Dec 212014
 

Comments and thoughts on the “Doll” Documentary” by Zohar Wagner

Hi Zohar,

I finally had some time to elaborate on your comments.

My words might trigger pain in you, but pain is the way to our truth and avoiding pain causes blockage, because without our truth, true liberation is not possible. The old cliché “the truth will set you free” is very true; our truth will set us free, but first will make us miserable.
I went over your story again and I did not finish reading it again, because during my career as a topless dancer I listened and witness to your story many times over and is nothing new to me and knew at the end you are still stuck in your story and there is no true resolution and liberation and sadly now there is also an innocent little child in your emotional prison with you. Unfortunately most dancers make exactly the same mistakes you did and hurt themselves and the men, because they mutually exploited each other, men trying to exploit them sexually and the dancers try to get as much money out of them as they possible could and they did not have boundaries and limits in what they did in order to get to the men’s money, so they were each other’s victims. I look back in my career as a topless dancer and I am proud of myself that I made my money dancing and dancing only and did not ever let men touch me in a way that was not respectable to me, not matter how much money they offered me, they use to tell me: everyone has a price. and I always answered: I don’t have a price, I only sale dances, they are $10 a dance, and that is all I sale, if they wanted to tip me more they could, but I did not expect more or try to get more money out of them, I treated them like human beings that were in the same boat as me and men respected me and admire me and the other dancers looked up to me also. Today I would not recommend any woman to become a topless dancer, because today things have changed and the dancers are expected to dance right on the patrons’ lap and touching is allowed, something I would never be comfortable with and when these changes started to happening at the club where I was dancing  at, that’s when I started having problems with dancing, because I sure did not want strangers touching me and that’s when I got out of dancing, because every day became harder and harder for me to enforce my rules of not touching and it stopped being fun. I especially would not recommend dancing nude, dancing nude for me was always out of the question, but dancing overall for me was a positive experience and an aid to my liberation.
Men sometimes were so shocked by my honesty and genuineness that they used to ask me too, all the time: what a nice girl like you doing in a topless bar? You sound more like a nun that belongs in a convent and I use to tell them jokingly, because I don’t really believe in god, I believe in love, but not in god: I am working undercover for God!
Topless dancing/stripping is an art form and like all art is a symbolic language trying to express something that needs to be understood. Judging and rejecting this art form of expression, we will never come to discover the meaning of this symbolic expression. All art form is trying to communicate in a symbolic language the unresolved traumas that have been repressed when we did not have a vocabulary to give a voice to it, that be through painting, writing, dancing, etc. so no dancing/stripping in itself is not problematic in our society, but all forms of child abuse are, exploiting and using children to satisfy the needs of parents and adults that’s what is problematic in our society and the roots of all evil. We could also say that Michael Jackson art form was bad because it contributed to his premature death, but we are not telling people that being a song writer, dancer and a singer is bad and people should not get into this type of art form, because others can exploit you and contribute to a premature death. When I was a dancer I use to tell the other dancers: if what you are doing does not hurt you or others then go ahead and do it, but if hurts you or others in any way, it’s not worth it doing it, you might be able to make extra money in the short term, but in the long term you will lose.
Some people have some extreme repressed unresolved childhood traumas and men and women that use this art form that be performers or spectators are no different from other people that choose to use a different art form, but because childhood traumas cannot ever be resolved in a symbolic way, but only by facing and feeling in the right context the repressed emotions of the child we once were as they are triggered by present events. These words by Alice Miller came to mind: “It is a great mistake to imagine that one can resolve traumas in a symbolic fashion. If that were possible, poets, painters, and other artists would be able to resolve their pain through creativity. This is not the case, however. Creativity helps us channel the pain of trauma into symbolic acts; it doesn’t help us resolve it. If symbolic revenge for maltreat­ment received in childhood were effective, then dictators would eventually stop humiliating and torturing their fel­low human beings. As long as they choose to deceive them­selves about who really deserves their hatred, however, and as long as they go on feeding that hatred in symbolic form instead of experiencing and resolving it within the context of their own childhood, their hunger for revenge will remain insatiable (see Miller 1990a).”

Art can be used as an aid to help understand ourselves, but when people use art, any type of art form to exploit or manipulate others, it becomes destructive. I saw many dancers self-destruct quick, because they tried to exploit the men out of their money and heard them brag how much money they had gotten out of just one man, and of course men also tried to exploit the dancers as much they could, a very dangerous game that I refused to play, because I knew, I would lose in the end and I am very proud I made my money without exploiting the men and letting men exploit me. The men knew they could only have me in their fantasies, but not in reality and I never thought of sex while dancing, well maybe once, when I first met my boyfriend of ten years, but that’s because I was very attracted to him and that would had happen, no matter where I met the man I would fall in love with, when I was dancing, I was just working, not thinking of sex and I think most men I danced for they were not thinking of sex either, but trying to talk to me, because I don’t know why people always want to talk to me and are fascinated by me, maybe because I am so real. At my really job right now where I am fully clothed, I know some men have fantasies about me and probably think about having sex with me, but that does not make me a prostitute because of men thinking about having sex with me. I have no control over people’s thoughts and fantasies. I take it as a complement if men or even women fantasize about having sex with me, I just don’t want to know about their fantasies with me.
Sylvie: I agree with Amber Hage-Ali. I did not read the whole thing, because I got bored of reading all her projections of her issues with dancing, stripping and sexuality. Just because she has issues with it, does not mean others can handle it well and be actually a tool to help them free themselves from the lies and hypocrisy of society. Everything we experience in life can aid a person to liberation or get them deeper in their vicious cycles, it depends on the person. And it looks like it from reading her article she went deeper in her vicious cycle, become more unconscious and emotionally blind from her experience as a dancer/stripper. If you doing something and you are having fun while doing it and are you at peace with it, it’s not prostitution, but if only doing it to for money than you are prostituting yourself, so if she is doing this documentary just thinking of the money it can make her than she is prostituting herself right now. Comparing dancing to prostituting is BS because you thinking of sex and the only thing is missing is penetration, so if I walk down street and I find a guy really sexy and I think about having sex with him or vise verse then I am being a prostitute, because the only thing missing is penetration, whatever!
Sylvie: What I am getting from her article is that her experience as a dancer/stripper triggered guilty feelings in her, but dancing/stripping was just the trigger of her guilt not the cause and now unconsciously and in a very sophisticated way she is projecting and transferring her guilty feelings into other women that still are dancing/stripping for a living, but unless she gets to the real cause of her guilty feelings this will be just a superficial and temporary fix, because our painful feelings cannot ever be resolved by projection and transference, they only can be resolved by getting to the root of our painful feelings. She is using her sexuality right now with her sexy picture to get attention to her article, which is totally fine with me, we all constantly use our sexuality to sale things and is a fact that sexy and good looking people usually make more money in their field. I just wish she was using her sexuality to enlightening others and not to unconsciously transfer her guilt into others.
Sylvie: She says she was pregnant and had a child and if she does not really resolve these guilt feelings in the right context and keeps blaming present triggers, sadly she will transfer unconsciously also into her child her guilt feelings and will go on endless…
Zohar Wagner: hi girls I am Zohar Wagner the director of “DOLL”, and yes stripping is prostitution! And I don’t feel guilty at all, I just want to warn other girls and help them enjoy sexuality in better ways than striiping infront of strangers who dont appreciatet you at all. Amber, you’re right it’s not as black and white as wrong or right. I’m not against taking away women’s choice, but assigning women’s choice to the sex industry is problematic. The sex industry is run by men for men (mostly) and “there is no universal experience for strippers, each one enters into the workforce for a different reason and has a different experience” Can you really deny that the reason for entering this world is because of men exploitation?
Sylvie: Just because you say dancing/stripping is prostitution, does not make it so. I just prove to you that a dancer is not a prostitute, just because you and most dancers prostitute themselves while dancing, it does not mean all do, maybe I am one in a million, but I feel I am not just on in a million while I was dancing, but I feel am one in a million in general, because I can see in depths that most people in our society cannot. We live in emotionally blind society and people are prostituting themselves in all professions not just dancers, hurting themselves and others. Prostitution is only when you do something you don’t want to do, but you do it for the money and money only. You did things you did not want to do while stripping and you felt like a prostitute and feel guilty and bad about it and your denials does not change reality that you are like it or not transferring your bad feelings into others. Women that marry for money and money only are prostitutes too, but they only prostitute themselves with one man, but still a prostitute nevertheless. I worked for 18 years as topless dancer and not once I did something I did not want to do. I was in total control and I had my limits. I had fun while doing it and made good money at it and the day I stopped having fun dancing that was the day I got out. I never once I felt I was a prostitute, if you did things you did not want to do while you danced. You were a prostitute. But please stop projecting yourself into other dancers. We can be honest with ourselves and others in any profession and we only get exploited if we allow others to exploit us. I am having a feeling you are prostituting yourself with this documentary, because you are thinking of the money and money only that it can make you. I hate to burst your illusion, but if you think you are helping others by unconsciously and compulsively transferring your bad feelings about what you did in the past is not helping anyone not even yourself.
“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and gives you fodder for films … but, hey, some people enjoy complaining.”
Sylvie: Actually what doesn’t kill you makes you weaker and it’s obvious the author’s experience made her weaker and now she is transferring unconsciously her bad feelings into others like all weak people do.

