don’t you want to be a cult leader?

By Amelia Roxby

¨I can’t dislike you, but I will say this to you: you haven’t got long before you are all going to kill yourselves, because you are all crazy. And you can project it back at me, but I am only what lives inside each and every one of you.¨ – Charles Manson

How does one go about the process of collecting devoted followers who give their lives, money, bodies, and leave their loved ones for you? Don’t you want to be seen as holy divine? How quickly can you tap into the vulnerability of your followers, and successfully institute thought reform?

Crossing Burning by Klu Klux Klan members in 1914

In “The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night Time” deceit is a major theme which I decided to relate to cults. Cults are based on deceit, one must create a “plausible” scheme to bait in their vulnerable followers. Cult leaders always place the sugar coating at the top most visible side while leaving the dark, manipulative pieces at its very core. Cult leaders often do not tell their followers their true identity, they leave out important information or distort it so it is more appealing, cults are based on lies, this is how they gain followers trust and continue on with their manipulative ways. Many are disguised as spiritual revelations such as bible groups, meditation classes, drug rehab etc, once the new follower attends it is easier to pull them into more activities and let them in on further secrets. If you offer them something free like dinner or a class, they will feel obliged to give something in return, like attend your bible group with you. It is easier prey on existing religions, this creates a target group of people already believing in a higher being and are more likely to want to explore ways to be closer to said higher being or work towards being a more “godly” person. As a cult leader you must feed into peoples desires such as world peace, a family structure they lack, powers (mystical or not), self improvement, thus tapping into a craving that they will likely seek out due to curiosity or hope. As humans naturally seek purpose in their lives it is an easy task to push that your cause IS that purpose. Time is also to your advantage when starting a cult as you can warn your potential followers that time is running out, using the end of the world, the rapture etc as motivators. You must push that it is important to make a decision now, before it is too late for them. Surround your new recruits with devoted followers, by doing this you may tap into their psychology and will likely follow what everyone around them is doing and deem it normal. This removes room for doubt, as if two new recruits are together they can discuss the abnormality and deem it not normal, letting doubt in. You must surround them with unconditional love and affection,via love bombing, make them feel safe, invite them to discussion groups to ween out information on their personal life. This can lead you to weaknesses that will be useful in their brain washing process. Later you can gradually shape the recruits behavior by giving or withholding this love and affection, after they have bonded with your cult family you can begin to make demands. It is easy to subtly begin to control their behavior, suggest they live with you, wear a certain color of clothing or eat a certain type of food, sleep this long etc by promoting the leader knows whats good for you, and each and everyone one of us. Keeping your members in a strict schedule and without sleep and restrict them to low protein foods making them more susceptible to your will. Control their emotions by inducing guilt, with remarks

Rajneeshee cult meditation service, members all dressed in reds

like “people are dying of starvation”, and fear by stating consequence if they chose outside of your path of light. You must also control the information available to your followers to prevent doubt, remove all information that critical of your work, regarding deep inner workings of your cult and encourage your followers to spy and tell when someone is acting against the cause. When new recruits experience mental breakdowns from the mental and physical brain washing abuse you must encourage them into believing its a spiritual awakening, that their pain or depression is simply a side effect of your holy cleanse. Create uneasiness within the self by creating conflicts and telling them things such as “you are at war with your inherently evil self” in order to create paranoia and that they must eliminate this in order to be happy. You must also authenticate yourself and your authority via divine reason, fake scientific research or claiming to have special knowledge and be the enlightened one. Practice rituals of repetition that stop thought, like dancing, singing, chanting, heavy breathing or long mediation. In these trance like state your followers are more receptive and suggestible, making it easy to revert them back to childhood mindlessness, dependence and thoughtless obedience. To further them from outside influence you must in-courage separation between family and friends, stating they don’t understand them anymore. You MUST promote wholeness, and remove individuality and separation, create a hive mind. To create their appreciation hold confessionals where members demonize their life before the cult, even if it was good and demonize outsiders using them as a scapegoat. You are now prepared with the basic knowledge of mind control, go out and seek the creation of your new found society.

28 thoughts on “don’t you want to be a cult leader?

  1. I started a cult about 2 years ago and I have a slightly different opinion of how to control followers. The most powerful tactic is making yourself the sole source of information this allows for an adaptable but also strong reliance on yourself the leader.

