2019/06/13

A Tale of Two Cults

2 Cults

Repeating the ancient observation that human beings are wired for worship is all the rage these days. Even hardcore atheists are fond of garnishing their rhetoric with that old chestnut.

The follow up is usually an argument that treats piety as an evolutionary mistake, like an appendix prone to inflammation. Science™ lovers propose solutions ranging from "curing" faith with magnets like 19th century mesmerists to replacing outdated religion with a more rational® substitute. Like French revolutionaries.

What the Big Brain Bunch always miss is the fact that they're engaging in a form of worship themselves--worship of their own intellects which statistician William M. Briggs calls scidolatry.

But I'm not here to talk about the small-souled bug men. They've had a rough enough time lately.

Today we'll take a close look at two cults that have sprung up more or less organically in the stagnant tidal pool left when Christianity receded in the West.

Two secular religions now compete--and often collaborate--to take the cultural high ground once held by the Church

First, let's define our terms. To qualify as a religion, a group must have three elements:
  • Cult: a consistent body of rituals for public worship
  • Code: a set of moral rules
  • Creed: a canon of shared myths that defines a shared identity
I'll add a further criterion introduced by reader D.J. Schreffler. A religion offers adherents explanations for their past, present, and future.
  • The origin story--this is part of the creed.
  • Ritual laws for the here and now--see cult and creed above.
  • Eschatology--the final chapter of the creed.
With the preliminaries out of the way, let's take a look at our two worldly cults in light of these terms.

The Cult of Pop Culture

GoT Watching Party

The 30-year-old cat lady who angrily petitioned HBO to remake Game of Thrones Season 8, the geek who buys four copies of every limited edition comic, the Star Wars fan who's still interested in seeing Episode IX because, "I have to know how it ends!" 

None of them are merely consuming entertainment. They are engaging in acts of public worship sanctioned by the PopCult.

Let's break it down.

Cult: Conspicuously consume Movies, TV shows, comics, and games blessed by the high priests at the six media companies. Attend the holy conclaves. Don the sacred vestments--ironic pre-faded tee shirts and cosplay. Go forth into the comments section and social media as a brand evangelist.

Code:

Creed: This is where the PopCult falls short of a full-fledged religion. While they have a massive and growing body of shared lore with which all members are expected to have at least a passing familiarity, only hopeless psychotics believe any of it is real.

As a result, the PopCult doesn't offer any answers. It's pure escapism. The problem is it's an escape from self-mastery and virtue into the clutches of soulless megacorporations.

The Death Cult


SJW

If you've followed this blog for any length of time, you're well aware of the Death Cult's contours. Nevertheless, most people seem to need constant reminders of this diabolical movement's evils.

In a nutshell, the Death Cult is a heretical mutant offshoot of Christianity that discards Christian doctrines it doesn't like, warps the others into anti-human inversions of their original purpose, and enforces them with rabid zeal.

You should take some time getting to know the Death Cult, since it's now the dominant cultural force in the West.

Cult: vicious ritual acts that are each inversions of a Christian sacrament. Taking part in a hate mob to unperson an infidel is reverse confession. Butt marriage is the inversion of holy matrimony. Butchering unborn babies and consuming their remains is the Death Cult's profane communion.

Code: the Byzantine and ever-changing form of cynical, coercive speech codes known as political correctness is now so infamous that Death Cultists are scrambling to rebrand it.

Creed: The Death Cult embraces two coequal but contradictory dogmas. 1) Everyone is so radically equal that all distinctions between individuals are oppressive social constructs. 2) Straight, white, Christian males have unnatural superpowers which have enabled them to enslave and oppress everyone else.

Unlike the PopCult, which is really just a funnel into the Death Cult run by the latter's high priests, the Death Cult does offer explanations for humanity's past, present, and future.

Origin story: Everyone existed in a natural state of blissful equality until straight, white men enslaved and colonized all other groups. The golden age ended, bringing forth misery and inequality by the evil white man's hand.

Pattern for daily life: All death cultists must work tirelessly to smash the patriarchy, bash the fash, and end the scourge of whiteness. #Resist!

To simplify matters, all of this boils down to relentlessly attacking the Christ and His disciples, though admitting that out loud breaks the Death Cult's discipline of the secret.

Eschatology: Once white people are a minority and the churches have been turned into dance clubs, the Golden Age of peace and equality will dawn once more. Most people living today won't be there to see it because they'll have been murdered, but it'll totally be worth it!

33 comments:

  1. So many heretics and not enough fig trees.

    I hear the best faggots for burning heretics are these things call bishops by the USCCB. And before any death cultist gets upset with me, by faggot, I mean a bundle of sticks, not disordered, sodomitic filth.

