Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Welcome, and Introduction

Welcome to the California Cults blog.

For many years, I've been researching and writing about the cults, sects, and "new religions" of my home state. Save for a couple of pieces published on the Examiner.com site, most of my work has never appeared in public until now.

Originally I had planned to gather it all together into one huge book, with photos and illustrations. The daunting nature of such a task led me to split the undertaking into two projects: California Jesus, which would cover Golden State Christian and quasi-Christian sects; and California Cults, for all other groups.

Unfortunately, the demands of a day job, side business, and social life, worked against me finishing either project. Too, the fact that more than ever, writing and publishing is a mostly non-remunerative labor of love, killed my incentive to produce a finished product, in the form of a full-length paper book.

Although I haven't ruled out eventually tying all my work together into one or more published monographs, I created this blog to bring the work I've already done into public view. I've written the entries to be both entertaining and informative, and hope that casual readers and serious researchers alike enjoy them. Many of the groups I'll be covering have never had their stories told other than as brief entries in reference works, or scattered pieces in obscure publications; much original and secondary research has gone into bringing their tales to light here.

So here they are: the impossibly diverse, often bizarre, and always intriguing cults, sects, churches, and religions that have either emerged from Californian soil, or settled here to promulgate their spiritual beliefs and practices. I'll be posting both my existing writings and new pieces regularly, and welcome whatever feedback you can provide. Thanks for reading -- I hope you find California Cults as fascinating an expression of my state's history and culture as I do.


4 comments:

  1. I'm glad you're taking this step.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Joy. I've got a buttload of existing material to post, and a lot of stuff that needs to be written as well. This seems to be the best way to get it all into public view.

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  2. GREAT blog; so sorry to hear that the books didn't end up coming to fruition. Here's hoping that one day, they will!

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