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I really would like to see more cult awareness brought to our society,i wonder if HBO

would tap into this.

I watched some of the in treatment show on today and it was like kindergarten therapy

talking about a cappachino machine (please!!)

If you had this show based on cult survivors(twi)how would you present it to society?

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I'm not sure it's really possible.

Maybe we could just start by helping each other and see what evolves from that.

BTW--- I really enjoy the perspective you have brought to these discussions.

:wave:

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Sometimes times it hurts to be honest.........we hide behind work,newspapers or activities

we must attend.

Since i have become awakened to some extent i have had the feeling of wanting to submerge

because knowingly and unknowingly because i know dealing with this face to face will be like

climbing a steep wall with no footholds and barehands.

Each foothold must MUST be secure!

I can not afford another fall, another lie,no hiding..the mask must come off...pealed off

slowly so that the TRUTH CAN BE EXPOSED.

THIS is therapy..this is how you heal.

I must be aware of hidden feelings in the heart that decieve me that TWI was a good thing.

I had accepted a therory from vpw and trusted his teachings were of a true God(or we

should just throw the whole book out in the trash!)

What i found was an acceptance of human love in very green wow ambassadors that also

longed for human love and a family that never abandoned you were there 24/7(at least

in the beginning when you were undersheparded)

We were all clinging on to this life raft in shark infested waters of manipulation and greed

from a company with dollar signs in their eyes called THE WAY.

Fast forword two years into my second year on the field,I had become a fearless human

with a terminator type attitude looking for souls. Shunning very thing else out of my site.

My past was a thousand miles behind me...gone....DEAD

It was buried with the "old man" in a thousand doors shut and bolted locked.

With no key in sight to open the first door....what was best for the "ministry"was all that

mattered...i was committed..sold out..a bond slave for CHRIST??????????????????????

and i did not feel good about this like i once did and began to look for my exit not only

to escape physically but mentally and emotionally.

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page 2

I worked two blocks fom the white house in d.c. at an optical store,dressed as nicely as

i could in my budget of thrift store clothes,pressed and ironed shoes polished,the whole

discipline of being a good steward of things.

At the end of the day i would get on the metro and return to my twig,one wow sister,3

wow brothers and a cheap roach infested overpriced apt in northeast d.c.

Sometimes we would eat,sometimes not. we all went back to our cocoons and our new way

of life!

On a good day we would go see the museums which were all free and witness to homeless

people who had no food either.

Lucky for fast food turnover hiring that was how most wows ate,or..survived.between us

all five we had l broken down car driven from arizona on the last leg of life.

On a better day we would go to limb an have a feast with other way believers also living

the "abundent life" in cocoon shells.

My first year on the field right after roa my wow sister had a car a volvo,pretty nice for

a wow..until it broke down on the way to idaho and we were told to LEAVE IT on the hiway

it was an attack of the adversay trying to wipe us

out before we even got to out destination...(ha)that is how important our mission was that

God was sending us too(through hqs cow plop decisions of where in the world to send wows!

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page 3

alone..........i walk into the hollow building slowly quiely with reverance as if visiting a sick friend in an intensive

care ward.

my focus is on the God i believe in the one i believe to be real that i have failed serving,..........his name Jesus.

A man of sorrow on a wooden cross, a God who experienced such horror and sadness because he so loved the WORLD.

As i walk closer i am powered by the heartbeat with the blood running through my veins bought and paid for by this

JESUS.

I feel i don't belong here...i feel sad because i can't serve God with a true calling.........and i have nothing left to give

NOTHING

what stands between us is an alter of holiness i can't enter and i feel like an orphaned child..alone..just visiting.

I stand with the sword in my hand given to every follower as the seed of sowers,i had to bring it back and lay it down.

It tormants my soul...i wanted this more than anything at one time...and now i lay my sword down and i will walk away.

I can no longer fight....i am weary.i can stand no more.....I walk away in silence only hearing the

echos of my shoes

and HONESTY.

