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shortfuse

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Everything posted by shortfuse

  1. When I think about my time in the Way Corps, I don't think I ever really fully identified with being a minister. I mean I was invested, and spent my early adulthood trying to be one, but I was always suppressing a part of myself to do so. Since I left TWI, I have spent years trying to rediscover who I truly am, and what my own ambitions are. I have observed that a lot of people never find their way back to themselves. They want to recapture that thing they had where they were important, and listened to, and looked up to. They think that's who they are and nothing else feels right. And you can't easily integrate into any other religious setting. So you roll your own. I feel sympathy for them. I notice as a cult survivor, I have a certain proneness to cult-like groups of all stripes. Art cults, fitness cults, education cults. I see them everywhere. I'm trying to understand and heal the part of me that needs them. Not posting as a counter point, just some additional thoughts. PEACE.
  2. Yeah, I suppose you are right. I remember him saying how he put it together because VPW thought it was masturbation. So that got him to sexuality. What is sexually immoral? (Adultery? no, that can't be right.) Homosexuality!
  3. Hey, y'all. Thinking about something; wondering if anyone has already looked into this. Starting from the premise that VPW and LCM were not original thinkers, but rather borrowed from the work of others, I have been thinking about how that factors into The Way's Genesis 3 teaching. I think this has been swept on the rug in the present teaching, but there has also never been a retraction. I am speaking of the teaching from The Way of Abundance and Power which interpreted the Genesis 3 story of Eve and the Serpent to have been Eve having had a lesbian experience with the serpent who had taken on the form of a woman. Craig supported this by pointing to homophones in the text which he said had a strong sexual connotation and were a kind of double entendre. The "ah-ha" moment was when he revealed a panel from the Sistine Chapel which portrayed the serpent has having the torso of a woman. I have always thought this explanation was pretty wonky and a big leap, BUT... I was just looking at some art work this week which had the them of gay couples in the garden with a serpent, and I remembered the similar renaissance examples. This got me to thinking that as crazy as that teaching seemed to me, it must have some precedent somewhere, because Craig, like VPW before him, was unoriginal. Anyone know where the Craigers got this teaching?
  4. You make a good point. Heard it was like 3 couples. I'll see if I can find out.
  5. I heard they just M&A the ring leaders and left the rest intact. Not 100% that's it, but that's what my sources say.
  6. Interesting thread. I think the CP1 talk also lent itself to some OCD-ishness and overthinking somethings. We were drilled on attention to detail (not inherently bad) and tried to correct any tiny imperfection in things like mowing the grass and setting the table. Through this careful scrutiny of the "physicals" we might have perception in the spiritual. it also reminded me of a funny thought. We would sometimes chastise each for dumb mistakes saying, "Come on, man, this is like CP ZERO!"
  7. There's a group of Way Corps trying to actively reform TWI. They've engaged in some unfruitful letter writing campaigns with the BOD, and have a non-trivial number (by current numbers at least) of likeminded folks gathered. They seem to sincerely want to reform the way, most of them have been around way too long not to understand the futility of this. But we all need to walk our own path. They have been seeking an audience with the leadership to address grievances and in response they are being shunned. Magn3llis, M0ynihans, suspect Horn3ys will be next and anyone else who doesn't fall in. It is a familiar story. They are not going to change. The sooner people recognize that the sooner they can move forward in life. It's hard. I wish them well.
  8. I heard recently that the M@gnelli's have left TWI. Anyone with details? Rico care to comment?
  9. Sometimes I miss old crazy pants. I remember is frothy commentary on current events with fondness. It was way more entertaining than the Way of Rosalie.
  10. That account is from several years ago. I was never convinced it was actually him.
  11. That's heavy. Still working on this.
  12. Totally forgot about that. I remember the postcard, forgot the Bahamas trip was a victory trip. I also remember the stay-cation. I went to the place they make BeerNuts and LaffyTaffy. (Two different places.)
  13. My folks tried to go back and get reinstated. Request rejected. Reason given: "Too old to complete the L.E.A.D. program".
  14. This Corps Alumni business is an abiding pain to me. I hate it so much. There were so many folks, sold out wayfers (my parents among them), who were dropped from the Corps for arbitrary reasons (well, maybe as you guys point out it was monetary), and they were so wounded by this. They had their whole self worth wrapped up in this identity, and they were understandably crestfallen when it was revoked. So the Corps Alumni "status" comes along as a consolation prize. But even with that, they were jerks - "oh, we're not giving this to just anybody" you have to be the best of the best finest example of advanced class grads, not moping around feeling sorry for yourself (because of how we've just robbed you of your most prized characteristic, Way Corps status). So that was among my first jobs as a new corps grad was to tell some of these former Corps folks, sorry, you're not even Way Corps Alumni. And that was that. There was no earning that status back. My folks are way lifers, Corps grads, dropped from active corps for some arbitrary infraction, marked and avoided twice, begged their way back into the fold and still, STILL to this day are loyal wayfers, doing all the wayfer stuff - hosting fellowships, running the classes, etc. Are they Way Corps Alumni? nope. I met many people in these post-purge, post-LCM years that stayed loyal. They do whatever they are permitted to do in service to the way. But they carry around this profound sense of failure for being dropped from the Corps, or Way Corps Alum, or even as I said those who had that withheld. Anybody can see it, including those so called leaders in the way. They are supposed to be kinder and gentler now after LCM. Yet they won't lift the burdens off these folks. Apologize for wrongfully terminating them. Apologize for being so hard on them, and thanking them for sticking around. Any of those Corps grads still "standing" should rightfully get to be Corps Alumni, but the BOD won't even make that simple concession. Why? The don't care about people. Period. And they would never admit to mistakes of any kind, it undermines their authority. And the whole cult dynamic requires authority.
