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15 Sep 2019
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06 Sep 2019
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04 Sep 2019
Buddha
03 Sep 2019
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02 Sep 2019
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01 Sep 2019
Historical Events  Religion
Historical Events  Religion
Buddha

Buddha

MMDE: Buddha was fat

Current: Buddha was not fat

Most people - especially Westerners - picture Buddha as a jolly fat man, sitting cross legged with a big round belly poking out.

So it comes as quite a surprise to them when they learn this image is completely wrong, because it's a different person altogether. You can see many images of the laughing fat guy, including ornaments and statues all over the world - and grinning at you from the corner of your local Chinese restaurant.

The Buddha was called Siddhartha Gautama and lived in India. He was born in the year 567 BC in southern Nepal. He was slim.

However, a central tenet of Buddhism is reincarnation, and Buddhists believe Gautama was but one of many incarnations of the same being. Another was a 10th century monk in China called Budai, and, you guessed it, he was the fat laughing guy.

Historical Events  Religion
Samson

Who cut off Samson's hair?

MMDE: Delilah cut off Samson's hair

Current: A servant cut off Samson's hair

Everyone knows the famous biblical story of Samson and Delilah.

Samson, a Nazirite, had been gifted huge strength and the Philistines, who were at war with his people, wanted to know where it came from. They sent Delilah, a beautiful woman, to seduce him and find it's source. After three attempts to get him to tell her, he finally did, and said it was his hair.

In the night, Samson's hair was mysteriously all cut off and he lost his great strength. But who actually cut it?

Eveyone instantly thinks it was Delilah herself who did it, but it turns out she actually ordered a male servant to sneak into his bedchamber and do it in the night, whilst he was sleeping.

Historical Events  Religion
Jesus

What was the profession of Jesus?

MMDE: Jesus was probably a carpenter

Current: Jesus was probably a stone mason

The Greek word for 'carpenter' used to describe Jesus more accurately translates to 'home builder'. Why is this significant? Because Jesus lived in Judea which was mainly stone, he was probably a stone mason and not a carpenter.

The original word used is "tekton", meaning someone who works with their hands, so obviously that could also mean carpenter. The problem is the original specific word for carpenter wasn't used, and instead one which, to confuse things further, also has a meaning for "someone who makes or fixes tools".

Some point to a misunderstanding originating in Matthew 13. The crowd asks "Is not this the carpenter's son?", but used the word "tekton". When considering most of northern Israel's buildings were made largely of stone, it turns out the word isn't the best fit.

Historical Events  Religion
Apple

What was the forbidden fruit?

MMDE: The forbidden fruit was an apple

Current: The forbidden fruit was not specified

Most people, when asked what the Forbidden Fruit in The Garden of Eden was, would say it was an apple. It's been depicted this way many times in artwork, literature, sculpture and so on down the centuries.

It comes as quite a surprise, therefore, to find out it's never been explicitly named as anything in any version of the Bible. It's always just been called "The Forbidden Fruit". Those who are sure it was named as an apple are experiencing an MMDE, which is being pointed to as a Mandela Effect.

The modern take is the fruit was actually, as in most Bible stories, an allegory which could just act as a "placeholder" for Gods word. In other words, it doesn't really matter what it actually is, what matters is that God told them not to do something yet they went ahead and did it anyway.

Historical Events  Religion
The Number of the Beast

616 or 666?

MMDE: The number of the beast has always been 666

Current: The number of the beast was once 616

Papyrus 115 is the oldest known copy of the New testament. in it, Revelation 13:18 shows the number of the beast is 616 and not the usual 666 we see today.

This comes as a huge shock to most people. Was it once 616 and some mysterious force has manipulated it down the centuries to become 666? That narrative would certainly fit with the Mandela Effect conspiracy theorists, who would say the people of the time misremembered it and it's then been passed on as an MMDE.

The Novum Testamentum Graece has it as three words, ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ, hexakósioi hexēkonta héx, meaning "six hundred sixty-six":

And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

Historical Events  Religion
Salem Witches

How were the Salem Witches executed?

MMDE: The Salem Witches were drowned or burnt at the stake

Current: The Salem Witches were hanged

The year is 1692.

Superstition in Europe regarding devilry sweeps across America, and reaches a fever pitch in Salem, Massachusetts. A group of local young women claimed others were practicing witchcraft, and so began the infamous Salem Witch trials.

By the time they were over, more than 150 men women and children were accused and 19 were executed. Eventually, they were all pardoned, but that brought little solace to the families and community as a whole.

How were they executed? The popular notion is they were all burnt at the stake, but it turns out that wasn't the case, and in fact never happened in the USA, only Europe, and even then rarely. The Salem Witches were all hanged apart from one male, who died whilst being pressed under stones refusing to confess.

Historical Events  Religion
David Soul

The Gospel of Judas Iscariot

MMDE: There is no Gospel according to Judas

Current: There is a Gospel according to Judas

A carbon dated leather-bound papyrus manuscript from 280AD was published by The National Geographic Society as The Gospel of Judas.

It was called the Codex Tchacos when first discovered in Egypt in the 1970's, after the antiquities dealer, Frieda Nussberger-Tchacos. It's in over a thousand fragments, and is thought to be a translation of an older Greek manuscript from AD 130-170. 

The contents are controversial. It is said Judas was the only disciple who was told the true message from Jesus, and far from being his betrayer was in fact acting according to the instructions of Jesus.