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Thread: Cults

  1. #31
    Sniffles
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    I deleted it Mystic.

  2. #32
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    I'm sorry to hear it Beat. This sort of thing always makes my head spin...

    I feared for a while that my sister would be sucked into something like this, her position in life always making her feel rather alone and out of touch with the rest of us.
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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    I deleted it Mystic.
    Oh, I nearly sperged.

    I think you're right about the misconception most people have about cults. Usually, the image associated with cult like behavior is more like "occult" behavior, involving secretive rituals and hidden knowledge. Imagine hooded druids chanting around stone hedge with glowing glyphs edged into the ground, and only those with the appropriate gesticulation are permitted in the circle. Hence Victor's belief that MBTI is a cult- because it requires a certain knowledge about typology before you can be readily understood. However, by that same logic, any other formal study of anything could be considered a cult; but already we're working with a misnomer.

    This reminds me of an event that took place many years ago. At the time, I was attending a non-denominational church that was extremely conservative; though for the sake of accommodating all of its members, it wasn't always outrightly so. I could sense that somewhere within the heart of the institution, namely within some of the elders, there was a kind of ardent, scowling darkness that was not unlike Fred Phelps and the Westborough Baptist Church.

    One night, I decided to invite one of my friends (ENTP) to church, for both religious and social reasons. He was already attending a more mainstream non-denominational church that was more liberal in its approach; so as you can imagine there was a kind of culture clash. It was the first time I could see my own religion from an outsider's perspective; and from that vantage point it did seem like a cult. The epitome of this mentality flickered around the time we took communion, during a drawn out prayer beforehand. My friend snickered "Is this a cult?", as the church referred to Eucharist as a remembrance of blood and sanctity. I was embarrassed, and I attempted to shroud my feelings - I felt somewhat responsible for my friend's behavior that night because it reflected on me and my family.

    Fast-forward about 5 years, after much deliberate spiritual contemplation, and deviation from religion itself.

    The same friend was picking me up to attend the next showing of Avatar. Before we headed off, he fumbled around in my disheveled room. In the corner there were a few books by G.K. Chesterton, a book on Christian Mysticism and a few others by non-denominational authors. I'm sure he glanced at them momentarily, assessing the situation. I think he's always thought of me as an elated and somewhat immature person with spiritual inclinations, so it probably didn't surprise him; but the notice went unspoken.

    After seeing the movie, we sputtered down the road, talking about the significance of Avatar. No doubt, it was full of environmental overtones, but it also had an anti-imperialistic message. I noted that environmentalism had some roots in paganism, but it also had roots in Christianity, seeing as Christianity tends to preach that man has a certain dominion over the rest of nature. Taken the right way, that could be a message of responsibility, while more Eastern Religions give a message of harmony. This devolved into a discussion about 2012, zombies, and the Apocalypse.

    Right before I exited his truck, he noted that we were safeguarded against the fires of hell because we were saved by Christ. Somehow I knew his comment was compelled because he had been baptized recently in a separate sect from where he attended previously, and also because his Fe responded to the books that he observed in my room. My gut writhed in the injustice of what he said. I really didn't want to believe it as a literal concept - that we would be whisked away in a Rapture while others would be left to rot. And once again, I felt a similar kind of responsibility that I felt back when we were taking communion. He gave me a high-five, which I reciprocated only limply.

    I understand that not all people feel the same intrinsic force that tells me that this concept of literal damnation is wrong, and no amount of rigorous learning will tell me otherwise. Ironically, some might find a similar intrinsic feeling that insists on them being correct and me being deluded. So it becomes a process of understanding that demands the ability to shift perspectives and appreciate different beliefs for what they are worth and how they can serve their own purposes. Very very difficult.

  4. #34
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    The closest I ever came to a cult was when some Jehovah's Witnesses came up to my door when I was watching the Kermit the Frog cover of the Johnny Cash cover of the NIN song "Hurt." I had the windows open and was watching it on the TV and it was visible through the window as they walked up. I think the Kermit/Rolph oral sex disturbed them because they didn't hang around long.

  5. #35
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    Wow... Godwin's in only 5 posts and in reference not only to this site but to MBTI in general. Impressive.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by stalemate View Post
    The closest I ever came to a cult was when some Jehovah's Witnesses came up to my door when I was watching the Kermit the Frog cover of the Johnny Cash cover of the NIN song "Hurt." I had the windows open and was watching it on the TV and it was visible through the window as they walked up. I think the Kermit/Rolph oral sex disturbed them because they didn't hang around long.
    You're a hopeless heathen.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Tater View Post
    You're a hopeless heathen.
    What? I invited them in to watch videos with me while we discussed our beliefs...

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    One of my ex-boyfriends when I was younger had a brother who converted to the Mormon church, and when Mormon brother married his wife, his family wasn't even invited to the "real" wedding because they weren't Mormons. I also found out that they wear sacred long johns and pray for their dead and non-Mormon relatives to someday have a planet of their own.

    I also once made the mistake of allowing Mormons to tell me about their religion one time when I was living in Vegas, and the two guys practically stalked me afterward trying to get me to come to their church: calling repeatedly, even randomly showing up at my apartment.

    I think Mormonism is a cult, srsly.
    Hey marm... I have thought a lot about this post actually. As someone who was raised at least partially within the Mormon faith, I can agree with you that there are many intense people who take the religion waaaaay too seriously/literally, people who sincerely believe that they have the full truth, that it is their duty to help make everybody Mormon, etc. etc. There's a lot within the faith that bothers me, like the behavior of church leaders/members in relation to the gay rights movement, for example (not trying to derail the thread, just giving an example).

    That said, I do not think it is a cult. There are many reasonable, intelligent, thoughtful people within the religion, and some of the kindest, most thoughtful people I know I met through my involvement in the LDS church. Even though I am unsure of my relationship to the religion at this point in my life and there's a lot that makes me frustrated with it, I cannot deny my own experiences with the kind, loving people I know from my late childhood. Unfortunately, nothing is very cut and dry like that. Most things contain elements of black AND white... I suspect that is what gives richness to life.

    I won't go into describing the actuality of the practices you refer to as wearing 'sacred long johns' and praying 'for their dead and non-Mormon relatives to someday have a planet of their own' unless you're actually interested.
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  9. #39
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    And unfortunately, it is typically the crazies who tend to be the most vocal about things... :rolli:
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  10. #40
    Ginkgo
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    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    And unfortunately, it is typically the crazies who tend to be the most vocal about things... :rolli:
    Ah, a zealot is someone who holds a secret doubt. No matter how glazed over or brainwashed their face looks, you know there's a rational seed somewhere in there that could flourish.

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