Everyone is looking for a tribe; for a community, a group of people who will understand you and nourish you. So when we are on that search we sometimes make a few wrong turns that lead us to groups we have to escape and run screaming from. Groups of fanatics (Cults) are dangerous and more often then not people find themselves accidentally involved.
Redditor u/relatee asked people who were caught up in some drama an important life question.... Former cult members of Reddit, at what moment did you go, "oh f**k, I'm in a cult"?
I'm a Material Girl!Giphy
One of the leaders said that we shouldn't watch any TV or read any material that wasn't published by the church.
I said, "well I just like road and track magazine, I don't think that's anti religious." He replied, "that material will cause you to lust after material things and you shouldn't read that."
It was at that point I knew I had to get the hell out of there. GasLOLHAHA
When the high lama snapped a crying toddler on the side of the head to get him to shut up, then demanded that children be kept out of earshot, a thousand yards away. Great compassion my butt.
(Not to mention he got drunk every night while he taught. Not to mention he said Westerners lacked the discernment to judge and choose their own teachers.) tyinsf
Let's be friends....Giphy
Was accidentally in a religious cult. I would see how the pastor would treat non members and members that didn't comply with what he wanted and I would think "I hope he doesn't start acting this way towards me" he would berate people, gossip, expect us to stay at his house until late hours, forbid us to hang out with non members, and he even asked me to move in there when I already had my own place.
I noticed it was a cult when I told them I was hanging out with an old friend and they preceded to ask why was I doing that and that they were my friends.
I came to a service that following Sunday and the pastor sees me and says "I had a message I was going to preach, but I'm going to preach a different message today."
The whole service was pretty much him talking stuff about me and making rude jokes. I knew this sermon was about me when he kept referencing the "person" hanging out with other people and saying it was sinful and of the world. I never felt so embarrassed in my life with everyone laughing at me. I sat that entire service just embarrassed.
Once I left, several of the members attempted to contact me with a few of them trying to "go to the movies" with me at midnight when they knew damn well the closest movie theatre was an hour away and what movie theatre shows movies at midnight.
After I stopped going to that church a few of the members completely stopped talking to me despite us being "friends" still can't believe that happened to me. Tito_Santana
Watching my Grandma, who is the matriarch of my extended family and our family's glue, struggle to pay tithes AND offerings every week, regardless of how much of a difference it would have made to her vs our rather large church. My Grandma paid for her meds in change on a Monday and while I watched our preacher get into a brand new, black and chrome Yukon Denali the Sunday prior and it didn't make sense. tchallathe2nd
Leah Remini for the win...
A couple of things....
When I found out about the Australia Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Specifically case studies 29 and 54. Watching a governing body member (1 of 8 leaders of Jehovah's Witnesses), Geoffrey Jackson, lie, reword questions, avoid direct answers and get thoroughly beaten by a lawyer on Biblical interpretation I was like, "oh crap." I started my escape and doctrinal research.
The "oh damn!" and bawling, lots of bawling as a mid 30s man, came after watching episodes 5 and 6 of season 1 of Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath. The first 4 episodes I saw similarities. Episodes 5 and 6 I saw things that I had had happen in my life. Getting ad hominem attacks from my mother, sister and brother-in-law, which from watching the show I expected would come, gave further proof of Jehovah's Witnesses being a doomsday cult.
Research whatever it is that you are in. Especially if born in to a religious belief system. wyofan87
I was actually in a church that transformed slowly into a cult. They just slowly started doing more and more miracle things and being open more and more days open with encouragement to be there for those days. Tithes became incredible important and the priest family became more and more important.
I left but I heard some insane things happened after I left. I was lucky as I came from a really complicated low socioeconomic background when I moved for uni there wasn't much fight for me. KettleLogic
Had an accident when I was twelve that injured my back. Sitting hurt. I convinced my mother to allow me to walk around during the multi-hour long services in the library/overflow room downstairs that had a speaker blaring whatever was going on at the pulpit. In that library was all the original cult publications from eighty plus years previous. No one ever paid any attention to them but I was a voracious reader. They were into some wackadoo crap at the beginning that totally contradicted the current teachings. (pyramid power, numerology...) I never said anything because it was a closed society and questioning meant total shunning but from that point on I was aware that it was all garbage and I spent most of my time planning my escape.
When I finally publicly called bull six years later I lost everyone and everything. Life sucked for a while but 10/10 would do it again.
