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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: AreinaRyu ()
Date: October 17, 2010 07:56AM

More can be found here:

thank you. have you heard anything about the follow-up courses to Choices, Givers I & II?

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: AwarenessGuy ()
Date: April 13, 2011 07:15AM

The 4-day LGAT description at the top of this thread was not written by Jan Groenvald. I wrote it in 1997 after going to a "Basic". I also created and hosted The Awareness Page for many years. I spent countless hours researching, scanning, and OCRing dissertations and articles, many which were copied and hosted here. (Ok by me). This is all for YOUR benefit. Stay the F away from these things and get some legitmate psychotherapy if you need help.

That "Basic" was held in the second week of July 1997 at the Holiday Inn Riverfront in downtown St Louis Missouri. The org was Phoenix 2000 (a Lifespring clone), formerly Phoenix Seminars and now Phoenix Arises Seminars. The owner/trainer at the time was Martha Borst. (resistance is futile, you will be assimilated)

MoDOT shutdown Interstate 70 into downtown on Day 2, Friday evening causing many late arrivals. The runner between rooms in the Red/Black game (actually they used the colors Red and Blue) was Jaimes McNeal from Lifespring Chicago. It was his first time staffing Phoenix. He is now the owner/operator of Phoenix Arises.

These things can be an extremely intense emotional assault on your psyche. Buyer beware. Don 't be so sure you can put yourself back together afterward without some help.

Dave in St Louis

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: righttofight ()
Date: April 13, 2011 08:56PM

Very good stuff and totally true. I would get help after visiting one of these things. I was in a thing called MITT in LA run by a fat, ignorant, mean Dutch hairdresser. It's comical. But very sad. She would berate people with no money who put their rent payment into doing the seminars. "Why don't you go find the money to move ahead? Do you want to be losers all your life?" She was a piece of work. I rose up. Then got kicked out in the Legacy group for chewing gum. My girlfriend who was also in it was manipulated into going back to her felon, gang member ex. They liked him better because he was easily duped and was the enforcer. They would call her at home. Arrange events for just the two of them. I went down to this Dutch woman's office to confront her about this. She threw me out. I checked with various shrinks about how rescue this girlfriend. It was futile. Some people are easily suckered into these LGATS. It will affect you no matter how strong you are. I was affected. Took me a while to shake it off. And I'm pretty analytical, pretty assertive. I'm glad I'm not with that girl. She was weak and wanted to believe this manipulation was the answer. A lot of people who check into these deals are looking for quick fixes to life's problems. They are not people you want to associate with anyway. These LGATS just abuse people who already abused. Sick formula for making money.

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: dirtbikes1 ()
Date: August 24, 2014 02:12AM

Phoenix Arises Seminars was taken over by Jo Rossi and is now called I wish I would have found this forum BEFORE my wife took one of these courses. Luckily I saw through the BS, researched the company and members, found this page, and got her the F out of there! Beware if you are in St. Louis MO. This LGAT company is a rehashed version of Lifespring. The above experience is almost exactly to a tee what my wife went through. Thank you so much for this website.

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This stuff can throw anyone off balance-U are lucky
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 25, 2014 07:10AM

Dear DB1:

You are both very lucky.

The Large Group Awareness Training (LGAT) is a complex mix.

The word games are just one ingredient.

LGATS also hit people's bodies -- and that is a component
few are aware of.

Here is a discussion on 'Manipulating the Room Environment'.


Various members on this message board instigated this discussion. Many
were former LGAT fodder. Others had been volunteers for LGATs.

What was fascinating was that after the discussion struck root, quite
a few pro-LGAT types showed up to disrupt the thread.

We took this as a clue to keep digging.

Doesnt matter how smart, how well educated someone is.

They will be knocked off balance if unaware of the set up.

At least at a casino, one knows one is up against the house odds.

But when you are in an LGAT, you think its a fair game with a clean
deck of cards when in reality, the cards are marked.

You both were very fortunate.

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Re: This stuff can throw anyone off balance-U are lucky
Posted by: dirtbikes1 ()
Date: August 29, 2014 10:24PM

Thanks corboy,

They actually sent an email before hand telling my wife to wear layers as there would be temperature changes.

I would like to present more info about the "Graduation" and what happened after, as I attended this with my daughter and I have a first hand account.

First off, I was a little worried because the little info my wife would tell me was that they shared a lot of personal stuff. I had to pry this out of her when I noticed the blood shot eyes on day 3. They pretty much swore her to secrecy and made her sign agreements. My wife had excuses like they can't show their program or somebody would rip them off. (Later lol at that)

So the night of the graduation I am about to meet people that I do not know who have heard personal information about me. A little unethical if you ask me. I am already skeptical because of this.

We showed up at the hotel early and there was only one person in the lobby, (later realizing that they and just about everyone else there was a plant). So we waited.

