[ot] cult influence and power, 1988-2018

Undiscussed Groomed for Male Slavery, One Victim of Many gmkarl+brainwashingandfuckingupthehackerslaves at gmail.com
Mon Aug 8 16:17:36 PDT 2022

Preface to the First Paperback Edition

				Since the first publication of this book in the fall of 1988, I
have heard from hundreds of people who have told me about the positive
impact this book has had on their lives. Lawyers, educators, mental
health professionals, and clergy have let me know how valuable it has
been in their work. Families have told me incredible stories of how
reading it led to a series of phone calls, meetings, and, ultimately,
successful interventions with loved ones. Yet nothing gratifies me
more than to hear from individuals who were involved with a
destructive cult for many years, and who felt that reading this book
helped them open a door to freedom.

				For each of you who might be a current or former member of an
organization that is controversial, and to those who are friends or
relatives of someone involved with such a group, I have some special
words of advice:

				**If you are currently a member (or former member) of a group or
organization that has been alleged to be a cult:**

				You may find that it takes a great deal of strength, courage, and
integrity to make the effort to learn about this phenomenon. But as
difficult as it is, keep in mind how much you stand to gain by reading
this book in its entirety. Knowledge is power. You may even discover
that, although the public views your group as a cult, there in fact is
no mind control being used. I have been thanked countless times by
members of unorthodox organizations who were able to, once and for
all, discuss with their families and friends the criteria I outline in
this book. By reading and discussing the material, they can
demonstrate that they _are_ exercising their own free will, and
continue their involvement with a clear conscience.

				If you are questioning the ethics, policies, or practices of your
group, approach this book with an open mind. However, please be
careful about letting other group members know you are reading it, as
this might invoke unwanted attention and disciplinary measures from
the group’s leadership. If it is at all possible to take some time off
and get some distance from other members, I urge you to do so. Find a
place where you have minimal pressure and few distractions.

				I also strongly suggest reading the book at least two times. When
reading it for the first time, do so with the perspective that it is
describing _other_ groups (preferably ones that you do believe are
destructive), and really allow yourself the opportunity to understand
the process of mind control and the characteristics of destructive
cults. Be sure to make notes as you read, writing down everything you
agree with or disagree with, as well as things you want to research
further. Then do all the follow-up research necessary to fully answer
your questions.

				Once you have finished the book, give yourself at least a few days
before reading it again. When you pick it up a second time, read it
objectively, as though it may or may not apply to your own personal
situation. Make a new set of notes on what you agree with, what you
disagree with, and what you need to research further. On completing
this second reading, go find the answers to the issues that are raised
pertaining to your own group. Take some time off (if possible, a
minimum of a few weeks) and go to a restful place, away from other
group members, and gather more information from other sources.
_Remember, if the group is a legitimate, valid organization, it will
stand up to any scrutiny._ It is far better to find out the truth now
than to invest more time, money, and energy, only to discover years
later that the group is very different from its idealized image.

				Truth is stronger than lies, and love is stronger than fear. If
you are involved with a religious organization, keep in mind that God
created us with free will, and that no truly spiritual organization
would _ever_ use deception or mind control, or take away your freedom.

				**If you are a family member, friend, or loved one of someone who
is involved in what you suspect is a destructive cult:**

				It is best to approach the problem in a systematic and methodical
manner. Avoid overreacting and getting hysterical. Don’t jump the gun
and tell the person that you have bought this book or are reading it.
Wait until you and other relevant people have had a chance to read and
get prepared before planning a team Strategic Interactive Approach
(SIA). Be sure to also read my book Freedom of Mind: Helping Loved
Ones Leave Controlling People, Cults and Beliefs, which will offer a
great deal of further information and guidance. Unfortunately, there
have been cases in which people have bought this book and impulsively
given it to cult members. This can backfire badly if anyone from the
cult finds out.

				Most cult groups fear anything and anyone that might cause them to
lose members, and giving a member this book will tip them off that you
are educating yourself. Be careful! Instead of sounding the alarm,
adopt a _curious yet concerned_ posture. Try to avoid confrontations
and ultimatums.

				Read this book as many times as you need to in order to clearly
explain to others the characteristics of mind control, the criteria of
a destructive cult, and the basics of cult psychology. The BITE model
in Chapter 4 will be a particularly valuable tool.

				Get as many concerned friends and relatives involved as you can. A
strong first step will be for them to read this book, too. If everyone
is prepared, they will not be caught off guard.

				Although this book is meant as a resource, there is no substitute
for professional advice geared to your own unique situation. Do not
hesitate to seek such help from people who are qualified and informed.
I am now developing programs to train mental health professionals,
former cult members, and activists on mind control, undue influence,
and cult psychology. Also please consult the wealth of free
interviews, talks, workshops, and other resources on the
[freedomofmind.com] website.

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