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Everything posted by lindyhopper

  1. I’m fairly certain LCM got this original sin theory from the Jewish myth of Lilith. She was supposedly made from the same dirt as Adam, but he or God (idk) kicked her out of the garden because she would not submit to Adam. If I remember correctly she is referenced in other ways as well, including being sexually wanton. Also, if I remember correctly Lilith in Hebrew meant something like a creature of the night or even a monster of sorts. I don’t know if there were specific people he ripped off for the specifics of what knowledge means and linking in knowing in the biblical sense but once on that tract I don’t think it would be too hard to twist it to fit. My theory on how LCM came across it is that there was a Metallica video in the early 90s that depicted Lilith in the garden with Eve and it may have depicted the two of them together, I don’t remember but I do remember being in the Advanced Class in the early 90s and LCM teaching this and then showing that video. He spun it as, see this validates my teaching. The devil is getting bold now that I’m teaching it. I think it was the other way around he got it from the video and then looked into it. I also remember him kind of liking Metallica but I may be wrong on that one.
  2. At first, I was thinking you were quoting an actual letter from TWI. Great poster though. Naive art for naive followers. #™
  3. Hey gang! It has been forever since I've stopped in here. (Only here after discovering LCM had a Twitter page!). Was I not paying attention or has this been a fairly recent evolution for you, Raf? It was essentially the outsider test that brought me to drop religion, and it began with trying to figure out how exactly I was supposed to convert people to the TWI if they didn't already have the basic Christian beliefs. It seems that most people that make that conversion make it after some kind of perceived miraculous event... which is still pretty rare. This is some great stuff here, Raf! I'll have to poke around a little more :)
  4. Agreed, OS. I can't think of another group one would belong to where the normal response to leaving would simply to wish one well. I guess I'm too far removed from absolutist authoritarian group think. I guess this post was also largely about explaining it to others like close friends and family. Regardless, for me, this was the best way to go.
  5. I guess occasionally something still comes up in life and I feel like coming back here and getting it off my chest... There has been discussion over the years here about how one has left or was kicked out etc and whether standing up to the perceived wrongs of the Way was better or more noble or whatever than just leaving without a fight. I was one that left without explanation, without a philosophical show down, or a heart to heart with those closest to me. There are times that I have felt bad for doing this to family and friends and fleeting moments that I have felt ashamed while feeling cowardly, but those times have passed and I have no regrets, no shame, and would do it the same way given the unimaginable opportunity to do it over again. Recently I was talking with someone about a close family friend who is in The Way, who's wife had up and left with their child one day while he was at work. If it wasn't about leaving the Way then there was certainly something else going on very wrong in that marriage. That got me thinking about when I left the Way. Leaving without an explanation or discussion in any situation or any relationship should raise the eyebrows of anyone thinking correctly. Rarely is a move like that a case where you look at the person leaving and ask yourself, "what the hell is wrong with them?" It should always make you wonder about the situation or the relationship they were leaving. In the Way, there was a variation of this that followers would often take. They would start with the well known fact that being in the Way was "challenging", but would then assume or were told the person leaving either couldn't take the heat, was resistant to change, needed time to "work on some things," or was outright rebellious. Of course, there were the subcategories or being weak, gay, or possessed. In spite of the many people that would leave quietly and without notice, most in the Way would never think of it as a screwed up situation that this person needed escape from. Of course not. In the mid 90's the girl I was dating, who was in the midst of the first few sessions of the foundational class, left me and the Way at the same time without warning or explanation. I came home one day, my roommate had let her in earlier in the day, and found all her Way materials left on my bed. She would not respond to my calls or agree to discuss it when I saw her (we lived in the same building and worked at the same place.) That was rough. A very tough emotional time for me and had me questioning many things about the Way and it's teachings. It was probably the best thing that could have happened to me. It took many more years but those questions, which no one could sufficiently answer for me, eventually led me to the point where I too was ready to leave