Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

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Curt Sunshine
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by Curt Sunshine » 26 May 2018, 21:00

There have been quite a few changes toward mainstreaming and away from previous traditionalist elements in the he last few decades. Ideologically, we are quite different now than we were in 1980.

It is easy to look for stunning, "revelatory" change and ignore significant change that doesn't seem or isn't revelatory in nature. Doing so, however, blinds us to real and important movement.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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SamBee
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by SamBee » 27 May 2018, 08:24

DevilsAdvocate wrote:
What about sex cults? There could be others like austerity cults as well. To be honest, I think the LDS Church fits many of these descriptions you listed at the same time but many members would deny that these points are a bad thing because it is supposedly coming from God so who are we to question God and his chosen prophets?


On top of that, I think many Church members think of the word "cult" mostly as an identifier for some of the relatively small and most extreme groups like the followers of Jim Jones that drank the Kool-aid, the followers of David Koresh, Heaven's Gate, etc. and they will feel like anyone calling the LDS Church a cult is just a hater calling us names out of spite. Personally I think there really is more to this than many Church members want to admit but I definitely wouldn't call the Church a cult when talking to most Church members because it seems like it will typically just make them defensive.
You should watch this. The Waco survivors tell a very different story - the first time tanks were used against civilians in the USA, government cover ups, highly aggressive troops, helicopter gunships. The whole thing was a hot mess. Waco is a much more sinister turn in US history than 9/11.

https://youtu.be/Xr9pQ1pIbiU

The more Waco is examined, the more we find the Branch Davidians were VICTIMS of unconstitutional government action. Yet it suits the government to pretend otherwise... as they did for years with native Americans.

As for sex cults - I pipped you to it. ?NIXM is mentioned above.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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DevilsAdvocate
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by DevilsAdvocate » 27 May 2018, 12:38

Ilovechrist77 wrote:
26 May 2018, 19:54
DevilsAdvocate, it's funny that you mentioned garment friendly clothing. I checked the recent garment designs from LDS.org and I was shocked. The women's garment tops sleeves are shorter than the men's, almost sleeveless. The men's garment top sleeves don't look like that. I just don't understand.
I think it's because enough LDS women have complained about garments so much that they finally made this minor concession. But even these new re-designed garments still wouldn't work with the 1964 BYU homecoming queen's dress. And why should women and girls that aren't even wearing garments yet still be expected to wear clothes that would cover them in the first place? It seems like it has become yet another obedience test and externally visible in-group versus out-group marker to try to separate the good Mormons from the supposedly evil world similar to the Word of Wisdom.
"Truth is what works." - William James

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nibbler
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by nibbler » 27 May 2018, 13:04

Curt Sunshine wrote:
26 May 2018, 21:00
It is easy to look for stunning, "revelatory" change and ignore significant change that doesn't seem or isn't revelatory in nature. Doing so, however, blinds us to real and important movement.
I think for many of us the most significant change the church can make is that one thing (or many things) that will make us feel like we're at least welcome at church; be they stunning, significant, or something else. The change that makes us feel more welcome is going to be different for everyone. Until then it's easy to see how people can be blind to the incredibly sloooooooooow changes taking place... specifically because the slow changes haven't yet addressed the types of things someone needs in order to have their spiritual or emotional needs met.
The new beatitude: "Good luck..."
- Maynard James Keenan

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nibbler
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by nibbler » 27 May 2018, 13:16

DevilsAdvocate wrote:
27 May 2018, 12:38
I think it's because enough LDS women have complained about garments so much that they finally made this minor concession. But even these new re-designed garments still wouldn't work with the 1964 BYU homecoming queen's dress. And why should women and girls that aren't even wearing garments yet still be expected to wear clothes that would cover them in the first place? It seems like it has become yet another obedience test and externally visible in-group versus out-group marker to try to separate the good Mormons from the supposedly evil world similar to the Word of Wisdom.
Every ward/region has their own flavor but if anything I feel like we've taken steps backwards in this department. You mentioned the 1964 BYU homecoming queen. Even in just the last 20 years it feels like the "modesty police" have been militarized.
The new beatitude: "Good luck..."
- Maynard James Keenan

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Ilovechrist77
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by Ilovechrist77 » 27 May 2018, 19:53

DevilsAdvocate, good point.

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SilentDawning
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by SilentDawning » 28 May 2018, 05:46

Excessive control over the behavior of its members, to the point of curtailing personal freedom. Jonestown Massacre, for example. Hard to leave it once you are in it without massive censure.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"Stage 5 is where you no longer believe the gospel as its literally or traditionally taught. Nonetheless, you find your own way to be active and at peace within it". -- SD

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

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SamBee
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Re: Scientology - What makes a religion evil, dangerous, or a cult?

Post by SamBee » 28 May 2018, 07:22

SilentDawning wrote:
28 May 2018, 05:46
Excessive control over the behavior of its members, to the point of curtailing personal freedom. Jonestown Massacre, for example. Hard to leave it once you are in it without massive censure.
I am playing Devil's advocate here (although I do believe Waco was a government massacre not a suicide thing)... People's Temple actually started out with positive aspects... people liked the fact that it wasn't racially segregated for example. I think it traded off the good parts of its past.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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