Out of Life’s Quagmires

My blogging friend wrote a piece about cults that I think is important to know. She commented on “My Obituary for Pierre Maltais”, “It is so easy to slip into a cult-like group (now, they are called “high-demand groups”), with the right leader characteristics (usually sociopathic) and people’s needs for belonging and acceptance, it’s a perfect recipe for disaster. Having been part of a Virginia group like this for a number of years (until I got kicked out for challenging the leader), I wrote a manuscript about what happens in a cultish group and how the followers elevate the leader over time into a god-like position.

The Beauty Along the Road

Lotus pond Lotus pond

This 4th-of-July weekend (Independence Day in the US), I managed to combine learning more about the traumatic impact of cults and the (almost) unbearable beauty of lotus flowers.

A perfect lotus flower A perfect lotus flower

What does one have to do with the other, you might ask.

At a very concrete level, the location of the cultic studies conference and the location of the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens were both in the Washington, DC Metro Area.

Cathy of Nomad, Interrupted posted beautiful pictures of her visit to these Aquatic Gardens which I had last visited about 15 years ago. Thanks for the inspiration, Cathy!

At first, I only thought of the Aquartic Gardens as a photo opportunity but now I realize there was a much deeper connection.

Just as the lotus flower grows out of mucky swamp waters, I needed release from diving deep into the human quagmire of cults, common personality…

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