answersLogoWhite

0

Religion & Spirituality
Philosophy and Philosophers
The Difference Between

What is the difference between a cult and a religion?


Top Answer
User Avatar
Wiki User
Answered 2010-11-03 11:31:24

Cults can occur inside of and outside a 'mainstream' religion (here I take it that the question is referring to the classical 'cults' whereby strong leaders have control over members of their group, rather than alternative definitions such as 'personality cults', or 'cults of devotion').

Three ideas seem essential to the concept of a cult.

1. Thinking in terms of us versus them with total alienation from "them."

2. The intense, though often subtle, indoctrination techniques used to recruit and hold members.

3. The charismatic cult leader. Cultism usually involves some sort of belief that outside the cult all is evil and threatening; inside the cult is the special path to salvation through the cult leader and his teachings.

The indoctrination techniques include:

Subjection to stress and fatigue;

Social disruption, isolation and pressure;

Self criticism and humiliation;

Fear, anxiety, and paranoia;

Control of information;

Escalating commitment;

Use of auto-hypnosis to induce "peak" experiences

Cults are absent of the betterment of the individual person but rather than leader only. Cults try to subvert the human will with total and complete obedience to the leader of a group or sect

Conclusion

The term 'cult' tends to be used as a term of abuse. As shown above, there are stringent guidelines for defining whether a body of people (whether religious, lifestyle orientated, political) are a cult or not. An example of of cult outside of 'mainstream' religion is David Koresh. Within 'mainstream' religion we have the cult around Chris Brain at the 'Nine o'clock service' in Sheffield, within the Anglican church.

001
๐Ÿ™
0
๐Ÿคจ
0
๐Ÿ˜ฎ
0
๐Ÿ˜‚
0
User Avatar

Your Answer

Loading...

Still have questions?

Related Questions

Who said the only difference between a cult and a religion is a hundred years?

the editor of Washington Weekly


What is the difference between cult and occult?

gcbcb


What is the difference between religion and Islam?

There is no difference. Islam is a religion.


What is the difference between a gang and a cult?

A gang: a group of people with mutual interest.A cult: a group of people with religious beliefs.


Why is the Mormon religion considered a cult?

It isn't considered a cult.


Is Roman Catholicism a cult?

No, Catholicism is not a cult. It is the Christian religion.


Is jashinism a cult?

Technically no. A cult refers to a splinter religion. Jashinism is indeed a very real religion.


Is Catholic Church a cult?

No, the Catholic Church is a mainstream religion, the first and original Christian religion. It is not a cult.


What are difference between religion and philosophy?

The difference between religion and philosophy is that religion gives unwarranted answers while philosophy asks questions.


What are the difference between mainstream religions and cults?

Great question. Here is the definition of "cult" from the Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary--1: formal religious veneration : worship2:a system of religious beliefs and ritual ; also : its body of adherents3: a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious ; also : its body of adherentsSo any religion can be considered a cult but in popular usage, "cult" has definition #3 above. Then it gets very subjective. For example, Christianity is the largest religion in the world but when it started, the religious establishment considered it "unorthodox or spurious". Debates rage over whether certain religions such as the Scientologists or the Mormons are a "cult" or a "mainstream religion". Some religions would consider any religion that is not itself a "cult".So there is no "official" division between "cult" and "mainstream religion"--this is an entirely subjective opinion.Certain "mainstream religions" are in my own personal opinion quite spurious or false, but are not considered "cults".


Is Scientology a wealthy person's religion?

Its not a religion, its a cult. I suppose it is a wealthy person's religion because you have to pay them to join and reach higher levels in the cult.


What religion is declined in Russia?

the cult of Scientology as it is considered a destructive and non beneficial religion also my cult isn't allowed in Russia as my cult is the flying spaghetti monster


What is the religion of Spokane Indians?

there religion was Christianity and Dreamer Cult


What religion is beckham?

Cult of Celebrity


Is the Catholic religion a cult?

no, not at all


Is Hinduism a cult?

Hindu is a religion


What is the difference between Catholic religion and Christian religion?

Roman Catholic AnswerThe question, as asked, makes no sense, as the Catholic religion IS the Christian religion, thus there is no difference.


Is the Catholic Church a cult?

The Catholic Church exhibits very few, if any of the typical signs of a cult. It is accepted as a religion, not a cult.


What is the religion of CM PUNK?

He Is A Cult Of Personnalty


Is santeria a cult?

No, Santeria is a religion/faith.


What is another term for a new religion?

A cult


Is Morman religion a cult?

You answered you're own question. It's a religion not a cult. But of course it depends on how you define cult. At one point in it's history (like every other religion) it was technically a cult because it was a small group of people with different beliefs, but now it has almost 14 million members and is known everywhere.


What is one difference between Buddhism and himduism?

religion


Is the Church of Scientology a cult?

The word "cult" is not well defined, and basically boils down to "religion the speaker/author doesn't like." I personally am a little conflicted by calling it a "cult" mainly because that implies that it's an actual religion, and not a scam masquerading as a religion for the tax benefits.


Is the Roman Catholic religion a cult?

No, the Catholic Church is the first and primary of all Christian religions. It is not a cult.