[ot] cult influence and power, 1988-2018

Undiscussed Groomed for Male Slavery, One Victim of Many gmkarl+brainwashingandfuckingupthehackerslaves at gmail.com
Fri Oct 14 06:32:27 PDT 2022

Chapter 11–Strategies for Recovery

				People can leave a mind control group in any of three basic ways:
they walk out; they are kicked out (often in a very burned-out
condition, both psychologically and physically); or they are counseled

				Although they are all fortunate to leave their cults, adjusting to
life in the real world can be extremely difficult for them. If they
don’t get good information, support and counseling after they leave,
the cult phobias they carry with them can turn some people into
psychological “time bombs.” Also, many cult members have lived for so
long without any kind of normal work or social life that the process
of readjustment to adult life is an uphill climb.

				As a result, some people leave cults only to return again and
again, because they miss family and friends who are still involved,
but who were ordered to shun them. While such people are in the
minority, they demonstrate the vulnerability of people who have left a
mind control environment.

				Walk Outs

				Without a doubt the largest number of former members falls into
the first category, the walk outs. These are the people who have
managed to physically remove themselves from the cult, but have
received no counseling about cult mind control. I occasionally meet
them socially and find that some of them, even years after the cult
involvement, are still dealing with the problems of mind control

				For example, I once met a woman at a dinner party who had “walked
out” of the Moonies. During our conversation, she remarked that even
though she had been happily married for more than six years, she was
deeply afraid of having children. She told me that she couldn’t figure
this out at all, because she had wanted to have children ever since
she was a little girl. Now she was in her early thirties and felt she
wanted children, but she still couldn’t get over her fear.

				As we talked, I learned that she had been recruited into the
Moonies in 1969—more than 12 years earlier—and had stayed in the group
for only three months.

				“When they started making too many demands on me, I left,” she
told me. It was clear that she had brushed off her encounter as simply
a close call.

				“Did it ever occur to you that your fear of having children might
be related to your experience in the Moonies?” I asked.

				She looked puzzled. “What do you mean?”

				“Do you remember ever being told anything about having children
when you were in the Moonies?”

				She rolled her head up slightly, as if her eyes were scanning the
ceiling. After a few moments, her face became flushed and she

				“Yes! I do remember something!” To my surprise, she took hold of
my shoulders and shook me back and forth. “I remember being told that
if anyone ever betrayed the Messiah and left the movement, their
children would be stillborn!”[178]

				Her excitement at remembering the source of her fear of having
children was tremendous, and I couldn’t help but share it. It seemed
as though we could hear the psychological chains that had been locking
her mind fall to the floor.

				At that point, I realized that I had to explain phobia
indoctrination to her. I told her that even though she had been
involved with the Moonies for only a few months, her recruiters and
trainers had successfully implanted a phobia of giving birth to a dead
child in her unconscious mind.

				“Even though I don’t believe in Moon anymore?” she asked.

				“The mind is capable of learning new information and retaining it
forever,” I said. “This goes for harmful things as well as helpful
things. You may have thought that you were finished with the Moonies
when you walked out the door, but it has taken you 12 years to locate
and eliminate that fear bomb they put inside your mind.”

				Of course, it is rare to have a conversation with a former cult
member like this—a social situation at a friend’s house which suddenly
leads to a breakthrough about phobia indoctrination. Yet, a great
number of people, just like this woman, are somehow coping with the
damaging aftereffects of undue influence. Their problems are often
made worse by the fact that many mental health professionals are not
knowledgeable about mind control and do not know how to effectively
help people suffering from its lingering consequences.

				People may be able to escape the cult if they are exposed to too
much of the inner doctrine before they are ready to swallow it. For
example, when one woman I was recruiting found out that Moon was soon
going to assign her a husband, it so infuriated her that she stormed
out. A man I was recruiting discovered that we believed Moon was the
Messiah before we had had enough time to prepare him for that
conclusion.[179] He turned and walked out.

