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Even more controversial than usual, Law 27 is a guide to building your own cult and actively duping people! But behind the shock factor, the reality is that people do this all the time, from pyramid schemes to spiritual gurus on- and offline, so, at the very least, we need to learn how to spot a con if we’re going to avoid being a victim of one.
Jon and Dre discuss cults old and new and how they continue to gain power over the gullible through evoking emotions and avoiding concrete details as much as possible. They roast their old ‘friend’, the internet charlatan Tai Lopez; consider why people always seem to hate it when you dare to break with convention; and introduce their newest grumpy hashtag: #intellectuallyvoid.
Not unexpectedly, Dre plots how to set up his own cult, albeit one based around the motto ‘Fuck you, don’t tell me what to do!’, while Jon explains why he won’t be giving you points or congratulations for having babies or buying houses. They also ponder how Britain has essentially become a police state (and why we’ve let this happen); the serious dangers of giving bureaucrats and marketing people power; and… Jon’s fetish for elves. Naturally.
This episode includes:
- What’s the difference between a cult and a movement?
- How meditation and spirituality became the 21st century’s cults
- Celebrities as the modern gods
- The power of being vague
- How to know when someone’s entrancing you
- How churches work
- Why ‘political religion’ is a bullshit idea
- Our lust for hierarchy
- The dark cult of Apple
- The dangerous tyranny of bureaucrats
- The need for conflict in our lives
- Finding stability at the peak of the mountain rather than at the foot of the valley
Mentioned in the Episode
- Our beautiful new Philosophical T-Shirts!
- Idlewild remind us to Support Your Local Poet
- Daniele Bolelli’s excellent Drunken Taoist Podcast
- Aubrey Marcus’s Go For Your Win course
- Jon quotes from Terry Pratchett’s novel, Witches Abroad
- The Highlander films – there can be only one!
- The Game of Life. Which looks really shit.
- Isaac Asimov’s Foundation
- Our good friend Zofia’s Dynamic Meditation Classes in London
- The power and beauty of the Moscow Metro
- See Orlando Bloom’s haggard form in The Hobbit
- Steve Jobs on the danger of monopolies
- The chilling realism of Fight Club
- Do you need to use the sleep?
Challenge: Join Dre’s cult and don’t be a cunt… Let us know how that goes!
Be silly. Be kind. Be weird.
Join us as we continue our 48 Laws of Power review, exploring Robert Greene’s provocative and compelling book, in which he lays bare the history, practice, psychology, and philosophies of power that ultimately shape all human relations. Often seen as a handbook for the ‘modern Machiavelli’, we take a closer look, beyond the hyperbole, and discuss how understanding and implementing these Laws can actually enrich your life personally, professionally and spiritually.
Jon and Dre aim to get to the heart of each of the Laws, grapple with their sometimes disturbingly amoral nature, and discuss what the Laws mean in everyday life (often revealing their own experiences – good and bad – when they’ve either observed or transgressed them).