TWI. "Believers" would probably say that her actions planted seeds of doubt in my mind that I let take root. Whatever. Her actions were out of self preservation and my reaction was a natural response yielding reasonable questions which "the greatest church since the first century" could not answer. So when I decided to leave, as I wrote in my first post here, I determined to leave quietly... to fade away after I went back to school and move out of the apartment I was sharing with my fellowship coordinator, and leave the job I had with another fellowship coordinator. My plan was sped up due to my inability to sit through another confrontation with those two people. Yes, I was lying in my personal life with them. I was in a bad place. A place where I could not be myself or speak my mind in my own house or at work without, in my mind, risking being kicked out of the way, my apartment, and possibly my job. So I kept my thoughts and my plan to myself until I was ready. I knew all their responses anyways. So they unknowingly forced my hand and I told them I was leaving TWI during said confrontation. I gave them no reason. I just told them after they told me all that they thought I was doing wrong, that I needed to take some time off from the Way and that it was not about any personal relationships I had outside of TWI. This was the truth. In the following 24 hours I got calls from family and from the limb coordinator, all asking me to talk and to reconsider my decision. I refused to talk and obviously did not reconsider. In my first post here, my "my story" post, I said I refused to talk to family, Way friends, and leadership in part as an FU to them. A subtle way of letting them know they don't have and won't know all the answers. That was definitely part of it on some level. I also didn't want them to take what I said and spin it to fit TWI's narrative on how screwed up I was, twisting my words to make them dislike me more, pity me more, or what ever. I had seen so many scenarios like that in the past and I didn't want to give TWI anything and felt I didn't owe any of them anything. I definitely was concerned about whether I would ever see or speak to my family much after leaving and there was a very real fear that me saying anything would cement that possibility all the more. The fear of never seeing them again proved to be unfounded. After a year or so, family ties began to mend in spite of the fact that I still have not discussed this with 2/3's of them. Since then, one brother has left the corps and the Way with his family, the other is heading into the corps with his, while my parents show no signs of ever leaving. In spite of my original thoughts of trying to figure out a way to help them realize how bad TWI is, I again have said nothing. They have made their own choices in their own time. I don't know how much my decision to leave without explaining things to them has affected their paths in any way, but I know that if it caused them any pain, any confusion, any doubt, any discomfort... I can't say I'm sorry. When you are comfortable in a screwed up organization, those thoughts and feelings are not the worst thing that could happen.
  6. They are similar in that you won't find a bright bulb in the lot of them. *zing*
  7. Wow, some of this thread is just jam packed with crazy! Anyway Bless you my child. It seems that certain brands of right wing Christianity think they are so right and that everything else is so wrong that anything can become a religion. If it disagrees with their brand of God it is suddenly a religion, by having something before their god. Their perfect world would be a theocracy.... their theocracy. There is usually a shortage of sympathy, empathy, and compassion in these religions as well.
  8. How could it not? One party is overtly anti-gay. One party is hyper pro-gun. In the 90's and beyond it was pretty clear who to vote for. That being said, LCM was pretty opinionated about the Gulf War and Bush Sr.'s "new world order" etc. It definitely influenced my political leanings but not explicitly who to vote for. I voted for Perot both times he was on the ballot. Since then it's kinda been a 180... but not on everything.
  9. So that's why almost everything is still here.
  10. I haven't read all the posts so I apologize if this has been discussed already but... We are talking about a man that for over a decade marked and avoided anyone that disagreed with him or anyone that he felt like booting when he had a bad day. This was a man that would scream and spit at his fawning audience challenging them "you think you know more about what the Word says about love? I defy anyone who thinks they do!" (paraphrased) No matter what anyone says, how great so and so was and what sort of stand they took yadda yadda yadda. If they were still around at the time of LCM's dismissal they had spent over a decade either shaking in their shoes or kissing his. Regardless of what you think about the Bible and spiritual things like revelation and God working in people, the finals days of the LCM reign showed that clearly none of that was happening in TWI and especially not in the upper echelons. Just another typical fraudulent tabloid religious group.