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page 4

10 years go by............

therapy begins . You fill in the rest(IF IT HELPS YOU) OR IF YOU THINK IT CAN HELP OTHER PEOPLE COMING

OUT OF THE WAY INTERNATIONAL.

OR IF YOU THINK IT MIGHT HELP OUR SOCIETY TO UNDERSTAND.........AND FIND HEALING .

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page 4

10 years go by............

therapy begins . You fill in the rest(IF IT HELPS YOU) OR IF YOU THINK IT CAN HELP OTHER PEOPLE COMING

OUT OF THE WAY INTERNATIONAL.

OR IF YOU THINK IT MIGHT HELP OUR SOCIETY TO UNDERSTAND.........AND FIND HEALING .

If you have been to therapy and you have a good therapist that knows what she is doing that is.it can be

really really hard and this is a little how i was feeling one day going in,

The fever is high 104........the room unfamiliar.

I sit near the door..the clock clicks loudly in my minds eye

The meter is running i try not to cry...

I'm calm but i'm nervous unsure what to do...

The sand in the hour glass makes the next move.

There 's blood and pain when anger speaks...

Mirrors break and scars run deep

Carefully she takes the hook from our silent mouth

We speak and it's hard to hear...but she says....

We will get through this someway-somehow

This time i try..i am out on a limb

They say she's the best for dissorders such as this

I NEED THIS TO LIVE LIKE A RARE BLOOD TYPE

that comes from the marrow only specialist can give

A crossword puzzle my life seems to be...

Getting lost in words,scrambled thoughts and memories..

Fading out...trying to hide in a storm with high winds....

I close both my eyes...

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i remember hearing in twi the sentence..we are establishing habit patterns to last a lifetime,

So,in therapy we are breaking habit patterns and replacing them with what the individual wants in their life

to believe or not.

what do you want ?

how do i get rid of the wrong teaching in my head?

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Some of the definitions of a cult have to do with the group all saying the same things, all talking the same way, and all acting the same way. America must be a cult. This silly Valspeak began in California in the early 1980's. The gross overuse of the word "like" as an unnecessary filler word is now used by almost everyone forty and younger. Again with the Valspeak, words are incorrectly ordered in the sentences of almost all people forty and younger. Emphasis is put on the wrong parts of words, and it's widespread. This crazy and silly sounding way of speaking has spread across the entire nation and hardly anyone can step back and look at it objectively. The entire nation is acting like a cult, all acting and speaking the same way. It's like we are in Stepford Nation.

Fads or trends spread the same way. Almost 80 percent of people in the DC/Baltimore area wear flip flops or sandals or other open-toed footwear away from work and many are wearing open-toed footwear to work. Except for dressier footwear for women, I was almost unheard of to wear such casual footwear to a job 10 years ago. This is a national fad that is practically everywhere, most especially in any urban area.

People, nationally, just go through their typical routines without thinking about why they do what they do. They mindlessly mimic those around them. If other people wear open-toed shoes, they do it too. If they hear someone speaking in this unusual way, they do it too. They just mindlessly follow the traditional routines they see around them. If they were raised Catholic, they remain Catholic because it requires no real objective thinking to analyze whether Catholicism is right or wrong. The same holds true for other denominations.

Yes, our entire nation seems to be brainwashed to follow the path of least resistance and just do what everyone else is doing. The Cult of America says stay Catholic no matter how unbiblical this denomination is. The Cult of America says to use the word "like" after the pronouns such as I, he, she, or they. The Cult of America says to add the word "so" before the word amazing even though amazing is already a word to add emphasis, therefore being redundant in speech.

How do we break free from cults? We think for ourselves. We act and think without bitterness or hatred. We hold God as our priority, not any religion, church, or denomination. We take the good things from our time in the cult, examine how we can use them in our current timeframe free our any organizational ties or binds. We hold on to good memories. We set our sights on the glory that God has in store for us, a glory that is not tied to any particular organization or special group or special man.

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Dave

While I see your point about homogenization, I find I really can't agree.

