ex cult members please give feedback
Posted by: whatisacult ()
Date: November 29, 2009 06:44AM

Whilst reading these sites Ive seen a lot of suffering people & horrible stories about leaving sects cults groups. I feel like there is something going on with people & religion, especially new religious movements. This is another topic I cant grasp & part of my own spiritual path. Im getting feelings that something is needed that I cant find online. What Im talking about is there is a lot of listing of religious misconducts manipulation brainwashing abuse of power etc that is common to all groups. Ie there is a common theme. Similar mistakes & bad behaviour. Im trying to identify this pattern. if anyone wants to comment on this & anything else Ive said & you can message me here feel free.

What Im feeling is needed is again a brief clearly written document, probably academic (hence my own incapablity). This document would be able to be used by all religious groups sects & sent to cults. It would say a basic summary of what is GOOD religion or good ethics (again my english fails me!)
For example:

do not take peoples lifelong savings
do not make people feel like they cant be themselves
do not pressure people to convert
do not let people work long hours for no pay
do not let people behave fanatically
do not let people neglect their health & nutrition
do not damage peoples lives & spiritual opportunities via sex (badly worded, this would be pedos, monks, orgy gurus, adultery)
do not force and pressure people to do things they dont want
do not force pressure people to hide info
let people express & be themselves
let people do things in their own time
do not suppress initiative
allow people to make their OWN decisions
do not disrespect the non believers- without their society you wouldnt be able to do you spiritual activities
do not monitor people
encourage & implement a feedback system

One is dishonesty so I will begin straight away saying Im in the Buddhist new kadampa tradition that is listed on this website as a cult & I know people have been mistreated in my group & thats why its on here.

Please add to this list & help me with my project. Remember the ethics for the list are what a GOOD organisation does not a bad one.


hmm heres a brainstorm of things that the good ethics list will stop to get you started

prompting people how to act what to say not accepting feedback not valuing feedback hating non believers, hating people who try to give constructive feedback, blackmailing sueing imprisoning oppressing silencing controlling forcing coersion pressure manipulation peer pressure -suppressing decision making- treating like a child not adult- loss of normal adult interactions of courtesy- splitting families- bellittling normal ways of life- haughtiness- arrogance- public humiliation & belittling, underestimating people, overworking people, prefering rich young healthy people, too much fundraising, not maintaining good relations with locals & neighbours or contributing to the community in some way- booting people out without any explanation, instilling fear
long sentence >> making people consult the leader before doing tasks in such a way that shows no confidence in the persons ability & tells them-you are not allowed/capable to make even simple decisions

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Re: ex cult members please give feedback
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: November 29, 2009 10:39AM

See [www.culteducation.com]

This is the group Whatisacult is associated with according to another post.

New Kadampa had generated some controversy.

See [www.culteducation.com]

Ten warning signs of a potentially unsafe group/leader.

1. Absolute authoritarianism without meaningful accountability.

2. No tolerance for questions or critical inquiry.

3. No meaningful financial disclosure regarding budget, expenses such as an independently audited financial statement.

4. Unreasonable fear about the outside world, such as impending catastrophe, evil conspiracies and persecutions.

5. There is no legitimate reason to leave, former followers are always wrong in leaving, negative or even evil.

6. Former members often relate the same stories of abuse and reflect a similar pattern of grievances.

7. There are records, books, news articles, or television programs that document the abuses of the group/leader.

8. Followers feel they can never be "good enough".

9. The group/leader is always right.

10. The group/leader is the exclusive means of knowing "truth" or receiving validation, no other process of discovery is really acceptable or credible.

Ten warning signs regarding people involved in/with a potentially unsafe group/leader.

1. Extreme obsessiveness regarding the group/leader resulting in the exclusion of almost every practical consideration.

2. Individual identity, the group, the leader and/or God as distinct and separate categories of existence become increasingly blurred. Instead, in the follower's mind these identities become substantially and increasingly fused--as that person's involvement with the group/leader continues and deepens.

3. Whenever the group/leader is criticized or questioned it is characterized as "persecution".

4. Uncharacteristically stilted and seemingly programmed conversation and mannerisms, cloning of the group/leader in personal behavior.

5. Dependency upon the group/leader for problem solving, solutions, and definitions without meaningful reflective thought. A seeming inability to think independently or analyze situations without group/leader involvement.

6. Hyperactivity centered on the group/leader agenda, which seems to supercede any personal goals or individual interests.

7. A dramatic loss of spontaneity and sense of humor.

8. Increasing isolation from family and old friends unless they demonstrate an interest in the group/leader.

9. Anything the group/leader does can be justified no matter how harsh or harmful.

10. Former followers are at best-considered negative or worse evil and under bad influences. They can not be trusted and personal contact is avoided.

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Re: ex cult members please give feedback
Posted by: Mary Struggler ()
Date: November 30, 2009 01:19AM

How to start a cult

Not for the faint of heart to watch. It's a college project and while an amateur production it still manages to capture a lot of truth about cults. The first time I watched it, I was okay but my sister was shaking. It's about 12 minutes and takes a recruit through the stages of becoming a full member.

Mary Struggler

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