Dictionary of Religious Terms
Richard Dawkins has proposed the idea that religions
are a kind of mind virus. They infect groups of people with
a set of ideas.
As with biological viruses, they must either reproduce.
This can be done
horizontally by infection of people outside
by infection of the children.
If Dawkins' hypothesis is right, what are the mechanisms
of the virus?
This is a dictionary of terms or concepts used in religion
where I will attempt to explore what is really
going on in a religion if this hypothesis were correct.
This is NOT a dictionary for the religiously infected
or the closed minded.
It is for open minded folk who wish to explore
a forbidden topic.
If you find yourself upset and angry, then
please do not write to me.
Calm down, think (for yourself!), and
be totally honest with yourself.
At my discression
I will put ALL email about this on the web
INCLUDING your email address, so you can get all the lovely
dictionary definition of baptize
is to "purify spiritually". This is quite odd.
Why would one need to cleanse a newborn
person? They are innocent (except that in the Noachian flood they
got killed by God anyway, oh well, oops!). So the real reason for
doing this to a baby - who doesn't know what is going on! - must be to
baptize the PARENTS into the church with respect to that little one!
In other words, it is a trap to keep the PARENTS bringing the child
back to support the church (follow the money).
(New as of 2004 Feb 10)
This is an odd one.
One goes to the Christian church
and they offer a little wine and a bit of bread.
But these food items are said to
represent the body and blood
of the son of God!
Yes, surely it is.
But what is really going on here?
Ingesting the body parts ... sounds like a means of infection
by normal biological viruses!
Would they be so blatant?
It is a symbolic means of infection!
At first glance,
This is a weird hypothesis
certainly less weird than the blatant symbolic cannibalism -
because viruses were not understood when this habit began.
But perhaps the thing that counts is the intellectual
infection - "we are what we eat" so they say.
So if someone eats these things, they absorb the idea
that goes with it.
cannibalism at Webster,
communion at Webster.
(New as of 2004 Feb 10)
This appears to be an unusually strong defense mechanism which
the mind virus uses to prevent people from escaping its grip.
The mechanism says to a person "if you stray too far,
just believe anyway. For gosh's sake,
DO NOT THINK for yourself!!"
In my experience it is the last line of defense and it
has a powerful grip on people.
When they realize that their religious beliefs run against
all that is known about the universe,
that the beliefs are illogical
and untennable, people suddenly zombify by dropping back
I have seen this happen repeatedly.
If faith is strong, there is no cure for the lost person.
It would probably be worthwhile exploring this mechanism
in more detail because it is so powerful.
Note that a religion that did not instill some form of faith
in their infectees (!) would not survive, so this is
completely consistent with the mind virus hypothesis.
An example of what someone who has strong faith might say is:
"What I was taught as a little kid must be right
because my parents cannot be wrong.
I insist that I am right and my parents are right.
Besides, the earth is flat, millions of people can't
be all wrong!"
For such people the world is too scary if they are wrong.
Religions have evolved to write down and
codify their beliefs. This stabilizes the 'genetic code'
of the virus. Religious people refuse to acknowledge
that this material was selected by people.
When the selection was done badly, that line of the mind
virus would disappear.
All statements created by the church, whether false or not
Whatever the church says is True must be so.
This is a snare of the mind virus that can confuse people.
If the church is always telling the Truth, then
all the other mind virus mechanisms are protected
because they are not to be questioned.
Of course, once one becomes aware of this nasty situation,
everything that a religious person says about religion
becomes suspect and open to careful investigation.
Tom Schneider's Home Page
origin: 2004 Feb 10
updated: 2004 June 8