This article studies the (logical) structure of certain belief systems on the basis of their own claims and core beliefs. The implications and consequences of such fundamentals are discussed.
Consider the statement: “This is the only Truth” in whatever context whether it is about the existence of a single God or way to God or way of life / salvation.
The empirically observed fact is that there are various claims and claimants to the same.
The immediate conclusion is that (at most except for one, even if one was to discount the inherent absurdity of such a sweeping claim for all time to come), all such claims are necessarily and intrinsically false as there cannot exist more than one such True claim.
Being a fundamental principle of faith, such a claim is a core axiom and a foundation of the system. So, the foundation of such a system is based on a key axiom which is inherently and demonstrably false.
Hence, it becomes immediate and necessary in such a system to eliminate all ‘other’ contenders / claimants to the same statement. Moreover, the (logical) system which follows from/rests on such a false axiom is naturally inverted.
Conversion is to be seen in the specific context of the particular belief system/s:
This necessary elimination by one such contender to the inherently false claim and false axiomatic of the system, in order to present a fait accompli ‘establishing’ the ‘truth’, since no argument can ever establish the truth of such a claim, is Conversion, from the misbelievers into the faithful.
If the grass is violet, then the cow jumped over the moon:
In order to arrive at correct conclusions from a system of reasoning and arguments, one needs premises which are true and also arguments which are sound.
Consider the Truth Table
F => F is T (i)
F => T is T (ii)
T => F is F (iii)
T => T is T (iv)
Hence is such an inverted system, any nonsensical and false statement can logically and consistently be derived, (i) above, on the basis of the false premise and axiomatics.
Whereas if one has to arrive at logical and ethical statements starting from a True statement, by (iii) and (iv) above Only True statements can be derived.
Hence, in the inverted system based on the above-mentioned premise, one could logically and consistently derive various statements e.g. it requires 4 witnesses to a rape and it is correct to punish the victim. The query as to what 4 ‘gentlemen’ would be doing if there was one victim gets disposed of by the nature of the system within which such arguments are formulated and the reasoning carried out therein.
As this is a foundation and one of the core principles, i.e. an axiom, of faith, and a system on which the entire ethical, moral, legal, societal, …, values depend, are derived, discussed, interpreted or reasoned – it is evident that all of these rest on a base which in inherently and demonstrably false and a system which is inverted. Hence the systems and civilizations based on this could more appropriately be called inverted and anti-civilization.
Thus, Samuel Huntington’s proposition could more appropriately be rephrased as –
“The clash of anti-civilization with civilization and the unmaking of world order”.
Furthermore, as is evident from the Truth table above, once a person has accepted or accommodated the system with the false axiom, any argument would be provable whereas the system or person starting
from a True proposition would stand only a one in four chance of proving his point – apart from being subject to greater scrutiny as the other side anyway does not accept. This is not understood by people beginning from the True proposition in the propaganda war which would ensue – politeness and accommodation has already accepted and handed the logic as well as victory to the inverted system. Further events are just the implementation and unravelling of the inverted logic which has been accepted and which has already won.
The history of the church / Islam versus humanity is an experimental demonstration of the falsehood of the axiom and the inversion of the system.
Historically, the church was the only ‘truth’ and killed human rights, freedoms, the state, judiciary, science and scientists, culture (dark ages), excommunicated kings. Humanity and more specifically, the Christians are rediscovering their murdered freedoms – secularism, democracy, human rights, scientific and rational thinking, etc. This has happened through much pain and bloodshed through the ages and eventually, the people have in effect ex-communicated the super-inverted-state largely from their affairs, called secularism.
Secularism – the fight between humanity, more specifically between the subject peoples of the inverted system and the church in respect of the notions of the state, and by inclusion and implication on various freedoms, laws and ethics, etc. Eventually the people won and gave to themselves a ‘secular’ state, ex-communicated the church and captured it conceptually – the Vatican is another state.
This is so because it is not the church which was reformed fundamentally by the members of the church, i.e. by the Christians giving to themselves a democratic church with various freedoms that they want. The domain of the church continues to be almost everything and in respect of its fundamentals it is still the same, a super-state with the same inverted system – the only truth.
For all practical purposes most if not all ‘religions’ are ‘secular’ except for the 2 state religions and various of their sects. Essentially people have certain sets of philosophies, moral guidelines, etc. based on which one can reason out and derive various notions of rights, freedom, the state, systems, administration, …
These sets of philosophies serve the purpose of a base or guiding templates which do not necessarily impose their dogmas on the people, except in the case of the state religions. In fact, most civilizations and religions do not even have the word secularism in their native language or traditions – they do not need to.
