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Vaccination: The best of all possible worlds.

On tribal ritual

It is very significant to go to a place where you have no control, to give yourself up to authority, to let them do a ritual in which you are a participant. – Scheff


I came across this clip via the Levi Quackenboss stack from January. It’s still on Liam Scheff’s Facebook page.

As you probably know from recent stacks, I’m a Scheff fan, and I’m going through an extended Scheff phase.

I’ve watched the above clip many times. Liam is right:

“Vaccination is nothing if not a ritual”.

It turns out that Western society is not secular after all.

It swapped Christianity for Scientism.

Society cannot be secular. Humans can think of themselves as such, but thinking doesn’t make it so. We are religious, myth craving, comfort seeking, connection requiring, fearful, anxious, loneliness dreading, beings.

We require ritual passage into our tribe. It’s in the bosom of the tribe, we feel safe, warm and connected.

Baptism had to be replaced with something else. It was. Vaccination.

Priests have been replaced with Doctors.

I am remined of this comment from a reader, Tamsin to Medico-Priest

Once upon a time, before George Bernard Shaw was born, a priest was called a "cure of souls". But, people never like what priests prescribe along the lines of following the ten commandments in this life in order to live happily with God forever in the next life. People have been angry about having to abide by the more difficult revealed laws since before Jesus' birth, and angry about the laws since derived, e.g. by St. Thomas Aquinas and his fellows.

So, if there is no next life, people will want a "cure of bodies" and will devote themselves to it in this life, especially as they age past their prime. Yes, doctors are then priests who give you more of this life happily: from birth to death, without suffering, ending your life quickly if you suffer.

And her mother’s story:

My mother is not a hypochondriac, nor a germophobe. But she was trained as a nurse when doctors were gods and polio vaccines were all that kept children out of iron lungs.

I was brought up short by this a few years ago when I was visiting her to help with rehab after she had broken her hip. She was desperate to get back in to see her regular doctor after weeks of hospital doctors and rehab doctors, in order to discuss ongoing pain and whether the surgeon had properly set the pin in her hip. I drove her over to his office, and got her into the wheelchair, and we waited in the tiny exam room, and I was making small talk as we waited and waited. When he entered the room, it was like she melted. It was like I was not even there. He looked her in the eye and they talked and he reassured her as to how they could manage her pain. My mother was like a child in his hands; I was observing a pastoral process. (Backed up by pain pills of every kind for years!)

I’m also reminded of this from an interesting Kendrick post:

Mithridatism. Most people have never heard of it.

‘Mithridatism is the practice of protecting oneself against a poison by gradually self-administering non-lethal amounts. The word is derived from Mithridates VI, the King of Pontus, who so feared being poisoned that he regularly ingested small doses, aiming to develop immunity.’ From my favourite website of all time – Wikipedia. Hey, before you start, it’s good for non-contentious subjects.


Various formulations of mithridatium were painstakingly put together, in public, to ensure that no-one was cutting corners, by substituting newt for lizard – or some other such underhand substitutions. Yes, it was vitally important that mithridatium was made of pure unadulterated nonsense. No cut-price, corner-cutting nonsense here, thank you very much. It was then sold for a fortune. And people flocked to buy it.

The manufacture of mithridatium, and its variants, went on from the second century BC to the end of the eighteenth century. Or, to frame this another way. The idea of creating a substance that contained small portions of various poisons, in order to allow the body to build up immunity, and fight off all illnesses and infections, has an extremely long history.


To me, the important point I am trying to make here, is that the underlying idea behind vaccination had been around for millennia. Vaccination was, in effect, a variation on the theme of mithridatism.

But then this from Kendrick:

Instead, with Jenner came the crossroads. The point where mithridatism, homeopathy, and vaccination parted company. One works, the other two don’t.

I have a lot of time for Kendrick, and his work on cholesterol and statins, and on calling out covid BS, is second to none. But he still thinks “vaccines work”. Whatever. He’ll wake up some day, or not.

There is a 2,000 year history, of collective self-poisoning. Vaccination, as a 200 year old tradition was merely the “medicalised” reinterpretation of mithridatism.

Obviously mithridatism played second fiddle to the religions of the day, but as traditional religion fell away, especially during the last 100 years, there was a ready replacement, complete with its own cultural mythologies and tribal rituals.

As Toby Rogers put it:

The more absurd the narrative the better it functions as a ritual because it shows that the participants belong to a group.

Lastly, as Liam says, we might have the facts, and be right, but it matters not, as we do not have a substitute mythology and ritual set…as we live in the best of all possible times.

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Lies are Unbekoming
Lies are Unbekoming