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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/21/2009 in all areas

  1. 7 points
    <takes a seat and pulls out a menu> Hello All- There's quite a bit to unpack from 30 years. Bare with my rambling thoughts as they all get down. A third-generation "legacy", I only knew TWI as truth absolute. A child of the 80's, I remember growing up and having The Way being the only way. I took each class in the entire class series the exact week I was eligible, and repeated every chance I could. I only knew LCM as the fount-head of all things godly, and worshipped with (at) him through the birth of the new class. I soldiered on through his fall and stood behind my identity as a chosen part of the faithful remnant throughout the early 2000's. I pursued a degree and lead fellowships, certain I held forth what I knew to be the epicenter of the spiritual world. Once I got close to graduation, the promise of getting a job became VERY real. In a market the began to shrivel, I went from interview to interview, each time putting in hours of deliberate, thoughtful prayer and reflection, certain that the God I knew dwelt in my fellowships and that I was told would never let any wrong befall would come through in the clutch. Each time, nothing. Each time, disappointment. Each time, words came from those more seasoned as "Renew Your Mind", "It's not the spiritually best for YOU!", "God's got something bigger for YOU!". This was the first time I needed to prove God had my back. Long story short, I cobbled together enough to get by, but nothing close to the Eph 3:20 I was told time and time again. I got married, to an amazing and supportive spouse, who left her church to join up. She realized if she wanted tot be with me, she had to drink the Koolaid, and drink she did. She practically did a keg stand with that Hawaiian punch. Together, we weathered many situations that were far from the rosy scenes painted on STS tapes (or CDs or VHSs). Real life was hard as hell, and the God of the lectern and the magazine was not as quick to come through. There was always an explanation, mind you, but should not have to be this hard. "Maybe we're not studying enough. Maybe and hour daily is just a start.". "Are we giving enough? We're at 20%, but could we do more to prove our commitment to God and not our paycheck". We ABSed our meager earnings, lived in apartments, drove our terrible, leaky, beaten cars, and gladly taught others on how much God loved us and would provide. Any positive event in life was championed as proof of TWI's system. It began to seem like a lens that made all the bad not their fault and any positive thing their cause. Perspective. Fast forward to a fourth generation being born. Numerous requests from insiders to go on Staff and change from within. By this time, my life had changed. The grind of finally getting (and keeping) a real job meant hard work. I began to feel like everything in the ministry was a motion. Same old collaterals. The articles in the magazine were SOOOO predictable, as were the overly scripted services. Title, personal anecdote, verses, three main points, conclusion, blanket "Let's continue to..." statement... repeat. I felt as if I wasn't learning anything. To challenge myself and scratch my own spiritual and intellectual itch, I started my own studies and digging. ANy time I would bring these up, I was chastised for going solo and delving into what was already researched. I should re-search what is already available. By this time, I could hear an introduction and immediately know which verses would come up. One STS, I wrote on my wife's notes five verses. Sure as dang, each one was ticked in the course of that scripted speech teaching. I stopped taking notes. I stopped putting time into my teachings at fellowships. I started coasting. I could see others going through the same motions. I used to talk about all of the interesting connections and parallels the moment a great teaching was done. Now I saw how quickly others began talking about their week, their boring lives, their.... anything but the bible. Truth was, it was the collaterals being taught again and again and again. LCM was disavowed, never to be mentioned. All that was safe was the collaterals. So that's were everything went, and still are. Last flash is to the moment I realized how crumby the long-term TWI plan is for those out in the field. Find a menial job, work hard and don't rock the boat. Try to witness but we only need seats for the class- if it's just a connection, move it along. SELL SELL!!!! Find an apartment, move every few years, drive a 5 year+ model car (and keep that cardboard so you don't mess up the driveway). Long-term planning? You don't need that. God's got you. I woke up one day to realize my parents have no retirement and no equity of ANY kind. I didn't want that. I began looking at houses and tried every way to get one without getting a loan. Couldn't do it, so I tried to ask permission. Another post needs to explain this hot mess, but needless to say it was not on the menu. I forged ahead to the disapproval of many. Kid number two arrives- I stop going to STS. Our last trip, I don't even open my bible. I hear and scrutinize the entire presentation better than I had every encapsulated with my notes. (Oh the notes, but I digress...). On our way home, my wife says "What an electrifying teaching!". I let the air clear for about 5 seconds and say "Was it?". Her face was as white as the audience at any given STS. We then discuss very openly our current role in the ministry and where we saw our spiritual lives. Needless to say, it was the beginning of the end. We limped along for a few more years, mainly because of the sweet people that genuinely did care about others and the large