In the case of the state religions, the notion of secularism is at best ‘containment or keeping the distance policy’ vis a vis the church. However, the word secularism itself cannot be well defined or demarcated. This is because the super-state, i.e. the church is a superset of everything including features of the state and what is purely religious or where exactly the state could possibly draw the line can in reality never be well defined. Furthermore, there are areas which are well known to be religious as well as have purely temporal implications simultaneously.
The notion of secular therefore is ab-initio inapplicable, irrelevant and void in the case of non-proseltysing religions and non-claimants to ‘the only truth’.
Consider the following table:
To do what:
Agree Agree – (i)
Agree Disagree – (ii) Democracy
Disagree Agree – (iii)
Disagree Disagree – (iv) Anti-Democratic
Clearly, democracy consists of agreeing that there are disagreements and that it is acceptable to disagree.
In contrast, the compulsion and necessity of conversion has to do with eliminating the others and with eliminating the disagreements purely as a matter of principle – they disagree that any differences have a right to exist and must necessarily be converted to ‘the only truth’. Hence, conversion is inherently anti-democratic and so will be a system based on this as a core article of faith.
The intrinsically false statement of ‘the only truth’ is equivalent to ‘conversion’ in this context, which is equivalent to eliminating other belief systems and their practitioners as a matter of principle. This is in effect the ideology of genocide of the infidel/kafir, or the ideological genocide of the infidel/kafir.
At this point it may be pertinent to pause and consider the following illustration –
(Male) domination concepts may perhaps be linked to many imbalances, crimes, …, female foeticide.
However, this is a concept of domination and not outright elimination, in case of an ideology of elimination. Would it not cause grave imbalances and have legitimized crimes and murder?
Secondly, it may not always be possible to identify – here is the problem, take this out and it is the end of domination. Similarly, it may not always be possible to identify and pull out ‘the’ thing which is the problem in every issue. The problem is the inverted axiom and that must be rejected ab initio rather than getting into unprovable arguments – a given in propaganda and warfare.
Equality, Ordering people or choices, Social Welfare and Dictatorship:
A pre-condition to equality is certain symmetry between the two or more entities that may be deemed to be equal. On the other hand, ordering a set of objects – people, choices, systems, or whatever else – has to have a pre-condition of anti-symmetry – which is evident in the key belief of the inverted system. Such a system is inherently anti-symmetric with respect to any other system, as it is the only truth and all the others are false and all the others must further be eliminated, inequality is axiomatic. Not only is inequality axiomatic but further the unequal entities are ordered – as the believers pre-destined to greatness and the misbelievers in any case very inferior and going to hell.
Hence, in such a system, ordering becomes almost synonymous with inequality, at a fundamental level.
However, it is a fact that unequal entities may not necessarily be comparable or ordered as smaller or greater and the situation as obtains above is another false position in such a system.
Arrows Impossibility Theorem is a statement about a social welfare utility function. Stated in simple terms for the lay person, it states that such a utility function which places an order on the set of choices people can exercise, which is moreover anti-symmetric (notion of less or greater than) and transitive, must necessarily be imposed or dictatorial.
The false claim as mentioned in this discussion together with the automatic designation of the infidels/ Kafirs as infidels/ Kafirs, marked for elimination and the believers as pre-destined to greatness, alongwith the ‘choices’ exercised, to eliminate the infidels/ Kafirs.
i.e. the believers = 1 (if not infinity) and the misbelievers = -1 in the set of choices.
So trivially the conditions of the theorem are satisfied and hence the welfare function, i.e. Christianity or Islam must necessarily be imposed or dictatorial. This is true for all on whom the welfare function is sought to apply – the believers and the misbelievers.
Hence, the believers of such a system may not properly be called followers, in contrast to practitioners of other open and pro-choice belief systems – there is no choice, they MUST.
Why is loyalty necessary and very fundamental to such a belief system
This is so because the basic premise is intrinsically and demonstrably false.
For the same reasons that the other belief systems must necessarily and in principle be eliminated, the believers must obviously remain absolutely loyal to such a system no matter what. For this reason it is necessary to not question at all, even in the face of contrary evidence. In other words, the subject of such a belief system must give away his ‘soul’, to the church, which ensures that the questioning and rationality
about the premises and the system, are gone along with the soul and completely subjugated to it irrespective of anything.
It is a clear understanding and enunciation of this very fact that the highest authority of the church, the pope himself, talks about ‘a harvest of souls’, which is conversion into his inverted belief system.
