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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: September 02, 2010 10:35PM

Hi Maggie,

Sorry that your friend has been caught up in the LGAT con. These LGATs seem to delve deep into peoples minds and traumas but provide no further help or support in coming to terms with what is uncovered----they only coerce you into joining the LGAT circus to recruit for them and keep taking the overpriced courses.
Here is a link to a page on this site that is helpful regarding dealing with friends and family that are caught up in a cult.

[www.culteducation.com]

Sadly, I doubt that you can do very much for your friend until the LGAT delusion/spell starts to break for him. You do need to make sure that you don't get drawn in yourself out of sympathy for him.

Educating yourself about how these groups work and get away with what they do is probably the best thing that you can do and this site is packed with such educational resources.

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: magpie ()
Date: September 02, 2010 11:21PM

Stoic,

Thank you for replying to me. There is no possible way he can get me to go and to be honest I am mystified as to why he waited nearly 8 months before he even broached his involvement with me. I think that perhaps he knew all along I would disapprove of it from the get go. I grew up in clearwater florida, scientologists all over the place no chance of me getting sucked into a cult. I also have spent loads of time reading about various cults all my life as they fascinate me.

The problem I am having now is that he seems to want to have a friendship relationship with me but I do not know why..... What does he want from me? I cannot answer this question no matter how much I read on Landmark. Like this morning he texted me wanting an old aquaintances last name, I asked him why, and he said notice your resistance instead of willingness to assist????? ( he sounds like a borg from star trek) I was curious is all and I didn't remember her last name anyway. I wonder if he needs to complete his past with her as well. Anyway I eventually went on to tell him he and I no longer shared the same reality, and he says We NEVER did but he can live with that??? There was a time a long time ago that he loved me but now that has no meaning to him whatsoever it is like he scrubbed it from his brain and now looks on me like I was not a part of his past but yet he continues to try and be my friend. It is so confusing.... I desperately need to talk to ex members or people who really know how to decipher his behaviour. At this point I am just greatly curious to understand.

Mag

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: Martin N ()
Date: September 03, 2010 04:23AM

Magpie - if your friend sounds to you like he is trying to fix your relationship by having you attend the Forum, then he's got other issues he has not dealt with yet. LE is aware of how people come off a high after the Forum, like Jesus walking on water so to speak, and they cannot stop talking about it because of the experience.

Describing the Forum, explaining the Forum, telling you about the Forum, giving you the logistics of the Forum - which Rick Ross has done an _awesome_ job of collecting these from various sources - from people who have and have not done it but think they understand it because they are psychiatrists/psychologists/philosophers/social inquirers or what have you - is, in my view, a _futile_ exercise.

I'm a technocrat, I work with computers - and I can assure you, any inane amount of time you will spend "researching" the Forum via Google, Yahoo, reading testimonials about it from people who have taken it or not taken it, is only going to leave you with one thing and one thing only - FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt).

Why? Because it looks to you like your friend who has done this is trying to "fix" you or your relationship with him by having you do the Forum. And which one of us thinks we need fixing? Exactly.... few to none.

In the end the choice will come down to - you will either _do_ it or you _won't_. There is nothing in-between other than the FUD I pointed out above that you will be left with if you just "research" something which absolutely cannot be researched because it doesn't live in the realm of knowledge but in the realm of experience. To put it another way, you can research what tasting a lemon, or having sex for the first time, or jumping out of an airplane looks like to your heart's content - all will fall short of the glory of the experience of those things. _REST ASSURED_ the Forum is exactly like that.

You won't hear anything you don't already know in the Forum. The only new things you will hear are people's stories about their lives which are kept confidential inside the room for the sake of protecting everyone's privacy. The one thing the Forum is, is a safe place to share a story you may not want to share on this Forum about yourself or even with people who know you..

The only thing you will come out of the Forum with after you do it is a new perspective on your life experience, history, past. This past also includes, as I have pointed out, many unresolved traumas that result from childhood and have lingered into adulthood for all of us that have us act out in _patterned ways of behavior_ - many times _contrary_ to our benefit, our integrity, sense of morality, values, etc. E.g. how is stepping out on your marriage beneficial even once? It isn't. How about doing it over and over again until you get caught red-handed, as all have? But I kept doing it. Intellectually, it doesn't make sense to engage in self-destructive behaviors, right? Then why does one do them? That's the conundrum that one begins to _scrape_ the surface of in the Forum.