				Other people leave when they become victims of internal politics
or personality conflicts. For example, many people get fed up and exit
because they can’t relate to or readily follow their immediate
superior. Long-term members often walk out when they feel that group
policy is not being fairly and uniformly applied, or if there is a
struggle for power.

				Over the years I have met a large number of people who have walked
out of their group because they just couldn’t stand it anymore, yet
they still believed in the leader. There are thousands of ex-Moonies
who still believe that Moon is the Messiah, but just can’t tolerate
the way the cult is run. In their minds they are waiting for the day
that the group reforms its policies, so they can return. They do not
understand that the group is structured and run the way it is
_because_ of Moon. The same pattern applies to ex-Scientologists who
leave the group but who still think Ron Hubbard was a genius and that
the “technology” works. These people call themselves “independents” or
members of the “Free Zone.” If they still believe Hubbard was a great
humanitarian and discovered how to be “free”, they are still suffering
from undue influence.

				Over the decades, I’ve met thousands of people who were born into
cults, but walked out. Even as children, some of them could never
swallow the weird belief system, particularly if they went to public
school and had positive relationships with grandparents, aunts,
uncles, cousins, teachers, coaches, and other caring people.

				Kick Outs

				I’ve encountered hundreds of people who were “kicked out” of their
mind control groups because they bucked authority and asked too many
questions. Others were abused to such an extent that they were damaged
and no longer productive for the cult. Still others developed serious
physical or psychological problems that cost too much money to be
treated. They became a liability to their group.

				People who have been kicked out are almost always in worse shape
than people who walk out or have been counseled out. They feel
rejected by the group and its members. In the case of religious cults,
they also feel rejected by God Himself. Many of them devoted their
lives to their cults, turning over their money and property. They were
told that the group was now their family, and believed that it would
take care of them for the rest of their lives. Then, years later, they
were told that they were not living up to the group’s standards and
would have to leave. These people, phobic toward the outside world,
felt cast into utter darkness.

				For many kick outs, suicide seems a realistic alternative to their
suffering.[180] No one knows how many people have committed suicide
because of mind control. I personally knew of a number of people who
killed themselves because of their cult involvement. Research should
be done, as this is a major public health issue.

				Those who unsuccessfully attempt suicide are typically given a
psychiatric evaluation. Many are incorrectly diagnosed as having
schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder or
borderline personality disorder. Of course, some people do have these
disorders, but my experience is that cults avoid recruiting people who
cannot be controlled and rendered dependent and obedient, so most are
suffering acute psychosis brought on by mind control.

				Uninformed mental health professionals can hardly be blamed for
this. How else could they diagnose a person who screams for Satan to
come out of them? How could they know, unless they investigate, that
the person had been doing silent, high-speed chanting for hours, and
that it was causing them to be so spaced out that they appeared

				One man I worked with was kicked out of a cult after his father
threatened the group’s guru with lawsuits and other forms of exposure.
The young man had been programmed for six years to believe that
leaving the guru meant instant insanity. After he left, he (surprise!)
went crazy. His parents took him to a psychiatric hospital, where the
doctors diagnosed him with schizophrenia. The young man interpreted
this diagnosis as proof that his leader was right: anyone who leaves
the guru _does_ go crazy.

				In the hospital, he started to pound his head vigorously against
the wall. He was put in a straightjacket and put under constant
surveillance. But no one asked him why he was behaving in this way.

				I learned that, during his years in the cult, on a visit to India,
he had been shown the rock the guru had supposedly banged his head
against until (as the young man explained to me), “he managed to reach
gross consciousness.” In his effort to replicate his guru’s spiritual
path, the young man nearly killed himself. To top it all off, this
only convinced the doctors that he had schizoaffective disorder or was

				Only when I began to work with him did he begin to undo his cult
conditioning, and how he reinforced that conditioning whenever he
internally repeated cult jargon, followed cult practices or thought
about his cult leader’s teaching uncritically.

