Deprogamming deprogramming

Discussion in 'News and Current Events' started by Anonymous, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. Anonymous Member

    How many ex-CoS have been ‘deprogrammed’?

    I ask this in the context of JR Lewis’ open letter:

    There are a couple of thoughts that spring to mind.

    Firstly, there is a spectrum of deprogramming in terms of members leaving. On one side of the scale you have no outside interference with the member leaving through disillusionment. Next comes the member getting booted out and/or declared. Then you have instances where that member comes across critical information that motivates them to leave. Next you have instances where critical information was given to that member by either friends or family. At the next level you have instances where much critical information (documentaries, books, victim testimony, etc.) is given to the member with friends and family strongly encouraging that member to view such (this instance would cover exit counselling). This scale continues until you reach the opposite end where forcible deprogramming takes place.

    Clearly the CoS uses the term in their materials in the sense of being closer to the forced end of the above spectrum. Lewis seems to use the term to cover family and friends getting involved, and everything beyond that. So there is an inconsistency in how the term ‘deprogrammed’ is being used. I suspect that very few ex-CoS would qualify as ‘deprogrammed’ in the sense espoused by the CoS. I further suspect that a majority of ex-CoS would actually fall under Lewis’ use of the term. It would be interesting if someone with more experience in this field could shed some insight on this.

    Secondly, I find it utterly bizarre to see the term ‘deprogrammed’ being used without acknowledging the occurrence of ‘programming’. Lewis’ fundamental hypothesis is that ‘deprogramming’ renders ex-members unreliable and not objective, and that it cultivates illegitimate feelings of hostility towards the CoS. Consider how the vast vast majority of current Scientologists are unreliable and not objective regarding psychiatry, and how those Scientologists have illegitimate feelings of hostility towards psychiatry.

    It seems bizarre to me for Lewis to attempt using the concept of ‘deprogrammed’ to discredit ex-members while he simultaneously ignores the readily observable phenomenon of ‘programming’ that CoS members undergo (with psychiatry being an illustrative example).

    The use of the concept ‘deprogammed’ seems very flaky and inconsistent with observation.
    • Like Like x 3
  2. OTBT Member

    Good to see I'm not the only person who noticed this Lewis BS about "deprogramming".

    People leaving a a cult are not "deprogrammed", they are are just leaving. Doesn't matter whether it is a voluntary exit due to disgust, or forced exit through disconnection.

    "Deprogramming" is a straw man distraction, purposely brought up by Lewis to distract from his earlier sucking up to the cult.

    Scientology is CULT.

    Scientology is not a "new religious movement".

    Leaving a cult has nothing to do with deprogramming, but probably lots to do with freedom of information about scientology on the internet.

    Maybe Lewis is finally starting to wake up and get "deprogrammed" from scientology's agenda.
  3. Anonymous Member

    Some empirical evidence:

    Does this really back the case for lots of ‘deprogramming’?

    There is something else that is interesting here. Consider that only people who participate in the ex-CoS community would have heard of, and thus participated, in this survey. This would imo bias the survey in its sampling towards the more hostile group of ex-CoS members. It does seem that ‘deprogramming’ cannot be used to even come close to explaining the ex-CoS sentiment away.
  4. Squirrel King Member

    In the 1970s, cult deprogrammers would actually kidnap and imprison the victims from groups like the Moonies. This is obviously illegal. Today, legal methods are used (including the Rapid City Encampment). The old deprogramming methods have not been used in 40 years. These are what Scientology likes to reference. Since denial of fact is a virtue in Scientology, they remain stuck in their counter methods, believing it is alright to re-"kidnap" blown Scientologists, even if they left on their own accord. Unlike Scientology, we have learned (re-discovered) a lot in 40-years about the steps of effective "deprogramming". But as the graph above reports, very little "deprogramming" actually occurs. You can thank the foot-bullets for that.
  5. Anonymous Member

    ur doing it wrong

    This is 'deprogramming'

  6. AnonLover Member

    just to be fair - if your gonna call the exit survey "empirical evidence", you should qualify a few factoids:

    its amateur scholarship in the form of a straw poll,and there is currently a margin of error for +/- 8 votes on any given question (due to 8 responses on the first question saying ex-CofS membership does not apply [none of the above] where peeps were just having a look at the survey for curiosity or tech support sake)

    a straw poll is only valuable for analysis when it includes diversity of demographics covered. the 2 major demographics is ex-scientologists and indie/FZ scientologists. We have a strong base in the former, but i'm still trying to garner more participation in the latter to balance out the FZ flatline on Question #17.

    That said - Lewis' use of the antiquated term "deprogramming" is hugely significant, it underscores his lack his lack of credibility in multiple ways, takes a shit over all his respectability, makes him into a total liar when he calls himself an academic, and puts huge emphasis on what a horses ass he is. however i'm at work right now and cant spew that diatribe until later... altho i suspect others will beat me too it by then ;)
    • Like Like x 3
  7. Anonymous Member

    Here is another interesting Lewisism. The following is taken from his paper “RECONSTRUCTING THE "CULT" EXPERIENCE: Post-Involvement Attitudes as a Function of Mode of Exit and Post-Involvement Socialization”.
    You keep telling yourself that Lewis.

