Questions tagged [religion]

For questions about the use of religion in a work of speculative fiction, whether the religion is a real-world one or a fictional one. Always use in conjunction with the specific work tag the question is asking about.

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1 answer
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'90s-2000s science fiction movie about a group of hackers

A group of hackers are hacking in the Pentagon/Vatican to resolve the Bible code. The one guy at the end becomes godlike. One girl, two boys and a reporter, I think.
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  • 75
20 votes
1 answer
336 views

First contact with aliens who have not fallen into original sin

I read the story in the 1970s in translation. Aliens land, meet a priest living as hermit, who talks and tries to instruct them in the faith. Everything seems to be going fine, until he reaches the ...
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26 votes
1 answer
3k views

Old site with the religious affiliations of most science fiction writers

A long time ago, when the Internet was young (*), I stumbled into a site that listed the religious affiliations of most science fiction authors, both contemporary and of the past, and bookmarked it: ...
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  • 5,206
20 votes
1 answer
357 views

Story/Novella where philosophy students invent a religion

I found this online ages ago (probably around the mid-2010s -- maybe 2017) but long ago lost the tab, title, or any identifying info and searching has been no help. The basic outline of the story went ...
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20 votes
1 answer
391 views

Short story about annoying aliens going door-to-door to promote a religion

Golden-age short story starts with a guy shutting his door on an inoffensive but boring alien going door-to door promoting his alien god. They are all over Earth, and bother people several times every ...
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39 votes
9 answers
10k views

What religious references are there in the Matrix trilogy?

I’ve been watching The Matrix, and I’ve noticed a few religious references in the movies, such as the ship named the Nebuchadnezzar (a king found in the Old Testament) and the city of Zion (also found ...
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10 votes
3 answers
970 views

Why does the protagonist of Asimov's Caves of Steel exclaim 'Jehoshaphat!' instead of 'Jesus!'?

The protagonist of Asimov's Caves of Steel, Elijah Baley, uses 'Jehoshaphat!' as an exclamation instead of 'Jesus!' throughout the book. Why does he do this? From the book, it seems that the Bible is ...
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2 votes
1 answer
733 views

Was The 4400 based loosely on Scientology?

I just finished watching the 4400 up to its last season before its cancellation. I couldn’t help but notice its overtones to what seemed to match L Ron Hubbard’s Church of Scientology religion. Were ...
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5 votes
1 answer
133 views

Story ID: Star-based computers, human thought, climate change, god and religion

I just had a dream and I can't figure out if it's just based on memories of what I've read or seen. Is anyone familiar with a plot similar to the following? So it goes: In a distant future, some ...
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13 votes
1 answer
216 views

Unknown fantasy novel, 1970s/80s where the gods of various religions are real, Christian god overthrows the pagans in ancient times

Around 1985/86 I read a book that was probably at least a few years old. It was a fantasy set in ancient times, where the pagan gods (it mostly focussed on the Greek gods) are real and interact with ...
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26 votes
1 answer
2k views

Short story: member of 'atomic priesthood' reminisces

This is a short short I remember reading, part of an anthology, possibly near the front. The main character is a member of an 'atomic priesthood', a monkish order charged in ancient times with keeping ...
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21 votes
1 answer
5k views

Why did Tolkien describe religious cults in Numenor only?

In most of J.R.R. Tolkien's works, no organized religion exists, no prayers and no worship sites, temples, churches, holy groves or similar. The monotheistic-style god Eru Ilúvatar is mostly passive, ...
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  • 525
18 votes
3 answers
1k views

Looking for a Neal Stephenson passage on religion as inoculation / vaccination / prophylactic

I recall a section in a Neal Stephenson book where a couple that secretly went to church (or at least didn't make it known) with their kids. As I recall it, they did this not because they were ...
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  • 283
1 vote
1 answer
140 views

Harry Potter and religion [duplicate]

Witch hunting was standard practice for muggles of old. One can argue that the main reason was fear of the unknown, but it is established (Beedle tales) that one major component of said fear was ...
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5 votes
0 answers
106 views

How clear is it that Tolkien chose the 25th of March for the downfall of Sauron because of its Christian significance? [duplicate]

The downfall of Sauron and the end of the War of the Ring occurred on the 25th of March in the year 3019 of the Third Age. Many scholars and critics have speculated that Tolkien chose this date ...
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24 votes
3 answers
10k views

Is Kirk’s comment about “LDS” intended to be a religious joke?

In Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), the crew find themselves in 1980’s San Francisco, and promptly realize that they are perceived as socially awkward. Kirk, in an apparent effort to explain the ...
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14 votes
1 answer
652 views

Retelling of Adam and Eve story

My dad is trying to find a short story he read in the '80s, possibly in OMNI magazine, which was a retelling of the Adam and Eve story. The story is mostly the same as it appears in the Bible, except ...
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2 votes
0 answers
106 views

Are Emily and Corvo members of the Abbey of the Everyman?

In Dishonored and Dishonored 2, the Abbey of the Everyman’s Overseers are a really powerful anti-Outsider, almost militant, group that is shown to like to murder people for such small things as having ...
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34 votes
1 answer
5k views

An average heaven where everyone has sexless golden bodies and is bored

In this story, the dying protagonist discovers that Heaven is a real, physical place, but not what he expected. On reawakening, he chutes down a miles-long slide into a bowl-shaped city that, he is ...
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10 votes
1 answer
205 views

Serpentine spaceship captain travels to start new religions

A serpentine alien travels from one solar system to another to spread his gospel of universal love. He is assisted by a First Mate who doubts the efficacy of his captain's program. They land in a ...
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8 votes
1 answer
566 views

Why didn't Captain Pike say his background with religion after asking the others in New Eden?

In Star Trek Discovery episode "New Eden" we see Captain Pike ask Joann Owosekun and Michael Burnham what their background with religion is. Joann says she grew up in a Luddite community which had ...
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4 votes
1 answer
180 views

Book about persecuted group fleeing earth, finding and settling new planet, new life, get hunted down by earth persecutors

Read a book in the mid 2000s about a group that was persecuted, Christians I believe, that accidentally discovered FTL travel. They built a ship and left Earth. They discovered a new planet, and ...
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  • 43
-3 votes
3 answers
392 views

Spinning Silver: the first Jewish protagonist in fantasy?

Naomi Novik's recent novel Spinning Silver made me wonder: is it the first fantasy novel with a Jewish main character? Or were there others before it? I am not looking for a shopping list here. ...
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11 votes
1 answer
271 views

Trying to find a Sci-Fi Short story about aliens converting to Judaism

I read this story about seven years ago for a college class, and while I remember most of the plot, I cannot recall the title or author. In this story, there is a colony of orthodox Jews and one of ...
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8 votes
1 answer
258 views

Book set on an alien planet with a symbiotic plantlife [duplicate]

I'm trying to find the name of a science-fiction book I read at least 20 years ago (late 1990s), though it was most likely a second hand book so I can't say how much older than that it might be. I can ...
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  • 83
6 votes
1 answer
131 views

Woman Jesuit priest protagonist

I am looking for the title of a sf novel that features a Jesuit who is a woman? It’s a first contact scenario, I think. I remember that the priest had shaved her head as a token of her total ...
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5 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is Khan Noonien Singh a follower of Sikhism?

In TOS Space Seed, Lt. Marla McGivers identifies Khan Noonien Singh as a Sikh. (Looking at Khan) From the northern India area, I'd guess. Probably a Sikh. They were the most fantastic warriors. ...
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4 votes
1 answer
291 views

Looking for the origin of a perspective on religion [duplicate]

I've been trying to remember where I read a perspective on religion, which I think comes from some Science Fiction author. It goes somewhat like "we have observed many species, and those that ...
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17 votes
3 answers
12k views

Why is it called the Orange Catholic Bible?

A frequently mentioned and important text in the Dune series is the Orange Catholic Bible. Having read the appendices for the first Dune, I understand why this book exists. However, I do not ...
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13 votes
1 answer
2k views

Looking for an older anime floating crosses/people? Over earth

I have this scene of an old anime stuck in my head and it’s bothering me I can’t find it. In the scene the main character looks up and sees floating crosses and light beams/ cloudy weather above earth,...
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9 votes
1 answer
264 views

Short story where a missionary preaches to an alien species that communicates via differences in chemical concentration

I'm trying to recall the name of a science fiction short story about a missionary who tries to preach to an alien whose language consists not of words but of chemical diffusion gradients. The alien ...
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8 votes
3 answers
2k views

Have there been any changes, schism, heresy or branches of religions in Planetos?

Something that I always found strange in Planetos is the fact that each religion seems united : there is no Eastern Church of the Sevens opposed to a Western Church of the Sevens for example. This is ...
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5 votes
3 answers
14k views

Is Jesus Christ ever mentioned in Supernatural?

From what religious perspective is Supernatural aproached? I've seen god, Lucifer, darkness (Amara), angels, demons... pretty much all levels from heaven to hell. Is Jesus ever mentioned? If he does ...
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7 votes
0 answers
207 views

Was Herbert Influenced by Eric Frank Russell for the Buddhislamic faith?

