For the next 40 days He was seen by more than eyewitnesses. His wounds were touched and He ate meals. He physically ascended to Heaven. Jesus will come again visibly and physically at the end of the world to establish God's kingdom and judge the world. For an in depth study concerning the prophecies of Jesus in the Old Testament that were fulfilled in the New Testament The Holy Spirit is a person, not a force or energy field. He comforts, grieves, reproves, convicts, guides, teaches , and fills Christians.
He is not the Father, nor the Son, Jesus Christ. Salvation is by God's grace alone and not by an individual's good works. Salvation must be received by faith and repentance. People must believe in their heart that Jesus died for their sins and physically rose again, which is the assurance of forgiveness and resurrection of the body.
This is the plan God revealed through the scriptures and through Jesus to saved lost humanity. At death the saved go to be with Jesus. After death, all people await the final Judgment. Both saved and lost people will be resurrected. Those who are saved will live with Jesus in Heaven. Parents are naturally very concerned lest their own children are drawn into the activities of a cult and away from the principles they have been taught in their families. Warnings are sometimes given about different groups who target those who are young and impressionable.
We need to know the factors that mark out cults, and what it is that can make them dangerous or lead to tragedies like those in Jonestown. We need first of all to determine the factors that create a cult. Is anyone who believes differently from us, automatically a member of a cult? Some literature circulated by various cult help groups suggests that any organisation that does not accept the teachings of the mainstream Christian churches is a cult. But is it right for all non-conformists to be likened to the fanatical groups we have briefly considered? What exactly is a cult? Are all minority religions cults?
We are not helped very much by the word itself, which refers simply to worship, devotion or homage. By definition, sects are minority groups. They may be regarded with a degree of suspicion because of the different views they promote, but rarely do they constitute a serious threat. The Pharisees did not always agree with other religious Jews, notably the ruling Sadducees see Acts , but their existence was not regarded as a serious threat to others.
Also when Paul accepted the gospel of Christ and became his apostle, he recognised that the Jews were suspicious of his joining a group with different beliefs. Cult is a more sinister term with overtones of persuading individuals against their will and against their better judgement.
It must not be confused with simply holding different beliefs. Non-conformists Down through the ages almost all non-conformist groups were ostracised by the established church and therefore by society in general. Even the reformers of the 16th century — Luther, Calvin, Zwingli and others — appeared outrageous to the majority of the population. Leaving aside the question of whether these or other non-conformists were misguided in their beliefs, they were standing apart for conscientious reasons, usually based on interpretations of the Bible. While it is possible for a religious sect to be a cult, cults separate and alienate themselves on the basis of social organisation and behaviour, and often in an aggressive fashion, not simply because their beliefs do not match the majority view.
Governments have struggled with the concept of outlawing organisations they believe to pose a danger, and have generally followed the definitions given above to determine which organisations are sects and which can be classified as cults. All these factors are intended to make the group very close-knit; they bond individual members to the group, but more particularly to the leader — who is usually a very charismatic and dominant personality. In the process of being bonded to the group and its leader, members are gradually alienated from the rest of society, and in extreme cases are removed totally from society to live as if they have nothing to do with normal life.
Isolation Some of the ways this isolation is achieved are distinctly worrying.
Potential recruits to the group are encouraged to distance themselves from family and friends — all those who are likely to have the greatest influence upon them. Separated from previous contacts, the recruits are subjected to intense persuasion by group members. This peer group pressure quickly replaces the previous influence of family and friends.
They are never left alone for long periods to collect and recover their thoughts, and by an insistence on attending long sessions that deprive them of sleep any natural resistance is quickly destroyed. The effect of this withdrawal from society in general is often revealed only when an individual who has been attracted to a cult seeks to leave it. Great pressure is applied — psychological pressure, and sometimes physical force too — to encourage the individual to change his or her mind.
Family members who have not joined the group are described as enemies, and leaving the group is seen to be a personal attack upon the leader himself. Dominant leaders Dependence on the leader is encouraged by a series of complex games with rules imposed by the leader. Chanting and singing form a large part in the repertoire of bonding individuals to the group.
It is well known that this practice quickly blocks rational thought processes, like a form of brainwashing. Together with a special diet, often nutritionally inadequate, recruits become more susceptible to suggestions that would otherwise be immediately dismissed. It is easy to see how this approach can quickly tip over into even more unacceptable practices, where a leader uses his influence to bind recruits to him by sexual domination. Sometimes recruits have to hand over all their personal wealth to the group and, because they live in accommodation provided for them, are soon completely indebted to the group for everything they need.
The definitions that have been developed, and the aspects that classify an organisation as a cult, are important when we come to consider minority, non-conformist groups. This booklet, for example, has been prepared by Christadelphians. In some literature published about cults, warnings are sounded against the beliefs and practices of Christadelphians. Are these warnings justified? Christadelphians From the definitions we have tried to make, we hope it would be agreed, despite what some groups say about Christadelphians, that even though they are definitely non-conformists, and in the scriptural sense a sect, they are certainly not a cult.
