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Punjabi Deras and Sects - a list of names
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 28, 2017 04:03AM



Deras or sects are as old as the Sikh faith itself. While their followers come from every caste, they are mainly dominated by Dalits and other backward classes. Modern Sikhism, which promised to get rid of untouchability, failed to provide the social equality. The hold of casteist prejudice and hegemony sustained in spite of Sikh Gurus’ preachings against untouchability and their propagation of equality when they said ‘Ik noor te sab jag upjeya’ (the entire world is born out of one light) as few concerted efforts in that direction made it to the 20th century.

Punjab has the distinction of being home to the largest proportion of scheduled castes population (29 per cent, according to 2001 census, as opposed to national average of 16 per cent) who have a negligible share in the ownership of land. Not only have the landless Dalit Sikhs been dependent on big landowning Jat farmers for farming employment, they were also treated unequally in the Jat Gurdwaras. The resulting vacuum was occupied by more traditional offshoots and by anti-Sikh deras, who provided support to these marginalised communities.
As history scholar Babusha Maingi puts it in Emergence Of The “Deras” In Punjab: its continuity and change, “By and large these deras challenged fundamentalists [Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee] who claim as the protagonists of Sikhism and restricted the membership of the heterogeneous Sikh groups (particularly the non-jats) in the Sikh institutions and organisations”. They were able to offer to their followers dignity, equality and belongingness which the mainstream religion couldn’t. Radha Soamis, Sacha Sauda, Nirankaris, Namdharis, Divya Jyoti Jagaran Sansthan, Bhaniarawala and Ravidasias are among the most popular non-Sikh deras.


At a time when traditional means of redressal are perceived as corrupt or out of reach, the role of the worshipped Baba goes beyond spiritual guidance to practical support (in the form of subsidised ration and medical care, for instance) for his followers. Alongside, there has been an increase in the number of sants like Sacha Sauda’s Ram Rahim and (till he was declared clinically dead) Baba Ashutosh Maharaj of Divya Jyoti Jagarant Sansthan at Nurmahal. Here is a look at a few deras, besides Sacha Sauda.

Read the full text of the article for background on the sects named here.

Dera Sachkhand Ballan

Sant Nirankari Mission

Baba Ashutosh Maharaj

Baba Piara Singh Bhaniara


Corboy note: the various Radhasoami sects belong to this category.


Radhasaomi is interesting because a Westerner, Paul Twitchell, used its doctrine and methods to create his own cult, Eckankar.




John Roger, a disciple of Eckankar used the material to create his own franchise, MSIA (Movement of Inner Spiritual Awareness)

Center for Studies of New Religions


A Former Disciple of Eckankar revisits Eckankar


Ching Hai/Loving Hut restaurants

"Master" Ching Hai reportedly got her material from Radhasoami


And...Guru Mahraj Ji (Divine Light/Elan Vital)


The Radha Soami gurus present their method as a 'science' rather than a religion. Claiming something is scientific is the way to gain legitimacy.

In India, all too often people in the yoga and religion trades equate 'science' with 'method'.

Modern science is a specific method. To proceed scientifically, one has to
follow specific rules.

David C. Lane wrote an essay stating why it is inaccurate to call Radha Saomi
a science.


Here's great educational resource

Misconceptions About Science


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/28/2017 04:35AM by corboy.

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We rarely Google check guru endorsements from friends
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 08, 2017 12:47AM

This is from a discussion about Large Group Awareness Trainings. But
it applies to many other exploitative groups and leaders as well.



Kdag you're absolutely spot on- it's recognized as one of their tactics to be introduced by someone you trust. That person has already been coerced into their way of thinking so they will swear up and down how much it has changed their lives for the better. This is why they won't advertise- they don't want people knowing about the program without it being from someone who is a zealot for their organization. If they advertise- people research.

The best recruiters are people you already trust. And the best recruiters
are not pushy - enthusiastic.

They are sincerely enthusiastic.

And this sincerity is attractive and appealing.

But sincerity does not in itself prove anything. It is
like sweet tasting substances.

We are wired to seek out the taste of sweetness.

But...sweetness can mask the taste of poison.

Those you trust who are sincerely, may without their knowledge have had
their sincerity co-opted by indoctrination experts (calling themselves
gurus, teachers, leaders, masters) to serve an agenda of deceit.

