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February 18, 2011 / Man in the Mirror

Cult Leaders: Questioning the Leader

You cannot criticize, disagree, or doubt. To doubt or disagree with the leader’s authority is to doubt and disagree with God.”

Anyone who does not question, challenge, or allow himself to doubt, sets himself up to be deceived.

In addition to doubt and critical thinking, we should openly consider what we see and hear, examine it, and check into it to get the facts. If someone presents new information, we should “investigate and search out and inquire thoroughly”.

We need to exercise both open-mindedness and critical thinking skills, and a reasonable amount of assertiveness to confront error.

In other groups, there are many other kinds and degrees of behaviors that members might call into question, even teachings, doctrines, activities, and various requirements. The controlling leaders and their committed followers have subtle ways of nipping your differing views in the bud or at least suppressing them. If you doubt or disagree, here are some ways, perhaps even mildly, that they may respond to you: “Have a teachable spirit.” “Don’t cause disunity.” “It sounds like Satan is working on you.”

If you merely have a question, they may put you off in some way, perhaps telling you to go home and pray about it. They might say, “You don’t understand now, but you will” which for them is simply a way to avoid the issue and hide their agenda.

Some groups have members engage in certain forms of meditation, chanting, or repetition of phrases. The purpose of these exercises is not to draw you closer to God, but to get your mind to suppress doubts about the group and the leader.

The cult leader that I interacted with, would always chant a religious sentence. Although I believe in that sentence and I have no problems in repeating it but the cult leader would make his group members repeat the sentence more when there were disputes or doubts in anyone’s minds.

Ultimately no one would continue the argument or express their thoughts after the chanting because they would feel it be going against God.

The religious sentence was always used after any decision was orchestrated by the cult leader. It left the group members’ thinking that perhaps the decision was the one they had to follow…that it was what God wanted.

On the contrary, anyone who does not allow himself to doubt, question, examine, and test, sets himself up to be deceived. Similar to the “teachable spirit” response is, “We are more mature than you. God has appointed us as your spiritual guides. So who are you to doubt and disagree with our leadership?”.

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