It’s about time the traditional function of cult-starting became open-sourced for the mass population.

So you’ve been researching mind control and occult warfare. You’re beginning to understand the way hidden power dynamics play out and how humans are susceptible to basic commands. Now you want to become a badass social engineer of the mind, but with so many cult leaders in your network, you’re finding it hard to get into the business of total and complete thought domination.

Have no fear! Not everyone can become a cult leader overnight. Aleister Crowley didn’t just wake up one day and declare himself a cult leader. Or maybe he did, but who cares? It’s about time the traditional function of cult-starting became open-sourced for the mass population. Everyone should learn how to command one another, after all.

Step 1: Create an “us.”

The first thing you’ll want to do is define who is “us” and who is “them.” It is very important that your disciples believe in “us” so make sure to be precise here. Are you satanic nihilists? Futuristic gender warriors? Christian metalheads against the state? You’ll want to lay out your “us” like a professionally trained surgeon. You must always be able to invoke “us” to lay out your commands.

Step 2: Look for alienated and depressed teenagers.

Alienated and depressed teenagers are a prime demographic for cult recruitment. They naturally feel that nobody understands them, so who better than a budding cult leader like yourself to let them know that they are not alone? Provide these teenagers with the thought leadership they never had growing up. Do for them what their parents refused to do: call them special.

Step 3: Pose as an initiate.

Charles Manson had a harem of lonely souls that he turned into beautiful whores. How did he do this? By posing as a beautiful whore himself. He mimicked the behavior of his potential worshippers to gain their trust and acceptance. Always pretend to be a casual observer of the simulation you’ve created for your pawns. By the time they’ve realize that you’re the head of the snake, their agency will already be gone. “When in Rome” but for the mind.

Step 4: Invent your own jargon.

The more incoherent the better, as long as your initiates believe you are making sense. The key here is to make your initiates feel like they are grand masters of an elite inside joke. Pull this party trick off, and you are on your way to total mind domination. Always speak in code. Cult code.

Step 5: Get your cult to do something really stupid.

This is also known as the “flexing your cult leading muscles” step. You now have to demonstrate that your followers are willing to quack like ducks for you, (or chant like kings) so your fellow cult leaders will be impressed by your total mind control abilities. The more cruel and immoral the better, as you are sure to win points with the most wicked of souls. Your cult must go full retard, and you must wink at other cult leaders as the retardation is a-happening.


Follow these 5 easy steps, and you too can become a cult leader just like everyone else on the dark triad. If you get really lucky, your “us” may get coverage in a hip underground magazine that you can later cite at TED. Just remember one thing: a cult without a master is a failed opportunity.

Rachel Haywire is the Founder of Trigger Warning, and your hostess for the new cultural renaissance. She is a writer, artist, musician, and model. Recently she founded the INSTED festival, and is best known for her work in the fields of transhumanism and alternative media. She currently lives in Los Angeles, CA.