Evangelism

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Evangelism: yes, it really is this terrifying.
Preach to the choir
Religion
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Crux of the matter
Speak of the devil
An act of faith
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Evangelism (from the Greek ευαγγελος, "evangelos", "good message") involves the act of proselytizing a position — usually, but not always, a religion — on the basis of some "truth value". The term is also used for the promotion of various philosophies in politics and in technical fields, particularly in computing, and has become marketing jargon. The concept springs from the spreading of the Christian gospel (ευαγγελιον, "evangelion" — literally from roots meaning "good news").

Evangelism, as a form of public relations, tends to focus on the positives of the message it aims to spread, sometimes even misrepresenting the message to make it more palatable to newcomers.[1]

Not all religions actively engage in proselytization; while most Christian and Islamic denominations, for example, by-and-large insist on trying to bring in new members[2] (sometimes even with the threat of violence), Judaism often actually discourages conversions and Shinto — which is based more around geography than around dogma — generally lacks the concept of "conversion" altogether.

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References[edit]

  1. In particular, Scientology refers to this technique as "gradient", while the Mormon Church uses the somewhat less technical phrase "milk before meat". Both concepts implicitly recognize the difficulties that outsiders often have with accepting weird doctrines.
  2. Taking out of context, for example, Matthew 28:19-20 — "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you [...]."