These trusted friends, coworkers, a teacher at your children's school, lovers, relatives, even in some
cases, yoga teachers or therapists -- they will be unaware that
their newfound feeling of salvation and transformation has been produced
a set of stimuli deployed by a dishonest group or guru, who are adept at manipulating the neurochemistry of trustful persons.

Those persons you trust do not feel exploited, even though
they are being exploited without being aware of it.

You are therefore unlikely to research this leader and group your
sincere, radient friend is involved with.

Even if you do learn alarming information about this group, you
may feel afraid to compromise a valued relationship by taking this
seriously. You may persuade yourself that this is obsolete
information, the alarming stuff you're reading online happened in the past,
not the present. Or that it is written by a few malcontents or competitors.

Or that the harm reports describe a different sect from the one your
friend is in.

Your friend is glowing. She or he from all appearances looks better off than
in years. How could anything harmful have had such a good effect on your friend?

You become an enabler for your friend by making these excuses to yourself.

Unless you have unusual background knowledge, you will not know that
well organized cults make sure that their recruiters are excited new recruits
who are totally unaware of the long trail of damaged lives that group has left behind. You will be unaware that those who are burdened and overworked in teh cult are kept away from happy new converts. You and your excited happy recruiter do not know that a world of background information is knowingly concealed and that your pal was *never* in a position to give informed consent.

In short, the most effective recruiters for a cult do not know that they and their
sincerity are being pimped by their group.

Pimped to to recruit for their guru or group via their existing relationship networks.

That is why, contrary to stereotype, the best functioning gurus and cults do not go after maladjusted people. They go after people who are social, sociable,
people who, far from being losers, have a lot to offer.

People who make that group look good. People who have lots of friends and co-workers and social connections.

Without knowing it, your compromised friend or relative may through their radiant enthusiasm recommend that you consult a yoga teacher, body worker or life coach
who is, without your pal knowing it, a higher level member of the group who
may through the client provider relationship, bring the recruitment to a
more sophisticated level.

Someone with a client practice who is slave to a guru
can learn confidential information about you and tattle it to their handler
higher up in the group who can then decide if you yourself are worth targeting for long term cultivation.

You will feel as though you are making free choices. But if the rules of engagement for your friendship have changed to serve the exploitative
agenda of a dishonest group or leader -- you and your buddy
are not making free choices.

Because freedom of choice is possible ONLY if you are fully informed of the
role this group and leader are playing in influencing your friend and her
recommendations to you.

When a subject is newly recruited, he or she has been given the
sunny side of the group. He or she is excited, happy. He or she has
not been in the group long enough to notice patterns of favoritism, has
not been exposed to features and doctrine that the cult hides from
the public -- and hides to the joyous new privy to burdensome secrets.

You do not know it, but once your loved one or mentor has become
indoctrinated, the rules of engagement you once shared with
this person are no longer shared.

This subject is not yet aware that he or she has become incapable of
genuine friendship, for there's now a hidden, dictatorial third party -
the guru or group-- by which all other relationships and beliefs
are evaluated, and then deemed threatening or supportive.

Remember that your friend will feel saved, transformed, redeemed, illumined.

Your friend is unaware that deceit combined with ordinary
manipulation techniques have created all this.

You are now either a potential ally/recruit or a potential threat.

You are a person from whom secrets must be kept.

And your friend, feeling saved from death, whether spiritual or social,
will be convinced that it is worthy to lie to you, so long as
you either join the group and become saved or at least remain
supportive of your friend's cult identity.

Anything that might cause you to get a skeptical facial expression,
--your indoctrinated buddy will keep it from you, or soft-pedal it.

Meanwhile, you love and trust your friend, so you will likely
consider it unthinkable to research whatever or whoever has
made your friend seem happy and fulfilled.

So, yes indeed. We are less likely to run due diligence Google searches
on anything a loved one. friend or mentor is involved with.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/10/2017 12:33AM by corboy.

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How Some Recruiters are Trained to Ignore When You say "No"
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 18, 2017 09:52PM

There are set ups that TRAIN their disciples to anticipate every possible
objection you have and desensitize themselves to you.

Here is one example that someone did learn about.

