Fred Patten on mythical creatures and Happy Science of Japan.
by Patch O'Furr
From the archive: Fred Patten, who passed away in late 2018, was a furry fandom founder who was also key for importing anime to the USA in the 1970’s and preparing it for English speaking audiences. As a historian and fan, Fred spoke to fellow researchers overseas. This led to discussing obscure traditions and customs. Occasionally they would come up about stories he was considering, but were too footnotey to add to the main articles. Below is the first of two interesting side topics, Happy Science of Japan. Coming next is Mandaean religion of Iraq, with 60-70,000 members worldwide. Fred suggests its mythology could be “a whole new area for furry artists and writers”. – Patch
Fred’s Happy Science story (6/25/15)
I don’t think I’ve ever told you about my encounter with the Happy Science religion.
This is more anime than furry-related.
Around 1995, give or take five years, I was contacted by a Japanese group. They had just released an animated theatrical feature in Japan that was #1 at the box office for two weeks, and they were trying to get U.S. distribution for it. They were about to have a Japanese-community screening of an English-subtitled print. Did I want to attend it? I did.
There were about 100 people present, all Japanese except me. It seemed less like a gathering of anime fans than a church service. It was. I soon realized that I was also the only non-believer present, and that it was a Japanese extremist religion roughly equivalent to Scientology. The movie was about the Greek god Hermes, but in this he was presented as a historical figure. He was friends with Thesus, and the bull-headed Minotaur was also a historical figure. I don’t believe in laughing about another religion’s beliefs, especially when I’m surrounded by its believers, so I kept a straight face. After the screening, I was given a copy of their Bible, The Laws of the Sun, which I still have.
The movie, Hermes: Wings of Love, never did get U.S. distribution, but it’s on YouTube today.
According to The Laws of the Sun, humanity migrated to Earth from Venus in flying saucers. Satan is a furry; an immortal evil cat-man general from the Andromeda galaxy. The reason the dinosaurs vanished was that they were big-game hunted to extinction by Satan’s followers from their flying saucers. The Laws of the Sun is written by the head of the Happy Science church, a.k.a. the Institute for Research into Human Happiness or several other translations. He claims to be the reincarnation of Gilgamesh, Moses, Solomon, Homer, Socrates, Plato, Hermes, Aristotle, Julius Caesar, Jesus Christ, and several other famous people including Sir Isaac Newton and Thomas Edison.
Happy Science is tiny in America, but it claims ten million parishioners in Japan. Every few years it raises enough money to commission Toei Animation, the largest animation studio in Japan, to make a top-quality theatrical feature. All of its parishioners go to see it, so it’s #1 at the box office for two or three weeks.
The reason that I’m bringing this up now is that Happy Science is about to release their latest movie on October 10th in Japan, and they’re looking for a U.S. release again. The Laws of the Universe, Part 0.
Ray, Anna, Tyler, Halle, and Eisuke are five high school students who are suddenly wrapped up in a mysterious incident. An alien species called Grey abducts Halle’s sister and embeds her with a special chip inside her brain. The five stand up to save Halle’s sister and try to reveal the existence of aliens, but continue to be met with mysterious events.
The high school students’ story progresses into a shocking development!
What truths hide on the dark side of the moon? What are the true intentions of the aliens that are infiltrating America, Russia and China? What is the true crisis that is closing in on Earth and what hope can we have towards the future!? Going beyond the last movie, The Mystical Laws, – The Laws of the Universe – Part 0 reveals stunning truth from beyond the star in animation form!
People of Earth, you cannot afford to miss this movie!
I don’t think that there’s much that could be called furry here — maybe the alien species called Grey? Anyhow, I can probably get you more information about it, especially closer to the release date.
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