As a community, Christadelphians do not accept some of the teachings of the mainstream Christian churches. Sergeant Tatsuya Toyama, a member of an elite Japanese paratrooper unit, was at the wheel. Inoue sat beside him. There was another paratrooper in the back, one more curled up in the trunk.
Once inside the compound, Toyama stood guard, swinging a flashlight. The others walked swiftly into the building. Then the thieving began. Inoue's team logged onto MHI's mainframe and downloaded megabytes of restricted files onto a laptop computer. What they couldn't fit on disks was photocopied or simply pilfered. Among Inoue's loot was a description of laser sighting devices for tank guns, and a document - marked "Top Secret to Company Outsiders" - containing data on laser technology to enrich uranium.
Afterward, Toyama helped carry cardboard boxes full of documents and disks out to the car. Then Inoue and his squad drove out the way they'd come in - through the front gate. Breaking into MHI was so easy that Inoue returned again - and again. The information he stole was funneled back to Aum scientists, injecting new energy into the sect's grandiose designs to develop a dazzling variety of futuristic weapons. Chief among them was the laser, which Aum had been studying for several years. In fact, just two months before the MHI break-in, residents at Mount Fuji had witnessed a bizarre sight - a sharp beam of red light streaking across the night sky.
It was 4 inches wide and emanated from one of Aum's buildings. For two hours, the beam was locked on to another sect facility about a mile away. Cultists later told locals that Aum was merely conducting a "laser irradiation experiment. They were out to make laser weapons. The cult's firearms factory had used laser cutters capable of slicing through iron plates since April But the guru had long been obsessed with the dark beauty of lasers.
This is the sword referred to in the Book of Revelation. This sword will destroy virtually all life. After all, what was a high-tech death cult without the classic "death ray" seen in a thousand sci-fi movies? But lasers were just one of myriad technologies preoccupying the sect's mad scientists. On one encrypted optical disk, they had compiled a wish list of cutting-edge research: studies on advanced liquid and gel explosives, blueprints of rocket ignitions, data on missile targeting systems for fighter jets - Aum wanted it all.
But while Aum prepared for Armageddon, the extraordinary happened - Armageddon came early. On January 17, , an earthquake of awesome power struck Kobe in central Japan, toppling freeways, crumbling apartment blocks, and igniting a firestorm of destruction. For Asahara, the Kobe earthquake was stunning proof of the coming apocalypse. Aum's chief scientist Hideo Murai, however, did not believe the quake was an act of God.
He was a scientist after all, and scientists have rational explanations. This device, he added, was possibly operated by the US military.
Murai's attempts to explain further were drowned out by derisive snorts from reporters. A device capable of triggering massive seismic movements sounded hopelessly sci-fi and far-fetched.
But as it turned out, Aum wasn't the first to be fascinated by the idea. Tesla studied the possibility of transmitting electric energy over long distances by taking advantage of electromagnetic waves emitted by Earth - in effect, using the planet as a giant, wireless conductor. In at Colorado Springs, Tesla lit hundreds of lamps about 40 kilometers away using a large induction coil, a device that produces an electric current by changing magnetic fields.
He afterward claimed that the same method could in theory be used to send a signal through the Earth that could be picked up on the other side. Nikola Tesla's remarkable mind led him to a field we now know as telegeodynamics. Here his theories grew extraordinary. He believed that by manipulating the Earth's electromagnetic forces, one could dramatically affect both climate and seismic activity; in other words, play god. Tesla warned that his discovery could split the planet in two - "split it as a boy would split an apple - and forever end the career of man.
Although many geologists dismiss this notion as comic-book nonsense, recent research has shown that earthquakes are preceded by unusual emissions of low-frequency electromagnetic waves, produced by small cracks in lower layers of plates in the Earth's crust. Tesla's ideas were in fact taken very seriously by both the US and Soviet militaries. Portions of the man's papers, seized by the US government after his death, remain classified even today.
Some US experts reportedly believe the Soviets used a "seismic weapon" to trigger an earthquake in Beijing in An earthquake machine! It's not hard to see why the idea excited Murai. He wanted to know more, and that's where the six members of the Japan Secret Nikola Tesla Association came in. A month after the Kobe quake, the members began a series of trips to the Tesla museum in Belgrade, where many of his papers reside.
There they searched for data on seismology and electromagnetism.
Meanwhile, the cult's New York office contacted the International Tesla Society in the US, asking for information on Tesla's inventions, patents and writings. The Kobe tremor may have been an act of God. Hideo Murai was determined that Japan's next earthquake would be an act of Aum. The hit squad drove out of Mount Fuji at sunset. There were five of them - one doctor and four vice ministers in the Science and Technology Ministry.
The men chosen to unleash terror in the heart of Tokyo were among Aum's, and Japan's, brightest minds. The first was Dr. Ikuo Hayashi. As the brains behind Aum's clinics, the good doctor had coldly presided over the wholesale doping, torture, and death of many followers. Still, he found it hard crossing the line from gross medical malpractice to mass murder, if later reports are to be believed. Hayashi said. Less likely to refuse the mission was the squad's second member, Yasuo Hayashi. The good doctor's namesake was a 6-foot-tall ethnic Korean who had grown up in Tokyo.
