November: Cult Awareness Month

To my knowledge, there is no registered “Cult Awareness Month” designated to commemorate notable events associated with spiritual abuse. However, if I were to create such a memorial it would have to be in November. And that’s what we are proposing to do this month through social media. Some of us are already engaged in bringing awareness to the public through our Facebook pages and speaking engagements, but some have good reasons to keep a low profile and that is understandable. For those who can participate, we’re inviting you to make November CULT AWARENESS MONTH with us by posting more than the usual information about Jehovah’s Witnesses and/or the psychological studies on shunning and cults in general on your social media pages. There is no shortage of videos, news articles, personal blogs, and websites like this from which to choose.

Why November?

November 5, 2018: Did you know this is the One Year Anniversary of the Monumental Protest in Warwick, New York?
We invite you to view the coverage we compiled on it here: Did you feel the mountains tremble on November 5, 2017?
November 13, 2018: She raised awareness about her own involvement with Scientology, now don’t miss Leah Remini’s follow up special on Jehovah’s Witnesses on A&E November 13th at 9PM.
November 18, 2018: 40th Anniversary of the Jonestown Massacre in which cult leader Jim Jones murdered over 900 of his followers by convincing them to drink poisoned kool aid.
As the saying goes, “those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it.” So we invite you to remember with us the lives lost to the cult in Guyana known as “The People’s Temple” and “Jonestown.”
Truth and Lies: Jonestown, Paradise Lost
Interestingly, this past October 5-7, 2018 was also the 40th Anniversary of The Witnesses Now for Jesus Conference which raises awareness about Jehovah’s Witnesses through testimonies of former members and topics pertaining to teachings and policies in the Watchtower organization.

What Is A Cult?

There are many sociological aspects we can examine to determine if a group fits the criteria of a “cult,” but one of the easiest models to use in evaluating cult mind-control is given by Steven Hassan in his book Releasing the Bonds: Empowering People to Think for Themselvespublished in 2000 by Freedom of Mind Press, Somerville MA.  In chapter two, he gives four basic components of mind control, which form the acronym BITE. We will examine a brief summary of these elements, apply them to both Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons and contrast each cult control element with true Biblical teaching.  You will see by the examples given below, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons implement cult mind-control on their followers to various degrees.  Some elements of mind-control will be more evident than others.  The simple fact that one may find mind-control elements existing within a group does not necessarily mean that the group should categorically be labeled a “cult,” but when the majority of mind-control elements examined below are being exercised within the group, the label “cult” can honestly be applied.

B – Behavior Control 
I – Information Control
T – Thought Control
E – Emotional Control

For the complete article on this see Are Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons a Cult?

As a former member of the Watchtower Society, I was fully aware that people considered my religion to be a cult. Yet I maintained that I was in “the truth.” That’s not surprising to hear from current members as they are regularly instructed never to view any material that holds the Watchtower up to scrutiny. Therefore, the only explanation of what a cult is that members will ever read is from the official website of The Watchtower Society who has answered the question for them Are Jehovah’s Witnesses A Cult?

In the interest of respecting the B.I.T.E model provided above, we feel it only fair to let the public discern through their own research without such “information control.” And so won’t you join us in setting aside November as CULT AWARENESS MONTH?

To start off with some general education on cults without naming any specifically, here is an interesting suggestion.

Mind Control Cults 

And if you’d like to raise awareness about Jehovah’s Witnesses or Mormons specifically, we encourage you to share anything from our website that has been helpful to you!

Keep yourself in God’s love, 
Julie 

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