Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: Ziggy ()
Date: May 23, 2011 11:13PM

Because of the cult atmosphere I have been subjected to, alarms started going off in a short period of time in terms of uncanny behavior of cult members.
So, I want to be fully aware of mind control in the future if I ever have to deal with such people. As I understand it, the mind can be tricked without a person knowing the signs, and sometimes it is too late.

Any one know of any good books on Mind Control, or Mental Hypnosis?

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: May 23, 2011 11:21PM

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: May 24, 2011 05:18PM

Adam Curtis made a very informative documentary, 'The Century of the Self' inspired by a book by the American historian, Stuart Ewen, "PR! A Social History of Spin" which follows the growth of mind manipulation and its general effects on the masses in the 20th century.

Its long, 4 one hour episodes, but available on the web and well worth watching.


Curtis has begun screening a new update, 'All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace', again a series of 4 one hour episodes on BBC2. I've only seen the first so far but it promises to be as historically informative about the mechanics of mass persuasion as the earlier documentary.
Its available to view in weekly episodes on BBC iplayer for the next couple of months and will undoubtedly then be posted to the web:


Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: May 24, 2011 10:40PM

Just my opinion here.

I think there can be an ethical quandry in disclosing too much information about how covert influence is done. If someone were to publish actual mechanics of covert influence, that would put that information straight into the hands of unscrupulous operators and make them even better at what they are already doing.

I sometimes dread that some of them actually come and read our discussions so as to better refine their methods.

Look what happened when Bandler and Grinder figured out the mechanics of how Ericksonian trance induction works.

Erickson was a medical hypnotist, bound by the ethics of medicine. He wanted people to regain all the autonomy they were capable of, so they would not need to see him for the rest of their lives. Erickson never that his methods be used on a large scale to sell people stuff they dont need, or to inflame their dependency upon gurus or seminar trainers or sales people.

And Erickson only worked with people who knew he was going to utilize trance.

Reading Margaret Singer and Cialdini will be very helpful.

Again, here is my idiosyncratic list of warning signs. It in no way reflects the opinion of Ross Institute.

Many cults (though not all of them) tend to exalt experience at the expense of reason and facts. If you offer some facts and the person replies 'Well that wasnt my experience'--run.

(However some cults have been based on an appearance of rigorous intellectualism. The factor that runs through all is authoritarianism)

1) Begin by recognizing that any person, no matter how intelligent or well educated, no matter how socially sophisticated, will have vulnerable moments. We are human. We are social. We are influenced by the company we keep. If we are scared, ill, bereaved and disoriented, we will look adult but regress to the level of young children who need protection. Anyone can exploit us if fate lands us in such a situation. Think of how you felt when someone you love died. Or if you got shocking news of some kind.

A side note. Our minds are embodied. Put enough pressure on a human body and we can be worn down. And it doesnt take waterboarding to accomplish this. If you fantasize that you are too smart or too strong to be broken and influenced, you are actually that much more vulnerable to a con.

2) Be aware that some venues that should be safe are being abused as points of recruitment for junk.

I am very sorry to report that Byron Katie and Eckhart Tolle are mentioned a lot in 12 step groups. If you happen to be a member of a 12 Step group, keep in mind that according to the traditions, one should only use 12 Step literature, one must avoid controversy of religions or causes. Anyone who shows up at your 12 step meeting and tries to get you to go see their guru or go to a non 12 step seminar is violating the Traditions of the 12 Step scene.

I say this because I shared some sensitive material at an Alanon meeting and was in tears. Afterward a woman pounced on me trying to get me to go to a Byron Katie talk. I regret now that I was so very polite to her. She was using my shaky moment as an opportunity to proslytize for BK.

3) Something never comes from nothing. Everything has a history. Most of us are nervous about speaking in public. It takes training, long patient training and practice, to learn how to market oneself and how to impress total strangers and work a room. So ask yourself where this operator learned to do this. Who taught him or her.

No one is born knowing how to run seminars or multiday workshops. Where did the person learn to do this.

It costs money to print posters and get web sites up and running. It costs big money to rent bill boards and the kind of advertising one sees on the sides of busses. Where did that money come from??

If a glossy multicolor poster advertises free workshops---who paid for that poster? At what point will your participation no longer be for free, eh?

