EternalForest

High quality TV shows are great tools for self-actualization

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This is a bit of a response/discussion about this video uploaded back in 2014: (Leo may have changed this stance on this over the years though, sharing Love Death and Robots on his blog recently.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIIUg7WjGKA

Similar to the creative ideas and inspiration Leo mentions that you can get from movies, mindfully watching high quality TV series show the process of self actualization from start to finish! In a sense, watching these series mindfully and asking yourself quality questions along the way can be the ultimate lesson on how to self-actualize your own dreams and passions.

Watching these characters constantly challenge themselves on the Hero's Journey despite all their grand challenges gives the viewer that same sense of passion and thirst for adventure, even if most viewers are not conscious of it. For those going through struggles in life, a self help book may not always resonate, but watching dynamic and complex characters transcend their loneliness, drug addiction and dark pasts can inspire them in ways that non-fiction just can't achieve. Beyond the empty platitudes of the average self-help book on those subjects, it's that emotional connection, and that deeper resonance and empathy that will help them the most. If you watched a character you love self-actualize and overcome their vices, you feel like you can do it too. It's inspiring.

TV series can be some of the most powerful tools for self development! You can get enormous growth from quality live action dramas, comedies, anime, cartoons, anthologies, etc. BUT (and this is the big caveat), you must watch them mindfully. Laying on the couch for 4 hours mindlessly watching TV will not give you any benefits. However, watching shows consciously can give you as many valuable insights and wisdom as any self help book could give you (sometimes even more). And what's more, the emotional connection you have with these stories and characters will allow the lessons to resonate even deeper. Personally, when I finish a series that teaches me a valuable insight about purpose, love, humanity or some greater truth, the course of my life is always altered for the better. If you haven't checked it out, I highly encourage you to mindfully watch and journal your experience with the shows on the IMDB Top 250 TV list. It's a great place to start. The insights you'll get may surprise you, and you'll be entertained along the way :Dhttps://www.imdb.com/chart/toptv/

All in all, not only can these series change your life and inspire you to achieve greatness (when watched mindfully, of course), I believe that creating these deep types of series is a truly worthwhile and healthy life purpose! Thanks for reading. I'd love to get all of your thoughts on this.

Edited by EternalForest

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@EternalForest

I think what you're talking about could be valuable. My only concern with this is that it becomes a slippery slope for unconsciousness. Easy rationalization for the ego. "Yeah I'm working so hard on my enlightenment, this fifth episode of Tiger King is amazing".

If you just want to be entertained that's fine. But know when you're doing it. Know when you're just mindlessly entertaining yourself and when you're doing serious inquiry.

My suggestion would be that if you're going to do this, make sure you are really consciously deciding what information you are consuming. I'd also set a limit for how long you are planning to do this, e.g one 30-minute TV show.

 


Loving a new world into being.

Energy healing, music making, tree hugging, sacred being.

YouTube channel: https://youtu.be/k_gzVJIeTlI

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@aurum@EternalForest It's a totally slippery (rockslide/avalanche) slope!!! I seem to avoid backsliding with things like Leo/ TEDtalks but all media can be addictive. I have experienced first hand the insidious power of (especially fiction) TV to teleport me into a "reality" which allows me to breifly escape my "world", thoughts, and emotions. It's the cognitive equivalent of being a crack-head for me, without the physical side effects *except perhaps withdrawl*! With these sites like Netflix aimed to keep you hooked show after show, all re-starting up on their own, in full automation where one doesnt even have to lift a finger for the next episode to begin, it's far too easy to fall down the TV rabbit hole... and I wont get into how this could progress with VR... FUCK... TV can be scary, dangerous shit! I just thought of a bizarre correlation between a TV episode, and emotional episode... emotional is usually panic, mania, or depression, while TV can seem to hold similar intensity on the surface, but, over all... it's an "episode" of numbing, docile inducing, placating, distraction.... lol 

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Sure, there's time for entertainment and there's time for education, and there's nothing wrong with doing either one with proper balance. But what I'm suggesting is that education can be entertainment and entertainment can be educating and vice versa. There can be a fusion.

@aurum Would you put a 30 minute time limit in place for watching documentaries or educational materials? If not, why put one in place for a life-changing series like Neon Genesis Evangelion, which I honestly gained more wisdom and spiritual experiences from than 95% of books I've read? (fiction or non-fiction)

@Epiphany_Inspired These shows only become that if you want them to be. It sounds like you've been misusing TV. I'd suggest that you face your fear and watch an episode of TV a day to realize it won't make you some brainwashed zombie...

