So I am in a bit of a predicament, I am basically being force to join the Navy because I have a one-thousand dollar traffic ticket that I cannot afford to pay for and because I decided to take a break from college my father is making me join the Navy or else he will not pay for my traffic ticket and I go to jail. The Navy is something that I have considered doing for a while so I am prepared to join and I am looking forward to certain aspects of it such as being able to travel, benefits and all of that good stuff but I am concerned about what they might do to my psychological state that I been working so hard to de-condition from 18 years of social conditioning. I am very inclined with spirituality and whatnot, I do zen meditation, I study eastern philosophy and have indulged in countless spiritual practices with psycho-active substances. I am aware that they drug test and I am totally fine with giving up cannabis for a few years but I am worried that the military might undo a lot of this positive transformation I have gone through, my highly conservative grandmother tells me that they “break you down and rebuild you” which that statement scares the living hell out of me. So if anyone has any thoughts on this and if anyone has any experience in the military please share with me, thank you :)
I was forced to join the military when I was 17. I fucking hated it, but that’s just me. They do condition you and they will change who you are. Slowly but surely you will conform to their way of life or you will hate it like me and either get kicked out, go awol, or wait for you contract to finish. I joined the army though, and the infantry at that, so my situation was a little different than yours.
The reason I didn’t like the army is because people in it don’t care about knowledge. You don’t really do anything that requires you to use your intellect. The people that do want to become sophisticated or at-least get some kind of degree in college won’t be able to stay in the military.
What I would do if I were you is join up, do a 3 to 5 year contract, get some experience and maybe a deployment or two, and then get out and use the benefits to go to college. The benefits are nice, especially if you deploy.
See, I would never join the army or marines, that’s gotta have been hard. But I’m just going to go in with no expectations and just experience it for what it is, it’s really the best option for me right now. All I know is I’m bringing my guitar haha and I am probably going to school in San Francisco when I get out with the G.I bill :)
Only those who allow themselves to be broken can be broken. The military tactics of ‘breaking’ are focused on convincing you that your ‘ego’ is real and that you are ‘bad’ or in need of ‘breaking’. Transcend the ego, realize you are indestructible.
Enter the experience with openness, enjoy the travel.
Your grandmother is wise, she is absolutely right. You will follow orders, even those you fundamentally disagree with, once you have gone through their training, or process of social brain washing.
On our next podcast we actually have an ex-marine on who went to Iraq and he speaks very openly about his experiences there (which caused significant trauma), and the healing he underwent by participating in a scientific experiment with MDMA by non-profit organization MAPS (We spoke to Rick Doblin, the founder of MAPS, for the first episode.) Definitely listen to it as he has actually been through it and knows more about it than any of us can.
We cannot always control our circumstances but we can learn to control how they affect us psychologically, by sheer will you can refuse to allow anything to decide your state of mind for you, just have confidence that you can and recognise when you should.