Disciples of gurus may possibly be taught to pretend to listen to your concerns while silently chanting mantras.

Perhaps they are trained to chant mantras if they hear anything from you
that comes across as skeptical, or threatens to trigger their own doubts.


At one point, Sumerlin tried to leave - but first she had to get past several hall monitors who kept up the questioning. "it was before I learned that the only way to handle these people is to just say no," she adds. "Anything else gives them an opening to ask another question. They're trained on how to do it."

In fact, she says, a former volunteer told her how they were taught to desensitize themselves to objections from potential recruits by singing "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" and substituting all the possible objections people might have for the verses: "I'm not signing up because…of money. Ee-I-Ee-I-O. I'm not signing up because…I don't want to. Ee-I-Ei-I-O."

This is an example of how products of Werner Erhard's LGAT (Formerly est now Landmark) are trained.

This entire article is well worth reading.

When it comes to Landmark Education Corporation, There's no meeting of the Minds.

Westword/April 24, 1996
By Steve Jackson



One guru, Muktananda did learn to use methods derived from Lifespring
which in turn was a spin off of Werner Erhard's Est seminars, now known as Landmark Education.

Gurumayi, another guru, reportedly did a meditation that seemed ancient Hindu but that one of the Cult Education message board users identified as derived from a modern trance method called Neurolinguistic Programming.


If you are involved with a disciple of a guru like Muktananda or Gurumayi, you have no way to know if that disciple is capable of empathizing with you.

You have no way to know if that disciple is silently visualizing the guru or silently repeating mantras while pretending to listen to you, while pretending to be present to you when say or do anything that competes with loyalty to the guru.

These gurus operated 15 to 20 years ago.

By now, many more seemingly authentic gurus, Sufi masters and avatars (plus successors of illustrious dead gurus) are on the scene.

And using these powerful techniques so they can monopolize the inner lives of disciples, even teach disciples to pretend to listen to nonbelievers while
practicing inner trance focused on their guru.

In this predicament a guru's slave can seem to be respectful and empathic with friends, loved ones, even listen with seeming concern to skeptics and those who disagree.

But underneath there is no empathy from their side. They will give the appearance of being present to you while silently concentrating on their guru or using some other distraction technique.

Just like little kids who ignore all other words except "Yes" when nagging you
to give them junk food.

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Re: Recovering from New Age Mumbo Jumbo
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: October 02, 2017 09:49PM

Why White Lady Sisterhood Needs to Evolve
April 30, 20178 min read


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How we influence each other - an example
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: October 05, 2017 03:16AM

The best way to empower ourselves is to recognize how influence able we are.

In spite of our professed values and beliefs, our sense of what is normal
and desirable usually changes depending on the social setting we spend most time in.

I've heard people say that before they took up shooting heroin, they had
spent a lot of time with friends who were slamming dope. By hanging around
active junkies, the needle and the rest of the process lost its terror and came to seem not scary...then seemed to be companionable.

Or as they said in the old days, lie down with the wrong dog and you'll get up with fleas.

Here is an example from medicine - eating disorders.



As any inpatient will tell you, a specialist unit is the best place to learn how to be really, really good at anorexia.

They also breed their own subculture. Some patients have reported bullying and intimidation by the hard-core cases. If they eat anything at all, they’re called fat cows’ (Rice, 2004).

Vandereycken refers to ‘a most interesting blog’ post


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Lying by telling the factual truth - is your guru doing this?
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 21, 2017 07:26AM

The Devious Art of Lying by Telling the Truth



It is no secret that politicians often lie, but consider this ­– they can do so simply by telling the truth. Confused?

That statement becomes clearer when you realise that we've probably all done it. A classic example might be if your mum asks if you've finished your homework and you respond: "I've written an essay on Tennessee Williams for my English class."

This may be true, but *it doesn't actually answer the question about whether your homework was done*. That essay could have been written long ago and you have misled your poor mother with a truthful statement. You might not have even started your homework yet.

Misleading by "telling the truth" is so pervasive in daily life that a new term has recently been coined to describe it: paltering.