family/friend connections. This is certainly a fact that cannot be overlooked, but we were killed with kindness and not won by spiritual truth. We eventually decide to skip fellowship for any convenient reason, attend other church services on Sunday mornings, and try on many religions/denominations. It came to a road that lead to us moving and telling our new coordinators we were out. I felt it necessary to go out on my terms, not middle-fingers a-blazing, but with a truthful talk. We left about two years ago. There were some rough times, including much anger that has not fully gone away. I still struggle with what could have been or should have been, a fact that I can't completely let go of, but am getting closer. I burned my syllabi and collaterals, but still have their haunting memory (and .pdfs! that's a fun post as well!) in my mind. Religion is no longer something I value, and, current spiritual beliefs aside, I was able to emerge with clear and cogent truths I hold to, truthfulness and integrity being paramount. I have spiritually sherpa'd a few others out of TWI, and gotten immense satisfaction for helping them think and process, not just bad-mouthing their religion. It's rewarding to truly help people, not blanket their needs in retemories or promises of a brighter day that never comes. It's rewarding to see them break the chain of mediocrity and a quiet life of apartments and ABSing to pay for staff cars (another post). I loved helping them and reassuring them the devil will not take them should they decide to take off the name tag. My bourbon is getting low, as is my battery. Time to refill both. I have lots to say, and not sure how much/when to do it. I have many damning things, but not sure how it could help me or others. I don;t want to go back to the post-exit anger and rage that consumed my evenings (too late for that today! Oh well...), but I think a healthy processing and sharing for those who discover this site (like I did) will help clearer thoughts and heads prevail. I know TWI is not the epicenter of the spiritual world. I know TWI is pyramid of those working the ladder upward. I know TWI is a shell built on a few books and lock-step loyalty. I know that 30 years is far too much CollateralDamage.
  2. 7 points
    Don't know if you will remember me....I was on about 13 years ago, then not until now. I started out as chinson ... then married Stevelw! .... and kinda dropped off the map. Update: kids are all grown, still very happily married to Stevelw! , got a masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and am now writing my dissertation for a doctorate in Counseling Psychology. Working as a mental health therapist and loving life! Wanted to get back to "the spot" cuz so much of my life was made better by the loving people on this site and the support, friendship, and occasional kick in the butt... So...Hello Again (music from the Jazz Singer with Neil Diamond swells)
  3. 7 points
    I thank all concerned parties for helping me cope with this kind of situation. I will not take it to heart any longer. I am rubber and they are glue... :) I know my heart and my capacity to love and I won't let my joy and peace be eclipsed by their immature and vindictive nature. I wish no evil will and in time they may sense my patience and compassion. Yes, I sometimes (maybe often) speak openly against the Bible but I do it with a desire to know the truth and not just believe it because someone else says so. I have no fear in putting God to the test... I am tired of the divisive nature of many of the scriptures (three religions killing each other for many centuries) and these people just prove my point about the dangers of how the orthodoxy has radicalized their minds. I am moving on and I will, take it as a compliment. THANKS! Yes, I'm making lemon-aid, extra sweet and the cherry pits I will plant in my backyard and try and grow a tree. Much Love DWW
  4. 6 points
    What a total load of bullocks. How much more inventive can TWI be, in belittling people? Most everyone you meet has a debt - a mortgage - that they are working to pay off. It's cheaper than renting, often. (Even though my mortgage is quite a lot of money, it would be nearly twice as much to rent a similar place - and I couldn't rent anywhere remotely habitable for what I pay in mortgage... a grotty bedsit, maybe?) (Actually, I couldn't even afford to rent a place!!) Debt has risks, true, but there are risks in not having debts. Much better to help people think about their money in a proper manner, learn to budget properly, and work out the best way to borrow if there is really no other way. My church hosts a Christians Against Poverty debt centre to help people in debt. Helps them manage finances, gives them a compassionate hand up when they're crushed by debt, sets up debt plans and even bankruptcy (so as to give a fresh start). Isn't that a better way to encourage people with debt - rather than beat them over the head with Bible verses? And the gentle compassionate approach - guess what! - leads some people to choose to become very thankful Christians.
  5. 6 points
    In regards to the recent trend of "is twi worth our efforts anymore"...my opinion is that if twi is faltering and shrinking for "various" reasons...it's not the time to let up on them...now is the time to put the boots to them and finish them off...after that, we can go after the splinter groups like nazi war criminals... This entire Wierwillian philosophy of "power of the mind" should probably be labeled as witchcraft...his disciples continue on like mold growing in a dark damp place. I am repulsed by what they do to people. They rape the mind and ravage the soul. ...Because of what they have done...I will continue to do the Mexican hat dance on their faces.... Any thoughts?
