Search this Topic:
Nov 13 11 7:52 PM
There is no gray area when it comes to molesting a child, there are no circumstances which dilute its evil.
We know that, because we’re not in a cult.
Although a different shade of wrong, there is also no justification for defrauding people of their money, for using the weapon of deception to rob people.
We, society at large, recognize "wrong"; whether it’s sexually abusing children, or 21st century "armed" robbery, or a group of individuals, whether cops or gang members, beating on a lone helpless victim, we can identify "wrong" when we see it.
Because we are not members of a cult.
The norms, and rules of cults, differ from those of "normal" society. Cults have different interpretations of "right and wrong", and cult members are brainwashed…are conditioned, into subscribing to these abnormal and often harmful beliefs. Cults often suffer from a collective hubris if you will, which renders its members blind to the insanity, oblivious, or even worse-apathetic towards the damage their deviant behavior is causing.
Sometimes cults are easy to spot, there is uniformity in terms of dress and behavior, there is a central location, and of course, there is almost invariably a charismatic leader and/or object of worship.
Other times, they fly under the radar, often benefiting from a credible and revered title-such as,
Sometimes, the charismatic cult leader is widely respected; say a Football Coach, or a CEO…or a Priest. Sometimes the "object of worship" is inherently innocuous, say a win/loss record, or money.
And in such instances, good people often unknowingly "drink the Kool-Aid"; they, by way of membership, take harmful vows of silence, surrender their moral compasses, and pledge allegiance to the welfare of the Cult.
They learn to "look the other way", they become skilled at rationalizing, at making excuses, and they inadvertently serve as enablers.
And so do we, we, the non-cult members of society, serve as enablers.
When we fail to expose cults, we enable them, when we worship and idolize the products of their deviance, we enable them, when we make excuses for the inexcusable, or rationalize the irrational, we enable them.
Too many at Penn State University, whether school officials, coaches, students, alumni, or simply football fans, have drank the Kool-Aid.
We must avoid doing the same.
Whether it's Penn State, or "an organization of God", or a big corporation, or some other thinly veiled "main stream" cult, we must never serve as enablers.
We must never drink the Kool-Aid.
Be Good Friends,
Nov 15 11 7:45 PM
*Poster's note: Just when the Mormon Cult propaganda was pounding the media with "We're not a Cult" and with the help of Atheists too many were buying it... then... WHAM! ... the Penn State Cult hit the news and all of a sudden the word "CULT" that Mormons had hoped they forever swept under the rug is once again realized to be a real threat to anyone and everyone. Nice try Mormons, Atheists, but your propaganda poo poo just ain't cutting it. You fooled some of us but not all of us. Now people woke up realizing again that there are real Cults out there in the most unlikely places and here is another good description of what Cults are and how they happen...
November 14, 2011
"Many of President (Franklin D.) Roosevelt's best friends and well-wishers have often asked why he is so seemingly obtuse to unethical or improper appointments, business or lobbying activities, etc.. when they come from his own immediate circle, and so vigilant on numerous other far less important matters? What is this Achilles heel, anyway?"The answer, it always seemed to me, lies in Mr. Roosevelt's continual and deep demand for personal loyalty. I would almost call his political faith the 'cult of personal loyalty.' From his friends, associates and staff he expects and returns a feudal bond. Manifestations of personal loyalty have marked his whole political career . . . Labour Secretary Perkins, Harold L. Ickes, Harry L. Hopkins. Thomas G. Corcoran, and many another.. . as long as these people continued to give fervent loyalty, as long as they kept their faith of their feudal bond, they could, in effect, do no wrong. Loyalty was enough for the President. Edwin D. Canhom
Dec 1 11 9:28 AM
Within a healthy religious environment, family bonds are upheld and even strengthened, questioning of the leader and basic tenets is accepted, and the leader lives in a similar manner to the followers. One is offered all the information necessary to make an educated decision about joining, and once involved, people can choose the amount of involvement that feels right to them.
A cultic environment tears families apart, does not accept any questioning, and has a leader who claims to have an exalted position and to be above reproach. The cult is designed to solely advance its own goals, to abuse the members’ trust, and to use fear and shame to manipulate the followers. It freely utilizes deceptive techniques while recruiting new members and fundraising, misuses scripture, and declares other belief systems as false. Because it is not under the umbrella of a recognized religion, there is no governing body and the leader is, therefore, free to do as he or she pleases.
