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An Unsanctioned God

The history of religion as a revolt against the ruling class, dictatorships and tyranny.
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Another thing to include in my letter to Richard Dawkins and a proposal for a book I'll write later. Maybe tomorrow or never. Never works good too.

Simple concept, that if you have a dictator who says they're god, you come up with an imaginary god as a way of disavowing his control over you.

So if we all have to bow to the Divine Emperor McEmperorface and I'm getting sick of his BS, I announce my allegiance to a doorknob. The holiest doorknob you've ever seen, the divine doorknob of the kingdom of Doorknobia.

This might be one reason why religions are so common in all cultures. All cultures have assholes that want to control them and this would be a handy day way to declare your independence from their rule.

"Sorry McEmperorface, I answer to a higher power, the doorknob, and the doorknob says you suck."

doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020

Googled "doorknob with halo" and got this: https://images.app....l/VDfhpinABiHNzmP37
[doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020]

...aaaand this: https://images.app....l/Pv9ySLQUgvX5iCVT8
[doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020]

...aaaaaaand this: https://images.app....l/QsDvRscJKmZ3AjiL8
[doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020]

...aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand this: https://images.app....l/dkBeQSo9GUUYKZ6Z7
[doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020]

Religion timeline https://www.precede...-of-major-religions
An amazing read. [doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020]


       // , you come up with an imaginary god as a way of disavowing his control over you. //   

       ... unless the Divine Emperor is Gaius Caligula.   

       As a moral stance, it's flawless. As a survival strategy, maybe not so much.
8th of 7, Feb 24 2020

       on that subject, I have two all time favorite quotes.   

       One is from The Gadfly, and it goes something like:   

       God is a clay idol I can break with a hammer.   

       And the other from Benny Hill, and it goes something like:   

       God is Dead (signed Fred), and below it, Fred is Dead,(signed God)   

       And finally [Doc] -- if you have not as yet checkout out Young Pope and New Pope (on HBO), I would strongly recommend it.
theircompetitor, Feb 24 2020

       Naah, they're both just Popeulist Trash ...
8th of 7, Feb 24 2020

       TC, I'll check it out.
doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020

       CH, check the title, this is for a history book, not a new idea. I'm saying this has happened many times over the years and a history book exploring the origins from this perspective would be interesting.   

       And the Flying Spaghetti Monster would only be applicable if its first rule was "Don't pay taxes" or "Rise up against Kim Jung Un" in which case I'd say "Hey, where do I sign up?"   

       The FSM lacks the threat appeal of other gods necessary to garner a following. While Thor's throwing lightening bolts, the FSM's dripping sauce on the dictator's newly cleaned floor at best.   

       Remember the most successful recruiting edict of all time: "If you don't follow me you'll burn in hell, damned for eternity in torment and agony... but I love you."   

       FSM's gotta lot of work to do on his game. That's a tough act to follow.   

       But seriously, it's important to remember, every religion has some guy who made it up. What was their mindset? What was their goal? What made them think they could rise up against Caesar with this story? I'd like to see that explored.   

       Also also, I'm not a religion basher, I'd rather see somebody follow the doorknob than Kim Jung Un. I think religion might have been helpful in this regard. Of course the dictators have always been quick to just grab a new hat and say "Yes! Yes! I just talked to the holy Doorknob and he assigned me as envoy to all the people of Earth, and he's very pissed off that you're not paying him enough...through me!".   

       But again, religion it must be said can have its upside. This is coming from an atheist, but an atheist that thinks other atheists are pretty stupid if they think they have the universe all figured out just because they know a doorknob names Doorknobius of Doorknobia isn't the son of the great door latch in the sky.   

       I know how much I don't know, and it's a lot. It might be a little more than others, but not enough to even bother measuring.   

       Holy Doorknobius, did I just write all that shit?   

       Ignore, typing exercise on my part is all.
doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020

       A sort of photographic negative of this idea can be seen in the history of Greek religion, before and after Alexander the Great. Before Alexander, one of the most persistent themes of Greek thought was the hubris/nemesis trope - if you get too conceited, the gods will drive you nuts and ruin you. After Alexander, everyone could see that this was not true, every man and his dog wanted to be the next Alexander and, for centuries, many brutal despots emerged with this idea in their heads ...   

       ... not least Julius Caesar who, according to Plutarch, very much viewed Alexander as a role model (yes he was not a Greek but, by that time, the Greek cultural influence on Rome was strong) ... which is how we arrived at the divine Gaius Caligula, as instanced by [8th].   

       By contrast, the Abrahamic religions start from the Book of Job* which, in turn, starts from the observation that bad things keep happening to good people, and proceeds to the question, whatcha gonna do about it?   

       I suppose my point is, different religions are not interchangeable, politically. They have content.   

       *As I understand it, current scholarship indicates that this was the first book of the Bible to be written down - before, for example, the Book of Genesis.
pertinax, Feb 24 2020

       Damn P, save some knowledge for the rest of us!   

