Views on cults Watch

Horner94
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Dear Fellow Students,
I would be interested in finding out what you think motivates the formation of a cult and how human behaviour is influenced by cult psychology.
I look forward to hearing back from you.
Kind regards,
Chad
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Decahedron
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"You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." - L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology.
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harrysbar
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(Original post by Decahedron)
"You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." - L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology.
Love it
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londonmyst
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The desire for absolute power, dissatisfaction with national society/popular culture, economic hardship, extreme personalities, insanity, totalitarian leaders and weak willed followers that seek continuous direction/focus.
I think cults exploit normal human social behaviour and the need for companionship- resulting in the most sinister situations of terror, mob rule, criminality and separatism.
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Horner94
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(Original post by londonmyst)
The desire for absolute power, dissatisfaction with national society/popular culture, economic hardship, extreme personalities, insanity, totalitarian leaders and weak willed followers that seek continuous direction/focus.
I think cults exploit normal human social behaviour and the need for companionship- resulting in the most sinister situations of terror, mob rule, criminality and separatism.
Hello, thank you for your response.
Do you consider the word cult an academic term? Are cults always a bane for society? What about mainstream religions and not all cults are religious?
Look forward to your response.
Kind regards,
Chad
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londonmyst
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(Original post by Horner94)
Hello, thank you for your response.
Do you consider the word cult an academic term? Are cults always a bane for society? What about mainstream religions and not all cults are religious?
Look forward to your response.
Kind regards,
Chad
No, I don't consider cults to be an academic term.
Nor restricted solely to groups with a religious agenda.
Healy's Workers Revolutionary Party, Balakrishnan’s Workers’ Institute of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought and the Revolutionary Communist Party were all cults hiding behind the mask of politics.

I believe that cults are always sinister, destructive and opt out of national law.
But many are very small groups with limited funding and less than a dozen members, so don't have the potential to cause mass or significant disruption to wider society.

Mainstream religions are never cults, although renegade sects/ fringe leaders can form their own splinter organisations that are cults.
Even smaller religions like jehovah's witnesses, scientology, mormon church of lds cannot accurately be deemed cults.
Nor fringe religious offshoot movements like the hinduthva/ khalistanis.
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Horner94
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(Original post by londonmyst)
No, I don't consider cults to be an academic term.
Nor restricted solely to groups with a religious agenda.
Healy's Workers Revolutionary Party, Balakrishnan’s Workers’ Institute of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought and the Revolutionary Communist Party were all cults hiding behind the mask of politics.

I believe that cults are always sinister, destructive and opt out of national law.
But many are very small groups with limited funding and less than a dozen members, so don't have the potential to cause mass or significant disruption to wider society.

Mainstream religions are never cults, although renegade sects/ fringe leaders can form their own splinter organisations that are cults.
Even smaller religions like jehovah's witnesses, scientology, mormon church of lds cannot accurately be deemed cults.
Nor fringe religious offshoot movements like the hinduthva/ khalistanis.
Hello again,

Thank you for a detailed response.

Okay, I understand where you are coming from in your analyses.

There is an organisation called the Westboro Baptist Church, have you ever heard of them? Some would call them a cult? What is your opinion on this?

Lastly, if I remember rightly, Lady Gaga once referred to her fan base as being a "cult". What would you say about this?

Kind regards,
Chad
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the bear
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misread the title

:emo:
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anosmianAcrimony
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Founders of cults found them to make money and accrue power. Followers of cults join in because they want to fit into a group and in some cases because they want to feel superior to the rest of humanity - that they are one of the special few who have ''caught on''.
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londonmyst
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(Original post by Horner94)
Hello again,

Thank you for a detailed response.

Okay, I understand where you are coming from in your analyses.

There is an organisation called the Westboro Baptist Church, have you ever heard of them? Some would call them a cult? What is your opinion on this?

Lastly, if I remember rightly, Lady Gaga once referred to her fan base as being a "cult". What would you say about this?

Kind regards,
Chad
I've studied the wbc.
I think they are a cult that covets fame or rather notoriety- one that has earned the whole of fundamentalist christianity a viler reputation than is deserved.
Same applies to faithful word baptist church in arizona, grace road church (fiji & south korea) and the manmin central church in seoul.

Musicians and movie directors often make claims that they have a "cult following" of fans behind them.
Star wars, the beatles, nirvana, titanic director james cameron.
I think its more of a publicity seeking strategy combined with ego issues- highlighting arrogant beliefs that they are no1 in their field with a devoted mass following.
I'm not a fan of Lady Gaga; I find her exhibitionist, annoying and musically talentless.
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Horner94
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(Original post by londonmyst)
I've studied the wbc.
I think they are a cult that covets fame or rather notoriety- one that has earned the whole of fundamentalist christianity a viler reputation than is deserved.
Same applies to faithful word baptist church in arizona, grace road church (fiji & south korea) and the manmin central church in seoul.

