Can you see why pretending is harmful? Do you see how it is used to make people susceptible to psychological suggestion and how prayer and passion are used to create a culture of hate and ignorance? Find out what you can do to combat this kind of unhealthy thinking.
The use of of role play and pretend are good learning tools for Children. But when adults pretend in order to ignore reality, it becomes unhealthy. When you add emotional intensity, it becomes a slippery slope, leading to distorted thinking and values.
Hate is a passionate negative feeling for someone or something. Ignorance is the absence or lack of knowledge, which leads to false conclusions. It manifest in three ways:
1) The lack of facts about something. Even the smartest person lacks the facts of everything.
2) This is failing to understand something. This is common. Before we learn, we do not understand. And not everyone understands advanced mathematics and science.
3) Denial of the facts. Many people learn to reject any evidence or idea which contradicts their worldview.
Prayer is Pretending
Prayer seems innocent, but pretending is a form of self-hypnosis, which is why it is a learning tool. This tool can be misused. They use this tool to program their doctrines, beliefs, and values.
Some religions require it as a demonstration of allegiance and devotion to their belief system. Here’s the first problem: the more you do it, the more it erodes your ability to use reason and common sense.
Prayer is willful ignorance and the denial of facts in order to maintain the belief in things for which there is no evidence. It doesn’t mean the individual does not possess the ability to understand, nor do they lack access to the evidence. It means they choose to ignore it.
Creating A Culture of Hate and Ignorance
Prayer is a core component of Western religion. It is at the heart of the Abrahamic traditions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. (1) If we understand why pretending and prayer are harmful, we can make an informed decision about using it. Prayer is pretending. And this is the assertion in something which is false and contradicts reality.
Christianity is the creation of the Roman Empire, which they made by combining the religions of cultures they conquered in the Mediterranean region. And, it remains one of largest rebranding efforts of all time by making the ancient mystery religions into the new Universal religion. These myths still have a major influence on much of the cultural narrative.
This rebranding makes prayer a socially acceptable act. It’s used to show belief in a higher power. This act may be a requirement for some social situations. You swear an oath to tell the truth in legal proceedings by invoking, or pretending you believe in, an imaginary friend.
The “three Ps” of propaganda are pretending and prayer and passion. When you combine these three ingredients, they make the mind pliable and easy to program. The three major religions of the Abrahamic tree use this form of self-hypnosis extensively. (2)
Western thought defines prayer as an act of submission. It is pleading a higher power to intervene on our behalf. This means you pretend you have an imaginary friend who can help. The Catholic Encyclopedia explains it well:
“An act of the virtue of religion, which consists in asking for proper gifts or graces from God. In a more general sense, it is the application of the mind to Divine things. It is not merely to acquire a knowledge of them but to make use of such knowledge as a means of union with God. This may be done by acts of thanksgiving, but the petition is the principal act of prayer.” ― The Catholic Encyclopedia (1911)
Salvation is a magical process in the Abrahamic tree of religions. These religions use a common formula called mental, magical, mystical appropriation. Emotional intensity is a key element for self-hypnosis. Concentration with emotion makes the subconscious more susceptible to suggestion. Prayer and passion make programing with propaganda possible.
The devotee uses prayer to reach out mentally to a divine power like God, Angels, or Saints. This establishes a mystical connection. The actual recipe varies from sect to sect. It may include repeating specific prayers and passion while invoking the secret name of God or saints. The recipe is often a part of a ritual. The rituals include water baptism or walking on hot coals.
Salvation provides access to afterlife rewards and a place in heaven. It allows the devotee to avoid the afterlife punishment of hell. There is a promise of incentive for your obedience. But a threat of punishment if you don’t fall inline and become a believer. It sounds just like extortion. What do you think?
This magical process not only provides access to salvation, but other useful things. Healing (3) and material wealth are some of the other things you can get by becoming a believer.
People pray for various outcomes, from physical healing to winning football games. Here’s how it works. If healing occurs, the person healed gives God credit. However, if the person does not get healed, they don’t get to blame their imaginary friend for not intervening. Instead, they blame themselves. They didn’t pray hard enough or long enough.
The same thing with prayer and the football game. If you win, it is because your imaginary friend helped you. If you lose, it is your fault. But there’s a dilemma when both teams pray to the same imaginary friend for victory. What’s a God going to do?
Winners give credit for the victory to their imaginary friends. But the losers blame themselves. They were not good enough for their imaginary friend to intervene. You never blame your God for not helping. It’s always your fault. And it is this kind of thinking which promotes the use of logical fallacies like this.
A Culture of Inclusion and Belonging
The opposite of hate and ignorance is respect, inclusion and belonging. An inclusive culture has room for all beliefs. People understand religious beliefs are based on pretending and not reality. Once you grasp that your religion is the belief in myths, then you can accept other points of view without feeling threatened.
A culture based on exclusionary thought is tribal in nature. We can trace this tribal thinking back to the concept of phenomenology.
Phenomenology, Prayer, and Passion
The Abrahamic religions are not new. They are old religions with new names. They are a rebranding of Babylonian mitigated dualism. Here, you have two gods, with one good slightly superior to a bad god.
Christianity added the dying-god myths to this recipe. This addition helped to differentiate Christianity from Judaism. Islam is a later spun off of ideology. These religions have one thing in common: the philosophy of Phenomenology. This ideology perpetuates a culture of hate and ignorance, and here’s why.
Phenomenology asserts things exist only if we sense them. If you don’t experience it directly, it doesn’t exist. Everything only exists when we perceive them with the senses.
