Cults, Conspiracies, and Secret Societies: The Straight Scoop on Freemasons, the Illmuniati, Skull & Bones, Black Helicopters, teh New World Order, and Many, Many More

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Cults, Conspiracies, and Secret Societies: The Straight Scoop on Freemasons, the Illmuniati, Skull & Bones, Black Helicopters, teh New World Order, and Many, Many More

మ reading ╚ Cults, Conspiracies, and Secret Societies: The Straight Scoop on Freemasons, the Illmuniati, Skull & Bones, Black Helicopters, teh New World Order, and Many, Many More online ᝥ Ebook By Arthur Goldwag ᩢ CULTSWhat Makes a Cult Cultish The dictionary defines cult as a system of worship, but the word is usually used to denote a religious movement that is out of the mainstream Christianity, for example, began as a cultic offshoot of Judaism, enjoying a similar status to the Essenes, the desert dwelling ascetics who preserved the Dead Sea Scrolls, or the Samaritans, who not only belonged to a different ethnicity than the ancient Hebrews, but also didn t worship in the Temple in Jerusalem or acknowledge any but the first five books of the Bible If a cult gains enough adherents, cultural currency, money, and other appurtenances of respectability, it generally becomes either a recognized denomination of the orthodoxy that spawned it or a full fledged religion in its own right.When members of one of those orthodoxies use the word cult, often than not they are using it pejoratively, to undercut a disreputably heterodox challenge to their own authority Many evangelical Christians, for example, dismiss even such large, established movements as the Jehovah s Witnesses, the Church of Christ Scientist, and the Latter Day Saints as cults, refusing to grant them the status of legitimate Christian denominations On May 11, 2007, televangelist Bill Keller sent the following message about then presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts and a practicing Mormon, to the millions of subscribers to his daily Internet devotional, LivePrayer Romney winning the White House will lead millions of people into the Mormon cult Those who follow the false teachings of this cult, believe in the false Jesus of the Mormon cult and reject faith in the one true Jesus of the Bible, will die and spend eternity in hell.Although my tone may be snarky at times, I strive to be agnostic when it comes to the tenets and doctrines of the movements I describe in these pages Though I have occasionally given in to the temptation to write about a group merely because its ideas are entertainingly strange a la Koreshanity , I am much interested in the power relations between the leadership of a group and its members than I am in its doctrines For the most part, when I characterize a group as a cult I am using the word as a social scientist or a psychologist would, to denote a coercive or totalizing relationship between a dominating leader and his or her unhealthily dependent followers What makes a cult cultish is not so much what it espouses, but how much authority its leaders grant themselves and how slavishly devoted to them its followers are.On February 25, 2009, the Supreme Court issued its judgment in Pleasant Grove City, Utah v Summum Summum is a tiny sect founded in 1975 by Claude Nowell 1944 2008 aka Corky King, Corky Ra, and Summum Bonum Amon Ra whose members, among other things, mummify their pets and themselves after they die A statue of the Ten Commandments stands in one of Pleasant Grove s public parks Summum members wanted to erect a monument of their own commemorating their Seven Aphorisms according to Nowell s teachings, the aphorisms were inscribed on the tablets Moses smashed after his first descent from Mount Sinai he received the Ten Commandments during his second ascent Not surprisingly, Pleasant Grove did not wish to accommodate them, and the Supreme Court agreed that the city does not need to Obviously Summum is than a little weird by conventional standards though Nowell claimed to have channeled his revelations from otherworldly beings, the theology he developed appears to be a hodgepodge of Masonic mysteries, Christian Gnosticism, and kitsch Egyptology but it is not abusive or controlling and hence it does not fall under my rubric of cult Neither do the many iterations of Theosophy, Anthroposophy, Wicca, neo paganism, Swedenborgianism, and many other occult, esoteric, and New Age movements that the Evangelicalist Web site Cultwatch devotes so much of its attention to.Robert Lifton, the distinguished psychologist and author of such well known books as The Nazi Doctors Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide 1986 and Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism A Study of Brainwashing in China 1961 , defined cults in