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This is an old thread that brings up really excellent questions have yet to be answered, so let's revive it!

Watching TV- pros and cons

Watching movies- pros and cons

What are the consequences positive and negative of consistent film/tv show watching?

How do we find media that has a positive impact on our lives? How do we find films and tv series that raise our consciousness and shit?

How do we avoid media that destroys our progress?

How do we discern what is and if there is good and bad medias (in this case films and tv series).

How can we use films and tv shows for personal development and growth? How can we use them in such away that prevents us from losing progress?

Do films brainwash us? Do they throw shit into our subconscious that hinders our growth?

 

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oh god i live for the movies, i think that from every movie you can learn something....if you want....

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 @longusername12345

Many interesting questions.

As a whole, movies and tv shows are Art in the same way as literature, music or theater is.

They are an experience, like everything else we experience.

So I feel like there are many different ways you can use them for self-actualization.

What is a movie in essence other than pixels on a screen? An immersive story. Stories have been used for centuries to deliver information in an entertaining way. And many people seem to enjoy stories.

 

Insights

You can get insights by watching a movie. Think about your current situation and how it relates to the contents of the movie. This requires that you are open to take the possibility that what was told in the movie is true and of value for you. Of course not every movie is made for this but Insights sometimes come in even the most surprisising circumstances.

Moreover a good movie will make you start asking question. By presenting interesting scenes and withholding information until the very last moment. Think about how you can make things in your life more interesting or see thing in a more interesting way and ask more questions.

Open Mindedness

You can use movies to open up to new ways of living and new perspectives. We tend to watch movies with characters we like to identify with (because that is what movies do, they make you identify with people on the screen). You can increase your capacity to see thing from different perspectives, especially when you watch movies you might otherwise would not watch. Maybe a different genre, or a movie from a different country than what you are usually interested in.

Focus

More on a side note but watching a movie or series for any length of time requires focus. If you find yourself wandering off in your mind or getting sleepy just come back to the movie. Only watch movies or series mindfully. Don't let the noise and images just rain on you. Try watching a movie with a lot of information and see if you can follow it. Or try to watch an older movie that seems kinda boring to us now because we are used to more fast cuts and action.

Emotions

Movies are fine tuned to evoce your emotions. If you want to watch a movie because of emotions they can be a great medium to feel more connected with yourself. Set the intention to feel all the emotions the movie wants to make you feel and really open your heart. Then again think about ways in which you can integrate these emotions into your life.

This is one of the main reasons why people watch movies. Before watching a movie make a conscious decision how that movie might make you feel and why you want to feel this way. Knowing why you want to feel certain emotions or maybe even need to feel certain emotions is a powerful insight. You don't want to use movies to fill a hole in you. Instead, use this information to work on your emotional mastery.

 

 

We watch movies because they make life appear more fun, interesting and magical.

Instead of using this to escape your reality, try if you can bring some of that fun, interesting and magical stuff into your life. Think about practical ways how you can do that.

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Posted (edited)

I'd say it depends on where you are in your personal development journey. If you have achieved all your life goals, are insanely happy, have a loving partner, everything you ever wanted, and your psychology has been sufficiently reprogrammed, go ahead and enjoy the show with your partner. 

When I look for a movie I look for comedies and light hearted ones. "50 First Dates" is a particular favorite of mine. Basically things that promote affection, laughter, and positive emotions and/or help me expand my tolerance levels for different perspectives in life without being too violent or bloody. 

Edited by sholomar

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@sholomar Do you think its also possible that the people that don't have all those things may actually need the messages of an insightful movie or show the most?

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@EternalForest Irony. 

Start creating movies in your mind, invent characters, plots, scenarios, apply to real life.

Fuck. 

I mean... Wow. People will come up with whatever rationalisations they can to choose inferior options.

I mean sure do what you want, but to advertise it as the schtick is just plain wrong.

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There are some worthy tv shows and movies, but most are just entertainment. If you were to do as the OP suggested and watch IMDB’s top 250 shows you’d be watching everything from Breaking Bad to Dragonball Z, and not for example The Good Place. 
I’d suggest filling your spare time 50-50 with worthy self improvement and the right kind of entertainment, by which I mean stuff that won’t rot your brain and that at least has some morals. 


“Don’t be afraid of experience. The more you experience, the more mature you become.”

— Osho

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my favorite movie is Godzilla, what does that says about me?O.o

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