The Smudge Test—Irreligious Dolphins

Simultaneously the smartest and the dumbest animal—the mediocre humanity

The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity—William Butler Yeats

Illusory superiority

Each passing modern generation assumes we are the smartest we’ve ever been—the strongest, fastest and most advanced, intelligent civilization ever to grace the little blue dot.

Enter religion

Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies—Nietzsche

In mirror tests with dolphins, each member of the test group was exposed to their reflection. Each dolphin was then later smudged with a sharpie, then reintroduced to the mirror. The dolphins recognized the smudge and gestured in ways of disapproval and attempted removal. Awareness of self, is a sign of high intelligence. Recognizing yourself in the mirror happens at about the same time in humans as dolphins, around 2 years of age.

Had the dolphins been raised with a smudge, their first exposure to reflection would appear normal to them. All the more reason to smudge your kids early with religion. Such early exposures and continued discomfort will reflect as a normal part of life. Attempted removal will be less likely if the subject is unaware that any manipulation has taken place.

The key to any successful psychological groping is to be certain the victim is unaware (s)he has been manipulatedJim

For those that escaped juvenile indoctrination, testimony and select scripture is step two. Assure the subject they are already marked, and without the teaching and acceptance of Jesus they are nothing.

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

63 thoughts on “The Smudge Test—Irreligious Dolphins”

  1. I understand the rapport with nature and enjoy such pleasure as do many who have the time , but it’s good to get back to the arm chair and a roof with some heat and comfort , I suspect many who sleep rough would like my bed.
    Facebook is not my cup of tea but I would not deny it to those who love it , many young people enjoy all this stuff and who am I to criticize their pleasure. You are right invasive business is at work to turn a coin , that is the way of the world but we must not let that disturb our equilibrium.
    The term rat race refers to the never ending monotony of working for a living and the relatively wealthy who do have to earn can’t wait for their holidays. I remember the days when families could not afford to go abroad but took their short breaks at the local seaside.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reminds me of Ash Wednesday. Some people in my family make sure that the smudged ash cross on their foreheads are on full display. A few forget their displays of hedonistic behavior the week before during carnaval!

    Liked by 3 people

          1. He must have been a newbie at practicing this ritual. Normally they are very proud. It’s an interesting ritual to watch. Palm Sunday in towns throughout Panama they strap an effigy of Jesus to a donkey’s back and run him through town on palm leaves. I watched a donkey run for his life with a bobble head Jesus strapped to him. It kinda reminded me of a gran prix race, donkey style. As the donkey got further away and turned the corner, people ran into the street to collect the palm leaves. They make crosses and nail them to their front doors. I just shrugged my shoulders and walked on with a grin. I like to people watch.

            Liked by 2 people

            1. Hey! What can I say? Some Christians take Jesus’ command to “take up your cross and follow me” a tad more seriously than others.

              As for your palms, try an ice pack. 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

  3. Recognizing yourself in a mirror is one thing, but would they recognize a picture of themselves? This is not a criticism of your post, but a genuine question. No one, us included, know what we look like until we see a reflection of ourselves somewhere. But if we have never seen a reflection, can we know ourselves, physical appearance-wise?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. No mirrors or reflecting pools and you’d not know what you look like not recognize a photo of yourself. Interesting question. It is a learned behavior.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I was just looking at this a few weeks ago. Modern mirrors about 200 years from Germany. Ancient mirrors as old as 6000 years found made of various polished metal surfaces and polished stone, but not real common like today. 6000 years predates Adam and Eve. Weird

          Liked by 2 people

            1. Well, considering the likely possibilities that things have been going on a lot longer than we’ve been led to believe over the years, it was probably a guy named Rick. 🕶

              Liked by 1 person

            2. Apparently, Romans were quite vain.

              From The Mirror: A History:

              “Ancient Mediterranean civilizations were obsessed with beauty.”

              On the following page it goes on to note :

              Mirrors similar to Greek ones with handles, footstands, and cases have been found in the tombs of Etruscan women. As for wealthy Roman women, their inability to deprive themselves of such objects merited this reprimand by Seneca, “For a single one of these mirrors of chiseled silver or gold, inlaid with gems, women are capable of spending an amount equal to the dowry the State once offered to poor generals’ daughters!”

              Liked by 1 person

            1. I like to test my faith. I also like to stand between two mirrors so I can see into eternity. Research shows that the images that disappear in the cascade of reflections actually age—at the distant ends is an older you, and at the very end you can calculate the day of your death. Unless of course, a black cat walks under a ladder while carrying an open umbrella inside the house.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. I’d have to go all in with a red cedar smudge stick and some sage. Although burning sage is prohibitive in most tribal settings, Wicca sticks are better than prayer…I think.

