Wednesday, February 23, 2005

"About Destructive Religious Groups"

The United Ministry at Harvard lists some characteristics of destructive religious groups:

* a leader who claims divinity, or a special relationship to God
* a leader who is sole judge of a member's actions or faith
* aspirations to total control over a member's life
* development of unhealthy emotional dependence on the group or leader
* prohibition of critical analysis or independent thinking
* exploitation of a member's finances
* exclusivity and isolation
* ego destruction, mind control, manipulation of a member's relationships with family and friends