Tuesday, July 11, 2006


Four types of fervor that drive me to nausea & rant:

1. Religious (particularly fundamental or evangelical Christian)
2. Patriotic (particularly American
3. Sports fanaticism (e.g. World Cup
4. Militaristic*

Of course, I can tolerate each of the above in moderation. Religion can be nice when... {racks brain trying to think of a time when religion can be nice} ...when stirring church music makes you Wonder!

Patriotism can be nice when it makes you feel that you're part of a united throng with the same ideals and shared culture (although I would say that's almost entirely illusion *sigh*).

Sports can be nice when... well, just go look at Image #26 on the CBC site I linked to. Those Italian fans look great - and happy! (But if their team had lost?)

The military can even be nice....

...when its used to enhance fiction. My favorite TV show, Battlestar Galactica, is extremely pro-military. In fact, it actually plays upon three of the above fervors - religious, miliaristic, and patriotic.

But for the most part the 4 Fervors often across as: horribly arrogant, intellectually brainwashed, disgustingly smug, and frighteningly, irrationally, excessively zealous.


*I'm presently reading Starship Troopers - the ultimate in pro-military fiction - and Robert Heinlein is once again pissing me off with all of his arrogant military propaganda. (I love to hate him.)


Elliot said...

Heinlein = [shudder]

Re: religious fervor - I'm a big fan of Bishop Butler: "Sir, pretending to the gifts of the Holy Spirit is a horrid thing, a very horrid thing!"

And I would distinguish between fervor and the regular exercise of each of those things. You jump from criticizing "fervor" to critiquing sports, religion, military, patriotism *themselves.* Not every military commander is a fervent gun nut, nor is every religious person a fervent fanatic (see Bishop Butler above). Sports fans don't have to be crazy people driving around honking waving flags and cheering.

Yeah, I live near a Portuguese neighborhood...

Anactoria said...

All I know is, after reading (part of) Starship Troopers, I could never be in the military.

Its the crazy sports fans I'm addressing. :P

And by religious fervor I meant to add in "people who read religion into EVERYTHING!"



I know, I know, I know - the world is full of religous symbolism and meaning.

Elliot said...

Well, not full of, exactly. But there's enough to keep me occupied. :-) Though I do agree that people do over-interpret things sometimes.

You've got to remember that, on my blog at least, I'm purposefully focusing on that kind of symbolism! :-) It's not "The Blog of Economic Thought" or "The Biology Blog!" If it were, I'd be writing about evolutionary psychology and how office cubicles are actually like multi-celled beings. Or whatever. ;-)

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