When Todd Rogers and his colleagues were looking at how often politicians dodge questions during debates they realised something else was going on. By stating another truthful fact, they could get out of answering a question. They could even imply something was truthful when it was not.


even if we do spot misleading truths, social norms can prevent us from challenging whether or not they are deceptive. Take a now infamous interview in the UK, where journalist Jeremy Paxman interviewed the politician Michael Howard (pictured below). He repeatedly asks Howard whether he "threatened to overrule" the then prisons governor. Howard in turn, continues to evade the question with other facts in a bizarre exchange that becomes increasingly awkward to watch. Not many of us are comfortable challenging someone in that way.

Corboy, notice this? "Not many of us are comfortable challenging someone in that way".

Imagine how difficult is is to challenge an evasive answer from a guru or rinpoche when that person is adept at tricking the audience to laugh at you, or
get annoyed with you because you are disrupting the devotional mood.

Another example:


Consider the estate agent who tells a potential buyer that an unpopular property has had "lots of enquiries" when asked how many actual bids there have been. Or the used car salesman who says a car started up extremely well on a frosty morning, without disclosing that it broke down the week before. Both statements are true but mask the reality of the unpopular property and the dodgy car.

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A restaurant menu is often a mind hack - covert influence
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 22, 2017 07:56AM

Friends, we are being targeted by subliminal influences thanks to advertising.

Here are examples from restaurant menus.

If you think "menu engineering" is creepy, just think of all the mental engineering going
into ads for shit like nicotine products, alcohol ads aimed at young people --
and yes -- cults.


(small excerpt -- the entire article is filled with descriptions
of the various mind hacks that lurk in a menu.


A recent study published by scientists at Stanford University, in California, found that vegetables that have been given indulgent sounding descriptions – such as “dynamite chili”, “sweet sizzling green beans”, and “crispy shallots” – on a cafeteria menu were picked 23% more often because it made them sound more exciting and flavoursome.


The words used to describe a food, however, may do far more than make them sound enticing – they can make our mouths water. A study from the University of Cologne in Germany last year showed that by cleverly naming dishes with words that mimic the mouth movements when eating


restaurants could increase the palatability of the food. They found words that move from the front to the back of the mouth were more effective – such as the made up word “bodok”.

The effect seems to even work when reading silently, perhaps because the brain still stimulates the motor movements


required to produce speech when reading. This masticatory effect, the authors suggest, gets our saliva glands working.

To the companies employing 'restaurant engineers', we are not persons.

We are no more than ATMs/cashpoint machines. Hire a menu engineer
to create a document that diddles our brain circuits and that is the equivalent
of finding the PIN number that will open someone's account.

In this fourth industrial revolution, we are not persons. We are
meat robots capable of disgorging money.

Instead of the classic used car salesman persuasion methods, now they're
mind hacking us.

So, learn more about this so you can keep your likes and dislikes truly your own -- and lock the hackers out.

Again, here's the BBC article. An amazing read.


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Re: Recovering from New Age Mumbo Jumbo
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 26, 2017 12:30AM

[] - Is Your Spiritual Teacher a Narcissist - Gigi Young


1) They are more "special" than you. They have more of a connection to higher abilities or god.

2) They put others teachers down. No one is as good as them. They are threatened easily by others.

(Corboy They make jokes at the expense of other teachers and traditions or even insult them.)

3) They seek pity or are a martyr.

(Corboy: When ill, this type often guilt trips disciples into becoming enablers. If scandal hits the teacher and community, often the teacher gets sick or goes on a retreat. Illnesses are blamed on disciple's negative energies or doubts. You may be ejected from the community or sent into disgrace because your negative energy wounded the teacher's aura - this is just a re-enactment of the alcoholic family.)

4) Weirdly protective inner circle.

(Corboy: big tip-off. Never, ever ignore this.)

5) They teach mainly from an intellect as opposed to the heart or spirit. They are cur off from their emotional body.

Gigi noted: I was a little concerned with the number of people who wrote off the possibility that a person they consider to be "spiritual" could be an abusive narcissist. "How can my husband be a narcissist when he watches Bashar and quotes Tolle?"

Let me be clear here.

The spiritual world is a perfect place for a narcissist. There are even spiritual teachers who teach from a place of needing adoration and energetic supply as opposed to genuinely wanting to uplift others. Individuals can logically understand universal law, recite it, and never truly integrate it - Or live it. Metaphysical information can be spoken from the intellect, or pure mind, with no true connection to the heart, higher self, or spirit.