  11. I don't think that most people that go to sites like "E" and others aren't looking for anything outside of making fun of other people. As an agnostic/atheist, I don't feel that Christians are loosers. I have a hard time thinking in terms of "the world" this or "the world" that. I think there are plenty of good people around if your take the risk of putting your real self out there. That is a risk though because there certainly are plenty of jacka$$es out there too. It's a risk we have to take to find who are the good ones. I think there's more than we realize. Plenty of families to join and people to welcome. See you around at the new place. I should drop by occasionally... and get your ire up ; )
  12. My wife looked it up either before, when we were friends, or when we first started dating. The girl I was dating before her towards the end of my involvement in twi also looked it up. They both were very shocked and concerned about the group I was involved in and asked me about it. At the time I said it was probably a mix of some truth and some bitter axe grinding. What they both noted as a reason for their surprise was because what they read about TWI was so radically different from the person they knew (me.) I think that is one reason there are ex-way and current wayfers that come here and scoff at all the claims and stories. It was a moderately sized organization but still had a wide variety of people and some were effected more than others. What gets lost in all that is that the core teachings of TWI are what caused the hurt and abuse that we read and write about here. That has not changed. What also gets lost is that the abuse and pain was much more prevalent than any of us knew while we were in.
  13. Cheers, Paw. You've done a good thing here. It has done a lot for me. I'm just glad I'm not addicted to this place the way I used to be, otherwise I would be seriously jonesing for some greasy goodness come the new year.
  14. I'm glad you've all made up. Is forgiveness a Christian principle? I think historical documents have shown that "the golden rule" is hardly a Christian principle and from what I can tell that is the most basic way I see you presenting this. I'm still trying to make this one fit into the greater context of the Bible. First God is supposed to be love, and the Bible says to be followers as dear Children. It says to forgive, requires you to forgive, if you are to be forgiven... but that doesn't fit with the Christ story. Plus, under this construct, God only forgives conditionally... as we forgive others. It gets a little circular at this point, but we're supposed to forgive no matter what, where as God only forgives upon this condition, yet we're supposed to follow his loving example. Is this yet another conundrum that is only in my understanding? Seems to me we are allowing these people to have way more power over us than they actually have and perhaps that is part of the root problem. I think we are giving forgiveness more power than it actually has as well. I'll agree that is can be a tool to get over mental barriers that are keeping some people from moving on. Still it is a tool that, as many have admitted here, takes a long time to work through, as most abusive incidents do regardless of whether people forgive the abuser or not. It also seems that since other people can clearly move on with happy, satisfied lives without forgiving everyone, then we need to have the nebulous immeasurable - "grow spiritually" as well as this watering down of what forgiveness means. I'm not picking on anyone here or trying to be mean. I'm just challenging some of these assertions and giving a few reasons why some of us see the requirement of forgiveness as more a tool of control than simply a tool to help people move on. Which would be one of numerous reasons why some of us atheists might want to put our two sense in here, since all of us, even though we're no longer Christians, still care about people.
  15. I'd hope everyone has come a long way, Clay. Although, if my memory serves me correctly, I believe that thread you are referencing started off with a slightly different tone and approach. I think we can all agree that perhaps here more than most places, tone and approach are key in getting a conversation friendly response. I'm sure you know this well ; ) I do wonder how many people's views of forgiveness have changed since that thread. I know mine have not.