  15. So not cool of you to get this stuck in my head.
  16. That fulltime stuff was a disaster. I graduated into the second year of full-time corps. Somebody figured out they had put everyone on the payroll and not really defined their job. I think Craig just hoped that with all those Corps free to move the word, it was really going to turn things around and increase numbers. When I had my first assignment, we had a bit more of a job description - teach. So we were supposed to teach like 10 or 15 times a month and report back about it to the Limb. My wife and I both needed to do this, so it meant that we taught all the fellowships in our branch every week. Nobody else got to teach anymore so we could earn our keep. But that's not much of a growth strategy either, so somewhere in there they came up with Vision and Direction, a description for what the Corps was supposed to accomplish over the course of a year, with a bunch of new reporting requirements. (This could be and probably had already been another thread.) When all the Corps went full-time Craig bragged about how Ernst and Young told them it was crazy. The third and final year of all corps full time we went through extreme expense cutting measures, and everyone took a paycut. There was a prohibition on having kids. A bunch of extreme financial tightening put on the Corps. Then yeah, eventually, Revelation came that most of us should go get a secular job again. I don't know for sure if this is the case, but it seems reasonable to me that the Way Corps were among the most loyal financial contributors before this. When they went fulltime, they stopped making these contributions and became a big expense. I wondered for a while if the Craiggers was actually trying to intentionally destroy the way, but I don't think he was. I think he really thought the whole thing was a good idea, and it was going to work.
  17. The last Corps assignment I had, dude I was replacing gave me the low down on every single person in the branch before I got there. People he thought were under performing he was like, "Yeah, this guy is really 'Word over the World' if you know what I mean. Not really Prevailing."
  18. I think I was on my interim year when that went down, I remember those Corps Nights. I was still very young, and reverent of leaderdang but I recall being in disbelief. Are they *just not* figuring out what goes on at the ROA and Corps Week? (Excuse me, Fork of Ages, and Score Week.) I remember the Craiggers ranting about how he was amazed lightning didn't strike the big top and topple it on all of us. He also praised the field leaders who shook down the teens after the Rock.
  19. This is really interesting. It's actually smart. It's an SEO campaign. I recommended something like this 10 years ago when I was still on Team Wayfer. It used to be that any keywords you would associate with TWI would return anti-way sites in search engine results. John Juedes stuff, Greasespot articles and forums, other cult related writings would be at the top. They could have changed that by putting out more content across more platforms. As you know they were way late to the game of even having a website. Fast forward to present, and somebody has convinced Rosalie to experiment with this stuff. It's honestly surprising. But it is as you say marketing. I don't think they expect to reach anyone through these alternate channels, but maybe they are probing for what appeals most. Ultimately though, these additional sites, like TWI Twitter and Flickr feeds are all about boosting the rankings in search engines. Good job, Millennial Wayfer, whoever you are.
  20. I retract this thread. Not very well thought out.
  21. This may well have been discussed on these forums (RTFM me if you like). But I'm curious to know more about the split that apparently occurred when Wierwille adopted the "Way Tree" home fellowship based model for his group. I seem to remember it being said a big part of the existing ministry (or maybe just the leaders?) left at this point. How big a hit was that really? Wondering if this began with the influx of Jesus People folks and other hippie Christians. Was there any such thing as a presence outside of Ohio before this time? I know PFAL ran various places, but were there Way fellowships anywhere before the hippies? Thanks in advance for any deets you can offer.
  22. But it is still "for our learning" - ON SNAP!
  23. Honestly, I think it's geographical. If there is no one in an area that can do a "real" fellowship, then someone will do a Bible Study.
  24. I honestly wonder if there will be an installation. I bet they are more likely to do it privately, and then just trot him out as the new president. I don't expect him to be any more out front than Rosalie.
  25. yeah, awesome right? I'm not sure how new this is, I think at least a year old. It does all boil down to a BOD that is clueless and unable to admit they are wrong. We had something similar about 10 years ago when we were pressured to make smaller fellowship sizes and more fellowships. It was supposed to improve retention by giving people more individualized attention. With the no-debt policy ("we don't have a debt policy, we have a teaching from God's Word, and requirements to participate in certain programs..." yeah, yeah, shut up, it's a policy), we had not enough fellowship coordinator candidates to meet the new "more, smaller groups" mandate. This led to the invention in some areas of the "Fellowship Contact", a person who was the de facto fellowship coordinator but without the title. The branch coordinator was supposed to be the real coordinator, giving them extra attention, because they didn't have a real coordinator. I always hated that and treated them like the rest of the hfc's. Back then I still thought it would work itself out - they would see the problem and fix it. I was wrong of course. Recently, I was talking to my mom about this Bible Study/Fellowship distinction. She told me one of them - I think the Bible Study - was supposed to be more outreach focused while the other was more in-depth in the Word. I might be flipping it, but it seemed silly. "Oh, so you guys aren't focused on outreach now?" "No, no, we still do outreach." "Well, what's the distinction? What do they do that you don't do, and visa versa?" Never really got anywhere on that. They are still trying really hard to figure out how to "move the Word". It must be discouraging and confusing to believe the Word IS over the World, and this here now is what prevailing looks like. Nobody wants what they are peddling.
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