Despair and Deliverance: Private Salvation in Contemporary by Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi

By Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi

Publication via Beit-Hallahmi, Benjamin

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Such a disaster had been predicted for 1984 but was averted at the last moment because of the "positive energy" created by Emin members in their activities. A major concern expressed in Emin writings is that about becoming electrically polluted, and the means to avoid or rectify this pollution. "Part of self development concerns taking care not to allow oneself to coarsen or become electrically poisoned or polluted below the level of one's aim or attainment" (Armin, 1982, p. 74). Electrical stumps travelling through the astral light can attach themselves, in the way of a barnacle or limpet, to the human aura.

Such beliefs create a special way of looking at nonmembers and of interacting with them. The feeling of superiority and the supercilious attitude toward nonmembers, justified by the special secret knowledge open only to insiders, creates obvious resentment among outsiders. The prominence of pollution fears in the Emin belief system calls for an explanation. In individuals who are otherwise functioning, the acceptance of such paranoid psychotic ideas must serve a function. At the individual level, it is a projection of threat and insecurity, in a desperate attempt to defend the self.

Most major Israeli newspapers have carried not just major articles on cults, but also a series or two on cults in Israel. Ai Hamishmar carried an eight-part series in March 1982, and Davar had two major articles in December. Apparently, 1983 was a banner year for newspaper articles about cults. In addition to hundreds of articles about specific groups, there was an eight-part series in Haaretz, Israel's leading daily. , Frenkel, 1983). Beyond the Pale 41 The tenor of all newspaper articles was negative, and some of them were purely sensational.

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