Do faiths or spiritual paths engage in branding – and by extension, in marketing and advertising? Although it may not be obvious, it would seem they do, though they may not use such “commercial” terms as marketing, branding, and advertising. For, aren’t most of the world’s faiths instantly recognizable by a symbol (such as ‘Om’ in Hinduism and the cross in Christianity) and to an equally good extent by attire (turban in Sikhism), attitudes (non-alcoholism in Islam), and articles of faith (worshipping beads in many faiths)?
Similarly, faiths and spiritual paths engage in marketing and advertising too (again, they may not call it that), the intended purpose being to spread the goodness and draw people – followers and new – to their virtues.
I think you get the point I’m trying to make, so will rest this here, and also before this begins going down the sensitivity path. For that is not the purpose of this post.
What this post is about is…. While the spiritual me found my first Infinipath session very, very resonating, the advertising me has since then been intrigued by Infinitheism’s branding – or symbols and representations, if “branding” sounds commercialistic. (That’s why this comes under ‘Irfanvertising’ and not ‘Irfananta’.)
So, here’s the way I see it…
The purpose of Infinitheism, as I see it and also understand from the site and the one Infinipath session I went for, is to help you experience growth and abundance in every aspect of your life. This, by helping you utilize the infinite potential in you.
For its purpose, the name works very, very well. The word ‘infinity’ and its meaning themselves denote and promise much. When you build that into a spiritual path, the result can only invoke positive feelings: You could experience infinite happiness, success, peace… The name makes infinisense.
In advertising, the slogan or baseline spells out the promise of the brand. And these days, brands typically go for an emotional connect. Right from Coke’s ‘Open Happiness’ to SnapDeal’s ‘Dil ka Deal’. Infinitheism’s promise has the highest emotional and spiritual connect: In It He Is. Derived from the name (these letters appear in sequence within the name – INFINITHEISM), it bears the promise of connecting with the Divinity… to infinity.
To me, the logo (or symbol, if logo sounds “lower-order”) for Infinitheism, the red ellipsis (three dots signifying continuity) resonates the most. When asked to design the symbol for something connoting ‘infinity’, most people would start with the symbol for infinity, the constant loop, and end with adding a little something to it, to lend it their touch. (For my blog logo, I began with a speech blurb in the shape of the infinity loop, but finding it the first thing anyone would have thought about, chucked it and eventually came up with the concept of curious eyes.)
The Infinitheism symbol is a refreshing departure from the standard. (That could be because the path itself aims to be a departure from “standard” faith and practice.) The red ellipsis is known as Ratria and denotes perpetuity, continuity, and never-ending evolution of the mind, body, and soul. To me, it signifies the abundance, growth, and progress that the faith promises. Plus, red always signifies an abundance of energy.
In addition, there is a single red circle with a graphic form of Mahatria Ra’s meditative face, denoting him as the founder and leader of the path.
A good, successful brand finds itself forging extensions after a period of time, or in this case, divining further spiritual offerings.
In Infinitheism, apart from ‘He’ being there, you also find four i’s. These can also be seen as four 1’s: 1111, leading to 11:11 am being divined as the sacred minute in the day. If a follower, the path recommends you engage in silence and meditation during this minute. Apart from Infiniminute, the concept of the four i’s has also led to the naming of other spiritual offerings, such as Infinimusic and Infinimagazine.
Finally, there is the program, This and That (TAT). It aims to reconcile the paradoxes in life – family vs career, spirituality vs materialism, self vs others – so that you don’t have to give up one for the other. The program has the perfect symbol for this, at once connoting its name and promise – the letters TAT forming a balance.
As an adman, I am infini-impressed. As a spiritual seeker, I already have been.
If the attempt to look at a spiritual path through the lens of “materialistic” professions such as marketing and advertising seems a stretch, do take a look at what one of my ex-bosses, Ambi Parameswaran, Executive Director (ED), FCB-Ulka and President, Advertising Agencies’ Association of India (AAAI), has to say about the “intersection of religion and marketing/advertising” in his book, For God’s Sake.
To know more about infinitheism, visit: http://www.infinitheism.com/
To know more about TAT, go to: http://infinitat.com/