cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: freedom fighter ()
Date: October 20, 2007 01:07AM

Personally I feel cult leaders are evil in all sense of the word. I have always looked for the good in people. It's very disheartening to have to admit that someone truly has bad intentions. All the while you've wanted to believe that your instincts were right all along, arguing back and forth with yourself. A dark souled person, I feel could be the only one responsible for such crimes against human souls.I feel we have to literally dodge these kind of people to keep out of their preying intentions. Unfortunately it takes a strong soul to recognize them, one who doesn't need another to make them feel worthy. That's the bottom line.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: Sallie ()
Date: June 01, 2008 07:46PM

Right on. They are pure evil. No sense in trying to figure it out, just avoid them.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: mysticjaw ()
Date: October 26, 2008 08:19PM

They are evil in the sense that they have no moral or ethical conciousness. And they lack empathy, completely. Jack Rosen or Werner Erhard said that life was empty and meaningless. Those who suffer from the Narcicistic Personality Disorder speak quite often of the emptiness inside of themselves. Normal people have empathy, ethics and morals which guide our lives healthily. I think that Jack/Werner was commenting on his internal world, not the human predicament.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: Sparky ()
Date: December 02, 2008 09:38AM

I won't use the term "evil", however I would say that cult leaders and MOST new religious movement creators are certainly aware of the kool-aid they are ladeling out.

My mom always said if I wanted to get rich quick, just start a new religion. She raised me on this observation of her's which is probably why I have "rubbed elbows" with numerous cults but never got pulled in all the way.

I think that the people on this site (both the victims of cults and the education'knowledge seekers) could all understand this and could see how easy it would be.

I think what sets the people on this forum apart from the flim-flam men/women, is that the people here realize how much damage, hurt, financial ruin and family strain these cults cause and would NEVER start one. Knowing what we know about the cult escapees, how could we ever do this to other human beings? We couldn't and wouldn't. I would get a job at the local WalMart as a "greeter" than harm a fellow human being for my own finacial gain.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: xythos ()
Date: December 05, 2008 10:53PM

I think it's a combination of the two... I'll try to explain what I am trying to convey without this in any way meant as those reading here, assuming them to be unaware or ignorant. If they were, they wouldn't be on this forum in the first place.

Certainly, from my own observation over the years with various so-called "new age writers/teachers", starting with Louise Hay (though I doubt she was the first one, but in my limited curriculum, that's where it started for me anyway), crossing the borders to the religious, ecological gurus (Al Gore), or whoever else feels, at least at the onset, very passionate about a theme, doctrine or - maybe in more plain sight & view, the likes of Lee Iacoca, Warren Buffet, etc. - their career & their credo for making it 'big', they, by the very intensity, enthusiasm, fervor & consistent input (in the multifarious forms as this forum so beautifully puts on display!), almost, by some oddball 'Law of Attraction' kind of energy, "affect" their immediate environment.

Whether it is Paramahansa Yogananda, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, any 'preacher-teacher-political horse' or 'business guru' "out there" drumming up "support for their cause", it ends up, feeding in on itself - i.e., it becomes an independent, autonomous movement that feeds off itself & has taken on a life of its own. There is a dynamic that develops in spite of itself, simply because, to a certain degree, that is the nature of 'energy in motion' (e-motion).

Most of those being too much out in the public arena, whether they be 'stars' (an area that creates its own cults by admission) or political 'heroes' (to apply with extreme reservation & caution in this context because most of them are not kosher). The Obamania-cult comes to mind here, religious leaders such as the Dalai Lama who is a funny little man allright & who I saw in London way back, cracking jokes all the time, which doesn't really entice one to take him seriously (apologies to those I might have treaded on their spiritual toes - warning - I'm not finished with sweet but cheap little DL)... I'll get back to the DL later...

What I'm getting at is, that a lot of these people at the outset might have had good intentions, if not necessarily with the required awareness to deal with the 'onslaught' of the followers & the consequences such a self-fulfilling 'prophecy of succes beyond my wildest dreams' might bring with it...

I have seen it time & again that the people who are the 'spider in the web' so-to-speak, didn't necessarily go out on purpose to create ill-gotten movements, but that in a paradoxical "falling back on itself" "re-action*, they've become a victim of their own success. Elvis was prime example of this. And although there are certainly individuals "on the circuit" that have, by nature i.e., by natural inclination a much greater tendency to endulge their depravity, their base urges (it's a zoo all right!), there are those who simply cannot deal (are unable to cope) with the demands of what their 'fans', 'followers', 'groupies' want or expect of them.

