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                    Beware of the five ways in which cults ensnare students
                    Adjust font size:   Close Kaiwind Li Qingxi 2018-05-17

                    Every year, many students embark on a new life journey with their own dreams. In the seemingly peaceful environments of campuses, the infiltration and abuses of cults still exist. Students know little about the world, but cults are good at camouflage, violence and other means of trapping students. At home and abroad, there are five kinds of tricks for students to pay attention to. 

                    The hidden trap behind the “community” 

                    The campus community, which is the stage for students' after-school life, is a mixture of legitimate societies with some cult infiltrated groups hiding amongst them .These cults are disguised as false and colorful "communities". There are many cults which have been disguised as a "community" for a long time, such as the infamous "blood water and holy spirit." The targets of that cult’s leader, Zuo Kun, are the college and high school students. He often holds "teenagers and college students training clubs", "summer camps", "co-working clubs" and other activities to lure young students into a trap. He lets them serve in so-called "posts", cultivating their false sense of accomplishment, and then uses one of the students as the "spokesman” to attract more people. In addition, "Jesus Morning Star" has done the same thing: swindling college students under the cover of a music association, mountaineering association, fishing association, etc. Behind these communities are actually cults!           


                    FIG. 1: Zuo Kun and the mainland teenagers who were tricked by him 

                    The "elite" dream is a nightmare 

                    Many cult organizations have also used the feeling of superiority amongst young students, especially college students, to play the "elite card". The general practice of cults is to give young people excessive praise, and label them as "elite" or "outstanding". Zheng Mingxi, the leader of Jesus Morning Star, is good at playing this card. When he was recruiting college students, he called them "elites" chosen by "god" and attracted college students under the cover of a music association, mountaineering association and fishing association. The man, who was wanted by South Korea and Taiwan for harassment and sexual assault, has long since run away. In 2007, he was arrested in mainland China. According to South Korea's SBS television, there are at least 3, 000 victims of his sexual assault and sexual harassment in South Korea, including top students. The dream of being "the pride of heaven" was in fact a nightmare, and it is also one of the important factors for the cult in their attempt to use students' psychology.       


                    Figure 2: The cult has played an "elite card" that has ruined many students 

                    "IQ" is increased by bamboozling 

                    According to a report in Ireland's largest religious media “Irish Catholic Newspaper” on March 16 this year, the Irish Catholic Education Council warned Catholic schools to be "alert for Scientology’s invasion", at that time Scientology was invading local schools in the name of the "drug-free world foundation". Data shows that Scientology created a "cleaning" therapy, and announced that it could bring about a magic effect--actually it meant 5 hours’ sauna, then drinking a high-dose vitamin which is used as a resistance to infection of skin diseases (in fact it is bad for one’s health). Wiggins, a follower of Scientology, had spent a year attempting to popularize the therapy in 100 schools in Massachusetts, Cornwall and other places. He claimed this treatment would increase pupils’ IQ by 22 points, increase energy growth b a factor of four, and make thinking speed ten times faster. This kind of lecture can bring a great deal of benefit to Scientology from prices ranging from $200 - $300 to $750 - $1,200.           


                    Figure 3: Scientology collects money through the "therapy" to improve IQ 

                    "Abduction" method needs to be watched out for 

                    Cults have occasionally resorted to abduction in order to coerce students into cults. On May 5, 2017, according to Japan's latest weekly magazine, it was “popular” for the Unification Church in the 1920s to abduct students to develop believers. The cult used the name "Principle Research Society"” to induce many students to give up their academic careers. Once they decided to withdraw, they would be kidnapped, and it gradually became a social problem (see "The antisocial period of the Unification Church and kidnapping"). According to the pastor of the church of Yokohama, who has been studying the church for a long time, he recalled that there was "a succession of disappearances of students who ‘contributed themselves’”. One student’s parent (the mother) was even asked to pay a total of 100 million yen. 


                    Figure 4: The headquarters of the Unification Church (image from BBC) 

                    Threat of "assassination"  

                    Intimidating students by "assassination" sounds somewhat surreal and terrifying. However, this is the true story of a cult-like organization in the small town of Kidwelly in Carmarson, Wales. According to WalesOnline2014, a news website of the Welsh media Company, the group's leader, a mysterious Egyptology enthusiast called Collin Betley, often used occult intimidation and bullying of children and young people. A female student, now an adult, has revealed that he had told her that if she did not participate in a complex initiation ceremony, an "organisational assassin" would kill her. In the end, this shocking cult of long-term abuse ended with Colin Bertelli and three other members facing long prison terms for committing multiple sex crimes.       


                    Figure 5: Cults often use intimidation to control teenage students 

                    - In addition to the five methods mentioned above, cults have more tricks and extreme measures. Young students and their parents need to not only increase their alertness and guard themselves from evil consciousness; they should also not be careless! It is recommended that we should seek the help of social and judicial powers in a timely and decisive manner when necessary.   

                    (Editor in charge: Hu Yiting) 

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