Essay by jamietham89Middle School, 6th gradeA-, July 2004

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Each year, hundreds of North Americans join one of the increasing,

estimated 3000 unorthodox religions that exist across North America. The

increasing number of cults, to date in North America, is due to the fact

that cults are a social movement that attempts to help people cope with

their perceived problems with social interaction. Cult recruiters target

those who perceive themselves as different from the rest of society, and

give these individuals the sense of belonging that they crave. Cult

literature lures potential cult members by appealing to their desperate

need to socially fit in. Cults provide a controlled family environment

that appeals to potential cult members because it is a removal from the

exterior society.

Cult recruiters prey on those who see themselves as alienated from the

rest of society, and give these people the sense of conformity that they

desire. A common method of recruiters, to obtain new members, is through

chat lines on the internet.

A recorded conversation between a member of the

Divine Light Mission, Fire-Shade, and an 18-year old boy, Jay 18, was

obtained off of the site, IRC Teen Chat.

Jay18: I am a really great poet, but all of the kids in my

class are pretty warped about it. I basically hide it from them

because I don't need that hassle.

Fire-Shade: My family has a great respect for the artist inside

us all. I know you live in Michigan, and our family could

always use new operatives all over the world. You have to

understand what our family is about, it is about always fitting

in and never hiding the truth to be liked or cool. Are you


Jay18: Well maybe

Fire-Shade: Give me your phone number we really shouldn't

talk about this here.

Jay18: I would rather not give my...