*Re-action as I would like to emphasise it within this context is that rather than taking action out of a conscious, clear-headed mindframe, someone thrown into the maze of an emotional "pool of feelings" - mixed with ego, their conscious as well as their un-conscious motives/drives - much like a steered, remote-controlled object, as in the case above, ends up becoming a "pawn" of their own ill urges & 'hidden agendas', a.s.f.. Hence, the emphasis on "re" as it would pertain to a 'response' rather than the one making a deliberate, focused choice to act with an ethical sense of responsibility.

This in itself creates a kind of counter-cyclic effect on the 'leader' in question. Be they 'hero', star, political horse, new age guru, business guru, preacher, teacher, etc - 'titles' which are interchangeable because they have the exposure & the 'projection canvas of expectations' in common.

[This, also, is by no means trying to be a 'cult-leader apologist' - nothing could be further from my intention. As I have stated elsewhere, I am allergic to anyone who tries to 'sell me' their "brand" of "living the life as I tell you to!"]

So, if, by natural tendency to be narcissistic & feed one oneself, yet at the same time being confronted with all the demands being made on them from the "outside", they, (I intuit) go into a kind of "flight "re-action mode". Somehow, it seems to me, that they feel very pressured to uphold the image their ilk (groupies & the public at large) have of them so in a kind of knee-jerk reaction, in order to cope with an ever increasing (but humanely unmanageable) expectation to be a "super-human" (projection canvas), they end up going off the rails, taking ever more outrageous 'liberties' not just for themselves (though primarily so), but the "chosen" ones who have been given 'permission' to be "near" the cult figure in question.

I've noticed time & again that if those people take "groupies' baths", they end up losing themselves. Ironic as it may seem, they no longer are able to hear their own voice (too much chatter, energetic begging, wanting, asking to give of themselves from those around them), much less have clarity of what is 'appropriate' &/or a "no-go zone". Those that have a strong, emotionally mature & self-developed sense of Self (or, plainly put, are on a whole, a balanced individual), that know how to curb their base instincts (insatiable powertripping, giving in to greed, lust & their ego), are, IMO, much better equipped to avoid jumping on the "megalomaniac ego trip" that his 'followers', by circumstance, feed...though it still isn't a safe-guard for the 'trappings' of power & success & 'being in control'.

Gandhi was known to be a terrible father & a philandering husband. ML King had his dalliances, too & as has become known, he was in genuine conflict with himself & the 'message' of human rights he was spreading shortly before he was assassinated. JFK was, as far as I know, a sexual addict. Not to mention his dependency on medication drugs.

So even so-called 'clean' "gurus" (leaders, etc) are often "less than" what we have been 'fed' through the official information sources.

As uncomfortable as it may seem, it is always a 'feeding off' each other. Whether it is in a 'singular' relationship or in a 'group-frenzy' environment. Unfortunately, all too often, as has been observed here on the forum by various posters as well, those 'in the limelight' are often nothing but empty shells & by default, an ideal, if seriously dangerous & misleading projection canvas for the unfulfilled wants, needs & urges that are our own, but which are easier to "put over" on somebody rather than go inside of ourselves... Again, this isn't a "fit for all" module to apply to all & sundry whether it is within a cult or an individual relationship.

Although I am careful with throwing around too readily available 'terms' of "new age lingo", I do feel that there is some truth to the saying: "What you don't want to see in yourself (be that good or "bad"), is easier to throw at somebody pulling a bad trick on you".

This is not to say that those who have been born into a cult, or have been seriously abused by self-acclaimed gurus & the resulting movement that grew out of it (which is all too often the rule rather than the exception), are to be 'blamed' for having been born to followers of dubious characters. I do feel it is important to differentiate between two extremes. This example is one. Another would be the hype around the Dalai Lama or Obama.

As disrespectful as this may seem to some readers here, the DL has become browner in spite of his genetic origin (I dare say so given I'm Asian myself! Thank you very much!).

What I am trying to say is that his constant brown-nosing to the "high & almighty in (especially US) politics" (Sarkozy is another one to observe with extreme caution & suspicion!) has led to him making a joke of himself as a bona fide spiritual & religious leader. The Vatican is no better. Different garb, same BS. I find it disgraceful & seriously embarrasing that somebody like the DL who claims to be 'so enlightened' feels it necessary to be on every talk-show circuit, selling his spirituality to the highest bidder in La-La land (Hollywood).

