Darrel Ray’s talk on the ‘God Virus’

The trip to Moseley last Saturday was enjoyable and well worth the effort. Darrel Ray is a good speaker who has given the “God Virus” talk several times over the past 6 months or so.

It has been filmed on at least 3 occasions and can be viewed online via the links below:

New York City Atheists http://nyc-atheists.org/drupal5/?q=videos

You Tube http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=darrel+ray (The talks given in San Diego and Ireland + other snippets)

I’ve not watched them myself but, of the three, the opening of the San Diego talk seemed closest to the version he gave last Saturday.

He admitted that the title of the talk (and book) was chosen to catch the eye and proved a useful framework within which he highlighted the many similarities between viral infection and the spread of religions by a mixture of hypnotism, guilt, cultural activities, peer pressure etc.

Whilst personally I found his argument (that all religions are in reality completely separate viruses that manipulate aspects of human behaviour) hard to accept, most of the talk effectively addressed the matter of “How religion infects our lives and culture”.

Copies of his book are available from Amazon.co.uk.

The talk gave me the opportunity to meet, among others, members of the Lichfield and Birmingham Humanists. The latter have an on-going project to enhance communication between all humanist/secularist groups in the Midlands and maintain a Calendar to advertise events organised by the various groups. This can be viewed at http://www.birminghamhumanists.org.uk/eventscal.htm.

Report by Bob Coalbran

The God Virus: Darrel Ray talks in Birmingham

Best-selling US author Dr Darrel Ray will present a talk on his ideas related to his new book ‘The God Virus’. on Saturday 30th October from 1pm-4pm at the Moseley Community Development Trust, The Post Office Building. 149-153 Alcester Road, Moseley, Birmingham B13 8JP.

The God Virus: How Religion Infects Our Lives and Culture

A fast paced, humorous and engaging talk from this best-selling U.S. author. Darrel will explore “even the most sensitive areas of religious infection from sexual guilt to abstinence only, from the hypnotic techniques of ministers to music’s role in infection and how it all fits together”. Darrell will be signing copies of his book.

“Darrel Ray has made a marvelous contribution to our understanding of ourselves. The description of religion as a cultural virus is not new, Darrel is the first to put the virus on a slide and pull out the microscope. The God Virus goes beyond analogy, offering a fascinating and detailed look at the wiggling, maddening virus itself how it moves, how it survives, and how and why it continues to thrive.” Dale McGowan

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