The Forum will not heal you, help you, nor resolve your problems. No such miracles exist inside of 3 days and an evening. Unless Jesus himself is resurrected and touches you with the healing touch of God, nothing will be different about you after the Forum other than you will come out 1) with a new view/perspective on things, and 2) you'll be pissed or 3) you may be elated. I've seen people be elated - I wasn't one of them. I went _down_, e.g. depressed - but then I also had this pile of crap on my back that I had to clean up with my wife, former employers, friends, etc. which had lingered for years.

Your friend may have a pile of crap on his back too - toward you, which is why he thinks he can "fix" you by having you do the Forum - and that's exactly why you're pissed, because that same empty self-righteousness he always had, is now just more pronounced after his LE experience, and until he starts facing himself and his crappy behavior that had gotten him to where he is now, you can bet your bottom dollar he will remain that way for a while.

If he contacts you again next time - you should ask him, why are you so insistent on me doing the Forum? What did you get out of it? He'll most likely start with a story about some feel-good material he may have picked up - e.g. "life's empty and meaningless" is a really good feel good line to justify out of integrity, desirous behaviors , but cut him off and just start asking him about specific stuff, e.g. _what happened_ when you were a child between you and your dad, for instance... or you and your mom? Or what was your relationship with your parents like? Or, were you ever sexually abused or physically abused? Or have you ever lied to a loved one? Just general, 7 deadly sins, type of questions... or questions that relate to the violation of the 10 Commandments. Why? Because you can bet your house, life and bottom dollar he's violated one of the 10 Commandments, or as they call it in the Forum - "out of integrity" behavior.

The only way _YOU_ are going to ever do the Forum is if you see something in what your friend that you recognize as a quality that he has gotten out of being in the Landmark Forum - e.g. he's more generous than before, or more relaxed, or more forgiving, or more easy going, or has cleaned up his life/act completely with his gf/wife/friends/family/employer/community, etc. You will also have to want to change something about yourself - some persistent habit that has you be in ways you don't want to. The Forum isn't the ONLY avenue to effect behavioral changes. You can do therapy as well - but unless you've got insurance to cover for it, it can get very expensive, very quickly. If you do the Forum, you will at least BEGIN to see what it is that you can change in yourself that you have been resisting changing for a long time. To your friend's point - you are resisting him when he talks to you about the Forum. If you leave your friend out of the discussion, for a moment, and focus on your feelings in the moment when he's blasting you with the Forum on the phone or in person - what feeling do you have? Can you describe it? Where does that feeling come from - is it really triggered by your friend or by something that happened in your past that you are now projecting onto your friend? etc etc.

I'm not gonna go psychoanalyze anything - given that I am NOT a psychoanalyst - however, I've put myself into uncomfortable situations many a times over, whether through LE or therapy or just LIFE (at work, at home, etc) to know we are ALL prone to thinking in similar, if not exact, ways. While we all may be unique as far as our individual paths/lives/experiences/skills - there are some things which are common to 6.8 billion people. You only get to discover those things by being part of some group and interacting with others and actively seeking feedback about how you are occurring to other people... LE is one avenue for that. Therapy another. Scientology may be yet another route - which I'm willing to try provided someone else pays for it :).

Again, nothing I say here will actually have you understand a damn thing about the Forum - but sharing some of my experience with it can definitely add _some_ value. What you will get if you do it is _completely_ different than what I got, or what Stoic got or any # of people here have gotten by doing it. That's the beauty of it. And remember, it will not _fix_ anything, ok? It's just a peak experience.. like an orgasm :).



Quote
magpie
Stoic,

Thank you for replying to me. There is no possible way he can get me to go and to be honest I am mystified as to why he waited nearly 8 months before he even broached his involvement with me. I think that perhaps he knew all along I would disapprove of it from the get go. I grew up in clearwater florida, scientologists all over the place no chance of me getting sucked into a cult. I also have spent loads of time reading about various cults all my life as they fascinate me.

