Religious inoculation
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30-06-2012, 12:40 PM
Religious inoculation
The monotheistic religions are essentially totalitarian and anti-human, while polytheistic religions are not.

Polytheism seems to engender a certain amount of acceptance and inclusion.
For example, the Romans adopted gods from other religion over the years.
When one's worldview accepts multiple causalities, as opposed to the sky tyrant
being in charge of everything, there results a less rigid worldview.

Since it is difficult to use reason and evidence to treat the seriously infected religious mind,
maybe we could somehow use polytheism (or pantheism?) to inoculate people against the
much more virulent disease of monotheism.

Islam and Christianity are already semi-polytheistic, what with saints, djinns, angels, shaitin, Satan, etc.
There could be a wedge strategy there.

Just thinkin' out loud. Drinking Beverage

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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30-06-2012, 12:48 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 12:40 PM)Chas Wrote:  The monotheistic religions are essentially totalitarian and anti-human, while polytheistic religions are not.

Polytheism seems to engender a certain amount of acceptance and inclusion.
For example, the Romans adopted gods from other religion over the years.
When one's worldview accepts multiple causalities, as opposed to the sky tyrant
being in charge of everything, there results a less rigid worldview.

Since it is difficult to use reason and evidence to treat the seriously infected religious mind,
maybe we could somehow use polytheism (or pantheism?) to inoculate people against the
much more virulent disease of monotheism.

Islam and Christianity are already semi-polytheistic, what with saints, djinns, angels, shaitin, Satan, etc.
There could be a wedge strategy there.

Just thinkin' out loud. Drinking Beverage
It's a good observation, but I believe the wedge strategy was used early on by the Catholic church to get polytheists to convert to monotheists. The saints took the place of other gods. Many of not almost all of their observance days coincide with pagan festivals and rituals. Might be interesting to see if it could be used in reverse. It's certainly been a tactic of Protestants to point this out to their Catholic counterparts in hopes of converting them to "Real" Christianity.

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30-06-2012, 01:12 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
Rather than picking the lesser of two evils, I'm hoping reality catches on...

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30-06-2012, 01:53 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
Interesting... I think I would find polytheism far more inviting than monotheism. There are tons of Gods in India -always very elaborately depicted- very inviting, with their own stories. Polytheism has always been attractive on many levels. The Egyptians were given a glimpse of monotheism in 1352 BCE and they didn't care for it at all.

The Egyptians were happy worshiping numerous Gods; it gave them greater sense of personal identity and security. They wrote about them often in quite personal terms. At time, there were Gods that were popular, while others would fall out of fashion - kind of like movie stars. Though belief was strong, they also knew they didn't always have to take Gods too seriously; interaction was very strong but resolve was up to the Gods... or possibly it was up to the human doing the worshiping... one was never really completely sure. All one could do was just strive to do one's best and deal with shit as it came.

When Akhenaten tried to introduce monotheism to the Egyptians, they got pretty testy about it -it upset their whole psyche. I think that only one God(Aten) for everyone, must have seemed as ridiculous to them, as any God must seem to many non-Theists; it would just seem a fake, an illusion of the "reality" that they'd come to know and center their life around.

Even though his 16 year reign was peaceful and productive, after Akhenaten's death, people were itching to go back to their many Gods. Tutankhamun restored all the old Gods to their former status, and little of Akhenaten's images and contributions to Egypt's history was preserved.

Sorry ... I just put together a paper doll of a mummy with it's own little paper sarcophagus. Just thinking about Egypt. Shy

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30-06-2012, 02:28 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 12:40 PM)Chas Wrote:  The monotheistic religions are essentially totalitarian and anti-human, while polytheistic religions are not.

Polytheism seems to engender a certain amount of acceptance and inclusion.
For example, the Romans adopted gods from other religion over the years.
When one's worldview accepts multiple causalities, as opposed to the sky tyrant
being in charge of everything, there results a less rigid worldview.

Since it is difficult to use reason and evidence to treat the seriously infected religious mind,
maybe we could somehow use polytheism (or pantheism?) to inoculate people against the
much more virulent disease of monotheism.

Islam and Christianity are already semi-polytheistic, what with saints, djinns, angels, shaitin, Satan, etc.
There could be a wedge strategy there.

