Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Religious beliefs protected by secret forcefield

Researchers at the University of Chicago reported today their findings that religious beliefs are protected by a secret forcefield. The discovery is a breakthrough as it goes a long way to explaining a question which has consistently troubled academics. Political views, culinary trends, African American baby names, and musical preferences are all considered by most to be debatable and dissectible in the public forum. Whence the invulnerability of religious dogma?

The Force be with you

How the defense mechanism was discovered is currently the question most frequently fielded by the team. The breakthrough occurred during a debate hosted by Temple University on the matter of evolution v. intelligent design. When, halfway through the debate, the representative for evolution asked “how do you explain the fact that vestigial leg bones in whales clearly show the gradual loss of posterior limbs across the fossil record, in favor of fins more suited for submarine locomotion?”, his opposite number exclaimed “spatula!” and began to whistle the theme from NBC’s Cheers. Spectators described seeing a green flash, and then reported a cozy sensation as they unanimously accepted his rebuttal.

The nature of the forcefield is hard to fathom by those who have not experienced it. Protected individuals describe it as a warm, fuzzy feeling of self-righteousness, not unlike being drunk. Long term forcefield enthusiast Janet Gates described it as far preferable to being without a field. “Once you’re protected, you no longer have to think for yourself. We all just sort of hold hands and pray, knowing nothing can ever harm us”.

The researchers were also quick to warn that they suspect the forcefield to be deflective, in that the energy of an assault on it can bounce off in any direction at all. Singed Danish ambassadors have remarked that they were surprised that lighthearted jokes which they didn't even make ricocheted off the forcefield and burned down their embassies.

Strength in numbers

Interestingly, the strength of the forcefield seems to depend proportionally on the popularity of the belief. Thus, claiming over 33% of the world’s population for itself, Christianity enjoys a forcefield 63% stronger than that of Islam, which represents only 20.3%. While a Mormon spokesman argued today that their forcefield was strengthening faster than any other religion, this view has been derided by the University’s team. The team’s leader, Professor Jeffrey Spencer, qualified the findings by saying that:

“About 97% of the Mormon growth rate is attributable to extreme levels of breeding within the faith, known as hyperprogenization. Two percent of converted Mormons are thought to be barnyard animals, and there is a one percent margin of error. Since converted followers comprise only zero percent, we can conclude that Mormon views are not at all popular. Relying on that 97% to strengthen your defenses is like raising yourself by your own bootstraps”.

He concluded by saying that Mormon beliefs are thus completely open for ridicule. “It’s like a turkey shoot”.

A force to be reckoned with

The discovery of the forcefield could be just the answer for politicians trying to shore up their credibility. A junior senator from Texas has admitted that the Republican Party is considering adopting heraldry and arcane rituals to increase the chances of it surviving after imminent defeat on Election Day. But junior senators anxious about this strategy are resorting to proliferating ‘In God We Trust’ wall hangings around the Capitol by way of extra insurance.

A believer demonstrating the forcefield

Frodo is reportedly pleased with the discovery. Having lost His invisibility after destroying the Ring of Power, He has had to make do with His own wits and rhetorical skills. But the prospect of invincibility is tantalizing, and He believes it will go great with His magical elvish cloak.

No comments: