==NEW RELIGIOUS MOVEMENTS== From the early 60’s, there was a large growth of the number of religious organisations in society.
CHURCH – Large, universalistic organisations aimed to include the whole of society.
Hostile to wider society and expect a high level of commitment.
Typically led by a charismatic leader and claim to have the monopoly of truth. WALLIS coined the term “new religious movement” to cover the different types of religious movements growing.
DENOMINATION – Lay midway between churches and sects. Led by “practitioners” or “therapists” who claim special knowledge. He identifies between three different kinds of NRM. Offer a service, and claim to allow people to achieve their ‘full potential’. - WORLD ACCOMMODATING – These NRM’s neither fully accept, nor fully reject mainstream values.
Membership is more inclusive and they broadly accept society’s values. - WORLD REJECTING –Similar to cults, extremely critical of mainstream society, members follow with total commitment and usually requires a change in lifestyle. They require little commitment (apart from the cost), and members can live a normal life. They often stem from traditional religion, and attempt to revive traditions/beliefs which they have been lost in society.
Neo-Pentecostalism for example, attempts to revive the worships of the Holy Spirit.
STARK AND BAINBRIDGE – Three different kinds of cults – AUDIENCE CULTS – Least organised and do not involve formal membership or much commitment.
CLIENT CULTS – Act as a relationship between a client and a consultant. CULTIC MOVEMENTS – Most organised and demand higher level of commitment.
NIEHBUHR stated that sects are typically short lived for various reasons – SECOND GENERATION - Those who are born into sects lack the commitment.
“PROTESTANT ETHIC” – Sects that practice ascetism tend to become prosperous. DEATH OF A LEADER – Sects with charismatic leaders will collapse on the leader’s death.
ESTABLISHED SECTS – Not all sects follow the patterns outlined.
CONVERSIONST (Evangelicals) – Aim is to convert large numbers of people.