How Can Young People Protect Themselves Against Cults?
- Cope with stress? When stress is getting the best of us, we are more likely to be “seduced” by someone selling “happiness.” If you are having difficulty coping, seek help from reputable, trustworthy persons.
- NEVER be afraid to question.
- ALWAYS be wary of anyone who tries to discourage or prevent you from questioning.
- Learn to recognize common cult recruitment tactics and situations.
- Be wary of:
- People who are excessively or inappropriately friendly. Genuine friendships take time to build.
- People with simplistic answers or solutions to complex world problems.
- People with invitations to free meals, lectures, and workshops.
- People who pressure you to do something you don’t really want to do. Don’t be afraid to say “no!”
- People who are vague or evasive. If they are hiding something, it’s usually because they don’t want you to know!
- People who try to play on your basic human decency. You don’t always have to reciprocate a kindness, for example, especially when it may have been a way to manipulate you.
- People who claim to be “just like you.” This is often a device aimed at disarming your vigilance.
- People who confidently claim that they can help you solve your problems, especially when they know little about you.
- People who make grand claims about “saving mankind,” “achieving enlightenment,” or “following the road to happiness.” If their claims seem too good to be true, they probably are!
- People who always seem “happy,” even when common sense dictates otherwise.
- People who claim they or their group is “really special.” Arrogance is much more common than genuine superiority.
- People who promise quick solutions to difficult life problems.
- People who claim that “you need to destroy the mind to find God,” or “the devil works through the mind,” or otherwise disparage the critical mind. Your mind is your primary defense against psychological manipulation. Protect it!