I have occasionally wondered whether Frank Herbert might have been influenced by Eric Frank Russell. In The Great Explosion, reference is made to followers of a crank named Kassim who tried to ...
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  • 10.8k
7 votes
1 answer
230 views

Short story about a planet with a religion of fantastic stories

I'm trying to remember the name of a short story. Humankind had explored the galaxy but there was one religion that was pretty much in charge. A religious inspector from that religion went to this one ...
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  • 71
2 votes
0 answers
98 views

Does a traditional afterlife exist in Lord of the Rings? [duplicate]

I know that, in the Lord of the Rings and associated works, Eru Ilúvatar is basically the Christian God, with Morgoth being Satan. Since Tolkien famously hated allegory, they should be understood as ...
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42 votes
4 answers
7k views

What does Aslan mean about being a bridge builder in our world?

(Building on a bit of discussion from here: Are the "wood between worlds" and Aslan's Country related in some way? ) In the Chronicles of Narnia, it is well established that Aslan's ...
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8 votes
0 answers
159 views

Fantasy series from the 80s or nineties

I am trying to remember a series of books, about three I believe, I read at least 20 years ago about a magic school / monastery. A series of magical attacks take place, where the blame is placed on a ...
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17 votes
1 answer
697 views

Last man on Earth walks with the devil

Trying to identify a short story: The last man on Earth is walking across a shattered wasteland. After a time he's joined by someone he's never met before, but our original person is still the last ...
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  • 173
14 votes
2 answers
7k views

Why is the Gayatri mantra used the BSG opening theme? Are the Cylons or the Colonists Hindu?

I (recently) watched the Battlestar Galactica TV series. It is steeped in religion and religious themes - the dialog and thoughts of characters, the objective events taking place, and the Colonists' ...
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  • 9,723
6 votes
1 answer
115 views

Title/author of fantasy novel -- the Puritans visit Ottoman Empire ? Alt. Hist

I'm looking for a female fantasy author who wrote a novel about an alternate reality in which the Puritans always ruled America, and visited the Ottoman Empire, seeking a trade deal. It's a commentary ...
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  • 63
10 votes
1 answer
397 views

Is Schönweiser, the author of the quote on religion in "The Screwfly Solution", a real person?

The Screwfly Solution is a short story by Raccoona Sheldon, in which men all over the world start killing women because they feel a religious voice is telling them it is the right thing to do. ...
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  • 101
8 votes
0 answers
282 views

Is there a source for the story of the Nephilim in "All Souls"?

In the X-Files Episode "All Souls" (S5 E17), Fr. McHugh tells Scully the story of the Nephilim. In his version, there were four Nephilim, children of a Seraph1 and a human woman, who were not "meant ...
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  • 2,577
2 votes
0 answers
106 views

Is religion "entirely" absent in the Harry Potter series? [duplicate]

I don't recall anything directly related to religion having been mentioned in the books from Philosopher's Stone to Half-Blood Prince (1-6). The only exception is that Christmas is widely celebrated. ...
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58 votes
4 answers
11k views

Why isn't the religion of R'hllor, The Lord of Light, dominant?

This has been puzzling me for a while now. Since red priests of R'hllor can, amongst many other seemingly "magical" things, bring people back from the dead, how come this religion isn't dominant ...
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  • 681
40 votes
1 answer
8k views

Are hobbits religious?

For example, elves surely know stories about their creation and some of them remember so much that their religiosity is pretty clear. But I am not sure about hobbits. Do they believe in some god/...
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  • 4,537
13 votes
1 answer
545 views

I'm looking for a short story about a monastery where people use data analysis to improve their lives

I'm looking for a short story about a monastery where people use data analysis to improve their lives, and go out into the world to investigate "anomalies". The story was set in the future, but not ...
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29 votes
6 answers
10k views

What makes the Lord of the Rings a Catholic work?

In Letter 142, Tolkien called the Lord of the Rings a "Catholic work", quote: The Lord of the Rings is of course a fundamentally religious and Catholic work; unconsciously so at first, but ...
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  • 549
25 votes
2 answers
5k views

Did any Star Trek actors have issues with the anti-religious nature of the series?

We know from the question Do Earth religions persist in Star Trek? that Gene Roddenberry wanted the world of Star Trek to be a world that had "outgrown" religion. However, some Star Trek actors, such ...
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2 votes
1 answer
1k views

How many religions did we see Sazed preach?

Throughout the first two books in the Mistborn series - and even once or twice in the third, if I recall correctly - Sazed, the scholar of historical religions, will occasionally tell other ...
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