Freedom and Religion

The last presentation on the book Passionate Journeys: Why Successful Women Joined a Cult has really made me reflect on how little freedom we have in our everyday lives. In the presentation it was discussed that these women felt a sense of liberation from the everyday social norms that were set on woman like being a good housewife, not experimenting sexually and up keeping the image of normality. What I found most interesting about the presentation is that many of these woman were successful and living what others perceived to be the “perfect” life. This got me thinking are we all under so many constraints and just given the illusion that we are free? After the presentation I am surprised so few people have joined cults like the one in the presentation. My perception of cults was so negative than the one depicted, but I really have an understanding why those women wanted their liberation. The cult granted the woman freedom to explore life without the fear of judgments even if it was outside of normality. On the flip side religion can also constrain the way of thinking of an individual as seen in the Born Again Film. In this example, the way of thinking was very black and white. Obeying the way of God was used as an excuse for their way of thinking giving them power to think anyone who contradicted the religion was wrong. My question to the class is does religion compromise our freedom or does it enable us to have more freedom?