DisinfoCast: Got Any Questions for Daniele Bolelli?

Writer/martial artist/college professor Daniele Bolelli will be returning to the DisinfoCast this week to talk about his new book Create Your Own Religion: A How-To Book Without Instructions.

This will be Daniele’s third appearance on the DisinfoCast, (1, 2)but you might have also heard him on The Joe Rogan Experience (1, 2, 3), The Duncan Trussell Family Hour (1, 2, 3), The Adam Carolla Show (1) or his own podcast: The Drunken Taoist. He’s a funny guy with a distinctly skewed take on religion. No starry-eyed Sky Pilot here: In his own words, “Believe it or don’t believe it, do whatever you want. It’s all bullshit.”

Anyway, I’ll be interviewing Daniele on Thursday (April 11, 2013 at 6:30 PM CST) and I’d love to ask him some of your questions. Leave them in the comments section below.

22 Comments on "DisinfoCast: Got Any Questions for Daniele Bolelli?"

  1. emperorreagan | Apr 9, 2013 at 2:05 pm |

    Which deity will need to intervene to get Jared Diamond to write back?

    I’ll have actual questions assuming I finish the new book in the next day.

    • emperorreagan | Apr 10, 2013 at 2:57 pm |

      So far the book is preaching to the converted, as far as my own attitudes towards religion. I pick what I want to form my own set of ideas (sometimes I remember where something came from, sometimes its internalized and the source is lost, like remembering the chorus of a song but not the band).

      And the primary sacrament of my church is kettle bell tabata circuits. Services are, preferably, conducted outdoors.

      I would be curious about his opinion of the state of liberal arts education at universities, given the holistic nature of his interests and his position within the university system. Is dedication to liberal arts waning in favor of a more means to an end approach to education, rather than higher education being an end in itself? Also about how internet initiatives like Coursera may affect humanities, arts, and some of the less popular social sciences (e.g. does it ultimately become a way for universities to dump less lucrative programs through sharing agreements and employ fewer anthropologists and historians?), or is it just a positive thing where more people are able to access knowledge like it’s currently portrayed?

      Just throwing more fuel on the other issues with academy he touches on.

  2. Rhoid Rager | Apr 9, 2013 at 5:36 pm |

    Here’s a question: Usury seems to be a recurrent theme in religious texts, and certainly has some relevance in our debt ‘crisis’ era. Setting aside our metaphysical qualms with religion for the moment, should we take another look at the religious admonitions against usury (defined as making money from money without labour) as a potential social solution to our current financial oppression?

    • mannyfurious | Apr 10, 2013 at 12:58 pm |

      It’s a good thought, but I just don’t know. People don’t actually “follow” religions. They just use religion to justify whatever beliefs they have. The fact that so many people have managed to somehow call themselves “Christians” while being greedy, money-hungry, little thieves is proof that people don’t actually have “religion” in the technical sense of the term. People don’t sit around and try to emulate Christ. They sit around and try to figure out how to to make Christ emulate them. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard a so-called Christian say to me, “When Christ spoke of ‘rich’ or ‘poor,’ he meant rich or poor ‘in spirit’.” Okay, keep telling yourself that.

      The question isn’t really, “What would Jesus do.” It’s: “What would I want Jesus to do.”

      Even “true believers” like Wahhabi Muslims are guilty of this. Most of their laws are pretty blatant misinterpretations or exaggerations of things found in the Koran. They twist the words to fit what they want them to mean.

      Edit: Sorry, I responded. I’m not Daniel Bolelli, obviously, and I obviously don’t get the object of this practice…..

  3. landydavis | Apr 9, 2013 at 7:33 pm |

    whta does he think about Nietzsche specifically that all externalized order or morality is a kind of bullshit that in every case, even when it sounds real fucking nice and altruistic like “don’t murder” and “share” is always intended, although the perpetrators themselves may not even be aware, to oppress others. Why does everyone on all sides of every debate start with the premise that the world is broken?

  4. outofbalanceman | Apr 9, 2013 at 9:46 pm |

    i am curious about maybe times in his life where his belief systems have been questioned within his own mind. like some turmoils that he might have had and how he conquered those possible turmoils.

  5. What are your thoughts on the Bhagavad Gita? I find it to be refreshingly tolerant. It seems to teach religious pluralism. Apparently it predates the New Testament

  6. Matt Staggs | Apr 10, 2013 at 12:01 am |

    Damn. These are some solid questions. Keep them coming.

  7. Monkey See Monkey Do | Apr 10, 2013 at 4:48 am |

    What’s more worthwhile, relevant and important to life. mythos or logos?

  8. Daniel Gill | Apr 10, 2013 at 11:54 am |

    He obviously doesn’t know dick all about Daoism . it cannot be separated from ancestor veneration and channeling of ch’i .

    • Calypso_1 | Apr 10, 2013 at 12:30 pm |

      As always, an excellent thought. What of Daoism & the channeling of chi through your ancestors dicks? Is chi related to karma? The Jainic concepts of accumulation of karmic particles is an interesting spiritual corollary to an energetic chi wave-particle duality. Is there Dark Chi?