Don't answer the door when Jehovah's Witnesses come knocking especially if you have children! They're hiding tens of thousands of pedophiles in their ranks! Fn weirdo doomsday fools. loudmouthedmonkey
I used to practice kung fu at what was basically the most McDojo place ever. On top of all the usual money grabbing bull! The grand master changed his title to something like His Celestial Holiness and started getting his students to travel to the woods to build his temple.
Heaven's gate cult in the late 90's targeted me because I was obsessed with Star Trek. My best friend growing up, her family was part of it. I spent almost two years with them Before I was brought to a meeting. It was scary as hell. They all killed themselves a few years after. No one believed me for 16 years. That part messed with me the most. mtheorye
When I was told i couldn't ask questions. I was 14.
All that did was make me ask more questions.
I ended up at the public library reading up about cults. (This was in the 90's). o2bjody
The Sacred Lamb...
When I was told that proceeding in a ceremony and receiving a gift that was a religious rite of passage to adulthood would require me to take upon myself certain sacred obligations, and that I could not know them beforehand. I could either leave then in front of my family or essentially sign a blank check to swear any oath required of me later on.AhhhGreat
Too Much Gospel!Giphy
When the church spent more time talking about how we should bring people out to church than they actually talked about the gospel, I decided it was time to go. thudly
Yep! Joined a "youth group" that turned out to be a Jesus cult in high school. I should've noticed how important recruiting was to them (considering the kids who recruited me were very proud of their accomplishment), but one of the first tip offs that something was awry was when they covered a wall in paper with a red brick pattern and we were encouraged to write the names of our friends from school who needed to be "saved" on the wall so everyone could pray for them and reach out to them about coming to youth group.
When I quit they showed up at my house to try to convince me to come back. They had over 100 members from my high school alone (and I think around 400 in general). Cat_Island
For me it was when, after almost a decade of being raised in and working for them, i got fired by them. The reason being I had watched a Chris Rock video, and this was reported by one Cult Leaders many spies he apparently had in each department (found this out after a lot of digging once i had become disillusioned). He decided it was proof that i was not pure in Christ and had to be removed from the "flock of christ."
The idea that something so innocent as a comedy youtube, could be a "grievous sin against God" as he put; struck me as beyond ludicrous and awakened a very cynical part of me. And so the journey of searching for truth began.wittyusernamefailed
No hitting the streets!
I was part of a "cult" church when I was invited soon after I started attending school at UF. Since I was looking for a church to attend, this worked out great
I was invited by a real nice guy and started attending every service, getting to know everyone and making great friends. The services seemed to be a bit extreme, a little too "fire and brimstone" but I decided to ignore that and focus on what I agree with.
I started getting a little uncomfortably when they tried to make me recruit people on the street, but I really felt uneasy when they said I shouldn't hang out with my friends that followed other religions and even family members, because they're not "good influences."
Despite all of this I kept going mainly because of the people there. It wasn't until my sociology class did a unit on cults and how they work, being nice and friendly and then trying to separate people from their friends and family so they won't be persuaded to leave.
After that I decided to stop attending services, although I stayed in touch with some people. It's a real shame because most of them are born again Christians and don't know that a real church isn't like that. They're great people, just lead by the wrong person. RageAndWar
Not the KKK!!!!Giphy
Obligatory not me but my friend's grandfather was a farmer growing up, think 1940s or 50s. It was kind of a remote town, but he would talk to other farmers and buyers when he went down to the market. One day, an acquaintance of his tells him that they're having a meeting with whole bunch of other farmers and farmhands and that he should come and join. My friend's grandfather, thinking it's some sort of farmer's alliance, is like "sure, why not."
Friend's grandpa goes to the meeting and is a bit confused when it's not about farming at all. It's a KKK meeting. He has an "oh crap, I'm in a cult," moment, but waits till it's over because he doesn't know what will happen if someone sees him trying to leave. Meeting ends. He goes home. Dude tries to invite him again and friend's grandpa nopes out of there. Cometstarlight
Can't handle competition?
"remember not to browse apostate websites in case they weaken your faith."
Shouldn't truth stand up under scrutiny?
Show them the $$$!
My parents were in this religious cult that always ask for crazy amount of donation. It even send families out to pioneer for the religion. We were one of the family.
Then coming to Canada and we had financial/immigration issue. The organization immediately distanced us. Only then did we realize this was not what we thought it was. The way they motivated people was like any cult I have heard of.willchen319
Get thee back Satan!Giphy
When I realized I was afraid of doing outside research on the religion (cult) I was raised in. I was afraid I'd be allowing Satan to control my mind. Once I did research it I realized that for so many years I thought I was thinking for myself but I was really just being controlled and told what to think and do. And then it further intensified the realization I was in a cult when my whole family turned their back on me and started shunning me because I stopped believing in their nonsense. Koaliawa
Our Greatest Callings....
