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I think the callousness that’s so prevalent in TWI is empathy’s mortal enemy. There have been a number of threads discussing wierwille’s narcissism ...It’s pretty evident in his doctrine and practice that he was fixated on achieving some kind of power over others, gave off an air of superiority and among other things he never seemed willing to empathize with the feelings, wishes and needs of other people – it was always his way or the highway. As a person of great influence to those who were his biggest fans - I think it’s inevitable that a lot of those narcissistic traits would rub off onto others. What do you think ? I’m NOT saying that everyone who admired him and followed his example became a narcissist. Here’s what I think - no matter how much you were able to empathize with others, the unspoken protocol of TWI tended to squelch any personal observations or logical reasoning – “yeah, that’s just five-senses stuff anyway – because what people really need is the word”… right? How many times have you sat through a meeting on how to put a class together and heard something along the lines of “does it really matter if they can’t pay their bills, don’t have a job or have some hard-luck story ? Bottom line is they need to take the class because they’ll learn how to believe God to overcome any situation.” I had this dumb idea of what it took to be a successful “salesman” for whatever TWI wanted me to promote; it took real discipline and the love of God in the renewed mind in manifestation (oh gag!) to suppress any natural rapport or compassion I might have toward others - and instead challenge the person to put God first – buying into whatever I was promoting…if I wanted to really tease them with the power of PFAL (double-gag in 2 barf bags!) I’d say something like “it may not feel right five-senses-wise right now, but spiritual-wise it will make a lot of sense to you later on” (ay-yai-yai 3 barf bags with a twist!). …Have you ever done something along those lines? Have you ever went against the grain of how you would have normally treated someone before you got into TWI – to try to motivate them to participate in something with The Way Ministry? Did you feel you had to wrap up your cold, clinical prescription of believing-the-word-is-the-answer-to-everything in something warm and fuzzy (whatever that means) so you could tell yourself you can still empathize with people? I think to be a really good leader in TWI – you had to be a really good salesman…a really good salesman will always find a way to circumvent any objection, reason, situation, or excuse you could throw at them in order that one way or another you wind up doing what they suggest. I think in the long run (depending on length of time and involvement) many folks (including myself) developed somewhat of a “callus” of variable thickness over a heart that was subjected to the friction and irritation from the hard-hearted unspoken protocol that our “dear” narcissistic leader "encouraged" us to follow. Perhaps one of the things that drives cult leaders to be insensitive and have a cruel disregard for others is the fear of losing control over some aspect of the person…just speculating here – but I would be interested in getting input from Grease Spotters on anything that I've said. love & peace T-Bone