#cults sociological vs psychological definitions

11.22: web.relig/cults/sociological vs psychological definitions:
. the definition of a cult has been muddled by
attempts to prevent christianity from
falling under the definition of cult .
. the most popular forms of christianity
use authoritarianism to build solidarity
rather than cultivate a rational approach
to the interpretation of the scriptures .
. even if a cult can't be a mainstream religion
how do we know that today's christianity
will always be mainstream?
. "cult" was originally used to describe
the act of worship or religious ceremony.
. from Latin cultus (worship),
from the adjective cultus
(inhabited, cultivated, worshiped),
derived from the verb colere (care, cultivate).
. In sociological classifications,
a cult is a religious or other social group
with socially deviant and novel beliefs or practices.
. sociology is the study of a culture
at a given point in time;
so when sociology defines a cult as deviant
they are talking about deviance relative to
the day's dominant culture .
. psychology would be more objective
concerned with a culture's effect on the psyche;
so, how would psychology define a cult?
. what is most important to a well-exercised psyche
is rationalism over authoritarianism
to promote inquiry over conformity .