Zohar: Sylvie I value your opinion, it’s just how I view this subject from my own personal experience, I’d love to discuss this with you and show you another side of stripping that might change your mind, this is one of my goals of making this movie to change conceptions. The movie also explores issues such as rape and sexual abuse, as a rape victim it is my intention to try and educate other young women that stripping is anything but “choice” and no I don’t feel bad or ashamed about my past Sylvie, this is something many men and my raper tried to convince others, I must admit it’s overwhelming reading your comments, but again I hope I’ll be able to change some of your views.
Sylvie: they are emotionally wounded people in all professions and dancers too, some are more damaged than others, and the ones that allow men to do things to them they don’t want to and let themselves be exploited are a symptom of being exploited as small children by the people that were supposed to be their protectors, usually their parents and until they face and heal these old wounds they will be in an exploitive relationships where they exploit others or allow others to exploit them, no matter where they are, that, be in dancing/stripping or a lawyer, doctor or film maker, etc. You say you don’t have bad feelings about stripping, but your denials will not heal these painful feelings, if they were not in you, you would not be unconsciously and compulsively projecting them outward with your documentary, but it will be just a temporary and superficial fix and you have proven of it right now by the fact that my posts are triggering overwhelming feelings in you. Stripping was not the cause of your painful feelings just like my posts are not the cause of your overwhelming feelings, but only the triggers and you can use these opportunities to face those old repressed feelings or unconsciously and compulsively reenacting exploitive relationships where you are projecting yourself into others or let others project themselves into you and sadly if you don’t resolve these painful feelings, but keep repressing them with the aid of literature or whatever you find appealing to distract yourself from feeling your painful feelings in the context of your childhood traumas, you will unconsciously and compulsively transfer your unresolved painful feelings into your innocent child that absolutely has nothing to do with it. Most parents desire to have children come from their unconscious needs to have an available object to project themselves into.
Zohar: Stripping wasn’t the cause of my “painful feelings” Rape by my gynecologist at age 15 was the real cause. Sylvie, I understand now from your first comment that you got bored from my projections, reading the whole article, and I apologize. But yes, those are my own projections which you seem so fiercely object to. But maybe reading the whole article and watching the movie will bring us to a much more productive discussion on sexual abuse, stripping, rape and what is really free will and what is just plain old exploitation. I’ll be happy to update you with online screening I’m about to launch and to have a live debate with you, my goal is to always try and better understand each other more.
Sylvie: Zohar, reading your last post it brought tears to my eyes because I could feel your raw pain and I am so sorry your gynecologist forced himself into you when he should have been helping you and instead harmed you, which, proves they are abusers in all fields, not just in adult entertaining clubs and from my experience all abusers love the “helping professions” but I would go even deeper, because usually we fall into abusive situations because of earlier abuse as a baby and as small child when we did not have a vocabulary to give a voice to it and the gynecologist was already a reenactment of your trauma at the hands of your parents or others caregivers, if we don’t have the repressed emotions of the child we once were blinding us and when we come in to contact with an abuser our senses will alert us of the dangers to get away in time. Obviously because of these earlier accumulated unresolved traumas in your life, you were not able to keep healthy boundaries and limits to protect yourself as a dancer, but until these earlier traumas are really resolved no matter where you are, you are going to be in exploitive relationships, where you unconsciously and compulsively exploiting others ore others exploit you, as long the repressed emotions to the traumas you suffered as a small child remain repressed the compulsion to repeat will continue in one form or another and there is no escape no matter where you are. In her book: The Drama of the Gifted Child” Alice Miller says: “If the repression stays unresolved, the parents’ childhood tragedy is unconsciously continued on in their children”
Also these words by Alice Miller come to mind: “Abuse means to me using a person for whatever I want from her, him, without asking for their agreement, without respecting their will and their interests. With children, it is very easy to do so, because they are loving, they trust their parents and most adults, and they don’t realize that they were abused, that their love had been exploited. Especially if they were forced to ignore their emotions from the beginning, they might have lost their sensibility for the warning signals. A small girl will follow to the cellar the neighbour who promised her chocolate, although she may feel uncomfortable. But if she learned from the beginning of her life that her feelings didn’t matter and that she should obey every adult person, even if she feels resistance, she will follow the neighbour. She will behave like the Little Red Riding-Hood in the fairytale. And she may later suffer in her relationship with men for her whole life if she didn’t work out this early experience in the cellar. However, if she does, she will no longer be in danger of becoming a victim of rape or any other kind of molestation.” Alice Miller “Free from Lies” page 234
I wish you courage and strength in resolving the repressed painful emotions relating to your earlier traumas, so the tragedy of your childhood is not repeated with your child.
 Zohar: Thank you Sylvie, I appreciate your comment.
Sylvie: Hi Zohar, I don’t have time to write at the moment, but I just like to let you know really quickly that I will be happy to have a live debate with you. As soon I have time to write I want to elaborate more on your yesterday’s comment. I also like to congratulate you really quick on your courage to owning up to your projections and your apology is accepted. When people still have unresolved traumas projection is unavoidable and transference is not easy to handle and I too apologize, if I was a little too harsh giving you back your projections, but now is a great opportunity for you to resolve these painful feelings from old wounds in the right context and be free at last and not unconsciously and compulsively passing these painful feelings down into your child the next generation. The article by Alice Miller in the link below explains the mechanisms of transference.

P L: I didn’t read all of it either but personally I think all men who buy attention are losers and if women wanna sell it it’s up to them. I don’t like ‘feminist’ articles about the evils of prostitution – it’s up to the woman what she does. Also I don’t like women who used to work as prostitutes and are now writing about how prostitution hurt them. They always seem to go on some saviour mission and wanna save all the other women from themselves by trying to pass weird laws etc that will prob hurt prostitutes more than prostitution ever could. I’m not being funny but all pop stars and actresses sell sex even models just about everyone sells sex it’s just obvious to everyone that sex sells – marketing companies just about everyone uses sex. And yes if the woman has boundaries then she won’t get hurt cos she won’t let anyone hurt her. Of course nobody can stop rape assault etc but that could happen anyway even if u work in a bank or at school not just if ur a prostitute. It’s a bit like domestic violence – it wasn’t my fault my ex husband hurt me I was a victim but I was lacking the essential skills to even understand what was going on at first and then to get myself out of the situation but now I can honestly say that no man would ever dare hit me – I can recognise warning signs early on like controlling behaviour etc so even if the man was gonna hit me eventually I never let him stay with me for that long cos I realise in time what he’s like. It’s the same with selling sex in any form I believe – rihanna won’t have her manager raping her in order to release her records first – she’s in control – and as long as a woman decides to fuck men for money as long as she’s in control good for her – if she’s a stripper or whatever and has boundaries then she’ll enforce them and good for her. If a woman doesn’t have boundaries then these jokes ie men will sense it like animals sense blood and pounce. I think it’s very noble of u to respect these men Sylvie but personally I think they should get a girlfriend and if they can’t and have to pay for anything I’ve no respect for them- why should I – they can’t even get sex or company for free from someone who will enjoy it too. I could prob only respect men who need ‘a date’ for a meeting or a wedding or something and pay the woman just for company and nothing else and don’t expect anything else. Maybe I’m projecting onto these men but I think they are vile. ‘Full service’ ie sex is about £120 in london. Funny enough that’s exactly what annual servicing of ur car is called too – full service – and that’s more like £200 so these nasty horrible sad useless men expect to buy a woman for less than they get their car serviced for. I think those men are dumb pigs and if a woman decides to exploit their stupidness but makes sure she’s in control and enforces her boundaries than I don’t see a problem with that. Besides it’s not about sex or company it’s about control same as rape is and I’m sure women who pay for sex are just as vile and dumb and again they not paying cos they horny and need to cum I think they just wanna pay for being in control. Anyway that’s what I think. What also amazes me is how some men will pay thousands just to see a pop star and will feel ecstatic if she just looks in their direction but expect a prostitute or a dancer to do nasty stuff for like £10 I think crackheads sell themselves for in the street- it’s like some people are worth more to them than others nasty pigs lol

 Posted by at 9:23 pm  Comments Off on Comments and Thoughts on the Doll Documentary by Zohar Wagner
Dec 212014
 

People Unlimited, Inc. My experience with an Arizona cult

When I posted the blog, letter to XA, I recognize now that I was suffering a little bit from Stockholm Syndrome, and so I kept everyone anonymous when I shared my experiences with this cult as a guest, for about 4 months, in order to protect them. Even though I saw them very clear from the beginning, they were also very charming and entertaining. I liked them and at first I said to myself: this group believes in physical immortality and wants to live forever! What’s wrong with that, nothing, right? Well plenty! When it’s used to control people to make them believe that in order to be physically immortal they have to join their group and then be scared into believing that if they leave the group, they will die.

I will continue to keep individual names anonymous by only using their initials. I will however reveal the name of this charming cult, based here in Scottsdale, Arizona, to warn people of the dangers of joining a cult. This cult works hard at deceiving people, consciously or unconsciously, using deceptive tactics, such as brain washing and mind controlling techniques in order to regress people to the wounded child that they once were. Then, by keeping them stuck there, they can exploit, manipulate, and use them.

JB: You are so far out on limb that I’m sure you’re not interested in what I say and feel. If you were, you would have never deluded yourself to this extent.

Sylvie: I love being out on the limb! I have a better view from there!
I respect you more than you can ever imagine and I do care about how you feel. But it’s your true feelings that you have been so disconnected from for so long, that it would take years for you to get in touch with and discern what feelings and thoughts belong to whom, because they have been immersed with others for so many years.
I am glad this charade is over and I don’t have to pretend not to see what I really see — THE EMPEROR IS NAKED! I have learned that people are what they say they are not, because most people live in denial of who they really are. You all say that People Unlimited Inc is not a religion. But if I dissect it, that’s EXACTLY what it, is, with its brand new pretty, seductive, and attractive beliefs, plus, the brand new very alluring label. You see most religions believe in a god that no one can prove. People that believe in god say they feel it and some even proclaim god talks to them. People Unlimited Inc believes in physical immortality and they say it’s a feeling in the body too. Nobody has ever lived forever, and no one can prove it’s possible either. So it’s just a belief, just like believing in god, very much like most religions. Based on beliefs, like most religions, CB quotes the bible also to provide evidence that what you are saying is true.
I don’t have beliefs anymore. There are things I know and there are things I don’t know. When we know instead of believing we will find the courage to be true to ourselves. Beliefs are passed down to us so they should be received with doubt. To know comes from within.
Every person I’ve encounter on this planet so far suffers from some type of denial and People Unlimited Inc suffers from the ultimate denial — Denial of Death! Today I have more vitality than ever before and I am more immortal and alive than anyone at People Unlimited Inc. Will I feel this way forever? I don’t know and I am not worried about it. I am just going to enjoy this feeling for as long as I can hang on to it.
You are the one that joined a cult. If someone is deluded here, it has to be you. I understand that you were very young, in a war zone at the time. I cannot image what that was like, being in a war zone hearing bombs. I hope I never know what that is like. You were a very vulnerable young guy trying to figure out your path in life when these very charismatic people, with their very seductive beliefs and alluring label, captivated you and now it must be very painful to have to face and feel that you have wasted 20 years of your life with this illusion. It’s starting to take an affect on your body and could bring you premature death. How ironic that death is what you are all trying to avoid. Nothing can affect our mental and physical health more than believing in lies and illusions.

JB: I can assure you that my life is entirely of my own making and I am very pleased with the achievement thus far. More so now than ever.

Sylvie: I know this is painful and hard to hear, but joining a cult and getting involved intimately with the cult leader that is 30 years older than you, older than your mother (by just a few months), but still older than your mother and allowing her to control and manipulate you, no matter how fun, seductive, and charismatic the leaders are, is not an achievement to be proud of.
If what you are saying is true, you would not be upset by my observations. When people tell me things about myself that are not true and I am sure in my heart that I am right, I just smile and say: Really?

JB: My health is increasing every day and on a deeper level of the body than you can possibly be aware of. I think you are too insecure to be anything but the “teacher” and so you just teach, teach, teach even when there is something huge for you to learn. In fact, the more insecure you feel, the more you act as “teacher.”

