Getting back to the point at hand.
The guy I met was unlike the rest, because he always had a smile on his face, had genuine enthusiasm for life, and above all else, ambition. We gravitated towards each other, because we were so different from the rest and had expectations of making a great life for ourselves. He eventually brought up an analogy when we were hanging out, and I had no idea how loaded (set up for an affirmative response) it truly was. He asked me, "If you had to shovel shit for 3 years and didn't paid, would you do it if you were paid $250,000 a year after that for the rest of your life." My immediate thought was yes, and saw the parallels of that with going to college, because that to me was like shoveling shit and hoping to get a $50,000 plus career starting out. This is when the coffee meetings began to occur and our friendship went into a weird cross section of creepy personal information mixed with business dreams.
He made me read a book from Robert Kiyosaki called Businesses of the 21st Century, and asked if I had ever heard of this BILLIONAIRE before. I said no, because 1. He is not a billionaire, and 2. Anyone outside of Amway or other MLM's wouldn't know about this fly.
After reading the book, we met again and I was a little shaken. I didn't learn anything business related from the book, and his writing was atrocious. He told me I would understand more once we went to see a meeting where Robert's tools were implemented. We ended up going to a weird church in the middle of nowhere and saw Amway diamond Mike Carrol (to preface this Mike Carrol is completely uneducated and worthless).
We went to the meeting and Mike Carrol did an ego massage that was surrounded with cheers as everyone rejoiced at his wonderful success and lifestyle. I could've given two shits...I was here to learn how to make money. He finally got to the business plan in the last 10 minutes of the 2 hour meeting and it consisted of circles and purchasing from your store. I was more confused than ever and was sure I was witnessing a pyramid scheme. The products were completely unnecessary and the sole source of income generation was recruiting 12 circles and then teaching them to each recruit 12 circles...clearly not mathematically probable and eventually an impossibility. I have to go back for a moment and mention that he paid cash supposedly for everything, but at the end he talked about the Amway credit card...clearly nobody else noticed a very big issue. He reiterated the pyramid idea by suggesting he gets paid every time one of his down line makes a "shwipee" with their credit card...clearly he isn't moving any product they are just unlucky enough to be below him.
I told my friend I still don't understand the business, and he said how could you not understand...that was it. I began to feel slimy and used...but I didn't stop there. He encouraged me to go to a meeting at his house.
I wish I could say the story ended there, but it doesn't...I did end up attending an FED last October, but I won't go into details about that because this post has already gotten massively long.
Coming full circle...the reason why I think it is a cult as well is, A. The ridiculous need for business attire, B. The bizarre literature they have you read and the edification of people beyond their actual value, C. The lack of a coherent business plan, and the inability to distinguish numbers, and D. The fact that they use diversion tactics to answer meaningful questions, and or not answer them all but rather send you to a different meeting or a different person.