Retrospectacle: A Neuroscience Blog

i-23c85571f20ccdfd921a77ac50c0c3b5-matrix.bmp The Matrix movies have a lot of religious undertones, from ‘Neo’ as a Christ-figure, the Nebuchadnezzar as their ship, Trinity as his side-kick, the name of the rebel city (Zion), and much more.

Then, I suppose it was only a matter of time until a “real religion” emerged based on the tenets of the Matrix story: Matrixism. What are the tenets of Matrixism, you might ask?

1. Belief in the prophecy of the One.

2. Acceptance of the use of psychedelics as sacrament.

3. Recognition of the semi-subjective multi-layered nature of reality.

4. Adherence to the principles of one or more of the world’s religions until such time as the One returns.

Now this religion seems to be half-joke, and quite entertaining, but I wonder, will anyone take it seriously (they claim 1600 adherents)?? Its interesting to note that other ideas are worked into Matrixism, such as ideas from Aldous Huxley’s “The Doors of Perception” and Dan Merkur’s “The Mystery of Manna: The Psychedelic Sacrament of the Bible.” Got questions? Check out their FAQ and perhaps you too can become a Pathist.

Comments

  1. #1 Minnesotachuck
    April 9, 2007

    I presume there’s a place in the Matrix Pantheon for the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

    http://flyingspaghettimonster.org/

  2. #2 Shelley
    April 9, 2007

    Well those spidery flying machine thingys do have noodly appendages…..

  3. #3 Blake Stacey
    April 9, 2007

    Which opens up endless horizons for hentai fanfic — er, did I say that out loud?

  4. #4 Mustafa Mond, FCD
    April 9, 2007

    While there are a lot of assorted religious references in The Matrix, it is as deep as mud.

  5. #5 Jon H
    April 9, 2007

    Point in favor: better screensavers than the major religions.

    (About ten years ago I and some coworkers in San Diego stopped by a surplus software store near the office. Walking in, I noticed a table prominently displaying a product called “Screen Savior”, a Jesus screen saver. I made a snarky comment, immediately followed by the proprietor saying “I wrote that”. Ouch.)

  6. #6 Tyler DiPietro
    April 9, 2007

    While there are a lot of assorted religious references in The Matrix, it is as deep as mud.

    Mud can be very deep. :)

    I’m somewhat out of the movie aficionado/literary mainstream in my opinion on the Matrix. I liked the original a lot, and thought the metaphor was used pretty well. The sequels I agree on, however, they sucked. Primarily because they went way overboard and the philosophizing was just too tacked on, while the original had a bit more ambiance to it.

    I wouldn’t put it on the same level as Blade Runner or 2001: A Space Odyssey, but I still think it was a good flick.

  7. #7 Bob Abu
    April 10, 2007

    Those wacky Columbine high school killers were big fans of the Matrix. They dressed the part when they went on their killing spree – the black trench coats remember?

    But, both Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris identified themselves as Jews. They hoped Stephen Spielberg would make a movie about their exploits after they had safely escaped to Israel.

    But in a happy ending, they changed plans and also killed themselves. Their bodies were found several hours later when the cops, heavily armed and in full body armor, finally decided it was safe enough for them to enter the school.

    Spielberg hasn’t made a movie about it yet, and even worse the Matrix sequels never lived up to to original.

  8. #8 Mustafa Mond, FCD
    April 10, 2007

    I wouldn’t put it on the same level as Blade Runner or 2001: A Space Odyssey, but I still think it was a good flick.

    Since you mention it, I thought 2001: A Space Odyssey was dismal. If you have to write a novel (which was also boring) to explain your movie, you failed.

  9. #9 TechnoRat
    April 10, 2007

    You say that this religion is “half joke” and I agree. Of course that means that this religion is also half serious. It looks to me like someone found the opportunity to make a compelling case for a religion based on the movie and went for it. If you ask me I think they did a pretty good job of it. Of course they maintained their sense of humor. But how could they not? It is based on a Hollywood movie after all.

  10. #10 Jon H
    April 10, 2007

    “Those wacky Columbine high school killers were big fans of the Matrix. They dressed the part when they went on their killing spree – the black trench coats remember?”

    The Matrix only came out a month before the killings, but the Columbine geeks and nerds were known as the “trenchcoat mafia” before that.

    In The Basketball Diaries from the mid-90s, Leonardo DiCaprio wore a black trenchcoat in a scene were he shoots up a school.

  11. #11 Robster
    April 11, 2007

    I think you all may be missing the point…

    #2. Psychedelics are sacrament.

    This is just an excuse to drop acid.

  12. #12 Shelley
    April 11, 2007

    Yeah, but what an elaborate excuse!

  13. #13 Becky
    April 11, 2007

    Seems like there’s a bit more to Matrixism than that. To say that it is just an excuse to drop acid is like saying that Catholicism is just an excuse to drink wine or that Rastafarianism is just an excuse to smoke ganja.

    What about the environmental message of Matrixism? What about how it addresses the issue of hyperreality? What about its ANTI-drug message?

  14. #14 Shelley
    April 12, 2007

    Wait, Catholicism *isn’t* just an excuse to drink wine in church???

  15. #15 Janet
    May 14, 2007

    This is a very nice post, and I want to see how others react to this.

  16. #16 Neolistic
    September 29, 2007

    The Matrix really exists! Not like the movie everyone is obsessed with. There is a fabric of reality not visible to the human eye that runs its course through the universe itself. In the year 2007, it is becoming more and more absurd to believe we are not connected in some form or another to the universe that extends beyond this galaxy! The nature of the universe will not stand for human ignorance anymore – thats why we have movies like The Matrix. To spoon feed those who need to be spoon fed.

    Ultimately, the Nature of this belongs to God.

  17. #17 Neolistic
    September 29, 2007

    No. I don’t do drugs. But to each its own…whatever you need to “jumpstart” your mind.

  18. #18 SeventhSwami
    October 8, 2007

    freedom of religion under this umbrella? I’m not sure if this counts as a religion itself… more like shamanism without dogma… which is usually a good thing.

    funny either way. =)

  19. #19 Phalse
    December 21, 2007

    Shelly Batts is smart and sexy!

  20. #20 Frezz
    October 19, 2008

    Cool!!!

  21. #21 bob
    November 25, 2008

    Wtf ???? RESPECT opinion

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