It is more than OK to detach from anyone who you feel may be damaging for as long as you need to feel balanced.

Anyone genuinely concerned about your well being will let that happen

** Add Ons!**

6) Overtly sexual- sexual energy is magnetic and people with NPD will use it as an easy way to gain attention and energy.

Maria Anthea has a blog article here. She referenced Gigi's Youtube video quoted Gigi listing additional warning signs of narcissism in a spiritual teacher.



For a narcissist, the spiritual community is the perfect place. It’s the perfect place to angle yourself to be. Why? Because of all the narcissistic supply that you can have.”

“So, just because someone is able to talk about the eleventh dimensions of time and space, or of how to heal your heart, or spirit guides, or whatever spiritual concept it is, doesn’t mean that they’re actually spiritually connected at all.”

“The first [quality] is that they are special, and have more abilities than you. Or, they have more direct access to Source.”

(Corboy: pay attention to this. The Specialness Disease. Terminal Uniqueness. A narcissistic therapist may trick us to believe that he or she is special, has something that all other therapists do not have. You are made to feel lucky, saved, rescued because you were referred to this special therapist just in time. If become convinced this person is your only option, you feel afraid to entertain doubts, feel afraid to trust your own misgivings. Worse, you put up with BS you'd never tolerate from anyone else and you self respect gradually bleeds away.)

“If you feel like someone is a narcissistic person leading a cult or trying to form that, trying to form a very distinct spiritual circle for their own narcissistic supply, they will give you information and insight but there will be an air of being different or special. There will be something special about them that no one else can really do or can offer you. Even if they say that they’re all one, and that you can rise to be anything that you want and that you are free, there will always be an undertone no matter how subtle it is, that they have more access to spirit than you, or they were simply born different, and oftentimes they have a very direct mission that they have to do because they’re special. Because they’re born with this. And this is where you sense a narcissistic ego right there. It’s right there.”

(Corboy--Hear, hear - this is it. Don't be fooled by self deprecating mannerisms or laughter. attention and see if disciples feel oh so special for having found this teacher or therapist or leader. Feel oh so special because
they attribute all sorts of special qualities to the teacher when outsiders
are bored, or see the teacher as arrogant or downright creepy. )

“They have to be the best. They have to be the one who has supreme knowledge. They will also accuse other people of copying them; they will think that somebody else who is talking about spirituality is copying them. Because again they have to be supreme and anybody who is talking about spirituality 'must be copying my work or me'. Which is ironic because actually many spiritual teachers who have NPD don’t use their own original material; much of the processes they use and material they use are actually taken from ancient religions, or other teachers, or other texts. So there is that mirroring again where they themselves don’t have that access to spirit to necessarily have their own perspective on things, so they take it from someone else and they assume that everybody else is copying.”

“A narcissistic person will seek pity. And this is odd. As we think people with NPD are full of ego and would be beyond pity and pity would be embarrassing. But this is actually a very clever defense mechanism…Being a wounded baby bird allows you to not take responsibility for your actions…It keeps their inner circle and followers highly protective of them.”

Corboy: Valuable information here. Abusive people will often exhibit a small child pathos right in the midst of treating you like shit, or just afterwards.
They have a genius for pulling the wounded child pathos right when they sense
you are about to set boundaries on 'em and leave. They pull the martyr number
when hostile attention is given to abuses.

A narso guru who plays the pity card will claim to be crippled by astral assault, demonic assault, bad vibes from students or from society.

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Rationalizing Abuse - the List
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: December 09, 2017 08:33AM

"Remember that because Truth is Real and there is no separation and all that, literally anything can be re-framed as love. That’s right — anything"

For the entire list of rationalizations, read here:

Pro-tips for Yoga/Spiritual Abuse Gaslighters


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Re: Recovering from New Age Mumbo Jumbo
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 29, 2018 10:33PM

Dangerous Cult Leaders
Dangerous Traits of Cult Leaders
Posted Aug 25, 2012


This person survived a narcissistic parent who exploited Christianity. Change the terminology and this happens in non Christian families as well.

When a Narcissist “Gets Religion,” You Get Screwed! By Lenora Thompson




For an interesting look at religion in service to ego, get and read

When God Becomes a Drug by Leo Booth.


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