  6. 6 points
    I first posted at Trancechat and then Waydale...and now GreaseSpot...whether it's still relevant or not to post about twi depends on your personal perspective. As long as people make bad decisions there will be organizations like twi. It seems that some folks are masochistic enough to continue with their various splinter groups and re-invented cult nonsense...the nefarious nature of this beast is control and abuse...and it seems that there will always be people who enjoy this particular form of self mutilation. Me?...I still post about twi and their gawd awful "tadpole cults" that have spawned in various places...because they stole 13 years of my life and I'm not done speaking my mind about them...probably never will be either. They lie in God's name and steal the innocence of unsuspecting youths. They take your money and bleed your soul. They are parasites that suck people dry and discard them...they are lowlifes of the worst kind. old news?...no more than the third reich is old news. I see that the Germans are putting a near 90 year old man (who's dying) on trial for war crimes that happened nearly 70 years ago...As a wise man told me recently... the bottom line is about revenge...is this any different?
  7. 6 points
    Thinking about this stuff for a few days now...Sowers?.... Let me see if I got this straight...The grandson of the grand pubah (who just happens to have the same name) starts a "thing" that closely resembles the waycorps training, even borrowing their main objectives...word for word. From all accounts, their doctrine is aligned closely to what Vic taught... ...and now this guy shows up proclaiming himself a sowers grad...and wanting to be pals with everyone. As far as I'm concerned, he can kiss my foot. plain and simple...if you follow the doctrines of victor small wierwille, you are a loser...been there done that. What these people believe is flat out wrong and destructive to people. As far as it goes, they can spread their poison elsewhere. I have no toleration for these sons of britches...none at all.
  8. 5 points
    The announcement that you, Jean-Yves, will be twi's next president has reached GreaseSpot Café. Knowing you from those early days in Quebec City, and your WOW year in Toronto.......I am not surprised that you rose up thru the ranks of leadership. Clearly, in your former years, you had discipline, drive and heart-felt compassion for others. When you were assigned to one of Toronto's WOW teams, I personally made sure that Rene and Sonia [ if I remember her name correctly] were in your WOW-family.....Rene needed extra attention being wheel-chair bound, and Sonia was so innocent, lovely and beautiful that I knew you'd be the right person to help them. And, after your in-residence year......I was honored to perform your and Michele's wedding in 1988. As twi continued to endure Chris Geer's call to "return back to the wierwille-indoctrination doctrine" with his arrogance assertions......twi went thru turbulent times, for sure. Martindale, Don and Howard were thrown back on their heels and were reeling in a defensive posture for a number of years. During this time, you and Michele were staffers at headquarters and saw much of the destruction of people's lives. Yes, for 28 years......you have been intricately ensconced at the upper-tier levels of twi-hierarchy and groomed by "leadership" at hq and therefore, removed from understanding the emotional, physical and spiritual abuse that has been thrust upon the followers. I am saddened, Jean-Yves, to see that you never connected the dots of this abuse and evil. The scriptures give us wholesale examples of how the Pharisees burdened the people with guilt, shame, and fear to maintain their positions of power. You see, Jean-Yves.......there are reasons why some 480 clergy and 3,000 corps grads no longer follow the doctrine or tenets of wierwillism. The mog-doctrine was a fraud perpetrated by wierwille to enrich his power base and control over the youth. Even back then, the older folk were abandoning him left and right......as even wierwille had noted that time and time again. And, when wierwille schemed to offer the sunset corps an "opportunity" to build a cabin at their expense at Camp Gunnison [that twi would later inherit upon that person's death]......NOT ONE ELDERLY CORPS PERSON bought into it. Notice how the elder corps were skeptical and suspicious of wierwille's shenanigans.....even though they were "corps trained?" Clearly, the days of Rosalie's tenure as president has been little more than manage the perceptions......after all, twi really doesn't have a research department any more, do they? And, the teachings are bland regurgitations that were scoffed at even by wierwille's pfal class renderings of religious veneer. Why would a "spirit-filled believer with all power" NEED to read his/her sermon? And then, is there really any full-sharing fellowship going on......or are people just going thru the motions? I think, if you were really honest......you know the answer. So....its not really a "Research, Teaching and Fellowship Ministry" is it? Perhaps, you will slip into the big chair and be able to make BIG CHANGES during your tenure......to elevate Jesus Christ in his rightful and honored place as lord, savior, and mediator between God and man. Perhaps......you will turn the ship 180 degrees and get back to true Christian values where believers are guided by holy spirit within. Perhaps.....you will be able to clean the ranks of arrogant and abusive leaders that have sat in their seats of power at headquarters for 30+ years. But if you are going to make any difference whatsoever......you will have to keep Rosalie and Donna from whispering in your ear on a weekly basis. All the best to you, Jean-Yves. Just know that "the power of that office" is not of any significance in the sight of God......UNLESS you use it for good, to unburden and heal the brokenhearted and those [still] in captivity. [Luke 4:18] .
