Beware of Cults

Beware Of Cults
Joining or participating in a student group, political, or religious organization is a common and fun experience for many people. Many employers want to see that you were involved in a student club/group during your university experience.  In North America everyone has the freedom of personal expression and the right to enjoy relationships with others of similar interests. Becoming involved in and officially joining a group has many advantages:

  1. It offers comfort from feelings of isolation and loneliness.
  2. It gives you new ideas and a greater understanding of your world.
  3. It brings relationships that can last a lifetime.
  4. It often helps you adjust to cultural differences.
  5. It can bring help in job networking.
  6. It brings an opportunity to get help with the English language.
  7. It will help you develop your interpersonal skills.
  8. It gives you the chance to find out what others think and believe about life.

Sometimes however, there are groups or organizations that may be harmful to identify with or join. These groups have rights under Canadian and U.S. law to assemble but can cause mental, emotional and even physical injury. They are called CULTS.

It is important to thoroughly investigate any group or organization that you wish to become actively engaged with. Here are some guidelines we suggest you follow in order to determine if the group is good for you and not a cult:

Every group should openly answer any questions that you may have and should never put off answering your questions.

Check with your Student Government office and your campus International Student and Scholar Services office to make sure that the group is registered to function on campus. Seek their advice when you feel uncomfortable with the organization.

  1. Never tolerate any hazing! Almost all hazing is against the law.
  2. Never join a group if you feel pressured. Take your time to decide to join.
  3. Seek the advice of a person you respect who is not involved in the group.
  4. If you are a student, the group should encourage and promote your university studies.
  5. The group should promote your relationship with your family.
  6. The group should be positive, encouraging, and enhance your personal joy.

Always beware of a group that:

  • Requires you to give them money.
  • Asks to control your personal possessions and seek to be your power of attorney.
  • Demands total commitment to them rather than your school, family, etc.
  • Demands control of your time and how you think. They make you feel manipulated and abused.
  • Threatens you in ANY manner.
  • Demands that you act, dress, or believe just like they do.
  • Shows racism in any fashion.
  • Claims they can solve ALL your problems.