Loyalty and elimination hence go together and are a very basic and fundamental feature of such a system. This is reflected in the responses of such a system towards disagreements – they will seek to eliminate the source, i.e. the person who voices the opinion to which they disagree – fatwas to eliminate whether it is cartoons, prose, critique, or other such thing.
In contrast, practitioners of other (non-believer) systems seek to reason and argue out the differences – which may go out of hand at times. However, the point is that here in principle the argument is over the issue and it is the arguments which must be sorted out. Whereas in the inverted system, the argument is secondary and it is the person holding the contrary belief, who must be sorted out, by elimination. The same fundamental is at play in a sentence of ex-communication or death by authorities in such systems. In other words, for the inverted (belief) systems –
“The issue is not the issue, the issue is YOU”.
Such a system also has to be fore-closed permanently as a logical system, not subject to any questioning. Its implementation is by imposition or dictatorship and their own connotation of loyalty and elimination of the people having differences of opinion or systems.
Reasoning, rationality, freedom and democracy are opposites of such fundamentals and was rediscovered in the process of the fight between the church and the state.
From n Choose r:
The number of combinations which can be made from a set of ‘n’ objects taken ‘r’ at a time is given mathematically by nCr. Thus the number of ways ‘n’ religions could have fought, taken two at a time, is given by nC2. If one assumes there were 10 religions to start with, this number is 45, for 20 religions it is 190 and for 50 religions as one may calculate it is 1225. So these are the number of possible combination of fights between religions, taken two at a time from the initial set.
The observed facts are however that from this entire set of combinations, the only religions and their believers to have fought are primarily the subset containing the two state religions, the two converting religions.
Thus, the larger part of humanity belonging to the numerous non-converting systems, have by and large been at peace with each other so far as religious grounds and sanctions are concerned. In this multitude, there are primarily 2 systems and their analogous sects, who have been fighting on religious grounds with specific religious sanction. They have not only been fighting with others but also between and within themselves, within their own sects because any difference within is also contrary to the claim of being the only truth which must be eliminated.
It is no surprise that in the cacophony of propaganda and warfare, these 2 are primarily at the forefront of claiming that they instead are the saviours, egalitarian, good, the only truth, etc. This would make even an ignorant person suspicious of such claims, further when multitudes of their own believers and society are in poverty, face many problems apart from ethical and moral issues as well. Of course, the millions of people who have been put to death, pain, torture and humiliation of various kinds, over the ages and over many geographic locations, cultures, due to a clash of religions, cannot voice their contrary opinion for the simple reason that they, or their voice, do not exist.
It is significant that there have never been crusades, inquisitions, decrees, fatwas to eliminate, etc. between any other two religions at all on any comparable scale.
A point to be noted is that the Jews, who have been persecuted and despised in (not by) every country except for one (India), by the followers of the converting religions, do not have any such conflicts with the practitioners of any con-converting belief systems – the Hindus, Parsis, Buddhists, Sikhs, …
In all probability, if hypothetically Hinduism had been a converting religion based on such fundamentals, India would have shared the border not with China but with Russia, Korea, etc.
Definition of fundamentalism and who are the fundamentalists and extremists:
Fundamentals are the core beliefs of the system, basic principles, axiomatics, foundations. These form the basis on which other things rest, provide the structure and framework within which things may be seen to exist and reasoned.
A fundamentalist/extremist is one who carries a fundamental to the extreme. In this respect, the subjects of the converting belief systems, claimants of the only truth, may be called fundamentalists or extremists at an ideological level itself, by definition, due to the very nature of their belief and its inherent falsehood, and further that they seek to eliminate the others, no less, an extreme act in itself, simply because they exist.
The Paradox of the 2 Cannibals / The Paradox of Inclusion and Exclusion:
Consider inviting people to a feast who may be of any kind, vegans, vegetarians, non-vegetarians, or even man-eaters/cannibals. Of course the cannibals might say that they will be well behaved and will not eat up any of the invitees. Of course one knows very well that this will at best be an unreliable and foolish thing to go by, with the cannibal having made a tactical statement and only waiting for a suitable opportunity to eat a human being. Eventually the cannibal would like to see only himself, not even the other cannibal to survive. Of course no one would like to invite cannibals to a feast knowing this.
So the question and paradox is whether to exclude the exclusivists and nihilists or to include them. This has an unequivocal answer and only one answer that can sustain – exclude the cannibals. For including them would only mean suicide for the many others who are harmless.
Democracy excludes the exclusivists else it ceases to exist.
It must exclude dictatorships, totalitarian and exclusivist systems. This is a confusion which may self proclaimed ‘liberals’ have and which must be corrected.
