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Re: Recovering from New Age Mumbo Jumbo
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: February 25, 2017 01:16PM

"Spiritual" Ideas that Enable Abuse and Shame the Victim - by Shahida Arabi


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Praise as Control
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: March 09, 2017 10:15PM

Doing It in Public -- Brad Warner at Hardcore Zen


This entire essay is worth a peek.

Most of the time, our entry into an abusive group or abusive relationship happens
as a result of our receiving flattery.

When we think of social control, most of us have visions of thumping jackboots, chanting mobs, charmismatic types with glowing eyes and velvet voices.

Praise? Flattery? Compliments? Being listened to attentively?

Few of us imaging these as active ingredients in recruitment.

Here is an excerpt.


...sensitivity to praise and to criticism is directly tied to our survival instinct. Any insights you might have that go against the prevailing understanding are going to be attacked because they will appear to be dangerous to the survival of the greater tribe of which you are part.

Heaping praise upon these insights is a subtle form of attacking them. By praising someone you are able to control that person since that person will naturally want to keep being praised. Praise means acceptance and acceptance means survival. All praise comes with an unspoken threat of someday withholding that praise and thereby threatening your survival.

It’s very nearly impossible to rise above this. Even knowing how this stuff works is no assurance you won’t fall prey to it. The instinctual processes work on a level that is inaccessible to the thinking mind. These instinctual processes are unaffected by what you know intellectually and continue to operate in spite of whatever knowledge you have about how they function.

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Re: Recovering from New Age Mumbo Jumbo
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: March 25, 2017 09:10PM

6 Ways Spiritual Thinking Can Reinforce Oppression and Racism


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Some articles on social influence from Cracked dot com
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: June 15, 2017 12:53AM

6 Brainwashing Techniques They're Using On You Right Now


Here is one that is devastatingly effective. Most of us are scared to be laughed at, especially if we have come to depend on a group for social affirmation.

David Wong tells us about the 'appeal to ridicule


Keeping You In Line With Shame

I won several formal debates in college using my patented technique of simply repeating my opponent's argument in a high-pitched, mocking tone while wiggling my fingers in the air. There really is no defense.

They call this the appeal to rididcule fallacy. To which I would simply rebut, "Oooooh, appeal to ridicule fallacy! Well I've got a 'phallus' you can 'see' right here, college boy."
Professionals have more sophisticated methods, but it boils down to the same technique. "They" know that if they can paint an idea as ridiculous, the listener usually won't bother examining it any closer to find out if the ridicule is justified.

After all, why even consider something that's ridiculous? That's only something a ridiculous person would do! And you're not ridiculous ... are you?

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The Value of Boredom - Just Say No to Peak Experiences?
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: July 20, 2017 10:15PM

Just beware of heavy handedly seeking out reverie and boredom as a way to
enhance your creativity so you'll enhance your market value.

There is something more to life than market value. Let yourself get bored.

Here's a BBC News feature article. Some new
evidence suggests that boredom may foster creativity.


Corboy note: boredom may also provide valuable breathing space that
permits subversive humor, joking, and doubt to step forward.

One thing about cults: you live a lifestyle that keeps you too busy, too
frightened, to intense and passionate to feel boredom.

Bored people become pranksters. Their suppressed doubts and misgivings
have space, when boredom permits, to make jokes, doodle dangerous cartoons
indulge in revealing fantasies.

Boredom leads to PLAY. An important feature of cults is that leaders
and disciplinarians hate and fear playfulness. They want to monopolize
your attention.

Boredom opens cracks in the wall of the mental prison.

Play and subversion sneak in through the cracks and reveal truths you've
been hiding from yourself and from others.


Personal note:

For a number of years, I had fleeting fantasies when I drifted into reverie
before going to appointments with a therapist I was working with.

I ignored the the repeated fantasy that emerged in those reverie moments.

Looking back, those fleeting fantasies which I refused to examine
were stating that this was a bad, very bad situation and signalling
I needed to leave.

In the old days, people used worry beads, some still do. Look up komboloi, the
Greek worry beads.

Others doodled. In the very old days, people whittled.

If you are lucky, you have had the time to lie back and watch clouds

Boredom is the open frontier of of awareness.

Don't fence it in. Don't strip mine it.

It's unique. It is you.

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The cost of fighting an adored guru - a lesson from bicycling
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: July 24, 2017 10:02PM

This is a comment following an article tied to
an important event in the sports world.

Greg Lemond -- first American to win the Tour de France


It is 100% applicable to the search for truth
when there are abuses of spirituality.

