Another Toxic Scenario
The teacher/Master may go into seclusion during this Covid Virus pandemic, creating a leadership vacuum.
(In happier times, the leader may vanish for a vacation or perhaps a bit of plastic surgery.)
Before leaving, leader gives ambiguous or confusing guidelines.
Disciples are told to show initiative and maturity.
When the leader returns, those who did demonstrate initiative and maturity are punished, perhaps banished permanently or temporarily. Joy at the leader's return is nicely combined with fear of arbitrary punishment.
This is the recipe for what Alexandra Stein terms "insecure attachment" - a paralyzing combination of love and terror, which keeps the victim frozen, unable to analyze the situation, unable to fight back or flee.
Terror and Love an article by Alexandra Stein
They no longer have anyone to turn to for support other than the group it-self, which is in fact the source of the fear and stress.
This double-bind is known as a situation of “fright without solution” and is also seen in control-ling domestic violence, in hostage situations, and some forms of child abuse.When leaders or other dominant persons employ a strategy of combining isolation, terror, and“love,” persons subjected to this may experience this “fright without solution,” with consequent impairments in cognitive and emotional functioning. I remember well the feeling of pushing back critical thoughts about my group, “There was no-one to share them with,and I was bound to get punished in some way if I expressed them.
It was almost a physical feeling of pushing the thoughts from the front of my head to the back, much as one pushes a hot pan to the back burner. My emotional life, too, was largely sup-pressed during my tenure in the group.
An especially toxic way to punish someone is to praise them, reward them, even promote them, Then, with zero warning, punish or expel them.
This is a fiendish form of abuse. The newly promoted disciple's heart is wide open with joyful gratitude. Sudden punishment with zero explanation is
to shit in that person's heart. He or she will be left distrusting joy for the
rest of their lives unless they engage in the deepest of healing.
The victim goes crazy desperate for an explanation. The victims spouse may be included in the banishment or may not be. Spouses may go grovelling to the leader imploring a pardon for their disgraced partner. The only one who can provide the explanation is the abuser. An abuser will never empower the victim by giving an explanation.
If allowed to return, the victim may be browbeaten into some form of catastrophic moral capitulation.
The only remedy is to recognize several things:
God does not treat us this way.
Only nasty humans do this sort of thing.
The only way a victim of such abuse can heal is to **abandon** all hope of ever getting a satisfactory explanation from the abuser. Evil can never explain itself.
Anyone who does this to you has revealed who they really are. Whatever joy and spiritual progress they gave you was part of their disguise.
You were kicked out because you are a better person than your abuser.
Recognize the group has abused wisdom, beauty, good feelings, community service (if it has done any) to conceal its true nature.
For this you will need a recovery community. Chances are, others have been treated this same way. Go and look for them. They will be glad to give you support.
If you still have family members or beloved friends in the group, this requires a vast re-appraisal of your entire life. You need support from a community.
An isolated person is no match for this situation.
Edited 7 time(s). Last edit at 05/13/2020 07:44PM by corboy.