Musicians and movie directors often make claims that they have a "cult following" of fans behind them.
Star wars, the beatles, nirvana, titanic director james cameron.
I think its more of a publicity seeking strategy combined with ego issues- highlighting arrogant beliefs that they are no1 in their field with a devoted mass following.
I'm not a fan of Lady Gaga; I find her exhibitionist, annoying and musically talentless.
Hello,
Thank you for your response.
I really appreciate your thoughtful answer, especially when taking about contemporary musicians, Lady Gaga, etc. Thank you for being honest.
What would you say if cult members deny that they are in a cult, because they find this term insulting? I'm confused about this. I wonder if you could clarify this for me.
Lastly, the WBC claims that they follow the word of God, but what is your opinion?
Kind regards,
Chad
Last edited by Horner94; 6 days ago
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londonmyst
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(Original post by Horner94)
Hello,
Thank you for your response.
I really appreciate your thoughtful answer, especially when taking about contemporary musicians, Lady Gaga, etc. Thank you for being honest.
What would you say if cult members deny that they are in a cult, because they find this term insulting? I'm confused about this. I wonder if you could clarify this for me.
Lastly, the WBC claims that they follow the word of God, but what is your opinion?
Kind regards,
Chad
Cult leaders find the term cult insulting because it exposes the truth about their sinister agenda, tactics and usually their own personality.
Followers deny that they are part of a cult because they either: prefer the narrative espoused by the cult leader, are unwilling to face the sinister reality of what is going on around them or do recognise it but do not want any exposure knowing this will bring personal discomfort and public humiliation.

WBC follow the word and traditions of founder Fred Phelps, now echoed by his descendants in positions of leadership within WBC.
The WBC leaders are very clear that Christ's teaching about love, forgiveness, mercy and redemption have no place in their religion.
They do not aim to "win souls to Christ", they prefer hate.
As Mark Phelps who ran away from his father and WBC aged 19 once said- "If I had to take my family to court and convict them of being followers of Christ, I am not sure where I would find the evidence".
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Zasty
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Bro i so god damn want to make a cult that would be so dope, imagine like you and your bro's leading a entire group of brainwashed people that's just focused around worshipping toy aeroplanes n shiz that would be sick
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Horner94
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(Original post by londonmyst)
Cult leaders find the term cult insulting because it exposes the truth about their sinister agenda, tactics and usually their own personality.
Followers deny that they are part of a cult because they either: prefer the narrative espoused by the cult leader, are unwilling to face the sinister reality of what is going on around them or do recognise it but do not want any exposure knowing this will bring personal discomfort and public humiliation.

WBC follow the word and traditions of founder Fred Phelps, now echoed by his descendants in positions of leadership within WBC.
The WBC leaders are very clear that Christ's teaching about love, forgiveness, mercy and redemption have no place in their religion.
They do not aim to "win souls to Christ", they prefer hate.
As Mark Phelps who ran away from his father and WBC aged 19 once said- "If I had to take my family to court and convict them of being followers of Christ, I am not sure where I would find the evidence".
Thank you for your response.
At the moment, I am studying BSc Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University. Do you think they should incorporate the study of cult psychology into the problem? In general, do you think Universities should incorporate cult psychology into their curriculum?
Look forward to hearing back from you.
Kind regards,
Chad
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londonmyst
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(Original post by Horner94)
Thank you for your response.
At the moment, I am studying BSc Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University. Do you think they should incorporate the study of cult psychology into the problem? In general, do you think Universities should incorporate cult psychology into their curriculum?
Look forward to hearing back from you.
Kind regards,
Chad
I think cult psychology should be definitely by offered as a taught option for undergrad psychology, sociology, theology, history and politics.
Maybe also as an optional extra or brief lecture event for all university lecturers and students over 20.

But there would likely be heavy legal constraints on how specific the uni can be as regards taught case studies- unless the uni was able to draft in expert speakers who survived cults or respected academics that have studied them for decades.
There would also be issues around identifying vulnerable students that the option would not be suitable for and providing counselling support to all students who become distressed by the content/issues raised.

There is an argument that aspects of cult psychology should be taught in secondary school PSE/PSHE classes, so that students can identify signs of cult recruitment/membership.
I had a teacher who survived David Berg's child rape and sex cult.
She used to talk about the law, how she was raped by paedophiles within the cult and the way criminals within the cult network cut her off from the support that would have helped her.
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