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The Cult of Falun Gong

THE CHINESE SECT KNOWN AS FALUN GONG (also known as Falun Dafa) has grown dramatically in recent years using a novel fund-raising technique— dance. While other communal religious groups support themselves selling produce or clothing, Falun Gong uses a high-tech, high-volume dance company known as Shen Yun, with several troupes performing to huge audiences across the world, funding the survival and growth of the group and increasing the wealth of the founder, all while convincing their audiences they are supporting a worthwhile cause.

A cult is defined as “a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader.”1 The cult of Falun Gong is built around the rambling and sometimesracist musings of a man named Li Hongzi, and has become widespread and accepted in America and across the world. While it claims on the surface to be about wellness and happiness, Falun Gong has all the stereotypical components of a malevolent authoritarian group including magic, lies, a supernatural savior, the threat of a coming doom, and other standard fare of modern cults,2 with the added bonus component of victimhood.

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A Review of The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas are Setting Up a Generation for Failure by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt
A review of The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe: How to Know What’s Really Real in a World Increasingly Full of Fake, by Steven Novella with Bob Novella, Cara Santa Maria, Jay Novella, and Evan Bernstein.
A review of Investigating Ghosts: The Scientific Search for Spirits by Benjamin Radford
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Review of Truth’s Fool: Derek Freeman and the War Over Anthropology by Peter Hempenstall.
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