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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: December 31, 2012 07:50AM

Another published account regarding a Lifespring participant's experience. The participant is the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Excerpted material about Lifespring.

See []

The Nominee's Soul Mate

Washington Post/eptember 10, 1991

By Laura Blumenfeld

Who's afraid of Virginia Thomas? She's a soft-spoken, hard-working daughter of the heartland. A brainy Omaha lawyer who has scaled the sheetrock of professional Washington. A churchgoer who invites homeless people out to lunch. A good friend. A good family. Why the fuss over Mrs. Supreme Court Nominee?

"My real question is, Why me?" said Virginia Thomas, when asked for an interview. She has declined to talk with reporters until after the hearings. She's not the story, she said. Yet she is a compelling and persuasive figure.

"The one person {Clarence Thomas} really listens to is Virginia," said longtime friend Evan Kemp, chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. "He depends on her for advice."

During the early '80s, Thomas enrolled in Lifespring, a self-help course that challenges students to take responsibility for their lives. Most of the program's 300,000 graduates have found it be a favorable experience. There are, however, a small percentage of clients who are deeply disturbed by Lifespring's methods, which involve intense emotional self-examination.

Thomas told a Washington Post reporter in 1987 that she was confused and troubled by some of Lifespring's exercises. In one session, trainees listened to "The Stripper" while disrobing to skimpy bikinis and bathing suits. The group stood in a U-shaped line, made fun of fat people's bodies and riddled one another with sexual questions.

"At first Ginni was feeling pretty good and enthusiastic about Lifespring," recalls her minister, the Rev. Rodney Wilmoth of Omaha's St. Paul United Methodist Church, who corresponded with Thomas at the time. "But later she was concerned about its influence and began to sense the organization had a cultlike mentality."

Terry Nelson, vice president of Lifespring, said the group is not a cult and that Virginia Thomas's account of the training exercises has been taken out of context. "Are our people enthusiastic, intense and emotional? Yes," Nelson said.

Bronson Levin, a clinical psychologist in Bailey's Crossroads and a Lifespring graduate who specializes in treating what he calls "casualties," said people who are not prepared for the intense emotional experience of Lifespring or who have hidden traumas tend to become overwhelmed as childhood memories come thundering back to them during training.

"I remember Ginni felt manipulated by the group," Wilmoth said. "She was losing her own freedom of who she was."

It took Thomas months to break fully from Lifespring's "high-pressure tactics," she told The Post in 1987. "I had intellectually and emotionally gotten myself so wrapped up with this group that I was moving away from my family and friends and the people I work with. My best friend came to visit me and I was preaching at her using that rough attitude they teach you."

Finally, Daub, Thomas's boss, confronted her. "We talked about it and ultimately she thought it through and took action to extricate herself," Daub said.

Thomas contacted Kevin Garvey, a Connecticut stockbroker turned counselor, who gets a steady stream of referrals from psychologists and physicians.

"I got a phone call from her asking for help," Garvey recalled. He met with her from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Hamburger Hamlet in Georgetown on a Sunday afternoon in 1984, he said, and left feeling satisfied that the young woman would be all right. "The picture of her as a totally destroyed individual is not true," he said.

Thomas felt guilty about breaking her Lifespring "commitment," she said in the 1987 interview. She hid out in another part of the country to avoid constant phone calls from fellow trainees who felt it was their responsibility to make Thomas keep her commitment to Lifespring.

Her friends describe her as levelheaded, thoughtful, smart. Her involvement with Lifespring baffles them. But at least one close friend had an inkling.

"There's a kind of naivete about her, a kind of innocence you have to be careful with," said Wilmoth, her minister. "Ginni is a very, very trusting person -- she once invited a homeless man out to lunch with her in a fancy Washington restaurant -- I'm sure that's one of the reasons she was very susceptible to this group. She was looking for spiritual growth and trusted those people would do the right thing."

Cult Awareness

Since 1985 Ginni Thomas has been a public advocate against cult activities. She has attended Cult Awareness Network conventions, including the 1990 convention in Chicago, according to Patricia Ryan, who is the organization's president and the daughter of Leo Ryan, the congressman killed at Jonestown, Guyana. Thomas has spoken on panels and organized anti-cult workshops for congressional staffers in 1986 and 1988.

