Blog: Black and White Thinking - 2010-11-03

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F0.png Black and White Thinking November 3, 2010, Jefferson Hawkins, Leaving Scientology

One of the hallmarks of a cult (or any fanatical, extremist group for that matter) is black and white thinking. Things are either black or they are white. They are good or they are evil. There are no shades of grey, no nuances.

In his book Overcoming Cult Mind Control, Steve Hassan says, "Even the most complex cult doctrines ultimately reduce reality into two basic poles: black versus white; good versus evil; spiritual world versus physical world; us versus them" (And for those who believe "all psychologists are bad"…read on).

To give a silly example that won't upset anyone, let's say that there is one group that is violently against plumbers. They hate them. All plumbers are bad. Opposing them is a group that is fanatically pro-plumber. Plumbers are always good. They can do no wrong. These two groups get on plumbing chat groups and argue and argue and argue.