When I realized ever since I was a kid I had been railroaded towards getting married and having more kids in the organization. Every thing I was every taught was how to be a good wife with sewing and quiet journaling and crafts with no encouragement for my dreams of being a scientist.
Once when I was ~14 I said to a leader that I didn't want kids and wanted to be a scientist, and I remember the exact words: "Well, when you decide you do want to have kids remember that that's the greatest calling you can have." When I got older I did some research and compared it to the "approved resources" I found a lot of lies and cover ups they taught and found the truth disgusting. Nightthunder
When I wasn't good enough. It wasn't enough that I showed up, paid money and contributed to the group—there was always this hint of disappointment that I couldn't bring in more people, through subtle hints like, "You can bring other people if you'd like! We'd love to be able to save your loved ones," to, "Why don't you ever bring people in? Your loved ones deserve to be saved!" And people who were social and outgoing were described as the most desirable people to invite into the church. My pastor straight out said, "We aren't going for the loners you see sitting alone at lunch. We need to go for the social kids with groups of friends all around them. It's our goal to save as many people as possible so we need to go for them!" Decadent_Grool
That is all crazy scary. Have any of you had any run-ins with cults?
A good chunk of humanity have a hard time hearing certain truths. We don't want to admit what isn't working, because it's just human nature to be scared of being wrong. It's hard to admit weakness individually, much less as a whole.
But eventually, we need to face the facts, and these Redditors are ready to deliver the harsh truths about what it means to be human. SomeWillingness2960 asked:
What is the truth humanity is not ready to hear?
Let’s start with a few of the light ones, before we dive deep in what we’ve been overdue to hear.
Starting off with a very controversial one.
“The air in chip bags is important.”
“They replace the air (which contains oxygen and water vapour) with nitrogen so the chips don't get soggy or oxidise.”
“And they "over inflate" the bags on purpose to cushion the chips from crumbling during packing / transport.”
A universal work struggle.season 8 episode 23 GIFGiphy
“No matter where you work, or what you do for a living, there will always be That Person that nobody can figure out how they got hired, never mind why they are allowed to continue working there.”
- You actually show up on time
- Your work is
good/up to standardis not the worst and passable
- Your colleagues and bosses
like youdon't hate you the most out of your colleagues
Edit. Adding 4 and 5 based on below discussions which can supercede the above 3 while also ammending the above three slightly
4. It's more difficult to kick you out than to keep you
5. You have some control over those in charge (some kind of relation, having some kind of incriminating evidence, etc)”
What is “normal”, anyway?
“We will never have a good sense of the world's "normal."
News won't focus on it, because it's boring by definition. Social media won't focus on it for the same reason. Word of mouth and fiction too. Statistics may get us close, but they're hard to picture in terms if human experience, and of course, more exciting stats get repeated more.
Our view of the world outside of our own personal experience will always be shaped by the outliers, and there's not much way around it.”
Ok, now it’s time to dive deeper. Prepare yourselves.
This one hurts.
“Most people simply don't care about the things you're passionate about no matter how much you try to convince them that they should be.”
“As I've gotten older I've had to learn that my friends don't find joy in the same things I do. It's nothing personal.”
I’ll never understand this.Mermaid Man And Barnacle Boy Superhero GIF by SpongeBob SquarePantsGiphy
“Much evil not only goes unpunished but is rewarded.”
“Not only that but a lot of evil behaviour is rewarding itself for many people.”
“The loudest among you are mostly a bunch of wankers. Unfortunately you usually let them lead you.”
“A big part of that is because they tell us what we want to hear.
You ever hear a politician go "We're going to have open borders, lower corporate tax rate, higher sales tax, reduced prison sentences, laws forbidding employers from looking into if they're hiring a criminal, a ban on beef, and we're doing it all because that is what the experts say we should do and I have a giant book of sources on that"? No, because even though that's very much what experts advise, it's not at all what people want to hear.
So instead, when you hear someone going "Don't listen to that guy, what we really need is better border control, huge taxes on corporations, no taxes on the poor, criminals get treated like the scum they are, and corporations are the main ones behind climate change, and don't ask me for sources", you're still much more likely to support him. Because when you want to believe them, they're so much easier to believe.”
Those would be some very smart monkeys.
“There's a good chance that humans simply don't have the capacity to fully understand the universe.
A monkey will never be able to comprehend calculus, macroeconomic theory, or how a car works. It makes sense that we too have an intellectual ceiling that will prevent us from ever understanding how the universe works.”