a 1981 article in the Harvard Mental Health Letter as an aspect of a worldwide epidemic of ideological totalism, or fundamentalism Cults, he continued, can be identified by three characteristics 1 a charismatic leader who increasingly becomes an object of worship 2 a process of coercive persuasion or thought reform brainwashing, in other words and 3 economic, sexual, or psychological exploitation of the rank and file members by the cult s leadership The chief tool of coercive persuasion, Lifton writes, is milieu control the control of all communication within a given environment.Scientology has been accused of exploiting its acolytes and threatening its apostates, as has the Unification Church its mass celebrations of arranged weddings, presided over by its founder and leader, Sun Myung Moon, epitomize the infringements of privacy and personal autonomy that so often go hand in glove with cult membership Stephen Hassan, an ex Moonie and an exit counselor for former cult members, defines a cult as a Pyramid structured, authoritarian group or relationship where deception, recruitment, and mind control are used to keep people dependent and obedient A cult can be a very small group or it can contain a whole country The emphasis of mind control is what I call the BITE model the control of behavior, information, thoughts, and emotions.The Latter Day Saints may be big enough and mainstream enough today to qualify as a religion, but many of the unaffiliated polygamous sects that style themselves as fundamentalist Mormons fit Lifton s and Hassan s definitions of a cult to a T, in that their leaders assume Godlike powers at the expense of their followers autonomy and individuality Alma Dayer LeBaron 1886 1951 led his polygamous followers to Mexico in the 1920s when he started his breakaway sect, the Church of the Lamb of God over the next eighty years his sons Ervil, Joel, and Verlan fought bloodily over the succession, as did the fratricidal generation that followed theirs While they carried on the family business of writing visionary screeds and murdering anyone who challenged their authority, they put their child brides and neglected children to work stealing cars, dealing drugs, and fencing stolen goods Warren Jeffs, who succeeded his father, Rulon Jeffs 1909 2002 , as President and Prophet, Seer and Revelator of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, has been convicted of accomplice rape for forcing minors into marriage.Of course renegade Mormons don t have a monopoly on this sort of egregious behavior A Hasidic rebbe who demands that his disciples submit every aspect of their personal and financial lives for his approval can justly be accused of cultism The Armenian Greek mystic G.I Gurdjieff 1866 1945 wrote books, composed music, and choreographed dances his Fourth Way, an eclectic spiritual discipline which seeks to awaken the body, mind, and emotions, continues today under the auspices of the international Gurdjieff Society But in his lifetime, he led a cult of personality he was notoriously cruel and demanding to his students, who unreservedly gave themselves up to his power His charisma was said to be so intense that he could cause a woman to have an orgasm just by looking at her across a room 1 Mind Ministries, a tiny group led by a woman who calls herself Queen Antoinette, made headlines during the summer of 2008 when it was discovered that the one year old child of a member had been starved to death because he refused to say amen.A cult needn t be religious, either The dancer Olgivanna Hinzenberg, one of Gurdjieff s disciples, married the architect Frank Lloyd Wright 1867 1959 Wright s Taliesin school of architecture, where young architectural students performed virtual slave labor for the chance to learn from the master, had intensely cultish aspects to it As Hassan notes, a whole country can devolve into cultishness one need only think of Hitler s infamous Nuremberg rallies, Maoism at the height of China s Cultural Revolution, or the cult of personality surrounding Kim Jong Il, North Korea s Dear Leader A global, multilevel marketing concern like Amway, whose entrepreneurial leaders relentlessly pressure its salesmen to comport with their wider philosophy, to conform to their standards of success, to purchase only their approved products, and to associate only with their fellow Amway representatives, is no less cultic in some essential respects than the True Russian Orthodox Church, led by a schizophrenic named Pyotr Kuznetsov, whose thirty some odd members holed up in a cave in the Penza region of Central Russia in late 2007 to await the end of the world.Then there are the cults of personality that grew up around supposed flying saucer contactees George Adamski 1891 1965 was a self proclaimed teacher