Stop Telling Child Abuse Survivors to Forgive their Abusers

Laura FoxAug 14, 2020·4 min read

You cannot police someone’s healing process.

Photo by Bahaa A. Shawqi from Pexels

There’s a bunch of things you shouldn’t say to an abuse survivor, but the biggest no-no is insisting they need to forgive their abuser in order to move forward.

Forgiveness is healthy. It doesn’t necessarily mean reconciliation or condoning what happened. PsychologyToday.com defines forgiveness as the release of resentment or anger and describes it as “vitally important for the mental health of those who have been victimized.”

However, forgiveness is a process. And how someone navigates this journey is deeply personal to them. They have to do it in their way and their time. And sometimes, forgiveness is not what someone needs to do in order to heal. Insisting that forgiveness is the only way they can move on it extremely damaging.

I have tried to forgive my parents. But I can’t. It’s very hard to forgive people who show no remorse. If I am ever going to forgive them, I need time. And when people tell me to let go of my anger, it negatively impacts my mental health. You can’t just let go of emotions if you don’t experience them first. It’s unreasonable to ask someone to detach from something you never gave them the space to attach to in the first place.

When I am told to let go of my anger, I bottle it up to please people. The anger gets worse and I engage in unhealthy coping mechanisms. These behaviours are what people think I will engage in if I allow myself to be angry. But in reality, bottling up negative emotions is what leads to acting out and self-sabotage.

Anger is not a bad emotion. It is something everyone experiences. It can be expressed in unhealthy ways, and that is often what happens when survivors are told to “forgive” and “let go of their anger”. The anger isn’t being allowed to be expressed, so it has to go somewhere. Unfortunately, it is often directed towards the survivor themselves.

There are links between being a survivor of child abuse and developing addictions. In a report by the National Institute of Health, it was found that more than a third of teenagers who have experienced abuse will have a substance misuse disorder before their eighteenth birthday.

Child abuse survivors are also more likely to experience suicidal ideation in later life. Unfortunately, the likelihood of this ideation escalating in risk is very high, with survivors being two to three times more likely to attempt suicide.

This anger is also directed at other people, with survivors being more at risk of committing crimes.

“…participants with histories of childhood physical and emotional abuse further showed that female participants were more likely to exhibit internalizing problems such as depression, social withdrawal, and anxiety during middle childhood, which in turn increased the risk of adult crime. In contrast, male participants were more likely to exhibit externalizing behavioral problems, such as aggression, hostility, and delinquency during middle childhood, which subsequently led to adult criminal behavior.”

Pathways Between Child Maltreatment and Adult Criminal Involvement

These behaviour appear to be what people fear the survivor will display if they express their anger. And I believe the advice to forgive and let go of anger is usually well-meaning. However, survivors like me have been given that advice since forever. And since forever, survivors like me have not been given the space to address and understand this anger, which leads to unhealthy coping mechanisms.

The only way we can truly let go and be free is by having the support to experience our anger. And that’s okay because anger can be experienced in a constructive way. Matthew Tull PhD of VeryWellMind describes anger as a valid emotion that pushes us to express what we need. He gives tips on how to channel this anger constructively, so others hear what you need rather than just hearing that you are angry.

I believe a survivor’s reaction shouldn’t be policed. It’s hard to express anger constructively when you are experiencing pain you have been keeping a secret for so long. Sometimes, a survivor will need to explode and express anger in ways that make you uncomfortable before they can learn to channel it in healthy ways.

Cutting short this healing process with assertions that the survivor needs to let go of this anger is retraumatising. For so long they will have been punished for expressing negative emotions in response to what has happened to them. If I cried or showed I was struggling to cope with how my parents were treating me, they would punish me more. So when I say I am angry with them, it hurts me deeply when someone tells me I shouldn’t be.

If we really care about survivors, we need to support them even if we don’t understand their journey. They have made it this far, so we need to trust they will continue to heal. But they need to do this in their way. And if they cannot forgive their abusers and let go of their anger, that needs to be accepted.

I would argue that my anger and inability to forgive are what helps me to move forward. If I didn’t have these feelings, I would most likely reconcile with my parents and get trapped in the cycle of abuse again. This anger is because I care about myself now. I understand I deserve better. I understand it wasn’t my fault now.

A survivor has most likely been controlled for the entirety of their childhood by people who were supposed to care about them. As people who are supposed to care about them too, please don’t control how they heal from their abuse. Be part of them achieving the freedom they have always been deprived of.


RETRIEVED https://medium.com/@ashyfox/stop-telling-child-abuse-survivors-to-forgive-their-abusers-be8226ee2426

First day realisations …

Today’s the day! Although the victim of a childhood full of ingrained occasions of #childabuse (through institutions of church-school-family) another Supervised Occassion involved ‘upgrades(?)’ to previously denied instances. This time round, after expected “memory losses”, the father admitted to remembering that some of these moments had been exchanged, yet had been ignored as simply “unbelievable childhood stories”.

Retrieved image | DuckDuckGo

Intriguingly, these same scenario had been raised in multiple Counselling calls, fore-planning an effective way to deal with them. Denial, Blame-shifting + Dismissal were included – along with a regular threat of ‘violence’ (in his ‘coping strategy’!). Counselling, for the parents had also been raised – in coping with the ‘Institutional grooming’, occurring amongst various groups.


Family + reconnection …

Posted on 

Family contact may occur, in the midst of #childabuse #counselling. However, when the unknown parent disagrees with the losses of the child (victim), not much is gained in a reconnection.


RESOURCES


Anstatt, Tony. (2021). Family + reconnection … . https://royalcommbbc.blog/2021/02/16/family-reconnection/

Family + reconnection …

Family contact may occur, in the midst of #childabuse #counselling. However, when the unknown parent disagrees with the losses of the child (victim), not much is gained in a reconnection.

