A Trapped Mind

I wanted to share this blog because it is written by someone who clearly knows how alienation and cults are interwoven.  When I first began work as a psychotherapist one of my first clients was escaping a cult. I was interested in how EST, the cult which became The Forum worked and how Scientology managed to influence so many when it demanded such bizarre and dramatic behaviours from people. My interest in cults lead me eventually to working with parental alienation, itself a cult of the family mindset.  I like this blog and think anyone who is interested in the psychology of alienation will too.


Source: A Trapped Mind

7 thoughts on “A Trapped Mind

  1. Very interesting, thank you Karen. I once got involved in a religious sect with a charismatic authoritarian leader, and while I managed to withdraw before it did me much harm, I recognise the techniques described on this blog and their parallels with parental alienation. I’m thinking especially of the use of the ban – the ruthless exclusion from the sect/family circle of anyone who challenges the leader’s authority and worldview, and the subsequent ban on sect/family members having any contact with the banned person, all as tools of coercive control. Before we met, my ex had also been involved in a sect, a very destructive one that mixed elements of Christianity and African traditional beliefs about witchcraft and spirit possession, and I wonder whether this experience in common is part of what drew us together in the first place.

    We do need to be careful, though, about who we label as a sect or cult. Chanting and meditation, which are singled out as cult techniques on that blog post, have perfectly legitimate applications – they are used by plenty of religious traditions that are open and enquiring and not authoritarian and cultish.


    1. yes DHU I agree, working out how perfectly ordinary religious or spiritual practices are woven into cult practice is important so that we do not label all spiritual beliefs as cult behaviour. For me the cult element is the desire to control the mind of the member of the cult. K


    2. Hi, I agree wholeheartedly. We do need to be very careful. After rereading my blog post I did think I need to make it clearer around the issue of meditation and chanting. Of course, these techniques have perfectly legitimate applications.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: