The Quantum Pontiff

New Word for Wednesday

A word which might be useful in describing depictions of Jesus in South America:

Iconotropy noun. The misinterpretation of icons of an earlier cult by a later cult. Especially so as to bring the beliefs of the old school in line with the new school.

The monotheist bested the polytheist by repeated counterarguments of iconotropy.


  1. #1 John Sidles
    September 24, 2008

    Robert Graves (who coined the neologism iconotropy) was a classical scholar, a political conservative and a poet … not a cognitive scientist, mathematician, or physicist.

    Being conservative, Graves freighted iconotropy with negative connotations … needlessly. Because without the powerful tool of iconotropy, how can the dark forces of agnotology ever be overcome? 🙂

    To illustrate (humorously) the power of iconotropic images, consider the following two views of quantum simulation science …

    The QIT view:

    The MOR view:

    The iconotropic point being this: from either side of the door, access to new knowledge is mighty tough … we need all the help we can get! 🙂

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