Learning the facts is the first step to preventing child sexual abuse.

Through knowing these basic steps, we become more aware of our safety.

Learning the facts is the first step to preventing child sexual abuse.

10 Habits Of Manipulative People

NOTE following a recent reposting of our recent MindControl article, there have been some interested views from our sister-site (SDBC_RC). Below is a snapshot, with details of the 10 Habits following.

Clip from Sound familiar ..,

Matt Duczeminski A passionate writer who shares lifestlye tips on Lifehack

It can be hard to detect whether someone is manipulative upon first meeting them. Unfortunately, their selfish nature often goes unnoticed until you’ve become too involved in their lives to simply cut and run. Once they’ve gotten close to you, these Machiavellian schemers will do anything it takes to keep you around, all for the sake of using you in one way or another. Perhaps the worst part of being stuck in a manipulative friendship is it makes you doubt the genuineness of others, which can mean constantly second-guessing other relationships.

If you have a “friend” who exhibits the following traits, you should try to cut them out of your life as soon as possible.

1. They play innocent

Manipulators have a way of playing around with the truth to portray themselves as the victim. I once had a “friend” who would regularly make me feel bad for not spotting him five bucks to buy a pack of cigarettes—even though I detest smoking. Looking back on those days, I realize I was being used. He made me feel like a bad friend for not lending him money to support a disgusting habit, when in actuality he was the bad friend for even asking for the money in the first place.

2. They play dumb

Manipulative people will drain the energy of everyone around them by looking to their friends for help, only to go ahead and do whatever they want anyway. When their friends call them out on it, they’ll be ready with excuse after excuse. “It’s my life, I’ll do what I want,” or “Let me make my own mistakes.” That’s totally fine if that’s how they choose to live, but they shouldn’t solicit advice if they don’t want to hear the truth. It’s a waste of the other person’s time and energy, and can damage their confidence in the value of the advice they give.

3. They rationalize their behavior

Along with not taking their friends’ advice, manipulative people make their negative behavior seem like the only option. They make it seem to you that they made the right decision, even though you know better from an objective point of view. They often seek to “win” arguments, rather than coming to a consensus with the other party. The implication here is that they weren’t truly listening to what you had to say at all. They were just waiting for you to finish so they could offer a rebuttal, regardless of how sound your advice was.

4. They change the subject often

Since manipulative people only really care about themselves, they ultimately will steer conversation toward their own needs any chance they get. They’ll do this especially when they know they’re wrong about something but don’t want to admit it. So, instead of validating the other person’s opinion, they’ll just change the subject to something innocuous or otherwise unrelated to the previous topic. This helps them avoid the truth in a roundabout way that’s fairly unnoticeable to others.

5. They tell half-truths

Manipulative people tend to mold the truth to their advantage. They’ll often hide information that they know will expose them as liars, acting as if this is somehow better than telling a straight-out lie. Manipulators approach all interactions as if they’re in a court of law, where what they say can be used against them. By acting in this way, they can honestly say “I never said that.” Yes, you technically never did say that, but the way you skirted the truth wasn’t exactly right.

6. They induce guilt

Along with claiming innocence, manipulative people also make others feel guilty. There may be times in relationships where you’ll find you simply don’t have the time or energy to deal with certain situations, and the manipulative person will make you feel like you’re “not there for him.” They may even get you to put your own well-being on the back-burner so they’ll have somebody to complain to and seek advice from (advice which they may not heed, anyway).

7. They insult others

Manipulators are rude and abrasive by nature. All true friends can feel comfortable messing with each other by poking fun innocuously, but manipulative people go way overboard with the jabs and insults. They do this in social situations to inconspicuously undermine others and establish a sense of dominance. Manipulators never got over that high-school mentality, where it was “cool” to make fun of others and make them feel small by using nothing but their words.

8. They bully others

Manipulative people are bullies. This goes beyond insults and often involves alienation and the spreading of rumors. Again, this is childish behavior, but it is often exhibited by immature, manipulative adults. Actions such as ignoring certain people in a group, not letting them voice their opinions, or leaving them behind are some of the more “adult” ways to bully. Manipulators will use these methods to establish dominance. In truth, these people are incredibly self-conscious and have low self-esteem, and will hurt anyone around them in order to feel better about themselves.

9. They minimize their behavior

Manipulators make it seem like their words and deeds are “not that big a deal.” Ironically, most of the time it’s them who has made a big deal about things. That is, until they hear something they don’t like and turn the tables on the other party. They clearly don’t show any empathy for the people who have spent valuable time and energy trying to help them, and instead shift the blame onto everyone else. They know they have a problem, but they make it seem like it’s the world that’s out to get them and not the other way around.

10. They blame others

As I said, manipulators shift blame constantly. They skate through life without taking any sort of responsibility for their actions. They either flat out don’t admit they did anything wrong, or they have some explanation to make their actions sound reasonable given the circumstances. Manipulative people simply don’t live by any code of ethics, and when it catches up with them, they’ll point the finger anywhere else except for at themselves.


RETRIEVED https://www.lifehack.org/294861/10-habits-manipulative-people

The National Redress Scheme – Newsletter

National Redress Scheme – Update

21 January 2021

This newsletter covers an update on the National Redress Scheme (the Scheme).  It provides a link to new video and easy read factsheet resources, an update on institutions and recent Scheme data.

The update contains material that could be confronting or distressing. Sometimes words or images can cause sadness or distress or trigger traumatic memories, particularly for people who have experienced past abuse or childhood trauma. 

Support is available to help you if you need it.  To find out more, go to www.nationalredress.gov.au/support.
If you need immediate support, 24-hour telephone assistance is available through:

A New Video Resource

The Scheme is pleased to inform you that a new video designed to provide information to applicants on how to complete the Statutory Declaration when applying to the Scheme has been published.

