The Similarity Of Political And Religious Cults
A frequent criticism of any political figure with a devoted following is that the figure is at the center of a "cult of personality." Pay close attention to that word, cult, because Robert Jay Lifton says it's important.
Lifton should know, he's a psychiatrist and a historian, and from his view, fanatical religious cults and extremist political movements are not far apart. He explores the concept in depth in a new book, Losing Reality: On Cults, Cultism, and the Mindset of Political and Religious Zealotry. Hold on for a wild ride, as we track the progress of people who themselves take wild rides behind charismatic leaders.