The Need to Belong

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The Need to Belong

Post02 Jun 2008

The Need to Belong - posted by: Atma on July 23, 2004

Initially, I was going to title this topic “The attraction of the cult”. Then I thought I would put it in more positive - and broader - terms. Hence, “The need to belong”. That is a deep and fundamental human need: the need to belong to something larger than the self, larger than one’s immediate family. I short, the need to identify with and experience a sense of belonging to a community.

Many have noted that this need is often the “bait” cults use to lure so many broken souls into their web. In post industrial revolution society, where many are alienated because of the “rat race” and impersonal realities, people experience a pleasant “break” from that alienation in the group scene that the cult provides. Suddenly, a warm fuzzy world opens up. A world of like minded “family”. And all apparently, having the same goals and the same path to get to those goals. This oasis of kinship and belonging is also a great relief for those who find themselves marginalized immigrants in host societies

In the BK path, the concepts of “community” and “home” are seductively amplified. “Community” is loving (although detached) and pure “divine family”. A family of elevated swans. And “home” has multiple layers. There is the ultimate “home”: the Soul World - a world of sweet peace and (orange? light. Then there is “home” in the cyclic sense: the fabulous Golden Age. The time of divine Kings and Queens, flying vehicles, golden palaces, multicoloured lights, frolicking animals and musical birds, flowing streams of milk and honey, etc. Then there is home in terms of geography: India - eternal Bharat ... the golden sparrow ... specifically, the capital Delhi or, to be more accurate, Indraprastha, the Court of Indra.

Even though heaven is heavily hyped for its wealth and gadgets, I suspect that for many - probably Westerners moreso - the main attraction is the thought of men, women, children (and even animals! living in sweet harmony. Never a fight. Never a fall. Never a bruise. Never angry words. Never “No tonight dear, I have a headache”.

And then ... the bubble bursts.

One Response to “The Need to Belong”
Paul Says: February 11th, 2007 at 4:48 pm

Yes, yes, yes, it is that longing to belong what ensnares many to the Brahma Kumaris. One gets seduced by their soft voices and peaceful manners. Once the bait is taken they pull the line of deception and a different reality begins to show. The bursting of the bubble, although it causes a lot of frustration and distress, is drama’s way to save us from slavery and imprisonment.

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