In the last year, we have seen a major change in how sexual and child abuse is viewed and handled by authorities. In the #MeToo and #ChurchToo era, more courageous survivors are safely telling their […]
Earlier this year, I had the privilege of interviewing sociologist, Dr. Stephen Kent. Dr. Kent holds degrees in both religious studies and sociology. He is an author, professor, and expert on cults and conspiracy theories. He received two Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grants to study sects, cults, and new religions in Canada and the United States. He is very qualified to speak about coercive influence and cults, having a vast educational background, as well as, the largest book collection in North America on alternative and sectarian religions. I have known Steve for decades now and respect his work very much. he has also testified as an expert regarding cult practices, including Scientology.
A few weeks ago, I spoke to a gathering of a group of parentally alienated mothers and fathers in Waltham, Massachusetts. Parental alienation is a phenomenon where children are turned against one of their parents
This week, my good friend and former member of Scientology Jon Atack joins me for an in-depth discussion. Jon is an undue influence expert, an author, researcher, and co-creator of the Open Minds Foundation. We discuss narcissistic traits we see between President Donald Trump and pulp science fiction writer and creator of Scientology, Ron Hubbard.
In June of 2018, I did an interview with psychologist and ex-Mormon John Dehlin for his Mormon Stories podcast. In preparation for the show, John read Combating Cult Mind Control and told me that the book was transformative. Then he did a wonderful analysis of the BITE model of the Mormon Church which we included in a blog. Afterward, we got the idea to do a similar analysis of the BITE model and the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Now, it is Scientology’s turn. I encourage people to use the BITE model to systematically evaluate the core beliefs and behaviors to determine if it is a destructive group which uses mind control techniques.
BITE Model Since my deprogramming from the Moon cult in 1976, I have come to learn of countless thousands of groups that I have never heard of before. Are they cults? Do they use mind
The Age of Influence I believe that we are no longer living merely in the “Age of Information” but the “Age of Influence.” Information has long been collected, legally and illegally about billions of people,
I previously wrote a blog about people who are still living inside high-control groups that no longer believe in the leader or group. They remain trapped inside due to a variety of reasons, but there are also
Last week, I blogged about some ways that children are harmed physically by destructive cults, including murder, suicide, medical neglect, trafficking, corporal punishment and sexual predation. Many children that are born or raised in a group are helpless and do not have the resources to protect themselves. And very often, children are harmed psychologically and face difficulties not just during their childhood but also after leaving the group. For example, in this week’s blog we list just a few things that can cause lifelong harm if not addressed with proper counseling and resources.
Last week, I blogged about adults in totalistic, destructive cults who are physically still in but psychologically out and sitting on the fence. This week I wanted to blog about children who are helpless and were born or raised in a group. They do not have the resources to protect themselves. In this blog (part one of a two-part series) I focus on the physical and medical harm to children. Next week, I will discuss psychological harm to children. Both weeks, I will include some resources for addressing these problems.
Download Influence Continuum June 28, 2018 This Influence Continuum graphic describes my model for evaluating influence–from the healthy to the unhealthy. My BITE model offers a list of concerning practices that represent unhealthy mind
Mental Health Awareness Month May is Mental Health Awareness Month! I wanted to write this blog on how some high control groups program their members away from mental health help. This is true, especially in