SYNERGY
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SYNERGY

Conscious Journalism — The Balance Between Writing and Journalism

A story about a journalist who makes a reportage about a magician but stuck on Instagram loses consciousness and misses the real magic that takes place right in front of him.

Magician performing the trick (Photo: Karlo Tasler)

Once upon a time, there was a man who had the sights of a writer, but he worked as a journalist.

“Writer is a journalist who sees both sides of the story,” he thought on a day when he made a reportage about magicians.

“Writing is art, and therefore it comes from the place which is not understandable to the mind. It comes from the place where all living and all non-living things merge in one. Oneness. It comes from the divine source, which comprises all the creativity. Once a writer reaches the place of no mind, his awareness rises, just as his observing power. He understands that every single person has an equally important role in keeping the universe running and that every single person has a valuable story to share. There is no judgment, no bias. Only empathy and understanding for the story which is here to be shared,” the man thought when he met a magician and a bartender.

“Hi guys,” he said and sat at their table. “I am here to speak to you,” the man said to the magician. I work for a company called Circus Forever. It is a specialised magazine which covers stories about clowns, jugglers, trapeze artists, magicians and so on.”

“Choose one and don’t show it to me,” the magician said after he took a deck of cards out of his bag and offered them to the man.

“Five of hearts,” the man checked the card and put it back into the deck in the magician’s hands.

“Journalism is the opposite side of that divine source,” the man thought when the magician started performing. “Journalism doesn’t have much with the oneness of things, but rather with ego. A journalist operates with the mind, just like an economist, nurse, or engineer do. Journalism is what happened when writing got institutionalised. Quite naturally, bias took over. The true impartial observer got lost. Why? Because as soon as writing becomes institutionalised, due to different influences, it adopts a certain level of identification, whether with the government, company, editorial policies, journalist code of ethics, advertisers, colleagues or audience. Whatever it is, as soon as some kind of identification happens between the journalist’s mind and some of the influences, the journalist loses awareness of the oneness of things, and bias leads him to biased stories — stories that are important to the company, advertisers or audience. The wisdom that says every single person has an equally valuable story to share is lost. Therefore, complete impartiality is lost too. The truth is lost. Even if a journalist tends to be unbiased, there is always some kind of bias. My bias at this moment is towards this magician. Since I am writing a story for the Circus Forever magazine, I don’t find this bartender newsworthy. I have lost the writer’s idea of the oneness of things where all people worth equal.”

“Was this your card?” the magician asked the man when he finished the trick.

“Wow, how did you do that?” the man asked the magician when he saw the magician holds the five of hearts.

“It was a good one, wasn’t it?” the bartender, friend of the magician, interrupted.

“It was,” the man confirmed and kept thinking: “Conscious journalism! Conscious journalism is a balance between writing and journalism. It is a type of journalism when you are influenced by all those factors, but you are aware that you are being influenced. Since aware, the identification with those influences can’t be complete, and you are still able to see both sides of the story. You are impartial as much as you can be. You can still observe and seek the truth. The truth that is there when all the biases are dissolved. You can still be guided by the divine source. No judgement there. But you are also aware of your role… A role of a journalist.”

“That is my favourite trick,” the bartender said when the magician pulled out cards out of his mouth. “I love his tricks!”

“As a conscious journalist, working for the Circus Forever doesn’t make me a circus journalist. I am aware and therefore the full identification with my role can’t be complete. I can still see the full picture and understand the story of this bartender. Since I am aware of the bias I’ve come here with, I can observe the magician while still understand the bartender is here as well and that without him, this scene would not be complete. He is here to give me the full picture even though the audience of the Circus Forever might not be interested in the full picture, but in the magician only. Therefore, for the sake of my audience, I have come here with the bias.”

“Let me take a photo of you while you are doing a trick,” the man said to the magician.

“Not a problem,” the magician said and grabbed a magic hat from under his chair.

“The more technology there is, the more difficult to retain awareness is. Technology narrows your field of reality,” the man thought when he took the first picture of the magician with the hat. “I am seeing the world through the camera lens right now. I am focusing only on a narrow field of reality, which I think might be interesting to my audience, while the world is passing by next to me. While the truth is passing by next to me. However, I am aware of the process of losing awareness! Of losing the fragments of reality. The bartender is still here! It’s all good,” the man thought and winked to the bartender.

“Abracadabra, and this is Milo,” the magician said when he pulled a rabbit out of his hat.”

“Well done, mate,” the bartender said.

“Take a video now,” the magician told the man and spat two sponge balls out of his mouth. “The next trick is perfect for a video.”

