Let me preface this entry with a few words about the roles that the extremes of perfection and abjection play in the mind control games of cult members. For example, a guru in the Hare Krishna movement, usually also a sannyasi or mendicant who has taken a life-long vow of celibacy, is referred to by his disciples as a “pure devotee,” or one who free of materialistic urges, principally those of lust and greed. In order to perpetuate this fiction, the guru declares himself the lowest of the low, which works to increase the blind adulation of his followers and also to blunt or sidestep the criticism of any skeptics in the audience. Sound familiar? Yes, most established religions seem to have a similar modus operandi, but there is a crucial difference: cults use the fiction of absolute purity of the guru or other leader as a means to train their disciples to mistrust their reasoning faculties and act according to any and all of the dictates of the cult leader. Terrorists whose zeal for a leader and an anachronistic set of ideals he represents are one manifestation of this the cult of extremism. In fact, I believe that the only difference between religious cult members and modern terrorists is the willingness of the latter to use women and children as human shields and, if that doesn’t get them killed, to murder them and any other innocent noncombatants at random. But both thugs and cult members have one thing in common and that is a leader whose lust for power and greed for fame are dependent on manipulating the lesser lust for sex and greed for money of their disciples. As you will yourself realize after reading the story about Maharani, even the “purest” devotee is not above the cardinal vice of using his disciples as chess pieces in a game of justifying the end by any means.
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