The Dark Roots of Metaverse Technology
Metaverse technology owes much of its development to military research for flight simulation, with motion and computer graphics integrated into military simulations in the 1970s. The term “Virtual Reality” was coined by two former Atari programmers in the 1980s, but the roots of VR go back further into a darker history.
Metaverse platform applications are becoming increasingly popular, with uses ranging from business to entertainment. BeAnother is an altruistic program that uses VR to help viewers experience someone else’s perspective. However, some members raised concerns over the potential for VR to trigger dangerous neurological reactions such as “body transfer illusion” and “vicarious pain”, which can cause the viewer to experience another person’s physical suffering. In 2016 BeAnother members said VR can induce physical or mental pain or suffering, but this was already known.
VR was first used as a form of torture and mind control by the CIA in the MKultra project. MK Ultra was a top-secret CIA project from 1953 to 1973 that used mind-altering drugs and psychological tactics to control and manipulate unwitting subjects. This is alluded to in the Netflix series Stranger Things, where the character Eleven is revealed to be a product of the MK Ultra program, having psychokinetic abilities as a result of the experiments.
The CIA developed a method of using hypnosis and drugs to alter an individual’s mental state and manipulate their behaviours. The MKultra project was a top-secret experiment that used electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), sensory deprivation, and other forms of torture and conditioning to break down individuals and gain control over them. The CIA used the methods to create “Manchurian candidates” who could be brainwashed into performing any task given to them.
In the 1960s, the CIA continued exploring various mind control methods. Over time, the CIA turned to virtual reality to manipulate thoughts, memories, and perceptions. By creating immersive, personalised experiences in a simulated environment, the CIA was able to alter an individual’s mental state quickly and effectively.
Today, the Metaverse is used for entertainment purposes, like video games, but its potential applications in mind control are still being explored. While there is no evidence that Metaverse is currently used for mind control, the technology has the potential as a powerful tool for psychological manipulation. This is of grave concern for those who use Metaverse technology. Potential long-term health side effects for users are known to include mental health issues, and its potential misuse as a tool for brainwashing is a disturbing possibility. Current technology is enough to create an immersive experience, and as it improves, virtual scenarios can be indistinguishable from reality and have a powerful psychological impact.
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