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  1. 3 points
    Hello. Have a seat. Feel free to look around. If you're new, you'll be shocked at some of the opinions, but there's few opinions universally held here. We disagree with each other about a lot of things, and find the discussions to be healthy. If all you're used to is twi or twi-lite, that may be a whole new experience, or even a shocking experience. Take it at your own pace. BTW, most of us may hold strong opinions- but that doesn't mean our lives revolve around them, or that we're very emotional about them. There are differences.
  2. 2 points
    Hey, annio! It's quite something, isn't it, when the scales start falling from the eyes! You won't untangle everything all at once, so don't beat yourself up about it. You will soon work out what's most important for you to know, to understand, to put right. I'd say (though others here would differ) that the Lord will show you where you need to start. If you are attending a church of any kind, how do the people interact? Does it seem forced, too friendly, not friendly enough; do they seem to care for each other without being intrusive in each other's lives? How do the leaders behave? Quietly, humbly, approachably, listening; or overbearingly / dictatorially / or otherwise a bit uncomfortably? It's okay, you can check out various churches. Or, should the desire take you, check out non-Christian organisations. I try to love God; love my fellow human beings and try to help them; and try not to be too cynical or jaundiced when people say things that seem a bit "off" (you and I probably say/said wacky things too in early recovery mode!)
  3. 2 points
    Without going into too much detail, Satan is the Biblical enemy. And what does he represent? Evil? Lies? Sure. But what else? Questions. What was Eve's first mistake? Questions. Considering a view other than the one dictated to her. Curiosity is the enemy of religion. Resistance is the enemy of nationalism. Defiance is the enemy of the slaveholder. To be clear: I do not worship Satan. He is as imaginary as the God who put the tree of knowledge in the same garden as the man and woman whose consumption of its fruit would lead to eons of unnecessary suffering. Satan is religion's way of telling the skeptical theirs are not questions but unholy influences. I worship neither your imaginary friend nor your imaginary enemy.
  4. 1 point
    So, I’ve lurked here for a long time, and now with my heart pounding, have created an account and am saying hello. I’ve been out of TWI for over 10 years; it took me almost 10 before that to work my way out. I grew up in twi, birth to twenties. Now I’m working my way through diagnoses of PTSD, anxiety, and depression, all after I thought I’d dealt with the big stuff. I hope you all are faring better, but I’m guessing maybe not if you’re here. A book that is really helping me understand all this is “Combatting Cult Mind Control” by Steven Hassan. If you’re looking for a sometimes distressing but very revealing read, it’s excellent and totally relevant. Happy to be here and hope to “meet” some of you soon. :-)
  5. 1 point
    Glad my process and posting affirms the value of GSC and bridge building WordWolf! The issue of kindness is an interesting one... I of course know that especially in sensitive areas kindness is often needed. However, at this season of my life what with the lifetime of trauma I have experienced, and the bondage-breaking/cult recovery I am in the midst of, I am ready for some good old yelling, screaming, and throwing things! JUSTICE NOW AND IN THE FUTURE, YES!! SWORD-WIELDING, HELL YEAH! It is refreshing for me when emotions are allowed and not swept under the rug, although there is always the risk of words being misinterpreted, mis-applied, etc. For me, it is time the pendulum swung out from the secrecy, deceit, and ignorance and into the Light and Truth! Blessings WordWolf!
  6. 1 point
    Yes. My point is that it (for those who may prefer not to anthropomorphize the concept) is imaginary. For the record, I'm not atheistic nor agnostic. But if I was, I'd lean toward agnostic. I prefer Deist. IT is more than religion's way of keeping skeptical influences suppressed (or trying to do so anyway). As Einstein posited, imagination is very powerful... or at least more important than knowledge. What got me thinking about this was the fact that tribal conflict seems to have been around since early humans. Or, at least since history was first recorded, which seems to me to predate the Judeo-Christian tradition. So, being curious, I asked myself... I said, "Self, why is that?" Clearly, I'm not capable of answering that question with any sort of authoritative knowledge. But I can imagine. I can wonder. And I can at least do some rudimentary and superficial research.
