"You will be sucked into a multi-level marketing organization today, and will lose all your friends, along with your self-respect. Later, though, you'll realize that your new friends are much better than those old friends, and that you feel like you're part of a big 'family.' Or at least, that's what you'll say."
- Astrology reading from the now offline

  handbookcover-tn   childofthecult-cover-tn.jpg webmaster's books on cults:
Betrayal of the Spirit: My Life behind the Headlines of the Hare Krishna Movement * Cult Survivor's Handbook: Seven Paths to an Authentic Life * Child of the Cult

bookcover bookcover

Take Back Your Life: Recovering from Cults and Abusive Relationships, by Janja Lalich; Bounded Choice: True Believers and Charismatic Cults, by Janja Lalich (


Cult Recovery: A Clinician's Guide to Working With Former Members and Families

Editors: Lorna Goldberg, William Goldberg, Rosanne Henry, Michael Langone

This landmark, 500-page book, with chapters from leading clinicians and researchers, describes the current state of the art in helping people adversely affected by a cultic dynamic, whether in a cult, mainstream religious denomination, psychotherapy, family, or other interpersonal relationship. We expect to have the book available in early September. Regular price $79.


Perfect Children: Growing Up on the Religious Fringe
by Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist
Kindle edition

Releasing the Bonds, Empowering People to Think for Themselves
Combating Cult Mind Control: The #1 Best-selling Guide to Protection, Rescue, and Recovery from Destructive Cults (paperback); Combating Cult Mind Control (Kindle)
Freedom of Mind: Helping Loved Ones Leave Controlling People, Cults, and Beliefs (paperback); Freedom of Mind (Kindle)
The Freedom of Mind Approach to Helping Individuals Born in High-Demand Groups and Cults, Steve Hassan's talk presented at the ICSA conference, Stockholm, June 27, 2015.

"Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live."
- Oscar Wilde
Irish poet, playwright, and author

"It's not having been in the dark house that matters, but having left it that counts."

"The world of religion must open itself to unbridled competition of ideas and thinking."
- Sir John Templeton
American-born British investor and philanthropist

Don't join dangerous cults:
Practice safe sects!

"Of all the tyrannies that affect mankind, tyranny in religion is the worst; every other species of tyranny is limited to the world we live in; but this attempts to stride beyond the grave, and seeks to pursue us into eternity."
- Thomas Paine
An American Founding Father

Resources on the Web . . .

Amazon Bookstore


Fair Game: The incredible untold story of Scientology in Australia
by Steve Cannane.


Ruthless: Scientology, My Son David Miscavige, and Me
by Ron Miscavige.

breaking their will cover

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment
by Janet Heimlich
Award-winning journalist Janet Heimlich exposes a dark side of faith that most Americans do not know exists or have ignored for a long time. paperback * Amazon Kindle edition * Author's website:


Beyond Belief: My Secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape
by Jenna Miscavige Hill
Memoir by the niece of Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige.

shoes of a servant

I Can't Hear God Anymore: Life in a Dallas Cult
by Wendy J. Duncanville
The author's inspirational memoir of leaving a Bible-based cult.

shoes of a servant

Shoes of a Servant
by Diane Benscoter
Memoir by a woman who grew up in the heartland of America in a small Nebraska town with a loving family, then joined the Unification Church, also known as the Moonies. Paperback * Kindle Edition

Cartwheels in a Sari: A Memoir of Growing Up Cult
by Jayanti Tamm
Memoir of growing up a chosen disciple of the guru Sri Chinmoy.


Not Without My Sister: The True Story of Three Girls Violated and Betrayed
Kristina Jones, Celeste Jones, and Juliana Buhring


Losing the Way: A Memoir of Spiritual Longing, Manipulation, Abuse, and Escape
by Kristen Skedgell, a former member of The Way International
Click here to go to the Bay Tree Publishing website.


Seductive Poison : A Jonestown Survivor's Story of Life and Death in the Peoples Temple

by Deborah Layton, a former member.

God's Brothel: The Extortion of Sex for Salvation in Contemporary Mormon and Christian Fundamentalist Polygamy by Andrea Moore Emmett
Amazon reader review: Anyone who believes polygamy and slavery are sins of other cultures or times, will find this disturbing collection of true stories about contemporary American women who have escaped from polygamous marriages both shocking and a call to action.


