Matt Liston, the co-founder of Augur has unveiled a blockchain religion called 0xΩ and is based on consensus methods. Liston is serious about the venture. During the last week of May, he distributed 40 hard copies of a “flame paper.” The document described how the model of religious governance could work. There were also details on how they could be implemented.
Like most product events, the new 0xΩ religion had a launch party. It was similar to a religious ceremony. The event was held at New York City’s New Museum. There was the unveiling of what early founders of 0xΩ hope will transform into a first sacred object or “totem.”
Followers might decide they want to change parts of the blockchain religion’s texts (starting with the flame paper) or start using donations to support certain charitable causes. To prove that funds will, in fact, materialize in the real world, Avery Singer, an artist, and supporter of 0xΩ, presented a statue of a “Dogewhal” at the May 19 event, stating that future votes could decide to commission such pieces.
“Dogewhal” statuette was revealed by Artist Avery Singer at the ceremony, pointing out that works like this could be commissioned by religion members and paid for collectively through a distributed autonomous organization. Singer, who refers to Liston as a “Cryptsiah” and a “Cryptophet”, says she was drawn to the religion because of its decentralized nature needing no overall leader.
Ceremony attendants marked hyperinflated currencies of the past such as the Reichsmark of the Weimar Republic with public and private Ethereum keys perhaps as a gesture that cryptocurrency is the future of money.
The religion governance model reminds an outsider of how stakeholders may update the bylaws through a proxy vote. The model permits believers to identify, then approve, and also evolve own sacred texts through a blockchain enabled and smart contract code.
Forbes reported that donations and community consensus will all be carried out through blockchain consensus and smart contracts executed on the Ethereum platform. Liston said: “It’s a religious framework that could allow for belief sets to update much more quickly and also to democratize the relationship between membership and convergence on what everyone believes in this religion.” Adding, “The idea is you can take an existing religion, say Judaism, and you could place the scripture in a blockchain.”
Liston thinks established religions could benefit from blockchain as well, noting that they could get follower feedback on their own holy works or donation spending. Studies show that people are more generous with their donations when they know exactly where their money is going, so this sense of empowerment could, in fact, increase charitable giving from the faithful.
The cyber-religion could use democratic blockchain-based consensus to accrue and allocate funds to create religious artwork (like the Dogewhal) as well as temples and other buildings based on the wishes of the community.
This venture by Liston was might seem absurd at first, but has the potential to disrupt the multi-billion dollar industry of religion is intriguing to many, and the cult is likely to garner interest in online communities as well. According to a Giving USA report, religious donations amounted to $122.94 billion in 2016 in the US alone.