Sylvie: I hope your health is better and you are feeling better and better.
Your words above are pure projections — who are the teachers/preachers, really? Who preaches/teaches, preaches/teaches, and preaches/teaches in front of a congregation? I think the more insecure you all become, the more you all preach/teach and refuse to look at reality and the facts. Children that are preached to, learn how to preach and that is exactly what BB is doing. She came from a family of preachers and she learned her childhood lesson very well. Her son, KB has also learned that lesson very well. The only thing that has changed was the beliefs and the brand new seductive label. Everything you had written in the last e-mail is just pure projections and transferences of disowned feelings that you and BB can’t admit to. The more insecure you all feel, the more dependent you all become on your congregation that play the role of the “good child” so you can use them to project your disowned feelings and insecurities.
JB: There’s a saying – a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. And you’ve got it.
Sylvie:  I might have little knowledge, but I acquired the right knowledge! It’s not the quantity that matters, but the quality. A lot of people acquire what I call empty knowledge that only serves to impress, control, and to manipulate people, but has no real value whatsoever and what’s really sad is that most people carry poisonous pedagogy and go around infecting everyone with it. So again, whose knowledge is dangerous? You guys are the ones using your knowledge with disconnected truths or lies coated with little bits of disconnected truths to control and manipulate the followers of People Unlimited Inc, so they stay dependent or stuck in the role of the child.

JB: From emails you’ve sent me I know you give this same treatment to many people, so I am not different in that. You have the same story for everyone and that is control plain and simple.

Sylvie: Most people I write to don’t share your opinion. Look deeper and see who is being controlling and controlled. I just dared to say that the EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES ON. I share what I see and feel and you can agree or disagree. If you could seen it too, that, THE EMPEROR IS NAKED, that would have been great for your health and liberation. But if you don’t see it, then you are going to suffer the consequences of being emotionally blind. What you do with the information I gave you is your business. You can choose to reflect on it or discard it. The choice is yours.
The fears you all feel are the internalized fears of the children you once were, of parents’ punishments, and you are projecting them on me, because I triggered them. I however am not the cause of your fears and anger. I am just the trigger, because I spoke of the things you don’t want to, or are not ready to look at, because they are to scary and painful to admit, face, and feel. If you keep projecting these fears and this anger onto scapegoats, it will never get resolved. Only when we understand the roots of our fears, anger, and pain, does it get resolved. It starts to diminish and eventually leaves our body completely and can never be triggered by anyone no matter what, because it’s not inside our bodies anymore to be triggered again and again. We will have no more buttons in us to be pushed, certain presents events might still remind us of past trauma, but will no longer through us off base by regressing us to the wounded child we once were and we remain the adult we are now and deal with the present situation in a lucid  manner.
You all say it’s good to stir people up and push their buttons. You love to use this slogan, “Face everything and avoid nothing.” I felt this was just a slogan to manipulate the followers of People Unlimited Inc. It did fool me for a little while, but I was conscious that it could be just a slogan like the slogans politicians use to get our votes. Now I have conformation on it, because when someone comes along and stirs you guys up and pushes your buttons and puts some facts and realities in front of you, you guys don’t like it and you get defensive. Behaviors like this, what do they call them? Oh yes, it’s called hypocrisy. Also you guys say that we have to get the ego out of the way. The leaders try to break the followers’ ego, so they can control them. But the ego can be a good thing to have, because it protects us from being exploited by others — and again, who has the biggest ego in People Unlimited Inc, if not the leaders.

JB: Your sisters have made more of an impression on you than you admit.

Sylvie: I have dealt with my internalized sisters and there might be residue left. If it does come to the surface I recognize it right away and now know how to handle it. Until today my ex was the only person that triggered my internalized older sisters and he was the only one I reenacted them with. Now I am very conscious of my internalized older sisters and I will be very careful not to reenact them again with anyone else. Now let’s look at you. Aren’t you reenacting your internalized mother by lashing out at anyone that questions your beliefs — just like your mother did to you when you used to question her?
JB: Without invitation, you saw me in the hospital at my most vulnerable. You’ve abused that intimacy by judging me according to your own narrow agenda. You say you care, but your caring is twisted with judgment. And your judgment is ignorant and banal.

Sylvie: I am sorry if you felt violated by me stopping at the hospital to see you. I thought we were friends. Now it’s very clear to me that if I don’t become a member of People Unlimited Inc I will be treated like an outsider. This is one of the reasons why this cult can be dangerous. It tries to control and manipulate the members contact to the outside world. While everyone thought I might become a member, I was treated very nicely, but in the moment I said I could not become a member I was then treated like I was a bad person, as if everyone in the outside world is bad. When we are not emotionally blind, it’s very easy to see where everyone is at, at any given moment and no one can fool us anymore.
I saw your situation very clearly so I was very aware of the risk I was taking by hiring you to help me on this project. You are a talented writer and I hope one day you use your talent for truth instead of using it to deceive yourself and others.
Also, you are the one judging me to your narrow agenda. So who is twisted with judgment? And whose judgment is ignorant and banal? I understand your situation and it is sad seeing you falling victim to illusions.

JB: You’ve taken me lightly. You’ve missed me completely. You’ve dismissed my own expression as if it means nothing compared to your little corner of knowledge.
Sylvie: I see you clearly and I understand why it’s so hard for you to acknowledge the truths I am talking about. You are the one taking yourself lightly. If someone is missing something, it’s you missing yourself completely and that is what’s really sad. If we don’t miss ourselves, it does not matter if others miss us or not. So if I missed you, it would not have mattered, if you were not missing yourself.
Again, try to look a little deeper and see who really is dismissing you. Your body has been screaming at you to pay attention and you are ignoring its signals and refusing to explore the real causes of your pain. If someone is dismissing someone, it is you dismissing yourself. You are the one dismissing your own body’s expression as if it means nothing compared to your little corner of your intellectual knowledge.

JB: But you can’t dismiss this: I don’t associate with people who don’t respect me and my life. I know you have problems in your life and that you are trying to work them out by working on other people. But nothing excuses the lack of respect you show me.
Sylvie: Again, let’s look a little deeper to see who doesn’t respect themselves. When I debated to become a member (I can’t believe I even debated it, thinking maybe I could be of help to the People Unlimited Inc. members), I came to my senses and realized that becoming a member would jeopardize my achieved autonomy. I am not willing to give up my autonomy now to anyone.
In my last meeting with BB, she insinuated that if I became a member and I liked JB, she was willing to give him up and let me have him if I wanted him. So who would sell you just to acquire one more member? Again, who is disrespecting who?
I don’t get tempted or distracted by attractions anymore. I am very aware what that can mean — repetition of the past and I don’t go there anymore. My path is forward and I’m not going to repeat the past. No matter how seductive and alluring the new label may be, she can have you all for herself. You are a very talented and attractive guy, but I am not about to become a member of a cult so I can be with an attractive guy that has a talent I wish I had. I did crazy stuff like that with my ex and I am not repeating crazy stuff like that ever again. I did a lot of emotional work and I finally broke free from the emotional prison I was born into. I am not going to give up the freedom I achieved and join a cult for anyone.
And also, who is guiding and counseling a congregation? If anyone is working on others without solving their problems first, it’s you. I also don’t get involved intimately with people that unconsciously or consciously choose to believe in lies and illusions no matter how seductive, charismatic, attractive, and talented they are.

JB: I will complete the section of the project I’m working on that you’ve paid for and that is it. I’ll send it to you and arrange to return to you the materials of yours I’ve got. That will be the end of it. You always worried about this process getting interrupted and now you have created it. The sabotage is yours.

Sylvie: Again, the only life that is being sabotaged here is yours. I know without a doubt that I am on the right path and this, for me, is just a bump in the road. This project will get done with or without your help; it will just take a little longer. I have made a lot of money and lost a lot of it and I have learned the money lesson and I am grateful. I made a lot of money so I could pay for the very expensive money lesson and now I am totally detached when it comes to money. I know I can always make more. Don’t bother finishing the last pages, because I know your heart is not in it and I don’t want anyone to work for me unless their heart is in it. Keep whatever money is left as a gift and just send whatever you have done along with the notes I have sent you. I also felt you found my website and thought I was still the wounded child I talked about in my story and that you all could use, exploit, and manipulate like a puppet — and that is why you contacted me. That was a HUGE MISTAKE, because I am probably one of the very few people you will ever meet that has truthfully dealt with her repression and for that reason, I am no longer in the victim/child role for the unconsciously repressed people in power positions to use and to project and transfer their disowned feelings and insecurities onto, no matter how charismatic and beautiful there are. I now have proven that my feelings and perceptions were correct. You guys are not safe to be involved with at the intimate level. I made the right decision in not becoming a member of People Unlimited Inc. Wishing you much courage and strength to face and feel your painful truths and if you ever need someone to talk to, I will be forever available. Sylvie

JB: As you wish . . . Here are the notes for the last three sections of the project. If you will provide your work address, I will drop the books and letters off there.
Sylvie: Thank you JB, don’t worry about the books. You are welcome to keep them, maybe one day you all find the courage to read them and help you all deal with your repression and become a true enlightened witness to yourself and everyone that comes through People Unlimited Inc and help you all become more real and not so afraid because when we really deal with our repression and become real, there is nothing to fear.  Just send the letters to my P. O. Box I am not in the business of hurting people, but helping people become real and free in the kindest way I possibly can. I am not perfect, just like no one is on this planet and I know sometimes I can be brutally honest, I am accused of that all the time and I apologize for that, but I feel the truth is the best gift we can give to anyone and we must have the courage to speak it, even at the risk of triggering people’s fears, anger and pain and projecting it into me and blaming me for it. Michael Jackson might still be here with us today if he had someone in his life with courage to speak the truth to him. This situation showed me that I am becoming a lot better at handling other people’s transference.

Sylvie: Last night I dreamed about you and BB! I dreamed I stopped by your house for a visit! I wish we did not have so many differences between us and we all could spent time together, but for now that’s the way it is. I know in spite of our differences, you all are good people and maybe someday our differences will be dissolved. I hope you are feeling all better, but I still worry about your health and well being, because I feel that there are things you need to see in your life and make a few adjustments in your personal life that until you do that your back and health is going to continue to suffer, you have been carrying an emotional load that does not belong to you for tooooooooo many years and that’s why your back is suffering and until you let go of this emotional load and give it back to the right person your health and back will keep getting aggravated, but because your loyalty you are not completely being true to yourself and when we are not true to ourselves our health suffers. When I read Norman’s and Alice Miller’s words below you come to my mind.

