1. The charismatic leader (Ole Nydahl) surrounded by groupies and Ole Clones. This is known as a cult of personality. The idolisation of Ole Nydahl is extreme. He also has no authentic credentials, and is not qualified to hold the title of Lama. Ole only started using the title of Lama a few years after the 16th Karmapa's death, while claiming that the 16th Karmapa granted him such a title.
2. The manipulation of information. Books Ole Nydahl doesn't agree with or are critical of him are banned from the centres. Members are also discouraged from seeking teachings from any other source.
3. Abuse of members lower in the hierarchy by those higher up. This emotional (and sometimes physical) abuse is explained away as 'purification' and members are told it is simply their karma.
4. Questions or criticisms from members are dismissed and suppressed. The member is then made to feel guilty and told it is their fault. They are called 'spiritually weak' or have 'ego problems'.
5. Diamond Way has it's own words and language, to separate members from the public. Words are also given new meanings. New members are also given fancy new Tibetan names to make them feel important and separate them from their old life.
6. There is one rule for those lower in the hierarchy, and another for those at the top. For instance, Diamond Way teaches that adultery is wrong (in common with authentic Buddhism), but at the same time, Ole Nydahl is known to have had affairs with several of his students, and had a mistress called Caty Hartung as well as his wife, Hannah.
7. The true beliefs of the group are kept secret from members until they are sufficiently brainwashed, and before that are lied to, just as Diamond Way lies to the public about it's true beliefs. Members only get to the really weird stuff once they get higher up in the hierarchy. Those higher up in this heirachy lie to both those lower down and to the public at large about their true beliefs. Their excuse for this is to simply say people are "not ready". (sounds like not sufficiently brainwashed to me!)
8. Everything in Diamond Way has a price, and the money flows to the top of the hierarchy. There is also huge pressure to donate money, whether you can afford it or not. Members are also pressured to buy photos of Ole Nydahl, tickets to his lectures, and books. Members are milked for everything they have, while Ole Nydahl lives a life of luxury, flying round the world and having everything paid for him.
9. Diamond Way uses brainwashing techniques. Their 'meditation' rituals are in fact more like self-hypnotism, and are intended to increase suggestibility and slowly remove the members from reality and critical thinking.
10. Former members are harassed, slandered and told to shut up about their experiences. I have had death threats, abusive e-mails and phone calls etc calling me "spiritually weak", "mentally ill", and "a criminal" among other things. Calling me a criminal is particularly ironic considering Ole Nydahl himself spent time in prison for drug smuggling and dealing. I am just glad I never signed up to the cult's magazine despite pressure to do so, or they would have had my home address too!