Another God, Dead

Via the Daily Telegraph:

When the Sun of Mankind was born, in a humble log cabin on his nation’s holiest mountain, a new bright star shone in the heavens, and a double rainbow appeared. The birds sang songs of praise in human voice. The Sun of Mankind’s father, though his mortal body is dead, rules in eternity, and his spirit is reincarnated in the Sun of Mankind. The Sun of Mankind is also known as the Great Man Who Descended From Heaven.

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to atheist North Korea.

The Sun of Mankind, in case you’re wondering, was the late Kim Jong-il, who died over the weekend following a heart attack. His father, the eternal leader who was reincarnated in his son, was Kim il Sung, who died in 1994 at the age of 82 but is still the official president. Christopher Hitchens, who sadly did not live to see Kim’s death, thus described North Korea as the only “necrocracy” in the world.

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4 Responses to Another God, Dead

  1. Human beings are inherently religious, and even officially atheistic systems will eventually create a religion for the system. The Nazis did this with Norse mythology. The Soviets were less overly religious but had many of the rituals down with the preserved body of Lenin. Not surprising that the North Koreans are farther along in the process, though, given that the system in NK has survived for so long.

  2. Andrew Stuttaford says:

    Mark, I quite agree with you that, as a species, humans are inherently religious. It’s worth noting though that, while some in the Third Reich’s hierarchy were atheists, Hitler was not, and the regime as a whole was certainly not “officially” atheistic (this is a myth that the Pope, who undoubtedly knows better, insists on perpetuating). As for the Norse mythology, that was there, but, occasional folkloric occasions apart, was probably less influential than a “German” variant of Christianity that taught that Jesus was an Aryan. If you want one book on this topic, “The Holy Reich” by Steigmann-Gall is well worth a look.

  3. Jay says:

    Style tip: For brevity, “who undoubtedly knows better, insists on perpetuating” can be replaced with “lies about.”

  4. Narr says:

    Did you see the guys at the Disunited Fantasylands HQ observing a moment of silence for the guy? Imagine the p.r. the regime can generate with that.

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