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"Like a graveyard...
... people dig me"
25th-Aug-2006 09:18 pm
What makes a group a cult? Why?
26th-Aug-2006 02:31 am (UTC)
you'd have to ask my minions...
26th-Aug-2006 02:41 am (UTC)
In my opinion a group begins to become a cult when they start trying to isolate their members from people who aren't in the group/cult.

Although, I think the technical definition has something to do with having an ideology very far outside the mainstream.

I'm less sure as to why I tend to use this definition. Perhaps it is because social isolation is a very clear cut definition, as opposed to some of the more complex and subjective social undertones that one may use. (What is mainstream culture and thus what is opposed to it). It also prevents me from leaning too heavily on my, admittedly strong, opinions about desirable social behavior.
26th-Aug-2006 04:09 am (UTC)
A cult is a group of people devoted to beliefs which may contradict the majority of a greater society.

To the entire world, Christianity is a cult.

To Christians, Catholics are a cult.

To Catholics, the Lumen Dei are a cult.

That is, of course, just one intepretation of "cult".
26th-Aug-2006 12:22 pm (UTC)
...and when you read Church documents, every religion is a cult because they tend to operate by the old definition.
26th-Aug-2006 04:12 am (UTC)
honestly i think sometimes its just popularity & politics.

Eve & Co.
26th-Aug-2006 06:33 am (UTC)
A cult is defined by how much Koolaide its members are made to drink.

That, and the wild sex communes.

Seriously, I don't know the exact definition offhand, but I do have one in a text book that I can look up if you like.
27th-Aug-2006 11:10 pm (UTC)
Is Tang equivalent? What about Coca-Cola?
26th-Aug-2006 08:15 am (UTC) - linguistics lesson!
the level of devotion to a person or an ideal. Cult is origionally comes from the word cultus (adoration) or the verb colo (to worship) for which the passive perfect participle (cultum - "having been worshipped"). colo/cultum is interesting as one of the definitions can be "to cultivate". This leads to an interesting point that cultum could be taken to be "having been cultivated" where it is the personality or the ideal is cultivated in the followers and it's the way of handling followers that we use to label as a cult.
28th-Aug-2006 01:27 am (UTC) - Re: linguistics lesson!
That is very interesting and makes me wonder what I was thinking upstate: something is a cult by a person's relation to it. There are people who "cultify" professional sports, and so on.
26th-Aug-2006 12:01 pm (UTC)
I'm with Wikipedia on this one, though I suspect you meant something more like "What groups actually deserve that stigma?"
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