Hi Nettie, All.
First of all, thank you for writing about your experience and following this thread for so long. I found it most helpful reading it in 2007.
I participated in the Landmark Forum two years ago and had a 'breakthrough' where I thought I'd gained enlightenment. After an interview with the Forum Leader I was asked to leave early (late Sunday afternoon) and had my fee refunded to me (nice touch - enlightenment for free!). I then spent 6 hours wandering lost in London Underground before pulling it together. I kept in touch with reality for a couple of months after that but wasn't sleeping properly and thinking/writing feverishly (later diagnosed as a hypomanic episode). I then started to lose the plot and found myself sectioned and sedated in a psych ward. Fortunately a good night's sleep sorted me out and I was released a week later, refusing all anti-psychotics.
I hadn't experienced any mental health problems before participating in the Landmark Forum, but I was a bit jetlagged when I started it which probably contributed to my reaction.
I do think the Landmark Forum uses a light form of hypnosis. The Leader said "Some people think we use hypnosis" and the room had a good laugh about that, but not all hypnosis needs a swinging pocket watch and the words 'look into my eyes...'. The instructions given are so vague eg "By 4pm on Sunday you WILL have had a breakthrough" (followed by a hand clap that seemed out of place at the time) that the subconscious could interpret that in so many different ways. I took it on myself to decide that I wasn't going to suppress my energy anymore. Oh boy did I manage that! Very dangerous thing, opening all the doors in your head at once.
Anyway, 2 years on I've finally got around to writing about the experience and posted it to my website which was generated out of that period of hypomania. Hope someone finds it interested - I certainly did. Not something I'd want to repeat though. [www.iamthespoon.org