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Symptoms of a Cult
Posted: 30 November 2008 08:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]  
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Dennis Campbell - 30 November 2008 07:38 PM
CindyJayne - 30 November 2008 07:23 PM
Josh - 11 June 2008 02:00 PM

A cult is a religion without political power. (I heard that quote somewhere)

But, if you get enough cult or religious members together and either suggest strongly or force them through leaders or idiology to vote a certain way, they DO have political power.

I read this somewhere:

“The last time religion dictated politics it was called the Dark Ages.”——Unknown

Cindy,


That’s a disquieting thought.  But looking at large parts of the middle-east, we still have dark ages.

Dennis

That’s true, some of those places have never been OUT of the dark ages. Can you imagine living in a place where there were men called “religious minders” everywhere watching everything you so in case you break a rule and need to be punished?...............Wait, I have lived there, it’s called Utah. LOL

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Posted: 11 December 2008 10:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]  
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But, if you get enough cult or religious members together and either suggest strongly or force them through leaders or idiology to vote a certain way, they DO have political power.

And then, Cindy, once it has political power, that “cult” will become known as a “religion”. Cults and religions are pretty much the same things. The proper terminology is contingent upon the presence or absence of political power.

Josh,

The LDS is a cult, and it has a lot of political power.

Dennis

Then, Dennis, my humble opinion is that the LDS is no longer a “cult”, but a “religion”.

You see, I have my own cult. I worship Will Ferrell. The absence of political power makes it a “cult”. If everyone on earth converted to Ferrell-ism tomorrow, it would become a “religion”. See how this works? Are ya catchin’ my drift? Pickin’ up what I’m puttin’ down?

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Posted: 11 December 2008 10:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]  
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Josh, from Wikepedia:

Cult typically refers to a cohesive social group devoted to beliefs or practices that the surrounding population considers to be outside the mainstream, with a notably positive or negative popular perception.[citation needed] The word “cult”, which has at least eight meanings, has been a source of confusion.[1]

In common or popular usage, “cult” has a positive connotation for groups of art, music, writing, fiction,[2] and fashion devotees (see Cult following), but a negative connotation for new religious, extreme political, questionable therapeutic, and pyramidal business groups.[3] For this reason, most, if not all, non-fan groups that are called cults reject this label.

A group’s cult status begins as rumors spread of its novel belief system, its great devotions, its idiosyncratic practices, its perceived harmful or beneficial effects on members or its perceived opposition to the interests of mainstream cultures and governments. Persistent rumors may follow relatively small and recently founded religious or non-religious groups when they are perceived to engage in excessive member control or exploitation.[citation needed]

New religions are often considered “cults” before they are considered religions[4] by social scientists, by Christian Evangelical/Fundamentalist theologians, and also by the secular public – yet these three groups do not usually have the same understanding of the term “cult”. People understand the term “cult” through the most popular usage in their cultures and subcultures, which can result in homonymic conflict, a communicative conflict with people who hold a different definition of the same term. This often results in confusion, misunderstanding, and resentment between members of “cult” groups and non-members.[citation needed]

But it’s not worth much debate.  LDS is a powerful regional theocracy that exerts a controlling, dictatorial influence in most parts of people’s lives, as Cindy has noted,  Anyone who’s been subject to that influence knows what I mean.  It is not a “cult” for those comfortably insides it, it is for those outside it.

Dennis

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Truth, especially “moral truth,” is that elusive human creation whose exclusive apprehension is claimed by many, who then sanctimoniously condemn anyone else who does not agree with their particular apprehension, while denying that any question can be posed about their own apprehension.  I will try to avoid that tendency.  DEC

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Posted: 11 December 2008 11:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]  
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Thank you, Dennis. Allow me to edit my original statement:

A cult is a religion without political power and LARGE NUMBERS.

Wait…this still doesn’t seem right…..oh well, I’ll just have to keep editing Wikipedia until I get it right.

[ Edited: 11 December 2008 11:18 AM by Josh]
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Posted: 11 December 2008 11:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]  
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Josh,

The distinction is to me academic for most purposes.  I do not know of any religion with large numbers that doe not have some political power.