    The bit that is of interest to us. His hypothesis concerning deprogramming consisted on surveying 154 people. The breakdown is as follows:
    Yep, that’s right. Lewis ideas concerning ex-CoS is based on a sampling of just two ex-Scientologists.
    This is where things get really interesting. Note that AnonLover’s survey was over double the sample size Lewis used. If Lewis’ ideas had merit with regard to Scientology, particularly when the sampling bias of hostility towards CoS noted in a previous post is accounted for, then AnonLover’s survey should have had far more than 37% in the other category.

    The data make it clear – either Lewis’ ideas are wrong or they simply do not generalise to Scientology (and I suspect the same would be true for other groups of extreme abuse). Also, am I the only one who finds it disturbing that a survey featuring only two ex-Scientologists, with absolutely no accounting for factors unique to Scientology, is being applied to discredit ex-Scientologists?
    • Like Like x 2
  8. Anonymous Member

    I accept that. But given that your sampling size was much higher, and given that Lewis’ hypothesis should have made your sampling biased towards ‘deprogramming’, I think it is strong enough to draw some firm conclusions that Lewis if fos on this topic when it comes to Scientology.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Anonymous Member

    If he accepts that people can be "coercively deprogrammed," did he ever say anything about people being "coercively programmed"?
  10. AnonLover Member

    more clarification for the sake of fairness... to call the exit survey mine, is the same as calling the big list of those who have spoken out as RightOn's list. I am merely the cheerleader that keeps it going. It was originally a group project where a respectable academic source gave me high-level goals to target in general, a sociology major gave me pointers on where to find sociology-type examples to model our questionnaire after, and 5 or 6 ex-scientologists helped me craft the actual questions and answers with a dozen or more rounds of copyedits spanning nearly 2months before it was finalized.

    also - the inspiration for the exit survey was a product of my spitting mad outrage at lewis' commercial demographics survey he released for ex-members in late 2009 ( that is 99% verbatim straight out of a marketing 102 college textbook, and only 1 or 2 weakly worded questions added specifically pertaining to involvement in CofS. It had no basis in sociology, psychology or cultic studies whatsoever, and setup such that the only usefulness it could serve would be to identify potential revenue sectors for marketing scientology goods and services amongst apostates. ergo - it only served a purpose that was entirely conducive to the cult's interests and as with ALL of Lewis' work - helping people understand, heal and recover from how they were victimized is totally irrelevant and in the complete opposite direction of what he continually strives to do: neutralize apostate opinion.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Herro Member

    It can't be both?
  12. Anonymous Member

    Yes it is.
  13. Zak McKracken Member

    Let's do this scientifically:

    Who here thinks of the "big list of >1000 ex-culties who blew" as RightOn's List?
    Who doesn't?

    my vote:
    [X] does
  14. AnonLover Member

    oh you (rolls eyes)
  15. OTBT Member

  16. Anonymous Member

    Some more thoughts on this, of a more speculative nature.

    Consider cases of child sexual abuse. For those children it can often be the case that they do not realise that what they have experienced was wrong. Children who were raised in fucked-up environments often regard their childhoods as ‘normal’ since they have no frame of reference against which to evaluate whether such was wrong. It is only when these children, sometimes when they reach adulthood, are educated on what constitutes sexual abuse that they realise it was wrong. This education can come from counselling, the authorities, the support of new friends and acquaintances in their life and from campaigners in organisations that deal with rape or sexual abuse.

    Imagine we applied Lewis’ methodology to these cases. Would it transpire that children who were educated by counsellors, the authorities or campaigners would have a more negative/hostile view of the sexual abuse they experienced? Would it transpire that children who did not receive such education, and still do not realise why sexual abuse is wrong, would tend to have a less negative/hostile view? Would we then conclude, given that it is almost certain the former group would have more negative/hostile feelings, that the testimony of people who received such education is unreliable?

    I don’t think anybody would dispute the date, but I doubt they would accept the given conclusion. The thing is that I see a lot of parallels between the above and what occurs with ex-cult members, particularly if the cult involved is particularly abusive. Cultism is so far beyond a normal person’s frame of reference that, without being educated in the field, they simply do not realise that what they experienced was abusive – in much the same way as children who experienced sexual abuse may not recognise what such was wrong.

    Too speculative or is this a reasonable argument?
  17. Anonymous Member

    It's reasonable. In addition, I'm skeptic that exes can truly be effective in deprogramming those who were caught up in the exact cult as the deprogrammers had once been members of. There are traits common in common that drew them all into it. If I had a family member who left scientology, the last person I'd want deprogramming my loved member would be someone who'd once been a scientologist. No offense, but there's bias and no guarantee that the deprogrammer is 100% free of the cult's mindfuck himself/herself.
  18. Anonymous Member

    No, because religion is good and cults are bad.
  19. BLiP Member

    Lewis' cult-apologist statements extend to this one:
    The idiocy of this statement is in his assertion that the general public has itself become partially brainwashed in its apparent unquestioning acceptance of the "anti-cult" ideology. Perhaps the application of Occam's razor might be required rather than a feeble and illogical attempt to explain why no one is buying his flavour bullshit. The simple reality is that brainwashing and mind control are essential to cults. And the public know that full well. There is a multitude of "alternative religious movements" which, while they have their detractors, are not cults and do not adopt brainwashing/mind control tactics. After a review of a lot of this material regarding Lewis I'm beginning to wonder if he's not just a scholar-for-hire and is heading down the same road as the mad Lord Monckton.

