Re: The spectrum of cult memes

From: Van oost Kenneth (
Date: Thu 06 Feb 2003 - 20:13:42 GMT

  • Next message: Van oost Kenneth: "Re: The spectrum of cult memes/ addition 2"

    ----- Original Message ----- From: "Keith Henson" <> In addition,

    Humanity becomes more religious,

    The number of adepts of the great religions rise comparatively faster than the world's population. The augment of the number of non- re- ligious people and atheists falls short. The Dutch Reform Gazette bases its case upon the youngest figures given by the American religion- statistics David Barret and Todd Johnson.

    Those calculated that 1/3 of the 6. 28 billion people belong to Christianity and 1/5 to Islam. 849 million are Hindu ( 13. 5 %) and 5 % ( 371 million) are Buddhist. About 939 million say they are non- religious or are atheists
    ( 15 %) . The other part adhere other religions. The part of non- religious people and atheists rises respec- tively with 0. 8 % and 0. 2 % where in the meanwhile world's population rises with 1.2 %. Of all great religions Islam grows fast (2.1 %). Christianity rises with 1. 3 % barely faster than the grow of the worlds population. The number of Buddhists augments with 1%.

    Translated out of Dutch by Kenneth Van Oost, February 2003. Initial article Gentenaar 3 / 2 / 2003

    Personal notes,

    Such things I always take with more than 1 pinch of salt, not in the least that 1_ I think the investigators are biased and 2_ I think there is more ' religious ' stuff going round than the kind we can observe within the worlds religions.

    Today there is the belief in the economical growth, in economical and political significance, in prosperity, and belief in a better, more peace- ful future. There is indeed good evidence so to speak, (but I don 't possess any) that those things mentioned above can be evocated as ' religions '. Wall Street, the NY stock exchange, financial markets like Frankfurt, Brussels and Tokio are the Temples of Doom for many, profit is the God and money is the jesus to get to it ! Devotion has sweeped the planet and is now a central value of our existence.

    But, IMO, there is still another belief, and more to it, I think it is more a kind of religion_ in the same sense we generally constitute for the worlds religions_ and that is the belief in freedom, equality and democracy. Don 't get me wrong_ I don 't see those as some inglorious and pathetic results of some bizarre social/ cultural cult, but there is within the human constitution a fundamental thing at work.

    Ambition, in the sense that humans are always trying to achieve something that they possibly can 't_ isn 't this what occupies our mind !? Isn 't this not a question about existentalism !? Aren 't we all the time in search for " a right to live " !? Aren 't we in such a matter not convinced that we are ' self- de- terminated ' beings and in such ways we act like Gods, don 't we !? Isn 't this than not the same religious aspect we find within other religions !? I think it does !

    In the ways where along we try to reach our goals, the ends, the absolutes, the holy things, the glimmer lights, freedom, democracy,
    ...we explore aspects of " idolation ". Freedom, equality and democracy ( for all) are tokens of an utopian view upon the world. The platitude of life forces us to dream and in many ways it forces us to pursue those dreams....



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