How to brainwash someone in 4 easy steps
Professor Richard Wiseman in Paranormality has a chapter on mind control. He uses cult leader Jim Jones as his example for how these mind control techniques are used.
Get your foot in the door.
If you can get someone to comply with small demands, they are more likely to comply with bigger demands. If you jump to your large request first, they are more likely to refuse you. Our PM has made good use of this one and is eroding the rights of certain segments of the population little by little. Also, if people are used to giving 10% of their gross income every week, they are more likely to give other things too, such as their children’s minds for brainwashing and most of their spare time for church activities.
For a non-religious example, a study was done where residents in a neighbourhood were asked to display a large sign for a business in their yard. Most of the people refused. A similar group of residents were asked to display a small, unobtrusive sign. Most agreed. Later, this group was asked to display the larger sign and over 3/4 of them consented. This is one case of the slippery slope that has good evidence backing it up.
Use the power of conformity.
Make them suffer.