Anyone Else Raised in a Kooky Religion?

Thanks for answering that. One follow-up, then…did you start being able to get regular medical care after that or did you not see a doctor/get meds again until you left the church on your own?

That mainly depended on the person or family that was practicing Christian Science. The dentistry debacle was particularly interesting – there were some kids at my high school who wore braces, and others who just walked through the halls with terrible teeth. Everyone with bad eyesight wore corrective lenses, and don’t ask me to explain the logic behind that, because I can’t. As for casts and stitches, I think some Christian Scientists do resort to those measures, but they keep quiet about it because it’s much more respectable to get a healing. (Personal anecdote: I have a scar on my forehead from a cut where I probably should have gotten stitches and didn’t. You can often forego medical measures without severe consequences.)

Not until I left the church.

One of my brothers-in-law was raised to think that he was the second coming of Jesus Christ. Literally. And I’m not kidding. He was the central figure in some kind of small cult as a young child and baby. I don’t know details, and I can’t stand the superior prick (of course he feels superior, right?), but I’ll try to pump my wife (heh!) for details. He doesn’t have the actual delusion of being god - they stopped teaching that in his teens. He’s now practicing some ridiculous self-invented amalgamation of Santeria and Wicca, and has dragged my formerly-just-Wiccan Sis-in-law into it.

At least they’re more interesting than all the christians in the family.


Interesting thread. I hope nobody minds if I have a question for the Christian Scientists: I recall seeing storefront “Christian Science Reading Rooms,” and I also recall that the Christian Science Monitor had something of a decent reputation in print journalism. But neither seemed to be pushing Christian Science–the Reading Rooms had, from what I could see through the window from the street, a fairly normal selection of reading material on the shelves (newspapers and mainstream magazines such as Time and Newsweek, for example), and the Monitor items that were reprinted in such publications as Reader’s Digest never seemed to have much to do with religion. Just what were these vehicles designed to do? I didn’t imagine that stopping in to read a secular publication such as Time or the local daily newspaper was going to ensnare me in a cult, especially if the Monitor itself didn’t seem to push Christian Science. What was the goal of having the Reading Rooms and the Monitor?

The holy scriptures of the religion I was raised in taught things such as:

In the language of God, Shinehah means Sun. Kokob means star. Olea means moon. and Kokaubeam means stars, or all the lights in the night sky. (1)

God lives on a planet surrounding a star. The star is the brightest light of any star in the sky, because God is nearest to it. (2)

On God’s planet, one day is equal to one thousand Earth years. (3)

The founder’s wife was admonished in a written revelation received by the founder that she should let the founder have all the women he wanted, but should be faithful to him, and if she did not do this, she would be destroyed. (4)

There are so many more crazy things I once believed about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Mormons.

  1. Pearl of Great Price (PGP) Abraham 3:13
  2. PGP Abraham 3:16
  3. PGP Abraham 3:4
  4. Doctrine and Covenants (DC) 132:52-54

That one’s fairly easy. Bad eyesight won’t correct itself, so you can’t praise God for the healing power of time nor blame the victim for not praying hard enough if they die.

Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no substitute for a good blaster at your side.

Funny, where I come from (Newfoundland), Pentecost is pretty much mainstream. My grandmother and her family are Pentecostal. She married a Catholic, so, nominally, I, my aunts and uncles, and my cousins are all Catholic…I don’t think any of us are practising, though are few of us are still believers. Never struck me as particularly ‘kooky’ in any way, even aside from not being outside the mainstream - a lot different than our Catholic services, for sure, but not odd. (IIRC, the Pentecostal church was directly across the street from the Catholic in the town I grew up in…may have been the Anglican crosswise, though, and the Pentecost a ways down the street from there.)

Twicky I thought your PhD was in Crossword Puzzles. I mean, that’s hardcore smartypants stuff.

Suddenly, you rock on a whole different level! and you knit, too! You can’t possibly be more awesome!

Well, I could lose 20 pounds. :wink:

Dumb question for the Christian Scientists – are you allowed to use Band-aids? Bactine? For instance, The wind of my soul, the cut that left a scar – how did you treat it?