We have compiled the following comparative list to address this question, though there is no definitive answer.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN A DESTRUCTIVE CULT AND A RELIGION
Feb 5 12 2:33 AM
Your teen's growing spirituality
Involvement in cults
In your teenager's quest for identity and beliefs, it's quite possible that he might stumble into a cult. Over the past twenty years, the number of cults in Canada has increased and their influence has strengthened. Some cults are disguised as movements for personal improvement, for maximizing the human potential, for living out an alternative lifestyle, or for expressing the new age that we live in. Don't assume that only weak-minded teens can be lured into a cult. Many of the fatalities of the Solar Temple cult, for example, were professional, middle-class, middle-aged people.
Some teens raised in a secure, trusting environment could be more vulnerable to the pitch from the cult's recruiters. Other teens may be street-smart, more sensitized to hustlers of all kinds, and more wary of smiling strangers. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, in a statement supported by Info-Cult in Montreal, points out that people don't generally seek out a cult -- the cult actively recruits them in high schools, colleges, and universities. Their recruiters look for naive teenagers, individuals in need of friendship, or those in transitional situations, perhaps just starting university. Before your teen heads off to college or university, warn him about on-campus recruitment; suggest he be wary of anyone asking him to sign up for a course, join a group, or participate in an event, especially if that person also offers immediate friendship or free meals.
Another time when your teen may be vulnerable to recruitment is when she's travelling alone. Airports and bus and train stations are popular spots for cult recruitment. Cult members may use a technique known as "love bombing." They contrive a sense of family and belonging around your teen through hugging, touching, and flattery. The RCMP notes the following about the people who usually get recruited:
- They have been deceived and systematically entrapped.- They don't know the real nature of the organization.- They were lonely and were attracted by the apparent warmth and sincerity of a recruiter.
When your son first gets involved in what he may describe as a Bible study or philosophy group, he may go out and get his long straggly hair cut. He may meditate, something you've always meant to do. In fact, you may he pleased by his behaviour, at first. Then you notice him becoming increasingly distant. Soon it becomes apparent that he has no money and even his great-grandfather's gold watch, inherited as a family memento, is missing. His conversation seems so bland. Although he used to challenge everything you said, now he seems to lack critical thought.
Ask your teen about his group. If he seems to speak in pat phrases or recite statements that he's learned by heart, you might well worry that his involvement with the group could be harmful. Ask:
- Does the group go by any other name? - What is expected of members once they join?- Is the organization considered controversial by anyone? If so, why?
Take responsibility for researching and investigating, but be prepared to find that the group's real beliefs are shrouded in secrecy. If you find that it is a problematic group, talk to your teen about what he does and what he learns and what he values in the group. Listen respectfully and attentively to his answers -- an adversarial position gets you nowhere with a teenager. However, the worst thing you can do is nothing if you're concerned there is a problem. As a parent, you are well within your rights to set limits or to intervene so that you don't give your teen tacit permission to stay in the cult. He may subconsciously want a way out, so express your concerns. Set restrictions on his involvement. If he has been meeting with the group three times a week, ask him to restrict his involvement to one meeting every week. Ask him not to take out formal membership. At the same time, it's extremely important to ensure that your teen knows you're there for him. The key element in freeing a child from a cult is reconnecting him with family members.
You may also want to contact Info-Cult in Montreal. One of the main objectives of this organization is to help families of cult members. Its Resource Centre on Cultic Thinking has the largest library of materials about cults in Canada. It's not open to the public, but it offers a research service for a fee.
Jul 4 13 5:56 PM
Sometimes it seems that question has as many answers as there are, well, cults.Yet the term ‘cult’ has a precise definition — or rather, several precise definitions. Which definition is the right one largely depends on the context in which the term ‘cult’ is applied.