              Like

        2. Our mirrors were invented in Germany some 200? years ago. Reflective bronze was used by Egyptians as far back as 3000 BCE… when you see an Ankh, that is a representation of a polished bronze hand mirror. The Ankh symbolizes life, hence one’s own reflection.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. I was fortunate in that religion is Australia is not taken into the public sphere. Believe whatever you want, but keep it to yourself. Result: so although raised catgholic, researching it, then ditching it, came with no social blowback. The American experience appears quite different.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I know this is about religious indoctrination, and it’s possible religion (organized religion) was man’s first system to use indoctrination, but the same process is used by politics, corporate propaganda and blatantly so, banking. People believe in many forces that have nothing to do with religion. Patriotism remains to fool the unwary into ‘my country, right or wrong’ and how many people continue to believe in capitalism though proven to be nothing but a massive Ponzi scheme designed and manipulated solely to enrich the already filthy rich? How many people continue to believe that peace can be achieved through wars, though knowing that wars are part and parcel of the capitalist Ponzi scheme? I have a theory that this world is ruled by three nefarious forces which rawgod aptly names, God, Government and Gold. At any time in history you will find that one of these forces is ruling the planet. Today it is “Gold”. At any time you will find the non-ruling forces aiding and abetting the ruling one until they can supplant it. In some countries, as China, Government rules. In some countries, as Saudi Arabia, Religion rules. In some countries, as in America, Gold rules. Because it favours Gold, America was able to heavily (and militaristically) influence (force) the rest of the world to recognize “Gold” (money) as the ruling standard. In other words, it was “Gold” that made America “great” (if one can say it was ever great.) At the moment, that power is ruling precariously and we see “Government” making its moves to return to the number one position, particularly in Europe. Religion aids and abets but is a long way from being a serious contender for number one spot on the throne. It will remain as a “Power” and it will goad and use the other two to its own ends but it is still on the decline. That doesn’t mean it isn’t a serious and dangerous problem in smaller groupings but our main problem today is not religion but capitalism. That is the real faith espoused by most of the planet’s population. Even today it’s what attracts people to America for they sense the flow of money and they follow it.
    It’s all indoctrination from an early age, all of it.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Great comment and I concur. We’ve mostly all got our different colored smudges don’t we? I only hope that through a small measure of awareness we could all realize what they are…The first step to solving any problem. I was talking to my brother a few years back about the capitalism problem. Complete denial! His god-given right! It’s poison runs deep.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When do you become a capitalist ? When you have excess money ( what ever that may mean ) , when you pass some assigned quantity ( how much ) , when you don’t have to earn a living ( careful it’s getting close to me ) . Perhaps when you move to China you cease to be a capitalist , but surely there are a few capitalists in Saudi they can’t all be religious can they? Tell you what I’ll call my self a socialist not a communist that sounds a bit too severe — at last I’ve found peace and I can sleep at night. The trick is get your label right if you want to sleep at night.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Well, I know it’s past time and for any changes to occur. We’re stuck here for the duration. None of the systems are desirable, and running your own life is nearly impossible being anywhere near other people. There is a better way, but will never be tried. I totally get your point. I just have this homestead mentality that I can make my own way and decisions, take care of myself, but that is hardly allowed outside the system.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Do think you could bear the loneliness Jim ? being outside the human flock with all its lunacy ? There is something attractive about others , I share nonsense every day it raises my spirits no end. A fool among fools , hoping for the best illuminated by human stupidity.
            As a young man I took to the bottle for awhile ‘ I was never deep in anything but wine ‘ it was grim but exhilarating — ah the characters I would have missed ! You are right we cannot exist without the system , so embrace it .
            ‘ Fear not lest existence closing your account and mine ,
            Should no the like no more,
            The Eternal Saki from the bowl has poured
            Millions of bubbles like us and will pour.’

            Liked by 2 people

            1. That’s fine if that’s what suites you. It doesn’t really settle well with me so I have arranged my life in the gaps and cracks. It works for me.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. If we live on the fringes , or even attempt to live outside the system , we cut ourselves off from the great mass of humanity. It’s a bit like joining a religious community of prayer and silence saying to the world I want no part of you. The internet is about connection the news is about connection , opinions are about connection , blogging is about connection , selfies are about connection, Facebook is the great connection machine.

              Like

            3. Connecting is overrated. Facebook is an invasive algorithm designed to assist your bias and create division among friends. It’s pretending. I find more contentment in a walk in the forested hills than in the city. Alone in a crowd of billions is true loneliness. Alone in the natural world is home. There is little for me in the midst of the rat race. I prefer to be a cat.

              Liked by 1 person

            4. I could not give in to the system, it just isn’t in me. Meanwhile I do use the system where I have to, especially medical care. And I know I am using the system the same way it tried to use me for much of my adult life. Fortunately I have lived 90% of my life outside or on the edges of society. I do not need much to survive, and I have the skill to survive on the edge, looking in. What I see keeps me on the outside.

