Essay about Characteristics Of Cult Classification Of The Family

1154 Words Nov 30th, 2016 5 Pages
The Family holds many characteristics that classify it as a cult rather than any other new religious movement, and it will hold that classification unless it undergoes some serious structural changes. By looking at this group through the lenses of different theories pertaining to cult classification, I am confident in saying that this group meets enough qualifications to put it into the ‘cult’ grouping. The Family is a new religious movement that I am defining as a cult. It hits on all the qualifications concerning leadership, structure, recruitment, and deprivation theories. Differing from a sect, The Family “… does not call for a return to the original, pure religion, but rather emphasizes the new” , because it seeks to interpret the Bible and fundamental Christianity in a way that has not been done before. This cult’s displeasure with society and it’s want to find their own truth and forge its own way in the world are two of the main characteristics of a cult, thus fitting it into the ‘cultic formation’ category. One of the fundamental characteristics that distinguishes a cult from a sect is that a cult often has a charismatic leader. This leader often reveres themselves as a prophet, a messenger from God, or the savior of humankind. David Berg, the founder of The Family, believed these statements to be true about himself, and continued to gain power and control over the cult throughout his lifetime. The need to be centered around a leader stemmed the specific formation…

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