Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: October 18, 2003 01:09AM

We have been hearing great things about you, Guy, thanks to material of yours that Elena has found on one of the Google listserves.


Now, my question: Does your group have special 'celebrity protocols' set up to accommodate ultra-desirable recruits who are mental health professionals, university professors, etc? (as well as the stray top-earning world famous movie star/pop singer?)

A man who was a member of a yoga cult in New York and left after becoming a social worker (he realized that the ethics of social work conflicted with the slavishness,manipulation and deceit that operated on a day to day basis at the ashram) reported that the cult had special workshops to teach disciples who were mental health professionals various ways to bring their clients into the cult.

Do you know if your group has a similar strategy? If so, one could expect that celebrities and mental health professionals would be routied to sessions with especially skilled and persuasive traingers and enjoy especially good treatment--versus more abusive experiences that lowlier folks have reported.

This concerns me, because I dont think health care pros (esp psychotherapists and students-in-training) appreciate the extent to which they may be targeted for recruitment into bad groups--and get atypically favorable treatment.

Problem is once you are in a bad group, it disrupts the critical thinking needed to function as an ethical professional--you lose your capacity to monitor boundaries because the group becomes exempt from scrutiny and you cannot imagine your clients being harmed because you were not harmed. The stage is set for a well intentioned but naive therapist to recruit his or her clients into the cult.

And because these franchises are good at invoking the First Amendment, many professional organizations have not yet issued firm guidelines prohibiting therapists from recruting clients into cults, churches,ashrams, etc.

Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: Guy ()
Date: October 19, 2003 06:56AM


When do replies show up here on the page?

Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: sunsetserene ()
Date: November 05, 2003 08:26AM

Hi Corboy & Guy:

I didn't know how to directly reply to Guy, so I apologize for the inconvenience.

First off: Great site. I lost a friend a few years ago to Landmark. I'd never heard of them, and so at her urging I attended the introductory meeting. The speakers were very effective, and I have to admit that there were some intriguing points I ultimately declined. I didn't find the Ross site until much later, but by then my friend was totally indoctrinated and not open to any criticism of landmark. I don't deny that some may have had some good from their experience, but based on the research I've seen there seems a high price beyond the 350 dollars.

To Guy especially: I found your original posts electrifying and they rang very true to me. I majored in psychology, learned hypnosis, and read many books already mentioned here...Cults in Our Midst, Outrageous Betrayal...various social psy. texts and so on, but I had no idea! I was dumbfounded how my friend was able to make me truly start to question my stand and my motives for criticizing Landmark. I truly began to wonder if I wasn't the "crazy" one. And because the her former credibility I actually signed up for the forum, but after Mr. Ross's site I quickly cancelled and screened all of my calls thanks to the warnings about phone harassment described here and elsehere.

I mean this dead seriously: You should be a featured key-note speaker at universities. You clearly already have a gift for both spoken and written communications. I strongly encourage you to speak at universities and anywhere else that they'll have you, for nearly everyone who I've encountered has no conception of how cults and similar approach new people. They think they'll be able to recognize cult recruiters as if they are like the ridiculously obvious villains on the Indiana Jones movies or similar.

After I read Singer's book I realized just how wrong they and I were.

You've done a truly great service for humanity, and I offer you my most sincere thanks. I'll never forget how they turned my loving friend into a wierdly defensive stranger when it came to Landmark. Our last conversation was so unlike the ones we'd had for so many years. She was so defensive and annoyed, and it was clear that disagreeing with her was futile. She'd been a very idealistic new age, former Catholic, and educated with a degree in psychology, very smart and professional, beloved of all with a magnetic personality . Yet she had always felt empty somehow, and she had always been searching for meaning, purpose and a way to channel those into some dream job that she could never quite define yet always yearned for most painfully. Sadly Landmark to her seemed the solution that she had always sought.

Since then I've become fascinated with how people can be so manipulated. I read a few books and was appalled at what there was so easily to learn. I offer the following books for those who are interesed in innoculating themselves against such things although I've only scratched the surface: "The Art of Seduction," by Greene and "Never be Lied to Again" and "Get Anyone to Do Anything and Never Feel Powerless Again" both by Dr. Liebermann, Ph.D. They're all meant to help people recognize and resist being played, though like any tool some very well have used the knowledge for ill.

I really don't have anything new or unique to say that hasn't been here already, so I cannot imagine that I'd have much else worth contributing here. But I wanted to thank you and put in my two cents worth...for what it's worth to anyone.

