the New Age Movement Harmless? Critics Versus Experts
Psychological Manipulation and Society
Vol. 10, No. 1, 1992
A. Dole, Ph.D.
University of Pennsylvania
D. Langone, Ph.D.
American Family Foundation
Following an earlier study of the views of critics of the New Age Movement
(Dole, Langone, & Dubrow-Eichel, 1990), in this article we examine the opinions of a
panel of 85 "Experts" believed to be sympathetic to the New Age. The panel
consisted of executives from New Age publications and other companies, astrologers,
psychics, teacher/trainers, chiropractors, and others. Experts responded to a
questionnaire inquiring into their familiarity with New Age, cult and occult terms, their
beliefs, their opinions on definitional statements concerning the New Age, their opinions
on the importance of scientific research to understanding the New Age, and their opinions
on practices commonly associated with New Age, cult, or occult groups.
When compared with 58 Critics, Experts disagreed substantially and significantly on 21 out
of 26 factor scores derived from the questionnaire. Critics were uniformly negative toward
factor scores measuring practices, beliefs, and cult, occult, and related terms; Experts
tended toward neutral or moderately negative ratings. Implications of these findings are
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