Techniques of Psychological Manipulation
Isolation loss of reality by physical separation from society & rational references
Hypnosis state of high suggestibility induced by hypnosis, often thinly disguised as meditation
Peer Group Pressure suppression of doubt & resistance to new ideas, achieved by exploiting natural need to belong
Love Bombing sense of family & belonging contrived through hugging, kissing, touching, & flattery
Removal of Privacy loss of ability to evaluate, logically achieved by preventing private contemplation
Sleep Deprivation 
& Fatigue
disorientation & vulnerability created by prolonged mental & physical activity and withholding adequate rest & sleep
Games need for direction when playing games with obscure rules increases dependence on group
Meta Communication subliminal messages implanted by stressing certain key words or phrases in long confusing lectures
No Questions automatic acceptance of beliefs accomplished by discouraging questions
Confusing Doctrine complex lectures on an incomprehensible doctrine, encourage rejection of logic & blind acceptance
Rejection of Old Values acceptance of new life style accelerated by constantly denouncing former values & beliefs
Confession destruction of personal egos, increased vulnerability to new teachings and recruits' weaknesses revealed, though sharing innermost secrets
Guild teachings of eternal salvation reinforced by exaggerating sins of the former lifestyles
Fear loyalty & obedience to grp. maintained by threatening soul, life or limb for the slightest "negative" thought, word, or deed
Chanting and Singing non-cult input screened out by demanding repetition of mind narrowing chants or phrases, when faced w/ non-cult ideas
Disinhibition abdication of adult responsibility encouraged by orchestration childlike behavior
Change of Diet disorientation & increased susceptibility to emotional arousal achieved by depriving the nervous system of necessary nutrients, though the use of low-protein, childlike food
Controlled Approval vulnerability & confusion maintained by alternately rewarding & punishing similar actions
Dress individuality removed by demanding conformity to the group dress code
Flaunting Hierarchy acceptance of cult authority produced by promising advancement, power, & salvation
Finger Pointing false sense of righteousness created by pointing to the shortcoming of the outside world and other cults
Replacement of 
pre-cult families destroyed by arranging cult marriages & "families"
Financial Commitment increased dependence on the grp. achieved by "burning bridges" to past,   through the donation of all assets

A Law Enforcement Primer on Cults (with a guide to the prevention of deceptive recruitment into cults) by Dale W. Griffis, Ph.D.

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This tutorial was produced for Psy 324, Advanced Social Psychology, Spring 1999 at Miami University.  All graphics are from the public domain, used with permission or under fair use guidelines, or were created by the authors.  Social Psychology / Miami University (Ohio USA).  Last revised: Tuesday, March 11, 2014 at 17:10:20. This document has been accessed 1 times since 1 May 1999. Comments & Questions to R. Sherman