Today’s “Le Monde” (June 25/26), France’s most respected daily newspaper, carries a serious article entitled : “In Switzerland, People Go to See their Seer the Way They Go to See their Dentist”. As the principal theme of this Blog is overcoming blindfaithblindfolly and learning to see, I thought it worth sharing with you.
A See-r is literally someone who claims to be able to “see” the future. The lady who wrote the article says she sees a Seer once every two years (150 euros per seance) to seek, she admits, a measure of reassurance about what is going to happen over the following six months. She gives several examples and explicitly states that “if I believe, it is simply because what they tell me often happens”. One prophecy concerned the fact that one of her friends would have a heart-attack. Naturally, one of them did . . . Another foretold a minor accident in her car on a rainy day. Sure enough, she had a fender-bender – not unusual, I suspect, on icy Swiss mountain roads. She claims not to be “completely gullible” but admits to needing “a small dose of the irrational” (!). All good fun, I suppose. But this 52-year old industrial saleswoman does not seem to recognize the extent of her credulity.
Religions do a brisk business with prophecy, as we saw in “Prophets for Profit”. The certitude they claim is not based on tarot cards, tea-leaves or crystal balls, but on the infallible word of God, which it would be blasphemy to deny. The trouble, of course, is that biblical prophecy is no more guaranteed than the elucubrations of the fortune-teller. Believers have been duped into believing, without an iota of evidence, that the future, as bleak as it may be for many, will offer them at least an after-life of eternal happiness.
Now it’s my turn to turn into a Seer and offer my own crystaline predictions : 1. People will continue to pay the clergy to tell them what they want to hear, the way the Swiss fortune-tellers tell their gullible, paying clients that they have every reason not to worry and be happy. 2. Suckers will continue to be born every day.