Sure sounds like he’s talking about the Republican Party.
1 seems potentially difficult to reconcile with 3, 6, and 7.
Aside from #5 and #6, this seems to be a list of signs you’re in a religion that’s different from the observer’s (and 6 might be read to apply then, also). Where’s the cult list?
Wasn’t there some purportedly magic jew who violated his merry way through pretty much this entire list back in the day?
A better definition, and one used by wide swaths of the secular anti-cult community, is:
1 - They lie to you when you come in the door. The organisation’s motives and what will eventually happen to you are not part of the presentation that gets you through that initial door and are probably specifically denied: religions deny that they are religions; political movements deny that they are political movements. Front groups abound. This is necessary to get anyone in the door and to incrementally change recruits lives into something totally fucked up.
2 - It’s totalitarian. The Great and Noble Cause explains all aspects of reality with complete accuracy and every part of your life should be informed by this. Mismatches between facts and dogma are not possible and anyone purporting any such are liars and enemies of the Great and Noble Cause.
3 - There’s somebody or some committee that decides all details and specific cases of what the dogma is and how it should be applied.
Note that there are many evil and disgusting organisations for whom 1 or 2 of these are true. They are not cults. In biology a similar observation is that the existence of the Black Death does not mean that malaria does not exist and that a description of a cold as a runny nose, watery eyes and a fever is not invalidated by the fact that peeling onions can make your eyes water.
Note especially that religion is not mentioned as it’s not particularly useful to classify things that way. See the cults of neocons, Lydon Larouche, many Multi-Level Marketing schemes, and North Korea. Religious terminology can be transduced to: Religion - Rock and Roll is great! ; Sect - but Elvis was the best; Cult - and we can show how to live your life just like The King so that you may partake of his greatness!
[We have that covered.]*
*offer not valid until 2281, hair gel not included, other terms and conditions may apply.
- Opposing critical thinking.*1
- Isolating members and penalizing them for leaving.*2
- Emphasizing special doctrines outside scripture.*3
- Seeking inappropriate loyalty to their leaders.*4
- Dishonoring the family unit.*5
- Crossing Biblical boundaries of behavior (versus sexual purity and personal ownership).*6
- Separation from the Church.*7
- that’s Mike Bickle Brand Critical Thinking
- unless the member is condemned by Mike Bickle
- excepting Mike Bickle Brand Doctrine
- no Bickle Brand Loyalty is ever inappropriate
- excepting mandatory homages to Mike Bickle
- excepting mandatory homages to Mike Bickle
- unless leaving a heathen church for Mike Bickle Brand Communion
On a related note, if you’re into opening up terrifying vistas of reality then the Esoteric Order of the Old Ones and Cthulhu Cultists wants to help.
35 For I have come to turn
“‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
36 a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’[a]
37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
38 Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
My check list is shorter.
Do you accept any of the doctrines of your religion (or political party, web forum, neighborhood watch association, Peewee Herman Fan Club, or whatever) as infallible axioms rather than merely ideas you currently agree with?
If so, you’re a cultist.
Note this categorization includes aproximately 99.999% of the human race, though, so it’s of severely limited usefulness.
Oh the irony. It’s funny how little self-awareness these guys seem to have.
Sign #8. The Kool-Aid smells funny
He got nailed for it.
When I first started in IT we were subcontractors for a large consulting firm. Members of said firm all seemed very sure (and full) of themselves, always “on,” but none of them were with the project very long because they were inevitably reassigned somewhere else. A co-worker, who had majored in psychology, suggested that the firm met the criteria for being a cult, starting with the fact that all new hires were sent to headquarters, where they stayed in dorms, for orientation – the first thing a cult does is try to separate initiates from their homes/families. And… I forgot where else I was going with this.
It sounds like you’re heading in the general direction of how these types of social phenomnon form, and in general, how they tend to use the same social and psychological tricks to manipulate individuals.
What would be fascinating is trying to figure out if these ‘tricks’ coming from copy-cat style social learning:
- cult leaders educating themselves on how cults form
Or is it merely that a cult leader is a social savant who understands how the human pscyhology can be broken or picks out highly susceptible people.
It’s likely a mixture of all three, and no social group is likely immune from this behavior.
Number one sign you are not in a cult:
You are willing to objectively consider outside evidence of whether or not you are in a cult.
That little absent-minded reflex has been programmed into you. I’d have it checked out. You were going to speak against something or someone.
Unless your cult has paid a an independent firm to certify your cult as cult free.
Though cults, to be fair, often don’t need to go to this circular referencing.
How’s that differ from the Esoteric order of Dagon?