of Tibetan wisdom and a would be science fiction writer until he announced that he had been contacted by a Venusian named Orthon who told him about the dangers of nuclear war Later he was taken for a ride in a flying saucer adventures he recounted in his books Flying Saucers Have Landed 1953 and Inside the Spaceships 1955 Billy Meier is an ex farmer from Switzerland who says he has been in communion with astronauts from the Pleiades star cluster since he was five years old Thanks to their instruction, Meier says, he has achieved the highest degree of spiritual evolution of any human being on earth Though neither man had mass followings or required their disciples to worship them, the nonprofit foundations that they founded handsomely supported their various endeavors.Mystical practice whether in Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism, Kabbalism, or the ecstatic Christianity of Meister Eckehart, Saint John of the Cross, and Teresa of Avila is the pursuit of egolessness Yoga and meditation are one means of dissolving the barriers of everyday consciousness and opening oneself up to a transcendent mode of experience another is to temporarily surrender oneself up to an authoritarian teacher The ninth century Zen master Lin Chi is said to have beaten his disciples, even thrown one out of a second story window, to shock them out of their worldly complacency Reshad Feild s classic The Last Barrier A Journey into the Essence of Sufi Teachings 1977 vividly describes how his teacher assaulted his worldly assumptions One of his less resilient fellow questers was driven insane Of course all gurus are not so overbearing Some hold out the paradisical prospect of limitless sex still others terrify their followers with prophecies of a coming catastrophe that only they can save them from.Religious movements, like businesses, require a constantly refreshed stream of customers in order to grow or merely keep pace with their natural rate of attrition Recruitment and fund raising are critical activities for cults, often carried out by the members themselves, who tirelessly distribute pamphlets on street corners, proselytize friends, family, and colleagues, and even use their bodies as lures as female members of the Children of God were instructed to do in the 1960s and 1970s a practice that their founder called Flirty Fishing I have experienced some of this persuasion for myself and know how formidable it can be For someone seeking to fill a void in his or her life, especially someone who is cut off from family and friends, it can be well nigh irresistible.When I was in my early twenties, one of my coworkers belonged to Arica, a syncretic movement founded by a Bolivian mystic named Oscar Ichazo, which brings together aspects of Gurdjieff s Fourth Way, Tai chi chuan, and ideas and practices associated with Esalen and the human potential movement, and wraps them up in a high gloss package As we got to know each other, he pressed me to accompany him to one of Arica s weekend retreats strongly intimating that, if nothing else, I could meet attractive and accessible women there When I finally broke down and did, I was immediately struck by three things 1 that nearly every minute of the weekend was rigidly scripted the session leaders had neither time nor toleration for questions or intellectual give and take 2 that, rather than expounding or elaborating ideas, the teachers orchestrated experiences, through physical exercises and guided meditations, which were specifically designed to whet one s appetite for 3 that none of the women attending paid the slightest bit of attention to me.Nothing bad happened nobody tried to brainwash me or steal my money But somewhere around the halfway point, I distinctly remember feeling a twinge of resentment when I realized that nobody wanted to engage me or persuade me or establish a relationship with me instead they were trying to break down my resistance, to lull me into a state of susceptibility, to rope me in I wasn t exactly in danger, but I felt obscurely threatened I understood that to receive enlightenment on someone else s terms required an act of surrender that I wasn t prepared to make.Clearly the path to enlightenment can be a perilous one for masters and disciples alike, with figurative and all too literal robbers, rapists, and murderers lurking behind every tree The too compliant initiate can be reduced to zombiehood an unscrupulous or undisciplined master can easily yield to the temptation to take carnal or material advantage of the power they wield or succumb to the delusion that they themselves are the Messiah or even God It is a story that will be told again and again in the pages that follow.Aetherius Society see Area 51 in Conspiracies Amma the Hugging Saint, or Mata Amritanandamayai