“Finding Salvation with an Online Cult” — Vice, 2019, 19:03 — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2tz3H8YQz34
Most cults function as total institutions controlled by an authoritative individual. This cult, however, is different. Not only is it largely based online, but Unicult appears to function more as a support group for disenchanted millennials. The group provides members with an outlet to attempt to transcend the overly-rational structure of society, and while it’s certainly “out there”, it doesn’t appear to be based on an ego-centric leader with control issues. So, could we call this group a religion? What seperates a religion from a cult, and what separates these from self-help groups? Even more importantly, does ideology really matter? I think we’re too quick to label things “cults” nowadays. I think this group operates on the principle of providing an all-welcoming, positive space for people shut out of mainstream avenues of emotional support. Perhaps this could be interpreted as spiritual, but I think it’s something of an alternative lifestyle rather than a cult. What do you think?
From the video’s description: Unicult is not your typical cult. Founded in 2012 by self proclaimed pop-spiritual leader Unicole Unicron, this mostly online group and its millennial following studies everything from crystals to aliens and seeks to empower each other to seek joy on earth.