    Other than that I have experienced much of what you covered and the topic was done extremely well, good job.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is an excellent article! Now I want to create my own cult. I enjoyed how you put a quote from Charles Manson at the beginning. A real attention getter!

    Like

  3. I like that you chose an interesting topic and were still able to relate to a theme of the book. I never realized how much manipulation went into intentional deceit and you found a way to explain it without being too serious.

    Like

  4. Very intriguing article.. sort of concerned on your vast knowledge.. none of the less, I was interested in the topic of new recruits. Even if the “love bombing” and “brainwashing” were to be enacted, what if the individual decides that they do not wish to become a devoted follower? Could inexperienced leaders fail to captivate the recruit? Or is there also a fear of the individual exposing private information of the developing cult?

    Like

  5. what do you absolutly need to be able to start a cult? and would you say fear or devotion is a better method of control

    Like

    1. Devotion created by fear of the world outside the cult will reinforce both aspects of control whilst also making yourself seem like the savior.

      Also what you absolutely need is self confidence and charisma helps too.

      Like

  6. I really like how you were able to tie in cults to the theme of the book. It’s peaked my interest into something I might want to learn more about, maybe more about other cult leaders and the psychology tactics they use. This topic was researched well and explained really well too. Nice job!

    Like

  7. I feel as though that because you wrote about this topic you have a wide knowledge of it… So do you have a cult? Has it already begun? While reading this article it sparked questions in my mind like these, very good writing.

    Like

    1. unfortunately, i’m not charismatic enough to run a cult, nor am i a good liar or have a need for that sort of gain. I just have a weird love for all things spooky, hence my last project being on serial killers.

      Like

  8. thank you for really laying out the process for all us simple schmucks. now that I’m aware of all the sneaky tactics of cult leaders I hopefully won’t fall prey to their tricks… although I wouldn’t mind some love-bombing here and there… what can I say? Little Old Lyle is a material girl

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Solid article. Now I can go into the world and create a large following to my new cult. Thanks a lot for the advice!

    Like

  10. It is interesting to think that although there have been so many cults throughout history, and their tactics have been exposed, that people can still get sucked into these deceitful groups.

    Like

  11. I applaud your ability to connect the book with being a cult leader! But other than that, it really made me consider the possibility of being a cult leader! A very well put together and convincing essay.

    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣤⣤
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⣿
    ⠀⠀⣶⠀⠀⣀⣤⣶⣤⣉⣿⣿⣤⣀
    ⠤⣤⣿⣤⣿⠿⠿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣀
    ⠀⠛⠿⠀⠀⠀⠀⠉⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⠉⠛⠿⣿⣤
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠿⣿⣿⣿⠛⠀⠀⠀⣶⠿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣀⣿⣿⣿⣿⣤⠀⣿⠿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣶⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⠿⠉⠉
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠉⣿⣿⣿⣿⠿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⣿⠉
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣛⣿⣭⣶⣀
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⠉⠛⣿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⠀⠀⣿⣿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣉⠀⣶⠿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⣶⣿⠿
    ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠛⠿⠛

    Liked by 1 person

  12. after reading this I have come to the conclusion that school is actually a cult along with our entire government. thank you.

    Like

  13. Rad topic… glad to see somebody as interested and knowledgeable in cults as I. I recommend to you to watch American Horror Story Cult, if you haven’t already seen it. From there I learned about Jim Jones and his mass conducted suicide. He had everyone in his cult convinced to drink poison and off themselves for a better chance in some afterlife. Although dangerous and often hated, cult leaders are brilliant. There is no denying that one.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. As a fellow former accidental cult leader i appreciate the recognition you bring to our largely oppressed subgroup and hope you and continue our rein over our disciples :):):)

    Liked by 1 person

  15. This really makes me want to be a cult leader. I like how you broke down and explained cults and also related it to the book. There’s something about the psychology and mysteriousness of a cult leader that would be a really interesting study. Do you think that people join cults to make up for the lack of something else in their lives?

    Like

  16. 2 things, first, doesn’t this class seem like a cult? Ms Ringer is trying to persuade us to do things, but shes just bad at it. Second thing, this cult thing is really interesting. I personally lead a cult out of my home (a cardboard box) and I think you got everything spot on!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s