  9. 5 points
    Good morning. Thought I'd share a bit from my recent website post, "Good People I Met At The Way" "Greetings, subscribers and other readers who stumble across this website. By now, you have probably noticed I have a book in the making. It’s my very personal story of seventeen years in The Way International, a biblical research, teaching, and fellowship ministry that became one of the largest fundamentalist cults in America in its heyday of the 80s. I met many good people at The Way and you’ll meet some of them in my book soon. ... I’ve written many posts about cults and fundamentalism. Today, I just want to make some points clear for those of you who have never come in contact with any Way people before. ... Most Way folks had good intentions about helping people, many desired to serve God in every way, and others sought a godly cause to live for. However, I now consider even the most sincere of Way followers (then and now) as misguided, deceived, and in some cases … gulp … brainwashed. Myself included. Thankfully, with help from many folks, I’ve learned to sort the good from the bad over the years, and am still doing it. My book, Undertow, tells a lot of my story. But the sorting and learning will never be over, even after Undertow is published, which will be soon after the elections next week. In my book, Undertow, you will meet many good people I knew at The Way. Some who have left are still my friends. Some share stories and information at GreaseSpot Café, an online community founded by Michael Duffy that has helped many people recover. * Read the entire text of the post here: The Good People I Met At The Way I think all of us here at GSC owe Michael Duffy a debt of gratitude for his steadfast courage in making this site available so people can access stories and information about The Way that is not available anywhere else. In a democracy, people deserve to have facts from as many sides of an issue, cults included, as they can find before making any decisions about how to proceed in their lives. Cheers to Michael and all of you grease spotters for taking a stand against the propaganda of The Way and mustering the courage to speak out! You inspire me!
  10. 5 points
    First I'd like to thank Pawtucket and team for giving me the opportunity to share my story thank you and cheers Background Greetings all I'm a former member of twi New Zealand from the age of 4 to my exit at the age of 26.My accounts and events are from the years of 1992 to 2014.Currently living in Australia while my mother who is still an innie in NZ. My story Where it all begun was in 1992 I was 5years old and my mother had just been witnessed to by a team of two who were doing door to door.At the time twig as it was known then was 2mins up the road and I attended children's fellowship.Times were tough for me and my mother as her and my father were fighting as to why she all of sudden wanted to join this 'church' Long story short not long after my mother had taken PFAL my father and mother split and I was to stay with my mother and twi Being an only child I was around twi children who I grew up and lived with as i progressed through the years.During the years I grew up idolising Martindale and Mice@l Adams Nz country coord to this day.I cringe at this thought now im more focused on wanting ti br a better me.I had plans to enter Way Corp, go way disciple heck I wanted to take twi all over Nz! During the 90's I was able to witness alot of the purging that was going on I would see alot of people come and go and the part I would get confused at the time was the labels these people would get like 'he's possessed' she was not abundantly sharing enough she believed in the trinity this whole time blah blah.Sad part about it was I thought that I believed such lies about people who I once called uncle or aunt were now being marked and avoid at the time.Allan who I believe posts here on GSC is probably NZ twi enemy number one!he made such headway that leadership view him as a big threat know we we see why?! Allan kudos to you I stand with you brother The new millenium brought a new change for me I was just starting high school and I knew I was starting to change personally.My friends would want to hang out with me but at times I would say sorry we were running a class in our home.Me and mother were actually staying with a gung ho couple who were sold out to twi we ran up 7 classes in 1 year went witnessing almost every week.Almost on a daily basis I was reproved or should I say reamed for small issues backed up spirtually of course!As a 15 year old I was being torn down by these branch coord who were loving sweet dovey dove publicly around other 'believers' but tyrants in private.After 4 long years living with this family me and mother decided to live apart and move into our own house.We had lived with 6 families in a span of 12 years talk about being unsettled at different schools all for the sake of moving the word in that area 'oh you should move near leadership' or that area is not 'spiritually clean' As 2006 approached I was headed for the advanced class all the way in USA Ohio.In my mind at the time I thought I was headed for the land that flowed with milk and honey! I was to find not soo true according to what I have seen and heard here.As a young 18 year old it was my first time out of NZ and I was very excited to see Hq.I came back pumped up and ready to take twi in NZ to the next level A couple of years later in 2008 me and a friend did the Advanced class special 2008, boy If leadership only knew what we got up to before we wouldve been reproved big time haha.During special I also fell asleep during one of Rosalies welcome speech!JYDL had shown disapproval at next morning breakfast. The guy next to me was not impressed or room coordinator getting tired of waking us up in Founders hall poor guy! what can you do I was still adjusting to different time zones As the years progressed I moved out of home and got into the real world.I still attended fellowship saw the same people, sang same songs, gave the same message in SIT and prophecy and yes it's true all the teachings are from the collaterals.Rinse,wash and repeat.As 2011 approached I was having alot of doubts and started to wonder if my heart was in it.My teachings were often corrected right after fellowship was told your messages are the same in SIT your abs is short as they record what you give or it is given as a donation don't you want protection in your life?!The list goes on.. I found myself living