4) Someone who advertises proficiency in a multitude of disciplines, each of which would by itself take a lifetime to master--be alert. Someone who says they do yoga, sufism, advaita, Kabbalah, shamanic trance--thats too much stuff for any one person to master in its entirety.

5) Someone who is both a therapist and has a schedule as a retreat leader--if they are running around all over the country doing frequent retreats, they wont have the time to be steadily present in a way that is needed for a long term therapeutic relationship. Two, someone with a heavy schedule as a retreat leader will have a very hard time staying current with developments in psychotherapy. A real therapist works hard to stay up to date in Continuing Education.

7) Anyone who considers professional boundaries to be oppressive and thinks clients and patients should be equals and be friends--that person isnt willing to take full responslibity for the actual POWER of being a therapist.

8) If your attempts to ask about power issues financial transparency and the possiblity of abuse meet with accusations of your being negative--get out. This is a sign of being in a social setting where there is no social support for disciples and all the excuses go toward justifying whatever the powerholders do. Its dangerous turf and one needs to get away, fast.

9) If anyone uses the term crazy wisdom, run. Go look up the careers of Adi Da and Chogyam Trungpa.

10) Watch for the hype factor. If people seem childishly invested in the marvellous personality and public persona of a leader, even if its someone who is a social justice activist--be careful.

11) If that person keeps telling certain Big Stories again and again, and the crowd just eats it up--watch out. If people get hysterical and accuse you of cynicism, of being a hater, or of being an atheist if you question the glorious personality, the story, the achievements of the Great Person--watch out.

Other precautions

Precautions for Attending MultiDay Events (not just the one discussed here)

Only only go to an event, especially a multiday event, in your own car. Dont surrender your car keys or cell phone. If you need coffee to function, bring caffiene tablets and some protein powder in case they try to stick you on a low protein no-caffiene diet. A few energy bars up the sleeve are always good.

Dont surrender your car keys. Next, despite this being scorned as selfish and un Green, dont have anyone carpool with you. Why? Because if you decide you want to leave, if you have buddies who rely on you for transportation and they want to stay, you'll be stranded.

Tell them to send you the paperwork you will have to sign as a condition of participating. This can be sent online via a pdf file.

What you want to know before you send payment is whether you will have to sign you are asked to sign paperwork in which you relinquish any right to sue or mediate for damages in case you are harmed during one of their workshops.

If you are expected to take responsiblity for your life, any program (not only the one discussed here, but any program) should take responsiblity for its life transforming potential by acknowledging there are possible risks.

Physicians and licensed therapists do not require patients or clients to sign away rights to sue or mediate for damages in case of harm.

If they dont let you see the paperwork until you are at the event, insist on sitting in a quiet coerner to read it. Get out if you are not allowed to do this.

Ask (loudly)whether there will be breaks and how often they will arrange breaks.

Demand to know how late in the evening the event will be.

Dont disclose too much personal information on forms. You need to know if they are taking precautions about confidentiality. You dont have to tell total strangers what you do for a living. Thats between you and the tax revenue department. You dont know who handles the data at their office. What if someone splits and decides to swipe a list of names and sell it?

Ask if you are going to sharing intimate painful material from your life during the event. Ask also whether you will be filmed or recorded or if anyone will be taking notes. If they are evasive or try to put you on the defensive ('Why are you being so negative?') get out.

Now...this advice goes for any human potential event, not just the one being discussed here.

Someone may read this and say 'Oh, you are so negative and paranoid. Why not be open?'

The question is---open to WHAT?'

Here's the thing. These things are adventures.

People who take adventures in the great outdoors always plan for a possible emergency. People engaged in rock climbing, camping, hiking, take care to bring maps, carry rain gear, water purifyier tablets and food. They will also leave word with friends and families about where they go, and what route they plan to take and when they plan to come back.

THat way, if they fall and break a leg and dont come home on schedule, someone will have the information needed to inform the Search and Rescue unit that covers the area.

This pre-planning is not paranoia. It is realism and respects that all true adventure includes the unknown and risk.

Well, we need to know how to prepare for social/pschological adventures.

The folks who run these programs plan the event and the environment very carefully.

THose of us whom they want to attend as new members--we need to plan too.

So that if we see that a storm is brewing we have our own means of transportation and can go home.