see Indian Gurus AssassinsStoried Muslim cult which held sway in remote areas of Persia and Iraq and made inroads into Syria for a period in the eleventh and twelfth centuries Like the Druze, the Assassins were an outgrowth of Ismailism, a schismatic movement within the already schismatic Shiism Like the Shiites, the Ismailis believe that the succession passes from Muhammad through Ali and Fatimid, but they disagree about the identity of the Seventh Imam While Twelvers, the majority of Shiites, believe he was Musa al Kadhim 746 799 , Ismailis say he was Isma il ibn Jafar 721 755 The Ismailis themselves would schism in 1094 over another dispute about the succession of the caliphate After the death of the Eighteenth Imam, Mustansir, in 1094, some supported his younger son Musta li d 1101 some supported his elder brother Nizar ca 1044 1095.Hassan i Sabbaah 1034 1124 would become the leader of the Nizarites A widely traveled, well connected Persian the great poet and astronomer Omar Khayyam 1048 1122 was one of his schoolmates Sabbah was forced into exile after he was accused of embezzling from the Shah As cerebral as he was ruthless, he attended Al Azhar University in Cairo, where he studied Ismailite philosophy The Ismailites esoteric teachings are highly syncretic, combining aspects of Neoplatonism, Manichaean dualism, and Gnosticism At their heart is the notion that the conflict between good and evil begins within the nature of God, and that the world is a product of divine emanations that contain both light and darkness Only a select group of students was admitted to Ismailism s inner circle according to some accounts, initiation was accomplished through nine degrees of knowledge a system that anticipated secret societies like the Masons. The kind of reference manual that the Internet cannot supplant Goldwag keeps the facts straight and gives the rumors no matter how lurid and entertaining about as much respect as they deserve The Washington Post Marvelous.Scie ntific AmericanArthur Goldwag is a shrewd, fair minded, learned and entertaining tour guide through a world thats simultaneously funny and frightening Not a page goes by without some I didnt know that nugget Given whats going on this ever paranoid society, a book like this becomes not only titillating but crucially important.Steven Waldman, Editor in Chief and co founder of Beliefnet.comThe answer to your burning questions about subjects from Area 51 to the Yakuza DetailsDelightful The Weekly StandardGoldwag is a colorful writer who makes good use of his material as he aims to explain, rather than debunk or expose, a fascinating diversity of beliefs Boston GlobeThe authors delivery is engaging and entertaining The amount of research done in this book is astounding An incredibly insightful, thoroughly enjoyable look at societys shadow Armchair InterviewsGoldwag navigates his way through the wilder reaches of human belief with great urbanity.Mark Booth, author of The Secret History of the World As Laid Down by the Secret SocietiesAs entertainingly written as it is enlightening.Phillip Lopate Conspiracies A Repairman Jack Jack is a wonderful character, ultracompetent but still vulnerable While there s plenty of violence in Conspiracies, also lot humor Pedophilia Rampant Black Satanic Cults Behind the headlines conspiracies, cover ups, ancient mysteries and Real news perspectives that you won t find mainstream media Gang Stalking, Mind Control Cults The The Deeper Meaning True Detective Detective TV series about investigation satanic ritual murders carried out by mysterious men season ended rather Heaven Gate religious group Wikipedia Heaven was an American UFO millenarian cult based San Diego, California, founded led Marshall Applewhite Bonnie IronCrown Iron Crown Enterprises RPGs Welcome friends, fans, visitors to many worlds ICE has been producing role playing, board, miniature Cults Johns Hopkins University Human beings have believed conspiracies presumably as long groups at least three people which one convinced other two were Cults, Secret Societies Cults, ratings reviews Heatherfeather said Good introduction some famous cults, conspi Cryptids, SoundCloud podcast all weird crap from history sometimes can be explained From times missing present day Surreal Talk the weekly on conspiracy, paranormal much An alternate perspective major stories events beginning time up unti Addiction Similarities Cult social with non beliefs or practices, often social, manipulates, controls exploits its members The Straight Scoop Freemasons, Illmuniati, Skull Bones, Helicopters, teh New World Order, Many, Many More Close Encounters Why are attracted alternative movements examination marginal marginalized groups, practices Free 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