in Trumans world After venturing out on my own in 2012 I really got a taste of freedom in California but not before being told this person has fellowship etc.. you should go where the 'believers' are why don't you go to HQ?Deep down I said stuff that! I want to go see some chicky babes surf sand and sun it's California baby! I met a girl and really had a great time with her and pour ed my heart she had actually shared how her mother was part of the cult children of God and how she had split from it and how her life had changed for the better.I knew I wanted that freedom too.It wasnt until 2 years later till that day finally came. .. It dawned on me that I wasn't getting any younger I was 25 and I said to myself can I continue doing something my heart wasn't into?can I still put 30 min of teachings together when I don't even believe what I'm saying!Do I want to be continually checked or am I spiritually fit as to why I wasn't at fellowship when I called/text to say I wasn't coming? did I have to scrape my last monies just so I could reach the ABS amount without being screened or questioned.Many more...these thoughts battled me until December 2013 when I decided I wanted to be free I remember waiting anxiously shaking like I was about to be executed waiting to tell my mother I wanted to leave the ministry.I remember her saying you know what the Devil is going to take you down!She was bawling her eyes out and yelling (twi programs and indoctrinates this kind of thinking) and I thought she was right as this was all I had known since a 5 year old.My mother had made the phone call on my behalf to Mice@l and he said I have the 'spirit of leviathan' and that I should go over dta syllabus and offered to pay 'a visit' in case any of you don't know dta is defearing the adversary class.I knew amongst all the fear,anxiety and stress I was not to going to participate I was sticking to my guns!After a couple of days I was in shock of what I had done.I truly believed at the time I was going to be killed because I had walked out of the 'household' It took me about a year a trip to Thailand and being out in the real world to realise hey I'm not that 'possessed or out to lunch as I have been labeled.Realising now that I was only programmed brainwashed to believe that the way was the only true place to be My biggest regret was not saying goodbye properly to all those friends and families I grew up with.There are some great people in the NZ twi.Know I did what was best for me and I can honestly say the grass is greener on the other side! !! I could share more on NZ side of things if any one would like to know more or you could private msg it is totally up to you! Oh btw the coffee in this cafe is awesome! Cheers from Straya D
  11. 5 points
    As someone who's still a Christian, I found nothing in your posts to draw my interest-which is why I found nothing worth commenting on. What I found was some link-dumping (just a link with no real commentary), and some cheerful blurbing (boy howdy, this is some great stuff!) Since this is a DISCUSSION forum, I expect to actually DISCUSS things. People who show up with just links usually are members of an ex-twi group who are posting links to their ex-twi group....and sometimes they pretend they're not a member of the group. (On an unrelated Christian board, I once ran into a drive-by post by Jeff of CES who said, in effect, "Gee, I found this website with some unusual stuff on it. What do you guys think?" with a link to his own content from the CES website. I responded immediately and called him on it. He never replied. Either it was a true drive-by and he never visited again, or he cut his losses when he realized he was caught. So, your posts. They were vague comments about someone's content on YouTube. They didn't even have the direct links to the content. So, I would have had to look them up to find out about what you WEREN'T saying about it. On message-boards, playing coy (being vague and indirect) usually backfires in either the short or long-term. I don't know WHY you posted that way. I just know that it's a formula for keeping me DISinterested.
  12. 5 points
    If there were no GS then there would be one less resource for people to recover from the negative impact of the Way International. One of my relatives has a rare disease, OT - tremors. There are only a handful of people diagnosed with this disease across the world. She had great deliverance over the course of the last couple years when these folks got together and shared their stories, they even had a retreat. Hearing similar stories helped her to adjust to her disease, feel not alone, and since the two meetings she talks about them a great deal. Just seeing another human adjust to the condition and live a 'normal' life helped her so much. Like her, we who have experienced TWI also have a rare disease. I will be the first to admit I am damaged from it. The experiences there have affected aspects of my entire life into today. There aren't many people in public that can relate to me regarding this experience. it affects a lot in my life. I could ignore, that, suppress that, or admit it and heal and adjust. But admit it or not, my 'normal' life is a lot like my relative trying to adjust. To me the real heroes of The Way International experience are not the ones in lofty places, with condescending attitudes, being installed with pomp and ceremony into the highest offices of the organization that is growing less relevant every year. Not those who bury their heads in the sand, "thinking no evil" like the 3 monkey statue shows. Not those who use others to advance themselves. Not the enablers. No, the real heroes of The Way International are found on these pages. Those who tell the truth. Those who expose the lies, the control, the manipulation. Those who share real life drama about escape and adjustment. Those who say what everyone is thinking in the audience but are afraid to express to anyone - yes the STS sucks. Like every Way production. Boring, read teachings, whitewashed messages, all lies. The truth is what happens behind closed doors, where they are meeting out of fear. If you want to see a real hero from the Way experience, go look in the mirror. It's you. You survived. You told the truth. You, my friends on Greasespot, are the true heroes, not the moral midget being installed as President or any of his Pharisee buddies. Or any of the various hucksters selling versions of lies for their own profit. You are the true heroes. Even if you're damaged like me.
