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Forming Religious Meme

Forming Religious Meme

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Published by JK Ellis
Part of the Mind Control Archive. Share this with a friend and send them to http://www.scribd.com/groups/view/2546-mind-control
Part of the Mind Control Archive. Share this with a friend and send them to http://www.scribd.com/groups/view/2546-mind-control

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Published by: JK Ellis on Nov 23, 2007
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06/25/2014

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Elements of a Functional Religious Meme
Religions have often been referred to as "memes". A meme is a self-reproducingidea, that spreads from one mind to another. A mind-virus is a commondescription, although a meme is an abstract concept rather than a physical,tangible entity like a biological virus. Playground crazes are memes, such as thecurrent craze in the UK for Yo-yos. Someone sees somebody else using a Yo-yo,thinks it looks like fun, and get a Yo-yo themself, only to be seen by yet anotherperson who has a similar reaction. The meme "Yo-yos are fun, go and buy one"spreads rapidly through the population of school kids. Memes like this, however,tend to die out fairly rapidly (and reappear sporadically years or decades later).They just don't have the staying-power of religions.Many religions propagate themselves very efficiently through a population, andcan last for many centuries before evolving into something else or being replacedby a stronger, more effective religion. This does not mean that a particularreligion has any more truth than the one it supersedes, just that it is better at"infecting" a mind and spreading itself to other minds.There seem to be some elements that most religion-memes have in common thatenable them to survive and reproduce. So, here is a Create Your Own ReligionManual. Most of the worlds major religions include some or all of these attributes.(If the worlds Yo-yo manufacturers want to get really rich, they should either tryto have Yo-yos adopted by a strong religion, or create a religion based around Yo-yos using the following guidelines.)
Self reproduction
Obviously, this is the most important part of the meme. If your beliefs do notspread, they will die pretty quickly. Getting others to believe is vitally important,and many of the other elements are used to help this one.It is good to tell others about this belief. Not only will it make them better people,but converting others helps justify the belief. If you have children, it is good tomake them also follow this belief. Children are a blessing from God, and will alsobelieve absolutely anything you tell them.It can take a lot of work to convert some people, but it is always worth the effortas you are doing them good. Failing to spread the good news is a sin.Example : the Roman Catholic church uses this to great effect, intentionally ornot. The doctrinal bans on contraception and abortion ensure that as many babiesas possible are born into religious families, and those babies will be brought up toshare the same beliefs as their parents.
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A perhaps counter intuitive way of self-replicating the belief is to state that veryfew special people can learn the “truth”.
Reward
Believing is good. It will make you a better person, and you will be rewarded inthis life and the next. Good things that happen to you are blessings from God,and you should be grateful for them. Other good things should be seen as justification of the truth of the belief system and of God's approval of youractions. Anything positive that happens that does not have much to do with thebelief can be claimed as a Miracle. Good harvests, childbirth, battles won, moneydonated etc. may all be seen as miracles, showing that God approves of you.Sayings such as "God helps those who help themselves" help reinforce this.One way of creating a strong meme using reward is through the process of indoctrination. To do this the individual must make some sacrifice (study, prayer,going to classes, fasting, the list goes on) before they are rewarded by the group.The reward can of anything as long as the individual has prior knowledge andanticipation of it. The reward can be a new title such as “novice” or “adept”, it canbe a instructional knowledge known as “Indoctrinated wisdom”. Or it could be theprivilege of going through a ceremony like catholic confirmation.
Faith as a virtue
Belief without evidence is good. It is a sign of virtue, purity, trust and piety. Infact, if something is particularly hard to believe in, you require much strongerfaith to accept it and are therefore a more virtuous person as a result. Belief despite contradictory objective evidence is especially good. Those who havetrouble accepting seemingly arbitrary and implausible things are doubters,skeptics and unenlightened. They should take lessons from those of stronger faithwho have no trouble believing.Example:"And the Son of God died, which is immediately credible because it is absurd. Andburied he rose again, which is certain because it is impossible." - Tertullian, 2ndcentury ChristianI've also heard (but not confirmed) that the Jewish Kosher rules work in a similarway - they are (seemingly) arbitrary, complicated, difficult to implement and hardto follow, so it requires considerable strength of faith to keep to a completelykosher diet.
Reinforcement
Include many rituals and ceremonies that happen at regular intervals throughoutthe year. Eventually, these may be incorporated into the local traditions. They
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also provide a focal point for believers to concentrate on one particular aspect of the belief. Also, it can be good to include rituals which are expected to beperformed at key stages of follower's lives. Birth/naming rituals, coming of age,weddings and funerals can all be given a religious aspect (and many will alsobecome local traditions).Almost anything positive can be attributed to God, and anything bad can beexplained as being "mysterious", thus helping people understand that God isbehind everything and even things which look bad might actually be good, if onlywe could understand it from God's point of view. Which, of course, we never canso we'll just have to trust God, won't we?
Punishment
Failure to believe is bad. It makes you a bad person, and you will be punished inthis life and the next. Note: helping non-believers to start believing is good, as itobviously means they will no longer deserve to be punished. Informing non-believers of the available punishments can help to convince them to believe (if you assume that threats of eternal torment are going to be plausible to someonewho doesn't actually believe in an afterlife, and you deflect those awkwardquestions about why a loving god would want to see someone tortured forever).Bad things that happen to you may be eitherA blessing from God, in order to strengthen your faith. You just have tounderstand the message.Punishment from God, for your sin.Attacks from the Devil, to attempt to turn you from God. You must strengthenyour faith.Remember - nothing, absolutely nothing, happens for no reason.
Self defense
Many non-believers will laugh at your beliefs or persecute you because of them.This is a sign that your beliefs are in fact True. The non-believers are trying todestroy your faith because they know that
this
is so. Only those who share yourbeliefs are good people. Converting others to your beliefs increases the number of good people and reduces the number of bad people. People who leave the groupare bad and should be avoided if they refuse to come back. For some people, thename "religion" is not satisfactory as it lumps your true beliefs with the falsebeliefs of other religions. Try using "relationship" or "reality" instead (e.g. "Don'tmake the mistake of calling Christianity a religion - it's reality").You must also defend against attack from within. Encouraging belief in MysteriousDivine Purpose is useful for this, as are the following:
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