On 06 Feb 2013, at 20:06, meekerdb wrote:

On 2/6/2013 1:25 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:


On 06 Feb 2013, at 04:00, meekerdb wrote:

On 2/5/2013 11:02 AM, Craig Weinberg wrote:



On Tuesday, February 5, 2013 1:14:07 PM UTC-5, John Clark wrote:
On Tue, Feb 5, 2013  PM, Craig Weinberg <whats...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Unpopular religions are denounced as cults.

A religion is just a cult with good PR.

It's interesting. I would be curious to know whether every established religion intentionally sought legitimacy at some point,

What would that mean? Legal? Where there is official government recognition of religion (and probably tax breaks) the answer would be that they sought the recognition. And all that you can consider 'established' have sought adherents. But "legitimacy"?? I'm not sure how that world can be attached to "religion".

In my country, that is the case. Religions have to be recognized by the government. If not they are classified as sect, and are forbidden (like scientology). It is awkward and arbitrary, but that's simply the case.

I'm curious.  How do they get recognized?

Arbitrarily. basically great known religion are accepted (the Abramanic one and, Hinduism, Buddhism). With the other you have to be careful when recruiting, and try to look like an association without financial interests. Typically a sect will be considered as such if people complain on sectarian activity, the most typical one being the subtraction of the children from the parents.


Do they have to apply, or does the government have some standard (numbers?) by which they automatically get recognized? Do they have to file some statement of doctrine/theology/dogma with the government so that it can be determined whether a group is a splinter sect or a different religion? Is Mormonism recognized?

It is not. Now if there are enough people adhering, and if the religion is widespread in some places, they can have a chance. Most people accept this state of affair, because we do have an history of "bad sects" leading to collective suicide. Scientology has oscillated between some form of acceptance and reject. Eventually, when too much people complains, like it has been the case for scientology, the government get its attention turned on them, and they disintegrate the sect, which sometimes come back with another name. Jehovah witness are tolerated because they are numerous, and considered as a variant of christians. Most male members were sent to jail, though, because they refused the military service, when it was obligatory for all.

Bruno





Brent

The result is that sect become secret societies, so it is even harder to get rid of them, or for adherent to ever been able to get out of the influence. It is a real social dramatic problem. Then corruption makes also some sect still developing, like notably scientology.

Bruno


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http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/



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