How to End Up in a Cult
The Atlantic shares a story about the dismantling of a cult called EnlightenNext. It’s important to us to share this so that we can each recognize the red flags if and when we encounter such a situation.
A successful cult will generally come into a person’s life at a time when they’re at their most vulnerable. And it usually inches into their life at a pace that makes it hard to recognize what it is. Much like that fable about cooking a frog by raising the heat slowly so the frog never jumps out because the frog doesn’t notice it getting slowly hotter.
Here’s the short documentary from The Atlantic…
How do well-meaning, intelligent people end up in a cult?‘Holy Sh*t, We’re in a Cult!’
EnlightenNext was an organization, founded by self-styled guru Andrew Cohen, that aimed to facilitate spiritual awakening. Cohen’s most devoted students meditated for hours—at times, months—on end, were often celibate, and lived together. However, what started as an idealistic venture quickly turned into a complicated, often-sinister world that revolved around Cohen.
The story of EnlightenNext’s rise and fall begs a deeper question: How do well-intentioned and rational people end up in a cult? In this documentary, The Atlantic talks to former members, as well as Cohen himself, about their stories in order to uncover the life span of a new religious movement that, after 27 years, collapsed nearly overnight.