				This unfortunate man also struggled with the years of negative
“help” he had received from mental health professionals while in
“treatment.” Some of his doctors actually told him that his
involvement with the group was one of the healthier things he had done
in his life. One caseworker even encouraged him to read cult
literature. Meanwhile, he was heavily medicated and was told daily
that he was a schizophrenic.

				One occult-group ex-member I worked with was convinced that her
spiritual body was disintegrating and that she was dying. She suffered
tremendous anxiety attacks, particularly in the middle of the night,
and felt pains in her chest. She had been tested by doctors for every
conceivable problem, and it was determined that the difficulty was all
“in her mind.” She had been programmed by the group to self-destruct
if she ever left it. Once she was out, that was exactly what started
to happen—until she began to learn about cults and mind control.

				When people who have walked out or have been kicked out are not
able to receive specialized counseling, their suffering is usually
prolonged. Still, many manage, with the help of family and friends, to
pick up the pieces and move forward with their lives. However, if
these people never come to understand mind control and how it was used
to recruit and indoctrinate them, in my opinion, they will never be
able to live as full a life as they might. These people may have
temporarily managed to put their cult experience on a shelf and forget
about it. At some point, though, it could burst back into their lives.

				Rick was one of these people. He walked out of the Children of God
with his wife and three kids after six years. Five years later, a
piece of cult literature turned up in his mailbox. All his cult
indoctrination was triggered by this one letter from the leader. His
mind started racing out of control. A voice in his head told him to go
upstairs and choke his children.

				Fortunately, Rick got help and was able to keep his children safe.
Today, he is a successful computer consultant.

				Efforts to sensitize and train mental health professionals are
much needed. I was invited to do a program for psychiatrist Judith
Herman, who is one of the leading trauma experts and the author of the
seminal book _Trauma and Recovery_. A two-hour cults course was added
to her Trauma curriculum and I was able to do this, in 2014. I was
grateful that a woman I’d had the good fortune to work with was
willing to share her 11-year experience with mental health
practitioners. Her prior caregivers did not realize that her 13-year
involvement with the Bible cult International Churches of Christ was
at the root of her depression and suicidal impulses. Laura later did a
Dr. Drew[181] podcast on the issue of the need for mental health
professionals to learn how to correctly identify and help victims of
mind control. A video of my presentation and a link to the Dr. Drew
podcast can be found on the Freedom of Mind website,

				Counseled Outs

				People who had had assistance are the smallest group of
ex-members. Most people who are counseled out of cults are able to
find the help and information they need. However, some are still
carrying around cult-related psychological baggage. Just because a
person has been out of a group for years, this does not mean that all
of their issues are resolved. This is particularly true of those who
were deprogrammed. Some deprogramees report ongoing PTSD symptoms from
the deprogramming itself. While I am eternally grateful that my family
deprogrammed me, I have needed to do much self healing and also have
needed to turn to experts for support. Those who were exit-counseled
or experienced some voluntary form of intervention do much better.
However, it takes time and good support to recover fully. If the
person’s family and friends did not understand mind control and cult
psychology it undermines a smooth recovery. Some people are encouraged
way too fast to find a job or embark on a career. A supportive
cult-aware therapist can be very helpful.

				Much more is now known about undue influence and cults than ever
before. Today there are also many more former cult members who have
become professional cult counselors.

				Unfortunately, however, those are not always the professionals to
whom ex-members turn. Often they spend many frustrating years working
with therapists who know little or nothing about mind control. It is
unethical for a therapist who is not trained in addictions to be in
charge of treating someone with an addiction. Similarly, an
otherwise-talented therapist, who is largely clueless about undue
influence, should not counsel ex-cult members.

				Therapists need to understand that it is essential to first make
an accurate diagnosis by doing a thorough interview. Then the client
should be referred to a professional with the proper training and
experience. After all, it is the therapist’s obligation to get proper
help for a client.

				Psychological Problems Of Ex-Cult Members

				Former cult members report a variety of psychological difficulties
after they leave.

