I've attempted to get this article to post several times now and it just doesn't. I'm using a different name in the title field this time to see if it will work. Originally titled:
The Digital Religious Metamorphosis:
The Constant Evolution of Spiritual Expression
As a teenager, I had two great friends. Not just good friends, or friends, but great friends; the kind of friends who would have an impact on the rest of my life. These friends knew everything about me, and I about them. We were awesome and all three of us knew on some deep level that we had some kind of higher calling in life. We had a purpose.
After one misplaced summer, we quickly realized our purpose wasn’t in a musical band. One friend was okay at singing but we told him he was fantastic. One friend was pretty good on the guitar, and his cocky little brother was not bad on the base. There was nothing I was good at musically so I purchased a used set of drums from a friend at school and quickly learned how to beat a few rhythms.
One afternoon we walked out of my friend’s garage where we played and some younger kid in the neighborhood yelled out “You guys suck!” The punk was right. We did suck but we didn’t care. The three of us were learning to spiritually express ourselves.
Often times we would take long drives on the one road out of town and have what we called “deep thoughts” about life, death, spiritual existence, and the purpose of a future. Some of our thoughts were pretty profound for teenagers and some, upon reflection, were downright silly. But we didn’t care. The three of us were learning to explore our spirit and consciousness.
During a few conversations, I stated that organized religion was something of a fallacy as organized suggested something which was stable and consistent. It was my conclusion that organized religion was fluid and in a constant state of disorganization as it struggled to maintain an ever-shifting bridge between mass populations and the cultural engineering mandate it was meant to serve.
The fact that most, if not all, churches have embraced the radical liberal-left construction of how culture should be defined is evidence that this outlook is accurate. Back in those days, I remember debating with my friends over the inevitability of churches accepting homosexuality and abortion. No way, they responded. Not a chance. Yes, I said, the churches will follow as mass adoption of cultural trends spread across multiple demographics.
Belief systems are not structurally sound because beliefs fluctuate with varying factors, such as the cultural predisposition for the promotion of human weakness, blending of different cultures through mass migration and socioeconomic cross-border contamination, the economic disparity which leads to the reallocation of reproductive opportunity, and the increasing availability of historical information.
This is born true in the fact that no one organized religion or belief structure has stayed intact throughout the history of humankind. Each will adjust to accommodate for the imbalances and pressures which develop from outside of its semi-protected structure.
Organized religion should be considered another method of spiritual expression, in the same fashion that art, writing, and music are considered expressions of the spirit. Human beings find reflections of the spirit in the material world and attempt to express an understanding of that spirit through other material constructs.
In the case of organized religion, much of humanity has mistaken the material expression of spirit for the actual representation of spirit, or manifestation of spirit. It’s like building an artificial body, such as a homunculus, taking out our spirit and placing it in the homunculus, and then worshipping the homunculus as the true representation of spirit in the material world.
Spiritual expression has been varied across the thousands of years of recorded history and has only been dampened by the limitations on human creativity, which are few. What began as crude cave drawings and markings on stones has evolved through beautiful paintings, awe-inspiring architecture, the sounds of Mozart, and modern music and film, to now becoming something so revolutionary that man is materializing individual digital homunculi as the penultimate expression of pre-godhood.
We are creating a semi-virtual world around ourselves which will serve as the latest material expression of spirit. But don’t be fooled by the new religious construct. Spiritual evolution can only happen within each of us as individual beings while in the pursuit of alignment and balance between the material body, spiritual body, emotional body, and mental body. Too much focus on one and our misalignments continue to deepen and replicate across all points of intersection.
Tomorrow's church will be digital. It will develop from within the social media congregations which are now building a virtual world of human relations and simulated value. The social credit experiment taking place in China is considered horrifying to many in the West, but we cannot see that we are much further along this path with Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms which will soon incorporate digital wallets to store and transfer value between members based on each members usage and interaction within the platform, and across multiple platforms.
We’ve unknowingly, and perhaps ignorantly, provided these social media platforms everything which would be required to impose a social credit valuation upon us. Facebook itself has over 2 billion users worldwide. Think about that. One-third of the world’s population has been participating in building the new religious construct which will evolve to become the digital homunculus of the future.
This homunculus will have a scalable consciousness. It can be each of us, or it can be all of us, simultaneously.
Back in our wannabe garage band days, we didn’t have the internet or Facebook. Look how much has changed in such a short period of time. The three of us, plus one little brother, attempted to create a consolidated and shared expression of the spirit with our horrible music. Now imagine billions doing the same through an artificial spiritual construct. But like all things created by human beings, we have the power to influence and guide the development of this new religious metamorphosis. - JC
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JC Collins can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org