The Dangers of Groupthink.

Radhia Gleis
12 min readNov 24, 2022

I spent twenty-five years of my adult life in a cult, under the influence of a narcissistic sociopath. I recently published a book called The Followers: “Holy Hell” and the Disciples of Narcissistic Leaders — How My Years in a Notorious Cult Parallel Today’s Cultural Mania. I wrote this book because I sought to understand why I made the choices I made in my life, so I could better understand why others make their choices. The following article includes adapted excerpts from my book.

The Followers is not about policy or political ideology or even the guru or our political leaders, as much as it is about the followers from the viewpoint of a follower. Having spent several decades of my life, now viewed in retrospect, and two and a half years of extensive research on the subject of mind control and groupthink, I have gained a unique brand of authority regarding this phenomenon.

When I was asked to write this article, I found myself facing the very dilemma that the nature of this topic presents. If I use terms that are contrary to one’s “groupthink” — such as socialist vs fascist, Trumpster vs Libtard, or woke vs sheeple — I risk losing the opportunity to present my thesis to anyone who is offended by my examples, because the “wrong” word challenges the very foundation of their beliefs. Such terms have become so inflammatory, they may make the reader uncomfortable, and many will preemptively label me one of “them,” go to their corner, and very likely lose interest in reading further. Therein lies the rub.