The six links I offered that "Skeptikk" refers to in his last post were actually to a wide array of reference material.
Only one, regarding a working definition for the word "cult," was written by me.
The Ross Institute database contains thousands of articles and documents, and very few were written by me.
My writings are on the Op/Ed weblog CultNews.com.
Sterling has a deeply troubled history of bad press and complaints.
Sterling and his "weekend" have been reported about in Details Magazine, the San Jose Mercury News and NBC News in NYC and LA.
See "Press" at [www.culteducation.com
The "Cushman paper" Skeptikk" refers to offers historical reasons and research regarding mass marathon training like Sterling's weekend, and why they often hurt people and represent a potential risk.
There is much more offered by Cushman than what "Skeptikk" cites. Such as the following:
They lack adequate participant-selection criteria.
They lack reliable norms, supervision, and adequate training for leaders.
They lack clearly defined responsibility.
They sometimes foster pseudoauthenticity and pseudoreality.
They sometimes foster inappropriate patterns of relationships.
They sometimes ignore the necessity and utility of ego defenses.
They sometimes teach the covert value of total exposure instead of valuing personal differences.
They sometimes foster impulsive personality styles and behavioral strategies.
They sometimes devalue critical thinking in favor of "experiencing" without self-analysis or reflection.
They sometimes ignore stated goals, misrepresent their actual techniques, and obfuscate their real agenda.
They sometimes focus too much on structural self-awareness techniques and misplace the goal of democratic education; as a result participants may learn more about themselves and less about group process.
They pay inadequate attention to decisions regarding time limitations. This may lead to increased pressure on some participants to unconsciously "fabricate" a cure.
They fail to adequately consider the "psychonoxious" or deleterious effects of group participation (or] adverse countertransference reactions. (1969, p. 13)
Another area of concern regarding mass marathon training is coercive persuasion.
Many complaints about Sterling cite this as a serious concern.
Coercive persuasion or "thought reform" is substantially different from education, advertising, religious indoctrination, propaganda etc.
Though Sterling is not a "cult," it does seem to be a destructive group, with its core format essentially copied from EST/Landmark Education, which is another controversial large group awarness training seminar with a deeply troubled history.