Was Christianity written by a black hat?

First of all, if you are Christian and it actually loaded in well for you and runs well, I am not here to say you should unload it. Hopefully anyone who’s gotten to know me knows that I believe in using what works. Just as I might choose vi over emacs, you might choose Christianity over the hodgepodge of beliefs I am currently running that *do* work for me. That’s fine. I wish you all the best, and I don’t want to start any holy wars over here.

However, Christianity bit me. It helped participate in breaking my mind in significant and bad ways. I’ve repaired a lot of the damage – enough to actually start to understand some of the hows and whys of how I got bitten, and the question I’m left asking – not that it matters who’s fault it is – is, was this deliberate? Is this a collection of ideas and beliefs with some hostile intent, or did I just “load it wrong”?

Now, I’m not going to claim that it’s not possible that the fault is mine. I certainly have been known to make mistakes from time to time. I’m also going to observe that it’s certainly possible to write a bad belief system *without* hostile intent – the people who wrote it were wandering in the desert with very little data to go on after apparently landing on earth with no backstory. It’s easy to see how they could have made a whole lot of mistakes in authoring a religion – it’s not like there was a handy manual lying around, “Writing good religions for dummies”. It’s not like there’s even such a book lying around now that I’ve noticed.

I’ve talked about my concerns about Christianity a number of times before, but let’s examine a few of them.

1) It claims to be the only way to heaven – the truth and the life – but it clearly coexists with a bunch of other religions, many of which claim the same thing. Now, it’s entirely possible that the authors *knew* it wasn’t the only way, but still thought telling the people who were loading it in that it was the only way would make it more powerful for them. It’s also possible that given their lack of communication with other tribes, they honestly thought (the authors) that it was the only way. This tends to give us the idea that they were not divinely inspired, however. The God of my understanding is inclusive, and builds a whole lot of ways to get wherever you’re going. That’s because the God of my understanding is, frankly, us. If you hand me a document that says God is worse than us, I’m going to treat it with a whole lot of skepticism. If you hand me a document that describes a God that is genuinely better than us, I’m going to respond by trying to learn from said God.

2) It clearly contains glaring errors. If you run the numbers on Noah’s Ark, it becomes clear it’s a work of fiction *or* we’re in a hypervised environment or some other situation where changing physical constants and sizes of things and whatnot is easy to do. I don’t have a problem with the second idea – I’m not *positive* that I’m not inside a video game where the coder made a significant mistake that made the instruction manual impossible to find for example – but you can’t take Noah’s Ark on it’s surface and say, “yes, that happened” in the same reality we currently inhabit, because of a whole lot of numeric, shall we say, issues with it.

Even more significant and obvious – if you’re a engineer creating the first body of a species, you’re going to make a female. Why? It contains a debugging host environment (i.e. you can keep the power on for Baby while you debug various things like digesting, breathing, etc) AND a bootstrap environment. (Obvious statement: You can make a male body from a female body. Going the other direction has some significant issues with it)

I’m aware there’s a counterargument.. a male might be easier to make first because of the lack of a need to include any reproductive capability at all.. but I still think that a body engineer would generally make the female first if they intended to make more than one and not copy them via something like cloning.

3) The bible neglects to mention some of the best and most amazing things about the world we’re in, which we only are finding now as we study the quantum world and space and whatnot. Quantum mechanics can suggest strongly that there might not be a monolithic reality at all, that we’re all connected, and a bunch of other amazing things.

4) The document’s description of heaven falls rather flat. My heaven would have a lot of sex, a lot of music, a lot of crazy adventures like wearing various bodies (I’d love to experience being a cat and sproinging, or being a dog and having as much bandwidth to my nose as humans have to their eyes), a lot of really wild experiences that I can’t even describe yet, the ability to temporarily share a mind with another person or group of people, telepathy, I could go on.. it certainly wouldn’t be a materialist heaven with a lot of gold and ivory, because I don’t even really *like* gold and ivory that much.