Our hope is that the video, along with the previously published videos, ‘Overview of the National Redress Scheme’, ‘Applying to the National Redress Scheme’, and ‘Direct Personal Response’, will enhance awareness, engagement and support for all people who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse and are considering applying to the Scheme. 

You can view the video on the Scheme’s website: https://www.nationalredress.gov.au/resources/national-redress-scheme-videos

Easy Read Factsheet

The Scheme has also published a factsheet for people applying to the National Redress Scheme in an ‘Easy Read’ format.  The factsheet is designed to be more accessible for those applicants, and supporters, who are facing literacy, language and other barriers.

This will be followed by six theme-specific shorter factsheets to be published in early 2021.

Two additional Factsheets have been published: Information for support persons, which gives information for support persons who are assisting someone that is applying to the Scheme, and Legal Support, which gives information about the legal support services available to those applying to the Scheme.

You can view these resources on the Scheme’s website: Resources | National Redress Scheme

Institutions

The Scheme is continuously working with institutions that have been named in applications or identified by other means to encourage them to join and participate in the Scheme. To date the Commonwealth, all state and territory governments and 408 non-government institutions covering around 60,767 sites such as churches, schools, homes, charities and community groups across Australia are participating.

A total of 158 non-government institutions committed to join and finalise on-boarding by no later than 31 December 2020. Of these, 31 institutions will be declared in declaration 1, 2021 due to the department being unable to finalise their administrative requirements by the 31 December deadline.

For the latest information about institutions, visit our website: https://www.nationalredress.gov.au/institutions

Application progress as at 15 January 2021

As at 15 January 2021, the Scheme:

  • had received 9,232 applications.
  • had made 5,487 decisions.
  • issued 4,971 outcomes.
  • finalised 4,660 applications, including 4,620 payments totaling approximately $385.2 million.
  • had made 589 offers of redress, which are currently with applicants to consider.
  • was processing 3,460 applications.

Find out more

To find out more about the Scheme, go to www.nationalredress.gov.au or call 1800 737 377 from Australia or +61 3 6222 3455 from overseas.

For regular updates about the Department of Social Services and the Scheme, you can ‘like’ or ‘follow’ the Australian Families Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/FamiliesInAustralia/Copyright © 2021 Australian Government, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you opted in via our website. 

Our mailing address is:
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How much do the elite take care of their own

From ‘When British Royals Are Pedophiles, It’s Called Peccadilloes’ (Frank Report 2019), James Saville fronts the article (as follows).

James Saville

Through reading of this article, attention is drawn again and again by the following second paragraph:

Watch the deck being reshuffled over and over again as the “elite” take care of their own.

Despite receiving intense amounts of counselling, therapies, medications and distractions: many CSA Victims continue to speak about the intensity of their CARC Session and-or their NRS Submission, ripple effects within marriages and families who’re reluctant to admit that these (unkown) Abuses “ever happened” (‘under their responsibility’), disputes and victim-blaming that may result when the CSA Victim has to retell/relive these past experiences to uninvolved relations ‘for interest sake’, splits that may often be blamed on the CSA Victim for ‘being the needle in the haystack’ of their family separation.

  • many CSA Victims continue to speak about the intensity of their CARC Session and-or;
  • their NRS Submission;
  • ripple effects within marriages and families who’re reluctant to admit that these (unkown) Abuses “ever happened” (‘under their responsibility’);
  • common descriptions of young victims being so targeted, that they did not even know of what parts of the human anatomy were involved: “before I had ever even heard of sex or knew what anatomy was used” (Shivani, 5th paragraph, 2019);
  • patterns of predators should always be reported + shared with others in that community type (just as this RCbbc.blog). this allows for cautious advice to be shared with others (previous, existing + potential);
  • disputes and victim-blaming that may result when the CSA Victim has to retell/relive these past experiences to uninvolved relations ‘for interest sake’l;
  • an earlier victim of a known CSA Predator has gone from being victim, to re-enacting these same behaviours on a new victim. these actions should not occurr + Police should be contacted ASAP;
  • splits that may often be blamed on the CSA Victim for ‘being the needle in the haystack’ of their family separation;

Hike these are only some of the potential ‘haystack needles’, they do describe some of the experiences that some of the BBC Students had experienced, witnessed or ignored during their enrolment. These articles were never meant to make accusations, only to provide another POV in the often controlled world of ‘free media exposure’. Comments are welcomed, yet relevant threats will now be reported through applicable QPS CPIU channels (previous OCA comments included). As overlapping instances of Qld Baptist’s SDBC have been cited, these warnings are also made via SDBC_RC.

Prince Charles with Sir James, suspected of being a long standing pedophile.

BBC. (2020). Brisbane Boys’ College. https://www.bbc.qld.edu.au

Commonwealth of Australia. (2017). Child Abuse Royal Commission. https://www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au

Department of Social Services. (2020). National Redress Scheme. https://www.nationalredress.gov.au

OCA. (2020). Brisbane Boys’ College Old Collegians’ Association. http://oldcollegians.com.au

Qld Police Service. (2020). Child Protection Investigation Service. https://www.police.qld.gov.au/units/victims-of-crime/child-protection

SDBC_RC Blog. (2020). Sunnybank District Baptist Church Blog. https://sdbcrc.wordpress.com

Shivani. (2019). When British Royals Are Pedophiles, It’s Called Peccadilloes. https://frankreport.com/2019/08/13/when-british-royals-are-pedophiles-its-called-peccadilloes/


Royal Commission and Brisbane Boys’ College. 2020.