Hayashi was a mean-looking year-old with Neanderthal brows and a fur of acne on each cheek. His qualifications included an electrical engineering degree and a criminal record of substance abuse. His fascination with the supernatural had led him to India, then to drugs, and then to Aum. He became a monk in , and proved adept at abduction, wiretapping, and intimidation. The subway attack would earn him a new nickname from Japan's media: "Killer Hayashi. The next man, year-old Kenichi Hirose, had graduated at the top of his class in applied physics from Waseda University in He turned down a job at a big electronics firm to join the cult, but often returned to the university to question his professor about laser research.
The professor was baffled by Hirose's choice.
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Masato Yokoyama, 31, was another graduate in applied physics. His classmates at Tokai University outside Tokyo remember him as a quiet student who dressed in preppy clothes and enjoyed bowling. On graduation he joined an electronic parts maker and secretly attended Aum yoga classes.
Then one day Yokoyama presented his boss with a cult book. On the last page of the book, he had scribbled: "Those who handle this book carelessly will pay for it. The fifth and final attacker was year-old Toru Toyoda. He studied particle physics as a graduate student at Tokyo University, Japan's top school, where his copious note taking made him popular among classmates. Toyoda was relatively outgoing.
Before joining the cult, he entertained his fellow lab rats with a mean impersonation of Shoko Asahara during Aum's election campaign. The guru had the last laugh.
Indeed, all this had been predicted before, he told the others. Other Social Studies - History , Psychology. Archived from the original on July 30, But their son simply handed them a copy of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, the onetime best-seller about a seagull's struggle to learn to fly. More frightening still, it will happen again.
Toyoda was converted to Aum by another Tokyo University student and, in the spring of , signed up. On the morning of March 20, , these five Aum members blended with the rush-hour crowds in Tokyo's subways. The cultists boarded five trains at different ends of the vast network. They knew the exact times and locations for each train and each station. They also knew that by a. It was here that Aum's high-tech terrorists would strike their preemptive blow - to paralyze the Japanese state and begin the cult's historic mission of world domination.
Police were threatening to raid cult facilities, leaving Aum no choice but to attack first. By a. A few stops from Kasumigaseki, the cultists laid their bags on the car floors and punctured them with the umbrella tips. Then, as the car doors opened, they darted into crowds and out of the station, where getaway cars waited.
Only one cultist seemed aware of the carnage ahead. Aum physician Hayashi was standing on the Chiyoda line platform. The doctor was having a last-minute fit of morals. He looked around and saw a young girl waiting in line behind him. Go away, he thought. If you get on here, you'll die. The train pulled up. Hayashi boarded the first car, as instructed, and sat close to the door. He caught the eye of a woman in her 30s and quickly looked away. You too will be dead soon, he thought. His sarin package was wrapped in two newspapers: Red Flag, the Japanese Communist Party daily, and Seikyo Shimbun, published by a rival religious group.
Hayashi hoped the choice of reading would later throw police off. His station was announced over the intercom, and the train slowed with a lurch of brakes. Kasumigaseki was now four stops away. Hayashi placed the package at his feet and stuck the umbrella in several times. He felt one of the bags rupture, but wasn't sure about the second one. He wasn't waiting around to find out. Hayashi and the four other cultists were back on the street, looking for their drivers.
Soon after, the cars were nudging through morning traffic, heading back to the hideout. In the tunnels below, 11 bags of nerve agent on five subway cars thundered toward the city center, along with thousands of unlucky commuters. Within minutes, the air in the cars was thick with choking, invisible fumes, and passengers were groaning with nausea. On one train, a man kicked the offensive package onto the platform when the doors opened, but not before two commuters collapsed on the ground, their bodies shuddering with spasms.
Incredibly, the train did not stop, but pulled out a minute later, bang on time. It would make two more stops until the growing panic inside the cars reached critical mass. Passengers tumbled from the train, gagging and vomiting, clutching handkerchiefs across their faces, gasping for breath. Five collapsed on the platform, foaming at the mouth.
Three others lay inside the car, their bodies jerking violently. As commuters staggered toward the exits with pinhole vision and crashing headaches, an announcement echoed across the station: "Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate. Above ground it was pandemonium. Pavements and roads were blanketed with casualties. The victims were eerily quiet - the nerve gas had crippled their lungs and stolen their voices. Soon ambulance sirens cut through the silence, and TV helicopters throbbed overhead. Even as police tried to work out what had happened, more reports were coming in.
Soon, wave after wave of blind, disoriented victims flooded nearby hospitals, baffling doctors with their symptoms. Meanwhile, Tokyo's brutally efficient subway continued to spread Aum's killer chemical.
negahimul.tk One train passed through Kasumigaseki three times before its deadly cargo was discovered.