				The most common is _depression_, particularly during the first few
months after leaving. It is difficult to describe the pain of
realizing that you have been lied to and mentally enslaved—that your
dream was really a nightmare. Many people who leave after decades of
involvement have to face the lost years of missed opportunities. Some
have no spouse or partner, no children, no education, no relationships
with relatives, and no friends.

				Many ex-cult members describe their experience with a cult as if
they had fallen deeply in love, and given every ounce of their love,
trust and commitment to someone, only to find out that the person was
a false lover and was just using them. The pain and the sense of
betrayal is enormous.

				Others describe the realization in more graphic terms: feeling as
though they had been spiritually and psychologically raped. The sense
of personal violation is indescribable. I myself came to realize that
all of the love and devotion I felt towards Sun Myung Moon and Hak Ja
Han as my “True Parents” was totally one-sided. I realized after I
left that they didn’t care about me personally at all. Instead, I was
automatically labeled “Satanic” and a traitor, and shunned.[182] When
people are depressed, they tend to only see the bad side of things.
Their pain can be so great that it blots out any hope of a positive
future. It is essential that former members acknowledge and work
through their pain, and go through the necessary grieving period.

				Two realizations seem to help ex-cult members most: first, that
some positive things came out of their involvement, and, second, that
they now are (or can be) much stronger because of their experiences.
It can also help to encourage them to put their experience in a
manageable and hopeful perspective. There are almost always examples
of people whose experience was much worse than their own, and who were
able to thrive after exiting.

				Another common problem is an overwhelming tendency toward
_continued dependence_ (learned helplessness) on others for direction
and authority. In groups where members lived communally, most life
decisions were made by leaders. Members were encouraged to be selfless
and obedient. This form of dependency creates low self-esteem and
undermines the healthy desire and ability for personal development.

				When I first left the Moonies, I didn’t seem to have that
difficulty. My deprogrammers had told my parents that they should
expect that I would have trouble making decisions. My parents were
quite confused when we went out to eat, because I easily knew what I
wanted. They told me later that they thought, in some twisted way,
that this meant that I hadn’t been deprogrammed. What they hadn’t
taken into account was that I had not been a rank-and-file member. I
had been a leader and was used to making certain kinds of decisions
for myself, as well as for others. Day-to-day decisions were easy for
me; bigger decisions, like which college to choose, were more

				Like most skills, decision-making becomes easier with practice. In
time, people learn how to resume control over their lives. This
process can be speeded up by the gentle but firm insistence by family
members and friends that ex-members make up their own mind about what
they want to eat or do. By bolstering the ex-member’s self-esteem and
confidence, the dependency problem is usually overcome.

				Floating: Dealing With The Cult Identity After Leaving

				A more difficult problem is a phenomenon known as _floating_.[183]
The former cult member suddenly starts to mentally float back in time
to the days of their group involvement, and starts to think from
within their former identity. The experience is triggered when the
ex-group member sees, hears or feels some stimulus that was part of
their conditioning process. This can briefly jolt them back into the
cult mindset. Here is an example.

				Margot, a 19-year-old college student, was recruited into
Lifespring during a summer job in 1987. Lifespring is a Large Group
Awareness Training. She completed the basic course and was one weekend
away from completing the leadership training course. Margot’s mother,
an ordained Methodist minister, saw some personality changes in her
daughter, and was concerned enough to borrow money to initiate a
rescue effort. The effort was successful, and Margot soon broke from
the group. (As part of an investigation of Lifespring, ABC’s 20/20
interviewed psychiatrist and cult expert Dr. John Clark of Harvard
Medical School. Although Lifespring insists otherwise, Dr. Clark
stated that Lifespring does, in his opinion, practice mind

				For Margot, one of the biggest problems after the intervention was
hearing music come on the radio, including Steve Winwood’s “Higher
Love,” and having flashbacks of the training. Groups such as
Lifespring like to use popular music as part of their indoctrination
for that very reason. It creates a strong association in the
individual’s unconscious, which without proper counseling can take
months, sometimes years, to overcome. Music is used by many cults for
indoctrination, because it forms a strong anchor for emotional states
via memory.

