The Influence of Pop Culture on Society


The influence of pop culture on society is fairly profound. Pop culture is about what people like and dislike. At the essence these likes and dislikes  are thoughts on ideas and concepts that appeal or repulse. If enough people feel strongly about something, it enters the realm of pop culture and once this entrance begins this entity carries power. Music and the moving images of film and TV have the most influence on the masses. The current omnipresence of technology and the horde obsession to this constant stimulation have given much fuel to the influence of pop culture on society.   Music in particular carries a weight unique among components of pop culture. The reason for this is that music by its nature is a very unifying force. The Vedas of Ancient India teach that the creation of the universe started with sound. This is why music has the enormous capacity to enable large groups of individuals to transcend one’s sense of isolation and feel connected to each other while listening to music that strikes a chord deep within. This deep chord is a connection to our origins and the collective consciousness that we all share. Some may be fully conscious of this connection some may not but we all feel it. The music of the 60’s and inspired by the Beatles, were part of a grand movement in pop culture  to satisfy a yearning to feel a deeper connection to the whole of humanity.

What is the Influence of Pop Culture on Politics?

Bill Clinton playing saxophone on Arsenio Hall TV showPop culture has certainly played a role in politics dating back at least into the 60‘s up to our current time. In politics presidential politics carries the most weight. Two good examples of when politics and pop culture collided and had a genuine effect on our society are when President Clinton played the sax on the Arsenio Hall Show and President Obama flashed his wit and charm on the talk shows as well. Clinton’s sax playing has been identified as a pivotal moment when the US electorate started to really connect to him on a personal level. Clinton started out as an underdog to ultimately win the election. The effects of his presidency is certainly quite different than if either of his two opponents had won this election. Obama was quite an unknown figure to the majority of the country and the casual setting of the talk shows enabled the country to see what he was like when not in presidential mode. No doubt this helped him win his election as well.

Does Pop Culture have any Influence on Karma?

Dalai Lama As mentioned earlier pop culture is about ideas and ideas motivate actions. Karma is about the future ripple effect of our actions. So yes there is a connection between pop culture and what karma we create for ourselves. The Dalai Lama, a uniquely political and spiritual figure warns us to not let the behavior of others destroy our inner peace. This sage advice has both a spiritual message and a political one. The political inference is do not let the violent behavior of others motivate you to behave violently. Situations can arise when we need to defend ourselves with the use of violence. However, this should always be a last resort given after considerable consideration. Regretfully, elements of pop culture encourage unnecessarily violent behavior. A spiritual person believes that every single person everywhere and every living thing as well as inanimate objects everywhere is profoundly connected. Therefore committing an immoral act against all of the above is wrong. When we hurt each other, we hurt ourselves. Pop culture is as seemingly pervasive as karma. However, karma is the much more powerful force because our karma is based on numerous lifetimes that have all preceded current pop culture.