HOWTO: Build a Cult Through Brainwashing

The Battle for Your Mind: Persuasion and Brainwashing Techniques Being Used On The Public Today by Dick Sutphen:

Conversion is a “nice” word for brainwashing…and any study of brainwashing has to begin with a study of Christian revivalism in eighteenth century America. Apparently, Jonathan Edwards accidentally discovered the techniques during a religious crusade in 1735 in Northampton, Massachusetts. By inducing guilt and acute apprehension and by increasing the tension, the “sinners” attending his revival meetings would break down and completely submit. Technically, what Edwards was doing was creating conditions that wipe the brain slate clean so that the mind accepts new programming. The problem was that the new input was negative. He would tell them, “You’re a sinner! You’re destined for hell!”