Have any of you come across any adverts - in tube stations, local press - offering courses in Practical Philosophy? They're ten week courses, twice a year with weekend 'retreats'. It claims to offer open discussion and 'out-of-the-box' thinking, giving practical ways to improve your perspective on life.
I attended a course 3 or 4 years ago - I had recently moved away from 10 years of evangelical Christianity and was still searching for answers - Philosophy caught my attention.
At first the course was interesting and I was pleased to see another couple there that had left the church and were still asking questions.
During the ten week course we had a tutor and an assistant who 'led' the discussion, we were encouraged to do some meditation and to 'live in the moment' - all well and good so far.
The more questions I asked the more frustrated the tutor seemed to become. I tried very hard to not be over-inquisitive and to give others a chance to interpret what we were being led to 'believe' - but that was the problem: we were being told what to believe, not encouraged to think for ourselves and come to our own conclusions.
Although by the end of the first course I was feeling a little uncomfortable, I decided to go on to level two when the next course started. I did a lot of reading in the meantime.
Two weeks in and I was called into an office in the convent where the course was being held. The tutor, who always spoke very calmly and deliberately, 'advised' me that the course was not for me and that I should not return. I asked too many questions and wasn't really 'taking' to the lessons. I was devastated! Not that I was asked to leave but to be told I asked too many questions, again - that's exactly what my church had told me!
It wasn't until now that I decided to look up the organisation - CULT!
Here's what I found-
They also run schools!
I'm just pleased my big mouth got me kicked out! :-)