  7. 1 point
    Hello, Norbetow. Welcome to the Café. Little bit quiet at the moment, but wait till one or two people come through the door, and start throwing things at each other, LOL. Meantime, have a coffee and a cake.
  8. 1 point
    Those who intentionally hide and dismiss wierwille's plagiarism, research foibles, and sexual predation AND have made it their business to lord over others.........THOSE SPLINTER GROUPS are worse! At the starting gate of splintering from twi, they are hypocrites before God and man.
  9. 1 point
    As cynical as I can be, I would refrain from making such a blanket statement. I think there are some who are sincerely trying to do their best and are not in it for the glory. That's not to say there isn't some ego involved -- a splinter group, by definition, is led by people who think they can do a better job than the group they left. But to declare them unworthy to be ministers... I don't know. It certainly applies to some, but I cannot see where it applies to all. Sincerity may not be a guarantee for truth, but it is a guarantee for sincerity.
  10. 1 point
    It's like herpes. It never really goes away.
  11. 1 point
    Ummm... Pamdalarryum, I was a military wow for two years while an airman (1975-Aug 1977). Stationed at Lajes Field, Azores. Otherwise, more or less unremarkable. I did go to Germany twice to meet with Limb coordinators (Simmons) once in Munster I think it was, and once for an advance where veepee showed up. The most memorable event was going to the sauna in the hotel and one of the young women there was completely naked. Also met a guy (Caucasian) that had spent some time witnessing in Teheran, Iran. He had interesting travel stories. But since it was more than 40 years ago, that's pretty much all the detail I can recall.
  12. 1 point
    Browsing and reading.... I think it has to do with perspective. What's the fundamental place from which I view this or any "technical" question in the Bible and from which I then get my view, my perspective that informs me? Christianity, faith in Christ, life in "the way, the truth and the life" is a rebirth, a new birth, a new beginning for me. So then, a question - if I didn't know anything more about it than that, could I still live it? If all I knew was that I now follow Jesus Christ, and accept my own human condition as one requiring mercy and forgiveness to succeed, that Jesus Christ has acted on my behalf and bridged a gap I would have been unable to, and that the full life possible is to be "born again of God's spirit", or God's "life".....then what? The most basic place to go from there is "living the life". And the question would be is it "on or off", active or passive, in wait mode for a future or in act mode, living now? I think we could agree it's on, it's active, it's a life to be lived. Everything I read in the New Testament encourages me to be patient and steadfast in living this new life now, while knowing death is not the end, that there is a future beyond that, a "hope" and that I must transition to that future. So again and still - what is this new life, this place from which I now live and work? The question of "gifts or manifestations" and related issues answers itself then - we have a new life, in Christ. We are born again of God's spirit, we are God's children, we are new creation in Christ, we have a fresh new set of answers and ideas to bring to our fellow man - Accept God's gift of forgiveness and mercy through Christ. Believe that God showed us the Way through death in Christ's resurrection, believe that God raised Him from the dead and that now we too can be raised into new life believing in that, and that the new life to come is our future. Believe it, say it. Now - forgive as you've been forgiven. Extend mercy as it's been shown to you. Lift others as you have been lifted. Pray to God and seek Him, pray for others and that they will do the same. Act as Jesus did, do as He did, live the new life without owing anyone anything other than to love them. I encourage people to a living faith, an active lifestyle that embraces all the fundamentals, all the time. "All nine all the time" sounds childish, boorish, to me now, like somethng I'd hear in a football game analysis. The whole attitude takes something eternal and incredible and turns it into a list of things-to-do and "believe for", greek words to be twisted and squeezed to gain some deeper understanding of what is already here, now and living in me. One thing I learned in the Way - men will torture the life out of each other and every word in the Bible while condemning each other to hell, to get to some elevated stated of enlightened understanding and ignore mercy, forgiveness, grace. There's that old saying - you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink"......in the Way we saw it as no, you can lead that horse to water and if you hose it down, stand it in 10 feet of water, show it pictures of water all day and say "water water water water water" a million times it will eventually just swallow whatever you're giving it to just get you to stop. It doesn't mean it liked it or won't bolt the minute you're not looking. And that isn't belief or faith or trust. How can God have the heart of a man or woman if they're only trying to please some lesser power or get something of lesser value than to please their Creator? The line of people that want to start some new improved version of Christianity that's better than what's come before is pretty long. The line of those who give a shit about people, care for them and are willing to be as passionate about learning to forgive and love as they are about cutting out their lesser competition is much shorter. “The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy. The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works.” Psalm 145:8,9.
