Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: Cosmophilospher ()
Date: December 30, 2003 04:23PM

I find it fascinating, that it seems at the core of almost every "cult", is a sociopathic leader without a conscience, advertising himself as a "Holy Man" of some sort, when in reality these individuals are the most greedy, vicious, criminal, sadistic, sociopathic maniacs on the face of this earth.
I could list 100 of them off the top of my head.
They are all masters of manipulation and lies.

Whether its the Maharishi Mahesh Fakeyogi, or the Raelians, or Da Free John, or Landmark, etc etc etc.
It seems to always come down to some crazed, power-hungry psychopath who is just smart enough, and ruthless enough, to exploit the vulnerable, the weak and the gullible.

I guess it is just "logical" for them.
After all, why work hard for a living, and pay your taxes, when you can just start a tax-exempt "church" or company, and then get tons of easy money, easy sex, and live the Good Life, lording over your little tribe of acolytes.

I think there are deep sociobiological roots to all of this, both on the part of the "Leaders", and also on the part of the "followers" who have this deep need to follow, and be told what to think and do, and be a part of a group, even unto their own detriment.

After all, as primates, us humans feel the most comfortable in a Dominance Hierarchy.

One thing for certain.
Cults with be with us always.


Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: Cosmophilospher ()
Date: December 31, 2003 04:34AM

You make some really accurate points about Maharishi Mahesh Unyogi.
What you have said below is the Vision of the Narcissist.

Its like the Narcissist who happens to walk "on stage" or "on-camera", and feels the GLORY of being center-stage. They become addicted to it.

MMY saw the King Guru, being carried around and worshipped, and he went Ga-Ga for it. He must have thought, I MUST HAVE THAT. I WILL HAVE THAT.

This reminds me of Bertrand Russells wonderful book, "Power".
He makes the simple point that Power Hungry people end up attaining Power as they NEED and want it so bad, they will do anything to get it!

That is MM Unyogi's story.
The lust for Power, and the infinite cravings of the Narcissist.
Pure GREED and VANITY. (and lies and manipulation).

I guess these guys don't go and just start a Global Corporation in the business world, as that is too hard. Running a cult is much easier.
No money down, and they get treated like a God, and can have sex with the Free Employees.
Why run an actual business, when you can be a phony Man-God?
Like Hitler said, if you are going to lie, tell a BIG LIE.

The unmitigated gall of these Golden Gurus galls me.



But in MMY's case, it very much appears he craved power from the very start. According to Joyce Collin-Smith's account, MMY admitted he was inspired to become a monk when he saw the guru of his order being carried through the streets in a litter, surrounded by adoring crowds.

Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: Guy ()
Date: December 31, 2003 03:14PM

It is that knowledge of human mechanics that is used by the "enlightenment industry" to trick recruits into swallowing the worm.
LEC even states that it's programs come from it's understanding of human mechanics. Then while you're thinking that they are going to educate you about them, they just use them on you.



After all, as primates, us humans feel the most comfortable in a Dominance Hierarchy.

One thing for certain.
Cults with be with us always.


Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 01, 2004 12:44AM

Gurus actually live a rat-race existence.

I used to think they were coddled. But earlier this year I read a book by Len Oakes 'Prophetic Charisma.'

Oakes was able to interview 20(!) charismatic leaders of what we could call cults.

He discovered that none of them lived an easy life, though a number did have entourages. He won their trust and found that all of them had to be 'in control' at all times. They could not rest for one moment, because they had to monitor the group, just as carefully as the technicians must monitor the energy level of a nuclear reactor--if things get too hot, cool them down; if the energy level goes too low, stir things up again.

In an e-mail exchange, Len told me that NONE of the charismatic leaders he'd interviewed was capable of just enjoying life or other people 'in the moment.' They were working every angle, every waking breathing moment.

These people could, by a great paradox, create settings that enabled some of their followers to have genuine spiritual and psychological progress. But these leaders were, essentially empty unspiritual people--none of them could rest in the moment, in an agenda free manner.