Saying the truth or being loyal

Dear Alice Miller, feel free to publish this letter in your website, if you find it interesting.
In your post “Barbara’s Forum 2”, you write that instead of understanding you received personal attacks. I am sorry to hear that, because I was personally attacked as well. Like you, I was attacked after I criticized IFS therapy (in my forum). Why did I have to be attacked? Because I expressed disagreement with a person I was supposed to be “loyal” to?
Criticism is important when we work to find the truth; sometimes, this truth is more important to me than “loyalty”. It is not possible to have one’s own opinion and to say that everyone is right at the same time. There is a difference between the truth and lies, and you have shown in numerous examples that the body also knows it. No postmodern philosophy or eclectic naivete can change this basic fact of life. The truth is not always easy to accept, of course. It is often painful and unwelcome. Besides, it makes us mad when someone else points a finger and says “you’re wrong”. But what if he is correct?
You were attacked personally because you “dared” to criticize and to break your “loyalty” in order not to betray yourself and your convictions. Some people obviously thought that this was reason enough to try and punish you. To me it was familiar, because this is what my mother did whenever I dared to question her versions of the truth: to punish me, to try belittling me.
This was the dictatorship I grew up in, like so many other readers, I am sure. Certainly, this is how my persecutors’ mothers had done to them in childhood: punished them for criticism. What other reason can there be for their behavior? Seemingly free from their mothers, they fight their scapegoats in the name of freedom. They were taught that to criticize is a crime against humanity, and that they have to always smile with agreement, unless they are treated with the most brutal sadism possible. They were told to keep their opinions to themselves because it is rude to disagree. Such people’s rage is understandable. Every child needs her parents to appreciate and listen to her opinions. What is less acceptable is their behavior and hypocrisy as adults. N.
AM: I agree with you. Fortunate are the few children who can express their criticism, who are listened to, taken seriously and understood by their parents. They receive a precious gift for their whole life. But for most of children saying the truth meant mortal danger. They are often brutally punished simply for saying frankly what they feel and think. As adults they often use the same means as their parents used before, without being aware of what they are doing. They are blindly attacking everybody who questions their traditional “opinions” given by their parents. Their children can’t do anything else than to obey and staying loyal. Only adults can take legal actions if it comes to criminal harassment or severe defamation.

JB: Sylvie – I am feeling better every day and I’m very happy about it. You’re speaking in code here and you’re not being clear about what you are getting at. But I honestly don’t think you’ve gone to the depth to understand me or what I have been through. To be very frank with you, your worry feels a lot like control. I am not controllable, so you might as well give it up. I’m hopeful you can reflect on yourself and get what I mean about being controlling, because it will free you in ways that would be wonderful for you. I can tell you that for me this control is totally boring and dead. My not responding to it is the best encouragement I can give you to let go.
Best, JB

Sylvie: Hi JB, I am glad to hear you are feeling better every day. Thank you for writing and expressing your feelings. I understand your feelings and where they coming from, even though those feelings are being misdirected, in order to protect a person you love in your life, seeing the people we love in our lives clearly, does not mean we love them less, to the contrary we can be more helpful to them and ourselves. You have been controlled and manipulated for many years and your anger is justified, but directing it at the wrong person does not get resolved and this has been the main reason you have back problems and I am pretty sure if you had seen this earlier and taking this person off your back your back would have healed without surgery. I have been trying to help you see it, because that would help your overall health and in the process free you to be able to write my project effortlessly and the fact that you cannot see yourself and the people in your life clearly it might affect  my project, time will tell, I am totally detached and whatever happens, happens, but of course I would like you to take this job to the end, because you are a very talented writer and I can only image how high you could fly if you could break free. If you don’t want to deal with me and the material of my project please be honest with me and let me know and just finish the last paid pages and we will be done and you will not have to deal with me anymore. The fact that I cannot express myself freely with you, it is becoming very uncomfortable and I am getting tired of tiptoeing in egg shells.  I understand you are not ready to see certain things in your life and I will give up trying and let it go, and I apologize for even trying. I know I cannot make someone see that don’t want to or are not ready to see, because me trying to force someone to see that would be reenacting my childhood drama all over again, so I will let it go. But please know if you ever ready and need someone to talk to I am available forever. Sylvie

JB: Sylvie – speak plainly. Who are you saying is the person manipulating me?

Sylvie: JB, I wish you could figure it out for yourself and I know it’s hard, painful for you to see that you are repeating, reenacting your childhood drama, the first manipulative person in your life was your mother and you freed yourself from her, but you found the mother of manipulation, a more sophisticated, smarter, charming and manipulative person to take over where your mother left off and your childhood drama continues, but now with brand new seductive label. I am not going to mention her name because I like her too, but if you don’t get this person of your back your health will continue to suffer. If you could take a vacation alone, maybe visit your family for awhile and spend as much time alone as possible to be with your true feelings and thoughts without the interference of others feelings and thoughts, it might help you see for yourself and sort it all out, so you can see what feelings and thoughts are truthful yours, because when we are in the middle of things it’s hard to see the roles everyone is playing and what feelings belong to whom. Of course this is just a suggestion. And I can’t be more bluntly then this. Wishing much courage to see yourself and others clearly, Sylvie

Subject: Received Letters — Thank you    SAT, 10-31-10 8:59 AM

If you ever gather the courage to see and feel the painful truths behind the beautiful veil of People Unlimited Inc. You have a friend here forever that really understands. You know how to find me.
Best, sylvie

JB: I’m sorry you feel that way, Sylvie. You are so far out on limb that I’m sure you’re not interested in what I say and feel. If you were, you would have never deluded yourself to this extent. I can assure you that my life is entirely of my own making and I am very pleased with the achievement thus far. More so now than ever. My health is increasing every day and on a deeper level of the body than you can possibly be aware of. I think you are too insecure to be anything but the “teacher” and so you just teach, teach, teach even when there is something huge for you to learn. In fact, the more insecure you feel, the more you act as “teacher.” There’s a saying – a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. And you’ve got it. From emails you’ve sent me I know you give this same treatment to many people, so I am not different in that. You have the same story for everyone and that is control plain and simple. Your sisters have made more of an impression on you than you admit.  Without invitation, you saw me in the hospital at my most vulnerable. You’ve abused that intimacy by judging me according to your own narrow agenda. You say you care, but your caring is twisted with judgment. And your judgment is ignorant and banal. You’ve taken me lightly. You’ve missed me completely. You’ve dismissed my own expression as if it means nothing compared to your little corner of knowledge. But you can’t dismiss this: I don’t associate with people who don’t respect me and my life. I know you have problems in your life and that you are trying to work them out by working on other people. But nothing excuses the lack of respect you show me. I will complete the section of the project I’m working on that you’ve paid for and that is it. I’ll send it to you and arrange to return to you the materials of yours I’ve got. That will be the end of it. You always worried about this process of writing your project getting interrupted and now you have created it. The sabotage is yours.  JB

JB “s past e-mails
Sent: Thursday, February 18, 2010 10:19 AM
Hi JB, I was pleased with our meeting yesterday! And I am looking forward to go with you on Friday to People Unlimited Inc, but I have to be honest with you that I am a little skeptical! I went to the website and I like a lot of the staff I read, especially how our beliefs is what gets us into trouble. I tell people that I don’t have beliefs anymore! There are things I know and there are things that I don’t know! When we know instead of believing, we will have the courage to be true to ourselves. Beliefs are passed down to us, so they should be received with doubt! Of course, now, that I am living my real life, I would love to prolong it for a very long time! But forever! I don’t know if such thing is possible! I usually say: the first 20 years of our lives, our family screw us up and the second twenty years of our lives we unconsciously and compulsively keep repeating, recreating, reenacting our childhood drama over and over again… for those of us fortune to have courage to explore and look at the naked true and capable of feeling all of our feelings and repressed emotions, we are able to free ourselves from the vicious circle and if we live until we are 90, we really only get to live 50 years of our  true life!!! See you Friday, Sylvie

RE: Thursday, February 18,2010 10:24 AM

Just after I sent you an email I got yours. Your skepticism is perfectly understandable and I’m glad you’re coming to see for yourself. As you say, we spend a lot of time getting clear of old baggage, so I say the best is yet to come!

From: Sylvie  Sent: Sunday, February 21, 2010 1:26 PM To: JB Subject: Re: I had fun last night!!!

Hi JB, I hope you are having a good weekend. Now that I have gotten a good night sleep and able to reflect on everything; I have a few questions. As I said yesterday I had fun Friday night and enjoyed the singers, dancers and listen to the things they were saying, because I identified with most of it, NOT ALL OF IT! And for sure would love to go back a Friday here and there and spent time with these fun people. As I said to the leaders, it has been a very long journey to get to the place I am now. Now looking back I see clear through the manipulations and able to articulate how I truly feel! I am curious how long exactly you have been with People Unlimited Inc? And how exactly you were feeling at the moment you join the group? Also have you ever taken a break from the group? Like stopping going for long periods of time? And if you have taken a long break from People Unlimited Inc did the old feelings comeback? I hope that you don’t feel I am being intruding, but it’s important that I can have an open honest relationship with the person that is going to help me write my project. I hope you mean the words   “Face everything and avoid nothing.”  I have shared with you that Deepak Chopra is my favorite charlatan because I really enjoy listen to most of what he has to say; I feel people like him that are very articulate and say very seductive words and beautiful things that make us feel good, and keep us numb, just like a drug.  My experience has been the same as Alice Miller’ as she says in her article “The Longest Journey”  “…It has taken me all my life to allow myself to be what I am and to listen to what my inner self is telling me, more and more directly, without waiting for permission from others or currying approval from people symbolizing my parents.”
I am feeling the group People Unlimited Inc could become the substitute parents and wants their followers dependent on them, just like parents/care takers enjoyed controlling, manipulating and having their children dependent on them. The more controlling, manipulative and abusive the families of origin  are the more their children become dependent on them or the more vulnerable they become in adult life to become dependent on charismatic people symbolizing their parents and staying trapped in the type of relationships that one plays the role of parent and others playing the role of the child. Another example is the followers of the secret by James Arthur Ray, he symbolizing their parents/caretakers and the followers “the good children” following his directions without question themselves and two paid the price with their lives for this mistake. Another example is religion; religion the all powerful parent and the followers permanent in the role of a child.  Our goal is to become independent adults, stand on our own two feet without crutches. I am going to share with you in the link below three e-mails I sent to Oprah, I am sure she never read them! But what I said to her gives an example of what I am trying to say here and a blog I posted on facebook about Oprah.

