by Eric Jude Cortes
Life isn’t easy. We have jobs that we slave over, families that we have to please, a dirty world to watch out for, and ugly neighbors to avoid.  Let’s face it, the earth is a pretty lousy place to be. Fortunately, there is help for navigating this world. This help comes to us in the form of cults. Being that life is hard, and self-esteem and personal empowerment are overrated, cults provide the best way to find success in a hectic world.
Now I know what you’re thinking, it’s difficult to join a cult. It’s not like they put up billboards on the Jersey Turnpike. No cult ever calls itself a cult. Some cults disguise themselves as organized religions, social groups, or even personal improvement workshops. So to make sure you don’t make a mistake and join something legitimate, I have created a special list for you.
You know it’s a cult when…
Its members make zombie eyed references to its leader, who is still alive: I showed up randomly to my friend Roberto’s  birthday party, in an NYC nightclub. Whenever I asked people how they know Roberto, their faces turned white, their pupils dilated, and they each responded, “Roberto changed my life.”
They promise to give you things that you can probably get without joining a cult: Someone hawking Personal Dynamics once asked me to state three things that I want in life. I said, “an attractive wife, more money, and more muscles.” He promised that through the secrets of Personal Dynamics, I could achieve this. Three years later, I have an attractive fiancée, I make decent money, and my muscles are nicer than yours. I never joined Personal Dynamics. I used a solid work ethic, and confidence. But what do I know.
They don’t tell you what the beliefs, rituals, and rules, are until you are in the group: How do you become a Muslim? Ask an Imam. He’ll tell you. What are the rules of Roman Catholicism? Buy or borrow the catechism. Ask someone from Personal Dynamics or Landmark what happens in their initiation ceremonies, and you will not get a straight answer.
They pressure you to pay large sums of money to join: When Roberto asked me to pay $350 to join Personal Dynamics. I told him I couldn’t afford it. He lowered it to $250. I said no. He came up with all sorts of payment plans. It took him weeks to give up.
There are some of the best ways to join a cult. If you need any advice on which seemingly legitimate organizations are cults, some suggestions are: Personal Dynamics, Landmark, Dahn Yoga, and the Jehovah’s Witness religion. Check them out. You’ll be glad you did.
 This is a lie: I love my job, family, and life itself; and my neighbors are straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting.
 Name changed. He’s still my friend.
 Disclaimer: This article is supposed to be sarcastic and funny. I don’t actually want you to join a cult.
To learn more about Eric, randomly bump into him on the street and politely ask him some questions.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of
the author and should not be understood to be shared by Being Latino, Inc.