Oakes lived on one such community and saw first hand the damage these people do--to themselves and to others. But, he found that essentially, they were pathetic and empty. Unlike their followers, they were incapable of simple human intimacy.

None of them had friends or partnered relationships on a peer basis that every achieved genuine intimacy.

They were charismatic, insightful, sometimes had genuine gifts as healers.

But they were incapable of true intimacy, true humanity.

Powerful, but not human.

Driven, prisoners of their myth, not spiritual at all.

We followers can at least walk away from the circus and start our lives anew.

These folks were just plain trapped.

They could speak of love and inspire love, but were incapsble of love.

Funny thing is, their disciples could give the very emotions these gurus could not:

Trust, love, compassion, empathy

I bet these folks need followers precisely because the followers supply the emotions the gurus cannot generate for themselves.

Its like needed to take a vitamin pill if your diet is deficient.

Through the genuine trust, love, intimacy and surrender of their followers, the gurus can feel temporarily 'whole' without paying the price in pain needed to work directly on themselves to become full human beings.

These conterfiets demand vulnerabilty from us followers, precisely because they are incapable of human vulnerability themselves and want us to supply a missing piece of themselves they refuse to develop on their own intiative.

Through our surrender and our trust, we give the guru a way to feel 'whole' which they do not have to earn themselves through honest inner work.

Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: elena ()
Date: January 01, 2004 04:52AM

What you've written dovetails with what Alexander Lowen talks about in his excellent little book,"Narcissism."

What he describes in the narcissistic character is a failure to develop empathy, sympathy, pity, or compassion for other people and the consequence for that being an inner life of isolation and paranoia, which is the flip side of empathy, being, in psychological terms, the projection of one's own motives onto others. The paranoid assume their own malevolent thoughts, feelings, and desires are universal, (Richard Nixon comes to mind), and in a funny way, their projections often become a self-fulfilling loop.

Early esties and Wernerites used to sneer with contempt at the mention of the word or the expression of a feeling of "sympathy." "Sympathy is for life's victims," was one of their mantras.

Is this still one of the linchpins of Landmark's philosophy? I suspect it is, being elemental to the whole of the thing, though I imagine they haved figured out a way to slap some cosmetic cover on it.


Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 01, 2004 11:29AM

out there...

some are covertly eager to find some way, any way to devalue compassion and empathy. Problematic LGATs are catnip for them.

Another constituency hungers for some way to justify abandoning any need to respect ethics, and some even look for ways to devalue consensual reality. What they want is something that justifies a return to magical thinking (eg 'You make your own reality' 'If you want it to be true, it becomes true' and 'Ethics are for inferior people, not for highly evolved people like me.'

Persons like this gravitate toward the really creepy set ups that are secretive, elitist, despise morality, despise 'conventional reality'.

One such cult centered on Carlos Castaneda, as described by Amy Wallace in her book The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

It was a playspace for narcissism/psychopathy of the most malignant kind.

Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: elena ()
Date: January 01, 2004 11:13PM

Leona Helmsly saying "Taxes are for the little people." hehehehe

A few people have called est/LEC "Catnip for the conceited."

It's pretty universal. We all want to think we are "special." Groups like Landmark capitalize on this yearning and make big bucks by pandering to the ego and to vanity. Some ex-scientologist has said: "They treat losers like winners." Unfortunately, the "winners" are Ayn Randian-type, "self-actualized" a**holes.

Though there will always be a sociopathic segment of society, the
so-called human predators, the tragedy of groups like Landmark and all of its clones is that they push "normal" people and thus, all of us, further along the path to self-centeredness, self-absorption, narcissism, and ruthlessness. As Christopher Lasch pointed out in his excellent book, "The Culture of Narcissism," hard to say if Werner Erhard wasn't just in the right place at the right time. Perhaps some other time his message may have fallen on deaf ears.


Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: Hope ()
Date: January 02, 2004 01:07AM

Corboy and Elena,

For people considering doing an LGAT, what is written here might seem confusing. How can a program that is supposed to boost the ego do damage?

