How does the cult of Donald Trump differ from the cult of Democracy? The cult of Capitalism and other constrictions could also be added to the initial question.
As might be suspected, a cult’s dynamic is basically the same regardless of its central focus. This would include the cults of Family and Friends.
At stake is whether participation in a cult can be avoided (probably not) and how an awareness of our cultic participation might shift enough to allow a next insight/revelation into life and the lives with whom we are in cahoots.
One model of breaking beyond the categories of a particular cult is an investigation of wilderness and loneliness. A cult has a difficult time with any wild space beyond its borders. It declares everything to be within its constructs. Cults, likewise, require standardized and self-confirming behavior of meeting specific behavioral requirements. If anyone steps beyond these rituals, it is as if they had been exiled in place. Shunning is powerful within a cult and is a basic control mechanism. Fear of having no context, no place, rises to the same stunned experience as attempting to recognize the possibility of there being no weather (as in, even a tornado is better than no weather at all).
This might be the place to look at one way to open a window on cultish behavior we participate in—“We celebrate both our commonalities and differences, because if we had nothing in common we could not communicate, and if we had everything in common, we would have nothing to say.” (Rabbi Jonathan Sacks to Pope Benedict XVI)