              Liked by 4 people

            5. It’s not giving in Rawgod it’s taking part , we don’t have to fight the system we live within it and many are very thankful for it. It’s what globalism is all about we sink or swim together . Mr Trump wants only America to swim , such thinking is negative , he even takes this attitude a stage further and wants only the healthy contributors to swim.
              When I look in I see humanity in all its shapes , moods and societies ; I see good and evil , struggle and hopelessness and I know I’m a part of that rich tapestry of life struggling to make its own way and sense of the world.

              Liked by 1 person

            6. Whatever works for you, kersten. We each have our crosses to bear. When I look at the world around me, I see 99% failure. That’s what drives me to look for something better. I see racism, hatred, crime against life (not just humanity!), inequality, sexism, genderism, and so much more it hurts my spirit to have to admit I am a part of it. Yet it is because I am a part of it that makes me want to fix it. Respect for life, peace, hope, compassion, responsibility, those are the things I fight for. I don’t expect everyone to be like me, I do not expect anyone to like me, in fact I would see that as failure. Taking part, giving in, IMO those are being parts of the problem. I want to be part of the solution.

              Liked by 1 person

            7. @rawgod — Certainly there’s no argument about the failure. But never forget there are also triumphs. It’s a well-known fact that humans tend to thrive on misfortune and calamity, so most of the “good news” is hidden away on back pages … or in the last few minutes of a newscast. But it’s there.

              This isn’t to deny all that you wrote about racism, hatred, inequality, etc. It’s also there. But sometimes I think too many of us allow the negative vibes to fill our thoughts — to our detriment.

              I totally support your fight for “respect for life, peace, hope, compassion, responsibility.” We need more individuals like you. Too many of us just wring our hands, mutter under our breath, or complain to whoever will listen. So keep up that fight! And keep reminding the rest of us to do the same.

              Liked by 1 person

            8. I do rejoice in the triumphs when I hear of them, Nan, which is why I love Jill’s “Good People” posts.
              I think keeping the negative incidents in my thoughts helps give me the strength to fight, and keep on fighting. It turns on me occasionally, I won’t deny that, it can be very overwhelming, like hearing that kids are dying in Trumpmandias’s border detention camps.
              Thank you for your very kind words, Nan. They too help me to go on.

              Liked by 2 people

    2. Hi Sha’Tara and Jim,

      I also concur with the three nefarious forces that rawgod mentioned, namely, “God, Government and Gold”. That’s why gold coins are depicted in my new cartoon created in the parlance of political satire, recently published at https://soundeagle.wordpress.com/2017/10/18/the-quotation-fallacy/best-quotation-to-win-an-exclusive-loyal-contract-to-make-pig-boss-company-great-again/

      Religion (God), democracy (government) and capitalism (gold) are often only as good as the people who have the most power to exploit them for their selfish, greedy and small-minded ends!

      Liked by 3 people

    1. That’s always been one of my favorite episodes. An interesting side note on religion; many feel they are part of the group, like a family, have people around that have a common theme. In reality you are alone in the group. If you think your group is special just admit to unbelief. It’s like changing jobs. Once you leave you’re lucky to have one friend ever call you again. Or never.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. True. The first sixteen years of my life I was heavily involved in church-related activities. And since outside relationships were both discouraged and hampered, the only pool of ‘friends’ available to me was other church members. So when the doubts first manifest themselves around the age of fifteen, I felt utterly helpless and isolated, because expressing them openly would have brought severe ostracism. And given this transpired during the pre-Internet era, I had no knowledge of where else to seek help. The fog slowly lifted when I encountered the perspectives of non-religious people at my first part-time job a year later. One person in particular challenged many of my core beliefs and helped me negotiate the path out of religion. And as you’ve rightfully observed, all my so-called ‘friendships’ dissipated soon after I left the fold. Being shunned by people I’d known most of my life simply because I no longer shared their religious beliefs felt quite bizarre — to say the least.

        Liked by 4 people

        1. Being a part of the group is a false sense of being and the reality is you are alone in the group. But, only when you leave you fully see the ideology surpassed humanity. It’s all a fake sense of inclusion and unity. It’s pure hypocrisy.

          Liked by 2 people

    1. Sure, but after 14ish it was only another 35 years to escape. Like the count of Monte Christo, I just kept digging into other prison chambers. But, we swam out of it. Just took a crack of sunlight.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. I was never truly religious to start with since I was too young to consciously believe in a god as my parents never raised me religiously despite being Christian themselves. I mostly absorbed my Judaeo Christian upbringing from wider society and had doubts in 3rd grade. Never looked back from then 😁

      Liked by 3 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s