Dennis

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Truth, especially “moral truth,” is that elusive human creation whose exclusive apprehension is claimed by many, who then sanctimoniously condemn anyone else who does not agree with their particular apprehension, while denying that any question can be posed about their own apprehension.  I will try to avoid that tendency.  DEC

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Posted: 24 February 2010 08:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]  
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Personally, I had to read Steve Hassan’s book “Combatting Cult Mind Control” to finally get the gist of what I used to be involved in.  It helped me sift through the cobwebs and eventually free up some of the baggage. 

I still struggle with it, but not nearly on the scale I used to.

Noggin

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Posted: 20 July 2010 03:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]  
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In my opinion “cult” is just “religion” before it turns to “institutionalized religion”.

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Posted: 22 July 2010 11:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]  
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Religious leaders do an enormous amount of studying to figure out how to convince others they are right but they skip over the part where they figure out what is right before they do this.

They don’t keep good records of these indoctrination tactics in most cases since it wouldn’t do to accidentaly let the cult followers know how thay are being indoctrinated.

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Posted: 22 July 2010 12:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]  
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haonweb - 22 July 2010 03:42 PM

Religious leaders do an enormous amount of studying to figure out how to convince others they are right but they skip over the part where they figure out what is right before they do this.

Meh ... details.

 

haonweb - 22 July 2010 03:42 PM

They don’t keep good records of these indoctrination tactics in most cases since it wouldn’t do to accidentaly let the cult followers know how thay are being indoctrinated.

Not officially or openly, anyway, though in some cases I recall (very vaguely) from my sociology studies, back in the day, some cult group leaders (most?) got together and spoke very openly and frankly about them, but only with each other of course. The “legitimate” churches (also larger scale and/or more relatively orthodox cults—the ones that don’t scare the mainstream faithful) call it something like catechism or the Sunday school curriculum. At some point, as we’re all keenly aware, particularly here in the US, in the public mind indoctrination tactics become benign, and eventually even virtuous (i.e. church reps going out to recruit children for Sunday school seen not as despicable or even creepy at all, but rather as noble work that benefits the children and society overall).

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“We say, ‘Love your brother…’ We don’t say it really, but… Well we don’t literally say it. We don’t really, literally mean it. No, we don’t believe it either, but… But that message should be clear.”—David St. Hubbins

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Posted: 13 September 2010 02:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]  
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Am I the only one who instantly thought:
http://thenextweb.com/apple/files/2010/08/apple-logo-think-different11.png

“APPLE”?!?!?!?

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http://www.RightsAreImaginary.com

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Posted: 05 October 2012 01:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]  
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I think the over-arching principle missing from your list is:

0) The inability to come and go as you please.

Without this, no other sympton in your list would have much worth, and the inductee would never have the prolonged exposure needed for the dogma to sink in.

At Jonestown, Jim Jones always maintained that his followers were free to go whenever they liked, but when some followers tried to tip off the senator about their imprisonment, he was promptly shot dead.

A cult seems to always hold its followers right to the very end, however grim it may be, and regardless of how they may feel about it.

I personally classify Islam’s teachings as cultish as it explicity commands death for the crime of apostasy.

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“Does history record any case in which the majority was right?”
Robert A. Heinlein

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Posted: 05 October 2012 12:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]  
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Seems like an accurate list.  I believe all cults have most of these.  And I believe every cult absolutely has #9.

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Posted: 23 January 2013 11:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]  
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Religions and cults are one and the same thing. A cult by definition is: “Adherents of an exclusive system of religious beliefs and practices”- this, from Webster’s.


Christianity used to be referred to as the Christian cult by Christians themselves.


The modern usage of the word “cult” is a fairly recent phenomenon that is becoming confused with the word’s actual meaning.


The mechanism of the change in meaning is the same with other words in the language that start off meaning one thing, then over time become derogatory. For example, “Crummy” was a type of suit, but when that style went out of fashion, “Crummy” became a derogatory term.


The shift in meaning of the word “cult” is reactionary, and began in the 19th century when people became interested in things like Spiritualism and Eastern religions. Conservative, Protestant types used to get their knickers in a twist over this type of harmless fun, and like the Right-Wing Christian nutters during the 1970’s that declared Rock ‘n’ Roll to be the devil’s music, used to declare these things to be evil cults. This is where the myth of Satan Worship and human sacrifice originated. These things never existed- they were Christian nutter propaganda right from the beginning.

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