Anyway, so, the net result of all this is you have a document that claims if you don’t believe it you’ll be tormented for all eternity, while simultaneously making itself very difficult to believe. It also does some other things which make it hard on the mind of someone like me, like claiming that I’m so horribly flawed that someone else had to die because of my sins. I’m not going to catalog the many dark and disturbing things between the covers, because I think other forces on the net have done a admirable job of that.

One possibility I can’t discount is that the document is intended to be multiple paths. If you want to hurt and suffer, it’s intended to lead you to that. If you want to experience a wonderful world, it’s intended to lead you to that. But, to me, it lacks a bunch of information that I’d want my $RELIGIOUS_TEXT to have, and has a bunch of information that inflicted not inconsiderable harm on my neural net.

Put simply: Christianity started a holy war inside my mind, with various factions taking various sides. Different neural nets assigned it different probabilities of truth, and I experienced considerable and visceral anger and emotional stress whenever I thought about it. I am not convinced that children should ever be exposed to it. What I’m trying to decide is, was it written by a hostile force?

I don’t think that we didn’t have malicious individuals – or black hats, if you prefer – before we had computers. I do not at all doubt that someone with malicious intent might have decided it would be entertaining or interesting to craft or modify a existing religion to their ends. One thing that makes me *especially* suspicious of the book is the bit in revelations where it says you’ll go to hell if you edit it.

Look, truth shouldn’t have to say that. Truth shouldn’t be afraid of being improved upon. As I’ve pointed out elsewhere, even someone who *honestly thought they were a all powerful God* might be inside a hypervisor and not know it. That’s the irony of the Red Pill. You just can’t know. In general, it suits me just fine at this point to say “There are good ideas in here, and I’m gonna take them, and really really bad ideas and I’m going to stay as far away from them as I can.”

I feel like I have a spiritual connection with some people and things that I can’t easily see who have taught me a lot and I am happy for their lessons. I feel like I am not someone who should be tortured for all eternity (I rather doubt if *anyone* should be tortured for *all eternity*).

One particular bit that I come up against Christians on – is the idea that God is some being separate from me. I very much feel like I am a part of God – I’m like a row of a table, a cell in a body, whatever analogy you would like to use. When I think of myself as separate from God, I feel, to use a 12-step phrase, less than. Not a part of. When I think that *we* built all this, and *I helped*, I feel pride. I also feel shame and fear, but I think those are coming from the *damaged parts of my mind* that are *determined to think they are not worthy of being part of God* *AS THE DIRECT RESULT OF CHRISTIANITY*

Now, I’m convinced, from seeing various Christians, there is a good way to load the thing, that doesn’t allow it to cause much damage. I’m not clear on whether this is about the mental space you are in when you are loading it, or your internal architecture. I think it’s entirely possible that Christianity failed to load in such a impressive way because I’m a x86 and it was written for a ARM (so to speak). If it wasn’t written with hostile intent, I’m pretty sure it was written for people with a different mental and emotional architecture than I have.

However, I feel better and better about unloading it. Which is good, because unloading something you absorbed when you were a toddler and up is hard work and definitely a task for the patient and creative. Whether or not the religion is wrong or evil, the way I had it loaded had me convinced God was evil. Especially given that what you believe most definitely colors your experience, that is *not* a good thing to have floating around your mind.

Now, one big problem I have is that in general it’s not considered polite to talk about religion, and it most definitely is a source of friction in a number of environments. However, I’ve got a religion that was pressing hard on my sanity in a whole host of bad ways, and I kind of need to talk about it as I unload it because sometimes the only way to identify infected or miswired nodes is enumeration. Now, the one good thing that I notice is that I am not alone in this.

I do definitely think I’m a lot less in Hell with Christianity mostly unloaded. I still believe in the idea of higher powers.. God, angels, what have you. I just don’t think I know very much about them. And you know what? I’d rather not know – then know something that’s provably wrong. I’d certainly rather not know than believe that a higher power was ever in favor of stoning people because they were gay. That screams the opposite of higher power to me, and it hurts my head – literally – to think about. Or makes me angry, and I don’t like the feeling of being angry, and, as we say, I don’t have to live like that today.

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