"Ginni feels she has been personally victimized and feels a responsibility to educate others," Ryan said.

CAN, however, has had its own share of trouble. Religious liberty advocates accuse it of supporting deprogrammers who kidnap members of religious groups and coerce them to undergo treatment. CAN's adversaries have included fundamentalist Christian splinter groups, the Church of Scientology and the Unification Church.

CAN officials maintain that cults tried to stifle Thomas's activities while she worked at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as a labor relations attorney during the mid-'80s. Fred Krebs, Thomas's supervisor, confirmed receiving letters objecting to her involvement in anti-cult work. He declined to name the group that sent the letters but said, "Ginni was very careful not to identify herself with the Chamber while pursuing her anti-cult activities."

CAN officials said cult groups are trying to use Virginia Thomas's involvement with the network to torpedo her husband's nomination.

"If Ginni is the wife of a Supreme Court justice, it's probably a little scary for the cults," Ryan said.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/31/2012 07:51AM by rrmoderator.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: December 31, 2012 08:37AM


"All I am saying is that was not what happened to me nor anyone else I observed "?

I have posted some news accounts, a court record and another study done by mental health professionals, which all point up the same pattern of problems, which are inherently present in the training.

It seems that the only thing you are concerned with though is "subjective experience". That is, if it makes you feel good it doesn't matter what has happened to others. But the historical record speaks for itself despite your selfish interests and bias.

As you readily admit there is no objective study of scientifically measurable results produced by the training. This seems odd given the millions collected by the LGAT industry from customers and the decades they have done business. But as you admit they have "none". An explanation for this complete lack of supporting research and evidence of benefits is that LGATs know they don't produce any meaningful objective results and therefore have no interest in paying researchers to demonstrate this fact.

You said that your "biggest complaint is that the ideas [of Lifespring] are based on the latest psychological research...of forty years ago." This is an interesting statement. Lifespring training is somehow based upon "psychological research"? Does this mean that the company is engaged in the practice of psychology without a license? And that the training is essentially group encounter or therapy sessions led by unqualified facilitators? Lifespring leaders are not licensed credentialed professionals and have no meaningful accountability to an outside licensing board, e.g. a state board of behavioral health.

However, Philip Cushman is an expert in psychology and you have attempted to dismiss his work. Apparently when there is credible psychological research, which confronts you with an analysis that contradicts your "experence" and "sbujective feelings" it must be dismissed.

You mention the "specialized language" of the LGAT, but then bush it off "silly". Actually this is what psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton refers to as "loaded language" in his seminal work "Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalsim". It is evidence of a thought reform program being used by a group or leader.

See []

"The language of the totalist environment is characterized by the thought-terminating cliché. The most far-reaching and complex of human problems are compressed into brief, highly reductive, definitive-sounding phrases, easily memorized and easily expressed. These become the start and finish of any ideological analysis."

Your posts have been helpful to this thread, though not in the way you apparently intended. What they demonstrate is the same LGAT spin and mindset, which is consistent with research about LGATs and the statements of other LGAT devotees posting at this message board

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: December 31, 2012 09:45AM

The dialogue started here by NMC can be found and read by anyone who is alert and runs a Google search on MTT/Lifespring.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: righttofight ()
Date: December 31, 2012 10:04PM

Hey Minor Nuisance,

You sound like a shill for MITT to me. Why would you register into a cult awareness web site which clearly MITT is a cult by definition and start this contentious dialogue?

You obviously select which points to discount or dissect because essentially you are logged on to protect this cult group. My own story was not a sordid "one off". There was countless stories of people getting harrassed by MITT to continue training at the risk of their welfare. What do you expect of an uneducated Dutch immigrant, hairdresser who put her savings into speaker equipment and rent deposits for the LA Convention Center. Pays the leader a percentage plus fee. 500 bucks times 100 people is 50 grand less rent, speaker fee and misc utility charges - someone with no background in psychology and zero conscience that has the will to exploit people's weaknesses without government regulation can make a lot of money - figure this dutch woman - Margo - pays out 30 percent in training costs - she's probably taking in 35 grand for one weekend of training zombies to bring in more money for her. The numbers are there to make a huge financial killing in this LGAT business. It's sick and should be regulated but there are powerful factions that want to keep this unregulated.

