Monday, February 22, 2010

Am I in a Cult? (Part 1)

I've spent some time over the past couple of days--too much time, probably--reading around at the Forum maintained by a guy named Rick Ross, a prominent anti-cultist. I started reading because Margaret said that there was quite a bit of negative information about Zen Master Seung Sahn (you can read it from start to finish here). I noticed pretty quickly that a member who calls himself "The Anti-Cult" was especially driven to attack ZMSS, but that much of what he said was unfactual or a massive distortion of the facts. I've written a response to him, but  after reading a thread started by someone calling himself "Dr Logic," I realized that there's no point in trying to reason with "The Anti-Cult"--or anyone on the Forum. Most of the posters seem locked into a very rigid perspective in which any disagreement with them constitutes an effort to manipulate, even brainwash them.

It was especially unnerving to watch the Forum members begin attacking "Dr Logic," whose protests were then construed as attacks for which he was eventually banned from the Forum. There were lots of other instances where the Forum members, especially The Anti-Cult, would accuse Dr Logic of doing exactly the thing they themselves were doing. It was kind of like watching a microcosm of American political discourse--but somehow sadder.