Cults and why do people join them?

Interesting definition of cult is provided in this video.

It is indeed a blessing that, as one of the first formal contemplative traditions to be established with conduct roles and codes, Buddhism fails to tick most of the boxes of the provided definition.


What is the most prominent feature of a cult?
I think it is not allowing to question the leader.
If I take this as the main criteria, I feel there are some Buddhist sects fitting to the definition of a cult.

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Thanks for posting this. A good friend of mine from High School got caught up in Jim Jones group and died at Jonestown. She was a very kind and intelligent young woman that I think was just too naive and trusting.
I think Buddhism has some built in mechanisms that - if followed - makes it fairly cult safe. But of course, it all depends on the sangha and the lay community to follow through with their responsibilities.

I agree. I think if you find yourself in a situation where the leader is beyond reproach - it’s time to get out.

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