RE: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme

From: Lawrence DeBivort (
Date: Mon Feb 18 2002 - 13:33:46 GMT

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    From: "Lawrence DeBivort" <>
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    Subject: RE: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme
    Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2002 08:33:46 -0500
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    Well said, Wade. There is a general tendency within any organization to view
    the departure of members as a threat, as it provides an implicit criticism
    of those 'left behind'. Cults of any ilk go, I think we agree, beyond this
    general tendency by proactively providing punishments to those who do, even
    when it is legal for a member to leave. (This last provision to distinguish
    cults from, say, the military.)

    The nuclear family -- can you say more about your thought on this?


    > From: []On Behalf
    > Of Wade T.Smith
    > On Sunday, February 17, 2002, at 01:10 , Lawrence DeBivort wrote:
    > > What does, IMHO, separate cults and religions from other belief
    > > systems, is
    > > that they [snip] make it particularly hard for their
    > > targets to [snip] leave the [snip] system.
    > Yes. You don't hear 'go back where you came from!' inside a cult too
    > often.
    > On the same hand, try to eat meat in a vegan restaurant. Or vote
    > republican in Cambridge, MA.
    > There is an opposition to almost any and all heresy, in any cultural
    > enclave. And once you're part of one, they want you to stay. The real
    > problem with cults is that they don't allow you to _know_ anything else,
    > and they draw the walls closer every time you look out the window.
    > Try to do science in a homeopathic clinic.
    > The problem with having to do as the Romans do while in Rome, is that
    > everyone thinks they are in the only Rome.
    > The narrow range of a cult's cultural environment is also a mirror of
    > the nuclear family.
    > - Wade

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