Soon about a dozen people came in at once. I told my daughter that must be us, so lets follow. Everyone seemed happy and some had flowers. We all piled into an elevator and went down to the conference room. Once there my wife was standing outside and was surprised to see me there so early. She had been crying I could tell and I started to get a weird feeling. We didn't have time to talk when someone led us down a hallway towards the conference room. Then all of a sudden, this lady barks that only graduates can enter and that the rest of us need to wait down the hallway. (Later realizing she is already trying to control me).

So there we are with all these people making small talk. It seemed staged. Nobody talked to us at all. Then all of a sudden we hear clapping coming from the room. That's odd I thought, you would think at a graduation friends and family would be doing the clapping. Next my daughter asks me "What is going on Daddy?" I answer "I don't know honey". Even my daughter knew something was up.

So then they lead us into this dark room (different door than the first) with weird music playing. The "graduates" are standing around with candles lit and their eyes closed. I really had no idea what to do. I see my wife finally and walk towards her. This lady is saying something on this crappy pa system but I am not really paying attention. I look around to see what other people are doing and they are standing in front of the "graduates" So I stand in front of my wife. (Group mind control) My wife opens her eyes and once again I notice the bloodshot eyes, but this time it looks so weird. The best thing I can describe it is that it was like looking at my wife with no soul. Then it hits me. She is hypnotized. I start to kinda freak out and ask her why her eyes are crossed and why are all these people staring at us? Well, normally she would get pissed at this, but some lady gives her a thumbs up and she just shrugs it off. The whole time this lady is saying stuff in the PA and honestly I was so worried about my wife I only heard bits and pieces. Something about a new way of talking and our spouses would be a different person and we should be happy.

We try to mingle and I shake a few hands but my wife can tell I am about to explode. We leave and in the elevator she says something like "Back to reality". My wife takes the kid and we part ways. I am fuming. My wife goes to a friends (luckily not the friend in the group) and I go home.

I get home and do some SERIOUS research on this company and what I just witnessed. Luckily I found this website. Later my wife came home and she would not talk about it. She was like June Cleaver. Do you want a beer honey? I finally get her to fight with me and she finally starts yelling and I say "I am glad you are BACK!"

It took several days to convince my wife the whole truth. At first, every time I mentioned the word "cult" she would get physically violent. She would defend these people and even say things like "So what if it is a cult, I was Happy!" Just "wow" was all I could think. My wife is a strong intelligent woman who doesn't let anybody control her. Even me.

We went to therapy (a REAL psychiatrist with a degree hanging on the wall) and my wife confessed that later that night (of graduation) she came out of something and it was like a wave washed over her eyes and everything was clear again. She also made the analogy of the Jack Black movie Shallow Hal. (The guy was hypnotized to see women as skinny). I am convinced she was hypnotized.

My wife was depressed for several days, but is better now.

We had to block several people on Facebook and send them letters to get them to stop bugging us. I talked to one guy who kept saying things like "You have a fear of the unknown." and "You can only "Get it" if you take the course." and "Anyone can see from our website that 97% of graduates are highly satisfied." He actually offered me a free level I course. Uh, no thanks. He ended up threatening me with lawyers. So I did the same and requested our money back as per their guarantee. We shall see if that happens.

Eventually my wife would admit to doing almost all of the same exact things in the first part of this discussion. At first she didn't want to talk about it. I had to quiz her and ask "did you do this part?". I finally got her to read this forum with me and talk about it. She finally realized what these people are really doing.

I think she just wants this to go away, and so do I, but I feel like a victim at this point. I think she is embarrassed.

My dilemma now is that we have 2 friends wrapped up in this stuff and I don't know what or if I can do anything to help them. They think this stuff is the greatest thing since sliced bread and it has transformed their lives. They even send their kids to these people! I did notice they don't hang around the old crowd much anymore, just their new best friends from the group. I don't want to lose them as friends but it seems inevitable.

Anyway, once again, I hope this helps somebody out there like this website helped me. If you or anybody you know is in an LGAT, get yourself or them the F out!

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 30, 2014 03:30AM

This stuff sounds scary.

Can tell you that years ago, someone who was once a heavy duty drug addict
told us how she felt the first time she did a "speed ball" -- a combo of
speed plus heroin, injected by syringe.

She told us the stuff made her feel so blissful, she broke down crying, knelt down and begged God to let her feel that way, always.

That was her beginning into addiction.

This is just my personal opinion, but I think this LGAT stuff can do things
to people that is just about as powerful as the happy powders sold by dope dealers.

The dope dealers, if caught, go to jail.

But our society has not yet clued in that the social engineering methods that produce these trance-highs are are possibly as potent and addictive as the stuff sold by the dealers.

Here is some food for thought.

There are some kinds of experiments deemed risky enough that the American Psychological Association (APA) ethics guideline would forbid them.

But the LGATs operate outside of academia and outside of the medical establishment.

