Tag Archives | Cults

The Time William S. Burroughs Became a Scientologist (And His Subsequent Dismissal of the Religion)

Screen Shot 2013-07-30 at 11.16.25 AMWilliam Burroughs first became attracted to the Church of Scientology because of its claimed ability to extinguish the wounds of bad memories. For nearly a decade (also what most consider his least artistic years), Burroughs followed the churches teachings in much the same way he sought out other “mind-expanding” techniques such as hallucinogens.

It would be L. Ron Hubbard’s “fascist tendencies” which led Burroughs to finally denounce Scientology via the Los Angeles Free Press.

You can read his collection of criticisms of the church in a free PDF: Ali’s Smile/Naked Scientology.

Excerpt:

Scientology is a model control system, a state in fact with its own courts, police, rewards and penalties. It is based on a tight ingroup like the CIA, Islam, the Mormons, etc. Inside are the Rights with the Truth. Outside are the Commies, the Infidels, the Unfaithful, the Suppressives. Rarely has this formula been expressed with such consummate effrontery, like you go into a store to buy a suit the clerk puts you in a Condition of Doubt, you work all night in the stock room and go around with a gray rag around your arm and petition the entire store to let you back in so you can buy something.

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How Charles Manson Used Dale Carnegie’s Self-Help Training To Create His Murderous Cult

dale carnegieVia Businessweek, a fascinating nugget on using sunny self-improvement techniques for pure evil:

In his new book, Manson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson, author Jeff Guinn credits Dale Carnegie Training, the self-help program that’s shaped the lives of such people as Warren Buffett, with transforming Manson from “a low-level pimp” to the “frighteningly effective sociopath” who created a cult of killers in the late 1960s.

Manson took classes in “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” based on Carnegie’s iconic book, while doing time for car theft in a California federal prison in 1957. ”It was critical in shaping how he manipulated people,” says Guinn, noting that the young convict told people he’d enrolled to get strangers to open up to him.

Manson became especially obsessed with Chapter Seven, on how to get cooperation, and often practiced key lines in his cell, a former prison mate told Guinn.

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The Toll of Growing Up in a Religious Cult

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Pic: Mano Singhman (C)

Via ScienceDaily:

Children who grow up in religious cults face diffiulties not only during their childhood, but also after leaving the group.

That is the conclusion of research being presented today, Friday 12 July 2013, by the Chartered Psychologist Jill Mytton at the Annual Conference of the Society’s Division of Counselling Psychology in Cardiff.

In her research Jill Mytton worked with 262 adults (95 women and 167 men) who had lived in a religious group as children. Around 70 per cent of the sample lost their family on leaving, 27 per cent reported child sexual abuse and 68 per cent had found the experience of leaving traumatic.

She asked them to complete a battery of psychological measures. The results showed that the average scores of the 264 partiticpants on these measures were significantly higher than the general population.

Two other measurss — the Group Psychological Abuse Scale and the Extent of Group Identity Scale — were used to assess the group environment and the level of group involvement respectively, and significant correlations were found between them and all clinical measures.

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Pilots Report UFOs Over UK Scientology HQ

UK Scientology HQ. Photo: Martyn Davies (CC)

UK Scientology HQ. Photo: Martyn Davies (CC)

Like something out of one of L. Ron Hubbard’s science fiction novels… From the Daily News:

Close encounters of the Scientology kind:

Pilots aboard three passenger planes in the vicinity of London’s Gatwick Airport late last year reported seeing a pair of “flat, silver discs” hovering near the UK headquarters of the Church of Scientology.

Air traffic controllers also said that they saw six UFOs on radar screens before the objects disappeared, according to a report issued last week by the UK’s Airprox Board.

The board examines reports of air traffic safety violations in UK airspace and recommends safety measures. Last week’s report failed to find an explanation for the pilot sightings from last Dec. 30 at about 9 a.m. It did describe how a Boeing 777 pilot raised the alarm at 8:53 a.m. after spotting “two flat silver discs”over the Scientology headquarters in East Grinstead minutes from touchdown at Gatwick.