Also read the blog Oprah is more concerned about her image than the truth and facts

Have a good day and talk more later, sylvie Hi Sylvie, yes the weekend was excellent. I thought of you and wished you could have been there. I appreciate you opening your feelings to me about your experience with us at People Unlimited Inc and I want you to always feel free to do that. I’m in a bit of a rush this morning catching up with work, but I’ll be happy to tell you about my own experiences and to talk further. I think it’s important to look at everything so you can see how you really feel about us. We actually talked some about the parent thing this weekend, how each person has to experience being physically immortal for themselves. Yes, we have great people to lead things, but ultimately it’s personal, it comes down to each one of us experiencing who we really are. We are serious about ending death, that means ending all the old structures and manipulations and roles people have played with each other, because those are the boxes that turn into coffins. So we’re about being out of the box all the way! I’m glad you’ll be with us on Friday, because it’s an ongoing unfolding of our lives and you can feel free to open your questions at events as well.
Talk to you soon!

JB From: Sylvie Sent: Tuesday, February 23, 2010 1:55 PM To: JB Subject: RE: I had fun last night!!!

Hi JB, thank you for writing. The part I had a problem with was when BB and JS said: them needing us and we needing the group that we need to have both feet in the group, not one foot in and one foot out and the need to attend all the time. I see that as trying to manipulate people to feel they need the group or vice versa, to achieve the feeling of being a live, immortal; to me, that is a reenacting all over again a dependent relationship, like parent and child, one being in the role of parent (the leaders) and the other being in the role of a child (the followers). I am great example that we can achieve this feeling without being dependent on anyone or group; actually we will never achieve freedom, autonomy if we remain stuck in a dependent relationship. Today I feel immortal!  And I am completely a live! Will I feel this way forever? I don’t know and I am not concerned about it. I achieved this state alone with the help from the books and website of Alice Miller without being dependent on her or her on me, we do need a true enlightened whiteness, but that can be anyone and be in a form of a book, not a specific person or group. Whenever you have extra time read the article “The Essential Role of an Enlightened Witness in Society” in the link below. I will try to share some day in the events as well, but I am not use to talk in front of an audience and will not be easy for me, but I see it as a great opportunity to practice talking in front of an audience. Talk more soon, Sylvie

RE: I had fun last night!!! Thursday, 2-25-10 9:56 AM

Hi Sylvie – if you can listen to the radio show today it just might help with some of your concerns – 1100 am or 1100kfnx.com. I know this is last minute warning again . . .

Best, JB From: Sylvie  Sent: Saturday, March 20, 2010 9:01 AMTo: JB Subject: need to clarify something…

Hi JB, Yesterday I enjoyed the entertainment and listen to everyone expressions! You guys are a lot of fun and good people to be around! Next Friday I will have to go to People Unlimited and get up and express, because I will have to add to my last night expressing. Yesterday I said I arrived at this place of happiness and joy alone, its true, but is not the complete truth and being completely honest is the only way I can be.  BB says: that we need the support of other people, which is very true; we cannot make it alone without finding the support of another like minded person, but where I don’t completely agree is that it has to be at the physical level. I arrived here alone physically, but I got the support from another person that could see exactly what I saw and felt, but that support came through books. And I found this support at crucial time, because I don’t think I would have survived much longer alone with the Knowledge I always new.  I hope you are having a good day and free of pain. Best wishes, sylvie

From: JB Subject: RE: need to clarify something…To: “‘Sylvie Date: Wednesday, March 24, 2010, 11:25 AM

Sylvie – I’m so glad that you did find the support you needed, however it came. What we’re looking at now is about being here forever. I don’t think a book is going to do it for any of us in that regard. To live forever, it’s going to take people. This is a big one, because death comes by way of people too, which makes us not want to go too deep with people. So it has to be the RIGHT people. And we have to have the awareness of the difference. And that’s a huge thing to get in touch with! But then again, we are huge people, right?

Best, JB From: Sylvie  Sent: Thursday, March 25, 2010 10:24 AMTo: JB Subject: RE: need to clarify something…

Hi JB, Nice to hear from you — How have you been feeling? You have been in my mind a lot. I hope your pain has not been bothering you too much. I used to suffer from allergies and I have no doubt the reason I suffered from allergies was because of my childhood repression and as soon I made the connection and consciously felt the repressed emotions, still in me, from my childhood, the allergies left me. My allergies got really bad! Constantly running nose! Like a faucet! Eyes burning! I could not breathe! It was really bad! I am sooooo happy to finally be free from this condition and never have to take another allergy pill. When the time arrives that repression no longer works, the body symptoms get worse and worse to force us to pay attention and listen to the child we once were and feel the true emotions still repressed in us. It reminds me of Alice Miller’s words to one of her readers: “…..To give the Drama to your parents will hardly help you. Even if your parents changed, miraculously, the memory of what happened to you when you were a small child will stay unchanged and will need your feelings of pain and anger to be able to bring you the health and freedom you are looking for. ….”   ….I went through this illusion for years, writing letters to my family and sending all of them books, but they could not face, see the truth and feel their repressed emotions and at the end I had to feel my pain of coming from a family that lacks courage and are not capable of seeing and feeling, and I had to feel all of my repressed emotions alone. I remember one day going through my rage towards my family and rip some of their pictures that I had with me in the States. Like Alice Miller said to his reader even if they “miraculously changed” I still would have to feel my repressed emotions and nothing could ever have change that. ….
Sometimes I feel a little concerned that ghost writing my project might trigger painful repressed emotions and if you are not ready to deal with you will lose interest in ghost writing my project.  Looking forward to see you tomorrow, Sylvie

From: JB Sent: Thursday, March 25, 2010 03:59 PMTo: SylvieSubject: RE: need to clarify something…

Hi Sylvie – thanks for your email and I’m glad you enjoyed the radio show. I am doing really well and am looking forward to your project. I’m not afraid in the least. So pls. don’t worry about that. The thing that bothers me the most is boredom. And I don’t think you’re project is going to be boring. I’ve been through a lot of tough things both before and after I woke to physical immortality. I went through a lot with my family and experienced a lot of frustration trying to get them to see what I saw. Finally I gave it up – one of the best things I ever did.
I agree that repression of childhood experiences can wreak havoc in the body. But I don’t think it’s the cause of all pain in the body. Sometimes we just need extra work in certain areas to build up our bodies from wear and tear, such as sports and sitting at a desk a lot and stuff like that.
My main childhood related thing was emotional pain. The more I woke up, the more I became aware of the depression in my body. It used to be a daily battle for me, but I never accepted it that I was supposed to be depressed. Quite the opposite, I knew it was a lie so I just kept going, until now I just don’t feel it anymore. This is great.
I will get you an estimate for the project by this weekend. See you tomorrow!

JB From: sylvie Sent: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 10:58 AMTo: JBSubject: the danger of gurus

OPEN LETTER TO THE PARTICIPANTS IN THE FORUM – MAY 2001

To Steven and all the others:  I’m not a guru.
Hi Steven, thank you so much for having raised the issue of “guruism” and your mistrust that I share with you.  To be a guru-believer and wanting to grow is in my opinion a contradiction in itself because a guru sells his “wisdom” at the price of people’s authenticity.  I hope that nobody here will need to see in me a guru, especially if you make them aware of this danger to them, as you convincingly did in your letter of May 16 to Anna.
You wonder about my childhood.  Like you I was a stranger to everybody in my family.  Today, I know for sure that I was unwanted, rejected from the conception on, never loved, emotionally completely neglected, and used for the needs of others.  But above all I was lied to, I grew up with a perfect hypocrisy.  My parents, both absolutely unconscious of their true feelings, pretended to love me very much, and I believed this (because I so much needed this illusion) for more than 40 years of my life until I started to suspect the truth hidden behind their pretensions, hidden probably to them too.
Suspecting is not yet as much as knowing for sure but it was the start.  It took me 20 years more to get rid of my denial because I was so alone with the knowledge of my body and my dreams, and a wall of denial surrounded me wherever I opened my mouth.  Writing and painting were the only ways to continue with my search without being offended and “punished” for being the troublemaker.
The reactions to my writing showed me that what I discovered for me was true also for some others.  I felt then less alone.  I began to work with groups of young parents and found again and again the same pattern, the emotional blindness of parents who were afraid of confronting their past traumas and inflicting them unconsciously on their children.  And now we are finding it together on this forum.  Thus, for the first time in my life I no longer feel like a stranger, I feel belonging to a group of people who think like me, whom I don’t need to convince, to inform, to shake, to wake up.  I am here with people who are not scared by what I am saying, who understand me because they have known the same terror, who say so many things that move me profoundly and with whom I can openly communicate like I always wanted but was not given the chance.
This is more than I ever dared to wish.  Talking freely about one’s feelings, without using the well-known conventional defenses was in my opinion possible only in dreams or on another planet.  And now, surprisingly to myself, this became reality.  Unbelievable!
So please don’t see me like a guru, this would again put me in a special position where I no longer want to be.  I am not your teacher or leader, am not giving advices or imposing anything on you, I am not your mother or grandmother, I am Alice, a sister in pain, like Bent’s sister Toril who can tell him: I know what you are talking about, I know dad and mom and the answers they gave us because I can finally feel.  And Bent can say the same to Toril.  I am not the author here, I am one of the people who endured like you a horror in their childhood and who enjoy to know that what they say in English or German or whatever will not be received as sounding Chinese to others.  Can you imagine that I had this feeling all my life until recently?  Thank you all for being there. Alice Miller Read More >>
From: JB Subject: RE: The danger of gurusTo: “‘SylvieDate: Wednesday, March 17, 2010, 2:42 PM About your last email

. . . we are definitely not in to gurus. Gurus present themselves as sort of perfect, which is ridiculous, and then don’t let you get close enough to see how they really live on an every day basis. We are about a real togetherness, where everyone can manifest their total aliveness, not just a guru. I think it’s great to learn from one another, as long as each of us knows that we actually have to make the moves to live and doesn’t try to live through any one else.
See you tomorrow, hopefully! JB

From: Sylvie Sent: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 8:23 PMTo: JBSubject: RE: The danger of gurus.

Thank you JB – Yes! Life is a lot more enjoyable when is shared with other like minded people and truthful have faced their own personal history and repressions, otherwise the compulsion of repetition will continue.  hopefully I will see you after tomorrow, Sylvie

From: JB Sent: Tursday, March 18, 2010 9:07 AM To: Sylvie Subject: The Danger of gurus.

So true, Sylvie. We wake up so that we don’t have to repeat any more Also, about wondering if physical immortality is an illusion . . . what we are feeling is that the real illusion is that we have to fall apart and die. We feel this is all connected to an old way of living that doesn’t want to change, doesn’t want to wake up. So they live in the illusion that there is no other option, which frees them from the responsibility of really awake! But we are taking that responsibility because we are so tired of repeating the old life. We are waking ourselves up.