On the small work crew, of which I am a part, we have people from Ghana, Niger, Somalia, Tanzania, Ivory Coast and Mexico.

They all speak multiple languages. One person actually speaks 8 languages quite fluently.

America is truly a "melting pot".

The fact that cults tend to dress alike and use selective phrases to exclude themselves from the masses is a byproduct not a defining component.

Charismatic leadership, insight into some privileged knowledge, obsession with the group and its activities, exclusion of outsiders, etc. is more what one tends to think of when defining a cult.

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I don't see what BFDave sees.

I don't hear Valley speak when I talk to younger people or from my children or their teen friends.

I don't see dress alike people every where though here I do see people in jeans all the time (in the Rockies), but that has always been the case here. At work I do see lots of flip flops in the summer but I see nothing wrong with that. Ours is a casual dress work environment.

Denominational churches are bleeding away their congregations. Have you been in a Mainstream church? Look around--Hardly anyone under sixty!

Being a good Catholic is hard work. I suspect most of my generation left (or is just a member in name) the RC church, more likely over the birth control issue than Biblical accuracy.

When I look around at work or my friends I see lots of variety--in lifestyle, religion, interests, politics, hobbies.

I don't see homogenization on a huge scale.

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There is a differance between stero types and "spiritual warfare" biblefandave, American is a melting pot

of all people nationalities and cultures, and yes religons too.

But. A CULT is not a valspeak thing, unless the person in the cult in HIS mind was doing that for that reason

I guess(kinda sick )

In treatment, and therapy it takes lots of work and its NOT "like" playtime for attention seeking valley

people or clones of cults, people that go to therapy or seek help after being in a CULT have a desire to

break away from the mindset of such/I call it spiritual warfare.

You should not sterotype Catholics either. Some of the best people I ever met were and still are Catholic.

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Now, I don't want anyone to get the idea that I think TWI is a good organization. There are way too many things that are bad about TWI. TWI was supposed to be about searching the Bible for truth. Well, LCM and other other BOT members weren't interested in hearing the truth when confronted with it back in '86 and '87. Leaders went completely against seeking truth and went out establishing organizational doctrine which was hypocritical to how TWI leaders viewed the denominational churches. I could go on and on ad nauseum regarding the mistakes made. False accusations were levied against members. Leaders broke up families and marriages. And on and on.

What I am saying is the so-called "mainstream" Christians labeled TWI a cult solely based upon the teaching that Jesus Christ was not God. I have spoken with a number of priests, ministers, and other church members who have said so. TWI was not considered a cult because LCM ordered 15% giving. TWI was not considered a cult because of its members used the same lingo or acronyms. TWI was not considered a cult because of systematic seminars. "Mainstream" Christians deemed TWI was not "mainstream" because TWI did teaching the Trinity. What constituted "mainstream"? It was sheer numbers. The majority determined who was part of the the majority and then labeled minority how they chose to label them. The power to label lied with the majority who had the numbers in their favor.

The Roman Catholic Church teaches far more error than TWI ever taught and has done far more personal harm than TWI ever did, but they have the numbers to power their way into the "mainstream". One can find plenty of Biblical errors in all of the denominations. Could we find betrayal from the mainstream? Certainly so. As a matter of fact, the first time I read PFAL, I was irate with the Christian denominations for having deceived me.

What I am saying about cults is that the cult word getting thrown about without real regard to what the organization is all about. I am absolutely, 100% sure that there are people in TWI that love God and love God's Son and love God's Word. I admit that I really don't know what TWI is teaching now and what motivates their members to stay committed to it. I am also sure that there are people in the Catholic Church that love God. The same holds true for other denominational churches. When I went into TWI, I was not "recruited". I went in because I had checked out other organizations and found them lacking in what I wanted. I was not brainwashed. Instead, I relished the truths that I learned while I was there. Yet, in learning how to understand the Bible, I was also able to understand what erroneous teachings I was hearing. There was no mind control. There was no demand to sound like someone else. I never worshipped VPM or LCM. I respected them before I found out their transgressions. I decided when it was time to leave. There was no mind control keeping me from leaving. There were no threats made against me. I left when I felt that I could not, in good conscience, continue to fellowship with the organization until corrections were made. Those corrections were never made, as far as I understand. Yet, I don't hate or loathe the leaders of TWI. They were feeble human beings who made sinful mistakes. I have made mistakes in my life. I don't think about fellow Christian is beyond forgiveness.