    Our Lady, Bane of Evil Degenerates, pray for us!

    Virtue ethics kills both of these cults. The rise of them tells us what has declined.

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    1. "Virtue ethics kills both of these cults. The rise of them tells us what has declined."

      If we lose to them, we'll deserve it.

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    2. Durandel

      And don't forget St Joseph terror and hammer against demons.
      The death cult is an embodiment of evil because it manifests an absolute nothingness. A void more intense than a black hole.
      xavier

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  2. You've blogged about how a good writer needs to deliver on promises. Now I'm not sure if you watched Game of Thrones Season 8, but it pulls the same kind of storytelling logic (or lack thereof) seen in Star Wars Episode 8 and the Ghostbusters reboot.

    1.6 million people signed that petition, some of which could very well be your fans. People's opinions are being dismissed these days. Hollywood writers would rather call their fans sexist and racist than take ownership for a job done wrong.

    Now I understand what you're trying to say: Fans should support indie efforts, and not projects backed by big money. The problem with that is Game of Thrones seasons 1-7 were quite good. Fantasy fans who have been dying for a good fantasy adaptation on TV watched it. People who are sick of garbage television watched it in hopes that TV moguls would get the picture: People want a return to quality. And that's exactly what we got...until the end.

    By comparing GoT petition signers to 30-year old cultist cat ladies, you join Hollywood and the very soulless megacorporations you mentioned in dismissing perfectly valid opinions.

    The petition was simply a way for voices to be heard. It was a calculated reaction to the 'deaf ears syndrome' corporations like Google and actresses like Brie Larson seem to suffer.

    Most everyone signing it knew perfectly well a redo wasn't possible and had nothing but respect for the cast and crew that put the show together when signing it. Their main request was that their voices be heard, and even that was apparently too much to ask.

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    1. I disagree. Lets not dress up the GoT petition as a righteous exercise of demanding that our Corporate Overlords hear the voices of the people.

      The GoT petitioners are nothing more than petulant children, demanding that the show end the way they wanted, with whatever version of the fairy-tale ending they dream up. “I was not satisfied, and I demand satisfaction!”

      The producers and writers of the show certainly knew what the fans at the top of the bell-curve wanted. They choose to deliver otherwise.

      To use our host’s analogy: The Creed is not to our liking! Let’s rewrite the Creed and nail it to HBO’s door!

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    2. Strongly disagree. There is a correct and incorrect way to subvert expectations. One throws story logic out the window and sets fire to all promises made to the reader.

      Calling the petitioners 'petulant children' is missing the point of the petition entirely. This cannot be boiled down to some temper tantrum because they 'didn't like the ending'. People don't like the ending to shows all the time. But 1.6 million signatures is unprecedented, meaning that there's more to the logic of subverting expectations correctly that you're willing to admit.

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    3. Subverting Expectations is different from surprising the audience. A surprise can come out of nowhere with no foreshadowing. Subversion, on the other hand, is a way to take a trope and play it in a different way, which is a comment on that trope's existence. Subversion is meaningful.

      For example, when Ned Stark dies in Game of Thrones Season 1, it subverts the expectations the audience has that the protagonist will overcome all odds and win at the end, especially if that character is honorable and has a just cause. Surprises might be big, unexpected, shocking even, but they are usually not meaningful.

      As an author, it's your job to deliver something unexpected so your story is believable and remains unpredictable. Yes. But if you offer an answer no one saw coming, it must also be a satisfying answer that was foreshadowed, or it doesn't work.

      Game of Thrones S8 SHOULD teach writers that surprising the audience is okay...so long as it follows story logic. Don't throw story logic out the window and you'll do just fine.

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    4. The fact that 1.6 million wasted their time signing a petition to protest something that has no bearing on their lives is a sad, sad commentary on Current Year.

      It will not increase virtue. It will not bring more beauty into the world. It will not give meaning to their lives.

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    5. So they aren't allowed to voice an opinion, then? And if they do, it's meaningless and a waste of time? Remind me, who's the nihilist in this situation?

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    6. Indeed GoT was always, very much, about putting a pin into the balloon of virtue and brining more ugliness into the world. That the finale wasn't as well-written as the rest is actually an upside, IMO.

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    7. Well, I can't argue with that last point. The early seasons went overboard with gratuitous amounts of nudity, and once I learned (from an author interview) that the long winter was meant to be an analogue to global warming, I facepalmed pretty hard.

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    8. The point is not how the writers allegedly failed by not following certain rules about what writers must do to properly "subvert expectations" or pull off a "surprise." Whether you are "allowed" to voice an opinion is also not at issue.