From: Sylvie  Sent: Monday, April 19, 2010 9:44 AM To: JBSubject: Re: Radio show

Good morning JB, I hope the weekend event was fun. I have marked my calendar for next month event! So nothing will get in the way now, I am looking forward it, even though I feel going to a weekend event is like getting both feet in and I am not too comfortable with both feet in it. In my entire life I have never entered anything with both feet, I always have kept one foot out and looking back in my life I see it was a life saver, because I have avoided from falling into traps. Have a great Monday, Sylvie Schiavone: “You see all religions believe in a god…” Actually, Ms. Shene, not all religions believe in a deity or deities. Buddhism and Confucianism are examples. There are even Jews who consider themselves atheists. But even in secular doctrines, there are illusions, such as “negative” and “positive” feelings in Buddhism and the emphasis of respecting and honoring parents/ancestors regardless of how horrible they are in Confucianism and other secular philosophies. Even if the higher power isn’t God, Allah, etc., parents/ancestors take the deity’s place in this situation. Living in denial is dangerous whether someone believes in a god or not.

“Michael Jackson might still be here with us today if he had someone in his life with courage to speak the truth to him.” True, but it would have been much better if he had the courage within him to condemn his cruel and greedy father. (And to a less extent, his mother for not doing enough to protect him and his siblings.) Yes, someone could have told him the truth, but it would have been up to him to accept it. In other words, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.”

Posted by Schiavonne on Saturday, October 30, 2010 – 12:41 PM

sylvieshene.com: Thank you Schiavone. You are right, not all religions believe in god, but all do have illusions!!! Thank you for bringing it to my attention and I will change it to most religions. I agree with everything you wrote. You are so right at the end it has to be the individual to have the courage to see and feel his own painful truth.

Posted by sylvieshene.com on Saturday, October 30, 2010 – 12:58 PM

I deleted some nasty comments with personals attacks from a few loyal members of People Unlimited, Inc. I guess the words in the book “Combatting Cult Mind Control” by Steven Hasson are very accurate and they came very true to me: “Anyone who finds himself in a cult confession session should remember this warning: Anything you say can and will be used against you. This device can even extend to blackmail if you leave the cult. [p.63] Information control also extends across all relationships. People are not allowed to talk to each other about anything critical of the leader, doctrine, or organization. Members must spy on each other and report improper activities or comments to leaders. [p.65] Most importantly, people are told to avoid contact with ex-members or critics. Those who could provide the most information are the ones to be especially shunned. [p.65] Cult members naturally feel they know more about what’s going on in their group than outsiders do, but in counseling ex-members I find that they often know the least. [p.65] Destructive organizations also control information by having many levels of “truth.” Cult ideologies have “outsider” doctrines and “insider” doctrines. The outsider material is relatively bland stuff for the general public or fresh converts. The inner doctrines are unveiled only gradually as a person gets in deeper. [p.66] Ironically, members of cults look down on anyone involved in any other cult groups. They are very quick to acknowledge that “Those people are in a cult” or “They are the ones who are brainwashed.” They are unable to step out of their own situations and look at themselves objectively. [p.80] Problems are always the fault of the member, and are due to his weak faith, his lack of understanding, “bad ancestors,” evil spirits, and so forth. He perpetually feels guilty for not meeting standards. . . . In every destructive cult I have encountered, fear is a major motivator. [p.82] One of the most obvious signs of a person in a mind control group is a lack of independent decision making abilities. Even though cult members try to convince outsiders that they are autonomous, once you probe beyond the surface it becomes obvious that they cannot make important decisions without first asking permission from superiors. [p.102-103]
(So true when I used to ask questions to JB,he would never have an answer, but would come later with an answer that I knew did not come from him, but was the leader’s words. It was sad to witness.) Every person in a cult has been programmed to stop all “negative” thoughts about the leader, the doctrine, or the organization, and has also been indoctrinated to believe that this group is superior to all other groups and different from all other groups. [p.165]”Cult leaders work very hard to enslave the members, but at the same time they don’t realize that in order to keep slaves they are enslaving themselves also!!!! It’s hard work to keep slaves!!! Most people objective is not freedom for themselves and others, most people objective is to one day have their own slaves. The easiest way to have our own slaves is to give birth to them, but it’s very hard work to raise your own slaves!!! Ask Amy Chua the “Tiger Mother” and there is a big risk that they might rebel one day! Reading this article sounds like completely misery to raising your own slaves.
“Thank you so much! I apploud your courage to stand up for your soul! Your efforts have brought light into a dark place for me,Thank you:-) Typo! Applaud?” I understood what you meant! I didn’t even notice the word was misspelled! 🙂 I am the worst speller in the world and writing is one of the hardest thing for me to do in life. Your words are very encouraging to me to keep trying and do my best to expose the lies and hypocrisy of our society. Your comments shows me that are people out there that appreciate to hear the truth even if it is not well articulated, but sadly most people in our society rather have well-articulated seductive lies and disconnected half-truths that charismatic and very articulate people memorize like parrots to fool them. I wish you courage and strength to always look behind the pretty veils people wear and see the naked truth no matter how much it hurts, because without it true healing and true liberation will never be possible. I wish you much luck in your journey.
MM: Omg I am speechless! my grandmother has been apart of PU for the past 20yrs! she went for a visit one summer and when she returned home she sold her home and possesions and that was the last time we ever saw her,she refuses to come back! she is so brainwashed that its scary!!! In conversation she sounds like a programmed robot nothing she says sounds like its coming from her true self! she posted a stat on fb stating that she “praised” CBJ for keeping her alive! I immidiatly felt a sick feeling in the pit of my stomuch! I knew already that PU was cult because i have been researching it for many years,my grandmother is 75! And dead broke! and completly brainwashed! i fear i will never see her again due to the fact that CBJ has complete control of her life : (
Hi M, Thank you for writing. I am sorry you lost your grandmother to the cult people unlimited. They prey especially on vulnerable emotionally blind people with money or especial gifts and talents and they manipulate them to give them all their money and souls, so they can keep exploiting them to feed their addictions and lavish life style and keep their own repression intact. I am glad my blog was helpful to you. Yes the followers of people unlimited become programed robots without souls and if you ask them a question they have not been programed for it, they will not answer it until they talk to the top leader. The young man JB I talk about in my blog when I asked him if he ever even asked himself if people unlimited could be an illusion, he stayed quiet and with no answer and then like a little child would go to his mother for guidance, he went to the top cult leader and then later send me an e-mail with the answer below that of course didn’t come from him, but the leader, it was so sad to witness a 42 years old man not having his own feelings and thoughts and looking constantly for the leader “his mother figure” constant approval: “Also, about wondering if physical immortality is an illusion . . . what we are feeling is that the real illusion is that we have to fall apart and die. We feel this is all connected to an old way of living that doesn’t want to change, doesn’t want to wake up. So they live in the illusion that there is no other option, which frees them from the responsibility of really awake! But we are taking that responsibility because we are so tired of repeating the old life. We are waking ourselves up” So sad that they don’t see they are the ones in deep sleep, repressed and not awake whatsoever, stuck in the emotional prison of their childhood or time capsule endless unconsciously and compulsively reenacting their childhood drama without a way out.
Just like Alice Miller says: “MANY PROBLEMS APPEAR in a new light when we look to childhood as a source of possible explanations. We are living in an age in which democracies are gaining the upper hand over dictatorships. At the same time the cult-group phenomenon is an indication that there is a growth in the number of totalitarian systems to which people voluntarily submit themselves. People growing up in a spirit of liberty and tolerance, accepted in childhood for what they are, rather than being throttled and stunted by their upbringing, would hardly place themselves at the mercy of a cult group of their own accord. And if by chance or skillful manipulation, they did fall afoul of such an organization, they certainly would not stay there very long. But many people joining such groups seem completely indifferent to the fact that their new surroundings are powered by mechanisms expressly designed to subjugate them, to rob them, of the freedom to think, to act, and feel as they see fit. They seem completely impervious to the fact such groups set out to impose an Orwellian form of surveillance and demand for mindless obedience from which the prospects of escaping are more or less nil. Years of brainwashing and indoctrination ensure that the victims are kept unaware of the insidious harm being done to their personalities. They have no notion of the price they have paid for their malleability because they have no notion that there is any alternative. The thing that concerns me most about cult groups is the unconscious manipulations that I have described in detail in my work. It is the way in which the repressed and unreflected childhood biographies of parents and therapists influence the lives of children and patients entrusted to their care without anyone involved actually realizing it. At first glance, it may seem as if what goes on in cults and cult like therapy groups takes place on a different level from the unconscious manipulation of children by their parents. We assume that in the former instance we are in the presence of an intentional, careful planned and organized form of manipulation aimed at exploiting the specific predicament of individuals. …Thus they sparked off a conflagration they were unable to control, much less extinguish. First, they had learned how to reduce people to the emotional state of the helpless child. Once they had achieved that, they also learned how to use unconscious regression to exercise total control over their victims. From then on, what they did seemed to come automatically, in accordance, with the child-rearing patterns instilled into them in their own childhood.” Read more

L: Super Sylvie, What is the difference between a piece of coal and a diamond?

