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Re: James Arthur Ray, using religious metaphors to persuade
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: March 01, 2010 07:11PM

Has James Ray or his company started up their seminars again?

twitter.com/katherine1230 [twitter.com]
"is headin to a James Ray seminar in burlingame."

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: Yakaru ()
Date: March 01, 2010 07:56PM

Anticult, reading your comments has been a real eye opener for me. I didn't realise how much of this "playing dumb" they do in order to provide a cover for manipulation, and even to evoke a strong emotional revulsion in people like me, thereby excluding me (and my doubts) from their circle of followers.

However, I want to suggest that some of these gurus, Ray included, are also genuinely a bit stupid, and that a couple of other mechanisms (apart from intelligence and skill) could also be at work.

One is that Ray doesn't have to be smarter, rather, just more ruthless. I know you also point this out too - that people simply don't reckon with the possibility that a positive spiritual guy who says nice things is also capable of walking away and literally leaving them for dead.

He learned a highly developed set of skills, and then Oprah blasted him into superstardom. As I see it, he couldn't handle the pace, started believing in his own myth, and has been way out of his depth for several years. And still doesn't realise it. I see that as a sign of some stupidity.

I think it's his stupidity that has made his physically dangerous. He really seemed to think he'd given Daniel Pfankuch some kind of initiation, had plenty of warnings his sweat lodges were right on the edge of catastrophe, and even after causing deaths, didn't realise he had a serious problem. - Telling the police officer who collected him from his room to go and talk to Josh instead, for example.

I also think Ray doesn't realise all this manipulative stuff doesn't work on grieving relatives or outraged members of the public.

He learned a powerful system of manipulative tools, created a God myth around himself (and seems to believe it), and inherited fame from Oprah. I'd liken him to a speed freak who got the chance to swap his sports car for a formula one car.

His stupidity, plus the powers (fame and manipulative techniques) he "inherited" has created a true monster.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: March 01, 2010 11:21PM

I would like to point out a trap here, in the extent to which we try to figure out the workings of Death Ray's mind.
This is a classic trap that narcissists take great joy in, for in focusing on trying to figure out what makes them tick we are giving them the attention they crave and, most importantly, overlooking our own safety in the process.

I spent decades trying to do this with my family, collected a library of theories and still, today, am unable to fathom what is going on regards their thinking.
Whilst it is important to have a rudimentary understanding of the dynamics, what is vital is to recognise the danger and not get too enmeshed with that worldview.

I don't need to understand the rabid dog's thinking in order to remove myself from the danger he presents. Too much attempting to understand can expose our vulnerabilities in ways that we are not aware of until too late.

I don't think it matters if Death Ray is consciously aware of what he is doing or just dumbly following an unconscious pattern he was born with. Either way, he has already proved that he is utterly lethal to his followers and is likely to continue that way. Trying to figure out how intelligent he is or isn't doesn't change how dangerous he is to anyone crossing his path.

If you swim with sharks you worry more about staying out of range of their teeth than about the extent of their IQ.

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Re: James Arthur Ray, Dave Lakhani
Posted by: helpme2times ()
Date: March 01, 2010 11:34PM

Quote
Stoic
I don't think it matters if Death Ray is consciously aware of what he is doing or just dumbly following an unconscious pattern he was born with. Either way, he has already proved that he is utterly lethal to his followers and is likely to continue that way. Trying to figure out how intelligent he is or isn't doesn't change how dangerous he is to anyone crossing his path.
Aha! This is an excellent point. It's opposite to what Dave Lakhani, for example, has said about "intent" being the thing of importance. These guys' behaviors and ensuing real-life results are what is key.

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Re: James Ray - Hermia Nelson, Compassion Happens, MLM scam
Posted by: jeand ()
Date: March 01, 2010 11:34PM

Hermia appears wealthy and is a member of the World Wealth Society. She appeared at Cassandra Yorgey on Feb. 8th and described a conference call to Ray followers. She has international connections and probably has personal qualities that seek power vicariously by attaching to a known figure such as Ray. Megan F. may have served as Ray's Squeaky Fromm,but Nelson sure is vying to replace her.
While Ray of Darkness is talking about the Bible and Christianity from one side of his mouth,he's discussing Buddhism with Nelson. Ray's comments of darkness are eerily similiar to those of serial killers throughout history. I believe he is in darkness and has been for quite some time. What I don't understand is why he's being allowed to conduct cult recruitment and maintenance while out on bail.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: buffman ()
Date: March 02, 2010 06:12AM

NLP and persuasion courses are not the only places to learn about metaphor. Poetry and literature teachers have long known how to analyze metaphors, as have teachers of rhetoric and media studies.

