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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: ex-krishna ()
Date: January 24, 2004 06:59AM

Has anyone else who's been in a cult felt a need to tell people that you were in a cult?
When I first left the Krishnas, I told everyone I'd been in it. I was still using my Krishna name even for I guess about a year or so after I left.
But that was years ago now and I hardly tell anyone anymore except for those really close to me.
I've been studying philosophy at school and it lead to all sorts of questions which led me to reveal to my prof in an after-class discussion that I was interested in issues like fanaticism, false gurus etc. I didn't say I'd been in the Krishnas, but indirectly I did give a lot of hints that I'd been in a cult...
I'm not saying that's a bad thing for me to have done nor am I saying it was a good thing, just that I did it and I find that interesting in itself as a point of discussion.
Anyone else?

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: PennyBright ()
Date: January 24, 2004 09:02AM

While my background is with a destructive religion, and not a cult per se, I quite relate to what you are saying.

For me it's a little different -- very often I run up against some fairly normal situation that involves medicine or medical science in some way, and have to explain my total ignorance of it. I also often have to talk about my background with medical care providers, because of some of the education and anxiety issues that are due to my background.

So, for the most part, I'm fairly open about having been raised in the Christian Science church. Admittedly, it doesn't have the same kind of stigma attached to it that having been involved with a more fringe group might, which probably makes it easier for me.

Days do come when I have an intense need to talk about my experience in CS -- usually I write or journal about it, or talk with friends and family who are familiar with the situation. On rare occasions, I've worked with a psychologist.

Never taken a philosophy course -- probably never will. I have an irrational prejudice against the subject *lol*.


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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: Cosmophilospher ()
Date: January 24, 2004 02:04PM

REAL philosophy, is an absolutely wonderful thing. Its a disciplined way to THINK about Reality and our place in it. It involves Epistemology, Mind, Ethics, Logic, Metaphysics, Aesthetics, Eudaimonia, Critical Thinking, etc.
Real Philosophy is not about dogmatism, but about inquiry and exploration. Its wonderful, because if you get serious about Philosophy, seeing the lies and errors of the cultists are childs play.

Even something like Christian "Science" can be analyzed using the methods of philosophy. That's where the grotesque errors of Christian Antiscience are exposed. (I know quit a bit about CS). Consider calling it Christian Antiscience, as there is NOTHING scientific about Mary Baker Eddy. If you relabel it Christian Antiscience, then everytime you THINK about it, your brain will be reminded that it is a pile of errors and lies.

As far as talking about it, i must admit my main talking about my errors has been on the internet. I personally feel a bit ashamed about admitting i was duped and tricked. Its a bit of a dirty secret for me. My friends know little about it.
But i have no problem admitting this anonymously.
Actually, talking about it on the internet, helps the person who is doing the talking! It is reordering those experiences in your brain.
Talking and writing about your experiences are very helpful, whether to a close friend, or a good trained therapist. But internet journaling i find very helpful. You get to journal, and then have others respond. Even when the wacko cultists respond, its very valuable info.
I basically deprogrammed myself on the Anthony Robbins website, while making over 1000 posts, detailing all of Robbins techniques on his own website, using Robbins own techniques of manipulation! (Because of me, and a few others, they moved to a totally censored webboard, where now all customer complaints, and criticisms are disallowed.)
And i was attacked constantly by almost everyone there (the Tonyite Morons), but it really did create a great healing inside my brain. I listened to a "free" Tony Robbins New Year speech last week, and i could see right through all of his bullshit, and manipulation, and i didn't react that much. I was so bored listening to him, i had to force myself to listen to the entire speech. When your guru BORES you silly, then healing has occurred. This means the anger and pain are healing.

So writing and talking about it, exploring it, wrestling with it, are the path to healing, in my view.



Never taken a philosophy course -- probably never will. I have an irrational prejudice against the subject *lol*.

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: ex-krishna ()
Date: January 26, 2004 01:30AM

coz you are right on the money!!! critical thinking rocks.
There's an American singer named Susan Werner (her website) who has a song named "Sorry about Jesus" -- the lyrics aren't on her site and I don't have the right to type them all in so I'll just give a couple quotes from it out of memory ("for review purposes" that's legal :)).
It's set as a conversation between old friends from high school who've met up again years later:
"Hello Amy Miles,
I'm surprised to see you, do you live here now
Are you married, do you have some kids
Are you still painting?
Oh that's good, that's good,
You really were good at it...."

"And by the way,
I'm sure that you remember I was wierd in school
I'm sorry about Jesus and all that you know
When I memorized the Bible I went overboard
And I prayed for your soul
and you were saved you said
and I was glad to tears you wouldn't go to hell
with everybody else
oh I was weird in school
I'm sorry about Jesus and all that you know
I try to just forget about it all"

The last bit is said with a bit of an embarrassed laugh and then her voice fills with another kind of emotion: a very serious one. It's a delicate balance between deep regret and embarrassment and being able to laugh about it and relief that she's past it.