Brainwashing in the local institutional church

For there are many unruly men, empty talkers and mind-deluders, whose mouths must needs be stopped, men who are upsetting whole houses, teaching the things which ought not to be taught – for the sake of base gain. Titus 1:10-11

To demonstrate their duty and submission to their spiritual overseer
and pastor David Koresh, many “Christians”
were willing to be transformed into human torches in the town of Waco, Texas.

To demonstrate their obedience and duty to “Obey them that have the rule over you,” many “Christians” submitted to their spiritual overseer and Pastor
the Rev. Jim Jones, and “partook of the communion of death” in the jungles of Guyana, South America.

Introduction

Many Christians will be quick to express the extremeness” of the examples mentioned above in regards to people following their leaders, yet nevertheless, there is a lot more relevance to what has just been said than most of us care to recognize – relevancy that lands itself right at our own doorsteps.

When someone joins themselves to an organization or an institution called the “local church,” the times that will be spent there are very formative.  

These formative times give ample opportunities for the “religious leaders” or “spiritual overseers” to brainwash the people by planting fears that will literally keep a person in bondage to their particular brand of religious system for life, or keep a person from looking at anything else for fear of being deceived. 

These formative years provide an abundant opportunity as well for the “church leaders” to implant concepts which will actually keep the person from ever seeing the truth, even though the truth may be right before their eyes! If a particular doctrine or practice is continually being implanted into one’s mind time after time, using vivid graphic illustrations, a handful of Scriptures, add a little fear, and of course, throw in some “awesome respect for church authorities” and then, when that person reads plain Bible texts which tells them something different, they will not be able to clearly see what is directly in front of them. They will see the text through the filters that were put on their mind. They will not see the text as it really is.

It’s absolutely amazing how many times a Scripture is read in church that completely contradicts one of their main teachings and no one ever comments about the contradiction. 

There was a time at the beginning perhaps when they asked those hard questions, but when they were rebuked or ridiculed and shamed for asking questions that caused division, they learned not to question anymore. They learned to go along with the crowd. 

The scales over the eyes have become so thick that everything, including the concept of God Himself, becomes gross darkness. But they do not know it is darkness on account of the fact that they have been seeing that way for quite some time now.  The “leaders” have locked them in to their own little system.  To stray into a different area of thought is almost unthinkable for many of them.  

Yea, rather the “leaders” view it as tantamount to heresy!

I say without intending offense that such exclusiveness differs little from the two extreme examples mentioned above or any other authoritarian groups. 

Victims of such brainwashing have lost their personal autonomy and in some cases are reduced to almost a zombie-like state!  A person who goes to their church Sunday after Sunday, and hears basically the same underlying message repeatedly for a lifetime, has little hope of ever understanding TRUTH as it is revealed in all of the Scriptures. 

But these people will refuse to learn anything different from what they have been indoctrinated in.  Why is that?
The reasons are simple but very important to be aware of and understand — BRAINWASHING and FEAR.

Brainwashing 101

Brainwashing:

1) any method of controlled systematic indoctrination, especially one based on repetition or    confusion; 2) inducing a person to modify their beliefs, attitudes, or behavior by conditioning   through various forms of pressure; 3) the ability to apply procedures or methods so as to effect a radical change in the ideas and beliefs of a person.

Because brainwashing is such an invasive form of influence, it requires the complete isolation and dependency of the subject, which is why you mostly hear of brainwashing occurring either in a religious system of some kind or at prison camps

The agent (the brainwasher) must have complete control over the target. (the brainwashee)  Sound familiar?  Everything pertaining to the targets life depends on the will of the agent. (your spiritual overseer)  Every step the agent takes will result in advancing his own self-centered agenda.  

In the brainwashing process, the agent will systematically break down the target’s identity to the point that it doesn’t work anymore. 

These brainwashers will hone in on a person’s weaknesses by first making their target comfortable, then get personal and confidential information to exploit the person later.  Many “church leaders” for example will project themselves with false humility; posing as spiritual men.  They take the place of the person’s physical father and successfully use this emotional leverage for the deep seated need for approval in order to motivate and control them.

The goal is to make the adult followers as much like their own children as possible.  When people accept this, then they accept human authority in their lives to the point where they are hopelessly dependent on the authority, as children are with their parents.  One technique the “church leader” will use to obtain this type of parental control is to keep them off balance to foster dependency, making it hard for them to make their own decisions. 

When this kind of cunning craftiness is plotted to deceive the followers into functioning like children, they become much more manageable, being easily influenced by false doctrines and other tricks of deception.

From here on in, the targets (a.k.a: “church members”) willingly give up their minds and their souls at the institutional church doors; allowing themselves to be induced with the godless spiritual narcotic of “duly authorized rule” slowly and deliberately being administered by their “church overseers and pastors.”   Having now been deprived and numbed to any sense of right or wrong, they mindlessly, and without any shame or twinge of conscience, follow and obey everything they are told to do within those institutional walls.

Even if it means destroying your own family “for the higher good,” the higher good of course being in conformance to the wishes of your spiritual overseer and his local church.

This is what happens when we follow the ways and the teachings of men.  How many times in the Scriptures have we been warned over, and over, and over again concerning man’s ways and traditions; taking heed to what we hear; testing and proving the spirits, etc.  But unfortunately, it is very rare today to see a “Berean”.  

Remember that religious brainwashing can be extraordinarily powerful and dangerous to anyone, but especially to those who do not have the ability to withstand the religious pressure.  With this kind of pressure and these kinds of fear tactics, is it any wonder that some Christians don’t think for themselves?

The best thing to do regarding your professing Christian relatives and friends is to realize that, while they are well-meaning in their beliefs, they have been brainwashed. Brainwashed people cannot see the Truth that is right before their eyes and they will deny facts that do not agree with their beliefs. Brainwashing causes a disconnect in the mind of the Christian believer between demonstrable reality and religious fantasy. Reality is filtered out in favor of the religious dogma/fantasy.