Greg LeMond moves forward after '12 years of hell'



LeMond, then in his late 40s, was finally able to tell his wife what he had told no one else: As a child he had been sexually abused by a family friend.

That revelation — and the recovery that followed it — probably would have been known only by the family. But LeMond shared his secret with cyclists who were rumored to be doping, in an effort to convince them how liberating it was to tell the truth.

“He always felt afraid,” Kathy said. “Imagine what that’s like.”

One of the comments following this article


Greg (Lemond's) first win in Paris was something to behold. Brought great joy and laughter to me at the time, and utter surprise, as I just happened upon it in a tiny motel room in Europe turning on the TV.

One possible lesson from all of this is just how long lies can be maintained by powerful people through oppression. There's no guarantee the righteous prevail over brutishness. Look around and this probably is taking place over and over somewhere in your world, if not the greater political world we're responsible for. I completely understand Greg's professional posture viz Armstrong (not casting the first stone) but at some point we are forced to do just that so that more and more people aren't hurt or to protect the profession. Unfortunately, that's not often rewarded.


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An Objective Examination of the Bhagavad Gita
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 05, 2017 10:02PM

If you Meet Krishna on the Road, Kill Him. Oct
(Disclaimer: The title is a reference to the Buddhist saying: “If you meet Buddha on the road, kill him.” meaning something like: To fetishize your interpretation of Buddha is to disregard his teachings. If you think that you’ve discovered the truth, shatter your illusion.)

This will be a response to some of the criticism I’ve received on and offline for the post The Yoga of Arjun’s Despondency.


The most common criticism I receive is that I didn’t “get” it. I interpreted the text literally, whereas it is a metaphorical or spiritual treatise. Its really about an “inner battle” whereas I focus entirely on the external battle.

The second criticism I get is that since I disagree with Krishna’s conclusions, I must not understand, or disagree with his reasoning.

I find these criticisms unsatisfactory, but they comes up a lot so I might as well address them...

For more, read here.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/05/2017 10:22PM by corboy.

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"Find out if they expect you to recruit other people"
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 08, 2017 04:11AM




Movements like the Landmark Forum go a step further, requiring the participants to “drink the Kool-Aid,” a term that was introduced to the American lexicon after nearly a thousand members of the Peoples’ Temple drank poisoned Kool-Aid and died at the behest of their cult leader, Jim Jones.

Although suicides are thankfully rare among self-help cults, the use of specific language and behavior is not. Followers of such movements often speak in coded language, soon believing that they are superior to others who cannot follow their jargon. Some use personality tests, like Enneagram, which allegedly help you to know yourself; others encourage you to get rid of your sexual hang-ups by entering polyamorous relationships and engaging in group sex. All develop their own slogans, like “Ask for what you want,” “Achieve a breakthrough,” or “Beingness in a personal form.” The trouble is, many of the dictates can be interpreted in several ways, with the result that they can be used to further one’s self-absorption.

One easy way to tell if you are in a cult or not is by finding out if they expect you to recruit other people or not. A few years ago, when a neighbor of mine persuaded me to go to an introductory program at Landmark, I met several people who had been lured there under false pretexts, such as invitations to dinners.

What I find most annoying about the self-help movement is the “holier than thou” attitude of its followers. They assume that if you don’t belong to a self-help cult, you must be unenlightened. But, in my experience, if you inspect their behavior instead of their words, you will find a lack of even the commonest courtesy or compassion.

Followers of cults are often unwilling to engage in a philosophical or intellectual debate. What they want is quite the opposite, namely, to be with others who think exactly like themselves. No wonder, then, that we are seeing political and social polarization in our country today.

The other troubling aspect of many self-help movements is that you will find them filled with women. Are women in our society led to believe that they are in serious need of improvement? Plagued by a deep sense of unworthiness, are they seeking self-satisfaction and self-aggrandizement in seminar after seminar?

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The Tao Jones Index - Mindfulness as Opiate of the Masses
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 27, 2017 12:00PM

“The Tao Jones Index”
May 3, 2012 New Republic


Silicon Valley's Insufferable Cult of Happiness


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Indian Gurus Accused in Criminal Cases -- a list
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 27, 2017 10:16PM

Gurmeet Ram Rahim, Asaram And More: Self-Styled Godmen Accused in Criminal Cases


Controversial godmen of India: A list of self-styled ‘gurus’ and their sexual assault controversies
Several notable self-styled gurus have faced criminal action or are presently lodged in various jails across the country in numerous sexual assault cases.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/27/2017 10:18PM by corboy.

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