Just like a cult, they lure you in (love bomb) by telling you how special you are to take on the work involved. My naturopath also did this - so heads up for folks in cult-like relationships. But under the guise of "losing the ego" to reveal the true "Self" or hidden emotions that are holding participants back, self-esteem is covertly diminished or destroyed. There are posts on dissociation, depersonalization, concentration syndrome that show exactly what happens when one miraculously "completes the past" in one weekend.

Add to this that these leaders are charismatic so it LOOKS like they are doing their jobs out of compassion for all the suffering masses. As I learned from my naturopath, who learned from LEC and God knows where else, and from reading the many articles here, a participant\patient\disciple's health and well being is low priority. Those who suffer are devalued and dumped because they are not being responsible and not contributing to the group or relationship anymore. The perpetrator will go to great lengths to explain away fact or just disappear in order to look good and avoid responsibility. Now where exactly did I hear that before???

Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: Cosmophilospher ()
Date: January 02, 2004 06:17AM

Its interesting to see the TOTAL lack of concern and empathy displayed by the Landmarkians on this forum. They have contempt for people who are "stupid" enough to get tricked by Landmark. Their basic response is, "WHO CARES?".

They want to have a "Master Morality" as opposed to a "Slave Morality".
People with Antisocial Personality Disorder, basically believe that life is a Jungle, that "you better get them before they get you", and that if you are "weak", you will be hurt by others.
So if its a world of Social Darwinism, then they can rationalize it by saying, "hey, that's just the way the world is".

I have known some people (in my family) who are now in jail, and have undiagnosed Antisocial Personality Disorder.
They literally believe THEY are the victims of the malicious people who pressed charges against them for abusing them!
These people who go and hurt others, many times believe they are "defending" themselves.
So they have a twisted rationalization.

But they make a more fundamental error.
They miss the basic fact talked about by Daniel Goleman.

Emotional Intelligence.

A part of Emotional Intelligence, is learning how to get along with other people on an emotional level. You have EMPATHY for other people.
What these scoundrels are too foolish to learn, is that over time, you can become MORE SUCCESSFUL by practicing Empathy for others. People start to respect you, and do repeat business with you, and some might even love you.

But if you practice the sociopathic method of Hubbard/Erhard/Maharishi, then you end up living on a ship on the high seas, or in a 3rd world country. These people shoot themselves in the foot, and their negative core beliefs about other people become a self-fulfilling prophecy. They destroy themselves, and everyone around them.

In my view, the key is to have Empathy for others, yet at the same time be smart enough not to be tricked by the small minority of conmen, scammers, and cultists out there.

I think it was Ben Franklin, or Shaw, someone, who talked about how if "rascals" could see that they would be more successful, and get more of what they want in life by being honorable, then they wouldn't have to be "rascals".

Enlightened Self-Interest.
You don't have to be Mother Theresa, or the Dalai Lama.

But this sociopathic view of people, and totaly lack of Empathy and concern for others, truly ends up harming everybody in a vicious circle.
The bad news is that sociopaths, and people with Antisocial Personalities don't seem to get better with treatment. There are studies that show that "therapy" makes them WORSE.
The blunt reality is that most of these guys seem to go to their grave with their beliefs unchanged, solidified, and intact. And they often take many others down with them.


Centerpointe Awakening
Posted by: kico ()
Date: January 02, 2004 10:42AM

Early esties and Wernerites used to sneer with contempt at the mention of the word or the expression of a feeling of "sympathy." "Sympathy is for life's victims," was one of their mantras.

Is this still one of the linchpins of Landmark's philosophy? I suspect it is, being elemental to the whole of the thing, though I imagine they haved figured out a way to slap some cosmetic cover on it.

Yes, Ellen, I recall several times we were told to disrespect or disregard 'feelings' or ‘emotion’ by the Forum Leaders.

Emotion/feeling in Landmark is a sign of weakness, racket or winning formula/strong suit.


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