  13. 1 point
    Ok, here goes. I grew up mostly at HQ - not in the frying pan; in the fire. The standards for children there were ridiculous. Basically, be perfect. Listen, remember, obey. Be a good example. Don’t be a stumbling block. Dress appropriately. Speak respectfully. Don’t be angry. Don’t be sad, be thankful. I watched some kids, especially as teenagers, become angry and rebellious. Others, like me, became as compliant and people-pleasing as a person could possibly be. I was complimented often on my “meekness.” In childhood, this meant a rather controlled atmosphere. As a teenager, it was absolutely suffocating. I’m now well into middle age, and I find that I have very little sense of self. The mental work I’m doing now is mostly about separating my “cult self” from my “authentic self” (as Steven Hassan labels it in Combatting Cult Mind Control) - I also think of it as new man vs. old man with the new man being false behaviors smothering my real personality. I’ve always thought I had pretty good self esteem. I realize now I feel fine about my cult self - being disciplined, keeping things clean, being a high achiever, serving others to the detriment of self. I have a deep self-loathing for that hidden authentic self that isn’t “perfect” - is spontaneous, joyful, sexual, angry, free, artistic, childlike, grieving. It’s taken months of counseling, thinking, reading, and agonizing just to realize this. Still working on how to let it out. Another part of growing up that still affects me is hyper-vigilance about “danger.” The idea that the devil was out to get us; and if you are “out of alignment and harmony” you’ll be outside of God’ protection; and we were taught that people we knew had DIED because they didn’t follow their schedules or didn’t follow their leadership’s advice; this adds up to a brain trained to be alert to the smallest inconsistencies in the environment (PTSD). Then put in the strong imagery of Athletes of the Spirit. My friends and I were obsessed with it. We learned the seed of the serpent dance and would argue over who got to be her and which devil spirits we got to be. That imagery was so strong for our young minds. Taking the advanced class made it even more vivid and more urgent. Then, if you were at HQ in the 90s, you remember lunch time. LCM would talk for hours every week sometimes, lecturing about the things God was “showing him” or about how we all needed to be so vigilant or about people - telling their personal lives and struggles to everyone and talking about how the “adversary” had gotten into their lives and how devil spirits were infiltrating their minds. Is it any wonder I was terrified to drink? To try drugs? That has seemed like a good thing to me for a long time, but I now realize I was so constrained by fear that the mere idea of losing control sends me into a near panic. It wasn’t good. And along with all that came the underlying belief that if I wasn’t all those “good” things - a strong disciple, believing positively, behaving according to the Word, doing what my spiritual overseers told me to do, blah blah blah - I wouldn’t be loved. Discipline of children was so strongly emphasized (and LCM criticized parents so heavily) that as a child, I subconsciously picked up that I wasn’t good enough and wasn’t lovable if I wasn’t right in line. Now, as a parent, I really do think at least my mother loved me unconditionally, and she told me that when I left the way. I have a lot of family left in the way. I stay anonymous because of it. Still afraid of losing their love over my “disobedience.” I guess posting here is one way for me to push back and not allow myself to be silenced, even if I’m not fully out there. Baby steps. In a lot of ways I was lucky. I went to college instead of going Wow or Way Disciple right away. I of course wanted to go in the corps - because how else were you really somebody? - but was lucky enough to get through college and realize I didn’t want to do that. I spent my 20s wading through all the doctrines I tried so hard to keep believing in, but I just couldn’t get them to make sense with real life. I rejected them. And didn’t realize the mess all this has made of my psyche. I was a true believer. I did the things you were supposed to do. I toed the line. I put my heart and soul into it. And all I got was this broken spirit.
