[Fredric Rice, The Skeptic Tank: The authorship of these files on
cults has his or her own motivations for providing them and will
contain his or her own bias. What I find typical is that
individuals and organizations which report on cults are usually
themselves a competition cult yet like to think of themselves as
"a religion, not a cult." In actual fact, _ALL_ religions are
cults by the primary, secondary, and terciary usage definition of
the term. Some of the information you find here is inaccurate and
contains urban legend -- take what you find with a grain of salt.
If you wish to acquire a copy of the Law Enforcement Guide on
Occult Crime, contact myself at firstname.lastname@example.org or at The Skeptic
Tank (818) 335-9601 and I'll forward the address and information
The most distinguishable of cults thanks to the obligatory shaved
head and pigtails of male members (though wigs are sometimes worn
during fund-raising). Members also wear a necklace with 108 beads,
each representing the 'Hare Krishna' mantra. The complete set must
be repeated 16 times a day, that is to say 1,728 'Hare Krishnas'.
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness was founded
in America by a Calcutta businessman called Prabhupada in 1966.
It achieved its height of fame in the 1970s when it was taken up
by hippies on both sides of the Atlantic. George Harrison sold
his Hertfordshire mansion to the movement at a knockdown price.
More recently the Krishnas have been having a bad time. Always
unpopular among liberals for their attitude towards women (who
Prabhupada described as 'prone to degradation, of little
intelligence and untrustworthy'), the Krishna movement also became
a victim of its own success. As vast amounts of money began pouring
into its American headquarters, stories started circulating about
fast cars, tax evasion, drug smuggling and even murder.In 1987,
Europe's leading Krishna, James Immel, was found beheaded in the
back of a London shop. The murderer was still at the scene of
the crime when the police arrived, holding the head and weeping.
He was one of Immel's closest disciples, but had become
disillusioned by stories of Immel's LSD-fuelled sex sessions.
American sociologists claim that the movement is also losing many
of its 'second generation' members. Many of these children are
now rejecting the harsh laws of a sect which demands extreme
abstinence, waking at 4am and cold showers. Krishnas believe
in reincarnation, karma and that chanting the mantra of Krishna
will hold off the evil pollution of a materialistic world. There
is also a heavy emphasis on raising money by door-to-door selling.
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