      As Heian-kyo Dreams points out and as this entire post from our host points out, it's the fact that fans are so invested in pop culture, they tie their sense of self-worth to the culture, and allow themselves to feel and express an alarming swing of emotions about things like GoT, Star Wars, etc.

      The emotional attachment is unhealthy when it reaches extremes like indignation that motivates actions like petitions to "be heard."

      You have a different opinion about how it should end? Fine. We all express opinions and have emotions about art and creative works. But at what point do your feelings about a work become unhealthy. And this is what our host has touched on.

      It's a TV show. Fans should move on and let it be. We all need a reminder to redirect our passion towards God and virtue and our wrath towards Evil.

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    9. I'm speaking here as a woman who's read the books rather than seen the show, but from that angle: Mercy is more GRRM's punching bag than chastity is. It's no secret that, if certain people could only have kept it in their pants, you wouldn't have a war, but mercy turns out to be a searingly bad idea every. single. time.

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    10. I just pray to God that people don't feel so apathetic and inclined to inaction when the day comes where we must take up arms against our oppressors.

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    11. I'm not throwing shade at normal people who were disappointed with the series' ending. I was referring to the parade of blue-haired blue checkmarks whining about Danaerys' fate as an example of "muh patriarchy'.

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    12. 1. Online petitions have been a joke from day one because anyone can sign them from trolls to bots and they require no effort at all.
      2. It will be forgotten in a year, just as the Sopranos' subpar finale was or Dexter's last season.
      3. It was never going to end anywhere other than disappointment when even the author has no idea what he's doing with it. Those last two books are never coming out.

      Anyone invested in this show, the same lot that screeched about how it outdoes Tolkien or Jordan and was an instant classic, had set themselves up for disappointment from day one. Martin is a modernist. He can't do satisfying endings.

      The petition for a new episode 8 was stupid, too. This is the new norm. You aren't getting a satisfying ending from Hollywood again.

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  4. Murder has not yet struck the Left as the course. Right now, it's waiting for the Boomers to die off, and meanwhile browbeat and genitally stimulate everyone else into the Way of Progress.

    That's why it's now, while the right-wing Boomers are here in force and the younger set (while still pretty genitally stimulated) are increasingly refusing to be browbeaten, that we might still effect a peaceful separation - shrill children from intransigent Neanderthals - before the vagaries of the Way of Progress do make murder obvious and inevitable.

    Yes, I know and agree with your points on the flaws of the Boomer Right. But they will permit real Christianity to exist, and not as abashedly as they used to, either. For purposes of Article V, I will welcome them as allies.

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    1. Let's not forget the Leftist who shot up the Republican baseball practice.

      And now a mainstream comedian is advocating acid attacks against conservative politicians.

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    2. Even so, you can't call murder part of the core tenets of current leftism. (And I don't know the story on that last, but I'll presume the comedian was a) filled with genuine bile but b) very much waxing hyperbolic. If they tended to mean exactly what they said, WAY more people would have died in fires since 2010.)

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    3. (I mean murder outside medical contexts, obviously.)

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    4. Point being, it's not YET too late to separate without a war, and it bears serious consideration.

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    5. How is murder not a core tenant for the Left. The dead from various flavors of socialism beg to differ along with the aborted. Since Liberalism seeks to maximize license, and having children or non-Revolution participating citizens can restrict said license, then murder is a logical consequence of that Creed.

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    6. But since when were they big on seeing their own logical consequences? Up until fifteen years ago, they could, in all intellectual honesty, dismiss the notion that sexual liberation would lead to gay marriage with a petulant sigh and a deep roll of the eyes. Same with "kill the opposition" today.

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  5. I'd like to add something that I should have seen before.

    Culture is derived from cult. Religion defines the culture.

    And culture is upstream of politics.

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  6. The Pop Culture reference reminds me of something I read once. It was about how important it was for the Apostles to drop everything to follow Jesus. Jobs, property, homes, everything. To a modern consumerist that sounds like insanity.

    But it makes a ton of sense. Without all those attachments holding you back like an entangling net you can't ever be dragged away from the path the Lord wants you to walk.

    In my life, cutting the cord has been a liberating experience. No longer am I planning my life around the premiere of the next big TV show. I don't waste time on the endless stream of Marvel & Star Wars being shoveled out any more.

    And do you know what happened with all that free time I won back? I've used it to write my work. And its all the stuff I loved about movies and TVs before they became afflicted with the rot of SJWism.

    Taking the path free of the Pop Culture cult is the way to go. And I recommend it to everyone.

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  8. Oh my. You've missed the elephant in the room. If the latest TENS just-so story is correct, and h. Sap. evolved to be religious... to have a "worship the supernatural gene...

    That means that the supernatural is a real thing that exerts environmental pressure on species.

    Too funny.

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