Humans control livestock by placing a metal ring in an animal’s nose. This makes it possible for the human to control a possibly much larger animal with very little effort. Since the ring is in a sensitive part of the animal’s anatomy very little effort on the part of the human can cause a huge amount of pain in the animal. A single human can use the ring to highjack the animal’s nervous system — chiefly its desire to avoid pain — and ultimately lead it to slaughter.
Humans control other humans by an analogous technology. Manipulators take a sensitive part of human psychology — the desire to be safe, or to be loved or taken care of — and graft an easily manipulatable tool onto it. So, for example, a religious leader might get his followers to call him “father”. This grafts a sensitive part of psychology, analogous to the pig’s nose, in this case the need to have a powerful, loving presence care for us when we are helpless or confused, onto a hard piece of manipulatable thought — this particular religious leader is to be called “father”. Once the graft is successful the religious leader can use the hook to drag his followers anywhere. So, for example, he could say, or more likely imply, they can’t ask questions about his finances, because you don’t ask questions about your father’s finances.
Religious, political and business leaders all obviously try to get their hooks in people, so they can control a lot of people with little effort. On the more intimate, micro-level, romantic partners try to get their hooks in you too. The message of the relationship is: if you leave me, if you disappoint me, if you question me I will make you feel abandoned, unworthy, and unloved.
Some say that is fine as long as your hooks are in them as well. Myself, I’m an optimist and think there must be a better way. So personally I say whether they are to be found in an office, a temple, or the bed next to you: don’t let them get their hooks in you.