What is an Abusive Group?
Any person, organization, religion, or government who does not welcome questioning of ideas or behavior, who will not answer questions, who manipulates to have you believe only in their way, who does not assist your quest for understanding or evades truth and accountability, is abusive and does or will use thought control to maintain their position. The Lessons in Awareness site began a few years ago with an examination of mind control within a particular organization, yet will apply to all levels of society as well. The title "Lessons in Awareness" refers to lessons learned from experience about perceived experts and authority figures, and I'm sure you will have your own feelings as to where to apply this information to people or organizations you know or have known in your own life.
"If anyone can show me, and prove to me, that I am wrong in thought or deed, I will gladly change. I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." -- Marcus Aurelius
Our wonderful tendency to have faith and believe in Good can be used to our detriment by those with either conscious or unconscious design. Some beliefs and thoughts we consider our own actually come from various forms of thought control, and well intentioned or not, it is woven into our families, into politics, media, government, religion, medicine and self-help groups. Unexamined beliefs can cause us grief, separate us from those we love, divide and drain our energy, and generally are the root of all our suffering.
No matter how or where we took on certain beliefs, we can never know who we really are until we acknowledge this phenomenon and begin to choose our thoughts with conscious awareness. This is a road less traveled, yet critically urgent in our current world environment. Offered herein is food for thought to examine how beliefs are promoted, examine your own beliefs and where they came from, evaluate the people and world around you, and find health and healing through awareness.
"Neither mysterious methods nor arcane new techniques were involved; the effectiveness of thought reform programs did not depend on prison settings, physical abuse, or death threats. Programs used the application of guilt/shame/anxiety manipulation, combined with the production of strong emotional arousal in certain settings. The pressures could be reduced only by participants' accepting the belief system or adopting behaviors promulgated by the purveyors of the material.“
On the self-help path we may seek an authority, a teacher or a group to learn, heal or advance our awareness. It's important to value and pursue all areas of health and especially to recognize the role mental health plays in the cycle of abuse of both children and adults. This pursuit can be healing. It's also important to be aware that vulnerable, innocent, intelligent people can be fooled by the expert emotional manipulation of a teacher, counselor or loved one who claims to know the only truth. Training in Power is a feel good experience; its grand and uplifting promises capture a natural hope and longing in students, while its classic thought control techniques slowly train each mind into the founder's particular and exacting story of truth. Emotional manipulation to embed this complex system in someone's mind is thought control. Emotional punishment for resisting thought control is abuse. When it is embedded to extreme in a group, it is classical cult abuse.
Thought control is ultimately spiritual abuse. Our spirit, or our aliveness loses its spunk, joy, energy and freedom when we are drawn in to follow someone else's beliefs rather than develop our own. Hopefully the information on this site will help evaluate aspects of teachers, groups, and thought control.
"What is a Cult" from Tory, an ex Scientology member!
January 2011 Update
I'd like to thank all those who have contributed letters and comments to the Lessons website over the years. I want you to know that your contributions have helped many, to this day, sort through their conflicted feelings as they free themselves from thought control influences.
"And So It Ends....."
"Thank you for the information. I had already decided to stop my TIP practice, but your site and links have served as a good confirmation of my feelings."
“I've been trying to figure out how to climb away from TIP for a while now... Their power is strong... having found this link online has helped considerably. And from what I can imagine, has saved me from serious damage. Thank you.”
"I appreciate your thoughts and your concern. I have plenty on my own. You're correct that I have enough other things going on in my life that Training has not become center stage (nor do I wish it to). I understand many of the issues you raise - they are not new to me. I went through level 6 last year, and don't really plan to involve myself much more as far as teaching or taking more levels..."
"Thank you so very much for your sincere, wise and inspired words. I am very grateful for your advice and agree on all accounts. I am only interested in energy work as another pathway and area of growth and healing. I, too, believe that life itself is the best teacher, but it sure is nice to hear it from someone as experienced as yourself. Thanks again. I'm glad we connected and hope that our paths will cross again. Be well.. “
"Thank you so much for putting your e-mail (online) ....I want to leave TIP and am not sure where to turn. I would like to join the Yahoo support group. Thank you for sharing your info on the Rick Ross' website. I do not want to leave my name at this time until I know its safe."
“THANK YOU for your courageous soul; for constructing and providing such an awesome site with a wealth of information and TRUTH! It's an invaluable support/reference system for those that are ready to see the truth of TIP, know within themselves that things just 'aren't right', but have nowhere to turn or look for substantiated truth. I know for me personally it has been a God send and has assisted in getting myself back! Thanks bunches and love/strength to you all as you take your true power/self back and become whole again!”
“I am so grateful for all the information that you have on this site, it is a relief to know that I was correct in my assessment and that I am not alone in the journey to walk away…. thank you for your willingness to share with the world the truth.”
"When I read your reply I felt so moved. Thank you…. I feel so relieved as though I am trying to come out of a nightmare...."
"Thank you Diane!!!!! This gives us such a powerful tool to evaluate information, especially in the realm of power and Power".
Fear of Retribution
"Some cults inculcate their followers with notions that they will get sick, fall from grace, lose energy or somehow suffer if they leave. Former members may worry indefinitely about their cult leader's dire predictions of the horrible events that will befall them and their families. Because they have been so well trained, former cult members may continue to see this possible fate as something they may bring on themselves by having left the group, given up on their faith, and betrayed the cause."
"Recovering the Soul" by Larry Dossey
(Many ex-members of the training contributed to this site; note that for security reasons some have requested their letters and submissions remain anonymous) n