Click here to buy Servant of the Lotus Feet from
Written by a former Bhavananda disciple.


Mad After Krishna: My Life in a Destructive Cult
by Paul Ford
Click here to buy Mad After Krishna from


Miriam Williams, a former Children of God member
Heaven's Harlots : My Fifteen Years As a Sacred Prostitute in the Children of God Cult


Flor Edwards grew up in Children of God
Apocalypse Child: A Life in End Times


Steve Sanchez, a former member of the Spiritual Lights Foundation

Spiritual Perversion - Steve Sanchez chronicles his fifteen year journey in this group.


Mary Garden, experiences with various gurus and groups in India during the 1970's.

The Serpent Rising
by Mary Garden

In 1973, Mary Garden abandoned a promising academic career to spend seven years in India at the feet of such gurus as Rajneesh, Sathya Sai Baba and an enigmatic yogi in the Himalayan jungle - Swami Balyogi Premvarni. The Serpent Rising is her own story of the heaven and hell she experienced as she fell under the spell of self-appointed "god-men."


Elizabeth R. Burchard, about her experiences in a biofeedback cult.

19 Years in a New Age Cult: Torn From the Arms of Satan
by Elizabeth R. Burchard, Judith L. Carlone


Nansook Hong, the former daughter-in-law of Rev. Moon (the "Moonies").

In the Shadow of the Moons: My Life in the Reverend Sun Myung Moon's Family
by Nansook Hong


Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith
by Jon Krakauer - explores the shadowy world of Mormon fundamentalism


At this Site - the good, the bad and the ugly - What makes a cult dangerous? * Do you need a guru? * 14 Common Characterstics of Cults (by Marcia Rudin) * Ten Points to Develop Healthy Boundaries * Born or raised in a cult * Story Matters * Nori's writing on cults.

International Cultic Studies Association a network of people concerned about cultic, manipulative, and abusive groups. As the leading professional organization in the field, ICSA strives to increase understanding and awareness of such groups and to help people that they harm.

Info Secte a non-profit charitable organization founded in 1980 based in Montreal (Quebec, Canada) that offers help and information about cults, new religious movements and related groups and subjects. Get on the mailing list to receive latest news articles about cults. #igotout - The Movement

Cult Education Institute forums - discuss cults, ask questions, answer questions. Resources for Recovery from Spiritual Abuse, Cynthia Mullen Kunsman, RN, BSN, MMin, ND

Counselling and Support Online counseling to fit around your lifestyle - Cathy Page, based in the UK Help Source, a support network in Sweden for people exiting cults, funded through the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare and the Swedish Agency for Youth and Civil Society; special thanks to Barbro Westerholm, member of the Swedish paraliament. Canadian centre that tracks the cult phenomenon in society, offering information, email lists, and other resources. funded in part by the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services, as well as individuals, and private groups

Watson Law Firm Attorney Lori Ann Watson handles abuse cases against religious organizations, and other organizations, based in Texas.

Thomas Sheridan satire on cults, including a rant on Gurdjieff groups. - support/recovery groups for adults who have suffered previous involvement in harmful/abusive religious or spiritual environments. former ISKCON member in Australia speaks out about her past, see: My years as a Hare Krishna in Australia's Daily Life.

Mushroom Satori: The Cult Diary, a novel by Joe Szimhart. See the book at the publisher: or Critical, Historical & Secular Perspectives for Former Seekers

Miguel psychotherapist and exit counselor based in Barselona offers information about cult groups (en Español with translation widget)

Sarlo's Guru Rating Service written with a sense of humor, this site can help sort the helpful from unhelpful new religious groups. Latinoamerican Association on Psychological Abuse, a professional association specialized on cults and other abusive dynamics (en Español with translation widget)

Joe Szimhart cult information consultant

Chrissy Stroop: Writer, Scholar, Ex-Evangelical The Underground Bunker - stay up to date on news of Scientology and other cults.

Anonymous protesting the cult of Scientology and its crimes against humanity click here - Help for people raised in restrictive communities (cults).

