Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Let's join a cult!
During golden week I had a small BBQ party over at the Salaryman house with a bunch of old Japanese friends I don't see that often anymore since most of has have started families and everyone getting together is difficult to puzzle in. It was a "family fun" type of event with plenty of small kids running around the place and making a general mess and nuisance.
But one of my friends, a lady who was a former colleague a few years back and with whom I have maintained a friendship turned out to have found a new interest in "spirituality". She knows that I'm quite uninterested in that type of stuff and kept it quite limited to me directly apart from showing me the great amulet she had bought that would adsorb and protect her from radiation but I think that my reply of "Wow... that's really amazing... but I'm fine thanks, now I'm just gonna go get me another beer, I've heard that that protects me against radiation too" signaled that I wasn't too interested in hearing about it.
But every time she was left alone with another of my friends around the BBQ grill she launched into explanations on how you could learn to see people's aura and stuff like that, to much confusion of my friends with limited interest in things spiritual. She also mentioned that she had started to take "spiritual development" classes to the modest sum of over 1 million JPY (~$10,000). I can tell for sure that someone is experiencing a lot of development for that sum of money, but more likely the scammers holding the course than the person taking the lessons... But hey, to each their own, she's still a nice person and a good friend and it seemed to be quite benevolent in nature at least.
On a related note, the other day I talked to a colleague of mine, "The Doctor" who has a quite long academic career behind him before he went into business. As he showed me an article that he had co-written related to a therapy we were looking into. He seemed to get a little nostalgic and drifted off a bit as he explained "And I wrote this with this guy... really nice guy and very dedicated to the research... but then he got caught up in some form of cult and just up and left... Hmmm... this was about the same time as the whole Aum deal... I wonder what he's doing now... (changing to a sad frown)".
At this point, I have no real inclination to join any form of cult, but if I did change my mind the Romasophie movement would be my cult of choice!