By Bernard Wainaina
“ODM/ CORD is Raila. Without him, Uhuru/ Ruto’s 2017 victory is guaranteed.”~ Gem MP, Jakoyo Midiwo,
The level of ODM party intolerance and the
insults have reached dangerous levels.
The degree of blind loyalty to party leaders is no longer healthy for Kenya’s political, social and economic future.
It cannot be possible that leaders always have
a common ground on issues just because they belong to the same party; not a common
Party leaders are always right, however obvious their lies.
It is only in Kenya where leaders talk of unity
when their actions are clearly divisive, they
are full of anti-tribalism statements yet their
actions say otherwise, and their followers
At this point it is important to define a cult.
A cult is a religious, social or political group
with socially deviant and unique beliefs and
practices who unite around a strong authoritative figure.
Cults, like many other organisations, attempt to expand their influence for the purposes of power and money or sometimes just for prestige of being in total control.
To achieve these, dangerous cults employ a
potent mixture of influence techniques and
deception to attain psychological control over
members and new recruits.
This is sometimes referred to as brainwashing,
thought reform, or mind control.
For successful cult-building, there has to be a
perennial enemy to be blamed for all the evil things that happens to the cult or its members and there has to be a common but a generally vague goal.
Joe Navarro a former FBI agent who investigated several cults in the US published a list of telltale signs that a group leader is cultic.
»Overrates self: Has a grandiose idea of who he is and what he can achieve, is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, or brilliance and is frequently boastful of real or imaginary accomplishments.
A cult leader sees himself as “unstoppable”, perhaps he even says so.
He is rigid, unbending and insensitive. It is his way or no way.
»Dictatorial: Demands blind unquestioned obedience,requires excessive admiration from followers and outsiders, has an exaggerated sense of power (entitlement) that allows him to bend rules and break laws and must be treated specially at all times.
Does not seem to listen well to the needs of others, communication is usually one-way, in the form of dictates.
Is hypersensitive to how he is seen or perceived by others, behaves as though people are
objects to be used, manipulated or exploited for
When criticised he tends to lash out not just with anger but with rage.
Refers to anyone who criticises him, questions him or non-cult members as ‘enemies’, possessed by ‘enemies’ or sent by the ‘enemies’
He has ‘magical’ answers or solutions to problems and believes he possesses the
answers and solutions to all problems.
»Self-Centred: Is exploitative of others by asking for favours, financial or otherwise, putting others at economic risk.
He ignores the needs of others,including: biological, physical, emotional or financial.
Always wants to be the centre of attention and does things to distract others and to ensure that he or she is the only one being noticed by arriving late at functions, using exotic clothing, giving overdramatic speeches, or by making theatrical entrances.
Insists in always having the best of anything; house, car, jewelry, clothes, even when others are relegated to lesser facilities, amenities or clothing.
He believes that his leadership to the group is a privilege to the group members.
The word “I” dominates his conversations.
He is oblivious to how often he refers
Doesn’t seem to feel guilty of anything he has done wrong nor does he apologise for his actions.
Rarely says thank you.
He is constantly looking out for those who are a threat or those who revere him.
Seems to be highly dependent of tribute and adoration and will often fish for compliments.
»Uses deception and lies: Conceals background – social, academic or family – which would disclose how plain or ordinary he is.
Doesn’t think there is anything wrong with self – in fact sees himself as perfect or ‘blessed’.
He uses enforcers or sycophants to ensure compliance from members or believers.
Sycophants are generally capable of saying things about him that he would not be able to say himself,or lies that he would easily disown if they become too obvious.
Sycophants are capable of telling blatant lies
without feeling guilty.
A cult leader disappears from the limelight whenever things are not in his favour,or if conditions allow, he takes away all cult members from the public and their families.
Leading American exit-counselor Steve Hassan wrote:
”Nobody sets out to join a cult. No one knowingly wants to give up their life, their needs or goals.
They come believing they’re improving themselves and improving the world and it is then they are led into a psychological trap. It could happen to anybody”
Steve put out 10 points to look out for to know if your group is a cult.
~Obsessed about the group or the leader, putting it above most other considerations.
~Member’s individual identity becomes increasingly fused with the group leader followed by the group.
~When the group leader is a good example in
everything, he is the best in everything.
~Emotional overreaction whenever the group or the group leader is criticised.
~Belief that the group is the only way and they have a mission.
~Increasing dependency upon the group or leader for problem solving, explanations, definitions and analysis, and corresponding decline in real and independent thought.
~Excessive hyperactivity and work for the group or leader at the expense of private or family interests.
~Drifting away from family and old friends
~Preparedness to blindly follow the group or leader and defend actions or statements without seeking independent verification.
~Demonisation of former members or members of alternative similar groups.
~Desire to be praised for doing the right thing and fear of public rebuke.
~Unhealthy wish to be seen with or aligned publicly with the leader(s) of the group.
If you notice that most of the above is true about you, your group and its leadership then you need to take back the control of your mind.
Steve Hassan says:
“Being in control of your own mind includes being in touch with your feelings, having the ability to think analytically, question, look at issues from multiple perspectives, having control of your behaviour to take periodic ‘timeouts’ in order to reflect and be able to have access to information that may be ‘negative’ to the group leadership.”
Do these characteristics ring a bell when the behaviour of ODM rank and file is considered in objective light?
“The African Story as told by Africans”.©African News Digest®
“The African Story as told by Africans”.©African News Digest®