       Seriously though, interesting stuff.   

       I'm smack busy now but I gotta revisit your post with a little more time and a cup of coffee.
doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020

       //save some knowledge//   

       Here's a secret, [doc]; the total volume of primary source material on Greek antiquity in particular is essentially fixed*, and not all that large - so, with only a few years' study it is possible to know virtually everything about it.   

       It is far more impressive to be knowledgeable in a field like [MB]'s, where new facts appear every day.   

       *Barring the occasional discovery of a new inscription reading "Diogenes woz 'ere", or whatever.
pertinax, Feb 25 2020

       Well, some cool stuff there P.   

       Hear what you're saying CH but I'm looking at a new angle I think. I'm not writing a book, if I did it wouldn't be on this. Just an idea for a book or a study of some sort for somebody else to do.   

       Why religions are created is always sold as "Some guy wanted power over people so he made up a story about a magical guy he's friends with that will smote them if they don't give him that power." OK, but how many religions are just a counter to tyranny, a revolution against the ruling class? A tool against oppression. I don't know, that's why it would be interesting to see.   

       Or not.   

       As far as Christianity, that would be Jesus vs Caesar, that's an easy one. That revolution worked pretty well. I'd like to zero in on the revolution aspect of similar religions. Put it this way, how many religions were basically an act of war and revolution? How many of those revolutions left the people better off? How many left them worse off? I'd like to hear those stories.   

       One last sentence to try to clarify an idea I'm a bit foggy on myself to be honest. Tell the stories like you'd describe any war. Who was in charge? Why was their power susceptible to being overthrown? Who led the revolution? Why did the (religious) revolution take over? What tools did they use? The history of religions I've heard are tedious and boring, to me at least. They shouldn't be. Maybe they're just being told wrong.   

       OK, see the link. This link makes this slapdash post all worth while. it's a timeline and very brief description of all the world's top religions.   

       Idea: ehh, Link: incredible.
doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020

       Oh my god! They left out Zoroastrianism? Easily the 300th most important religion on Earth?   

       It's a list is the religions that won.
doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020

       Don't forget to mention how the catholics "converted" the Iberian Jews after the Reconquista ...
8th of 7, Feb 25 2020

       Just joshing CH, that is interesting.   

       You should be the one putting together a Netflix show or something. But zero in on the main concept here, show the rise of various religions as what they are, wars against the old order. Religious history that I've seen is very boring, at least to me.   

       The stories probably aren't boring though as long as they're told properly.   

       It's like how I was first told the amazingly fascinating story of WW1 such that I could barely stay awake. "Some guy got shot so we all had to kill each other." WW1 is the most fascinating story in modern history, it shaped the modern world, it created the never ending wars for peace industry and we were told it was because it was because some guy got shot. Yes, it was triggered by that, but that's like saying somebody died because their life functions ceased. Well, yes, but that's not really telling you anything.   

       I think the stories could be made much more interesting by zeroing in on this dynamic. I'm not going to do it, but as a consumer that's what I'd ask of somebody creating a documentary or book on the subject.
doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020

       Doors and doorknobs, the antique type, are one of my favorite design articles of architecture that I find deeply interesting and very much worth spending extra moola on. That and windows.   

       Frank Lloyd Wright built homes that the very first impression a person received was located in the entryway. Everything that the house held had to be visible with one lengthy glance. To allow people to appreciate what was the object of the house, it had to have a beginning that was cohesive with the conception and all the way to the end of the desired effect.   

       The doorknob is like a God, to a door as well as to some architects. The first part of the house you touch should be as special as the ceilings and the floors.   

       So once again the God thing is meaningful and of purpose to those who embrace it as a part of their consciousness so that it/she/he can exist.
blissmiss, Feb 25 2020

       (Me with a mic on stage yelling to the audience) "Hallelujah brothers and sisters, we have a believer among us! Let's welcome sister Blissmiss to the Holy Order Of Doorknobians! Praise the mighty trinity, the doorknob, the door lever and the deatbolt! May the latch be with you sister!"   

       But seriously, I'd think that doorknobs would be very collectible. Some are very beautiful and ornate.   

       In fact, instead of writing the book at the center of this idea I'm going to start collecting doorknobs.
doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020

       Always a suitable compromise, [doctor].
tatterdemalion, Feb 25 2020

       "Today, I'm going to change the Worl ... ooooh, donuts ! "
8th of 7, Feb 25 2020

       Saint Peter's Church of the Martyred Doorknob.
blissmiss, Feb 25 2020

       "Death waited until the pen had stopped, and picked up the paper.   


       '+++ All Things Strive +++', wrote Hex ..."
8th of 7, Feb 25 2020

       "Multivac, is there a God ?" ...
8th of 7, Feb 25 2020

       Lots of good stuff there CH, I'll check it out.
doctorremulac3, Feb 25 2020


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