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Cults, wonderful on the outside but on the inside are very manipulating. Cult leaders are desperate to trick you into joining. They are after your obedience, your time and your money.

Cults use sophisticated mind control and recruitment techniques that have been refined over time. Beware of thinking that you are immune from cult involvement, the cults have millions of members around the world who once thought they were immune, and still don’t know they are in a cult! To spot a cult you need to know how they work and you need to understand the techniques they use. Teaching you these things is what this article is all about.

This article exposes the secret techniques cults will use to try and trick and control you. Cult leaders will not want you to read this, but read it anyway. Once you understand How Cults Work you will be better able to spot and avoid cult recruiters, and protect your family and friends.

First let’s eliminate some misconceptions about cults.

For more info go to www.CULTWATCH.com

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We can make almost anything a cult if that is our agenda. Some people consider Amway and Shaklee a cult. In Christendom, the "mainstream" deemed what was "mainstream" and deemed what was not mainstream as being a cult.

Yes, after LCM took over as president, things went drastically downhill. Then, after John Lynn, John Schoenheit, et al confronted LCM and the BOT, many people left. That's when the re-examination of beliefs and practices occurred. Many TWI members, including myself, expected the research team to correct some errors in previous teachings. After all, we were supposed to all be in search of the truth. I would not have thought anything of it if corrections had been made along the way. But, John Lynn and the others recommended a departure from TWI and began to disclose many ungodly practices that had been occurring under the watch of LCM and the BOT. It was after this re-examination of beliefs and practices began by those who had left that people developed bad feelings toward TWI.

People, in general, react to circumstances in many different ways. After divorces, some divorcees remain friendly with their exes. Some of them act in a detached manner. Some harbor bitterness and anger. Some teenagers feel rejection in junior high school or high school but manage to tough it out. Some focus their rejection toward talents or other interests. Some react with bitterness and anger, even to the point that we've had incident such as that which happened at Columbine High School in Colorado.

Former TWI members reacted in a variety of different circumstances. Some deemed TWI a cult and searched for all the various things they could point to that could be characterized as cultic in nature. For those people, in their minds, they needed to dismiss everything about TWI and considering it to be a cult was the way to do so. Others continued following God's Word in Christian Educational Services and Christian Family Fellowship Ministries and the other groups of ex-TWI members. These groups had the luxury of looking at the flaws of TWI and make the appropriate changes. Some simply swore off having anything to do with the Bible or Christianity, in general. Some, wavered between distrust of anything associated with TWI and trying to maintain some connection with ex members.

Essentially, if you are determined to consider something a cult, you can find reasons to do so. The problem lies in our minds when we can't forgive. The problem lies in our minds when we harbor bitterness and hatred. The problem lies in our minds when we judge others unfairly because we have personal issues with something.

Don't get me wrong. I do not trust the current version of TWI one iota to teach truth. Of course, I don't trust the Catholic Church, the Assemblies of God Church, the Episcopalians, the Mormons, or the Jehovah's Witnesses to teach me the truth either. Yet, I don't have any personal issues with those other groups. The only thing that prevents people from considering Catholicism as cultic is the sheer numbers. Power in numbers gets them into the mainstream. Without the numbers, without the money, without the guilt put upon members of the Catholic Church about leaving, they would be considered as much or more of a cult than any other group. And for those of us who were around in the 70's, people were deprogrammed after converting to Catholicism. And I will never place any man other than Jesus Christ above me in my relationship with God. I will not bow to the pope or to a "man of God" or a cardinal or a deacon or a Saint between me and my God.

David

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Yes, after LCM took over as president, things went drastically downhill.