I highly highly recommend the album -- especially for that song but not only for it.

Hearing that song was the first time I'd heard my emotions on the subject put into words. It was an incredibly powerful moment for me. Very healing. Lots of tears -- a hugh release / relief to hear my very mixed and personal feelings shared by another person. Especially a great artist like Susan Werner (not that I assume it's biographical in her case: that's the beauty of the empathy and imagination of the artist).

I will email her a link to this thread so she knows I've quoted her in this context.

Moderator: if she expresses any disapproval I'll let you know but I can't see that I've violated any copywriting by quoting for review like this.

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: weesue ()
Date: February 02, 2004 08:05AM

Hello Guys
I have just come accross this forum, and I hope you don't mind that I have joined. I have read some of the posts and can relate to them, although from a different religion with no church building just a very mind controlling sect, cult whatever you want to call it! I have been so isolated for years here in Scotland, because there are no support groups at all. So I decided to build my own website, and have had a great response and feedback, mostly from the USA. would love for you to view my story and get back to me. Could the regulars tell me if this forum would be good for me? I hope to hear from you guys soon. Sorry about being a bit vague, but my story is a longish one and on my front page of my website.
Take care

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: weesue ()
Date: February 02, 2004 08:12AM


Sorry forgot to leave link...Told you I was new to this!

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: Hope ()
Date: February 03, 2004 06:21AM

Hi weesue,

You certainly are welcome here and I think you also have a lot to offer. My family is fundamentalist Christian and after reading your website, see many similarities, tho they've loosened up a bit when life just didn't work out according to their expectations.

I think your post deserves to have its own thread, so if you cut and paste what you have written to a new thread, you'll get more responses.

Glad to have you aboard. I have to re-read your info and I'll reply later.


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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: weesue ()
Date: February 03, 2004 07:16AM

Hi There Hope!
Thank you for the welcome. That's very kind of you, I'm so glad I have told my story, after years of isolation and shame! Yes Shame! Because I have affected so many lives and have been so affected by "it" myself. People like you make me feel that it is so worthwhile, so thank you again, I have taken your advice and started a new thread. I am really in awe at the responses I've had already, I think because it is more of a problem or more recognised in the USA. I know Scotland is a very small country, and Britain as a whole too. But there must be so many people out there suffering what we've went thru'. And still no known help/support groups. I've got a lot to thank for all the available websites that have helped me, which are links on my website. I feel that I have just been let out of a dark cave that has imprisoned me for nearly 30 years. Thank you.
I will be in touch soon
Take care
Weesue:) :) :) :) :) :) :)

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: vinman ()
Date: May 03, 2004 07:02AM

its funny but the last thing the people in the cult want is for people to leave. i dont know what that is but. why would you want to attack and distroy a person that wants to leave your organazation. i have been feeling this latly. i dont know if its guilt or what. people come and go in centers or churches. why do the leaders think they can hold onto you forever? that single point of arogance makes me want to screem :eek: its not normal thinking. its patological [there nuts]. its normal for people to come and go in a persons life. its sick to grab onto a person and suck them dry forever. i got some feed back today that was a hint of the recovery prossess. fantastic. i would not have seen it. but it was an afirmation in taking the power out of the group leaders hands once you start to see the holes. for me i need to be very active in my own recovery. so why do they need to hold on? its patological. its narcisitic. the cult leaders personality is so twisted that they need to be considered an incarnation of god and to be completely adored by all the people around them all the time. can you imagen what hard work that must be.

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telling people about your cult days
Posted by: Leopardgirl ()
Date: May 03, 2004 10:32AM

I don't tell people for the most part, unless there is some really good reason. (I just posted the story here after lurking for a year on this board!) Some close freinds know what happened because I stayed with them for several nights following the big, traumatic event that led me to leaving the group. It's very hard for people to understand unless they have been through it. It's interesting though--almost everyone that I have opened up to about it seems to have a story of their own about some sort of "cultic" interaction--either with a controlling therapist, a group, an organization--something. I was very surprised at how common it really is. Most people who I have shared this with have been very compassionate and understanding--there really hasn't been the judgement I anticipated. But still, there is a certain amount of shame in this for me and I choose not to talk all that openly about it right now. I don't even like to discuss it much with my husband, even though it affected him a lot towards the end of my involvement, as the leader demanded that I divorce him....and I agreed to. (We're still together; the "divorce" lasted about two days.)

I'm really glad to be able to read the stories on this board and to be able to post anonyously and talk about it with people who have experienced it. It's coming up on the first anniversary of the trauma, and I am having many dreams about the group--about being trapped and not being able leave, etc. I'm glad for this support.

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