  13. 5 points
    I found - abject misery. I was committed to TWI, they weren't committed to me, and threw me out with max ignominy and slander. Lost everything - everything that I hadn't given up previously, to follow the dictates of TWI. What did I find? After 10 years, I found GreaseSpot Cafe. And then - I found out about the lies, deception, ill-treatment, and that the way I'd been treated was nothing to do with me or anything I'd done - it was merely the modus operandi of TWI. And then what did I find? I found healing, peace of mind. Joy in life. Hard times, but I could thrive in them. Great friends, some of whom had "been there" all the time for me. Restored relationships. People who were kind and gentle, and truly loving. Freedom to love and serve. No condemnation. Daily, I find something of the years that the locust had destroyed, being restored to me.
  14. 5 points
    The Pregnancy Policy What kind of board of directors legislates pregnancy policy to their employees? Forget diving into all the details......what gives them the right to insert when a couple should or shouldn't get pregnant and have children? Craig, Don and Howard all signed off on this? Doesn't this policy obliterate all kinds of issues about a woman's right over her body and conception? What about legalities? Is this even legal? [And please......don't start a legal-issues argument on this thread. Thanks.] Did this kind of thinking and policy connect all the way back to victor paul wierwille? Yep. It. Was. A. Cult. The Pet Policy On this one, the first sentence, the foundational directive..........Effective March 25, 1998, larger pets ("serious pets") such as cats, dogs, horses, reptiles and some birds will not be allowed by full-time Staff. Of course, when my wife and I read this, "Who has horses or reptiles or birds?".........but I digress.... The bigger issue, the MAIN POINT is......What gives the trustees the right to give these orders that affect our lives? Did every financial issue connect back to the needs-basis doctrine of wierwille......or what was it? NOW, it was personal. We had a dog, a rescue dog....a poodle mix. Our older son had turned 12 years old and summer was near. My wife was deeply involved in this and knew, with that deep-instinct of a mother's love, that our son needed the companionship of a young dog. Not a puppy with all its early needs, but a one-year old rescue dog from the shelter. A very dear and long-standing family corps woman, Jean G!les T0mko (mother of Paul G!les...corps grad) was like "the grandmother" that our boys never had encouraged it as well. [Note: My deprogramming episode was STILL rippling out its effects.....our two boys never really had that son/grandparent relationship.] Jean and her husband (a wonderful military veteran) through the years offered to babysit our boys several overnight weekends (Sat/Sun).....it blessed them immensely and my wife and I felt is was deeply healthy for the boys. Anyways......nine months prior to this "pet policy" my wife, son and Jean had gone to the rescue shelter and brought this dog home. Jean insisted on buying several dog items, because her heart was invested into our growing boys. She was, again, "Grandma" to our sons. When this policy went into effect, we had to get rid of this dog. My little twelve-year old son's heart was crushed and he sobbed for days while we looked to find a new home for his "little companion." Jean, too, was deeply saddened by this whole ordeal. The rippling effects of this pet policy on my family brought a deep, profound sadness to my heart.....opening the passageway to the haunting memories of my captivity, and my mom and dad. My son who had this growing desire to be a veterinarian.......floundered in this emotional turbulence of losing his little dog, Sandi. **Fast forward to leaving this cult........ into the years ahead, and now 19 years later: Our son graduated from college summa cum laude Received the chancellor award in medical school Selected as one of eighteen in nation for one year, intern yr, at sloan kettering (manhattan) Received intern of year award of those 18 Today.....a brain/spinal oncologist in top-tier cancer hospital So, readers......please indulge me as I pause..................to give a one-finger salute to the cult puppeteers, past and present.
