cults

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Sometimes You Want to Go

If only we could find a way to live together.

living_reminders

We Are Living Reminders

HBO’s The Leftovers and grief

Killing the Buddha

Means of Demolishing Thetans

JonJ in Philadelphia writes, responding to J. C. Hallman’s recent essay, “Killing the Thetan,” a critique of Lawrence Wright’s widely-discussed story on Scientology: Yes, Wright’s piece in the New Yorker is straight journalism, but just because it follows the canons of that branch of literature, I think it is all the more convincing a demolition…

"2008-03-15 Anonymous Hollywood Scientology protest" by Jason Scragz, via Flickr.

Killing the Thetan

On what The New Yorker’s coverage of Scientology lacks.

Moshe Rosen

In Jews-for-Jesus Heaven

Rabbi Bentzion Kravitz, the founder of Jews for Judaism, sounds forth on Moishe Rosen, the founder of Jews for Jesus, who died last week. Rabbi Kravitz, as my mother used to say, gives Rosen gut gesucht. He believed … that unless you believe in Jesus, you will burn in hell. This included the 6 million…

AWOL Lipstick by pawpaw67 via Flickr

Heathen Color

Lipstick as a means of escape.

Killing the Buddha

Wives Birthing Wives Birthing Wives

Childbirth is difficult enough without a picture of your leader who may or may not be checking out your goods (or scheduling your infant daughter’s marriage) smiling down at you throughout the ordeal @

ruthnorman

Jesus Is Just Alright

A crack in Kevlar cynicism reveals a time of tripped out mysterium tremendum in Southern California. A new excerpt from the new KtB collection, Believer, Beware.

I Can't Hear God Anymore

Become Cult-Aware in Dallas

The storied Dallas Morning News religion desk has fallen on hard times. A couple months ago, news came that the last religion reporters were reassigned to cover suburban schools or somesuch. That’s the advantage to the Killing the Buddha religion desk—in this organization, there’s nowhere else to go. It seems that, in lieu of actual…

ac1

Grrr, Aggressive Christianity

Sick of all that stuff about THE MEEK and THE PEACEMAKERS? The utter tepidity of regular churches got you down? Well have I got the new religious movement for you! Ryan Patrico recently gave me a heads-up about Aggressive Christianity, knowing my appreciation for adventures in religiosity. They’re a New Mexico-based (formerly Sacramento, CA) community…

Killing the Buddha

Short Discourse on Cult Terminology

Do you know the difference between a religion and a cult? Salman over at Irtiqa has a very welcome post about the terminology of these things. It’s the subject of a very significant debate in the study of contemporary religion today, especially since it has such real legal ramifications. These days, all eyes are on…

Killing the Buddha

How Do We Know We’re Not in a Cult?

For those of you deathly concerned about this question, we just got a letter from “FutureChurch” (a.k.a. Thomas Hohstadt) that may help: Dear friends, How do we know we haven’t reduced or simplified faith to the point of distorting it? Let’s face it, most of us actually assume we can fit God into our tiny…

cartwheels-cover

Cartwheels in a Sari

When you grow up cult, you learn to keep your mouth shut.

Rocky Mountain

Rocky Mountain Higher Power

Running low on enlightenment? Stock up at Colorado’s spiritual supermarket.

koresh

Righting Waco: Confessions of a Hollywood Propagandist

The author of a prime time apocalypse ponders ratings, truth and redemption.