Mercerism explanation

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This is about the book "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" by Philip K. Dick. While reading this book I notice huge differences between the text and the movie (Bladerunner - 1994). This is about the fictional religion Mercerism that is the dominant religion of the futuristic lifestyle in "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?". I gave some significant thought and research to the topic of Mercerism, trying to understand its symbolism and a few other questions I thought I would try to answer with my own words here.


What is Mercerism

Simply put, Mercerism is the religion that binds the community together in this book. It is the major religion that is run by a man/thing named Mercer that preaches empathy and togetherness by the use of clever video broadcasts, and a type of technology (the empathy box) that allows other people to share in Mercer's past experience of climbing a steep hill with rocks thrown at him. I feel that Mercer is akin to Jesus. Mercer climbs the hill eternally and is pelted with rocks to reach his enlightenment at the top. Jesus was also tortured, whipped and stoned to reach his enlightenment on the cross.

Who is Mercer

Mercer is the figurehead of the religion Mercerism. Although he is defrauded in the book by Buster Friendly, it is never clear to me whether he is a real demigod or a mere human. Either way, Mercer is the one and only figure in the religion of Mercerism that is given any real focus in the story.

Why did Deckard climb the hill

Deckard, the main character in "Do Android dream of Electric Sheep?", climbs a hill near the end of the book after retiring the 6 Nexus models in a type of recreation of Mercer's journey to the top of his hill. It is never exactly clear why Deckard climbs the hill, but in my OPINION I would think it was to get a more "real" experience than the empathy box, which he never warms up to fully.

Who threw the rock?

The answer to this is never known. As far as we can tell, there is nobody near Deckard when the rock gets thrown at him on his journey to the top of his mountain. Was the rock real? Was the rock his imagination? Did Mercer himself will the rock to be thrown at Deckard? These questions are not answered by the book and are too open ended to have any answer. The rock came out of nowhere.