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The word cult is defined as an alternative religion. Most cults are started because someone doesn’t like the way the world is, and feels that his/her church isn’t doing anything to make it better, so they leave and create what they believe to be the perfect religion. Then this person strives to make others believe as they do so they will join (Miller, 1991, p. 15). There are somewhere around 3,000 to 5,000 of these cults throughout the United States, but only 75 to 100 are documented (Miller, 1991, p. 15-16). Satanism is the oldest form of such cults. A few other commonly known cults are Reverend Jim Jones and the People Temple, Heavens Gate, and Charles Manson and the Family. In the early 20th century, Allistar Crowly, AKA “The Black Pope”, started modern Satanism. It is said that Anton Lavey brought Satanism to the United States. Anton believed that he was the reincarnation of the “Black Pope”. He set his church up in San Francisco in 1966. Within one year Anton’s cult grew to more than 200,000 members (Miller, 1991, p. 28-29). Anton then went to Hollywood to help make movies about Satanism. He succeeded in doing so and was involved with the making of many movies including Rosmary’s Baby (Miller, 1991, p. 29). During this time Lavey and his assistant Michael Aquins wrote The Satanic Bible, which instantly became a best seller. The Satanic Bible told of the main concepts of Satanism. Basically, it is the reverse of Christianity. The main idea projected is “Do what thou will” (Miller, 1991, p. 31). One of the peculiar rituals of Satanist is the sacrifice of a newborn child. They believe that the newborn has a special power, and if they sacrifice the baby immediately after birth, that its power will go into the coven (Miller 1991, p. 33). Reverend Jim Jones was the leader of The Peoples Temple. Jim thought of himself as the reincarnation of Jesus and Lenin. His vision of world domination was nuclear war, and the only cities that would survive are Ukiah, California and Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Because of this belief, he moved his cult to Ukiah and awaited the war (Cults R Us, 2000, September 27, p. 1). After awhile he grew tired of waiting for what he claimed would be “WW 3”, so he relocated his church to San Francisco. There he practiced a ritual know as “White Nights”. In this ritual members prepare... ... middle of paper ... where to go first. Manson’s first victim was Terry Melcher. Several members of “The Family” went to his house and killed him. When they were finished they wrote “POLITICAL PIGGY” on a wall to make it look like the Black Panthers had committed the murder. The next victim was Cielo Drive. Once again several members of “The Family” went to her house and killed her. They killed five other people. One of the members wanted to cut a baby from the stomach of a pregnant woman they had killed and take it to Charles. She also thought about cutting out the baby’s heart and eating it (Cults R Us, 2000, p. 1). Manson’s antics were put to an end one day while “The Family” was out in the desert riding dun buggies where marshals arrested Charles and other members of the Cult (Cults R Us, 2000, p. 1). Statistics have shown that most Satanist lack self-confidence. They enter the religion because of the false sense of power and security it offers. Although Bibliography 1. Cults R Us (2000, September 27) [online] Available: 2. Miller, M (1990). Coping With Cults. Rosen Publishing Group, INC. New York.

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