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邪教,如影随行(中英对照)
作者:Leonard Stern 石言 李芬(编译) · 2008-05-23 来源:凯风网

  编者按:加拿大《渥太华公民报》5月17日发表署名文章《邪教,如影随行》,对邪教的特点进行分析阐述,并再次把法轮功与西方公认邪教组织——科学教派相提并论,同时在文章末尾呼吁人们不要加入“任何一个试图掩饰其真实意图的运动”。文中关于宗教问题的若干论述只代表作者观点,不代表本网立场。

 

  【加拿大《渥太华公民报》2008年5月17日,作者:Leonard Stern】一个被许多人认定为邪教的团体正欲渗透进一起社区活动中。当活动的组织者搞清楚他们是怎么回事后,便明确要求该邪教团体收摊子走人。不过,令组织者感到颇为苦恼的是,这个邪教团体为了蒙蔽不知情的读者而刻意对自己进行了虚假的伪装。

 
  不,这里讲的可不是法轮功与加拿大郁金香节之间的争论。这个事件发生在西雅图弗里蒙特市场(Fremont Market)。美国记者丹·萨维奇(Dan Savage)说,在这个颇受欢迎的市场门口,购物的人们惊讶地发现了一个科学教派设立的摊位。一位市场发言人解释说,科学教派是以普通“书商”的身份争取到这个摊位的。
 
  可以肯定,这件事与法轮功在渥太华闹腾得沸沸扬扬的事件如出一辙。中国政府认定法轮功为邪教,因此法轮功一直进行反对中国的抗议活动。在郁金香节的开幕式上,原计划有一个法轮功所属的行进乐队进行表演,然而,在最后一分钟时,活动组委会取消了这项表演。活动组织者说,原来没有人告知他们这个行进乐队是属于法轮功的。当他们发现真相后,担心这个乐队会使节日庆祝变成一项政治抗议活动,因此,做出了上述决定。
 
  相信一定有许多人赞同法轮功是个“怪异邪教”的观点,所以在一些地方,法轮功鲜有同情者。正像排斥科学教派一样,弗里蒙特市场也会很乐意把他们轰将出去。
 
  不过,我们还是应该小心使用“邪教”这个词,因为没有任何一个“宗教”觉着自己呆傻或稀奇古怪。在影片《波拉特》(Borat)中,萨沙·伯龙·科恩(Sacha Baron Cohen)进入一个五旬节教堂,用另一种语言取笑信徒。《波拉特》的影迷喜欢嘲笑怪异的基督徒。科恩先生也是个犹太人,在一个传统的犹太教堂内,他用摄像机记录了教徒们在祈祷时前仰后合、摇头晃脑的样子。从德克萨斯州的埃尔帕索(El Paso)到加拿大萨斯卡通的电影院中,你可以听到许多人都在对此窃笑。
 
  尽管确实有伊斯兰极端分子的威胁,但是不止一位记录片制作人大着胆子展示了穆斯林祈祷时喜怒无常的影像,这些画面本身就足以让人有一种不详的预兆。对非穆斯林信徒来说,看到成千上万的麦加朝圣者个个前额嗑向地面的画面,可能会觉着有些毛骨悚然和不解,甚至会觉着这些人中邪了。不过,你再把一位穆斯林教徒请去见识一下佛教仪式,看看到时谁说谁更像邪教分子。
 
  一般说来,邪教通常具有的标志性特征包括新招募成员要经历人格的改变,并且与他们曾经成长的社区集体越来越疏远。不过当某个人转而信奉一个新的教派时,这种现象也经常会出现。在狱中那些开始信奉耶稣的罪犯,给人最突出的感觉就是其个性的改变,这种性格变化能够使他们彻底远离他们曾经成群结伙的团体(比如说街头混混),但是以此认定这些人就是邪教而把他们排斥在基督徒外,似乎不太公平。
 
  邪教还被指责用恐惧和赎罪心理来控制信徒,我知道罗马天主教往往熟谙此道。詹姆斯·乔伊斯的《青年艺术家画像》一书中,一个守旧的爱尔兰神父发表来自地狱的布道,这比你从汤姆·克鲁斯或者其他科学教派神学家那儿所听到的任何东西都要可怕。
 
  对纯粹的期待,魅力型领袖的威临,心无旁骛,以及“我们对付他们”的世界观,所有这些定义邪教的框框对于许多有名望的宗教来说也同样是主要的表现。正如一些学者们所争论的那样,甚至用“酗酒”、“无名氏”都可以对一个邪教组织去定义。
 
  然而,在已确定的宗教和所谓的邪教之间,有些特点相互交叉,其中最显著的是,相比宗教,邪教使用欺骗手段更加普遍。我不相信法轮功一定是危险的或者是个邪教,但它的成员却有不如实讲述其身份的历史。几个月前,我在Westboro遇到一位正分发一场中国文化表演门票的男子,他坚持说“要带着孩子来看。”但当我与他交谈五分钟以后,某些事情渐渐凸显,我问这个晚会是否就是法轮功的晚会?这时他的友善的表情销声匿迹了。
 