It's revolting & utterly cheap. The lowest common denominator one can go down to. Is that evil? Certainly for somebody trying to be authentic, it certainly leaves a very high probability factor for the genuine seekers who would pursue that avenue of spiritual practice to wonder what all that circus is about. Like I said to someone else recently: "Do they really need to do this? How much more watered down can you get?" It's like pouring dioxin into clear stream of water. Poisonous.

Maybe, when I saw the DL in London, that was the sign of things to come (back at the end of the 90s). If I'm not mistaken, he was there as part of a "new age/spiritual expo" or some such similar blurb. Come to think of it, why wasn't the pope there? He's certainly DL's equivalent for the Christian indoctrinated crowds?

Speaking of the pope, if ever there was a genuinely evil 'messianic leader' out on the world stage fooling the sheep by the masses, it certainly is our dear little Nazi pope, 'Cardinal Rat-singer'. So, evil, as well as 'good' has a lot more faces than one might be inclined to think. The Vatican has had ties with Mafia that go way back. Andreotti was running the Italian parliament for a long time with the generous help of the Mafia & the 'support' from the Vatican. It's the Vatican, too, that allowed a lot of Nazis to make headway to South America as well as the US (Project Paperclip) because they collaborated with the Nazis throughout WWII & they had the power to give out passports to the Nazis. And, I hope that the readers here are aware enough to know that this was all 'approved of' by the pope himself.

The most 'obvious' evil-intended projection 'screens' (i.e., cult leaders) are not always the most powerful. Opus Dei is very good example of this. So are the Jesuits. All cult-like 'movements' fully integrated within the Vatican.

Nothing is as obvious as it seems. That is certainly one thing I've learned on my many "hit & miss", "trials & errors" on my path to find true & authentic spiritual guidance.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: xythos ()
Date: December 06, 2008 01:11AM


The "Nazi pope" (Benedict) is a commonly known factor on this side of the pond. There have been documentaries about Rat-singer's "Nazi youth" past & also, that he was in the closer, immediate circle of Adolf himself. The same goes for the Mafia's links & ties with the Vatican, including their enormous political influence over most of the European continent, which is intrinsically & unmistakably tied in with the monarchies in Europe & its historical development on the political world stage.

Maybe, the fact that there's a variety of different language-dcoumentaries available where I live, one has a different scope from which to look at so-called 'public figures', all of the documentaries being accessible on regular tv channels (no satellite dish necessary).

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: xythos ()
Date: December 06, 2008 06:52PM

as above

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/06/2008 07:12PM by xythos.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: xythos ()
Date: December 17, 2008 12:52AM

NPD & the saviour syndrome...


Cult leaders, political figures....

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: yasmin ()
Date: January 18, 2009 02:22PM

When thinking about whether all cult leaders are necessarily narcissists or sociopaths, I am really not sure. The leader of our group seemed to believe, and acted accordingly, but also used power badly.
Looking at an obvious cult group such as Koresh, it still seems that the leader had some type of belief. A pure con artist would have done a deal with the feds, or snuck out of the compound and left his followers high and dry: suicide for a belief is not the mark of a sociopath,as they generally are far more interested in self preservation than anything else. Of course, his followers' welfare was obviously not important to Koresh, or he would have tried to get them to safety.
In our group again, there don't seem to be easy answers, as there were lies told by the leader, power was definitely misused, and people were hurt by this, but also I think the leader had a strong religious belief. I suppose I don't really like pat answers; maybe nothing in life is simple.And there are some cult leaders who probably fit the sociopath or narcissist description to a T.But I wonder if some are people who start off with good intentions, but have personality flaws and handle power badly.The great thing about society is it gives one a set of norms and checks and balances.Cult leaders become absolute authorities, and their followers lose the ability to decide for themselves what they truly believe about a situation, because the leader has already told them what they must believe, if they want to find God. This means there are no checks or balances on the leaders' behavior.
Maybe that is what makes it a cult though? The fact that the followers are not considered important or valued, and are expected to give up things for the leader/to show devotion? Not a lot of fairness in such a set up.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/18/2009 02:41PM by yasmin.

Re: cult leaders-evil or misguided
Posted by: yasmin ()
Date: January 19, 2009 03:07AM

Actually, was just looking up the definition of narcissism again,and it seems like a lot of the traits do apply for cult leaders; belief in themselves as superior or special, grandiosity, sense of entitlement. Narcissistic wound seems to apply too. One I am not so sure about is lack of empathy. The leader of our group would alternate between rage ( when you really needed to walk quiet and not draw attention to yourself) but other times seemed to have a great deal of empathy for people who were in pain.Maybe more like borderline personality disorder? Does anyone else have experiences with cult leaders that were similar?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/19/2009 03:08AM by yasmin.

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