I just deleted some nasty comments with personals attacks from a few loyal members of People Unlimited, Inc. I guess the words in the book “Combatting Cult Mind Control” by Steven Hasson are very accurate and they just came very true to me. “Anyone who finds himself in a cult confession session should remember this warning: Anything you say can and will be used against you. This device can even extend to blackmail if you leave the cult. [p.63] Information control also extends across all relationships. People are not allowed to talk to each other about anything critical of the leader, doctrine, or organization. Members must spy on each other and report improper activities or comments to leaders. [p.65] Most importantly, people are told to avoid contact with ex-members or critics. Those who could provide the most information are the ones to be especially shunned. [p.65] Cult members naturally feel they know more about what’s going on in their group than outsiders do, but in counseling ex-members I find that they often know the least. [p.65] Destructive organizations also control information by having many levels of “truth.” Cult ideologies have “outsider” doctrines and “insider” doctrines. The outsider material is relatively bland stuff for the general public or fresh converts. The inner doctrines are unveiled only gradually as a person gets in deeper. [p.66] Ironically, members of cults look down on anyone involved in any other cult groups. They are very quick to acknowledge that “Those people are in a cult” or “They are the ones who are brainwashed.” They are unable to step out of their own situations and look at themselves objectively. [p.80] Problems are always the fault of the member, and are due to his weak faith, his lack of understanding, “bad ancestors,” evil spirits, and so forth. He perpetually feels guilty for not meeting standards. . . . In every destructive cult I have encountered, fear is a major motivator. [p.82] One of the most obvious signs of a person in a mind control group is a lack of independent decision making abilities. Even though cult members try to convince outsiders that they are autonomous, once you probe beyond the surface it becomes obvious that they cannot make important decisions without first asking permission from superiors. [p.102-103] (So true when I used to ask questions to JB, he would never have an answer, but would come later with an answer that I knew did not come from him, but was the leader’s words. It was sad to witness.) Every person in a cult has been programmed to stop all “negative” thoughts about the leader, the doctrine, or the organization, and has also been indoctrinated to believe that this group is superior to all other groups and different from all other groups. [p.165]” I witnessed how hard they work at enslaving the members, but at the sometime they don’t realize that in order to keep slaves they are enslaving themselves also!!!! It’s hard work to keep slaves!!! Most people objective is not freedom for themselves and others most people objective is to one day have their own slaves. The easiest way to have our own slaves is to give birth to them, but it’s very hard work to raise your own slaves!!! Raising your own slaves is very hard work and not fun at all! Ask Amy Chua the “Tiger Mother” and there is a big risk that they might rebel one day! Reading this article sounds like completely misery to raising your own slaves.
 Jozi:I have a friend who is such a sweet woman…moved here from the other side of the world to be a part of this group. I am worried for her and have no idea how to broach it to her. I do not want to lose her as a friend but honestly…who really believes that there is a possibility of living forever? It simply is not biologically possible. For years and years perhaps but forever? Not gonna happen. I continue to be worried for my friend. If I suspect she is in danger I will step in. Til then all I can do is to pray for the best for her. J
Jozi, I am sorry People Unlimited cult got their invisible reins on your friend. When I was a guest in this cult I could feel their invisible reins trying to come and get me and for short moments they almost had me in spite of me being able to see very clear from the start, that it was all an illusion and they were not real, but they were so entertaining that I kept going and I thought they could not harm me as long I was aware they were just a show and an illusion. Before this experience with People Unlimited cult, I use to think that illusions could not harm us as long we see them for what they are and that it was okay to have fun with illusions for a awhile, but now thanks to this experience, I see that some illusions can be very dangerous even if we recognize them for what they are. Unless your friend wakes up and recognizes that she has fallen victim of their illusion it’s not much you can do.
SSRR88: I’ve never heard of this cult until I read your post. Though I’ll never meet them because I don’t live in Arizona, they kind of creep me out. I visited their website and they sound like an atheist version of a new age religion. I stay away from anything that sounds religious even if it’s headed by other atheists. This proves that even those who don’t believe in deities can hold on to illusions and manipulate poor victims into their schemes.
ssrr88, Thank you for your comment. “This proves that even those who don’t believe in deities can hold on to illusions and manipulate poor victims into their schemes.” Very well said, but you are not free from meeting them, because they travel around the country and the world to recruit new members, JB was a young man recruited in Israel from Washington DC, people move here to be with them from all over and what is really sad is that they bring people from other countries illegally and these poor people sale all their belongs in their countries to be with them. Some that wake up to their schemes and leave the group find themselves totally alone here with no place to turn and with no money. It’s very cruel what they do to people.
SSRR88: I think it’s very unlikely that they would come to an Illinoisan small town which is where I live; they seem to target big cities. But, I will watch out for them just to be on the safe side.
 Posted by at 9:08 pm  Comments Off on People Unlimited Cult
Dec 212014
 

Hi Petra,
Thank you for your detail review of Daniel Mackler’s book. I really liked it and I enjoyed reading very much. It is brilliant! You brought to my attention certain points that I had missed, like his gender roles discrimination.

Petra:“By no means DM “takes Alice Miller to the next level” as it says on the cover and as he seems to see himself, there is nothing much new in this book that Alice Miller hasn’t already said, but in a much better, clearer and more convincing way. He has no real arguments to prove what he says and just repeats what he has read or heard elsewhere and adds some of his own personal points of view, which he has a right to of course, but which he shouldn’t present as general truths, for example his views on sex, relationships, abortion and having children or even keeping pets.”

Sylvie: Completely agree. I too disliked so much his views on sex, relationships, abortion, having children and keeping pets, even though a lot of people unconsciously and compulsively reenact their childhood drama with their pets and cause much unnecessary suffering to the animals, just like they do to their children, but doing it with children affects the whole society and keeps the vicious circle going. He says having an abortion is murder and mutilates our soul, I see it the other way around: carrying a pregnancy to term and giving birth to a new being that I am not able to take care of and protect, THAT, would be mutilating my soul and would be soul murdering, and would have robbed me the chance at freedom and I talk from experience, knowledge is experience, everything else is just information and experience has taught me that most information out there is misleading information and lies. I know without a doubt if I had carry a pregnancy to term when I was not ready, my soul would have been mutilated and would have been soul murder by bringing a new being into an abusive vicious circle and my soul would not have become whole and free like it is today, and I was able to liberate a soul instead of contributing two more mutilated lost and confused souls into this world and continue the painful vicious circle. Some people see a fertilized egg (Zygotes) as a person, but that is not reality. The reality is a fertilized egg is nothing but a fertilized egg (Zygotes). Pro-lifers fight so hard for the un-born beings because unconsciously they want an endless supply of innocent powerless beings to use, exploit and project their disowned parts. Carrying a pregnancy to term and giving birth to new being we are not ready to nurture, take care of and protect, THAT, is soul murdering and contributes to the destruction of the world, Just as Alice Miller wrote in her article “Protecting Life After Birth” she says: It is, in fact, not surprising to find that those who are both victims and apologist for the use of violence and severity against children are often those who most passionately proclaim their love of the unborn child, i.e., the kernel of life. Abortion can, indeed, be seen as the most powerful symbol of the psychic annihilation and mutilation practiced since time immemorial on children. But to combat this evil merely at the symbolic level deflects us from the reality we should not evade for a moment longer: the reality of the abused and humiliated child, which, as a result of its disavowed and unresolved injuries, will insidiously become, either openly or aided by hypocrisy, a danger to society. It is above all the children already born that have a right to life – a right to coexistence with adults in a world in which, with or without the help of the church, violence against children has been unequivocally outlawed. Until such legislation exists, talk of “the right to life” remains not only a mockery of humanity but a contribution to its destruction.”
Petra: “To me he seems a very frustrated person who has not overcome his own traumas as much as he thinks. The whole book seems more like a personal diary, which may help him in his own personal quest to find himself, but I don’t find it very helpful for someone who is looking for a way out of his or her childhood trauma.”

Sylvie: Completely agree.

Petra: “Before he works as a therapist or gives advice to others, he should get a lot of more things settled for himself, in my opinion. He touches a lot of general subjects and truths without getting deeper into any of them, unlike Alice Miller who concentrates on concrete cases and uses them to explain the general mechanism of how mistreatment affects the individual and the society.”

Sylvie: Completely agree, I could not have articulated better myself. These are the same problems with many people calling themselves “experts” but in fact are just causing harm to the general public by creating a smoke screen and keeping people in the dark. They pass their psychological virus into others under the disguise of help vey silently and covertly, which will be very hard for emotionally blind people to detect and become aware of. These people are very dangerous, because they keep themselves and society stuck in the vicious circle. I call people like this parrots with very good memories and articulate repeating words they heard else where, but they have not fully understood and are disconnected from their own personal truths.

Petra: “Apart from that, I don’t really understand his criteria for enlightenment, who defines when a person is fully, partially or not at all enlightened and thus has the right to have children for example? I think he generalizes far too much without giving convincing explanations for his opinions, which is ok, as long as it is just his opinion and not an expectation to others.”

Sylvie: I agree, he says that a very disassociated person can mimic an enlightened person, to me it’s so easy to distinguish between the two; a very disassociated person can only fool himself and others that are still very emotionally blind. He also says that an enlightened person can be mistaken or confused with a person from the far right, what a bunch of BS. An enlightened person can never be confused with a person from the far right, because an enlightened person no longer uses crutches like dogma, morality, religion, spirituality, ideologies and theories to hide behind, so he/she does not have to face and feel his painful truths. I have not met one single person from the far right that does not use one of these crutches.

Petra: “In general I don’t disagree with what he writes, because it’s obvious that his intentions are good and he wants to defend children.”

Sylvie: Having good intentions means nothing to me, the path to hell is full of good intentions, my older sisters had very good intentions, but they caused me much pain and unnecessary suffering for many, many years under the disguise of wanting to protect me. A lot of people and parents out there proclaiming to have the best interests of the children at heart and with their best intentions unconsciously and very deceptively they continue the painful abusive circle. Anyone still vulnerable that goes to him for help will be emotionally abused all over again under the mask of help, he is silently and covertly passing the psychological virus or lies his parents passed on to him, but now these lies are coated with abstract knowledge, disconnected half-truths he has taken from Alice Miller and others and with these lies coated with bits of disconnected truths serving as hooks to allure people to him, much like cult leaders do. I find people like that very dangerous and abusive that exploits emotionally blind people and they only contribute to creating more confusion and keeping people in the state of confusion and trapped. Did you read Alice Miller’s comment about DM, she call him MR X I too don’t like to mention his name because that is giving him publicity he does not deserve, because consciously or unconsciously only he wants to do is create confusion.

Petra: “I think he will rather confirm the negative options of people who reject or minimize the idea of the importance of childhood traumas than convince them. To me he seems to be a perfectionist and a puritan.”

Sylvie: Totally agree, while I was reading his book, it reminded me of my older sisters that were perfectionist and puritans.

petra: “As to his language I found it simply horrible, hammering the same phrases over and over again into the reader’s mind, using anaphors ( all the sentences starting with the same words) all the time ( p.e.: it comes as no surprise…if he is fortunate…he conceives….he imagines….etc….This is the typical stylistic device used by a preacher or a politician who wants to convince his audience of something he has not completely understood himself, trying to give power to his words and to make up for the lack of genuine meaning. His style is demagogic, polemic and fanatic and he states a lot of common places and platitudes (something that he criticises in other writers). When I was reading the book, especially the first part, I visualized a fanatic man preaching to a big crowd. Besides I don’t like his distribution of gender roles, whenever he speaks of the abused child he refers to HIM as HE, while the abusive parent is always a SHE, the same when he speaks of the therapist: the (enlightened) therapist is always a HE while the patient is a SHE, I think this is just discriminating and sexist use of language, even if it is exchangeable, it’s quite significant.”

Sylvie: I completely agree with everything you say here, I would not be surprised if one of his parents is a preacher, children that are preached to, learn to preach, I mentioned it in one of my comments on the book discussion and when DM read my comments, he did not deny it, so provably was true otherwise he would have deny it.

I had to look up the definition of the word “Demagogic” the dictionary definition is: “making an appeal to people’s emotions, instincts, and prejudices in a way that is considered to be politically manipulative and dangerous” So true and this is why he can be abusive to a person that still is emotionally blind and vulnerable. This is what cult leaders do also.