A ‘cult wine’ is, after all, something different than a ‘religious cult.’ A rock band with a ‘cult following’ differs greatly from a ‘suicide cult.’ And a ‘cult following’ is not necessarily the same thing as ‘following a cult.’Cult: Dictionary Definition
The definition of the term ‘cult’ as provided by the Merriam-Webster dictionary covers a variety meanings:
1 : formal religious veneration : worship2 : a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also : its body of adherents3 : a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also : its body of adherents4 : a system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator <health cults>5 a : great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book); especially : such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fadb : the object of such devotionc : a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion
The dictionary also explains the term’s etymology: French & Latin; French culte, from Latin cultus care, adoration, from colere to cultivate. See this article for a closer look at the history of the term cult and its usage.Cult: Meanings Vary
The term is confusing because it is ambiguous — infused with a variety of meanings depending on who uses it — and for which purpose it is used.
For example, the term ‘cult’ can be used in a theological and/or a sociological sense. The word takes on different meanings depending on the context in which it is used.
For instance, a Christian theologian can state that, say, the Mormon Church is theologically a cult of Christianity.
From that perspective — the viewpoint of a Christian — that is true since the Mormon Church rejects, changes or adds to the essential doctrines of the Christian faith to such an extend that Mormonism must be regarded as having separated itself from the faith it claims to represent. While the ‘Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ claims to be not only Christian in nature but also the only true expression of historical Christianity, Mormonism in reality has usurped and plagiarized Christian terminology and scriptures, creating a new religion.
In other words, the Mormon Church is not a Christian denomination, nor it is a sect — a term often used to indicate a group or movement that, while still part of the faith it identifies with, has doctrines or practices not in line with those of historical Christianity, but usually not to such an extend that it must be considered a different religion altogether. From a Christian perspective that religion fits meaning #2 in the dictionary definition quoted above, since it is a "religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious."
In its turn, the LDS Church likewise does its best to distinguish itself from groups that it considers to be separate religious movements — even while those movement claim to represent historical Mormonism.
[Note that the term 'sect' itself is also ambiguous, and -- to make things even more confusing -- is often used instead of the term 'cult.']
Yet those who deal primarily with the sociological characteristics of groups and movements usually find little to nothing in Mormonism and the Mormon Church that would cause them to apply the term ‘cult’ — because their evaluation is based largely on how the group or movement acts, rather than what it beliefs.
Note that while cult experts who approach cults from a sociological view generally do not address theological issues, cult experts who deal with cults from a theological perspective often also address sociological issues. The latter is a better approach, since people’s actions are informed by their beliefs.
A prime example of a cult of Christianity (as defined theologically) that developed into a full-blown cult (as defined sociologically) is the Children of God, now called The Family International.
Another example of a cult of Christianity (as defined theologically) that developed into a cult (as defined sociologically) is the International Churches of Christ — a prime example of an abusive church.
The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, whose members are referred to as Jehovah’s Witnesses, theologically is a cult of Christianity, and sociologically has countless cult-like elements as wewll.
Cults — as defined theologically — also exist in other religions. The definition holds, as long as a certain group claims to be part of, or representative of, a religion while at the same time violating that religion’s essential doctrines.
Essential doctrines are those doctrines that define a given religion’s basic essence. Much the same way, say, a tuna salad must include tuna, religions have basic, essential ingredients (doctrines).Variety of Cults
Groups said to be ‘cults’ are not necessarily religious.
Such is the case with, for instance, political cults (e.g. Lyndon LaRouche), psycho-spiritual or self-improvement workshops (LGAT, Large Group Awareness Training), and hate groups (e.g. Ku Klux Klan, White Supremacists). Cults are not always destructive
Not all groups that could in one way or another be defined, sociologically, as cults are necessarily destructive. For instance, not every high-demand group requires its members to cut off normal contact with friends and family.
A good initial check is to ask, how does this group impact a person’s health, wealth, and/or personal relationships?More information
• More information about cults can be obtained at our Cult FAQ web site.• If you think you may need the help of a cult expert, check CultExperts.org and Cult Expert: A Definition.Purpose of this blog
This blog deals with definitions of the term ‘cult.’
It also keeps track of how the term ‘cult’ is used in the media: brief quotes, where necessary some brief comments, and where appropriate links to resources for further research.
‘Cult-like’September 20, 2011
The term ‘cult-like’ means: resembling a cult.
It is used in both a positive or a negative sense.