Thanks Brother. You’re a great testimony to the Church!”

Enter: Elizabeth Smart

Remember the abduction and brainwashing of Elizabeth Smart back in 2002?  The scary similarities are astounding.

Just to briefly recap: “Under orders from God,” two religious abductors, a husband and wife team, took (kidnapped) Elizabeth from her bedroom and held her captive for nine months before she was finally rescued.

The effect of these religious abductors cannot be ignored.  Normally, when you try to ensnare someone to a belief system, it requires a dense network of fellow believers to indoctrinate you on their values and rituals, as well as exert social pressure.  In Elizabeth Smart’s case, there were only two people, a man and his wife.  Yet the forcefulness of their beliefs and tactics was enough to sway this young girl, just mature enough to comprehend spiritual ideas but not experienced enough to judge them skeptically.

For quite a number of months, the trio traveled around the western United States and at no time did Elizabeth attempt to escape, even when wandering through a grocery store by herself, the brainwashing had so well taken effect.
Someone has said that “under stress, a person can go into survival mode…..you suddenly start to identify with your captors.  Its called traumatic bonding, and people actually come to see their abductors as their saviors.” 
Elizabeth Smart’s failure to take advantage of opportunities to escape or call for help are all symptomatic of someone who has been brainwashed. 

She was once photographed three months after her abduction at a party where she could easily have raised alarms, but instead showed no signs of needing help.  One witness who supposedly saw Elizabeth Smart at the party with her captors said she “stood silently behind her captor submissively, robed in what some have called a berka.Asked why the women wore these garments and were veiled, the captor reportedly said, “To protect them from the sins of the world.”

Another witness stated that she seemed like she was part of the family.

One Salt Lake City resident told reporters he provided shelter for Mitchell, his wife, and Elizabeth for several days and that the girl never expressed fear, tried to escape, call police or sought his help. 

One day, when police finally noticed the trio on a street corner, they pulled Elizabeth aside by herself.   When initially questioned by police, Elizabeth Smart identified herself as “Augustine” and seemingly attempted to frustrate the efforts of officers to help her.

According to a report from Newsweek, Elizabeth told police, “I know you think I’m that Elizabeth Smart girl who ran away, but I’m not.”  The report goes on to say that “even as the police took her in a car, she denied her identity.” 
According to another report from Time, “Three times she told them her name was Augustine and she insisted to them that she was traveling with her parents.”

When the police insisted that she was Elizabeth Smart, she replied with a non-committal phrase: “Thou sayest.” 

After finally admitting her identity, Elizabeth repeatedly asked police what would happen to her companions, Brian David Mitchell and Wanda Ilene Barzee.  Police said she showed concern only for their welfare, not her own. 

How did Mitchell, a self-proclaimed “prophet” and supposed messenger called by God, change this Salt Lake City teenager into his willing follower?  How did he hold Elizabeth within a “world” of his own creation?

One method he employed was to control her environment, and through brainwashing, Mitchell controlled Elizabeth’s completely!  He also sought to isolate her from her familiar support system of family and friends.
After gaining this environmental control, Mitchell then effectively could filter all information flowing to Elizabeth. 

She became dependent upon him to interpret everything, from where she can go and what she can do, to Bible passages and their meanings and even to the meaning of life.  He created for her a new language, giving her a new name and identity, inculcating her into his religious belief system.  The young girl had no outside frame of reference or accurate feedback from others to oppose the growing influence of this “messenger from God.”

Step-by-step this control led to the undue influence witnessed by those interviewed.  Elizabeth gradually seemed to assume a cult identity, which included the new name “Augustine.” She became robotic; believing and doing whatever the messenger from God said.

Once Mitchell had Elizabeth, he immediately began to drive home his belief system, laid out in a dense 27-page manifesto in which he declared himself “God’s man.”  He knew the right words to say because he was a Mormon and she was Mormon.  This connection between them, a shared knowledge of religious doctrine and reference points, allowed the hold over her to become that much stronger. 

Paul Martin, a mental-health counselor, said:

“For every Elizabeth Smart out there, I can tell you there are probably hundreds of                thousands a year that don’t go reported. There are many that join groups like that,               maybe not as bizarre but equally destructive…….
These are serial killers of the soul. It’s a national tragedy.” 

Geraldine Stahly, a psychology professor at California State University at San Bernardino said:

“People who spend long stretches of time with their captors often begin identifying with them. This is called the Stockholm Syndrome. She said: If they are entangled in a group for a considerable length of time, they actually begin to have distortion in their thinking; to take the side of their abductors and see all outsiders as a threat.”

Coming Home To Roost

Have you been or are you, like Elizabeth, in a situation where some church authority figure threatened your life or family, and then, like Elizabeth, had managed to placate this overwhelming authority figure into NOT harming you, thus forming a close emotional bond?  

Like Elizabeth, have you been or are you “in awe” of this “duly authorized being from God?” 

Like Elizabeth, have you been or has your real identity been stripped away layer by layer and replaced with an artificial construct imposed from without, thus transforming you into a “dumb sheep?” 

And like Elizabeth, did you or do you feel “warmth for your awesome spiritual overseer” which removes any desire to escape from your captivity?

Reading about the brainwashing of this poor young girl, with point after point of similarity jumping out, you begin to understand better why so many members of local institutional churches are so blinded and in bondage to their religious systems. They have been brainwashed, and when confronted with solid Biblical evidence and facts that goes against their religious babble, it just washes off them as water off a duck’s back. 

Remember. Elizabeth continued to deny to the police that she was Elizabeth, even when facing a photo of herself on a wanted poster!  

That is the power of religious brainwashing. 

