1. A cult is a religious group with extreme beliefs and practices – beliefs that are often contrary to science and logic but they are believed as “obvious” truth by the cult members.
2. The members of cults often isolate themselves from friends, family and society and use deceptive and unethical recruiting techniques.
3. Use manipulative methods to control the minds of followers.
4. Venerate a human leader or leaders.
5. Recruiting work is performed by all of the members.
6. People are not allowed to criticize the leader, the doctrine, or the organization, or read information that is critical of the cult.
7. Members are trained to reject and disbelieve criticism of the cult as lies from Satan.
8. Members spy on one another and report improper activities or comments to leaders.
9. Members are taught to suppress anything which might reflect negatively to outsiders about the cult.
10. The doctrine is absolutist and the ideology is internalized as “the Truth.”
11. Members are told to avoid contact with ex-members or critics, even their relatives.
12. Members are instilled with a deep fear about ever leaving the organization, and anyone who does depart is of the devil and sometimes severely punished.
13. Members are emotional controlled and warned of being caught and punished.
14. Disciplinary action is administered by group leaders, which may involve excommunication for such things as questioning organization policy or doctrine.
15. People are encouraged to sacrifice education, career and family interests to server the interests of the cult.
16. Advocate socializing only with other members in the organization and avoiding outsiders.
17. The belief in apocalypse and Dooms Day, when all of a sudden the world will come to an end.