  16. Bingo. It's been a while, Oak, but as usual said it better and more succinctly than I ever could. I would agree with that. Although, that isn't going to sit well with the commonly held belief that the bible has all the answers no matter what your society. But what is the Bible's form of forgiveness anyway? It doesn't seem to be as clear as some would say. On one hand you've got the Lord's prayer saying forgive us our sins in the same way we forgive those of others. On the other hand you're told to forgive each other the way God through the messiah has forgiven you. The former is based on your acts of forgiveness while the later is based on God's master plan that was in place long before you were around and about payment for generations of sins through suffering, death and blood. Neither seems to be about healing. Did Jesus need to forgive his killers to move on? Does God need to forgive you your sins to move on? I don't see bitterness (claimed to be caused by lack of forgiveness) as being the thing that binds us to "the wounds of yesterday" and to those that caused the wounds. That would be pain. Pain is understandable while bitterness by way of unforgiveness puts the blame back on the one who has been harmed. That's unacceptable in mind. Bitter people are people who harbor a lot of pain. The "moving on" and "letting go" that we're talking about is letting go of the pain. As with any wound, pain goes away before or while the healing takes place. I think that is what many of you are talking about with forgiveness. I see no need to define forgiveness in a way that suits our day, other than this "need" to forgive because we are told to by the Bible and religious leaders. Forgive for fear of not being forgiven or in the hopes of being forgiven? How about forgive those that deserve it and stay away from those that repeatedly hurt you. Don't hold a grudge unless someone has repeatedly proven themselves unworthy of your friendship and your time. Deal with your pain, learn from it, let it go and move on.
  17. Really well put... "intense loneliness in engaging in such inner conflict". That's one reason I left twi the way I did, without giving anyone any real clear reasons. The other half of this equation is that any negatives, if you voiced them, would come back to something wrong with you. I still see this as a form of control, whether intended or not, because if you get to a point where you can't be honest with yourself about negatives thoughts, feelings, and situations then you can't really deal with them and you can't get any answers outside of their simplistic answers.
  18. Bringing this back up to the original topic.... If I remember correctly, didn't TWI lawyers bring up the required "thank you I'm so blessed" letters in court to show how happy and grateful some of the prosecuting parties were while in TWI. I would think this positive diary that could be subpoenaed, was another CYA technique TWI was using for the corps peoples. Is my memory correct on that one?
  19. We also had a guy in our area that owned his home outright and he was lauded as a shining example. Of course, he was only able to do this because he sold his other house for a decent profit when he was told he needed to sell. He then bought a smaller cheaper house outright. He also was a successful business owner and may have had to borrow money at some point for that I'm sure. There are a few people that they do this with. But it seems no matter how small that number of people is it doesn't change the simple fact for the followers that it is indeed possible. It reminds me of a scene in the movie "Dumb and Dumber" where Jim Carry's character asks the leading lady what the chances are of her going on a date with him. She says about a million to one. He says, "so your saying there's a chance!" "Don't stop..... believin'!"
  20. I've pointed these things out a to numerous people before (as have many of you here to certain VP apologists) only to be told that no one is perfect. Paul wasn't perfect. David wasn't perfect. etc etc. BUT when you have a ministry build on a practices like this... deceiving with plagiarism, using a title that is deceiving, teaching doctrines that discourage questioning and critical thinking, then you need to seriously inspect the doctrine. These personal faults, while it makes it hard to believe this guy was the "man of God" he claimed to be, don't automatically make what he taught wrong. They should cause you to pause though and throw up some red flags. So you need to compare it to other doctrines, research outside their given "research principles" and see if it all holds up to reason. In short, you need to do what they've discouraged you to do and really look outside their box.
  21. I don't know how it is now, but I remember there were later Way D groups that had to have month to month leases. I think in some way that admitted the fact that any normal year+ lease is debt unless paid upfront. I also think they had something about "traveling light." If you had a mortgage, you couldn't just get up and go when you were told to. If you ever went WOW or Way D, from that point on your leases would begin and end around the end of each "ministry year" and you could therefore go wherever at that point. I think that was just a sidebar though. Although, if corps were doing this I can see how trying to sell a house at the last minute, once you got your corps assignment, could be difficult. As with most things the harsh doctrines started with the corps, then to the Adv Cl grads, then to Joe Wayfer. Towards the end of my way time I asked about leasing a car, if it was ok. The answer was no. I asked how it was any different from renting a house. I was asked, "well, how deep in debt do you want to be?" So apparently there were known acceptable limits in which you could give the adversary access to your life.
