Menu Close

God is masculine – why people without religion fall for cults and gurus

God is masculine (Michelangelo's depiction of God as a man)- why people without religion fall for cults and gurus
God is masculine (Michelangelo's depiction of God as a man)- why people without religion fall for cults and gurus
God is masculine (Michelangelo’s depiction of God as a man)- why people without religion fall for cults and gurus

The following is Part Seven of an expanded transcript of a detailed and in-depth interview Patrick Wanis PhD Human Behavior Expert gave to Michele Morrisette with  about gurus, cults and brainwashing. Here Patrick Wanis reveals the significance of God being portrayed as a male (by Christianity, Judaism and Islam) and its connection to gurus and cult leaders; why people who don’t have a religion often fall for charismatic leaders and gurus. Click here for previous part of the interview, Part Six:

Patrick Wanis: Notice, too, in the Bible – how do we refer to God?

Michele Morrisette: God is usually masculine

Patrick Wanis: Right. We refer to him as Father. Now I’m not saying that it is right or wrong; I am not entering that argument because the original words from what I understand in Hebrew is that God had no gender but eventually as a result of many other factors and elements, we assigned God the gender of masculine.

We talk about God the father, then of course, you know, New Age came along and said, oh no, ‘father-mother-God’, and they changed it. They said God has no gender. But the point is that we do place God as a father figure and so for women, particularly these young girls, if they don’t have a strong grounding of the male figure and they seem to have a lack of direction in their life or they are missing any of the needs that I identified, it’s easy for them to become the primary demographic and the primary target for a James Ray or Charles Manson, a Mahendra Trivedi and all the others that we haven’t even yet talked about today.

Now, I think you had two questions. You wanted to know ‘how does a teacher morph into a guru or cult leader?’ and you talked also about the reference to people becoming almost Masonic.

Michele Morrisette: Yes.

Patrick Wanis: Could you ask that question again so I can answer it properly …

Michele Morrisette: I’m just going to read it to you as it came to us because I thought it was really just perfect for this. This gentleman was at a retreat and he says, “I can only describe it was a Messianic trail of thought amongst the supporters,” and that he was wondering what my opinion was because he knew that I had also been there just for a short time, too. So I had not responded and I would love to know your opinion because I think even – and maybe you’ve answered it just as you’ve been talking about how perhaps in some way Trivedi came as that father figure or as that expert in his area and for whatever reason people were following him; but I’m real curious about how does it then become the Messianic image that people start literally worshiping which appears to be happening at some of these retreats.

Patrick Wanis: Oh, I see what you mean. I thought you mean Masonic as in the Masons. You mean that Trivedi is becoming a messiah to these people.

Michele Morrisette: Yes, yes, exactly.

Patrick Wanis: Oh, OK. I’m glad that you cleared that up for me. So the first thing is from a psychological perspective, in group dynamics, the group becomes the total result of the mindset of the majority of people that came to the group. So if the majority of people came to the group with the mindset they are lost, ‘we’re helpless, we’re powerless, we need something, we’re looking for something’, then that person in a position of power responds to that mindset and subconscious need.

So this is the same way that riots begin, that for example a large group of people merge onto an area and their mindset is already one of anger, revenge, hatred, bitterness, vindictiveness. They’re bringing that mindset, so it’s easy. One person in that group does something, throws that first punch, throws that first bottle, smashes that window. People would follow because you already have the fuel which is the mindset (and after the second person takes action, the rest follow; it’s actually the second person that creates the movement or group action.) So these people are coming here to Mahendra Trivedi and they’re lost. They’re looking for something. They’re looking for a leader. It’s very easy for them to look up to this person because they already want someone to fill that role for them.

Generally, people need someone to follow. They look for a leader and if they don’t have a leader in their life; for example, if we were to get a detailed analysis of all of the people that are part of this retreat where Trivedi was, I can assure the majority would not be strong in any other religion, if they have one at all. People also need hope, and a leader or Messiah offers hope – hope to ease chronic suffering and offer meaning and purpose for life.

Michele Morrisette: So because they have perhaps no other standard religion – perhaps a clearly ‘defined religion’ such as Christianity or Judaism or Islam, then they might be more susceptible because they don’t have that community that’s already established that they would relate to?

Patrick Wanis: That’s one of the aspects. There are many others. It’s again coming back to significance. You’re right, connection to the wider community, growth, meaning and purpose, challenge, security, et cetera.

Now again, I’m not saying that religion is good or bad. I’m simply saying that if these people are already in a religious group, then they already have a leader. Whether that leader is Jesus, Allah, Buddha or a range of gods, they already have a leader, someone that they put up on a pedestal, someone else that they worship, someone that offers hope and meaning.

If you have a person that’s looking for a leader, and looking for meaning and purpose, and looking for connection to a wider community, and wants to belong to something, and feels helpless and lost and powerless, then it’s easy for that person to fall into a thing such as a cult or a group or a following of someone like Trivedi who incidentally – and this must be stated very clearly because it’s another part I want to touch on, has promoted himself in a specific way through his marketing. So his marketing team has promoted him as the next coming or the Second Coming of Christ.

Update September 2014:

Goel Ratzon, 64, a cult leader and guru was convicted of rape, incest and sodomy against women within his cult in Tel Aviv, Israel.  Over the years, Ratzon had 21 wives all living in one building and he fathered 49 children.

Ratzon demanded complete obedience and the women were not allowed to talk or have contact with other men, even their brothers. Some of the women tattooed Ratzon’s name and his image on their bodies.

“He’s the messiah everyone has been talking about. When people find out, this country will shake,” one of his followers said in a documentary film made in Israel. The name Goel means savior or redeemer in Hebrew.

Click here for Part 8 of the expanded transcript of the in-depth interview by Patrick Wanis PhD, Human Behavior Expert about gurus, cults and brainwashing; Patrick Wanis reveals the controversy regarding Mahendra Trivedi, a purported guru whose marketing materials promote and compare him to Jesus Christ and Albert Einstein:

Facebook Comments