Tactics Of Thought Reform

Tactics of reform fall generally into three categories:

  • Destabilize a person’s sense of self
  • Get the person to drastically reinterpret his or her life’s history and radically alter his or her worldview and accept a new version of reality and causality
  • Develop in the person a dependence on the organization, and thereby turn the person into a deployable agent of the organization

Scholars have looked at it in different ways:

Condition
(Singer)
Themes
(Lifton)
Stages
(Schein)
1. Keep the person unaware of what is going on and the changes taking place. 1. Unfreezing
2. Control the person’s time and, if possible, physical environment.
3. Create a sense of powerlessness, covert fear, and dependency.
4. Suppress much of the person’s old behavior and attitudes.
1. Milieu control.
2. Loading the language.
3. Demand for purity.
4. Confession.
5. Instill new behavior and attitudes 5. Mystical manipulation.
6. Doctrine over person.
2. Changing
6. Put forth a closed system of logic; allow no real input or criticism. 7. Sacred science.
8. Dispensing of existence.
3. Refreezing

The Control Theory of deviant behavior explains that people deviate from societal norms when their commitments to a deviant group outweigh their commitments to society on the whole. See more at 1 Conversion and Christian Growth.

Cults In Our Midst fragments

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