Cult

How Understanding Mind Control Can Prevent Future Terrorist Attacks

2018-12-13T20:48:13-04:00September 9th, 2016|Blog, Current Events|

This coming Sunday marks fifteen years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. On the morning of September 11, 2001 our nation was changed forever. Many lives were lost, and many of us were left in shock and disbelief as we helplessly watched the scenes of horror on our TV screens. We spent the next few days learning that these attacks were committed by a group called Al-Qaeda, led by Osama Bin Laden. This led to invading Afghanistan and the mistake of Bush’s insistence to invade Iraq- which destabilized the region and led to the formation of ISIS. As soon as I [...]

New Book on Patty Hearst Falls Short of Understanding Undue Influence

2018-12-16T20:07:36-04:00August 12th, 2016|Blog, Media Reviews|

I recently read a NY Times book review of AMERICAN HEIRESS: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst by Jeffrey Toobin and listened to an interview done with the author on NPR. Honestly, I was horrified at his lack of knowledge and understanding about undue influence and disagreed 100% with his conclusions. I felt like I was listening to a “cult apologist”- someone hired by cult groups to defend the group and say they are “fine”- for example, G. Gordon Melton flying to Japan after the sarin gas attacks to defend the Aum Shinrikyo [...]

Use of Words, Loaded Language, and “Thought Control” of Believers

2018-12-16T21:05:22-04:00July 29th, 2016|Blog, Resources and Support|

I recently read former Scientologist official Mike Rinder’s blog piece on “Word Clearing.” I suspect that most people who read his blog are ex-Scientologists, but I think it might be interesting for former members of other destructive groups to give it a read. I thought it could be a useful introduction to a blog I have been wanting to write for a few weeks on “Loaded Language. When it comes to freeing one's mind from cult influence, one of the hardest things for many to overcome is the involuntary use of “loaded language.” Loaded language is something I first [...]

Donald Trump Is Not Fit to Be President of the U.S.

2018-12-16T19:05:33-04:00July 22nd, 2016|Blog, Current Events|

Donald Trump is now the official Republican nominee for President of the United States. A year ago, his run for office seemed like a practical joke. However, now it is clear beyond all rationality, that there are powerful, wealthy, influential people backing him. I am worried. As an expert on cults and other high-control groups, I have been asked by a number of people about my opinion on Trump and his legions of followers. I first wrote a Huffington Post blog last December when Trump talked about banning Muslims from entering the U.S. and shutting down the Internet. Last month, [...]

An Introduction to Steve Guziec

2018-12-16T20:42:20-04:00July 8th, 2016|Blog, Guest Blogs, News and Updates|

Guest Blog by Steve Guziec Update: As of January 2018, Steve Guziec is no longer working with Freedom of Mind Resource Center. He wished to take his life in a new direction and we wish him the very best in his academic and life pursuits. I'm so excited to be working with Steven Hassan and the Freedom of Mind team. It's a wonderful cause and a truly worthwhile line of work. As someone who understands just what it's like to be involved in a cult, I am often asked to share my story. So, here it is. I was [...]

How to Proceed After the Worst Mass Shooting in US History

2018-12-16T19:29:10-04:00June 14th, 2016|Blog, Current Events|

This past weekend, forty-nine innocent people were killed in an Orlando gay night club and more were injured. The attack, committed by a lone gunman who called 911 and pledged allegiance to ISIS, is the deadliest mass shooting in the history of the United States. Much like the rest of the nation, my thoughts have been with those who were lost and who lost loved ones during this attack. As a human rights activist, I am frequently public in my support for people to be themselves, and respected for their right to be gay. As more information comes out, I [...]

Important New Model Offers Legal Guidelines for Cases Involving Undue Influence

2018-12-16T00:18:52-04:00June 3rd, 2016|Blog, Media Reviews|

Forty years ago, I was deprogrammed from the Moonies and months later I agreed to do involuntary deprogrammings with fellow cult members. During that time, parents had the legal recourse to help their adult children involved with cults. Families could go before a judge, and petition the court for a one week ex-parte "conservatorship" giving them custody of their loved one. The family argued that their loved one had lacked informed consent and was the victim of "artful and designing people" who used undue influence to recruit them into a totalitarian cult that robbed them of their free will. [...]

Cult Survivors Need Compassion and Help to Recover

2018-12-16T19:42:22-04:00May 20th, 2016|Blog, Current Events, Resources and Support|

On Thursday, news broke that another of the missing Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped by the Islamist extremist cult Boko Haram two years ago has been found. The second in just as many days, she is being hailed officially by the authorities of Nigeria as a success story and paraded in front of the media as proof the new government’s ability to defeat the cult. However, there have also been reports circulating that paint a much less celebratory picture. It seems that some of the locals in the villages are afraid of accepting anyone who has been involved with Boko Haram. [...]

My Waking Up Day- 40 Years Later- I am Filled with Gratitude!

2018-12-16T21:01:22-04:00May 11th, 2016|Blog, News and Updates|

A recent photo of Gladys Gonzalez, myself, and Nestor Garcia M.D. May 11th 1976 was the day. After five days of deprogramming, I “woke up” and emerged from being a “model Moonie” and leader to a very upset, confused, angry, ashamed self. A team of four people hired by my parents: Nestor Garcia, Michael Strom, Gladys Gonzalez, and Gary Rosenberg* worked together until I “snapped” from my fanatical involvement in the Moon cult and allowed a doubt to surface. The rest is history. Nestor, Michael, and Gladys were all former Moonies themselves. Gary was not but played [...]

Let’s End Scientology’s Tax Exemption Now!

2018-12-16T21:11:49-04:00May 6th, 2016|Blog, Current Events|

In 2010, I wrote a Huffington Post blog about the need for Scientology’s U.S. tax exempt status to be removed. With no change six years later, it is time to really make an effort to get the IRS to act. Word on the dangers of this group is getting out. The past few years have seen the release of important books like Ron Miscavige’s Ruthless, Leah Remini’s Troublemaker and Jon Atack’s classic A Piece of Blue Sky. The group has lost a few high profile members (Lisa Marie Presley, Katie Holmes) who have spoken out against the organization. In addition, [...]