“Ok, let’s make a video,” the man said, took the smart phone out of his pocket and stood up. “My field of reality has just narrowed a bit more. I am not only seeing the world through the camera lens now, but I even need to focus just on this tiny bit of reality and follow it with my camera. An elephant can pass next to me, and I would not see it. But again, at least I am aware of the process of losing awareness, so the complete loss of awareness can’t happen.”

“And no balls anymore,” the magician said. “I swallowed them!”

“Amazing! I am posting the video on Instagram.”

“Good, good. The more coverage, the better!”

“So, how long have you been performing as a magician?” the man asked.

“Since I was a little kid,” the magician said, rolled up his sleeve and showed a tattoo on his forearm of a jocker throwing cards.

“That’s a nice tattoo,” the man said and checked his phone. “Two likes on my Instagram video already.”

“That’s good,” the magician said.

“The tricks you do…” the man was about to ask. “What kind of magic is that?”

“It is manipulation,” the bartender interrupted the question. “It is manipulation.”

“Oh, shit,” the man thought. “I’ve forgotten the bartender is here. I am getting lost on Instagram,” the man came to a conclusion and checked his phone once again.

“Yup, manipulation,” the bartender confirmed.

“Five likes so far,” the man told himself and then realised: “Ok, I see what is going on. I am losing awareness. It is not about seeing the world through the lens of the camera anymore. It is about observing some other world, the illusion of Instagram. My field of reality is getting narrowed and narrowed. Fucking technology! At least, I am still aware of the process of losing awareness. Therefore, I am able to cut this shit off.”

“Hey man, who taught you the tricks?” the man asked and put off the phone on the table quite excessively.

“My father bought me my first magic set when I was six years old. We learnt tricks together.”

“So, it is about manipulating?”

“Yes, it is about manipulating.”

“Let’s make another video,” the man said and picked his phone up from the table.

“Sure,” the magician said and took a couple of coins from his pocket. “You will like this one,” he said as the man turned on his phone camera.

“I will post another video on Instagram, and then I will have two magician’s videos in a row. The Circus Forever audience will like it,” the man thought as he was filming the magician making the coins disappear.

“Oh, you thought it is about disappearing, but it is not really. Check your pocket,” the magician said.

“Oh, crazy! How did the coins end up in my pocket?” the man took the coins out of his pocket while he was filming the whole scene.

“Manipulation!”

“This was great!” the man said, finished the video, posted it on Instagram, and checked the number of likes he had on the first video. “Seven likes!”

“Thank you,” the magician said.

“Oh, I have a message,” the man said when his phone vibrated. “It is from my friend. She says she likes the videos.”

“That’s good.”

“Hey, man, can you show me another trick? I will film this one as well. It seems that people like them,” the man said.

“Then they will definitely love this one,” the magician said and prepared two dices.

“All set! I am ready whenever you are,” the man said when the magician started multiplying dices.

“Where are you looking at?” the magician asked the man. “Stop looking through the camera. You will never realise the way I am manipulating you. Look at me, and you might find out.”

“Great, all done,” the man said, not even understanding the point of the trick he just filmed.

“What is your name on Instagram?”

“It is MariusMagic,” the magician answered.

“Perfect. I am tagging you in the video.”

“Sure.”

“Let’s do live video now so people can watch you performing tricks in real-time,” the man said. “Take your cards now, show me that trick with the cards again.”

“Ok, man, easy. I will do it.”

“Come on. It is on. You are going live. Eight people are watching.”

“Ok, I am ready,” the magician said as he started the trick.

“So, this is Marius,” the man introduced the magician to the audience. “He is performing some brilliant tricks for you. He is about to make you amazed.”

“Choose the card,” the magician said to the man.

“Eight of diamonds,” the man picked the card with one hand while filming with another one.”

“The followers must be enjoying this. It is proper content. Later I will ask him for another live video as well, so it will be great. The audience will be happy, just as my editor once I will have written a story about this. Our circus equipment advertisers will be happy as well.”

“You happy?” the magician asked when he finished the trick. “Is that your card? Eight of diamonds?”

“That’s the one,” the man said and finished the live video.

“Guys!” the bartender exclaimed. “Did you see the magic?”

“Yes, I was filming it,” the man said proudly.

“No, the real magic,” the bartender pointed to the street. “I just saw a man riding an elephant just here 20 meters away.”

“The elephant?” the man was stunned. “I didn’t see no elephant! Weren’t you sitting here the whole time?”

“No, I stood up and went to see the elephant,” the bartender said. “The elephant in streets of London! What a magic!”

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