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  • Pingback: The ‘Splainer: What does the apocalyptic jihad of ISIS mean for the rest of us? - mosaicversemosaicverse()

  • Pingback: The ‘Splainer: What does the apocalyptic jihad of ISIS mean for the rest of us? | Christian News Agency()

  • For years now we’ve heard two competing narratives: From the Left, that Islamist terrorism isn’t really Islamic, nor even religious at all. It’s motivated by repression and a lack of economic opportunity. Political reforms and jobs programs, apparently, would get rid of it. The Right has told us that Islam is an inherently violent religion and that all of its adherents are prone to become terrorists, if they aren’t already. Eradicating Islam, apparently, is the only way to get rid of it.

    Both of these now appear untrue. Yet we keep hearing rhetoric based upon them all the time. The Left still insists anyone who distrusts Islam because of the terror MUST be a “racist” because they reject the notion that religion can be involved. The Right still calls for crazy measures like registering all Muslims and closing mosques because of their obsession with getting rid of them.

  • The biggest concern here is not the apocalyptic beliefs, it is what drives people to accept such beliefs. When we consider the Middle East and how we either see wars or tyrannical leaders in place, it is not difficult to see why people can be recruited by groups like ISIS. And htus the solution would be to neither engage in war there nor to support tyrannical leaders. And yet, what is it that our elected leaders are constantly doing in the Middle East?

  • Robert Jay Lifton is mentioned within the article regarding his book “Destroying the World to Save it.” about the doomsday cult Aum Shinrikyo led by Shoko Asahara.

    Lifton also wrote a paper published at Harvard titled “Cult Formation” that explains the three core criteria that compose what can be seen as the nucleus for the definition of a destructive cult.

    Lifton listed the following three characteristics:

    1. A charismatic leader, who increasingly becomes an object of worship as the general principles that may have originally sustained the group lose power.

    2. A process [is in use] call[ed] coercive persuasion or thought reform.

    3.Economic, sexual, and other exploitation of group members by the leader and the ruling coterie.

    See http://www.culteducation.com/faq.html

    Lifton’s book “Thought Reform and Psychology of Totalism explains how authoritarian groups gain undue influence over people through a process of coercive persuasion.

    See http://culteducation

  • Very good observation. I would like to post that on Facebook if you don’t mind!

  • I don’t mind! Go ahead and share. Thank you!