If you’re the least bit “plugged in” to any of the conspiracy channels on YouTube, you’ve heard about the Mandela Effect. If you haven’t heard of this before, basically it’s a belief that our reality has been altered and people have memories from the way reality used to be. (For a refresher on the Mandela Effect, I recommend this short article on Skeptic because it hits many of the high points quite well.)
I hope I don’t alienate any of my Mandela-Effect-believing readers out there, but you have to admit: it sounds crazy. And it’s not a fringe concept; it’s a widespread belief. And it’s spread beyond how “Berenstain” is/was spelled: the Mandela Effect has entered the realm of Christianity and the Bible.
Prime case in point: is it “the lion and the lamb” or “the wolf and the lamb”?
If you hadn’t ever heard of the Mandela Effect you’d probably look it up (go ahead, you’re thinking of Isaiah 11:6) and then come to a normal conclusion, which is: “I must have remembered it wrong”. To a Mandela Effect believer, the obvious explanation is that CERN must have changed our reality and the alternate plane of existence we all used to live in had “the lion and the lamb”.
Yes, that is the essence of it. But is it true? Did a mysterious force alter all sorts of things in our world – like children’s book titles and Bible verses and the spelling of “Chick-Fil-A”?
The short answer is, “No. This is stupid.”
But let’s think about it. I want to bring up two points, and then present a short video that addresses the “lion and the lamb” issue.
My first point is, we all remember things incorrectly at times. If you’re honest with yourself, you’ll admit you’ve done it in the past and you’ll do it again. Investigators (and scientists) are aware that even honest witnesses can be inaccurate. The implication is that maybe all these examples of the Mandela Effect are simply common mistakes in remembering details. (Could it be that simple??)
The second point (to complement what I said above) is: the simplest explanation of something is probably the correct one. In other words: Occam’s Razor. It’s much more likely that people are bad at remembering small details from years ago than that our entire reality has been altered by malevolent practitioners of advanced science. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say we’re probably not in a time-warp just based on the fact that a lot of people think “Kit Kat” used to have a dash.
Regarding the issue of whether it’s “wolf” or “lion” in Isaiah, my observation is that a lot of people don’t know much about the Bible – especially concerning passages they rarely (if ever) read. FWIW, a “lion” and a “lamb” do appear together in Revelation 5:5-6. But as you’ll see, it makes more sense for the passage in question to be “wolf”:
My conclusion is that the Mandela Effect is silly, doesn’t make sense, and the evidence for it is non-existent. I think it’s just a weird idea that makes for some good “click-bait”…but it’s totally false.
Maybe you disagree, and if anyone has convincing evidence otherwise (not just “I think I remember ____ differently”), I’d love to hear it. Feel free to comment below.