And if someone says, 'But you have not experienced this, how dare you pass judgement'

I would reply 'Experiences can be misleading. There are some kinds of experiences I *know* I can do without.'

And valuing heart and experience at expense of the mind is not a divine truth. And it is not a stance that transcends and includes all else.

Instead it expresses a bias that is not transcendental, but originateds in a particular belief system--in this case, Romanticism. Romanticism, a Western belief system and set of attitudes, arose from the middle and upper middle classes starting in the mid-18th Century. Much of what we think we know about "shamanism", buddhism, and other Asian religions has been biased and filtered through Western Romanticism, which priviliges experience and heart and self expression. Romanticism exists only among those who dont have to worry where their next meal or set of meals, come from.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: May 24, 2011 11:39PM

If during or after an encounter or an event, you find yourself with cravings, obsessions, anxieties or ecstacies/bliss that are outside of your normal emotional range--that by itself is a sign that something funky went on.

If you feel off kilter unsure of your own beliefs, dizzy or zoned out--thats another warnng sign. Anyone who labels this some sort of breakthrough or spiritual privilige--dont believe it.

Knowing your own range of emotions and what lies outside of that normal range is of great help.

This is a good way to assess any potential long term relationship, as well as a group or seminar.

Extremes of bliss, whether induced by drugs or by social engineering are potentially addictive. No one can stay in ecstacy permanently--the body's neurochemicals eventually get depleted and one cycles down either to normal range or into depression if the bliss has been extreme enough to deplete ones neurotransmitters.

Then, one craves that ecstacy again and one either goes back to the dope dealer for more happy powder, or back to the social engineer operator who ran the seminar or shakti factory and you get hooked all over again.

Ecstacy does not prove anything. An orgasm doesnt prove anything. Its fun only because its a departure from your baseline state.

Even an episode of so called nondual realization does not prove anything. It doesnt mean you became a better person. It doenst mean a guru who claims non dual realization or who can provide bliss experiences is necessary a kind or honest person.

Agehananda Bharati wrote in his book, Light at the Center, that someone who was a stinker prior to non dual realization will remain a stinker after non dual realization. It doesnt cure personality problems. If a person is neither kind nor honest, and wants to become a kinder and more honest person, one has to embark on a program of ethical and moral reformation.

In a way part of the crazy wisdom arguement is correct: so called nondual realization or ecstacy have NOTHING to do with kindness or ethical behavior.

However, contrary to the crazy wisdom argument, nondual enlightement or the ability to generate ecstacy in others does not excuse or justify cruel or dishonest behavior.

The consequences of cruel and dishonest behavior are real, not illusory. The consequences affect the bodies, finances, health, and relationships of the one who harms and those who are the targets of the harm.

As for bliss or ecstacy , its fun, enjoy it, but dont cling to any of it. These are states that are temporary and fade when your body gets tired or your neurotransmitters are sufficiently depleted.

Dont demand repeated doses of ecstacy or bliss or become dependent on the person or circumstances in which you experienced it--or you will become an addict, whether its to a guru or to the dope dealer.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: May 25, 2011 07:57AM

For those interested, here's a more direct link to the Curtis documentary 'All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace':


Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: walter1963 ()
Date: May 25, 2011 02:32PM

If you stick around this site long enough you'll come across the term NLP - this is the stuff a lot of bad people learn to use manipulate people. Byron Katie uses a lot of it and Tony Robbins is the grand master of using it.

Worse, most politicians, lawyers and salesmen use it as well. Listen to guys like Frank Luntz and Rove and you're listening to people coached in NLP. Even tele-preachers like Joel Olsteen use it.

As for NLP literature, I can't really recommend any of it, and I was trained in it almost two decades back and the books are still garbage for a a variety of reasons. Mostly because most of the books by the top trainers are nothing but sales pitches for seminars(IOW loaded with hypnotic langauge that will slowly put you in a altered state and you won't even know it).

That said, if you're really curious and want to understand what's going on language wise, here are a few books to get you going:

Language in Thought and Action by S.I. Hawaykwa. The book was originally written during WWII to counter Japanese and Nazi propaganda and how to detect it. The current version is quite contemporary and gives all sorts of examples of manipulation and exercises how to spot it.

It can be had on Amazon.

