How to Form Your Own Cult in 5 Easy Steps
Cracked has been on a real tear lately. Traffic on our website continues to climb, we've just launched a hilarious and successful web sitcom, and we've still retained our reputation as one of the world leaders in producing failed magazines. But where do we go from here? How can we top the incredible achievements we've made to date? That’s right. We get stupid, make bold claims, and go several steps too far. Like Coca Cola or McDonalds, we here at Cracked make an incredible product that is universally popular, and when enjoyed in moderation, a part of any healthy diet. But unlike those companies, we also have an intense craving for the world's population to erect towering ziggurats in our honor. Within our bones we know that everything we've worked for will come to nothing, if the story of Cracked isn't shouted from the rooftops and tattooed onto people's faces for the next twenty thousand years. That's why we're starting a cult. After analyzing all the best cults, sects and otherwise shifty organizations, we’ve selected the defining features that made them what they were. Adapting those techniques to suit our own purposes and distinct style, we've created the plan which is outlined below. We’re publishing it here because as you'll plainly see, our methods are unstoppable. Even if our plot is common knowledge, all the world's presidents, newspapers and NCIS units will be powerless to stop us. ____ Step 1: We're going to need a better Origin Myth If you thought Cracked originated as a variety magazine directed at the youths and feeble-minded of the 1950’s, you couldn’t be more wrong. You horse’s ass. No, here's the real story… Forty thousand years ago, when man was still living in nests and burrows, aliens from the rogue planet Dangleon visited Earth. Their first contact with humans occurred at a small settlement, and as they landed around midday, most of the residents were already out, hunting and gathering food. The only humans left to greet the visitors were those too weak or ineffectual to do any work; these pitiful folk lived off the scraps provided by the others, and mainly busied themselves by running around, giggling, and pinching each other’s asses. The Dangleonians assumed that these idle fools were the elite class of humans, and over the next four hours taught them the ancient secrets of the Universe, which turned out to not be that complicated. In the afternoon, after the Dangleonians had left Earth forever, these blessed few decided to keep their knowledge a secret from the fit and able bodied humans, and only use the information in the direst of circumstances or to impress women. They eventually passed their secrets on to the children they were finally fortunate enough to have, and over the generations this practice of secrecy was codified into the rules that formed the basis of our organization. Although we are most widely known in the current era as Cracked, throughout history we have been known by many names, including the "Knights Templar," the "Guhldan", and "Kelloggs." Famous members of the Cracked organization throughout history include Alexander the Great, both Jesuses, Abraham Lincoln, and Matlock. Every major turning point in human history (except for the Crimean War; that one kind of got away from us) was orchestrated by our organization. Similarly, nearly every major advancement in technology has come from a Cracked initiate, from the steam engine right up to Fruit Roll-Ups (which are way more important than you ever imagined).
Step 2: Recruitment
To grow from our current size to a world spanning force of awe and stupidity, we'll need to expand our membership roles somewhat. To this end, we'll soon be holding open recruitment sessions for people who want to join the Cracked community. Whether you want to access the source of all power in the universe, or hear our eight sure-fire ways to bed exotic women, this is an incredible opportunity, and you would be a mouth-breathing piece of stool to not take advantage of it. And, just a reminder that as we're launching the mother of all pyramid schemes (we will be building several actual pyramids) it pays to get in early.
The other key element of building up a cult is enticing wealthy, attractive, or influential people to join. Is that you? Well, if you're reading this on a computer, while sitting in a kind of dumpy looking office chair, then no, it isn't. Sorry buddy, hope we weren't the first to tell you. You're still welcome to join, but you won't get one of the cool celebrity perks, like the pen or the zeta-particle massage chair. Those enticements go solely to the A or B-list celebrities who join, who will hopefully help attract others to the organization.
Our web stats tell us we don't have any celebrity fans yet, although we have made several of them enemies (Eat a dick Phil Donahue.) However, we do have some leads; apparently the guy from Chuck clicked on one of our links accidentally. He sounds like a good place to start; we've heard he's pretty lonely.
Step 3: Brainwashing
Brainwashing has gotten a bad reputation, which is unfortunate. All it really means is wiping a person’s entire persona away and replacing it with an empty shell of an existence, so as to better abuse them and transform them into a willing slave. That’s all.
The techniques for brainwashing are pretty straightforward, and we won't mess with them too much. By isolating new recruits from the outside world, placing them in stressful situations, and pummeling them with childish insults, we will break down their existing mental defenses in two two-hour sessions. After that we fill them with just enormous quantities of psychotropic drugs, and start with the reprogramming. All the important assets a Cracked initiate is expected to possess will be impressed upon them at this time, such as a sense of irony and a detailed knowledge of 80's breakfast cereals.
Once we've got then all kitted out with their new brains, our members will be given new outfits to wear. Many cults help enforce the isolation of their members by adopting specific fashions, to distinguish them from the outside society. Eventually we anticipate being able to provide all new Cracked initiates with the silk corsets and assless leather pants that will make up our new regalia. But until we get our finances in order, all members will be asked to purchase a yellow t-shirt and shin pads out of their own pockets, and wear them. Exclusively. In the winter months, they will also be allowed to wear gloves.