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English-language version of Luistxo Fernandez's blog

Crazy invented religious beliefs

Luistxo Fernandez 2013/06/19 17:34
Two recent reads, two books about modern American religions: Scientology and Mormonism. And a comment about a Basque killer buddhist monk.

Inside Scientology: The Story of America’s Most Secretive Religion, by Janet Reitman.

A fascinating subject. The weirdness of Scientology’s believe system is summarized quite briefly, but that’s not the main thing; I have learned more interesting facts reading the book. The atmosphere of control described, the newspeak they use (“religious technology”, “ethics”), and the personalities of the two leaders this cult has known: Hubbard the founder, and current leader David Miscavige, who succeeded astonishingly to gain control of the organisation being barely a 20-year old man.

Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith: Jon Krakauer

Krakauer's story follows the trail of the perpetrators (the Lafferty brothers) of a horrible crime (mother and child killed by fundamentalist mormon relatives), and from that point, it goes back and forth in history, tracing the history of Mormonism, its "prophet" tradition and the very particular history of polygamy within the cult. Astonishing the similarities between Islam and Mormonism.

Both religions/cults are very much clearly fabrications of a couple of manipulative leaders. Most of the faithful in other religions would agree with that. But, then, the obvious question is: well, they're made up religions but... opposed to WHAT?

Recently, a crime has stunned the main Basque city, Bilbao. A buddhist monk killed (at least) two women. Someone who called himself a Shaolin monk, taught kung-fu and said he had founded a monastery. He has been immediatly branded as a "false" monk, because allegedly he hasn't any certification from China. But, he is false, as opposed to what? He is as false as the Lafferty brothers are false prophets: moreover, I would say that the nature of the Shaolin monk's murders, if anything, point to the a true believer's zeal and illumination.


Luistxo works in CodeSyntax, tweets as @Luistxo and tries to manage the automated newssite Niagarank. This Cemetery is part of a distributed multilingual blog (?!). These are the Basque and Spanish versions:

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