  14. 1 point
    When I was with wierwille on his motor coach in May 1981, he stopped reading my deprogramming account, paused and directly fixated his gaze upon me, and said............. "Your parents will be dead in 5 years for having done this to you." Imagine how that jolted me. For nearly 17 years, I had been indoctrinated into believing that Dr. Victor Paul Wierwille walked with God and was "the man of God" for this day and time. He received revelation from God.......and, he was the man who could "reach up into Daddy's cookie jar" anytime, anywhere. Throughout the corps indoctrination program, our corps coordinators emphasized and demanded strict adherence and obedience to leadership. Wierwille was the "ultimate leader" of the cult........and, in May 1981, I was in his private motor coach and he was uttering a prophecy of the death of my parents. So.........I counted down the years. Throughout these years, I had NO contact with my parents......except to send them an announcement of my marriage to my bride. I did not invite them to our wedding. I knew that was not within the realm of possibility for them to accept.......and come sit in the BRC at our wedding. So, obviously..........our relationship became estranged, and cold, and distant. Yet, each year......I reflected on wierwille's "prophecy" and thought, ".....Is this going to be the year of their deaths? How will they die? Will it be significant or "biblical in nature".......so that I can see the judgment of the Lord on their actions? And, I at times, pondered..........."What if this was a false prophecy and wierwille was just speaking presumptuously?" God forbid that I harbor a dissenting view of wierwille's prophecy and doubt that it would come to pass. THAT would make wierwille a false prophet. The years passed quickly..........and four years later, in May 1985........wierwille was DEAD. Still, I waited..........waiting for year number 5. May 1986 came and went...........and my parents were STILL alive. Five years had passed and the prophecy did not come to pass. Now what? Should I give "this prophecy" a little wiggle room and wait till the end of the year? Maybe, just maybe.......wierwille was "off by only a little." No. Wierwille said, "Your parents will be dead in 5 years for having done this to you." These words were burned into my conscience, because wierwille had spoken them directly to me. After years of studying scripture and going thru corps training, prophecy was something that was absolute and the markings of the holy spirit in action. Many believed that wierwille had the gift ministries (plural)......teacher, prophet AND apostle. Yet, are we not to take the Deuteronomy record into account that IF the prophet's words do not come to pass, then he has spoken presumptuously.......and be NOT afraid of him. Now what? This was May of 1986. And, three months later, Geer takes the stage at Corps Week and reads "The Passing of a Patriarch." Patriarch? Was wierwille our "Father in the Word?" Was wierwille our father in this cult? And, Geer said that we'd forsaken wierwille and needed to get back to the Word that he had taught us. Questions and more swirling questions. Who you gonna believe? Men who speak great swelling words of vanity or your own eyes (and ears)? As of that May 1981 "prophecy".............my Dad lived another 27 years. As of that May 1981 "prophecy".............my Mom lived another 34 years. .
  15. 1 point
    Just to be clear............in the cult, and especially the corps indoctrination program, the leaders jumped back and forth from the new testament to the old testament..... picking and highlighting whatever verses fit the agenda. So......a prophet speaks FOR THE LORD. And......if the thing follow NOT, he is not to be respected (revered). Quite the opposite. ~~~~~~ Deu 18:18 - I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. Deu 18:19 - And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him. Deu 18:20 - But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. Deu 18:21 - And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? Deu 18:22 - When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him. ~~~~~~~~ Oh, the irony..........that wierwille died in 4 years, dropping dead on his own in the time frame of his false prophecy. .
  16. 1 point
    Sky, glad VPW was wrong, and you got to make up with your parents. You also got to see the clay feet of your tormentor. But he achieved his goal: bound you closer to himself, and there you remained, at least for his lifetime. So much for "builds harmony in the home." Only if your "home" is in a cult!!
  17. 1 point
    Skyrider, that’s weird and creepy of wierwille to do that…I’m glad your parents outlived the supposed prophecy of doom…imagine if you would have countered that with the nifty PFAL-if-you-got-your-ears-clogged-you’ll-be hearing-from-heaven-another-way old switcheroo - - by snapping right back at him “God’s not saying my parents will go but that you will go – you’re my ‘father in the word’, remember?” == == == == yeah I miss my dad too - - and I'm thankful we got to connect after years of my being involved in a cult and even through his PTSD from the war. Happy Father's Day to all !!!