If she could look straight into a photograph of herself and not see that it was her in the photo, how much more could a Baptist or Presbyterian or Catholic look into more obscure facts and not see them as well!  In a five minute discussion between a real Christian and a typical local institutional church member, what chance does solid Scriptural evidence have going up against years and years of intense daily brainwashing?  

Once again, 1 Corinthians 2:14 speaks volumes: 

Now the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God: 
for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot know them, 
because they are spiritually judged.

However blinded they are to their own brainwashing, many people have no problem seeing and pointing out others who are thus inflicted.  A Seventh Day Adventist for example can easily see the brainwashing that has taken hold of a Baptist, and vice versa.  A Reformed individual can easily see the brainwashing that has taken hold of an Armenian or a Roman Catholic, and vice versa.  But neither can see it in himself. 

Gather together into a room one hundred church members from one hundred different denominations, and each one can see in the 99 others the brainwashing; but they can’t see it in themselves.  They all marvel at how blinded the 99 others are to admitting new facts even in the face of mountains of scriptural evidence, yet think themselves not brainwashed, but rather “steadfast and true” when themselves, faced with such scriptural evidence against their own peculiar beliefs, ignore it and continue believing whatever tripe they specialize in.  They not only ignore it, they actually feel they deserve some kind of medal for having been brain-dead and stubborn enough not to be affected by the clear teaching of Scripture.  

In their church view, being closed minded and thick-headed is a virtue, not a vice.  “Look at me, ma! I spent an hour with a Presbyterian and learned nothing!  Praise God!”

The problem with many Christians in our day is their attitude toward the Bible.  They will read their Bible, not expecting to be taught of God from it, but will get their teaching from their pastors, preachers, and commentaries, and then go to the Bible only expecting to find proof for what they have already been taught!  (The sad part is that many of these religious cult leaders will actually put their stamp of approval on such passivity).  

The problem begins when one comes across a passage of scripture which would seem to contradict what they have been taught.  How many of us at times such as these reach for our commentaries or run back to our “pastors” or “elders” and ask them to explain the verse to us rather than calling out to God for help and wisdom.  What do you think your “pastor” will tell you?  

You already know what answer they will give.  That’s why you run to them! 

This is NOT how it should be.  Each Christian has a command from God to “Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15. 

Every Christian needs to ask themselves if they know for sure why they believe what they profess to believe, and to “be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” 1 Peter 3:15

The fact that so many in our day accept a teaching or practice just because it comes from my church or “my pastor” is very troubling in light of the apostle Paul’s words: 

For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.
Acts 20:29-31

The Spirit says clearly that some people will abandon the faith in later times; giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons. 1 timothy 4:1

The apostle Peter warns of the same: 

“But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.” 2 Peter 2:1-2 

How many times has the Lord Himself warned over and again of false prophets and wolves in sheep’s clothing.

They all knew that apostasy would creep into the church very shortly after their departure.  Even a rudimentary study of church history will show that this is exactly what took place.  Christianity absorbed more and more from its surrounding cultures and religions until the pure stream of Truth was thoroughly polluted.  

What is most troubling about this is the average Christian’s reluctance and ambivalence in asking questions about the issues of some of their teachings and practices.  This satanic brainwashing and buffoonery has deceived, and IS deceiving millions of unknowing, often unthinking people into actually believing that:

– Obeying your Pastor is the same as obeying God!

– That “going to Church” is the highest form of worship and is commanded by God!

– That all of your spiritual leaders are clothed with divine authority!

– And that when it comes to a marital issue, a wife is to listen to and follow her Pastor’s counsel, rather than her own      husband!

Indeed, the wolves have been placed in charge of the hen house, and are doing their best to keep the hens ignorant of the slaughter of Truth that is going on.   

CONCLUSION

Once we have been programmed with a belief, be it true or false, we will act as if it is true!  We then instinctively seek to collect facts to support that belief no matter how false it might be! 

This is brainwashing in action; the same kind of brainwashing that inflicted Elizabeth Smart.

Brainwashing feeds off of human pride and a lust for controlThose in “positions of church leadership” have literally commandeered what God gave through His Son, a simple, direct, unencumbered relationship with Him, and have fashioned unto themselves their idol, their golden calf, their own little kingdoms in which they can rule, control, and exercise dominion, unfettered!

But even as Isaiah cried, “Lord, who has believed our report?” (Isaiah 53:1; Romans 10:16), even so, who has believed us?  Yes, who? 

It is almost frightening to see how few professing Christians truly believe and understand what’s going on, and how fewer yet will believe and obey the Scriptures!  The brainwashing has taken full control.  

Christ’s sheep have been brainwashed, corralled, and then mistreated by thieves and robbers for many, many centuries.  The feelings, the thoughts, and the questionings of the average “Christian church member” today have been squelched by their authoritarian, law-mongering overseers. 

Whenever the mind of a Christian is stirred and begins to see the false teachings and practices that are occurring in his church, silence and fear begin to take over and envelope him.  He knows that if he speaks up, his life and the life of his family would be endangered by the very institution that claims to “care for them.”  This is brainwashing at its best.

The words disaffection and  heretic will keep him silent, for all of the members know of the result.

Many of these Christians will continue to just settle into their pews week after week, not even knowing what’s really going on.  Calm, quiet, and with their hollow, far-away look in their eyes, there they stay; totally brainwashed into believing that this is what’s best for them; slothfully satisfied in their captivity, being captivated by their captors!  Even the thought of having to “hunt for their own food” sounds too much like work.  Many wouldn’t even know where to begin.  But why leave?  The “captors” have convinced them that THEIR CAPTIVITY IS THEIR FREEDOM!  

This doping of the mind; this brainwashing is perhaps the most heartbreaking of all.  Many just assemble upon the command of their “church leader” without having the slightest clue of what Christ and His Ecclesia is all about. 

