Zeitgeist: The Greatest Story Ever Sold

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These multi-part videos are from a television exploration into the story of religion: the greatest story ever sold to the public by the power elites, who shamelessly use religion as a way to control the masses (includes Spanish subtitles).

Part 2 (the relationship between ancient myths and christianity and judaism; the relationship between astrology and christianity, etc.):

Part 3 (origin of the symbol of the cross, the meaning of the word "age", the many literary similarities between christian, judaic and Egyption religions, etc.):

Part 4 (similarities between christianity and the pagan religions and the lack of historical documentation for the existence of jesus; the purpose of the religious myth for controlling huge numbers of people, etc.):

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This pseudo documentary again. Had it recommended to me a while back and since I studied religions as my minor and had a separate focus on Buddhism I just felt compelled to write a little post on it a few months back, which you can find here http://www.optimalfunctioning.com/entertainment/zeitgeist-movie-theory-conspiracy.html
I take it the lack of comments on your part makes sense just because you have a self-selecting audience here on ScienceBlogs.

And an honest presentation of this material (which is only Part I) would surely have mentioned that Part II goes on to flog 9/11 conspiracy theories. That would have helped to raise the credibility of the material presented, wouldn't it? :-)

By Scott Belyea (not verified) on 25 Apr 2010 #permalink

hans: the lack of comments is probably because most of the SB readers are either in bed or their hands are engaged in hedonistic wrongdoing.

A documentary that covers similar ground, but more grounded in reality and devoid of tin-foilery is The God Who Wasn't There.

By Frank Habets (not verified) on 25 Apr 2010 #permalink

I enjoyed this. It reminds me of me when I was in my twenties. Ah, youth! :)

I always find the discussion around these topics both fascinating and disappointing. On the one hand, the idea that modern Abrahamic religions have their roots in a continuum of ancient Near Eastern religious practices ought to be obvious and unsurprising. On the other hand, it seems that whenever a young person first discovers these parallels, they become overwhelmed by pattern-seeking, just-so stories, and conspiracy theories. This then is countered by a reflexive skepticism that winds up, I think, being dismissive of the whole enterprise of History, Literature, Cultural Anthropology -- in short, the Humanities.

I think there is a story waiting to be told about the continuity of religious expression between the ancient world and the modern world. I don't think this documentary is that story, though. I no longer feel, as the filmmaker does, that I've been lied to; rather, I feel as though my sense of place has been greatly expanded. There's something grand about walking past the local fundy church, and imagining Akkadians sweeping across the Middle East, dropping little memes that took root everywhere they passed.