Well..it was going downhill before that! I left before that even happened, I left because of various

reasons but mainly because it was a scam to even call this "cult type organization" biblical research"!!!

That is like a child with a magnify glass or a student microscope discovering "spit" for the first time!

It is an INSULT to even remotely compare The Way International to an type of "biblical research and

teaching ministry"

When everyone grows up and finds out it was just SPIT UNDER THE MICROSCOPE the entire time

and to that LIE of vpw sears your brain like a cow being branded for ownership ...well yeah that kinda

creates JUST anger and bitterness to the point you hope to GOD that NO ONE has to be involved in

that lie,and decieved STILL by people using "the word of God" for personal gain(the fat cats in lil old

new knoxville ohio.)

But..darkness can't hide in TRUE LIGHT so all will and is being exposed as we speak on this,my prayer

is that people are NOT hurt while searching for answers.

Edited by cheranne

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Craig Martindale, Don Wierwille, and Howard Allen certainly screwed everything up. Then John Lynn and John Schoenheit and Robert Belt and Sue Pierce and others had the nerve to show us wrong doctrines and practices from TWI.

LCM and the BOT could have acted toward the reproof they received by humbly admitting the errors of their ways and by taking a back seat to the research team to get teaching accurate again. That didn't happen.

Yes, I certainly get mad thinking about how LCM could have saved TWI and kept things going the way they were supposed to go. TWI was supposed to be commited to teaching the truth. LCM and the BOT broke their commitment to God by not doing so. LCM was supposed to obey God and keep God's Word in his heart. He do not do so. LCM acted out of pride and lust.

So, what happened? TWI fell apart. Those few that remained were subjected to unconscienable guilt and false accusations and had to change their allegiance from God to an organization. Did that make TWI a cult? Well, plenty of denominations abandoned truth for man's traditions. Is TWI any worse than the Roman Catholic church and its pagan-filled teachings and writings? There is no logical way TWI could be considered worse. Yet, TWI was supposed to do for us what the RC Church couldn't do, and that was to give us the truth. It was personal. Now, being that it was personal. We were betrayed. We were cut off from our friends. We were uncertain and had to go back and re-examine our beliefs. Does that make TWI a cult? Our personal emotions and reactions don't dictate what's a cult. In all logical reasoning, the most cultic organization would be the most paganistic Christian organization and that would be the RC Church. So, is TWI a cult? Does that mean it's good? No, of course not. Do some people need to label TWI a cult as a coping mechanism to deal with the betrayal and losing of contact with friends and with having to re-examine beliefs? Some people do. Everyone reacts to circumstances differently.

Now, what TWI did offer us was a hunger in our hearts for God's Word. There is nothing that needs to curb that hunger. We have people of avenues to pursue that. STTF and CFFM and Liberating Ministries for Christ and Sangat Bains and other groups have resources we can use to feed that hunger. We don't need the judgmental name-calling and cult-labeling. We need God's truth. There is no one organization that holds the cornerstone on that.

David

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It was a money making pyramid scheme, designed, initially, to fill the coffers of one VP Wierwille and afford him opportunities to satisfy his many varied lusts. Thinking it was anything noble is really an exercise in self delusion----IMO

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Craig Martindale, Don Wierwille, and Howard Allen certainly screwed everything up. Then John Lynn and John Schoenheit and Robert Belt and Sue Pierce and others had the nerve to show us wrong doctrines and practices from TWI.

LCM and the BOT could have acted toward the reproof they received by humbly admitting the errors of their ways and by taking a back seat to the research team to get teaching accurate again. That didn't happen.

Yes, I certainly get mad thinking about how LCM could have saved TWI and kept things going the way they were supposed to go. TWI was supposed to be commited to teaching the truth. LCM and the BOT broke their commitment to God by not doing so. LCM was supposed to obey God and keep God's Word in his heart. He do not do so. LCM acted out of pride and lust.

