A Belief is Just a Thought You Keep Having – Discordians Hail Eris!

ODiscordian Law of Fivesften described as “both an elaborate joke disguised as a religion, and as a religion disguised as an elaborate joke”, Discordianism is a Chaos-based ‘religion’, initiated circa 1958.

A simple reaction to reductionism and dualism maybe – “not in concept different from post-modernism or certain trends in the philosophy of mathematics”? Its teachings converge with Zen, the Tao and some of the more absurdist interpretations of the Rinzai school, and, like all great religions, Discordianism has a sacred book too, the ‘Principia Discordia’ (written by Malaclypse The Younger), as well as a matron deity, Eris (the ancient Greek goddess of discord, with whom the Romans identified their goddess Discordia).

The Principia Discordia often hints that Discordianism was founded as a dialectic antithesis to more popular religions based on order (the ‘Aneristic illusion’), although the rhetoric throughout the book describes chaos (the ‘Eristic illusion’) as a much more underlying impulse of the universe.

Discordian Chao symbol‘Catma’ is a general term for Discordian teachings, sayings, quotations, explanations, jokes and illustrations, as distinguished from Discordian ‘dogma’, which consists of certain specific passages from The Honest Book of Truth, (cited repeatedly in the Principia Discordia.) Discordians often use “Five tons of flax” as a catch all answer to philosophical questions, referring obliquely to a Zen story and their own ‘Law of Fives’. Positing that “All things happen in fives, or are divisible by or are multiples of five, or are somehow directly or indirectly appropriate to 5”, the Law may be seen as a practical demonstration that perception is intent-sensitive; that is, the perceiver’s intentions inform the perception. The word/symbol ‘Chao’ (pronounced similarly to ‘cow’) is a neologism coined as the singular of chaos; “To diverse gods, Do mortals bow; Holy Cow, and Wholly Chao.”

Discordians are all around you, for example Robert Anton Wilson (‘The Illuminatus! Trilogy’), The KLF, and ‘Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas’ (which includes an Erisian brand and symbols, as well as the number 23)…

Discordians believe that every single man, woman, and child on this Earth is a Pope (‘someone who is not under the authority of the authorities’).

Discordian Pope card

To join the Discordian Society;

…declare yourself what you wish, do what you like and tell us about it, or if you prefer don’t. There are no rules anywhere. The Goddess Prevails…”

Principia Discordia