Originally posted by LightinDarkness
The world religions are by definition not a cult.
I would have to disagree. From a technical standpoint, all religions are by definition "cults". In popular usage, the term "cult" may require a
charasmatic leader, but the technical use of the term does not. The word is derived from the Latin "cultus", literally, "worship" or "honor".
cult /kʌlt/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[kuhlt] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun 1. a particular system of religious worship, esp. with reference to its rites and ceremonies.
2. an instance of great veneration of a person, ideal, or thing, esp. as manifested by a body of admirers: the physical fitness cult.
3. the object of such devotion.
4. a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc.
5. Sociology. a group having a sacred ideology and a set of rites centering around their sacred symbols.
6. a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction
of a charismatic leader.
7. the members of such a religion or sect.
8. any system for treating human sickness that originated by a person usually claiming to have sole insight into the nature of disease, and that
employs methods regarded as unorthodox or unscientific.
–adjective 9. of or pertaining to a cult.
10. of, for, or attracting a small group of devotees: a cult movie.
[edit on 10-12-2007 by Masonic Light]