Starting a religion is the easy part [1/2]

Atheists say: ‘yeah man, we really need a new religion.’ ‘Oh ya man, for sure.’ ‘Yeah someone should make a new religion.’ “Yeah someone should really do that.’

Look, the new religion meme was hot when Spandell first mentioned it, but it has become stale. The reason is that atheists don’t understand religion. They think it is some kind of abstract magical machine of strange beliefs. They’d wish they could believe something like that, but in their hearts they know they are too smart to believe in such strangeness. Hence the shift of responsibility: someone should really make a new religion.

Now, forgive me for sounding cheesy, but the truth is that the capacity for religion has been in our hearts all along. It is the most natural thing in the world.

Take Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. Indian guru. He looked at Western hippies’ culture, at capitalism, at Indian mysticism, and thought to himself: I can melt those things together in a new religion! Which is exactly what he proceeded to do, and boom: 100.000 followers all over the world, a collection of 93 Rolls-Royces, and enough Assabiyah to build an entire city out of nowhere in America, Oregon. Very impressive.

I like Bhagwan. I watched some his videos, read up on the man, and to me he looks like a man who generally has his heart in the right place. That said, I do not share his faith.

Now I’m pretty sure that adherents of the Bhagwan’s faith will tell me the usual things people of faith say to people who don’t share their faith: ah man you don’t understand his teachings, he was different from other religions, he specifically says he is not a religion, etc etc. Yeah, no. If it acts like a religion, smells like a religion, looks like a religion, it is a religion.

New religions happen all the time, all around us. Scientology, anyone? L. Ron Hubbard was a 20th century man. Mormonism, same story, even if Joseph Smith was a 19th century man. Oh and then there’s Russian Jesus, what’s his name, Vissarion, though he only has a ‘meagre’ following of 10.000 people.

People want to believe, which is really just another way of saying that people want to cooperate. So, starting a religion is the easy part.

4 thoughts on “Starting a religion is the easy part [1/2]

  1. The simplest model is that a religion deals with judgements of value, just like science deals with judgements of fact. And emotions: for value judgements and emotions go hand in hand.

    The problem is the following. A masculine religion just has to be tribal. And tribal on what level? Männerbund? Nah. Nationalism in the usual sense? No, the last thing we need is to emphasize the small differences and historical grievances between Western nation. We all are facing the same problems and should be allies. So, global white nationalism? But the problem is you unironically end up with Nuremberg rallies. I watched Riefenstahl’s films, Nazis really did figure out what kind of psychological buttons to press to make a religion of racialism. Obviously I don’t want to resurrect that, as it would lead to the same results, “this time it will be surely different” is hardly a good prediction.

    So what else is there? That is the first problem: what level of tribalism? If no tribalism, how to make it masculine?

    1. Well, maybe “IQism”, sort of a Builder/Maker religion.

      I recommend studying the godless religions of history. It is possible, because all you need is value judgements, emotions that emphasize the value judgements, and rituals that entrench that. So philosophies can work as religions. They did.

    2. It is a tough question, but not insurmountable. A baseline definition could be Jim’s definition of Christianity under Charles the Second.

      On the positive side, we do not need to define ourselves into a box. Our enemies will do that for us and we need not play their game.

  2. >But the problem is you unironically end up with Nuremberg rallies.

    Don’t threaten me with a good time.

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