Propaganda by Edward Bernays and Mark Crispin Miller. Bernays is the creator of modern day propaganda and cultural manipulation on a national scale. He was also Joesph Goebbel's mentor. Bernay's books occupied a most prominent position in his library and he approved of almost everything Bernays wrote about.

It can be had on Amazon.

Amusing ourselves to death by Neil Postman. A scathing attack on television and what it's doing to us.

Again Amazon.

Zen TV Experiment This is now a online article on how TV viewing affects us. It's free and worth reading and doing the exercises.


Options: ReplyQuote
Sophisticated Love Bombing--Corboy Was the Mark
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: May 25, 2011 11:12PM

Id like to let readers know two different times I was love bombed.

I dont think Love Bombing quite does justice to the process or to the experience of being on the receiving end.

When it is done with real sophistication, the target or mark cannot identify it as 'love bombing' because it matches so very well with his or her deepest hopes and dreams and ambitions.

The friendliness and insta intimacy of group greeters and outreachers is very beguiling when we are lonely or bereaved.

I want to focus on the really sophisticated forms of love bombing. The ones in which the operator has had time to gather information about you, during a phase when the relationship still feels adult, conscious and under your control.

Before the operator takes it to a level where through custom made love bombing, derived from information you have trustfully provided, you are spoken to in a way to takes you via your own disclosures, into terrain where you are no longer fully aware or fully autonomy.

Warning-this information is to assist our readers and genuine exit counselors to help members of the human family regain their autonomy to the fullest extent possible in participatory democracy.

Anyone who abuses this information to become better at seducing people is going to turn into more of a monster than you already are.

Love Bombing Episode Number One

Corboy was failing big time at a graduate school program. Corboy at that time was a sincere young Catholic and was seeing a spiritual director, a Christian minister, named X. X was not trained in psychotherapy, and his pastoral counseling elicited transferance and countertransferance dynamics he was not trained to identify or control. At this time Corboy was a young squirt and knew nothing about the rules and processes by which real therapists are trained and credentials.

Corboy was heavily dependent on X because Corboy with X's talents, had discovered a range of interests (religion, social justice) that were new territory--and that Corboy's own family disapproved of.

One day, there was a group meeting at X's office and Corboy was part of it. An appointment with X was scheduled for the next day.

As Corboy prepared to leave the room that night, X said, he had been discussing Corboy with his own spiritual director, a Jesuit named Y. With a portentious pause, Pastor X said, 'What we talked about was...interesting.' He put emphasis on interesting.

X seemed to hint that all this would be brought up at the appointment the next day.
Corboy was already dependant on and deferential to X and dared not ask right then what this interesting material was. Instead, submissively, Corboy went home and spent a restless night in suspense.

Next day, Corboy was right on time for the appointment with X. Corboy deferential to X, did not demand to know right then what 'It' was all about. Corboy, all senses poised and attention focused, let X pace the discussion and then, X on his own time, revealed that he and his own spiritual director had discussed Corboy.

And they had concluded that Corboy had the potential to become a saint.

Corboy was shocked and thrilled. And scared.

What Corboy did not know then was that this was also a big, stinking skull fuck.

1) X had timed all this to ensure there was a build up. He knew Corboy was already deferential to his authority. He timed the disclosure in two parts--the night before, ensuring a night of suspense for Corboy, who already had a pattern of deferring to him.
This meant that Corboy was in a fine state of suspense and ultra focused attention by the time Pastor X dropped this Disclosure Bomb.

2) From what Corboy had already read, in Catholic devotional literature, saints are specially loved by God and Christ, but also specially vulnerable to attacks and temptations from Satan. This makes someone on the sainthood track all the more dependent on their spiritual director (in this case Pastor X) for guidance.

3) If you think too much about your own sanctity, you lose it because thinking too much about your sainthood means you are not really a saint, you are a narcissistic skeek.
That will also attract attention from the Devil. So you get told you are a candidate for sainthood, and then you must not think too much about it. Catch 22 baby.

This means not daring to think consciously about being told I was a candidate for sainthood meant I dared not think too closely about all the circumstances around this bombshell disclosure--such as why in hell did Pastor X even tell me this bullshit?

4) It isolated me because you cannot just tell your friends, let along your pals at the pub, 'Hey my spiritual director told me I have the potential to be a saint."