Examples of ‘cult-like’ in a positive sense might be:
Deadheads have a cult-like devotion to the Grateful Dead
Some specialty wines attract a cult-like following
Examples of ‘cult-like’ in a negative sense might be:
Abusive men usually demand cult-like obedience from their wives
Some pastors have a cult-like control over their church members
In the media the term sometimes appears to be used suggestively. A reporter may not want to come right out and call a certain group a ‘cult,’ but instead describes it as ‘cult-like.’http://cultdefinition.com/
Nov 15 13 5:51 PM
9 Ways Groups Become Cults
The line between religions and cults can be a blurry one at times. Although some prefer to distinguish between cults and religions, there are some indisputable similarities. For example, both sometimes encourage donations from their followers and promote the sacrifice of food and other luxuries in the name of ritual observances. However, cults significantly differ in their belief systems, rituals and indoctrination. A religion that uses mind control techniques, deception and exploitation to teach its followers has strayed further away from a religion and is much closer to a cult. Here are 9 ways groups become cults:
Cults were built upon the foundation of mind control. Cults use mind control and brainwashing techniques in virtually every aspect of their teachings, recruitment and policies. Cults aim to reduce one’s critical thinking skills and gain control of one’s thoughts, emotion and behavior through the use of mind control techniques. Researchers may argue that mind control is nothing new to religion and most religious groups use some form of brainwashing to get their members to alter the way they perceive the world, but there is certainly a fine line between coercive thinking and suggestive interpretations of the truth.
A signature characteristic of cults is their charismatic leader. Although many religious leaders are considered charismatic, cult leaders have a different kind of magnetism and power that wins over followers. A cult leader is considered the supreme authority of the group, and he or she typically becomes the object of worship. This figurehead commands the upmost respect and compliance from its members and they have the only and final ruling on matters. Cult leaders lead the pack in using mind control and brainwashing techniques, so they can take full advantage of the members financially, physically and psychologically.
When it comes to religion people will do anything to seek the truth. Cults know this and use it to their advantage. Unlike most religions, cults will use deceptive and manipulative ploys to get people to join the cult and stay in it. They are notorious for using deceptive recruitment efforts, such as not indentifying themselves and not being transparent about their organization or message. Cults often use confusing terms and languages to control their followers’ minds and strengthen the group’s belief system.
One way for religious groups to become cults is to claim exclusivity. Cults are notorious for claiming that they have an exclusive line to God and have a special revelation of the truth. Most groups believe they are an elite and secretive group that is expected to recruit and fundraise with hidden objectives and limited disclosure to protect their sacred mission.
Offer explanations and solutions to everything in life
Most religions will admit that there are many things that can’t be easily explained or easily solved. This is a concept that many cults refuse to believe. Cults have a tendency to give ambiguous explanations for the most complex things in life and suggest unethical solutions to the world’s problems. These deceptive teachings are all part of the cult’s totalitarian worldview and brainwashing.
One major way religious groups become cults is through exploitation of their members. Cults are notorious for exploiting members physically, psychologically and financially. Typically, cult members are forced to give money and spend countless hours working and recruiting for the group. In many cases, women are sexually exploited in cults and are raped or forced to have sex with the leader. These unethical practices are justified by the cult’s promotion of totalitarian control and emphasizing the goals of the group over the individual.
Religious groups can be considered cult-like when they exercise information control. In keeping with their totalitarian worldview, cults take it upon themselves to manage the non-cult information that their members are allowed to hear or see. Instead, they will emphasize their own teachings through meetings, magazines, journals, videos and other forms of propaganda. Information control keeps cult members from thinking critically and questioning the group’s beliefs.
Isolation and total dependency on the group
Religious groups become cults when they enforce isolation from family, friends and society and emphasize total dependency on the group. Cult members are generally forced to cut ties with old family and friends and replace them with their new "family." In order to ensure this separation, cult leaders will remove members from society and live together in an unconventional manner. In addition to physical isolation, cult members also become disconnected from their previous values and beliefs.
Cults are distinctly different from traditional religious groups in that they have a totalitarian worldview that promotes the goals of the group over the individual. Cult leaders embody the totalitarian worldview by claiming an exclusive relationship with God or a higher force and controlling virtually every aspect of their members’ lives. As part of totalitarian control, cults often approve unethical behavior, whether it’s violence, deception or brainwashing, in order to foster the group’s beliefs.http://www.criminaljusticedegreesguide.com/features/9-ways-groups-become-cults.html
© 2017 Yuku. All rights reserved.