The problem I am having now is that he seems to want to have a friendship relationship with me but I do not know why..... What does he want from me? I cannot answer this question no matter how much I read on Landmark. Like this morning he texted me wanting an old aquaintances last name, I asked him why, and he said notice your resistance instead of willingness to assist????? ( he sounds like a borg from star trek) I was curious is all and I didn't remember her last name anyway. I wonder if he needs to complete his past with her as well. Anyway I eventually went on to tell him he and I no longer shared the same reality, and he says We NEVER did but he can live with that??? There was a time a long time ago that he loved me but now that has no meaning to him whatsoever it is like he scrubbed it from his brain and now looks on me like I was not a part of his past but yet he continues to try and be my friend. It is so confusing.... I desperately need to talk to ex members or people who really know how to decipher his behaviour. At this point I am just greatly curious to understand.

Mag

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: magpie ()
Date: September 03, 2010 06:26AM

Thank you Martin, I have to digest most of what you said. I will never go to anything from Landmark, he has mentioned a few times me going but I refuse to even consider it. I will post more later. I just had an interesting convo with him.... ohhhh what a waste of my time...

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: magpie ()
Date: September 03, 2010 07:34AM

And for the record, I see nothing positive about his changes from the forum (he has been involved with Landmark for 5 years, at this moment he is taking the wisdom courses so it's not like he is fresh out of the forum unless he takes it repeatedly), he is more narcissistic and self absorbed than he ever was. You cannot even have a decent conversation with him and this was BEFORE I knew he was a Landmark devotee (of course now the conversation is all about how I refuse to change, mind you I don't feel pressured to take the forum by him but he has mentioned it a few times, I don't think he cares if I take it or not). I still wonder why he waited 8 months to confess he was into Landmark, I had asked him soooo many times why he was so different why he was acting so weird.... To him of course I cannot see his changes as being positive as I am not in the same reality as him (ie: take the forum and see what you are missing, um no thanks) My past and my hangups make me see his changes as negative (utter bullshit)

By the way I could not take the Forum even if I wanted to I am a hypoglycemic and I am an insomniac, so the wearing out of my brain most likely would not work, and of course I need to eat every 3 hours or so or I will pass out.... I have a real problem with authority and I cannot hold still in one of those chairs I would go bat shit crazy in less than a few hours...

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: margarets ()
Date: September 03, 2010 08:26AM

This is why your friend waited 8 months to mention Landmark: bait and switch.

If he'd called you up out of the blue to talk about Landmark right away, or even just very early on in the re-connection of the friendship, you would have twigged that something was up. Just as if he'd tried to sell you a car or get you to help him find a job or something.

So he laid the groundwork by acting like it was really all about the friendship (although it doesn't sound like he did a good job of that). Then, when your defenses have dropped a little, he starts in with the Landmark stuff. Because he's your "friend" you at least hear him out. That's the chink in the armour.

You don't have to try Landmark to see what it's all about any more than you have to try cocaine to see what that's like. (Actually I know someone who tried cocaine and said it was freaking awesome, and it scared him how much he liked it, so he never did it again.)

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: magpie ()
Date: September 03, 2010 09:12AM

Too bad he wasted 8 months, my defesnes could never get so low.... Especially since I have thought something was very wrong with his personality since day one of this "reconnection". I have respect for him and I think no less of him due to his involvement in Landmark I wish him happiness and success, I am a little sad as I do think things will one day come crashing in on him, but there is nothing I can do about it. I will be sure he knows if that ever happens I will be here, but as for us having a continuing relationship of any sort I just don't see that happening. I now understnd why he is soo off and it doesn't seem likely that his personality will return anytime soon if ever. How devastating it is to look upon it and be helpless. But I admit when I cannot prevail.

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: Martin N ()
Date: September 03, 2010 02:19PM

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magpie
Too bad he wasted 8 months, my defesnes could never get so low.... Especially since I have thought something was very wrong with his personality since day one of this "reconnection". I have respect for him and I think no less of him due to his involvement in Landmark I wish him happiness and success, I am a little sad as I do think things will one day come crashing in on him, but there is nothing I can do about it. I will be sure he knows if that ever happens I will be here, but as for us having a continuing relationship of any sort I just don't see that happening. I now understnd why he is soo off and it doesn't seem likely that his personality will return anytime soon if ever. How devastating it is to look upon it and be helpless. But I admit when I cannot prevail.

Magpie- you'd be surprised what people can take when they are committed to something they don't have, e.g. effecting change in their relationships to themselves or others. The men's groups I frequent now (can't name them as that's part of the agreement), unrelated to LE, also very much resemble their discussion structure, sharing like LE except no leader is present. Those who are VERY committed to effecting real change, succeed in it, despite never having even heard of the Forum. Thus I asserted, Forum is but one of many avenues to effect real behavioral change.

