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(no subject) [Sep. 2nd, 2007|11:44 pm]
Cult Survivors

thingie
An interesting article in the most recent issue of Mother Jones.

The Cult that Spawned the Tough Love Teen Industry.

Some of these places you may have heard about.

Also interesting to note that Narcotics Anonymous was started by ex-synanon members as well, although they follow the twelve step template, and not synanon's.

Anyway, Maia is awesome. She's one of the few "outsiders" who consistently, and with true journalistic integrity, seeks to expose the rampant abuse which happens in these Synanon-inspired facilities. Nobody has done a lineage tree like this before, (at the bottom of the article) and it blew me away when I saw it for the first time.

I daresay that this is not isolated. Cults of all colors work their way into mainstream culture in some form or another. Ex-members, who still believe the gospel, form their own ministries, or obtain a position of influence. For example, the new governor of Florida was a Seedling. (i.e. member of the Seed, when it was around.)
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testify [Aug. 23rd, 2007|01:08 am]
Cult Survivors

thingie
Hi survivors.

Well, this community is pretty much dead, so I wanted to start a discussion here, if possible.
Read more...Collapse )
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Intro [Jun. 6th, 2007|10:52 pm]
Cult Survivors

kumquatwriter
[mood |uncomfortableuncomfortable]

Well, here's my intro.  I'm 30 and just got out of a relationship that both my therapist and I consider a cult.  Are there any survivors of very small cults here?  The group started out as four people, but wound up just me and the leader.  I was in for five years. 

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(no subject) [Jun. 6th, 2007|01:17 pm]
Cult Survivors

kumquatwriter
[mood |nervousnervous]
[music |John Williams - Star Wars End Theme]

Does anyone still post to this group?  I'm new.
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(no subject) [Feb. 18th, 2007|07:34 am]
Cult Survivors

thingie
I don't know why I forgot to put this up earlier.

How to start your own cult.

It's pretty dead on.
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(no subject) [Feb. 16th, 2007|06:11 pm]
Cult Survivors

thingie
Here's something scary:

Anyone been to George Farnsworth's site?

This is what is says on the front page:

"NOTE: Synanon is no longer in operation. If you need help -- try these links: Narcotics Anonymous, Delancey Street, Walden House, Samaritan Village in Brooklyn, Amity Foundation or Phoenix House all staffed or run by former Synanon residents.

I already know that Phoenix House is a huge sketch fest, so that is no surprise.

My ex used to work at Walden House. I asked him about this and this is what he said:

"Synanon was constantly mentioned. I believe Walden House was founded by people who had gone through Synanon. Funny you should mention Phoenix House. I applied there, but they didn't hire me. Sounds like it was possibly a good thing."

A survivor of Straight, Inc. who I know online had this to say:

"It has always been thus. So much of drug rehab lingo goes right back to Synanon it's silly. The word "empathetic" has actually made it into the dictionary by that course. I know a dude who's about my age and spent 17 years in a PA prison. They made him take rehab because he confessed to having smoked pot. WTH, gets ya outa the day room for a few hours, right? He and I can carry on a whole conversation w/ program hooks and buzz terms and completely lose everyone else in the room.

Yeah, it's rampant! In 69 or 70, Bobby DuPont as head of NIDA was tasked with finding "The Remedy" for the expected wave of heroin addicted Vietnam vets. He toured Synanon and came back with the formal recommendation to replicate it across the at Federal, state, local and private expense. The Seed got over a million a year of that, and I only know that because it's spawn, Straight, fucked w/ a man who's right adept at that kind of research and he snapped out of it and started doing that research! "

So, yeah. it's not just the Therapeutic Boarding School industry. Rehabs are drinking the Kool Aid, too. And it's much more sinister than simply 12 step. It's Synanon.
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(no subject) [Jan. 22nd, 2007|03:39 am]
Cult Survivors

thingie
hmm. Interesting. Didn't think I'd find something like this on LJ. I see it's rather dead, with few members, but thought I'd join anyway.

I was at CEDU. It was a Synanon offshoot. Started by a guy who used to work there. Was interred for two and a half years. Billed itself as an "emotional growth school" in the same way that Synanon billed itself a "rehab".

Sucked. Brainwashed the hell out of me. Thought I was over it, since it's been almost twenty years. But stuff's recently come back up. That's the way it goes.
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Holidays [Nov. 12th, 2006|02:40 am]
Cult Survivors

noveldevice
[mood |weirdweird]

This is a weird time of year for me, chock full of holidays I used to celebrate and now don't, and holidays I didn't celebrate and now do, and holidays I have never celebrated.

The former, of course, would be the Day of Atonement, Night To Be Much Remembered/Observed and Feast of Tabernacles/Last Great Day. Samhain is pretty much the only one in the middle category, and of course, I have never celebrated Christmas, Hannukah, or Purim, which I think is this time of year-ish, although it might be in the spring. We never did any of the fun Jewish holidays, just the dull and onerous ones.

Stores and radio stations are starting to play Christmas music, which inspires a weird one-two punch of dislike for me. First, of course, my knee-jerk reaction is disgust, because I was raised to believe that Christmas was for heathen fake Christians, and then my more considered reaction is also disgust, because it's not my holiday and I resent having spent my entire life being subjected to it for at least a month (and now two months) every year. Bleah.

No real insights, just the observation that this is an uncomfortable season for me. Only Thanksgiving remains the same. Just with fewer idiots I'm related to by blood.

How about you guys?
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The Advanced Bonewits' Cult Danger Evaluation Frame [Oct. 27th, 2006|12:35 pm]
Cult Survivors

nimawae

This page is on Isaac Bonewits' website. It's extremely interesting. For me, the most disturbing part is how much my family really shows up as a self-contained cult on this chart. Obviously there are certain elements that don't fit for the simple reason that it's a family that had no interest in integrating anyone new into their "group." Elements such as leader infallibility, isolation, and dogma were particularly strong when I was growing up, although isolation was my father's most effective tool. I had never thought of my family as cult-like really until my therapist brought it up as being very much like one. And the more I think about it the more it disturbs me, especially since my siblings are still stuck there with no refuge even in the form of going to school. I'm still having messed up dreams because of them...All of my nightmares at this point have something to do with me being dragged back into that life. I never had those sort of dreams before. I'll have to detail some of them later. I'm just rambling now, so here's the link:

http://www.neopagan.net/ABCDEF.html

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(no subject) [Oct. 2nd, 2006|10:46 pm]
Cult Survivors

noveldevice
[mood |hopefulhopeful]

Just to get things warmed up...welcome!

I hope that this will be a place where we can talk about our experiences being in and leaving a cult with people who have also been there and can relate, support, advise. I have found that a lot of people who don't have that experience quite simply don't understand, and it's sometimes, I think, even harder for those of us who were raised in cults to answer the questions the general public has, like "Why were you in it? Why didn't you just leave? What took you so long?" when we weren't the ones who chose that life. It was particularly painful for me as a child and teenager to feel as though I had to defend my parents' cult and its practices when I myself thought that they were stupid and harmful.

Growing up in the cult did a lot of bad things to me. Talking about it is necessary, but it is also sometimes awkward, and I have found that often people that I thought would understand, or be sympathetic, in the event did neither. I hope that this group will be a place where we can talk about it with as little awkwardness as possible.
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