Ready to face the music? Keep reading.
“Humanity is the largest threat to itself. Not some natural disaster or outside invasion. We will kill ourselves off at this rate.”
“Yes. It's sad that the most successful and intelligent species in the solar system is most likely going to cause its own downfall.”
“For most people the last thing left of them will be an eroded name on a headstone.”
“I want to be one of those taxidermied drones.”
Username checks out.
“Are you special? Maybe a little bit. Are you as special as you think you are? Certainly not.”
“We are all the same decaying organic matter.”
Well, I hope y’all aren’t too messed up from reading that. Especially that first one about the chip bags. How dare they.
But in all seriousness, just do your part to make our world a better place. That’s all we can do.
An overwhelming majority of us have plenty of things we are annoyed by every single day, and also lack the power to doing anything about them.
That unfortunate, infuriating state is just the norm. We walk through life seeing, hearing, and enduring daily pitfalls whose existences make zero sense to us.
But if we did have the power to outlaw just one of those annoyances, how hard of a choice would that be?
Apparently for some Redditors, the choice was clear. They were happy to share their selection.
Redditor jinxy_wolfy asked:
"What would you ban?"
Many people have absolutely had it with the annoying aspects of using the internet every day.
"That damn fake 'x' button to close out mobile game adds" -- WebbedRose103
"Or when it's a real x button, but they make it so small that you click the ad anyway." -- tomuglycruise
"That and the moving button that makes you click on ads as it loads more and more ads." -- Maester_erryk
Others spoke specifically about the world of advertising and constantly encountering people trying to sell something. The lengths they'll go are endless.
"You're no longer allowed to advertise a lower price than what the customer will pay. No more $29.99... plus $100 in fees."
"Calling someone you don't know to solicit. I get 12+ calls a day and block each one and still get 12 more the next day. I'll hang up on them because they're calling while I'm using GPS and they'll just immediately call and interrupt the map again."
Glue and Plastic
"selling food that looks significantly different in person than it does in advertising/food glamour shots." -- skepticones
"This is why I like eating out in Japan. There are plastic examples of dishes in the front window. If something looks good, you go in and ask for it, and it matches the one in the window every time!" -- EmEmPeriwinkle
And others set their sights on the toxic elements of human culture that seem to make everyone worse off.
All About Context
"Too many loopholes in current law. For instance Dr. Oz would lose his medical license if he told a patient in his office the same things he says on TV. But broadcasts aren't technically doctor-patient relationships, so he gets away with misleading millions of people."
"Puppy mills" -- godhasmoreaids
"Backyard breeders too imo. I see a lot of poorly bred dogs who have major issues because a family wants a payday." -- EmEmPeriwenkle
Poor All Other Animals
"MarineLand and all zoos that mistreat their animals."
Genuine nature preserves that respect and care for their animals, with lots and lots of room, hey, more power to you. But establishments that keep animals as exhibits in tiny spaces have to be stopped."
"Child beauty pageants, just fu** off with that sh**" -- Russian_Terminator
"Yes. It is disgusting to see little girls caked with makeup parading around in adult clothing.Gross." -- glenarbourgal
Of course, none of us will get the chance to ban any of these things. But we can dream, can't we?
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From our childhood through our adult years, one thing we all dream of from time to time is all the things we could do if we had unlimited resources. Buy a castle and become your own anti-hero, solve world hunger, adopt ALL the animals, live on an endless cruise around the world, heck, buy a whole political party *cough cough*.
Most of us would be content making sure our family and friends were set for life and bettering the world the best we can.
Redditor ApArAmY wanted to hear what everyone else dreamed of doing if they had no limit on funds.
“What is the first thing you would buy if you had infinite money?"
Dreaming of affordable health care? Must be from the US...
“Every single medical provider facility in the world. Make healthcare free for patients. Since I have unlimited money, I can afford whatever drug/device/material/salary/etc that would treat patients.”
“Then everyone can get on with living life knowing that they'll get good medicine and not be saddled with high costs. And taxes could go down because governments wouldn't have to pay for healthcare.” Specialist-Ad475
20 trillion, no big deal...
“I'd fund all efforts to further the fight against climate change, global warming, pollution, etc. I'd probably try not to spend that much money for a while so as to prevent inflation, but adding ~20 trillion dollars to the global economy wouldn't be that bad, right?” PixelGMS
The orange one wouldn't like this idea...
“I'd buy Mar a Lago, make it into a homeless shelter and install wind power turbines on all 18 holes." Mr-Warmth
Someone come get their dad!