There are also people who have done the Forum who are in therapy currently - one of my group member's has done it, but sought therapy nonetheless. Apparently, the LE experience had an effect on him too as he is now dealing with breaking down old ingrained patterns of behavior that have this person be in a way that completely sets his life back. All of these people are more or less very educated, successful, but have some aspect of their life hidden/out of integrity/not working... without divulging details.

I would not use the cocaine analogy for LE as there is no addictive effects of doing the Forum. People keep coming back because they need encoragement to change their lives in the form of sharing, motivation, etc. Eventually they get off their ass and take action or get resigned and leave. If they take action, things move. If not, the status quo remains and they are back to square one.

Ultimately, I had to pull my own weight both in LE's work and therapy. Goals? 10x less arrogance (due to LE), and my relationship with my wife is awesome, no secrets or hiding any behaviors that compromise the integrity of the marriage and I feel 10x more connected to my colleagues, friends, church, etc. The latter was function of the therapists. The parallels between LE& psychology are striking but as I said, the two are unrelated in the final analysis. Both work on effecting radical behavioral change though that is where the similarities end.

Both only work if you want to alter behaviors toward a goal. For me the goals were intimacy, relatedness to others, drawing boundaries, not dissing myself, not trying to fix others (something ur friend hasn't learned yet) among others.

No one needs the forum- it is something you have to want to do. Only way to want to do it is if you don't see it as an end in and of itself. Think of what is the one thing you really want to transform about yourself, that you have failed to transform over and over, and then summon the courage and do it (or not). Only then can you see the value of something like the Forum, and never until then.

Your friend will eventually come off the higb once he stops being a landmark junkie and actually does something with what he got from the courses he has taken. In most people genuine transformation takes time, so give him some time and if it was meant to be he will get off it and u can be friends again without all the LE talk.

Hopefully this makes sensr :). If it doesn't then I apologize for the confusion guys.

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: Lars Bergwik ()
Date: September 03, 2010 05:31PM

Martin wrote: "You won't hear anything you don't already know in the Forum."
I do not think that is true. You will hear a lot of things out of the ordinary.

Martin wrote: "The only thing you will come out of the Forum with after you do it is a new perspective on your life experience, history, past."
Some people come out of it with severe mental problems dude.

Also I disagree with your view that it is impossible to research what the forum is. That is only a way to mystify the forum to make people say that "I must do it - it can't be that bad/good".

To anyone reading: DO NOT GET SUCKED INTO THE CULT LANDMARK! Too many have been hurt by them.
If you haven't read the whole post i repeat: I enrolled a person whom I thought could benefit from landmark. He ended up killing himself after suffering severe depression because he could not handle what the forum brought up for him. He is not the only one.

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Re: Getting back my life and thoughts after LGAT/ Landmark
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: September 03, 2010 06:07PM

'of course now the conversation is all about how I refuse to change'

Magpie, the conversation being all about how you refuse to change is pressure, subtle but persistant--the kind of drip, drip pressure that if allowed to continue will eventually have you believing that you are flawed in some mysterious way (that only Forum can point out to you) because you are resisting change.

This assumes that there is some attainable 'ideal way to be' that only Forum can elucidate and that when you reach that ideal--which recedes eternally into the distance like all ideals, no matter how much work you do or money that you pay----you will be perfect and live the dream.
This is a no-win scenario, except for the business that collects from every idealist that it ensnares.

Your friend is already ensnared and his conversation being all about how you refuse to change is an effort to displace his feelings of discomfort at being ensnared onto you.
If the focus is off of him and squarely on you as the flawed one then he can feel comfortably superior and delude himself for a moment that he is already perfect.
It gives him some momentary relief from the feelings of inferiority that he has aquired from being ensnared by this con game.

This twisted dynamic serves him, not you. It involves the recipient, you, being willing out of misplaced obligation, sympathy or kindness to take on his problems that he is projecting on to you.

Do not attempt to work out his problems or to do an amateur counselling job on him.

He is like the non-swimmer who, in his efforts to survive, will drown any swimmer who tries to help him. A trained life-guard is taught to knock out without hesitation or to leave such a person who is floundering in panic--- otherwise both are likely to drown.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/03/2010 06:11PM by Stoic.

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