Contemporary biblical criticism and progressive Christian theology/hermeneutics can also teach one about how to read a text.

Charles Faulkner's NLP audio programs on metaphor seem non-manipulative to me, and there are no upsells. Metaphors We Live By by Lakoff and Johnson is also a good reference from the Cognitive Linguistics point of view.

If anything, the reason why metaphors function unconsciously is because we don't have basic education in literature, poetry, and mythology anymore. Metaphor quickly becomes a conscious process when you have awareness of how metaphors function.

A basic education in such things exposes Ray's metaphors as entirely distorted self-serving propaganda. I do think he's not very intelligent, but yes also ruthless as a shark. Ruthless self-serving egocentrism doesn't require intelligence to execute, just pure will. And yes, such behavior can be very dangerous to others.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 03/02/2010 06:25AM by buffman.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - 2 die at Arizona retreat's sweat lodge
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: March 02, 2010 06:22AM

I echo Stoic. If you're seeing flames call 911 and get OUT.

If you try to solve the cause of the fire, while staying in the place with the fire, you'll risk dying from smoke inhalation or in a collapsed room before you figure out the cause of the fire.

And the firefighters first priority is to extinguish the flames. Only after the fire is dead, do they send in the investigation team.

Amy Wallace, in her memoir of life lived with Carlos Castaneda wrote she had to give up any hope of trying to understand it all in order to break the psychic grip of the group.

A psychopath once claimed, If you understood me, you could not judge me.

My reply would be to this psychopaths declaration: I may never be able to understand you, but I clearly understand your actions are dangerous to me--and other people.

Dont try to understand certain people.

Thats like trying to find the last digit in Pi.

Assess what these people and groups DO and the impact of what they do and that's enough.

Engineers can compute Pi to just a few digits beyond the decimal place----and that is enough for them to design
bridges strong enough to carry traffic and get other things done.

As helpme2times put it, "These guys' behaviors and ensuing real-life results are what is key."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/02/2010 06:28AM by corboy.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: Yakaru ()
Date: March 02, 2010 07:07AM

Re JR and stupidity

I'm just trying to sort out my own reactions to JR and others like him. My initial response has always been strong revulsion, and if pushed for an opinion, ridicule and derision. However I see friends and others who are clearly intelligent people, falling for it hook line and sinker, and I don't understand why.

I'm trying to work out exactly what I'm responding to, which I guess is that I find inauthenticity repellent, but for communicating with friends who have taken the bait it doesn't really help.

Since reading this forum over the last few months, I see there is much more going on than mere dishonesty, shallowness or whatever. But I also want to check out how much of my basic gut reaction is accurate.

Anyway, it's a side issue and a personal thing. I appreciate the responses.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: buffman ()
Date: March 02, 2010 07:37AM

@Yakaru,

Something I've observed is that each of us has different potential vulnerabilities to authoritarian figures and coercive groups.

James Ray looks like a fool to me--he can't even spell correctly, let alone understand Buddhism, Christianity, or quantum physics. Yet I fell for Tony Robbins--similar to Ray in many ways--while others have always seen Robbins as a cheeseball salesman.

Why we fall for who we fall for is personal, but the structure of such unhealthy relationships does have similarities.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - NLP mastering metaphors hypno-persuasion
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: March 02, 2010 07:39AM

Intelligent people fall for it because the appeal is to the emotions, not to the intelligence. Anticult will explain that this is a step by step process, the intelligent, logical mind is deliberately distracted or confused to expose the emotional vulnerability to the desired manipulation.

I've heard several claims that the more logical and intelligent people are the easier it is to confuse and manipulate them, mainly because they are used to relying on their rational abilities and generally underestimate how emotionally driven we all really are.

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