“A new butt, my old one has a crack in it!" drewdwagy1966seth meyers dabbing GIF by Late Night with Seth MeyersGiphy
Human rights and green energy...
“Buy Amazon, Nestle, and as many $1billion+ corporations as I can. Once I'm CEO, I would stop every human rights violation they cause and give all the profits (since i have infinite money I won't need it) to charities and funding to green energy and stopping climate change." crispier_cream
“It sounds silly, but an ice cream sandwich. Several years ago, I was living paycheck to paycheck and had a fair amount of credit card debt. I fell behind in my mortgage and lost my home to foreclosure. Shortly after I was notified, I drove over to a 7-11, bought an ice cream sandwich, and ate it while crying in my car.”
“Unfortunately, every time I eat an ice cream sandwich, it's still a bittersweet feeling. I always think of the day my favorite childhood comfort food became forever intertwined with my sense of complete and utter failure. After coming into life-changing money, I would hope that an ice cream sandwich would taste as good again as it did when I was a kid.” Steve-in-rewrite
“Just….. a huge chunk of land.”
“Land. Just….. a huge chunk of land. Build a house for my parents, one for us, and one for my In-Laws, and another small house for the family to stay at when they come to visit. Maybe two. We got a big family. And then just spend my time building my farm." Unusual_Amphibian_20
Just make sure to funnel it through a PAC first...
“A US Senator! Or several of 'em. I've always wanted my own senator.” a_dangerous_noodleSusan Collins Thank You GIF by Election 2020Giphy
The who’s got a bigger one game...
“Judging by the world we live in, apparently I'd enter into the private space race.” Cool-breeze7
Back to the bartering system perhaps?
“I would distribute it all evenly so that it's literally worthless. I would expect this to collapse the economy but what do i know, I'm not an economist.” Jham_jam
It seems like mostly these Redditors want to help others and the planet. Although for that one person, may all your ice cream sandwiches be delightful.
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I admit that I am not a picky eater by any stretch of the imagination. I eat just about anything. I also consider myself pretty adventurous; when I travel, eating good food and trying the local cuisine is at the top of my list!
But even I would be hard-pressed to eat durian or even balut.
Would I say absolutely not? I'll have to get back to you after a trip to Southeast Asia. The jury's out for now.
People had very strong opinions on the food they want nothing to do with after Redditor KentuckyFriedEel asked the online community,
"What dish/food can f*** right off?"
"The edible KFC nail polish. Imagine you are spending the day touching public door handles and keyboards and stuff and then sucking your fingers for chicken paint."
This... this exists?
I'm so happy I've never actually run into this. I was doing just fine without this knowledge.
"Canned whole chickens. Not sure if anyone's seen those, but I want to vomit right now just thinking about it."
I can only think about how slimy it must be from all that congealed fat and it grosses me out.
"Pufferfish. I mean, you need like 2 to 3 years of training to serve it and if you accidentally eat the wrong part it will kill you. The poison has no known antidote and 1 needle can kill 30 adult humans. Other than that, it's just a fish. There are thousands of fish all over the world, just eat a different one"
Yeah... I love seafood but I'll pass. I don't want to be that person. I'm good, thanks!
"For those who aren't familiar..."
"Gefilte fish. For those who aren't familiar, it's like a ball of fish guts packaged in a jar. It's a common food eaten during Pesach."
"Shark fin soup. No taste, no nutritional value. Only to be had to show wealth/status in certain countries. Most importantly, it's really f***** up the shark populations."
Environmentalists have done some splendid work getting people to stop eating this––and imitation shark fin soup seems to be more available than the real thing.
God created the heavens and the earth, and everything in his creation.
He allowed Satan to create one thing... one at all, and Satan created the durian."
"Natto/fermented soybeans. It's sticky and disgusting. It's like Death and Hell had a sticky baby."
"I'm sick of people..."
"Celery. Useless vegetable, no nutritional value at all and just tastes disgusting. I'm sick of people ruining perfectly good egg/potato salads and soups with freaking celery. It's just unnecessary."
Celery's only crime is how inoffensive it actually is. Does it deserve this hate? Probably not.
"Liver. I mean... it's a filter. Why would anyone want to eat a filter?"
You can pry my liver out of my cold, dead hands. I'll have yours if you don't want it!
"I thought I hated..."
"Canned Spinach. I thought I hated spinach for half my life. Nope, I love it, just not that snot in a can. Why did you feed me that mother? Why?"
Okay, what I've learned today is... I could have done without the thought of canned whole chicken. My stomach wants to reject it and it's not even in my stomach. That should tell you something.
Have some opinions of your own? Feel free to tell us all about them in the comments below!
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