				This stimulus-response mechanism that caused the flashback, or
“floating,” can be a significant problem for former members. This
experience is triggered when a former member sees, hears or feels some
external or internal stimulus, which was part of the conditioning
process. This can briefly jolt them back into the cult mindset.

				For the first year after I left the Moonies, every time I heard
the word _moon_, I would think, _Father_, and remember sitting at
Moon’s feet. Another example occurred about a month after I left the
group. As I was driving to a friend’s house, I had the thought, _This
would be an excellent fundraising area!_ I had to tell myself that I
was no longer in the Moonies

Endnotes for Chapter 11
				178. Cf. “Relationship Between Men and Women,” Master Speaks (May
20, 1973), 2. Although this is a dramatic example of the things
members are told by the Moonies, I have heard many similar tales from
				179. Gary Scharff, “Autobiography of a Former Moonie,” Cultic
Studies Journal (1986). Vol. 2, No. 2, 254.
				180. See Marcia R. Rudin, “The Cult Phenomenon: Fad or Fact?” New
York University Review of Law and Social Change (1979-80). Vol. IX,
No. 1, 31-32.
				181. Dr. Drew’s podcast with Steve Hassan and former 15 year ICC
member is at: https://freedomofmind.com//Media/videos.php
				182. See Steve Kemperman, Lord of the Second Advent (Ventura,
California: Regal Books, 1981), 87.
				183. Floating has also been linked to “Post Traumatic Stress
Disorder,” from which many Vietnam veterans suffer.
				184.Geraldo Rivera, “Lifespring Part 2,” ABC’s “20/20” (Nov 6, 1980).
				185. Decreeing is used by only one group that I am familiar with:
Elizabeth Claire Prophet’s Church Universal and Triumphant. It is a
high-speed recitation of the group’s “prayers.” It is done so fast
that anyone listening will not understand what a member is saying. In
my opinion, it is a highly effective technique for trance induction
and thought-stopping.
				186. During my time in the Moonies, I had personally recruited
fourteen people and influenced hundreds of people to join.
				187. Francine Jeane Daner, The American Children of Krishna: A
Study of the Hare Krishna Movement (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and
Winston, 1976).Hillary Johnson, “Children of Harsh Bliss: In a West
Virginia Commune, An Extraordinary Look at Life and Love Among the
Krishnas,” Life Magazine (April 1980).Eric Harrison, “Crimes Among the
Krishnas: The world wouldn’t listen to Stephen Bryant’s charges
against his religion’s leaders, until he was murdered,” The
Philadelphia Inquirer Magazine (April 5, 1987).
				188. See 3HO/Sikh Dharma Publication, Beads of Truth, Preuss Road,
Los Angeles, California.
				189. Richard Behar, “The Prophet and Profits of Scientology.”
Forbes Magazine (October 27th, 1986).
				190. Tony Ortega wrote a wonderful book entitled, The Unbreakable
Miss Lovely (Silvertail Books, 2015) about Paulette Cooper and
Scientology’s harassment of this pioneering writer. I became friends
with Paulette in 1976 when I first exited the Moonies and was declared
an SP. I have a 2013 video interview with her on my web site,
				191. Flo Conway and Jim Siegelman, Snapping (New York: Dell
Publishing Co., 1978), 249. “Penthouse Interview: L. Ron Hubbard, Jr.”
Penthouse (June 1983), 112.
				192. Jim Healey, Sharry Ricchiardi, and D. Vance Hawthorne, “ISU
Bible Study Group: Wonderful or a Cult?” Desmoines Sunday Register
(March 9, 1980), 1B.Michelle M. Bell, “I think I was Brainwashed:
Religious Group Criticized as Cult-like is now al KSU,” Daily Kent
Stater (Dec 3, 1982), 1.

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