I've learned from working with individuals, couples and families that in some relational systems such as partnerships, marriages, teacher-student, family, groups, corporations and movements (political, "spiritual"/ "religious" or otherwise) similar dynamics of deception, manipulation, unequal power and disregard of personal rights and autonomy exists. A term that describes this type of process is Coercive Influence or Coercive Control. Another popular term is "Gaslighting".
Tactics gaslighters use are flattery, promises, gifts, lying, denying, exploiting strengths and vulnerabilities, positive reinforcement alternating with abuse, projection ("You're cheating"), creating "us" vs. "them" strategies ("Your family is jealous of me and lying -- stop seeing them" "Those people are criminals and evil")
I've come across an important article, "11 Warning Signs of Gaslighting " (click here).
Coercive manipulation can occur in any relationship -- intimate, friendship, work or student-related, high-demand group, or otherwise. The unaware "victim" or target in an abusive system is lured in, recruited or seduced by a perpetrator with narcissistic and anti-social or sociopathic traits in a step by step process of indoctrination that is intended to changes her beliefs and weaken her self-worth. An adult can be promised a better quality of life, enduring love, an easy solution to life's complex problems, a promise to actualize her dreams. Her (although it can be "his") strengths and vulnerabilities are exploited, she becomes more dependent emotionally and financially. The situation gradually changes with the perpetrator's increasing demands and control. Within the abusive system, the abuser/perpetrator takes center stage and dominates with his or her rules and beliefs. A child in such a system may become "parentified" in role-reversal to take care of the parent's needs. It can be dangerous to assert personal rights. Differentiation, self-autonomy and self-agency are not tolerated or diminished. The person thought to be a benign leader or partner exhibits Jekyll and Hyde characteristics with varying degrees of harm.
The abuser/perpetrator is good at what he does so beware! Over time, anyone caught in the abusive system of coercive influence and control rationalizes, minimizes, or denies the perpetrator's dangerous behavior. At the same time, he/she loses a sense of self and awareness of personal rights. She internalizes inaccurate, self-limiting beliefs from what the abuser and others caught in her system declare is "right" or "True". Guilt and fear-induction is used to keep the victim in the abusive system.
People who psychologically and physically leave or in some cases, distance themselves from gaslighters, corrupt leaders, abusive partners or parents are courageous in seeking to establish a life of one's own. This is possible through gaining insight about what they were involved in, identifying and disconfirming internalized, deeply held inaccurate beliefs, becoming educated about gaslighting, coercive influence and control, learning more adaptive coping skills (communication, boundaries, self-care, etc.) Survivors begin to trust themselves again and exert their personal rights in healthier systems.