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Some NRMs are characterized by an apocalyptic or millenarian dimension—the belief that the end of the world is imminent and that a new heaven or new earth will replace the old one.
There are apocalyptic strains in many world religions, but it is Christian millenarianism—the belief that Jesus Christ will establish a 1,000-year reign of peace on earth before the Last Judgment—that has formed the backdrop for the development of many of the NRMs in the West.
In 1978, after a group of concerned family members (led by a U. congressman) visited the group’s commune, Jones and his followers (913 persons in all) committed what Jones called “revolutionary suicide” rather than submit to what they thought would be an attempt to compromise their community.
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The New Age movement is an extremely eclectic conglomeration of beliefs and practices that includes channeling, crystal healing, new versions of shamanism, and a variety of therapies and techniques designed to “transform” the individual into a “higher consciousness.” The movement as a whole optimistically presumes that the world has entered, or is on the verge of entering, a “New Age” (sometimes referred to as the “Age of Aquarius”) of unprecedented spiritual possibilities.
A darker side of apocalyptic expectations has resulted in mass suicides and tragic conflict with governmental agencies.
The most influential of these doctrines were Hindu monistic beliefs, which maintain that the cosmos is wholly sacred or participates in a single divine principle (Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, and its many offshoots—integrated Indian philosophical and religious concepts into a synthesis that also drew on Western mysticism, Neoplatonism, Kabbala, religious monism, and communication with the spirit world. Based on the monistic teachings of one of Hinduism’s philosophical schools and on its interpretation of the teachings and mystical experiences of Vivekananda’s teacher, Ramakrishna (1836–86), the Vedanta Society attracted the attention of many prominent members of the artistic community: the French actress Sarah Bernhardt, the American author and publisher Paul Carus, the English novelist Aldous Huxley, and the Anglo-American novelist and playwright Christopher Isherwood, among others.
With centres in India and throughout the world, the Vedanta Society (also known as the Ramakrishna Mission) promotes a highly eclectic and tolerant form of religious unity.
The group, an offshoot of the Seventh-day Adventist church, first settled near Waco in 1935.
After a succession of leaders and internal power struggles, Vernon Howell, who later assumed the name David Koresh, took control of the group in 1987.
Conversion to ISKCON entails not only a shift in religious belief and practice but an entire break with Western culture, symbolized by the adoption of Indian dress and diet and by the shaving of male followers’ heads.
Such radical signs of alienation from Western culture and values, together with the group’s active proselytizing dimension and its internal crises and leadership struggles, engendered much controversy about the Hare Krishnas.
has been applied to all new faiths that have arisen worldwide over the past several centuries.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating