Monday, September 25, 2006

The Mahikari "chosen ones"

Sukyo Mahikari members are taught that they have been "chosen" to be seed people for the new civilization that is supposed to appear after the Baptism of Fire, and that they are "permitted" to be members of Mahikari, because they have a special past-life connection with God, Okada, and other Mahikari members. Now, why do you suppose members are told that?

Members are also told they must be humble at heart, so I don't suppose the above "chosen" concept is intended to make kumite feel conceited. From my own past observations, I really don't think most kumite do feel conceited about being the "chosen ones"...I know I always felt somewhat embarrassed by the "chosen people" notion, and I don't recall this notion ever being used with the intention of building up a member's self-esteem.

So, in what context do Mahikari people talk about special connections, being "chosen", and being "permitted" to be members? As I recall, the main use of these teachings was to explain away why so many people did not join Mahikari, and why so many members eventually left the organization.

Remember, at primary kenshu, new members are told that Mahikari is the one path to health, peace, and prosperity (ken, wa, fu). If the practice of Mahikari really did bring about these things, shouldn't there be millions (or billions) of members? Okiyome is reported to cure cancer and other incurable diseases. Surely Mahikari members who believe those reports must wonder why there are not thousands of sick people flocking to Mahikari centers and being cured.

If a Mahikari member ever stops to think that it is strange that an organization promising such enormous benefits has so few members....and therefore starts to question whether Mahikari teachings are true...then the notion of being "chosen" and being "permitted" comes in very handy indeed!

If a potential recruit does not join Mahikari, current members need not think that there might be something unbelievable about Mahikari teachings. They need not ask why that person is not interested. They need not question the worth of Mahikari. Simply saying, as members do, that the person in question was "not permitted" to join, conveniently stops any further thought about whether or not Mahikari is worth joining.

If a member starts to think that Mahikari teachings might not be true because so very few people join the organization, and many of those who do join eventually leave, the notion that such people are not "chosen" or "permitted" puts a complete stop to any potential discussion about people's reasons for rejecting Mahikari.

We former members have very good reasons for rejecting Mahikari. For example, I believe that Okada's claim of receiving revelations from God is completely false. We have evidence of the organization telling lies about Mahikari's origins. We also have very little evidence of Mahikari delivering what it promises to deliver. We have evidence (anecdotal) of serious mind control. I imagine potential recruits who decided not to join Mahikari also had very good reasons for their decision. However, current members can simply ignore all such criticisms if they think that only the "chosen ones" are "permitted" to join Mahikari or stay in Mahikari.

The "not chosen" and "not permitted" notion effectively stops members thinking that there might be very good reasons why the vast majority of people do not belong to Mahikari.


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