These entities have been experimenting on subjects for decades -- and have decades worth of experience processing subjects.

No individual can stand up to this, especially when not told what is going to be done to them.

Best thing is stay out of the chamber.

If they ever tell you "its best you dont know in advance" -- run.

If you are required to sign a form waiving your citizen/resident alien right to sue or mediate for damages in event you incur injury -- that is a red flag

Finally, anything powerful enough to be transformative or healing has potential for side effects. An ordinary package of aspirin lists side effects and how to tell whether to stop using it.

Any package of RX medication includes a slip of paper listing side effects.

So -- why the hell should these LGATs be exempt from listing potential side effects, eh?

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: jill w ()
Date: December 06, 2014 09:37PM

This is exactly what is going on with ACCD. Breakthrough sessions are dangerous. These groups all use the same methods and they have proven to be dangerous for some.

Why is there so much secrecy?

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: Sis ()
Date: April 26, 2016 01:14AM

I'm late to the party, but I wanted to share my experience with Phoenix Arises seminars in St. Louis.

I had been in a terrible on-again/off-again relationship. We're talking emotional abuse. A friend actually got me to sign up for Basic, using a "scholarship" she had for $100 off. I signed up; after all, it said "100% money-back guarantee".

About a month before the course was to start, I decided I didn't want to go after all, so I tried to cancel and ask for a refund. The second-in-command lady called me and said that the only way to get your money back was to actually attend the course and then if you didn't like it, they'd give you your money back. (I learned much later that they NEVER gave money back.)

I was desperate to break the obsession I had with this guy I was dating, so I thought "what the hell, I’ll go.” The key word was “obsession.” I had been obsessed with this guy for so long, I had no friends, no hobbies, no life. I was ripe for the picking. My new obsession was Phoenix.

In retrospect it is frightening how easily I bought in to the mind games they played, including shame, humiliation, hypnotism, etc. The leader, Jaimes, was scary. I remember one lady was late to a session because she had a car accident. He made her stand up in front of everyone while he screamed at her that it was all her fault. She was in tears. He called one other gal the “c” word. He told me that I was jealous of my mother and really wanted my father for myself. It went on and on and on. He had us running scared. We were often given a 30 minute break in which we had to eat, visit the bathroom, run out for props for whatever exercise was coming up. I remember vividly RUNNING through Target in a cold sweat, I was so afraid I’d be late getting back.

The real outrage was when we played the “Money Game.” In this game, we were given an assignment late one night to raise $1,000 cash by the next morning, something like eight hours later. The purpose was for us to realize how valuable we were and how meaningless money was. We were not allowed to tell anyone what we were doing, we were just supposed to cold-call our friends and family and offer to do things for them, like clean their garages, sit for their kids, etc. We also were not allowed to put forth our own money. I ended up putting in $400 of my own money because I was scared not to. I arrived the next day and was instructed to put all of the money in a huge pile. We were then instructed to roll in it while Pink Floyd’s “Money” played at top volume. It was a lot of fun, until I realized that they gathered up all the money and we never saw it again. Instead, we were given $100 scholarships to hand out to our friends and family (which had to be used within two months—they wouldn’t even give one day grace period.)

In another exercise, we had to strip down to our underwear and stand in front of people while they laughed and pointed at us. This was to teach us to handle our poor self-image.

After I finished all three courses, I actually came back and volunteered to be on “team” for a Basic. That’s when my eyes were opened wide. We were treated very poorly. We got no breaks, we had to fetch food and drinks for Jaimes. He was nasty and ill-tempered; he actually made fun of the participants when they weren’t around. For all the talk of confidentiality, there was very free talk among the staff about how weird the people were and how stupid their little problems were. I was five minutes late for one session (two hours before the seminar started) and I was lectured that I had broken my agreement. That was when the true picture emerged for me and I quit.

I will say that the obsession with Phoenix broke me of ALL obsessions. And I met several wonderful participants that are still friends to this day. We were like hostages banding together. Jaimes was a jerk; Jo is actually a very nice person who was fully under his spell. I was sorry that she bought the business from him and is continuing the sham.

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Re: LGATS - one person's experience of Lifespring
Posted by: righttofight ()
Date: April 26, 2016 01:31AM

wow. That experience was really really sick. Thanks for sharing that. I was hit by one of these douchebag LGATs in L.A. called MITT. Run by a Dutch hairdresser named Margo.

It's a disgusting outfit of pigs. Fact. Pigs are more honorable than these insects who run LGATS. Class action law suits. Legislation. Anything legal to extinguish these scumbags I'm for.

They use mind bending techniques that are targeted towards people who have low self esteem, poor boundaries, obsessive compulsive disorders.

Essentially they are the Hitlers in today's America. Cold blooded sociopaths who run these LGATs. And they have a bunch of different names. But the technique is always the same. Good for you for getting out and thanks for sharing.

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