For this reason and also because it is not the church which has reformed (see section on secularism) or become democratic and is still a super-state, with the inverted system as discussed earlier, conversion into the proselytizing religions must not be permitted at all.
The concept of (religious) minorities is relevant and generic to those regions where the dominant system of religious practice is one of the exclusivist state religions. From the foregoing account, the followers of such belief systems are in principle against the very existence of other belief systems and consider them false.
They consider all that the kafirs/infidels believe or practice to be essentially immoral and illegitimate. In such a situation, practitioners of other systems face an existential threat in principle and ideologically and, by implication, all their practices and systems face an ‘a priori’ threat simply on existential grounds, permanently, no matter what. As long as they do not convert, whatever they do they will face these kinds of overt and subliminal threats and prejudices.
Hence, in such situation, with other belief systems co-existing, it becomes necessary to protect the non-proselytising systems from the converting religions. This remains true irrespective of the numbers of which group is larger or smaller – it is a matter of who threatens and has a nihilist principle towards which other system. In reality this does not have to do with numbers but with the principle – the majority in numbers of a non-proselytising open system are still the ones who need protection from the nihilist ideology and consequent prejudices and practices of the converting religions.
However, the word (religious) minorities have again its genesis in countries where the other systems were wiped out and the dominant ones in terms of numbers are the converting religions, so it is incorrectly understood as simply applicable to religious minorities in terms of number. It has to do with the belief system. In other words, if in principle something is incorrect, it remains to be so irrespective of the number of people following it.
Furthermore, by the time people in regions where largely an open system is practised wake up to this, it becomes too late and the number (majority) is incorrectly taken to be the defining feature and the inverted logic has once again established itself. Note e.g. in India, in Muslim or Christian numerical majority states, the Hindus are not considered ‘minorities’. This is consistent with the ideology that they are the only truth and that the other systems (Hindus) must be eliminated.
Claims of Secularism, conversion into an exclusivist state religion in a pro-choice or democratic ethos:
In case of the exclusivist, totalitarian, state religions, for its subject to call him/her self secular or democratic is itself unsustainable and perverse. This is because in the case of such a system and its subject (‘follower’), both the belief system and the democratic values are supposed to exist in the same individual.
However, unlike in the case of a divorce, where any one person walking out is effectively the end of the relationship, in this case it is not 2 different individuals. Moreover, the belief system is totalitarian, a super state, so it leaves nothing out of its purview. At the same time, the belief system, i.e. the church itself has not reformed itself fundamentally and become democratic or not -totalitarian or -exclusivist and it still is very much a ‘state religion’. Hence, for such persons to talk about secularism is inherently false and schizophrenic.
Furthermore, any state, more so a democratic one – why should it at all allow another state (religion) within the state?
For these reasons, conversion into the exclusivist systems specifically must not be allowed at all, in principle.
This is apart from the observations of the Supreme Court of India which does not legitimize or protect institutionalized conversion attempts from the church, but rather protects the individual (citizen’s) right to move out of one, possibly into another belief system, if the recipient accepts. i.e. the choice and the attempt to change is from one side (the citizen) and not the other.
This is the same confusion or subterfuge that the followers of state religions resort to in order to justify their conversion efforts and seek to protect it or legitimize it – in keeping with their fundamentals.
In view of the above analysis, ‘conversion’ between non-exclusivist systems or into a non-exclusivist system may be permitted – the onus and choice, the sole right rests with the individual and not the other converting side. However, conversion into the state or exclusivist religions / systems must not be permitted at all.
The foregoing is an account of the inverted (il)logical structure, the implications (and compulsions) of systems which claim to own “The only (exclusive) truth”. To maintain the falsehood, they need to eliminate any and every other system which exists, thereby proving to be a living contradiction to its false truth claim. The necessity and obligation of converting the ‘other’ is an implication of this. Also, their own subjects (‘believers’), had better not question the truth claim as it would immediately fall. So the believers need to swear by it and take an oath of loyalty, where any doubt or divergence from which may often be on pain of death. Naturally, the exclusivity of the claim requires pre-emption of the possibility of another system coming up with some truth. At the same time giving ‘everything’ to its own subjects, so as to prevent them from looking outside, and finding other truth/s possibly. So they would claim to give complete or all the solutions. All this must be mandatorily followed by the subjects of course, else the system falls.
In other words, the absurd and false truth claim of owning “the only (exclusive) truth”
as a fundamental principle and core TENet of the system implies the following attributes – Totalitarian (mandatory, complete, all solutions), Exclusivist (the only, exclusive), Nihilist (conversion, or elimination, in peace or by war).
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The author is a researcher in the IT industry.