What a sad and pathetic state of affairs is today’s local institutional churches.  Indeed, as Paul Martin said earlier, the Elizabeth Smart’s are being multiplied today many times over.  These people are serial killers of the soul.

When brainwashing gets to the place where “church leaders” will literally turn wives against husbands and brethren against brethren, then it is time to speak loudly and clearly.  When brainwashed believers are taught to actually hate another believer simply because they dared to challenge the pastor, or dared to expose a long standing cherished tradition, the cult and its leaders must be exposed.  

When a church tyrant uses his anti-scriptural “office” and “ministerial dignity” to get control of an individual’s mind and conscience, personal revolt is nearly impossible.  

The poor sheep become scared of everything and everybody especially when they are cut off from asking or sharing the questions and difficulties in their heart.   

Like it or not, this is the description of the brainwashing that is occurring in many churches today encompassing a wide spectrum of denominations.  

It is a man-made, man-sustained system of indoctrination that is fueled by pride, greed, lust, power, money, and control; an indoctrination which has gone far, far “beyond the things which are written.”

Many have been deeply scarred through these diabolical practices and misapplications of men.  The brainwashers that occupy these pulpits are smart and clever, and they understand human nature.  They know how to deceive and they know how to destroy.  There are no words too strong to demonstrate this horrible deception used by this self-serving, hierarchical team of spiritual monsters! 

Many need to heed the admonitions of Paul and James: “Neither give place to the Devil”  Ephesians 4:27

“Be not deceived my beloved brethren.”   James 1:16

Until the people’s eyes are opened and they finally come to realize and act upon the fact that there is a pompous, manipulative, and deceitful ruling class of “church leaders” who will stop at nothing to advance their destructive agendas, they will be doomed to a lifetime of bondage and darkness. 

But it will only be done by and through the aid of the Spirit of God Himself.  Then and only then will you be convinced to STUDY and be READY to change.  Then and only then will you have the mind to comprehend and the courage and bravery to stand up and say ENOUGH! 

Without God’s Spirit; without the One of whom it is written, “He shall guide you into Truth,” all the time in the world will not bring one to the knowledge of the Truth. 

May you find the faith and courage to do what God would have you to do, because doing it will bring you the peace, joy, and freedom that Jesus died to provide.

Ken Cascio                                                    
Webmaster     


RETRIEVED http://www.wickedshepherds.com/BRAINWASHING.html

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Mind control at church | Six tell-tale signs of abusive leaders


MIND CONTROL: SIX TELL-TALE
SIGNS OF ABUSIVE CHURCH LEADERS


1. Idolatry – Create excessive, and sometimes blind, admiration and devotion to a person or group, and their beliefs.

2.  There is a well developed, and often unstated system of rules and codes for behavior.  Teaching God will approve of the members who follow the leader and are loyal to him is of utmost importance.  God is not acting out of grace or mercy.  God is a strict judge of justice who is working directly with and through the leaders who alone know what God really wants.  The Mind Controller becomes their parent, and his followers are treated like children.  They do not need to know everything, but just what the leaders think they need to know.

3.  Almost total dependence on a leader, leaders, and the group, combined with cutting off most of the outside world; especially close friends and relatives.

4.  Systematically using subtle techniques for changing the way people think, what they think, and keep existing member’s thoughts and hearts loyal to the Mind Controller and his cause.  The goal is to have the Mind Controller as the parent, and the adult subjects functioning as his children.

5.  Teaching that the group has all the answers; it has everything good in life and there is nothing else.

6.  Creating an environment of fear in leaving.  Any deserters are punished by shunning, and are vilified and marginalized by ridicule before and/or after they leave. This creates a profoundly deep subconscious fear in the existing members to never leave, so this won’t happen to them.  Anything outside of the group is inferior and of Satan.  It is evil.  There is no rule or doctrine more pure, or better, than the group’s.  Outside is failure and disaster.

There is a lust for power that burns deep inside a lot of men, (and some women).  Most people suppress it, or are never in a position to use it.   Some people are just not smart enough to figure out how to control others.  So-called Christian leaders are not much different. They also still have natures that lusts for power and control.

Satan tried to tempt Jesus with this with his offer to make Him king over the entire earth.  It is a temptation common to all humans.

When a leader has deep insecurities coupled with a licentious lust for control over others, layered thick with deep welling pride, then a wolf, an abusive and divisive leader, emerges.   Like a vortex that begins swirling and sucking everything into themselves, they become incrementally worse and worse, sucking people inward and downward.

This was a common expected problem to deal with for Jesus.  He warned his disciples right after the mother of James and John asked for a place of honor for her sons in the Kingdom.  Jesus said, “You know the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave – just like the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life a ransom for many.” 

Godly leaders need to lead by example, serving others.  Peter was inspired by the Holy Spirit to write:  “Do not lord it over those entrusted to you but rather be examples.”

John strongly rebuked Diotrephes for his wicked words and lengthy malicious speech and for casting others out of the church for unbiblical reasons.  

The Bible warns against Satan disguising himself as an angel of light, and his servants as ministers of righteousness.  An abusive control is deceptive and the doctrines of demons. 

“What, you don’t want any authority in your life? 

Ahh, you’re a sinful rebel, rejecting accountability to your leader!” 

People often just “put up with it”, and allow themselves to be motivated by satanically inspired guilt and fear.

When the abusive authority ridicules others, marginalizes, and puts opponents who threaten their control out of their association, then followers just “put up with it”. The more the followers “put up with it”, the stronger the control becomes and it spirals inward into an increasingly abusive vortex of control.  The abusive authority takes full advantage of the common trait most people have in wanting to appease leaders. 

