D = Denial of any authority except that of the cult leader. Governmental, academic, and religious authorities count for nothing.
Scholarly research, objective data, and reflective experience count for nothing. The cult leader is not accountable to anyone; he/she lives in a world of his/her own
making. Cult members deny every authority except that of the cult leader. They do not acknowledge legitimate church authority, but rather relegate that authority to
the cult leader. The members of the Gianna Movement go up to the altar to receive the Holy Eucharist from the very priests and bishops that they undermine. They bite
the hand that feeds them.
U = Unquestioning submission to the words and will of the cult leader. Those who ask questions are told to leave the group; questioners
are regarded as traitors, Judases.
P = Polarization results. "Us against them" mentality sets in. The solitary truth according to the cult leader alone is all that
matters; an open and honest search for truth outside the cult leader's realm cannot be tolerated. Those who do not follow blindly are regarded as "non-believers" and
are consider to be "the enemy." Members are "in"; doubters are "out."
E = Elitism. The cult leader and cult members consider themselves to be privy to insights and information that others cannot
see/hear/understand/appreciate. Common sense and good sense fall victim to the manipulation of the cult leader. Cult members are prideful in being members of the "in"
group, even though the majority of people in the community regard cult members as "out" in left field.
D = Divisive. Fidelity to the cult leader may make it necessary to separate from family members and friends. The cult can survive only
by seclusion with other cult members. Relationships suffer and break apart. Cult members adhere more to the cult leader than to all other persons with whom they
formerly would have associated. Cult members' most trusted companions become other cult members; people who think like them. Family and friends' pleas to the cult
members to abandon the cult fall on deaf ears. The Scriptural phrase, "having eyes, they do not see; and having ears, they do not hear," is fulfilled in their midst.
Mt. 13.13-15 describes the blind and deaf behaviors of cult members. They choose to remain as blind as the blind person who leads them.
"People who expect the world as it is to end soon
do a lot of very strange things."
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