What’s Not a Cult but Really Seems Like One? Here’s What People Said.

Surprisingly, there are quite a few things out there that really do seem…well…culty, for lack of a better word.

And I’m talking about things that are definitely not considered cults…at least not yet…but hey, there’s always time!

What’s not a cult but really seems like one?

AskReddit users shared their thoughts on this subject.

1. The Order.

“In the Boy Scouts of America, there’s an honor society called the Order of the Arrow.

Just the name even sounds like one.”

2. Sell, sell, sell!


Anyone who’s been in sales knows there’s the weird sports/military vibe and it’s all about being all in on a product you barely understand. Also you’ll find weird acolytes of Grant Cardone, Tony Robbins, and all sorts of cheap self-help gurus that spew irresponsible levels of optimism that are supposed to hypnotize you into success.

In the end it just serves your corporate overlord because they exploit your optimism, then throw an endless supply of these bright-eyed (and often under trained) applicants through the grinder.

So yeah. Not a cult. But lots of cult elements.”

3. Interesting…


Everything about it is “Does this improve your business?” I mean, it is to the point of “Who cares if the Earth revolves around the sun? Does that knowledge improve your business?” Your family, friends, S.O., if they aren’t a member, you shouldn’t spend your time with them.

Don’t have hobbies because they only distract you from your business. Having to watch what you say around them. Is there some big thing going on? Buy tickets for it, make sure you show up to it, buy as many tickets as you can, sell them to your downline, your friends, your family, go back and buy more tickets from your upline and keep selling them.

Big event out of state? Do all you can to make sure you are there. Don’t have the money? Sell your television, your video games, your collectibles, your family heirlooms, everything you have because it’s only a distraction and not as important as showing up to these events.

These events are only you sitting down in a room listening to company millionaires tell you how great the company is.

Leaving the company? Shunned. I have a friendship with a couple of former Primerica people. Those still in it refuse to admit that I exist.

Working on a book about my time there. Names are changed to avoid trouble.”

4. Gross.

“Kids sports in general.

I’ve seen parents curse out umpires in tee ball games. Parents rig teams in city run leagues so their kids are on better teams.

Every parent thinks they have the next LeBron James, Peyton Manning, or Bryce Harper. It’s ridiculous.”

5. GOOP.

“Gwyneth Paltrow and her goop psychopaths. B**ch is an absolute loon.

Now you could say she’s a genius for what she’s done but in a documentary about her and her “work” it’s like she’s oblivious to what she’s created and thinks it’s because she’s actually smart and a credited scientist. Idk how to explain it really but she hired someone to follow her around and throw fake compliments to her that are totally back handed.

It’s funny when you watch this thing. I cringed the whole time and said what the f**k a million times.”

6. Culty.


Somebody tried to convince me at gym to try it and I explicitly said no.

Those people are crazy.

Won’t leave you alone and get their entire families involved in it.”

7. Join us…

“My girlfriend is in a sorority and its insanely cult-like.

They have secret handshakes and songs that she refuses to show me, claiming “we all swore an oath” or something.

I tell her that I promise you some of your sisters have definitely told their boyfriends/other friends whatever secrets y’all have going on and it’s not that serious, but she is undeterred.”

8. Agreed!

“The American obsession with political parties.

As a non-American, idolizing your politicians and voting based on party and not policy is just weird to me.”

9. AA.

“Al**holics Anonymous.

Essentially encourages you to cut drinkers out of your life and members tell newcomers “we’re your new friends now”.

You hand over control of your life to a “higher power” but in truth you hand it over to the group and your sponsor.”

10. Escaped.

“Marathon runners.

The obsession, the way it governs your life — getting enough sleep, early nights on the weekend for long training runs, talking about it incessantly, etc.

Ex-marathon runner. I escaped the cult!”

11. He has a huge audience.

“Joe Rogan listeners.

I’ve expressed this out loud to groups of folks, some of which listen to Rogan.

The cultish vibe of it put me off to listening to his show a while back….and apparently now he’s irritating folks with Covid related stuff so I just don’t see myself ever listening to it.

The cult makes me feel like if I don’t want to try DMT I haven’t lived a full life. Like….what the f**k? Really?”

12. Definitely.

“Fox News.

They keep dropping bits into sentences like “you’re not one of THEM are you?”

Very culty behavior.”

13. Always seemed weird to me.

“Disney worship.

As much as I like some of their stuff, I can’t fathom why people get so rabid defending them. To me they’re just a corporation that makes entertainment but others… it’s a way of life and it blows my mind when you run across someone that’ll start cursing you out for criticizing anything the company does.

The same goes for their work culture in the theme parks. Never worked there myself, but from the friends I have that did, they talk about the whole experience as some bizarre fever dream of constantly having to smile, forced to sing songs during meetings, never allowed to break character, all so as not to shatter the illusion that it’s the happiest place in earth.”

Do you think some things seem like cults even though they officially aren’t?

Talk to us in the comments.

Please and thank you!