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Warning Signs for Spotting Disingenuous Teachings
Posted by: YellowBeard ()
Date: September 05, 2010 08:40AM

ACIM ... turns G-D and Jesus and the Holy Spirit Jesus into an ATM. ... I used to be Catholic and figure that Jesus didnt go through all that stuff just to be turned into a focus for wish fulfillment.
Wanted to add a little focus on this one issue here because I feel it's a very good point. This is a good warning sign in general to look for when in doubt about a particular group, teacher, or teachings. When the Divine is presented as something to tap into to get things from to add to yourself (like an ATM), I feel that alone should set off some mental flags to start looking a bit critically into the particular group, teacher or teachings.

I feel that a cult or disingenuous teaching can be simplified by describing them as "corrupt". And they will have the same attributes of other corrupt things that we have to watch out for, such as a street hustler as opposed to a person honestly selling fruit or flowers on the corner.

A street hustler using a shell game suckers you in by appealing to your greed. It's the excitement of getting free money. Your fairly innocent greed is then used against you, and it's the hustler that ends up with the free money. But if you're conscious of our natural greed impulses, and you keep them in check, you're not going to gravitate towards the easy money street hustler table.

Disingenuous spiritual teachings lure you in in the same way, by appealing to your greed. If it's a theistic teaching, the Divine is presented as something you can tap like Corboy's ATM description. If it's more of an Eastern style teaching, the universe is something that you can alter with your mind to get what you want out of life.

These are all "corrupted" versions of the actual message of spiritual teachings. In the theistic approaches, opening up to the Divine is an extremely positive and uplifting act for many. But it's not something done to get "things". It's a completely different mental act, one that I'd imagine even uses a different area of the brain.

With the Eastern approaches, it's taught that the world isn't entirely solid in the way we normally perceive. But just like with the theistic approaches, this has nothing to do with getting things or attempting to manipulate reality to try to get what we want.

Usually the corruption of these things isn't so extreme like with the thought reform experiments possibly involved in A Course in Miracles or like what we see with destructive cults in general. Usually it's just a guy trying to make money off you, like with characters like Deepak Chopra who teach that the universe is a giant ATM machine just waiting to fulfill your every need. (Although they end up using us as their ATM machine!)

But whether it's a simple Deepak Chopra-stlye capitalist or the opposite extreme of the dangerous mega-guru Sai Baba, they all rely on your greed to lure you into their web. So this is a human instinct we need to keep in check within ourselves. Without greed having much actual influence in our lives, what need do we feel for Deepak Chopra or Sai Baba? And from this perspective, we actually see them more clearly for what they are when we're not blinded by our passionate urges to get "more".

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Re: New Boyfriend/Course of Miracles? Or Nonsense? Brainwashing?
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 05, 2010 10:18PM

Yellowbeard wrote

So (greed)is a human instinct we need to keep in check within ourselves.

Exactly. A certain appetite for resources was needed in order to survive during harsher times in human history.

But it isnt an instinct to be eradicated, its something for which the real remedy is neither
indulgence, or total suppression, but insight.

*Do I really need this?
* If I know I do not really need this and am still craving it anyway, where is this craving coming from?

*Is the craving rooted in my feeling guilty, bored, frightened, inferior to others, lonesome or discontented?

Finally---are these root feelings (or complexes) of guilt, fear, boredom, inferiority, loneliness, discontent--rooted in my personal history?

Or to some extent are these feelings being inflamed and massaged by triggers in my environment--including triggers designed by marketing types who want to trick me into buying their stuff?

Note: I went to a movie theatre and was revolted by the violently coloured carpet, flashing lights and gaudy displays all around the concessions stand.

Two other people with quiet tastes like mine later told me they could not stand to go into that same theatre, saying they too disliked the sensory bombardment.

A third informant revealed that there is something known as 'casino architecture' that is designed to bombard people with particular kinds of sensory triggers geared to inflaming restlessness, greed and that greatly increase the likelihood they will buy stuff.

Well, some forms of fake spirituality may be the equivalent of 'casino architecture'.

Anything that turns G-d or meditation or (fill in the blank) into your personal ATM is casino architecture in the form of an idea complex.

THese days we call it The Secret or Plastic Shamanism, or Law of Attraction, but stuff of that kind has been around for ages, as have the shell games, and street con tricks
that exploit the human instinct of accumulate more before winter arrives.

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Re: New Boyfriend/Course of Miracles? Or Nonsense? Brainwashing?
Posted by: solea13 ()
Date: September 05, 2010 10:47PM

Corboy's mother was in a relationship with a 'love pirate'. This is a funny term but such a sad thing in reality, to be so utterly devoted to an abusive person. Dr. Nancy Kalish has done research on Lost Love relationships. She describes how when people fall in love with someone in their formative years, the love relationship becomes such an integral part of their personal narrative that they can NEVER let it go. They may go on to have other relationships but they might always pine for the lost love and dream of re-uniting with the Lost Love as long as they live!

It seems to me that this research might also have wider implications in the way people fall in love with an abuser during their formative years or during the heightened period when entering a high demand group or cult. For example, I fell in love with the person who taught me the initital 'classes' of my cult (not the guru himself). That person was later 'ex-communicated' from our cult. The loss and the effects of that experience still resonate through my life to this day.

The research is quite interesting. Dr. Kalish has a website you can find by entering her name on Google and a blog here:

Dr. Nancy Kalish Blog

To bring it back to the poster's original post: when you get deeply involved with someone who's in a cult, the emotional variables can be pretty much endless for both people involved. I understand that ACIM may not be a cult in the true sense of the word. However, the dynamics may be quite similar. There's quite often a heightened sense of intensity when people feel that they are somehow 'special' or 'chosen' because they have the priviliged spiritual knowledge provided by the cult. It can create all kinds of weird drama in interpersonal relationships as the people involved create mythical personal narratives revolving around having a special mission to serve humanity. It's an addictive feeling too. Like corboy's mother, it can be unbelievably difficult to break those psychological patterns when trying to establish a normal life at a later point.

Clearly the poster isn't at that point and may have moved on already ... I'm just trying to describe some of the truly weird dynamics that can start happening when you're involved in a cultic relationship/situation.

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Re: New Boyfriend/Course of Miracles? Or Nonsense? Brainwashing?
Posted by: seecloromsPop ()
Date: October 19, 2011 06:09AM

I met this person he was doing a some sort therapy and he told me that he studied Course of Miracle.. boy all I can tell this he thinks that he has power over you or anyone..

I can only tell you if you boyfriend does not come out of this group i say get out before you get pulled in.. He will change even more and you will not be with this person.. they are really weird..

I changed my number and that was it...

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