All posts tagged: healing and recovery

Effective Healing Takes Hard Work

I’ve written before about why ex-members need to heal themselves before helping others. Even if they’re not interested in becoming a vocal activist against destructive cults, there are plenty of good reasons to learn about undue influence and work on personal recovery. It still amazes me to encounter incredible ex-member activists who have not done

Freedom of Mind for LGBTQ Youth

Freedom of Mind, as an organization and as a meme is grounded in a commitment to basic human rights as expressed by the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Please take a moment to look at these profound statements. It’s not surprising that many cults hold doctrines and practices which are intolerant and even violent

A Call to Activism

From Combating Cult Mind Control (2015) I am still recovering from shock and dismay over the results of the 2016 American presidential election. I still stand by my appraisal of Donald Trump as a person who holds the stereotypical characteristics of a cult leader. Now that he is America’s President-elect, we have an even greater

Belief vs. Fact

Mark Twain once said, “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.” I was listening to this podcast, and it got me thinking about the reality that so many people are walking around with beliefs which they consider “Truth” with a capital “T.” Sometimes even intelligent, educated people seem

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

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

Reaching Out: Communicating After Cult Exit

I am often approached by concerned family members of adult cult members who need help. I work with the family by coaching them to use my Strategic Interactive Approach. This involves teaching them how to employ an ethical influence campaign based on compassion, and designed to help the cult member question the group’s leader, doctrine,

Vulnerable Times: We All Need to Protect Ourselves and Each Other!

This morning’s Boston Globe reads, “An avalanche of worry” and I can’t help but think that there are countless numbers of people whose lives will be negatively and psychologically impacted by these grim economic developments. First of all, former members of totalistic religious groups (who have indoctrinated their members into a fear of Armageddon; Apocalypse;

Heal Yourself First, Then Help Others

May 11, 2016 marks the 40th anniversary of my waking up from cult mind control: day five of a deprogramming initiated by my family after I nearly died in van crash. You see, at age 19, I was deceptively recruited into a front group of the Moon cult. I was transformed into a different person

Freedom of Mind is the True Basis of Religious Freedom

Freedom of mind is the true basis of religious freedom. The death of Sun Myung Moon (2012) presented a rare—and largely missed—opportunity to open a real public conversation about the way that high-demand groups, such as cults, exert their influence over people’s minds and behaviors. Moon was the epitome of a cult leader during the