Thursday, October 6, 2011

“Look!! It’s Jesus!!” He's everywhere, He's everywhere!!!

The human brain is a marvelous thing. But in the cranium of the wrong people it becomes a source of confusion and delusion that is so strong, so powerful, that it transcends all reason.

We have all watched clouds pass on a summer’s day, and pointed at the various faces and figures they seem to morph in and out of. Most of us have looked at the figure of a slab or marble, or board of pine wood and imagined the grains or the knots looking back at us like eyes in a face. The “man in the moon” is readily identifiable to us.

It’s perfectly normal. The human brain has accustomed itself to affixing a recognizable image to certain random patterns, especially those that resemble the human face. Social scientists attribute this to an ancient survival instinct where being able to identify a friend’s or foe’s face in an instant, even if partially concealed, could mean the difference between life and instant death... for someone.

This phenomenon is called Pareidolia: The tendency to interpret a vague stimulus as something known to the observer, such as interpreting marks on Mars as canals, seeing shapes in clouds, or hearing hidden messages in reversed music.

But unlike rational thinking people who dismiss the image of Mickey Mouse, or the naked torso of Kim Kardasian in a pile of steaming dog feces as simply a natural and normal trick of the mind, to the religious it’s much more serious and meaningful.

We’ve all seen or heard about the religious’ tendency to see the Western European interpretation of the likeness of Jesus or Mary in grilled cheese sandwiches, in stains on concrete buildings, in the warped glass of a building, or on an outhouse floor. Not surprisingly these images appear usually to devout Christians.

No surprise either that an equally devout Muslim will just as readily see the name of Allah, in Arabic Naskh script, in things like tree bark, the arrangement of fruit seeds, clouds, or in a rash on their kid’s ass. Google “name of Allah in nature” and the examples are endless, and remarkably idiotic.

The Muslim won’t see the face of Jesus or Mary in their slab of burnt camel meat, and the Christian sure isn’t going to see Allah’s name scrawled in his grits and hog jowls. They will only pick up on imagery of their preferred religious icon. Oh sure, they’ll see Mickey Mouse in a cloud just like normal folk, and dismiss it as a natural event. But when Jesus floats by wearing a crown of thorns, a diaper, and carrying a cross ...well, THAT’S a sign from Gawd! What exactly it’s a sign of is determined by how mentally impaired and religiously stupefied one is. That, or their respective denomination.

What’s the harm in this? None as far as I’m concerned or can discern. It’s simply a by product of the delusion of religion which makes it’s adherents all too ready to accept a supernatural explanation for natural events. Besides, it’s entertaining and gives us just one more reason to laugh at the feeble minds that are attracted to, or created by, supernatural belief.

Yep, harmless until the day the addled mind of some religiously afflicted drone sees Jesus in a pool of his own vomit while listening to a recording of a Christian rock band played backwards that’s telling him that ripping off a few hundred rounds from his AK at the local NASCAR race is God’s will.

Crazy religionists.


NewEnglandBob said...

"Yep, harmless until the day the addled mind of some religiously afflicted drone sees Jesus in a pool of his own vomit while listening to a recording of a Christian rock band played backwards that’s telling him that ripping off a few hundred rounds from his AK at the local NASCAR race is God’s will."

Is that a bad thing? After all, it is a NASCAR race.

Dromedary Hump said...

good point.

Leo said...

Pareidolia will never go away - our brains are too hard-wired to see patterns in data, even where there's nothing to suggest it beyond imagination.

tiNstAg said...

Thanks Hump, this picture had me in tears of laughter. To use British vernacular, "Surely this is the bum of dog?"

Anonymous said...

I was told a tale by my mother when I was much, much younger that in the 1930's there was a bit of a flap in Huddersfield, where I grew up, apparently during one summer, on moonlit nights a 'ghostly figure' was seen 'swaying gently' on a church door. Needless to say it got into the local press, with verifying photos, and quite a crowd gathered at the appropriate time (full moon) to see if this apparition would re-appear.

The vicar of the church and local priests attended and I don't know if they invoked the Almighty but eventually one rational 'soul' walked up to the door and turned around and noticed that the moon was shining through some trees in the churchyard and casting a shadow on the door. The gap between the shadows, surprise surprise, was exactly the shape of the apparition. (Spoil sport!)

Well, every Dog has his day.


Anonymous said...

Get a scooper. Jesus is about to "vomit" on the lawn.

Anonymous said...

In our small town a few years ago, people were seeing Jesus in a shop window in the evening. Crowds every night kept getting bigger. Finally the shop owner across the street quit turning on his outdoor security light so early, and the "image" disappeared. Even after he actually turned the light off while the crowd was there, the mere fact that the light's reflection looked like Jesus makes it remain as a miracle to many.

Lisa said...

UFO's, too. In the southern hemisphere people are likely to see crosses in the sky. A more rational mind sees a diploid oval shape (think flying saucer). This suggests that thoughts themselves are malleable. Scary.

Engineer of Knowledge said...

Hello Hump,
For those who believe in fairy tails and ignore science facts are a hopeless cause.

That being said I am currently reading "Why Evolution is True" bu Jerry A. Coyne. A very good read and you should check it out.

Anonymous said...

Let me start by saying that I am an atheist. Now, before we did our home remodeling, there was something strange on our bathroom door. On the inside, in the patterns of the grain in the wood, was what even I would interprit as an image of Jesus. I should have put out the word immediately and charged $10.00 a crack for someone to sit on my toilet and stare at the image for 3 minutes. I probably would have gotten a lot of bites.

Dromedary Hump said...

a "crack"!!??? LOL!!! pleads tell me that was an accidentlal pun, it makes it ten times more funny.

I certainly hope you saved it...It could be worth big bucks on ebay.

It's normal for all of us to see things we can identify from life experiences in inatimate objects. The difference is when you drop to your knees, start mumbling prayers, and call the news media that Jesus is in your bathroom. Then you have issues.