Thanks again,


Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 05, 2003 12:28PM

I had a correspondance with a woman who had been friends with a professor in the psychology department at a prestigious state university. Her pal was recruited by an LGAT and when my informant refused to get involve with the LGAT, her friend dumped her.

I appreciate your kind words. I'm not very good as a public speaker.

Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: sunsetserene ()
Date: November 06, 2003 11:40AM


Sorry I wasn't more clear, but I actually was talking about Guy doing some public speaking.

As for my ex friend the irony is that she asked me to help her research how to become a seminar arranger (or whatever you call them) at her local library shortly before her transformation for lack of a better word.

It all started shen she went to a Shakti Gawain seminar (one of the legion of new age speakers/authors) in Hawaii, and from that point on she wanted to be involved in something similar. So when Landmark mentioned volunteering and perhaps evening leading seminars I'm sure she thought it was a sign from whatever gods may be that she' d finally found her niche in life.

I know that right after her landmark experience she seemed to be filled with an astonishing amount of nervous energy and sounded almost giddy at times like she was high or something. Immediateily after she took the advanced session subsequent mornings she practically flew out of bed much earlier. She'd always felt guilty about sleeping in late because she'd never been a morning person but wished that she was. She was getting up earlier doing yoga, meditation and whatever else struck her fancy, and naturally, she was intent on sharing the forum with the whole world. I'm not qualified to speak on the goodness or badness of that. I simply chose not to attend based on what I read here and elsewhere. Sometimes I wonder still if I was the "crazy" one; but I'll stick with my own ways as I'm not into spilling my guts in front of 100 plus strangers. I'm old fashioned, and I feel that there's just someting completely undignified about that.

I remember when one of my last remaining old friends from highschool got involved in scientology. It was much the same. He too was always one of the walking wounded, with the kind of wounds you never see from wanting to be and do great things. He too yearned to belong to something bigger than himself. I'd never heard of the COS either. But I took out the book Bald [or Bare?] Faced Messiah and read up on it. By then my friend was so happy that I just didn't have the heart to be a wet blanket, but after a couple of years he realized he'd made a mistake and left them.

It's strange how both of them changed so radically almost overnight. There's a book called "Snapping" that seems to address the phenomena that I plan to borrow from the library some time when I have time. Well, that's about it for me here.
I doubt that I have anything new or original to share, but I may pop in now and then.

Just doing some thinking out loud. I'm sure you've heard all of this before, and you don't feel obligated to reply unless you have something to say. Peace.


Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: Normal Guy ()
Date: November 15, 2003 11:04PM

I've been studying up on the message boards and Landmark survivor testimonials ever since a friend got involved and I personally witnessed an "introduction meeting". It was then that I saw something much more sinister then participants simply flushing their $400 enrollment fee down the toilet. Nobody on the message boards seems to be following the money trail further along into the depths of the seminar. I believe there is fraud and conspiracy and racketeering engulfing the seminar. Out of the five "Landmarkians" I personally spoke to, I discreetly found that they all had one thing in common- they had all just purchased new homes. What is Landmark Forum? My answer- product placement via 'tele-friend-marketing'. Landmark even acknowledges their product placement company affiliations deep in the depths of their officially rancktorious website (check the "businesses" section for some uncannded disclosures). What is a "breakthrough"? Well fill in the blank- "breakthrough"= any product you thought you couldn't afford yesterday. The complicit moderators seated in the back of the room? Is anyone suspicious of the notes that the moderators DO take in the class? Recording participants intimate disclosures and life goals? These moderators are nothing more then shadow salespeople, seriptisiously collecting your valuable marketing information. And at follow up seminars such as the advanced course, they are perfectly poised to swoop in for the kill. They don't care so much about continuing enrollment fees of $400, rather they are there with the goal of selling large ticket items, ie., homes, dream vacations, and loans. The more debt they can entrap you in, supports their cause. Your new landmark "friends" wont hesitate to sell you any "possibility" you want. And should you succomb to their weekend retreat of subtle inuendo brainwash and find yourself unable to communicate to the outside world due to extensive vocabulary reprogramming, well at least you will have a new group of friends who share your language. Hey, and if you need a job, the founder might even be able to hook you up. He was after all a used car salesman. Is this not racketeering?

Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: Guy ()
Date: November 17, 2003 03:04PM

To Sunsetserene,
Thank you for reading my posts elsewhere. I've elaborated, as best I could at the time, about what takes place at LEC. You can send me a private message through this board if you wish.

To GC4062,
Keep yelling. The more of us that speak out, the warmer it will get in here and other places. I hope more join in. Thanks for speaking out

To Normal Guy,
We had a policy of keeping outside business interests out of our confines. Not that it didn't happen. Anything that would get in the way of our own revenue streams was strictly taboo.
We were very careful about outside affiliations.