  18. 1 point
    I remember this ROA. It was my 2nd. The first one i had gone out WOW. I had just turned 21. My parents were in res. Both they AND my WOW team leader jumped on me and the other young adults on my team accusing us of being involved in whatever had happened at the gazebo. We were all confused as to what the heck had gone down at the gazebo. And in my young brain, i was a little upset that I hadn't been considered cool enough by those kids to be invited. I think I had a brother who had been there. He told me it was a bunch of clergy kids who had planned that whole thing. A few main memories of that ROA: 1. My WOW family coordinator was DFAC at that rock. She was too soft hearted to stand up to what was required of her. I remember she would try to be authoritative with us, but her heart wasn't in it. I remember seeing her right after she was dropped (I had no idea what had happened) and she was wearing a hand written nametag instead of her WC one. I was always getting in trouble for forgetting my nametag, so I said (joking) "where's your nametag? SOMEONE WILL THINK YOU GOT DROPPED!" Then I found out she had just come from being stripped of her WC status. I wanted to melt into the ground. I still feel bad about that. 2. We had a girl on our WOW team who had been dropped for being a lesbian in the middle of the year. She was a foundational class grad. We were lucky as a team because we only lost her. Other teams had been decimated, having to move in with other teams because there were so few left. 3. On our way back to ROA from where we were on the field (way out in the SW usa) one of our vehicles broke down with a radiator hose that had split. We fixed it with an "All Roads Lead to The Rock" bumper sticker. We felt like we were super conquerors to come up with that solution and arrive in time for the rock. We took the offending hose with its bumper sticker bandaid to present it to the WOW coordinator, thinking it would be a great example of God working in us to find a way to overcome. Revelation or something. I believe the WOW coordinator was J0hn R◇p.o., but I could be mistaken. He and my WOW team coordinator were annoyed we had even considered they would care. We should have believed better and the car wouldn't have broken in the first place. 4. One of my brothers was slated to go out in the next wave of wows. But the program had been cancelled. Our parents were in residence. He couldn't go back with them. He had nothing and nowhere to go. He ended up in something like a way home in Ann Arbor. Whole life disrupted. 5. I was still in debt when I went WOW. But at the time I left I had been informed my student loans didn't count as debt. In the middle of the year that changed. I didn't have them paid off by the time the rock came around. I was sure martindale would know by revelation that i had debt. Or that they would run credit checks on all the wows. Or something. But no one knew. I should have known then that they had no connection to God at all. (Please excuse grammar and spelling... I typed this all on my phone. And it is a pain in the foot.)
  19. 1 point
    Hey annio, Welcome to the 'Spot. I like your post. Sound logic always beats blindly following humans with good intentions. Have a cup o joe.
  20. 1 point
    Oh, I see elsewhere you said 14 years in TWI and 18 years with Geer. That's a lot of baggage. You won't unpack it all at once, but you'll do it much quicker here than on your own. We know what you've been through, and you can "vent" here. It is wonderful to enjoy the peace that passes understanding, and to learn to be quiet with the Lord and just enjoy his company. You don't have to do, you just have to be. The Lord welcomes you with open arms. He promises you freedom. He paid the price for your freedom. Enjoy a walk in the park with him. Or a beer in the pub.