Just thinkin' out loud. Drinking Beverage

Intriguing idea. How do you plan to make monotheists switch to polytheism?
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30-06-2012, 02:29 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 01:12 PM)Debzilla Wrote:  Rather than picking the lesser of two evils, I'm hoping reality catches on...
Agreed. However, what I didn't make very clear is that I am exploring any way to mitigate the threat of the terrifying virulence of monotheism. The very real threat to peace and even survival from Islam and Christianity persuades me to consider mitigation before cure.

And I think it may be easier to go from the relatively benign infection of polytheism to atheism than from monotheism. That is certainly arguable.

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30-06-2012, 02:35 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 02:28 PM)Gaest Wrote:  
(30-06-2012 12:40 PM)Chas Wrote:  The monotheistic religions are essentially totalitarian and anti-human, while polytheistic religions are not.

Polytheism seems to engender a certain amount of acceptance and inclusion.
For example, the Romans adopted gods from other religion over the years.
When one's worldview accepts multiple causalities, as opposed to the sky tyrant
being in charge of everything, there results a less rigid worldview.

Since it is difficult to use reason and evidence to treat the seriously infected religious mind,
maybe we could somehow use polytheism (or pantheism?) to inoculate people against the
much more virulent disease of monotheism.

Islam and Christianity are already semi-polytheistic, what with saints, djinns, angels, shaitin, Satan, etc.
There could be a wedge strategy there.

Just thinkin' out loud. Drinking Beverage

Intriguing idea. How do you plan to make monotheists switch to polytheism?
As I pointed out, they're already almost there. We can reinforce that idea.

Maybe it's more subtle than that; we reinforce polytheistic themes in the culture, we expose children to polytheistic ideas to inoculate them against monotheism. I think there are always going to be people for whom reason and science aren't enough emotionally - I would rather have them thinking about wood nymphs and dryads than Yahweh or Allah.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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30-06-2012, 02:40 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 02:29 PM)Chas Wrote:  And I think it may be easier to go from the relatively benign infection of polytheism to atheism than from monotheism. That is certainly arguable.

I think polytheism would certainly present a smooth transition between God and no God. It instantly creates a level of doubt in one's mind. And once doubt is established, it's just a matter of that next step. Thumbsup

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30-06-2012, 06:21 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 12:40 PM)Chas Wrote:  Polytheism seems to engender a certain amount of acceptance and inclusion.
For example, the Romans adopted gods from other religion over the years.
When one's worldview accepts multiple causalities, as opposed to the sky tyrant
being in charge of everything, there results a less rigid worldview.

Are you sure this is really the case? Except for Buddhism, it would seem historically that all religions are by nature intolerant of other religions. The Romans may have adopted gods from other religions, but it would seem (as Erxomai pointed out about Catholicism) that it was an attempt to get others to worship their gods, not to foster peace between conflicting belief systems. Hindus are certainly polytheistic and their tolerance of other religions is questionable (India's state religion is Hindu, which suggests that at least some Hindus wish to impose their religion on others). But even without a counter-example, I just don't see how it logically follows that "multiple causalities" for our existence would result in a "less rigid worldview". Couldn't one believe in multiple "sky tyrants"?

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30-06-2012, 07:20 PM
RE: Religious inoculation
(30-06-2012 02:40 PM)kim Wrote:  
(30-06-2012 02:29 PM)Chas Wrote:  And I think it may be easier to go from the relatively benign infection of polytheism to atheism than from monotheism. That is certainly arguable.

I think polytheism would certainly present a smooth transition between God and no God. It instantly creates a level of doubt in one's mind. And once doubt is established, it's just a matter of that next step. Thumbsup
so moving from only one god to many gods is the next step in accepting no gods?
Do you know illogical that sounds. Tongue
"More is the only way towards none!"

The problem with this is it would never happen.
I mean you throw boat loads of evidence at the church and it takes them a million years to acknowledge it (looking at you evolution). Now you want to throw many gods at the church? You might as well be throwing no gods at the church it's pretty much the same thing to them.
The thing about religious people (the stubborn ones) is that it is their way or the highway (much like my philosophy, except I'm right), no gods or many gods it doesn't matter they'll reject it just the same.

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