I was raised around and still spend a lot of time with Old Order Dunkards/Amish/Anti-baptists. Kooky isn’t a phrase I would dream of using but some of their practices are hard to follow in terms of logic. For example, whenever one of the Amish kids (or their parents) was over for dinner, the thing he wanted more than anything else was french fries. To many Amish, making french fries is a ticket straight to Hades because of how wasteful it is - how much grease is lost in making them. But eating them is fine and dandy! Same with cars - owning and driving them, sinful. Hitching rides from us English, fine. In other words its OK to take advantage of someone else’s sins just as long as you don’t commit them yourself.

I was raised as a Dunkard. Similar to Mennonite, not as strict as Amish. The thought isn’t that you can hitch a ride and take advantage of someone else’s sin; the thought is that this is ok because you are still keeping your traditional way of life. Same way as using another person’s phone. The church realizes the necessity of using modern conveniences as long you can still live a traditional life.

BTW, it’s Anabaptist, but I suppose anti-Baptist might work too.

My Nana was a rolling on the floor, faith healing, speaking in tounges pentecostal, but in some ways, I still see pentecostal with in the spectrum of mainstream.

I had a roommate back in the early 1990’s who grew up in a cult. They had a compound somewhere around Edmonton Alberta where she had grown up. Her parents had left by the time the compound was investigated (late 1980’s - maybe early 1990’s), she had clipping from the newspaper about it. I think they were called Church of God. We (the other roomies & I) never really asked her about her childhood in the cult - I suppose we didn’t really want to know about something that extreme.

She was a bit of a strange girl. She did a midnight move from our place to live with her coke using boyfriend. I can only imagine that her childhood messed her up somehow.

I was raised Seventh Day Adventist, which isn’t a cult or anything per se, but does show up often as the previous religion of those involved in (or recently removed from) cults, so that’s interesting.

Dogmatically, Adventists are basically Baptists with a hint of Judaism: worship on Saturday (from Friday sundown to Saturday sundown) and eat according to the laws in Leviticus (meaning that ham and bacon and all other delicious things pork are avoided), but no dancing, no drinking, no card playing, all that. Fundamentalist Protestantism. I have no issues with these practices or beliefs (well, except the pork thing - how can something so tasty be bad?).

Looking deeper than that, though, Adventists do believe in some things that are, well, weird. Their dietary restrictions are one such. Most are vegetarians, which is no problem (tho’ not for me). However, some take this to another level: no sugar, because sugar is bad and will ferment in your belly, so it’s just like drinking alcohol. (Me: huh? The mind boggles.) But they still like sweets, and so go to many lengths to come up with alternatives, like sweetening with apple sauce or carob or what have you. Some Adventists get obsessive about it, and that’s what’s weird. They don’t do it because of special dietary needs for a family member, which I could understand. Nope, it’s because sugar is bad. Don’t tell them that it’s a basic component of nearly everything you eat; it’ll just ruin their day.

They also have a prophet, Ellen G. White. Most of her writings are fairly innocuous, but some are strange. Like the one about not riding bicycles. For a religion that faults others for holding this human or that human too high, they’ve nearly elevated her to the pantheon, and it’s…uncomfortable, for me. There’s also evidence that instead of being divinely inspired, some of her writings are either outright theft or were written for her, and it gets a little less exalted and a little more sketchy.

Finally, their translation of the Bible. They’ve come up with one, called The Clear Word (or something like that; I forget). Instead of going back to the Greek, Hebrew, or Latin sources and retranslating, like many legitimate translations do, they’ve taken a different tack and have decided to insert their own dogmatic beliefs, putting Adventist beliefs from separate sources right there in the text of the Bible itself. This one really isn’t kosher with me, as it seems to reinforce the aura of “don’t ever question, just trust what we tell you” that I find permeates the church.

I take this remark as a personal insult. I keep full dossiers on all Dopers, thankyouverymuch. It’s part of my paranoid megalomania.

that’s not unique to the Amish. there are some people that make regular employ of nonbelievers to engage in sinful behavior for them.

My bad.

raises anti-flying-monkey umbrella

Very mainstream ones. Bill Clinton was a shabbas goy for a Jewish family in Little Rock when he was a boy according to his autobiography.

I’m not a Christian Scientist, but I did get a complimentary subscription to the Monitor for a time. What I recall was that there was a single page in each issue about Christian Science, often containing the writings of Mary Baker Eddy (the church’s founder).

prepares anti-OMAC countermeasures