Joe Szimhart Cult Information Consultant provides consultation, education, research and non-coercive intervention that addresses controversial, high-demand groups, cults, psychotherapies, or relationships that use undue influence and thought reform techniques. Cult Awareness Information Centre

Editor's Note: Beware of any "book club" formed around the teachings of Alice Bailey, as these may exhibit the coercive characteristics of a cult that are inherent within the Alice Bailey philosophies - particularly the books, Discipleship in a New Age volumes I and II. ex-ISKCON member's site for fellow victims of brainwashing Rosanne Henry's site for ex-cult members. Help for loved ones, for people curious about cults. Stories of former members of the Gentle Wind Project (Editor's note: GWP is trying to sue these people for speaking out.

Gospel Assembly Free Opinions on cults and religious abuse Info. about cults An interactive website for children of cults. Focus on the Children of the Children of God (the Family)

Coming to Grips with My 30 Years in a Cult, by Mary Mahoney, former member of the Children of God. by John Huddle - Survivor, Writer, Blogger

Guruphiliac "Revealing Self-Aggrandizement and Superstition in Self-Realization since 2005." the New England Institute for Religious Research (Dir. Bob Pardon, site transitional home for people leaving high control and communal cults.

Apologetics Index - Research Resources on Religious Cults, Sects, Movements, Doctrines, Etc., sponsored by Gospelcom.Net, Online Christian Resources. Also known as, and

INFORM: Information Network Focus On Religious Movements.

Freedom of Mind Resource Center Webmaster is Steve Hassan, author, exit counselor, former member of the Unification Church, Moonies.
Site includes a good database to look up info. on cults.

Ex-Cult-Support This mailing list is for anyone who has been in a cult, a high-demand or spiritually abusive group.

reFocus: Recovering Former Cultists' Support Network

My Own Mind Info. and advice on groups that brainwash.

Psychic Junkie get off the roller coaster of spending money on psychic readings "Tracking spiritual trends in the 21st century"

Allen Tate Wood's Page Cult phenomenon and addiction - articles and essays.

Authentic Cult Awareness Network Webmasters are two psychotherapists with credentials in the anit-cult movement, including pre-Scientology CAN.

Cult Master 2000 Here's an anti-cult group that looks more like a cult than the cults they criticize. Check out their "CultMaster2000."

Do Cults Produce Mental Disorders? by Mark Dunlop

Is Alcoholics Anonymous a cult? Editor's note: A recent visitor and recovering 12 step victim send in the following links to show "how truly sick the 12 step movement is. It's just more of the 'chosen people' idoltry I heard in AA.": Mind Control Tactics Of Alcoholics Anonymous | | | | |

Critique of Dahn Yoga, aka Brain & Body yoga, tai-chi

Ex-followers of Maharaj Ji speak

Free Minds ex Jehovaha's Witnesses

Sex scandals - Guru Muktananda

Multi-level Marketing Watch - they have victims, they often operate like cults

Southern Poverty Law Center The SPLC focuses on criminal cults, and hate groups, such as the KKK.

Center for Studies on New Religions (Europe)

Watchtower Information Service

Sites for betrayal Sai Baba: (mirror site: and Belief and Sai Baba

Council on Spiritual Practices Check out their "Code of Ethics for Spiritual Guides" - cult leaders would flunk this one.

Cult Education Institute, by Rick Ross

Dr. J. Gordon Melton, an academic look at cults: American Religion Collection (ARC) at UC Santa Barbara

Controversial Catholic sect: and


Crazy for God: The Nightmare of Cult Life
by Ex-Moon Disciple Christopher Edwards

Edwards describes his journey through the Unification Church, beginning with his indoctrination and initial naive idealism. He brings the reader with him through the experience.

C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy (2010)
The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power (2009)
by Jeff Sharlet
Learn about the mysterious C Street Christian cult in Washington, DC that incites genocide around the world, working within the halls of power.

Hyperreligiosity: Identifying and Overcoming Patterns of Religious Dysfunction by R.S. Pearson. "This book is instrumental for understanding why people join destructive cults."

Survivor: A Novel A morbidly fascinating black fantasy about a young cult members rise to fame and his fall from grace, written by West Coast novelist Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club, 1996).

Alcoholics Anonymous - cult or cure?

The Guru Looked Good
, by Marta Szabo, ten-plus years on staff in Siddha Yoga ashrams.

StrippingTheGurus, by Geoffrey Falk.