  15. 5 points
    Skyrider Thank you very much for sharing these hardhitting personal life stories. Im ready to give my background in the next couple of days in the new member area Oh and btw Happy new year 2017 to all GSC posters
  16. 5 points
    Nope. Not an effort to be PC on my part. Anyone who knows me in real life knows I don't give a rat's azz about being PC.(Nor did I reference any connection to genetics.) Through the years I have had many friends and coworkers that are either homosexual or transgender. I can assure you they did not all live the same "lifestyle". Ask yourself the question, "What is the heterosexual lifestyle?" There is no answer. Some live a sports centered lifestyle. Some live a music centered lifestyle. Some live a technology centered lifestyle and on and on and on. If someone is heterosexual, it simply means that their sexual attraction is directed at the opposite sex. If they are homosexual, their sexual attraction is directed toward the same sex. People aren't cured of their attraction. They just learn how to repress and deny it. (Think celibacy.) Don't even throw the old devil possession schtick in the mix. We'll be here forever with that one.
  17. 5 points
    Defining Moments in Time: I grew up on a wheat farm six miles from a small, rural town. Our farm house was small and my three brothers and I slept in the basement with concrete floors.......and the winters were bitterly cold. But life was good. My kindergarten class was in a country schoolhouse four miles northeast and grades k-8 numbered around 32 students. Yes, a country school house......and I chuckle to myself, "How old ARE you?" And, no......I didn't walk to school, barefoot. (haha) I still have a framed picture of those 32 students, with my three older brothers, from that little country schoolhouse. The next year my parents made the decision that we would start going to the public school in town, because the school bus drove right by our house each morning and studies, along with team sports, would help expand our growth. Besides the wheat farming, we had corn and alfalfa to irrigate. I was nine years old when my dad thought I was ready to drive the tractor in the field, alone. The fact of the matter was largely due to size not age; when one foot could reach the clutch and the other foot the brake, I was "ready." But hey, I didn't mind.....it made me feel needed and raised my status with my older brothers. The irrigation of the corn and alfalfa took on whole different aspects to manage. For a number of years, we had some cattle and hundreds of sheep. I learned a lot about sheep that embedded deep impressions when, years later, I delved into the scriptures. Life on the farm was a load of challenges and plenty of hard work, but it opened up whole chapters of fond memories of wholesome living. Along with school activities and team sports (football, basketball, golf and track), we were involved in 4-H and I snagged several blue/purple ribbons for my black angus heifers. As farm kids go, we had our share of B-B guns and birdshot to ward off pesky sparrows and vermin attempting to nestle into many of the outbuildings. The first weekend of November each year marked the opening season for pheasant hunting......and, for years, we had relatives who came from out-of-state to join us. Later in life, my dad and one brother spent ten years of time, effort and investment raising 1,000 pheasant and 1,000 quail chicks, each year, [and 80 acres to habitat preservation] and turned them loose in the county....all on his own dime, anonymously. Growing up, we lived 22 miles from the largest lake in the state......so there was water skiing and fishing to be had. Of course, farm work was definitely six days a week, so this wasn't like weekend after weekend. There was work to be done......and my dad started his day, every day, at 4:30am. He did not look favorably on us boys if we were still in bed after 6am......"sleeping in" [anything after 6am] was cause for a stern look. Thinking back on those memories, I recall that phrase....."Tough times make for tough men." I suppose there is some truth to it. With all our diligence and hard work, more prosperity followed......and years later, when all three brothers were off to college and beyond, I traded in my 350 Honda motorcycle for a new 900 Kawasaki [4 carburetors, 112mph in 1/4 mile]. Fast times.....and lots of high school dating. My senior year, our football team was #1 in the state in class C division football. An undefeated season. I played starting halfback on offense and defense. Life was good and fun and memorable. In the spring, I decided to go out for track....even though I'd been on the traveling golf squad my junior year. My track coach was thrilled, my golf coach shrugged. Amongst several events.....100 low-hurdles, 220 yd dash, long jump.....I found a place in the mile relay [each of the 4 guys runs a lap, 440 yards]. We broke the school record three times.....and came in 2nd in the state finals [a school record that held for 28 years]. The following year, I headed off to college......to major in business administration. I really enjoyed the marketing classes my second year, but also had this growing interest for spiritual/biblical truths.......and then, months later, a guy with a nametag who told me he was a "wow-ambassador." Two months later I took pfal.......and repeated pfal class twice more. After the spring semester ended, I dropped out of college........to go WOW. In many way, my recruitment was similar to Charlene's account in Undertow.......change the names, locations, dates......but the recruitment tactics and deceptive marketing of pfal/twi was the same. I was led to believe in "biblical research" and that by God's grace, I could walk circumspectly with that Christ-within spirit. So much of twi's ploy has a basis of truth.......but the "bait and switch" is hidden from view. Systematic and subtle indoctrination. I, too, could write a book......but it would have much of the same content, same guilt/shame/fear cult tactics, warnings from family/friends, conscious and subconscious red-flag warnings, and escaping from deceptive cult. One of the things that I've always contemplated is.......leaving twi is like jumping off a moving train. You know, at some point, that you don't want to go to that destination [an idolatrous end]. You want off.....but you also have a wife and kids in tow. Yeah, I'm ready......are you? Uh oh, the wife is not sure......now what? You can't voice your plans to jump, because others on the train will tell their supervisors....and confrontation will mount from all sides. All those inter-personal relationships.....your "friends" and co-workers, your wife's, your children (activities/friends/school)........when do you jump? Where is there a "soft landing?" Who will be hurt? How will life change? Maybe, I'll write a book entitled, "Just Jump"
  18. 5 points
    I've consulted with the mods (no I haven't). Well, with all the mods who check in regularly (which means me and pretty much no one else). The ban stays. No politics.
