This week on the Carolina Snowflakes Podcast we’re answering the age old question of, “Am I in a cult?”. You very well might be and not even know it. In fact, cults are often quite effective at recruiting new members under the guise of “seeking truth” and “healing”.
One such truth-seeking cult made national news recently after the remains of its leader were discovered mummified and wrapped in a sleeping bag adorned in Christmas lights. The body of Amy Carlson, known as “Mother God” to her Love Has Won followers, was enshrined inside a home located in rural Colorado. Her death is still under investigation and so far 7 members of the cult have been arrested for abuse of a corpse.
After walking away from her home and family in 2006, Carlson found herself at the helm of a small, but dangerous cult. Followers of Love Has Won believed Carlson to be the God of all Earthly creation and that she had been reincarnated 534 times over 19 billion years. Through extreme forms of manipulation, exploitation and abuse, Carlson maintained her hold on the group up until her recent passing.
As far as core beliefs, the cult known as Love Has Won could be summed up as New Age Spirituality meets Qanon conspiracies. Carlson was a hardcore Trump supporter who happened to also believe much of what Q regularly touted as “truth”. As if Qanon followers weren’t culty enough, throw in some God and fear and end-of-days rhetoric, plus some astrology, tarot and crystal healing and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster. Such is the case surrounding Carlson’s death as it is believed she may have accidentally poisoned herself by consuming an excessive amount of a compound her anti-vax cult was touting as “a cure for covid”.
Tune in to hear all about Carlson’s role as Mother God, plus the techniques and methodology she used to maintain control over her members. It’s wild. You’ll also want to hear about what the group is currently up to – despite her death, they haven’t disbanded as of yet.
Lastly, we close this week with a bit of a game we’re calling “Am I in a Cult?” by utilizing something called the BITE Model of Authoritarian Control. The model, created by cult expert and mental health professional, Steven Hassan, provides a thorough and easy to digest breakdown of 4 components used by cult leaders to recruit and brainwash their followers. These 4 are: Behavior control, Information control, Thought control and Emotional control. We invite you to listen to the techniques demonstrated under each of these 4 components and see if you’ve ever been a part of a group, organization or even workplace setting that utilizes some of them. Not all “cults” are Cults if you know what we mean.
So be sure to tune in because this one is FASCINATING!