People have their own reasons to join cult of any sort. A lot of such groups are sometimes viewed as controversial at best, while some others are considered illegal and dangerous.
From the outside, nearly all cults have one thing in common: they promote sense of community and belonging among members although at the same time the rules and norms within the groups can be entirely different from those observed in a typical modern society.
The term “cult” itself has always been associated with negative connotations from strange to detached, from exclusive to downright radical.
Regardless of the cults, the concept of unity is almost always presented as their core value, yet from time to time you have heard news and stories how the claim couldn’t be farther from the truth.
A lot of them were founded only to benefit the founders plus a select few others sitting up high in the hierarchy.
Over the years, more than a handful of celebrities have come forward and spoken about their unfortunate upbringing inside cults.
Even Hollywood’s big names were once dragged into spending their childhood among devotees of unpleasant (and sometimes terrifying) communities.
10 Winona Ryder
Earning her Golden Globe Award and two Oscar nominations for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the 1993 film The Age of Innocence, Winona Ryder suddenly became one of Hollywood’s greats.
Long before the stardom status came, however, she lived deep inside the “’Rainbow Family Commune of Living” based in Mendocino, California.
Ryder and her family (along with seven others) experienced life without electricity, music, or TV on a 300-acre of land.
She spent most of her time reading and only developed an interest in acting after her mother covertly showed a film projected to a screen in a barn.
It must have been not bad at all, because Ryder herself said the whole experience was incredible.
9 Christopher Owens
Indie musician Christopher Owens was born into religious cult called Children of God.
As part of the religious journey, he and his family had to travel around Asia and Europe. He managed to detach himself from the cult and found redemption in music.
Owens escaped to Texas where his sister lived after leaving the church many years before.
It was there that he discovered music, one of many simple innocent pleasures that had been deprived from his life before.
In an interview with the Guardian, he likened living in the cult to being raised in the Taliban.
8 Emily Schromm
One of The Real World: DC cast members, Emily Schromm, opened up about her past experience of being a member of a fundamentalist Christian cult in Columbia, Missouri.
She described the cult as an oppressive religion, from which she eventually broke free.
Schromm engaged in sport activities not only to keep her in great shape but also ease her way into more secular society.
An athletic tomboy, the reality TV star now enjoys extreme sports including CrossFit and identifies as bisexual.
7 Joaquin Phoenix
Along with his family, Joaquin Phoenix had an unconventional life (to say the least) in the past with the Children of God religious cult.
The family moved multiple times to Venezuela, Florida, and eventually Hollywood
Until Phoenix was around three years old, his family were members of the cult helmed by preacher David Berg, who would later become notorious for accusations of leading a cult that promoted sexual abuse on women and children.
Joaquin Phoenix was not the only kid who spent early childhood in the cult.
Rose McGowan shared the same unfortunate experience.