Christians are especially vulnerable to manipulation by perceived spiritual authority figures, and easily intimidated in large groups by their desire for living quiet and peaceful lives, and respect of authority.

Some clues to help tell if it’s a Mind Control environment:

Deception is heavily used with mind control.  Once the victims pass through the gate of deception and they accept the way they were deceived as rational for “the cause,” then they are set up to deceive others the same way.  They become a slave to deception themselves by believing the end justifies the means.  The lying isn’t looked upon as real lying, since the lying is done for a good purpose; for “the cause” or “the truth.”

These people unwittingly become Mind Controllers themselves by straying from the truth and are exploited by the Master Mind Controller.

By buying into deceiving others, the followers become deceived themselves by not letting the truth control what they say.  The expression, “just trust Your Elders,” is used liberally in these assemblies.  

Mind Controllers hone in on a person’s weaknesses by first making their target comfortable, then get personal and confidential information to exploit the person later.  People are easy to control by a Mind Controller, especially after a vulnerable time of stress in their lives, making them easy targets.  Defense mechanisms are broken down or overloaded, and people are easily controlled.

Many cult leaders project themselves with false humility; as spiritual men.  They take the place of the person’s physical father and successfully use this emotional leverage for the deep seated need for approval in order to motivate and control them.  The goal is to make the adult followers as much like their own children as possible.  When people accept this, then they accept human authority in their lives to the point where they are hopelessly dependant on the authority, as children are with their parents.  One technique used to obtain this type of parental control is to keep them off balance to foster dependency, making it hard for them to make their own decisions. 

When cunning craftiness is plotted to deceive the followers into functioning like children, they become much more manageable, being easily influenced by false doctrines and other tricks of deception. 

Mind Controllers use friendships and peers to leverage control over others.  People tend to doubt themselves and defer to what the group says.  This is why it is so important for a Mind Controller to gather to himself leaders who are loyal followers themselves!  The Mind Controller strives to get all the bases covered first, so the only alternative is to readily accept his teachings and/or policies, no matter how fabricated they may be!  That is why after an hour long message, many followers lose their frame of reference and accept what is being said to them without objection.  At that point into the message, faces begin to relax into a blank neutral stare, enduring the repetitive, rhythmical, droning, and they accept in time, the truth, the truth of the Mind Controller’s choosing.  

Mind Controllers are shrewd manipulators and effective communicators.  Followers are taught to follow orders without hesitation or question, like soldiers in the Army.  The Truth becomes perfect and absolute.  Any flaw pointed out is associated with that person’s flaw, not the Truth.  Follow the Truth even if you don’t understand it.  The living and true God becomes smaller and smaller.

Information is tightly controlled.  When the information is controlled, it restricts the ability to think critically and make sound judgments.  This is done extensively. “Gag orders” are routinely given, instructing followers not to talk to outsiders about assembly matters.

Fear of the outside world and all the bad things that will happen if one leaves, is firmly and methodically embedded in the mind of the followers by creating an “us vs. them.”  The “them” or “other side” or the “outside” is associated with Satan.

Phobias are created to systematically create a fear of deserting the Mind Controller.  The thought they need the Mind Controller or group to grow spiritually, intellectually, and emotionally is drilled in.

Constant reinforcement and interaction with the group and/or Mind Controller and his fellow mind controllers is needed.  The more personal time people can be persuaded to give up the better.  People are ridiculed who want more “family time” or “personal time.”

The Mind Controller stress followers have to “keep rank” and “stick together.” There is a feeling of power from the single-mindedness.

Mind Controllers manipulate so the followers can’t make decisions without going to the Mind Controller.  They are being continually encouraged to not think independently or make their own decisions.  They become dependent on the Mind Controller or his underlings as their parent.  The more dependent they are, the more controlled they are.  It would be a terrible thing to be accused of being “independent.”

For many followers, personal problems are blown way out of proportion to keep the focus on the person being controlled, so they don’t challenge the Mind Controller.  

Mind Controllers exploit the natural tendency people have to obey authority.  They exploit the fear people have of ridicule, rebuke, and losing relationships.  This fear is a very deep subconscious fear that profoundly motivates them to defend  what they are doing, and condemn others that do not obey the leaders.  

Even the thought of people who left the assembly or disobeyed the mind controller, conjures up defenses in the minds of those controlled to discount or think poorly of those who have “gone to Satan” and the evil outside world, outside of their assembly.  Their mind is ensnared and captivated by fear to automatically think evil of anybody who leaves their group.

Getting away with public ridicule, sarcasm, and rebuking automatically lets the Mind Controller gain more control over an audience because the audience fears the same thing happening to them!  Pointing people out publicly creates fear in others to behave so the Mind Controller won’t do this to them, so they want to be nice to the Mind Controller and get on his good side and please their parent.  And they might tell on their friends to gain more favor. 

Private and public slander creates fear in the followers by naturally not wanting the Mind Controller to do this to them.  Creative slander can be used to create bitterness and walls against those who could help the followers.  Slander against the Mind Controller is a very, very bad sin, and divisive.  Slander against followers is not nearly as bad an offense, and even very acceptable if the leader is doing it.  

Using guilt and fear to manipulate and control keeps the followers off balance.  Confession of past wrongs is a powerful device for controlling emotion.  But rarely is the confessed sin forgotten, but brought up later to manipulate.

People are not allowed to talk to each other about anything critical of the leader, doctrine or organization.

Mind Controllers often have a deep inferiority complex.  What they require is attention and power.  They learn to crave it, and develop a need for more and more power.  Some cult leaders are in it for the personal power, not the money.  They operate under the belief that people are too stupid and unspiritual to know what is best for them.  They begin to believe their own propaganda.

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BY: Rhett Stuart
“The Bishop Maker” 


RETRIEVED http://www.wickedshepherds.com/MindControl.html