It is a philosophy which presumes man is in control of all creation, second only to his God. Here, a select group control all phenomena. It is a cult based on supremacy, and this supremacy is rooted in ethnic, racial, or religious sectarianism. This kind of ideology breeds hate and ignorance.
We can summarize phenomenology in answer to the philosopher’s question. Does a tree make a noise when it falls, and no one is around to hear it? A Phenomenologist would answer, no, the tree would not make a sound if they were not there to hear it. Because, for them, the tree does NOT exist until they experience it. Therefore, reality exists only through human perception and experience. If man perceives it, then it exists. If someone doesn’t perceive it or experience it directly, it simply doesn’t exist.
Quite simply, people use this philosophy to justify and rationalize inhuman acts. It teaches believers they are the chosen ones of their imaginary friend. This gives them preferential treatment. Everyone else exists for their benefit. So, they can treat them any way they wish because they are less than human. These unbelievers do not exist unless the chosen one experience them.
This kind of thinking often uses a scapegoat to blame for anything that happens. This way, unbelievers become the target of their anger. After all, unbelievers aren’t real people. They only exist for the use of the believer.
A cult of self-appointed chosen ones underlies the fracturing of culture in the modern world. It spawns the war between Christians and Muslims. One side thinks the Muslims are unbelievers, and the other thinks Christians are infidels. Thus, they can kill each other with their imaginary friend’s approval. None of these ideologies promote a culture of inclusion and belonging. Even if you belong to the cult, you live in constant fear of making a mistake.
Most people would say this kind of thinking is absurd and irrational. It is arrogant to think reality exists for your benefit alone. Whether you experience something or not has no effect on its existence. Everyone and everything is real, not just a figment of your imagination.
Why Pretending Creates Hate and Ignorance
It is a well-established point that facts and things can exist whether anyone believes in them. Belief is irrelevant to the factual basis of reality. The philosopher’s question is, does a tree make a noise when it falls if there isn’t anyone around to hear it? If we apply our newest analytical tool, a fact can exist whether anyone believes it.
So, yes, if the tree makes a noise when it falls, it makes a sound regardless of whether anyone is there to hear it. Contrary to the phenomenologist’s point of view, we assert that man cannot affect reality (physical or spiritual) by the power of his thought. Prayer and pretending are worthless enterprises. It is merely pretending and putting on a show.
However, this show does have a purpose. It is part of the technique of self-hypnosis, a process which came along with the doctrines of Western theology. It is as effective today as when the ancient mystery religions first devised it. Its use in systematic indoctrination enables it to overcome logic and common sense.
The Slippery Slope of Prayer and Passion
Pretending is a slippery slope. If you can believe your imaginary friend exists, you believe anything else that goes along with it. This kind of thinking makes people lifelong customers of mythology. It can become an identity that blinds them from using common sense and logic. But this is where the slippery slope becomes dangerous.
Prayer and passion go hand in hand. The more passion in your pretending, the more susceptible you are to the power of suggestion. It is why the most successful preachers always get people into a highly emotional state.
Believers often use the argument of phenomenology in both ways. They use it to claim that things do not exist unless they experience them and unbelievers are only around for them to use. Then they use the argument in reverse to prove their imaginary friend exits. They say if things can exist outside of my direct experience, then so can God.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t hold up to logic. We can prove that other things exist outside our physical sphere using physical evidence. But, the lack of evidence for Gods is not proof of their existence. There are three ways to approach the subject of higher power. Religions use faith and experience. Other people use reason and some use a combination of all three.
These systems also employ the concept of phenomenology to support the efficacy of prayer. It claims prayer works, but if it doesn’t, it’s your fault. You aren’t praying hard enough. Then it reverses and uses phenomenology to justify contradictions in its theology. For example, Western organized religion has an outward face of peace and religious holiness. But, its practices are biased, prejudiced, and discriminatory. No contradictions here? No, they cherry pick what they need, when they need it.
“Religious people claim that it’s just the fundamentalists of each religion that cause problems. But there’s got to be something wrong with the religion itself if those who strictly adhere to its most fundamental principles are violent bigots and sexists.” — David G. McAfee
Hate and ignorance go hand in hand. If you subject yourself to enough groupthink programming, you can substantiate any paradox, which is another reason why pretending is harmful. Many people are born into this type of thinking. They are subject to programming as children. This programming becomes the basis for skewed thinking. They learn to trust their spiritual leaders and shun any facts or opinions that threaten their worldview.
Others accept religion during times of crisis. People in crisis are vulnerable, they are susceptible to groupthink tactics. They accept illogical and contradictory doctrines to find help and become customers and advocates of the religion. They trust prayer and pretending will provide solutions.
When you don’t get what is needed, it is their fault; they did not pray hard enough because you didn’t pretend with enough intent. It teaches people to blame the unbeliever because they are the ones causing their problems. It breeds hate and ignorance in equal measure.
Most people want a world where we live in harmony, peace, and prosperity. Instead, we live in a culture of inequity and inequality. Western thought bases the culture on leveraging many for the benefit of a few.
The philosophy of phenomenology justifies mistreating people, and many religions use this same twisted doctrine to keep their worldview in place to promote hate for profit. Prayer is pretending.
(1) Abrahamic Religions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abrahamic_religions
(2) About Intercessory Prayer: The Scientific Study of Miracles: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1924985/
(3) The Power of Faith and Prayer?: https://sciencebasedmedicine.org/the-power-of-faith-and-prayer/