Cult is a subculture that diverges from mainstream culture.


Since the 1930s, cults became the object of sociological study in the context of the study of religious behavior.[1]

From the 1940s the Christian countercult movement opposed sects and new religious movements, labeling them as cults for alleged "un-Christian" unorthodox beliefs.

The secular anti-cult movement began in the 1970s opposing certain groups that were considered deviants. The Movement charged deviant religions for allegedly using mind control. It motivated and in some cases promoted acts of violence by some of mainstream members. Some of the claims and actions of the anti-cult movements have been disputed by scholars and by the news media, leading to further public controversy.


  1. Erwin Fahlbusch, Geoffrey William Bromiley – The Encyclopedia of Christianity: P-Sh, Volume 4 p. 897. Retrieved 21 March 2013.