For all :
Read William Sargent's "Battle for the Mind", Robert Cialdini's "Influence", and "The Guru Papers" by Alstad and Kramer.
You'll find plenty of information about how this stuff gets replicated over and over.

Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: sunsetserene ()
Date: December 03, 2003 01:06PM


I've been doing some research since my last post. I've since read both Outrageous Betrayal and also the '95 edition of Cults in Our Midst. I too highly recommend them. Accordingly I've discovered three other books that many may find useful:

1--"Never Be Lied to Again" by Lieberman

2--"Get Anyone to Do Anything and Never Feel Powerless Again"--also by Lieberman

3--"The Art of Seduction" by Robert Greene.

The first two deal with straight forward methods to recognize and thwart manipulation. They also train you how to use it--hopefully--only for noble purposes, although any tool can be used for ill.

Art of Seduction is rather thick, and I haven't finished it. But I thought you might find the following interesting. The outline of seduction described in Greene's book.

I have a few observations in brackets [], but otherwise it is without comment.

I encourage you all--especially Guy and the other person who actually worked for LEC to comment on each point insofar as how it may apply in the context of LEC manipulation methodology. The outline is as follows:

1--Choose the right victim: Study your prey, for the right victims are those for whom you can fill a void.

[My friend clearly was convinced that LEC could fill the void that she'd had all of her life.]

2--Create a false sense of security: Approach indirectly. The "seduction" should begin at an agnle so that the "target" only gradually becomes aware of you. Haunt the periphery of your target's life.

[Perhaps the strategy of having a loved one or trusted associated "sell" it is a way to approach indirectly and then pounce after it's too late?]

3--Send mixed signals: A mix of qualities suggests depth which fascinates us as it confuses.

[Forum speak? The graduate's "inability" to articulate just exactly what they went through? The rift that seems to develop? Tell them just enough and then let their own imagination do the rest?]

4--Appear to be an object of desire: Make your targets hungry It will become a point of vanity for them to be preferred objects of your attention.

[Make them hungry to emulate you; be like you are. Perhaps the shunning that happens may be a reverse-psychology version of this?]

5--Create a need--Stir anxiety and discontent. A perfectly satisfied person cannot be seduced.

[Hence make newbees think the forum is the answer to everything and throw in some sobbing schills for mood and atmosphere?]

6--Master the art of insinuation: Create a sublanguage--bold statements followed by retraction and apology; banal talk combined with alluring glances. Make everything suggestive.

[Forum speak--imply profundity, tell them just enough and then let their own imagination do the rest of the work--sort of like "sell the sizzle instead of the steak?"

7--Enter their spirit: Play by your targets' rules. In doing so you will stroke their deep-rooted narcissism and lower their defenses.

8--Create temptation: Lure the target by creating a glimpse of the pleasures to come.

[Steak/Sizzle again?]

OK, It's late. I'm tired of typing. I'll include the remaining 16 outline points in subsequent post(s) if warranted.

By the way, I loved the examples of manipulative forum speak you two provided--very revealing. You two exude much credibility.

And for Corboy, if you wish to be perhaps less susceptible to covert hypnosis techniques I'd be happy to share some insights from the perspective of somebody who learned hypnosis method while an undergraduate, for whatever that's worth.

Best wishes,


Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: sunsetserene ()
Date: December 04, 2003 11:21AM

Hi gc4062!,

Holy smokes!

That is some fascinating stuff! I'll post a more lengthy reply once I've had a chance to reread your post a couple of time and mull it over. You've given me much food for thought.

I don't feel I can do it justice just right now so I'll take a rain check.

In the future I will share the subsequent 16 points of seduction as per the "Art of Seduction" once these first 8 seem discussed enough.

Regardless I seem to have inadertently provided a good structure for discussing manipulation techniques in the context of the LEC forum . I think I'll stick with this format for the subsequent discussions too.


Now if I could only figure out how to include the emoticons...


Question for Guy Fawkes--Man Who Came in From the Cold
Posted by: sunsetserene ()
Date: December 05, 2003 07:19AM

Hi SS,

I look forward to the balance of the 16 points.

What I posted for you is just a launching point for discussion. With the other folks who are regular posters here, we can flesh it out even further. Methinks we are about to open up the book of dirty tricks for all to see ;)

I too am very curious to see what insights and experiences Guy, Hope, and others have to share.

Rest assured when these first 8 point seem properly dissected then I'll present the next 8 and then finally the last 8.


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