  西雅图记者丹·萨维奇指出虽然科学教派并非为基督教,但他们越来越频繁的使用一个十字架符号。挪用符号就是一种欺骗形式。
 
  弥赛亚基督教派将进入大学,向天真的犹太学生分发配以类似烛台一样标识的招募文书,努力引诱他们。这些学生还以为他们被邀请参加一个“犹太人”的活动。
 
  这件事本身可能无法确定一个组织就是邪教,但是我建议,对任何一个试图掩饰其真实意图的运动都不要加入。(译者注:文中关于宗教问题的若干论述只代表作者观点。)(完)
 
  原文网址:http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=1aeeb770-14d7-4e76-8af5-7198c6a680a6

Cult followings

The Ottawa Citizen By: Leonard Stern

A group that many consider a religious cult infiltrates a community event. Event organizers figure out what's going on and tell the group to beat it. What most irked the organizers was that the alleged cult misrepresented itself in order to gain access to an unsuspecting audience.

No, this is not about the dispute between the Falun Gong and the Canadian Tulip Festival. It's about an incident at Seattle's Fremont Market. As the U.S. journalist Dan Savage tells it, shoppers at the popular outdoor market were surprised to discover a booth sponsored by the Church of Scientology. The Scientologists obtained the booth under the pretense of being ordinary 'booksellers', according to a market spokesman.

To be sure, there are echoes here of the Falun Gong dust-up in Ottawa. The Chinese government says Falun Gong is a cult, which is why Falun Gong hold anti-China protests. A Falun Gong marching band was set to perform at the opening ceremony of the Tulip Festival when, at the last minute, the festival cancelled the appearance. The tulip organizers said they weren't told the band was Falun Gong, and when they found out they feared the band would turn the festival into a political protest.

The festival has since apologized to the band. But if there wasn't a whole lot of sympathy for the Falun Gong in some quarters, it's because many people likely shared the view that it's a weird cult. Same with scientologists, to whom the Fremont Market was only too happy to give the boot.

We should be careful about the word cult, though. Any religion other than one's own looks bizarre and silly. In the movie Borat, Sacha Baron Cohen goes into a Pentecostal church and makes fun of worshippers for speaking in tongues. Borat fans loved laughing at the freaky Christians. Mr. Cohen, meanwhile, is Jewish. Take a video camera into an Orthodox synagogue and film the men rocking back and forth in their ecstatic prayer, and you'll get plenty of snickers in movie theatres from El Paso to Saskatoon.

The threat of militant Islam is real, but more than one documentary filmmaker has overreached by showing moody video of Muslims at prayer, as though such footage itself is sufficient to suggest foreboding. To non-Muslims, images from Mecca of thousands of men pressing their foreheads to the floor are creepy and foreign, perhaps even cultish. But invite a Muslim to witness a Buddhist ceremony and see who's calling whom a cult member.

A defining mark of cults, supposedly, is that new recruits experience a personality change and become alienated from the communities they grew up in. But this is often the case whenever someone converts to a new religion. Criminals who find Jesus in prison experience the most radical of personality change, which profoundly alienates them from the communities to which they once belonged (street gangs, say). Seems unfair to write off born again Christians as cult followers.

Cults are accused of using fear and guilt to secure obedience. That pretty much takes care of all the Roman Catholics I know. The sermon on hell in James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, delivered by an old school Irish priest, is scarier than anything you'll hear from Tom Cruise or other Scientologist theologian.

Expectations of purity, the presence of charismatic leaders, a sense of exclusivity or chosenness, an "us vs. them" world view -- all these criteria assigned to cults are also central to many respectable religions. As some scholars have argued, even Alcoholics Anonymous can be made to fit definitions of a cult organization.

Yet for all the overlap between established religions and alleged cults, there is one trait that appears to be more common among the latter than the former: the use of deception. I don't believe Falun Gong is either dangerous or a cult, but its members do have a history of misrepresenting themselves. A few months ago I was approached in Westboro by a man giving away tickets to a Chinese cultural performance. Bring the kids, he insisted. After chatting for five minutes something clicked and I asked if the show was Falun Gong; it was, and his friendly manner vanished.

The Seattle journalist Dan Savage has noted that the Church of Scientology is increasingly using the cross as a symbol, even though the group is in no way Christian. Appropriating symbols is a form of deception.

Messianic Christian sects will go onto university campuses and distribute recruitment literature with symbols like the menorah, in an effort to lure naive Jewish students who think they have been invited to a "Jewish" event.

This may itself not make a group a cult, but any movement that feels it has to disguise its real agenda is not one that I'd recommend joining.

E-mail: lstern@thecitizen.canwest.com

(The Ottawa Citizen, Saturday, May 17, 2008)

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