I had quite a lovely long weekend. Jesus Christ was thankfully resurrected. I didn’t have any doubts but our priest did take his time and the resurrection was a bit late. It is supposed to occur exactly at midnight. Most people (sometimes me included) go to church a little bit before that, to leave right after. According to custom, you are not supposed to eat (much) during the day because you mourn. By the time it gets close to midnight most people feel extremely hungry and don’t stay long after the joyful message of the resurrection is delivered...
Speaking of Jesus Christ, there was a very interesting program yesterday on the television. I don’t normally blog or comment on TV programs but I was surprised by it. It was called: “Derren Brown: Miracles for Sale”. According to Wikipedia, the know-it-all portal of modern times, Derren Brown is a British illusionist, mentalist, painter, writer and sceptic (yes, all that). He is one of those magicians that perform on the street and on the television. I have to admit that I am not very familiar with his work since I don’t watch telly much and this was the very first time I watched a full episode. By the way, he’s gay and fairly cute… Here’s a recent interview of his.
On this episode, he wanted to confront the so-called faith healers. These people in the name of religion, faith, Jesus or whatever you want to call it, take advantage of the believers to sell them hope. The price of this healing though is very expensive and very dangerous. There have been numerous occasions where people stopped taking their medication or spent life savings and vast amounts of money to be “healed” in the name of Jesus. There is some information here.
In order for Derren to prove that most of this healing is false and these religious ‘shows’ staged, he decided to take an inexperienced performer and make a healer out of him. Through normal casting he found an ex-diving instruction and he created a man called ‘Pastor James’. During the training period, all members of Derren’s group travelled to Texas, USA, where these faith healers are renowned to perform. In six months, ‘Pastor James’ learned how to perform in a religious gathering, hypnotise the crowd and perform ‘healing’!
The show does demonstrate how these well known healers make fortunes in the expense of human misery. The tricks they pull are well organised and they can trick masses of followers. At the end of the show, ‘Pastor James’ stages a very successful healing demonstration and does prove how this so call healing is not to be taken seriously.
However, I don’t think than any progress can easily be made. It has been proven in the past how lots of these shows are staged and the healers are imposters, but still people do get victimised in the name of religion. I do believe that lack of proper education is a key factor that unfortunately is very difficult to be provided.