As for you: It's obvious when someone starts playing this intellectual "ping pong", they're trying to neutralize a very dangerous organization.

I do appreciate reading Corboy and the moderator.

Lifespring and MITT are the same. Just different scumbag operators but they use the same training techniques. They even organize their structure the same. 500 dollar beginning weekend. Advance marathon. Legacy weeks of indoctrination.

Hopefully someone who is thinking of taking these LGATS will read this and bail out of the idea. That's my hope.

As for Minor Pain, I would drive down to Marina Del Rey and demand your money back.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 01, 2013 03:38AM

Common 'games' shared by Lifespring and other LGATs, such as the Red Black game


A detailed description of the Red Black game as used in a different group, and how people were kept awake past midnight.


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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 01, 2013 03:49AM

"Always vote black when playing the Red Black game"



Red-black game (was Re: [psychohistory] The Prisoners' Dilemma) < Prev Next >
Posted By: madfedor madfedor Send Email
Mon Aug 2, 2004 8:21 pm |
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A variation of this was used by a self-actualization course (an offshoot
of EST) called Lifespring. I experienced it first-hand about 25 years ago.

Red-Black Game.

Two teams consisting of an equal number on each team.

1) All members of a team must vote.
2) The team vote is not valid unless it is unanimous.
3) Each scoring round cannot end unless rules 1 and 2 are satisfied.
3) Vote scoring:
a) If both teams vote red, each team is penalized 20 points
b) If the vote is red-black, the red team scores 120 points, the black
team is penalized 50 points.
c) If both teams vote black, each team scores 50 points.

(I don't remember the numbers exactly, but the numbers I used are correct
for the process.)

The object is to score the maximum number of points, not caveats or

The obvious, rational implication is that in order to fulfill the object,
both teams must vote black every round. This is a group dynamics
demonstration more than a rational thougth process. The solution is for at
least one person to withhold hir vote unless both teams unanimously vote
for black.


Cult Education Forum :: Large Group Awareness Training, "Human

...The votes for black outnumbered red by about 2:1. The staffer came ... We took
the vote again with the majority voting black. Again the staffer ...,31055 - 78k - Cached - Similar pages

Re: PSI Seminars, James Ray Death Lodge, LGAT seminars - Cult ...

Always vote black when playing the Red-Black game. The purpose is for each
side to win, thus receiving 3 points each. The is the game that Always vote black when playing the Red-Black game. The purpose is for each side to win, thus receiving 3 points each. The is the game that teaches Win-Win.

If each side doesn't vote black, the facilitators and PSI slaves enthusiastically urge you on to vote RED, then castigate you for being greedy, selfish, ..etc i.
...,24037,77645 - 41k - Cached - Similar pages

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MITT -- still around
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: May 02, 2014 11:40PM

Someone posted a query about MITT on another part of the message
board (destructive churches)

Here is a link to that person's post.


That way, anyone interested in MITT can access this and
the more recent query.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: RayBell ()
Date: August 11, 2017 01:02PM

MITT has lost its incorporated status from the state of CA and has an F from the BBB. Their trainers have moved to San Diego creating the Ascension Leadership Academy. They have been sucking in 200 people a month for a little over a year now. Three of my friends are going through their "trainings" and have aggressively attempted to recruit me. It got to the point I had to block them.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: righttofight ()
Date: August 11, 2017 09:15PM

Hey Thanks Ray Bell

for that epilogue!

Figures this disgusting organization would implode. Also disgusting they abused corporate laws in California.

It's legalized bullying. The trainers are not trainers. They're bully experts. Sick organization. Hope Margo is in jail.

She pushed a felon to destroy my property. She hired an ex FBI agent to infiltrate my home. She's a sick piece of work. All because I bailed out of the highest level and went surfing. Then told my gf who she badly wanted to use for organization to resist.

If I had legal strength back then I could have bankrupted her. But . . .

That's how they work. They prey on weakness. We need legislation that outlaws these LGATs.

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Re: MITT Today
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 11, 2017 09:55PM

Take a look at the recent threads on this LGAT page.

Track the names of the MITT trainers.

They may be creating franchises under new names or get talent spotted
by existing ones.

Glad to see you, righttofight! (wave)

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