      • Daniel Gill | Apr 11, 2013 at 2:24 pm |

        Dark ch’i is the negative empathetic channel, as opposed to positive emotions are propelled outward . However, negative emotions can be positive. you only feel the dark energy as pain if you get instant karma that your emotions are not dharmically positive. karma is instant.

        I don’t know how best to explain this but you only feel whether your emotions in communion with the cosmos are positive or negative relative to others after the reverberation is sent out and you feel the instant karma through reciprocity

        You can feel negative about something, and be reciprocated in a positive way.

        • Calypso_1 | Apr 11, 2013 at 2:48 pm |

          That is actually an interesting way of looking at it.

          • Daniel Gill | Apr 11, 2013 at 5:18 pm |

            I just started reading Ether God And Devil by Dr. Wilhelm Reich as well. It is paired with his work titled Cosmic Superimposition . I’ll be posting my impressions on his work on my blog as I read through it . I also started a new Anti Atheism-plagued Reddit subreddit called r/mediums . To do with the public information that people can access to begin practicing as shamans. but through an entirely different alternate paradigm beginning through mediumship (stuff like qi gong, or reiki, or yoga for instance) as opposed to seeking experiences one undergoes with altered states. Mediumship is not an altered state of consciousness, but forms the critical foundation of what a shaman necessarily IS, -> that being, a medium!

    • mannyfurious | Apr 10, 2013 at 1:01 pm |

      Well, that’s what religious Daoism turned into. It’s difficult to find anything in Chuang Tzu or Lao Tzu that specifies anything of the sort–particularly of ancestor veneration, which Chuang Tzu actually ridiculed on several occasions.

      • Jin The Ninja | Apr 10, 2013 at 1:34 pm |

        totally right, but the OPP is correct on the qi aspect- qi is a cosmological principle, which can’t be divorced from daoism. but i do understand ancestor veneration in this context, it began to be codified as practice either with or after the Shaman-Kings of the Shang Dynasty, probably more akin to the idea of dharma-protectors or great spirits in world shamanism- like veneration of dragons still currently practiced in daoism, it later became a thoroughly confucian practice, respect for one’s father, one’s family name, dutiful son/wife/daughter. a form of social control.

        • mannyfurious | Apr 10, 2013 at 1:46 pm |

          Good point re: qi. In my eagerness to prove my point about ancestral veneration, I ignored that the idea of qi is essential (in the truest meaning of the term) to daoism.

          Re: ancestral veneration, I think it’s a fine practice. I don’t like, however, when it becomes a form of social control or when someone tells me somebody they “have” to do it or they’re a bad person. That’s my problem with Confucianism in general. Not that the things he advocates are “wrong” in and of themselves, just that he’s so damn smug about it all. And very few actions, if any, are appropriate in all situations. Which Confucius doesn’t seem to understand.

          • Jin The Ninja | Apr 10, 2013 at 2:15 pm |

            you were totally right in what you said, i was just trying to add in that point (possibly pedantically)- which i knew you probably already understood, agreed with etc etc.

            i am totally with you on confucianism, i think it’s deeply and irreparably problematic- patriarchal, strict, controlling, severe.
            contrasted with daoism- matriarchal, permissive, flexible, and compassionate….

            confucianism is most often read as advocacy of and justification for the state, even permissive of the corrupt state as long as the ‘virtues’ of order are followed. look at the history of the bureacratic exams in china, devolved from an analysis of the analects to complete and perfect recitation of every character and passage. it became not a feature of meritocracy, but nepotism and an entrenched aristocratic class. which is why qing dynasty china fell and descended into civil war. i mean not to say it was directly Confucius’ fault or even partially, but his writings and philosophy tended to be widely promoted in the most despotic of dynasties, and his philosophy lends itself to the idea of patriarchal oppression in chinese culture.

          • Daniel Gill | Apr 11, 2013 at 2:20 pm |

            The gift of the ability to channel in my opinion actually comes from entreating the nether world with an offering of one’s own qi, akin to the Maussian obligation to reciprocate.. ie the qi is returned to you through regular ritual and re-empowerment. Thai and Vietnamese or Korean or Japanese ghost worship, even spiritualism, are the kinds of traditions to emulate to understand the nature of the dao. I also love Dr. Wilhelm Reich’s theories of orgone.

            but to say that this is all bullshit is retarded.

  9. Jennifer Stubbs | Apr 10, 2013 at 4:01 pm |

    Daniele, what is your approach when your daughter asks big questions?

  10. Herp Derp McGurt | Apr 10, 2013 at 4:37 pm |

    Not a question per se I’d be curious to hear him talk about any of the following:

    1. some of Jesus’ more confoundingly violent sayings like the Parable of the assassin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parable_of_the_assassin), Matthew 10:34, or saying 16 in the Gospel of Thomas.

    2. Alan Watts and what he (Daniele) thinks about his treatment of Daoism and eastern philosophy.

    3. The pitfalls of trying to understand eastern philosophy and religion while coming from an American or western point of view.

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