  22. That was tremendous. It also "blessed my socks off." Don't you go changin', WG... in other words don't look to the right nor to the left but stay on the path laid before you. In the name of the exceedingly great and powerful, prevailing name above all names Jesus Christ. Amen.
  23. I've often wondered if the jargon and cliches were tools of control or if it was just language perpetuated by a bunch of non-thinking tools. If you wanted to look good in the Way after all you had to do the three "R's" ... resolve to remember to regurgitate. If you could do it in your manifestations,....er, I mean if you were inspired to do so in your manifestations, all the better. Maybe you'd know better than me, but it seemed to me that when I hung out with corps they were much more likely to do what I just did and make fun of the jargon than the everyday Wayers were. I do wonder why they chose the words they chose to pick on. The fantastic vs. wonderful is pretty hilarious. You can be sure FABULOUS would have been turned down. But why not change the days of the week and the months as well? They already came up with new names for holidays and many other words, why not rename the plants while they were at it? Can't think of any good names off hand..... maybe Blesstune instead of Neptune. I think it has mostly to do with the culture of keeping people from thinking critically which I think was by design. Side effects include everyone's favorite secular book being the one that was mentioned on the latest STS, like "Death in the Tall Grass."
  24. But what about all the healing that happens for non-believers? What about the Christians that believe only to end up dead? You never knew their hearts how they believed. But now that they're dead it must have been their lack of believing? Really? H1N1 is a huge problem because of the 24hr news networks? What about the 1912 H1N1 outbreak that killed millions of people? Many died because of a lack of information and by extension poor disease prevention. The disease is probably less prevalent right now due to precautions people are taking out of concern and/or fear. It works great when you are in your own little Christian bubble, Keith. In the rest of the world though, "miracles" or unexplained phenomena and events have and do happen to people of different cultures, religions, and gods. I realize this is the doctrinal forum, but on issues like this, really on all issues in life, it is best to have a more rounded and informed view of the way life works than just one book that claims itself to be the word of God. There are far too many to choose just one and hang on it's every word. In the real world, as George pointed out, "sh!t happens" but so does amazing and wonderful things and they even happen to little ole' heathens like myself. All that damn time! The difference in my or some other unbeliever's "deliverances" and yours or some other religious person's is we are not asking our personal invisible friend. When we get better it is because something we or some else did or something unexplainable to us. When it happens to you... well it must be God, because you were praying for it. Meanwhile on the other end of the globe some crazy people are praying to their god for Christians to die horrible deaths, and sure enough it happens everyday with no need of a suicide bomber. IT MUST BE GOD! I'm sure they also have their own miraculous healing stories, maybe some one even gave them a camel right when they really needed one. If we stop the search for why things really happen, then it will always be God. "God works in mysterious ways." Mysteries are things we don't understand. Maybe that is why we don't see the miracles of the Bible anymore. It certainly isn't lack of belief. The US is the most religious industrialized nation in the world. Must be the fault of CNN or the government. i remember a limb coordinator telling a family member that the reason we aren't seeing people healed of incurable diseases, like the one he has, as we read in the Bible is because there is a lack of "collective believing" in the household and in the country.
  25. As our manner is, my brothers and I like to use catch phrases and biblical quotes (hell, just about anything) as euphemisms for going to the bathroom or other crude (read funny among us) behavior. eg. "unproductive evil" = constipation... obviously someone with this problem is not believing hard enough. "Believing images of victory" is also an unpopular but effective method. "I need to go boldly before the throne of grace" ... you get the idea. "I've seriously got to burn the chaff"... light a match, will ya? "spiritual hitchhikers?" try Charman's. Someone totally needs to write a book with a collection of these phrases and I put forward this title: "The Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Ministry."
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