So, what happened? TWI fell apart. Those few that remained were subjected to unconscienable guilt and false accusations and had to change their allegiance from God to an organization. Did that make TWI a cult? Well, plenty of denominations abandoned truth for man's traditions. Is TWI any worse than the Roman Catholic church and its pagan-filled teachings and writings? There is no logical way TWI could be considered worse. Yet, TWI was supposed to do for us what the RC Church couldn't do, and that was to give us the truth. It was personal. Now, being that it was personal. We were betrayed. We were cut off from our friends. We were uncertain and had to go back and re-examine our beliefs. Does that make TWI a cult? Our personal emotions and reactions don't dictate what's a cult. In all logical reasoning, the most cultic organization would be the most paganistic Christian organization and that would be the RC Church. So, is TWI a cult? Does that mean it's good? No, of course not. Do some people need to label TWI a cult as a coping mechanism to deal with the betrayal and losing of contact with friends and with having to re-examine beliefs? Some people do. Everyone reacts to circumstances differently.

Now, what TWI did offer us was a hunger in our hearts for God's Word. There is nothing that needs to curb that hunger. We have people of avenues to pursue that. STTF and CFFM and Liberating Ministries for Christ and Sangat Bains and other groups have resources we can use to feed that hunger. We don't need the judgmental name-calling and cult-labeling. We need God's truth. There is no one organization that holds the cornerstone on that.

David

well...lets see how do I say this I don't consider calling TWI a Cult because it is a coping mechanism to me, no

more than I would call a WalMart a "store".

That is simply what it is. Also the "hunger I had to want to know God" didn't come from The Way International

I had that allready and it is why I was intrested in "the class" and I was not religious so TWI seemed laid back

and comfortable(at first!) then I realized it was anything BUT laid back and relaxed,it was just a dumb decision

I made at a young age in life.

When I need Gods truth I simply go look out in nature...it is simple to understand and free.

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Being considered a cult just means a group is not considered mainstream by the mainstream. Yet, being mainstream is in no way meaning something is good. The Roman Catholic Church was certainly mainstream, yet they engaged in the practice of selling indulgences. The RC Church exterminated (or you can say murdered) people who did not convert to Catholicism. That in no way made the RC Church right, even though they were mainstream. They kept themselves mainstream by eliminating many who did not adopt mainstream ideas.

Thus, the cult label is completely irrelevant. Cult does not mean good or bad because it is an inflammatory, judgmental label that has no basis in truth.

When I was first introduced to TWI, I was enraged about how the denominational churches that deceived me regarding doctrines they taught. Comparing TWI to RC, far more truth taught by TWI than RC. Episcopalians almost as bad as RC. Assemblies of God not far behind. Comparing doctrinal errors, just about all denominations far outrank TWI in the number of false doctrines taught.

Thus, it all comes back to the emotional reaction to have been involved in TWI, then finding out that it wasn't as perfect as we thought. Most people did not have an appreciation for God and the Bible until they got involved with TWI. Thus, there were good things about TWI. Our emotional reactions and coping mechanisms do not negate that fact.

It would be helpful is there was a more logical approach to TWI than what I have seen here at GSC. Most people seem to be here to vent hatred and bitterness and that is exactly how the Devil wanted us to react.

David

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There is specific criteria that can be used to determine if a group is a cult.

This criteria can be approached and applied in an objective manner if one has a desire to do so.

Some groups display certain characteristics but lack others.

Consider, for example, the fans who turn out for Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Much of the behavior surrounding the immediate experience of being in the theater is cult-like in nature.

I would not call these people a cult, though, because many of the key defining elements are missing.

One of these elements is the presence of a charismatic leader.

Also, as far as I know, once these people leave the theater, they return to their normal lives.

It doesn't consume their daily thoughts.

The Way was a cult.

We had a charismatic leader. We thought he (and we) had some special truth that was exclusive. The activities of The Way consumed our thoughts, day in and day out. We obsessed over our involvement. The list goes on.

The point I am trying to make is that it is not an act of bitterness or hatred to acknowledge the reality of The Way's true nature. It's just a simple statement of fact.

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