    Prove me wrong.
  20. Anonymous Member

  21. Anonymous Member

    I agree with your conclusion, but for differing reasons. Often ex-cult members can hold a revisionistic version of their experiences, which can make them counter-productive when persuading others to leave. Tory Magoo springs to mind here. Also, different people can get dragged into Scientology for very different reasons. What appealed to one person can vary quite drastically with another person. There can be a tendency with some ex-cult members to overfocus on their own experiences and what had appealed to them – which can lead those ex-cult members to once again be counterproductive. A good example of this can be when an ex-SO member is describing SO experiences to a non-SO Scientology public, which due to being so unrelated to the non-SO Scientology public’s experiences that the attempt backfires.

    All that being said, there are a number of ex-Scientologists who ‘get it’, and this may stem from their ability to honestly hold themselves and their person to the proper scrutiny to recognise their own failings which allowed Scientology to exploit them. These ex-members far outperform any deprogrammer, but they appear to be few and far between.
    This is an important point that deserves extra emphasis. It is the actions and infliction of harm by groups that warrant attention, not the fact that they are new or different. There are plenty of new religious movements that I would be fine with my family/friends joining. Only a subset of these groups are genuinely harmful, and the manner in which people like Lewis lump all groups, regardless of harms inflicted, into a single category is extremely disingenuous/ignorant.
    • Like Like x 2
  22. Herro Member

  23. Anonymous Member

    A pictorial representation to hopefully stop the thread from being further fagged up:
    • Like Like x 1
  24. Anonymous Member

    Does it mean all Religious groups are cults?
  25. Anonymous Member

    He's my favorite actor.
  26. Anonymous Member

    Don't know any Scientologist who was successfully deprogrammed. Some were subjected to deprogramming but it didn't work on them. Barb Swartz filed charges against her deprogrammers and ended Cyril Vosper's career. I heard that Rick Ross said that "interventions" works better on Christians. I wouldn't dirty my hands with deprogramming. Involuntary imprisonment is a criminal offence.
  27. Anonymous Member

  28. Anonymous Member

    Hope that nobody deprograms us one day. It is not just about religions or cults. There are people who wants to deprogram others from their political or other views.
  29. Zak McKracken Member

    they can steal my ruby
    they can drain my c
    they can slay my cobol
    and php
    they can drink my java, correct my lisp
    but they'll never "NEW" my basic
  30. Miranda Member

    Received these dox from a trusted user who posts here regularly but who wishes to remain anonymous in this case--regarding Lewis's account of Scientology's seizure of CAN. The dox indicate that Lewis published allegations about Cynthia Kisser that were later found to be untrue and were repudiated by his publisher. Check dates before making assumptions, etc. Below is link to dox, and below that is the accompanying note from the source.

    Note: The Washington Post reported in 1995 that Lewis and others were paid by Aum Shinrikyu. Note that the quoted user doesn't specify whether Lewis was paid for anything more than travel expenses.
    • Like Like x 2
  31. AnonLover Member

  32. Miranda Member

    I wish I could tell you who to thank. THANK YOU, anonymous leaker!
    • Like Like x 1
  33. Anonymous Member

    Do you have any dox to indicate Lewis got paid over and above travel expenses? If you don't then, especially considering the travel expenses were disclosed at the time, I would warn against making this claim.

    Moderator note: After consulting an attorney, I feel safe with the post above. The quoted message doesn't state that Lewis was paid for anything more than travel expenses. I added a reference to a Washington Post article stating that he was paid by AS. Thanks for your caution.
  34. OTBT Member

    • Like Like x 1
  35. OTBT Member

  36. OTBT Member

  37. Anonymous Member

    Never heard of one single Scientologist being successfully "deprogrammed". Many don't like DM and leave on their own.
  38. DeathHamster Member

    Slightly askew from the thread:

    1989-10-27 Informal meeting in Salt Lake City of NRM social scientists (who?)
    1989-12-20 Memorandum to Social scientists concerned about forensic and related issues dealing with New Religious Movements Hadden, Barker and Bromley, Scientology lawyer Eric Lieberman. Rick Ross annotated

    I've been trying to find out more about that Salt Lake City meeting, and well as find the scanned copy of that Memorandum. Editor notes by the anonymous poster to ARS (1998) say:
  39. DeathHamster Member

    Hadden's reaction to his memorandum being leaked:
    A reference of that newspaper could be handy.
  40. Anonymous Member

    Depends on how you define "deprogramming". Anonymous "deprograms" scilons all the time by spreading irrefutable evidence that scientology is a destructive cult.

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