  21. 1 point
    Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Faith in God and Jesus Christ is the Way to go, annio, and your personal realization of that is real and profound. Savor it. Own it! It's yours. Sometimes the work we need to do most is to remove the barriers we and others put up that obscure the path we're to follow, the Way of Jesus Christ our Savior. The good news is that God draws us all to Himself through Christ. The change you seek can only be good. I heard something last week that's stuck with me and I'll share it with you - it was the statement that "to believe in Jesus Christ is to believe that you're forgiven"....that the fundamental foundational thing that God wants us to do is to come to Christ and know that forgiveness, His grace and mercy, that finally we are at peace with Him by doing nothing more than accepting the peace He offers directly to us. I've been thinking about that this week when I pray and it feels...."good". Really good. All the best to you - there's a song by a band named Dawes, titled "A Little Bit of Everything" and the final verse captures another idea I'd share with you and that is to enjoy the life God has given you! Every bit of it, to it's fullest. I believe we witness to God's magnificence as Creator when we make everything we can of the life he's given us. Peace! "All these psychics and these doctorsThey're all right and they're all wrong.It's like trying to make out every wordWhen they should simply hum along.It's not some message written in the darkOr some truth that no one's seenIt's just a little bit of everything." (Taylor Goldsmith)
  22. 1 point
    The Wierwille family ancestry can be traced as far back as the 1300s to a small town in northern France called Vierville-sur-Mer, translated "Wierwille by the Sea." These Viervilles were Huguenots, a group of French Protestants who staunchly resisted Roman Catholic attempts to dominate the religious and social life of France. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, many Huguenots left France to escape religious persecution, the Viervilles among them. [Opening paragraph of Mrs. Wierwille's book, 'Born Again to Serve'] At the bottom of this page, the wierwille genealogy details the ancestry back to great-grandfather Johann Heinrich Wierwille (1792-1889) and his immigrating to the United States in 1839. Blood lines Matter......and mattered immensely to victor paul wierwille. Sitting in those corps nightowls, year after year......many of us heard wierwille lauding his family heritage in swelling words. Sitting on the grass in the campfire area of the way woods, wierwille talked about his parents and siblings, his upbringing, his childhood adventures, his german-pastor dr. kunst and the greater new Knoxville community. And further......corps in-residence twigs were dutifully scheduled to each attend aunt sevilla's "twig" on subsequent Tuesdays so that all corps were "instructed fully on the wierwille heritage." Closing in on 1982 and wierwille's legacy....er, "40-year service to God" highlighted.....the bloodline thread was the strength that bound the fabric together. And, it was THIS bloodline that mattered.....The Victor Paul Wierwille Memorial Museum Everyone else's family line was completely irrelevant. The pathological agenda of this narcissist had come full-focus in 1982. "The job of the Corps was to take care of the Wierwille family." In ways that jolt the human mind back from the unthinkable....."What did this man (and his enablers) really think about the Christ line?" The Martindale era (and bloodline)......is not even a whisper any more. The Geer-man, the sycophant who slaved years at wierwille's side.....detested. The wife and mother of wierwille's five children.....buried in a distant cemetery. Yet, wierwille's elevated shrine is the focal point of The Garden of Living Waters. The Wierwille Heritage No matter how many ways twi spins their website and programs, there is no mistaking the wierwille adulation and symbolism that marks its headquarters. The Wierwille Homestead is the shrine of the wierwille bloodline. The DNA genetics of twi is wierwille. That is "The Code" they're protecting. Without it, everything unravels.
  23. 1 point
  24. 1 point
    Yep.....wierwille's grandson-prophecy of Lu-ke Somerv!ille was a delusional hailmary, but then.....JP' son is "installed as corps director" in a Mississipi-CFFM-outpost and.....Walter Cumm!ns comes in to "lay hands on" and prophesy over this grandson, victor paul wierwille II. Now....there are two "dueling banjos" playing for the wierwille-bloodline-rights. 1) Twi has dismantled lcm's era and raised high the wierwille flag (again). 2) CFFM has two of the wierwille children as support pillars, and wierwille grandson running a corps-esque program in MS to resurrect his grandpappy's vision once more. Of course, none of this is out there in the open....it's subliminal. A wierwille bloodline that dates back to 1300 France and its spiritual reverberations. Add double-agent Doug, and research-rogue Walter....and their stripes in twi-hierarchy and you've got the makings of a secret-spiritual-bloodline-bestseller. lol How many vampires can gorge on the wierwille bloodline?
  25. 1 point
    Ahh, you are right Belle, Bodie G....... He was Mr. Bliss' best friend in the Family Corps. We haven't talked with him in years.............prob since 97. He'd like to know where he's at also.

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