5) You cant tell most therapists for fear they will think you are narcissistic or totally insane.

I was royally stuck for 6 years until Pastor X left town, I had some ghastly nightmares that were very helpful in revealing unconscious dynamics of the relationship and found a good therapist.

But friends, this was sophisticated love bombing in action. Fiendishly effective.

Love Bombing Number Two--A Heavy Handed Grope

The next attempt someone made to get into Corboy's pants was at a reputable Buddhist retreat center. They did get in, but Corboy, though aroused for two days, did not get screwed.

(Corboy is pleased to report that neither the retreat center nor the lovebomber had no affiliation with the Soto Zen tradition)

Okay. Corboy was at a silent Buddhist insight retreat. Each day there were group discussions. People could bring up concerns.

At the end of the retreat, as Corboy was going toward the car, luggage in hand, the assistant to the retreat leader stopped Corboy.

This person said Corboy had what it took to be a Buddhist writer.

Corboy, at loose ends careerwise, and feeling embarrassed about it, was thrilled to hear this.

But Corboy had grown up a bit and said, 'I am not qualified to be a Buddhist writer. I have not taken the precepts. I still dont have a stable daily zazen practice.'

But all of Corboy's well grounded concerns were rebuffed by the recruiter, who had an odd smug smile and kept saying, 'I dont want to hear this. Send me samples of your work.'

Corboy felt thrilled and flattered, but had a strange feeling this person got off on playing talent scout. You get to see peoples faces light up--and thats the sort of rush a drug dealer might have when seeing people jonesing for dope.

Corboy felt thrilled for two days. Then...back home Corboy remembered all the crap with Pastor X. Corboy thought, 'I am really not qualified to be a Buddhist writer. Plenty of qualified and excellent Buddhist teachers are writing material. Last thing needed is for an untrained newbie like me to write unreliable material and possibly run the risk of misleading people. I dont want to do to others what Pastor X did to me.'

This does NOT retrospectively excuse or justify what Pastor X did. Corboy later met people who had been harmed by him.

All this is to convey how subtle Love Bombing can be if it is done after you have been in a group or personal relationship that still feels adult and conscious and autonomous--but during which the operator is gathering information about your hopes and dreams and then uses this to concoct a customized surgical strike on your inner landscape that changes that relationship into a much more unconscious one.

I want to emphasise that I am giving this to assist people to wake up and understand
how confidential information can be used against us. When done skillfully that the lovebombing seems more like a waking Dream Come True.

And anyone who abuses this information will be unable to escape the consequences. One cannot get away from cause and effect. You become a slave of the very powers you think you have mastered.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: June 01, 2011 10:58PM

To Walter1963:

Your PM inbox is full

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Books On Mind Manipulation
Posted by: lyncwoogy ()
Date: November 07, 2011 01:31AM

He he...well it seems from your many posts on these forums, Corboy, that in fact you ARE a rather useful Buddhist writer who is delivering benefit to many.

I think there's a kind Buddhism we always are taught that you have to do this stuff for twenty years and then have somebody who is a really high mucky-muck say that you are allowed to teach it, before you can teach it. And that is true, and it's a valuable safeguard in Buddhism, because the guru tradition and the power of some of the practices has such a potential to be abused. There are a lot of people out there teaching stuff who oughtn't to be, and who don't really know enough to take that responsibility, let alone have the emotional maturity for it. Though the same could be said of Western psychologists!

However the flip side of that is that we should all help each other with what little we do know. And the fact is also, that some of us have been practising for twenty or thirty years and we really do have, at least as you have displayed above, some experience at least of what to pursue and what to avoid. Our friends may need that experience before diving full-on into something really inadvisable.

With reference to crazy wisdom, you get 'peaceful' teachers and you get 'wrathful' teachers, as you know, and often you make better progress with the wrathful ones. Crazy wisdom is a valid tradition, and there are certainly some valid practitioners of it. And one of the first things I would look for is that they give you a lot of strong warnings about crazy wisdom not being used an an excuse for slackness, indiscipline, or misbehavior. Dzongsar Khyentse would be a good example of a teacher that gives these warnings and explains crazy wisdom in more detail, what it is and what it is not.

Options: ReplyQuote

Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
This forum powered by Phorum.