  19. 5 points
    My point is that the ripples of The Way's extremism are far reaching--through generations, not just those that got involved back in the 60's, 70's and 80's. How terrible to feel as though the community that shaped you would want you to be dead.
  20. 5 points
    I was talking to Rumrunner one night and mentioned to him that we could easily start our own splinter group and start raking in the bucks...we both laughed and we both knew that it was true...any former member,( especially with corps experience) could put together a package and market it...start a website, put together some tapes and get your tax exempt, corporate splinter group on the road and moving... Call it..."The love of Christ truth ministries international"...sounds good...hmmmm, maybe a theological degree from some mail order outfit would help... ...of course we were joking over a few beers... ...makes me wonder about these guys who actually did it...and how they sleep at night.
  21. 5 points
  22. 5 points
    All, If you saw the thread started by a new grad of the SOWERS program, there seemed to be a swarm to fresh meat. It kind of made me feel like an old grad at twig when (miraculously) a new person showed up. 13 pages (and counting) of posts but only a few from the guy who started it. He seemed to drop off fast and we just kept it among ourselves. Have we talked TWI to death yet? Or is there still more or new things to cover? As an irregular poster, others here may be better able to answer. JT
  23. 5 points
    Well I wont check any questions that have to do with open or transparent, honest, truthful or forthcoming--Those can immediately be checked right off the list I will however give them an "A" for hiding well under the bushes, as well as fearfulness. I'll give them great marks for those, although those arent personally my top priorities of things to look for in a religious group. ....St. Vic Jr. come on over---Where are you? Show us what you've got--we are all interested in what you have to say- Stand and be counted Dude
  24. 5 points
    and whoever anonymous member marked down the last post.. lets look at a few facts and reality here.. the numbnuts down south failed to "get a life".. perhaps one or more did..but what happened? Now their little camping "adventure" is cloaked in darkness.. why? It wouldn't survive the light of day.. feel free to disagree all you want..
  25. 5 points
    Wow I'm heavily struck, here, with how unpredictable can be the human condition and the oft strong desire to be right, to be sure to get the last word in, to be sure to one-up another. Not exactly the vision Pawtucket had, I'm sure, when he said something like "lets tell the other side of the story and maybe have some fun doing it". If someone pi$ses me off and I just can't stand it, I fail to see the good in not standing it so publically; I guess I'll never understand that and I'm glad I don't get it. Caleb, in his youthful "I was just kidding" approach and tone after his original approach of "I'll show up on your stoop"..........I think that those of us that have children that are older than 22 might understand that silliness quicker and yes, he did deserve to have explained to him the better way to frame things here. But my question, then, is whether or not like bahavior isn't happening amongst those that were comfy to tell him straighten up and fly right. The bully on the playground that barges into the new playground, making comments that he later states were "just kidding" then gets to sit back and watch as those he is presumed to have bullied go at each other. I think we too often have no idea of another's intentions, and of course we lack eye contact and body language and general knowledge of someone that is merely known to us on a computer screen. Then I've known of two or more people getting together on the phone or an IM and prod each other against another. "you post this and I'll follow with this" and so it goes. For what? To show someone how tough we are, how much more we know than them, we're big, they're small and by God we are going to make sure they remember it? Sad and our new friend Caleb, bless his heart and pass the peas, sees only the bickering and spitting and why the hell wouldn't he feel comfortable to come back with more of his own goodies. I don't know the man called Caleb but I do understand young people that age and I do understand having connections to people of note and just those two combined make for a powerful mix of "pffffttttt" Is that his intent? I'm not sure I care, but as is the original idea of the forum, too, he has the right to express it and yes, the responsibility to accept the consequences of a strong group of people. I looked at his posts through the lens of a mama and more fun, the mama of a 20 something kid that is forever making statements that she might have to swallow whole in a short time, sometimes all the time. She'll get it and so will Caleb, I pray. I know I did when as I matured and understood and got off my '10 foot tall and bulletproof' ladder. But to go at each other in such a public manner...........nah. Sad. Caleb, say what you need to say, just do heed alot of the posters sage wisdom of caution, whatever that is for you.