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Authorities Hunt For Leader Of Chilean Cult That Burned Baby Alive As “The Antichrist”

cult leaderBrainwashing by enlightenment drug? Authorities claim that ayahuasca was imbibed as a means of “controlling” the sect’s white-collar ranks. Via NBC News:

Chilean police on Thursday arrested four people accused of burning a baby alive in a ritual because the leader of the sect believed that the end of the world was near and that the child was the Antichrist. The 3-day-old baby was taken to a hill in the town of Colliguay on Nov. 21 and was thrown into a bonfire. The baby’s mother had allegedly approved the sacrifice and was among those arrested.

Authorities said the sect was led by Ramon Gustavo Castillo Gaete, 36, who remains at large. Castillo Gaete was last seen traveling to Peru to buy ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic brew plant that he used to control the members of the rite.

“Everyone in this sect was a professional,” Miguel Ampuero, of the Police Investigative Units, said.

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Texas High Schoolers Uncover Teacher’s Involvement In Sex Cult Murder

cult murderYour teachers’ lives may be more exciting than they seem. Via the Kansas City Star:

Tyler Deaton landed a job in February to teach pre-calculus at Lancaster High School near Dallas. But students Googled and found news stories from Kansas City with allegations that Deaton’s wife, Bethany, 27, was murdered as part of a coverup by a religious cult to hide a series of sexual assaults. The group’s supposed spiritual leader? Tyler Deaton.

Deaton has not been charged in his wife’s death. The person who has, Micah Moore, was part of Deaton’s religious group and lived with the couple at a house in Grandview. Other witnesses told authorities of a group who were making sex part of their religious experience and that men in the group sexually assaulted Bethany Deaton. Moore said Bethany Deaton was killed for fear she would talk, according to court documents.

When word spread through the halls of Lancaster last week, district officials suspended Deaton.

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Rewriting the Books of Mormon to Allow Black People

Modern Mormons are only slightly embarrassed about their founder Joseph Smith’s belief in polygamy, but they are definitely freaked out by the very public ban on Black people in their “church.” What do to? Rewrite their “scriptures” of course! NPR reports:

…The two biggest additions to the new edition of Mormon scripture can be found in the book of Doctrine and Covenants, says Givens, a professor of literature and religion at the University of Richmond, and they deal specifically with the church’s original ban on black priesthood ordination and polygamy.

Givens says Joseph Smith himself ordained black members of the church to the priesthood. But after Smith’s death, beginning in the late 1840s, Brigham Young apparently charted a new direction in terms, and began what became known as “the ban,” under which people of African-American ancestry were not permitted to hold the priesthood or to participate in temple ordinances.

“That was a policy that remained in place until 1978.

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Scientology Has Secret Alien-Themed Doomsday Compound In The New Mexico Desert

A science fiction movie sprung to life — the vast bunker is where Scientology’s elite will hide out when civilization breaks down, and the gigantic etched symbols, visible from above, likely are messages intended for the extraterrestrials who created humanity. Via Live Science:

A secret bunker hidden deep within the deserts of New Mexico is reported to be the “alien space cathedral” of the Church of Scientology, according to a BBC reporter. The site is marked by a large symbol etched onto the desert floor: two diamonds surrounded by a pair of overlapping circles, according to the British newspaper The Sun. A private airstrip, built to serve the controversial church’s leaders, is within walking distance of the symbol.

Journalist John Sweeney claims the church designed the underground site to withstand a nuclear holocaust. Hidden within the complex’s vaults are titanium caskets that hold gold disks inscribed with the original texts of Scientology founder L.

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China Arrests 500 Alleged Doomsday Cult Members

Have rumors of the apocalypse in China triggered mass panic and inspired a bizarre and horrific knifing spree? Or is the Mayan calendar proving useful for Chinese authorities as a scapegoat and justification for crackdown? Via the BBC:

Chinese police have arrested more than 500 members of a doomsday cult for spreading rumors about the imminent end of the world, state media say.

At least 400 followers of the Almighty God Christian group were detained in western Qinghai province in recent days. Dozens more were held elsewhere. China’s state news agency Xinhua describes the Almighty God Christian group as a cult, saying it was established in 1990 in Henan.

In Henan province, six officials have been sacked after a knife attack by a suspected doomsday cult disciple wounded more than 20 children. The attack sparked widespread anger. The officials sacked had handled the incident improperly, state media said.

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