Thursday, February 03, 2011

Further Thoughts on Cults

I've seen a few documentaries on cults, and one scene, repeated in every production, that really sticks in my mind is the parents expressing their absolute disbelief that their kids could get sucked into a cult. They talk about how their child was popular, played sports, had parties, and all of the other trappings of everyday life in America.

But if statistics are correct, there is an incredibly high probability that these parents, and their little childers, are religious. Does this not make sense to you? Because it's certainly senseless to me. The core of your standard, every-day religions is identical to the core of cults. The only difference is the behaviors that develop around that core. What the parents are actually saying is that they can't believe that their child would abandon the behavior patterns that they inculcated into them.

Accepting religious belief as something valid opens the door to cults. It is a door that nearly 200,000 people walk through every year. No, the average American life is not specifically... cultogenic... is that a word? I just made it a word. American life is not specifically cultogenic, but it is also not specifically antagonistic to cults. The only way to be specifically antagonistic to cult thought is to engender critical thinking, and an absolute rejection of belief without evidence. Effectively, the only way to prevent your kids from falling into a cult is to eliminate religion. And don't eliminate it in an equally dogmatic way. Eliminate it by explaining all reasoning behind the decisions and beliefs. You must make the answers logically self-evident. Instilling this framework of logic and thinking is the way to save your kids, not by simply saying that these baseless behaviors are somehow correct in comparison to other baseless beliefs.

No comments: