Notice too how often the trainer interrupts the participant, trips her up when she's trying to say something. Distraction tactic.
John, you really nailed it, did us a service when writing,"the “logic” of the environment is used to replace the realities of this person’s experience."
This tactic, "using the logic of the environment" to replace the realities of the person's experience" --- this same tactic is used in Vajrayana Buddhism to justify why we need gurus and to get us to devalue and disown unethical behavior perpetrated by gurus and their acolytes.
This same trick is used by gurus, both Hindu and pseudo Hindu, and other belief systems as well.
I call it estrangement of our guts from our minds and trusting mere logic over instinct that something is just plain wrong.
Years ago there was a discussion abouty Landmark. We learned that Landmark agents may get special training on how to ignore all responses except a "Yes"
Go here and look for this story. The author named Sumerlin, is quoted as alleging that Landmark agents use specific methods, procedures, to manage anyone who says No. These agents look like and sound like responsive human persons but are not. They have been weaponized.
Here's what to read:
Here is how products of Werner Erhard's LGAT (Formerly est now Landmark)are trained.
This entire article is well worth reading.
Louisville's Liz Sumerlin first became aware of Landmark in 1991, after her then-fiancé enrolled in The Forum and began pressuring her and his family to sign up.
"The longer he stayed in it, the less I could talk to him," she recalls. "It was all psychobabble. We'd have a disagreement and he'd just dismiss anything he didn't want to hear by saying 'That's your story' or 'That's your racket.'"
"I found it strange that an organization that talks about how it's creating all these people who have empathy for their fellow man turns out all these people who don't want to communicate so that other people will understand them."
Sumerlin decided to find out everything she could about Landmark. A friend told her about a Wall Street Journal article, but when she tried to find it at the Denver Public Library, the microfiche had disappeared. However, a librarian there handed her a printout with a whole list of suggested reading, explaining that she had lost a relative to est.
"Apparently a lot of people were interested in the same thing I was," Sumerlin remembers. "I was really surprised by the amount of negative publicity."
She was also surprised by the nature of that publicity. "And what about Erhard?" she says, shaking her head. "They're always talking about how this will give you better, more loving relationships with people, but look at what a mess his family life was."
As her boyfriend got further into the organization, signing up for the leadership and self-expression program, Sumerlin agreed to attend an introductory course.
"They were just big sales pitches," she says. "We were whisked away into these back rooms where they try to get you to sign up. If you don't they want to know why. What's so great about your life that you don't want to improve it? Why do you have such a hard time committing to anything?"
"It's like shooting clay pigeons; there was always another question. They just try to wear you down."
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."
Our minds and guts are supposed to work as partners, in harmony, not be estranged from each other. Con artists get us to rely on logic at the expense of our guts.