Cults generally have unique methods to inveigle and brainwash new followers, so as to control and exploit them. The Church of Almighty God is no exception. The cult has fabricated a “female Christ” to deceive and brainwash common people, who will degenerate to into cult followers step by step. This article will specify how the brainwashing works.
Ⅰ. Alluring new followers by sophisticated reaps
Setting the traps, which caters to targets’ needs is the main method adopted by theChurch of Almighty God attract new followers.
1. Tricking people by Christianity and disasters
Taking advantage of people’s belief in Christianity, the Church of Almighty God distorts the Bible and spread rumors of mysterious phenomena to enhance its authority. The cult claims that, “a flash of lightning in the Orient lit up the sky in the West. At that time, the God gained a new life (as Jesus for the first time and as a woman this time) to redeemChinese people. As Chinese had long been oppressed by Satan’s tyranny, they would oppose and even revolt the God. So that the God befell in China to judge and rescue the depraved Chinese. Any nation or ethnic group disobey the God would doom beyond all doubt. ” Such menace cannot persuade all the people. So that the cult took natural and social disasters, including earthquake, tsunami, flood, SARS, plague, air crash, environment deterioration, as proof of punishments from the God. Such fallacies coincide with people’s fear of disasters and wish to avoid misfortunes. It is the most important step to convince new followers.
2. Creating new imaginary enemies
The Church of Almighty God creates new “enemies” that followers can never defeat to control their minds over a long period of time. “Enemies” can refer to individuals who oppose cults, organizations, the government or followers themselves. The cult claims that followers have been essentially poisoned by Satan, evils and Red Dragon. So that followers should conduct “detoxification” and penitence, investigate the reasons, “digest” myths and “jiaotong” for “truth” everyday (the cult regard followers’ gathering as “jiaotong” and cult doctrines as “truth”). Followers will suffer from misfortunes (for example, car accident or loss of wallet) if they are not pious. Besides, attitude towards gatherings is the standard to judge the level of piety. As s consequence, followers become “puppets” that are apathetic about their families, relatives and the society.
3. Prolonging the length of “digesting” myths
The Church of Almighty God arrange followers to “digest” myths in four steps for a total of 18 years. 18 years will exhaust the prime time of one’s life, so that such length of time is sufficient to control one’s mind. In order to develop as soon as possible, the head of the cult also stipulates that followers must fulfill their duties and preach the Gospel. Persuading and recruiting new members is the assignment and only way to get redeemed by the God. The method works in a similar way of pyramid selling. Hence the cult expands rapidly to more than 20 provinces all round China. Larger scale and more followers will in turn convince their belief.
4. Fabricating the process of redemption against the reality
The head of the Church of Almighty God is clear that followers will certainly have mental conflicts as they live in the real world and the whole society opposes all cults. So that the head sets another logic trap: belief in the God is the way to redeem, which accompanies long-term painful tests. For example, the Jesus was crucified. Getting over all the tests can lead to redemption, but if fail, all the hardship will be in vain. The so-called tests include objection from families, broken families, resignation, arrest, imprisonment and even death. Such expressions in various forms are the “highlight” of fallacies advocated by the Church of Almighty God.
In this way, a hardworking and timid individual will be shaped into a chump with no sentiments and respect for life. Even if the head of the Church of Almighty God orders him to carry gasoline to Tian’anmen Square, he will obey without hesitation.
Ⅱ. Fabricating myths to brainwash followers
Followers will naturally have the doubt that whether doctrines of the Church of Almighty God are created by a human. This is a taboo. Leaders of the cult have repeated that all the words were uttered by the God with a corporeal body, so that they create a book called The Word Appears in the Flesh of more than 1,500 pages. As humans are superior to the God, what they can do is to read the book with respect and obey the rules without any reflection or comment. Otherwise, irreverent followers will turn to deaf or blind and suffer from punishments. It is a common trick used by members of the Church of Almighty God.
A seemingly perfect logic may not persuade all the people without repeat. Thus the head of the cult asks followers to gather every day, so as to “digest” myths, pray, repent, listen to preaching and sing “holy” songs. Consequently, other social awareness will be oppressed by the cult doctrines and lead to mental disorder.
Ⅲ. Temptation, pressure plus enclosed brainwashing
Diverging from Falun Gong, the Church of Almighty God adopts brainwashing withcoercion. Hypnotic brainwashing of Falun Gong mainly tempt and hint followers, but the head of the Church of Almighty God repeats his authority and absolute truth to pressure followers to obey without doubt. As a result, followers will be obedient to all whatever the head orders to avoid punishments.
Different from Falun Gong, the Church of Almighty God has drawn lessons from publicizing and gather in a secret way. Members will not disclose gathering places to outsiders and new followers. Songs they sing are all pop music with distorted lyrics. Followers with pseudonyms will never use cell phones, renew book covers and always be alert to the police. To eliminate doubts, the cult head repeatedly tell them that as pious believers of the God in China were ruined by Satan and Red Dragon, they must act secretly. The head makes an analogy that just like people are not willing to publicize their treasure, the Church of Almighty God should act secretly. Once the Satan regime collapse, and the Almighty God unite all religions, everyone can join in the jubilation.
In this way, the Church of Almighty God allure new followers and brainwash them to give up work and “digest” myths, which has brought about many tragedies.