Petra: “To his defense I must say, that I liked what he says about the environment that favours the way to enlightenment, living a simple life in a healthy environment helps a lot to focus on the essentials without being distracted by consumerism and superflous things as I am lucky enough to know from my own experience.”

Sylvie: I too also know from experience that a simple life favors the way to enlightenment, I intuitively knew that material goods would not be a long term solutions to the painful feelings I was feeling and I needed to explore and find out the real causes of my pain and I did not distracted myself with consumerism and superfluous things, but unfortunately some people are not as fortunate to find a true enlightened witness to help them understand the roots of their painful feelings or lack courage to face and feel their painful truth and they distract themselves with all kind of things or become addictive to all kind of things and it seems DM is running, distracting himself from facing and feeling his repressed painful feelings by becoming fanatic or addicted to spirituality, morality and his own ideologies.

Petra: “Back to DM I think his book is definitely not a great work of art, but whoever writes a book writes it from his or her own point of view and, it’s up to the readers what we make of it, if we like it or if we consider it worthwhile. Every attempt to make people aware of the connection between childhood dramas and the state of our world is good.”

Sylvie: Yes, is up to the reader to decide if the book is worthwhile and I definitely have made the decision that is not a worthwhile book and I have the responsibility to warn people that might still emotionally blind of all the red flags and dangers I see in it, When I was still emotionally blind I wished I had someone warming and explaining to me of the dangers of some people’s Ideologies and theories, and how illusory they can be, but I had to go by touch for many, many years and sometimes I got really burned by people that are very articulate and say very convincing and seductive pretty lies coated with a little bits of truth that ring like authentic truths, it would have prevented me unnecessary suffering for so many years. Yes every attempt to make people aware of the connection between childhood dramas and the state of our world is good, but if a person is not genuine, all it does is reenacting the illusions we lived with as a children, he has not faced and felt his own repression, but instead turns around and unconsciously passes the same lies passed on to him into others, but now coated with abstract knowledge or bits of disconnected truths under the disguise of help and that only makes him another emotional abuser, preacher, phony and a hypocrite person trying to manipulate people.
We both see and feel things very similar, I just might be more blunt and direct and you are more sophisticated and a diplomat, maybe the difference is because I am self educated with only six grade education that drop out of school in the seven grade and you have a formal education from an University, and like the French say: vive la difference! Maybe together we can help balance each other out.
Again thank you for your time and thoughts.
Love, Sylvie

Hi Sylvie,

How are you? I finished reading the book and I agree with you to a great extent. By no means DM “takes Alice Miller to the next level” as it says on the cover and as he seems to see himself, there is nothing much new in this book that Alice Miller hasn’t already said, but in a much better, clearer and more convincing way. He has no real arguments to prove what he says and just repeats what he has read or heard elsewhere and adds some of his own personal points of view, which he has a right to of course, but which he shouldn’t present as general truths, for example his views on sex, relationships, abortion and having children or even keeping pets. To me he seems a very frustrated person who has not overcome his own traumas as much as he thinks. The whole book seems more like a personal diary, which may help him in his own personal quest to find himself, but I don’t find it very helpful for someone who is looking for a way out of his or her childhood trauma.Before he works as a therapist or gives advice to others, he should get a lot of more things settled for himself, in my opinion. He touches a lot of general subjects and truths without getting deeper into any of them, unlike Alice Miller who concentrates on concrete cases and uses them to explain the general mechanism of how mistreatment affects the individual and the society.Apart from that, I don’t really understand his criteria for enlightenment, who defines when a person is fully, partially or not at all enlightened and thus has the right to have children for example? I think he generalizes far too much without giving convincing explanations for his opinions, which is ok, as long as it is just his opinion and not an expectation to others.

In general I don’t disagree with what he writes, because it’s obvious that his intentions are good and he wants to defend children. Maybe I wouldn’t go as far as you to call him abusive, I think it’s a question of definition, but I also found him confusing and not very precise, especially for people who read this book without knowing Alice Miller. I think he will rather confirm the negative options of people who reject or minimize the idea of the importance of childhood traumas than convince them. To me he seems to be a perfectionist and a puritan.

As to his language I found it simply horrible, hammering the same phrases over and over again into the reader’s mind, using anaphors ( all the sentences starting with the same words) all the time ( p.e.: it comes as no surprise…if he is fortunate…he conceives….he imagines….etc….This is the typical stylistic device used by a preacher or a politician who wants to convince his audience of something he has not completely understood himself, trying to give power to his words and to make up for the lack of genuine meaning. His style is demagogic, polemic and fanatic and he states a lot of common places and platitudes (something that he criticises in other writers). When I was reading the book, especially the first part, I visualized a fanatic man preaching to a big crowd. Besides I don’t like his distribution of gender roles, whenever he speaks of the abused child he refers to HIM as HE, while the abusive parent is always a SHE, the same when he speaks of the therapist: the(enlightened) therapist is always a HE while the patient is a SHE, I think this is just discriminating and sexist use of language, even if it is exchangeable, it’s quite significant.

To his defense I must say, that I liked what he says about the environment that favours the way to enlightenment, living a simple life in a healthy environment helps a lot to focus on the essentials without being distracted by consumerism and superflous things as I am lucky enough to know from my own experience. I’m in the fortunate situation to live in such an environment (because I chose to, I’ll tell you about myself in another mail, it would lead too far here and now), in a very small village of only 30 inhabitants, the nearest bigger village has about 2,500 and is 10 km away. That’s where I work and where you can get everything you need to live a comfortable life but without the excess of consumerism of a bigger town or city. I personally don’t need much but I do appreciate some of the commodities of modern life like household machines that help you have more time for more pleasant things or the internet for example, because if you can handle it in a reasonable way it’s a great way to exchange ideas with people you had never met otherwise. I love the simple life, but I’m not one of those “alternative” people whose aim it is to live self-sufficiently working as slaves in their vegetable gardens in order not to starve.

Back to DM I think his book is definitely not a great work of art, but whoever writes a book writes it from his or her own point of view and, it’s up to the readers what we make of it, if we like it or if we consider it worthwhile. Every attempt to make people aware of the connection between childhood dramas and the state of our world is good.Conclusion…let’s write a better book….a more practical one that might really appeal to people who usually don’t read this kind of books.

Hope to hear from you soon Love, Petra

by Schiavonne: I know who you two are talking about. (I’ll call him Mr. Mackler.) While Mr. Mackler does have good intentions, he does come off as a bit of a zealot. Even I got a little sucked in by his messages.

“Besides I don’t like hi…s distribution of gender roles, whenever he speaks of the abused child he refers to HIM as HE, while the abusive parent is always a SHE, the same when he speaks of the therapist: the(enlightened) therapist is always a HE while the patient is a SHE, I think this is just discriminating and sexist use of language, even if it is exchangeable, it’s quite significant.” (In this passage he probably is unconsciously depicting his own childhood and reversing the role to blind other victims.)

Since I have been a bit confused by what he says, this is a sign that I need to do some more emotional work. I have to admit that I sometimes get carried away by some ideologies, but thankfully they’re short-lived. He seems kind of arrogant, too, the way he preaches and all. (At least I’m honest about my tendency to be misled sometimes and not like him who thinks he’s perfect or something.)

I also find it weird that he seems to praise Ms. Miller, yet he bashes her, too. How can you admire and harshly criticize a person? You and XX are correct that he needs to do some more emotional work before he blind people with his illusions.

Posted by Schiavonne on Tuesday, September 21, 2010 – 7:14 AM

Sylvie Imelda Shene: “Since I have been a bit confused by what he says, this is a sign that I need to do some more emotional work. I have to admit that I sometimes get carried away by some ideologies, but thankfully they’re short-lived. He seems kind of arrog…ant, too, the way he preaches and all. (At least I’m honest about my tendency to be misled sometimes and not like him who thinks he’s perfect or something.)”

I too still sometimes get confused by what some so called “experts” say, but like you not for long.

“I also find it weird that he seems to praise Ms. Miller, yet he bashes her, too. How can you admire and harshly criticize a person? ”

He praises Alice Miller and then bashes her, because he is trying to make a name for himself by stepping on her. I find it very disturbing.

Posted by sylvieshene.com on Friday, October 08, 2010 – 1:07 PM

Raymond Lambert: Thank you Sylvie and Petra for your comments. I think they will do for a LIFE-TIME and maybe we can let him drift into obscure neighbourhoods where I will not venture or stray.

 Posted by at 8:50 pm  Comments Off on Daniel Mackler’s Book Review
Dec 212014
 

These words by Alice Miller go right to the heart! “Kafka was hardly aware of the fact that the main sources of his imagination were deeply hidden in his early childhood. Most writers aren’t. But the amnesia of an artist or writer, though sometimes a burden for their body, doesn’t have any negative consequences for society. The readers simply admire the work and are rarely interested in the writers’ infancy. However, the amnesia of politicians or leaders of sects does afflict countless people, and will continue to do so, as long as society remains blind to the important connections between the denial of traumatic experiences in early childhood and the destructive, criminal actions of individuals.”

The Essential Role of an Enlightened Witness in Society
Wednesday January 01, 1997

Since adolescence I have wondered why so many people take pleasure in humiliating others. Clearly the fact that some are sensitive to the suffering of others proves that the destructive urge to hurt is not a universal aspect of human nature. So why do some tend to solve their problems by violence while others don’t?

Philosophy failed to answer my question and the Freudian theory of the death instinct has never convinced me. Nor could I make sense of genetic explanations of the evil, of the naive idea that a human being can be “born bad.” Nobody could answer the crucial question: How is it that so many turn-of-the-century German children were born with such malignant genes that they’d later become Hitler’s willing executioners? It has always been inconceivable to me that a child who comes into the world among attentive, loving and protective caregivers could become a monster. Then, by closely examining the childhood histories of murderers, especially mass murderers and dictators, I began to comprehend the roots of good and evil: not in the genes, as commonly believed, but in the earliest days of life. Today, neurobiological research seems to fully corroborate what I discovered almost twenty years ago.

At that time I quoted in For Your Own Good at length the pedagogical advice given to parents in Germany a century ago, and detailed what I believed to be a connection between the systematic cruelty of these methods and the systematic cruelty of Hitler’s executioners forty years later. The numerous and widely-read tracts by Dr. Daniel Gottlieb Schreber, the inventor of the Schrebergärten (the German word for “small allotments”), are of major interest here. Some of his books ran to as many as forty editions around the year 1860, and their central concern was to instruct parents in the systematic upbringing of infants from the very first day of life. Many people – motivated by what they thought to be the best of intentions complied with the advice given them by Schreber and other authors about how best to raise their children. Today we would call it a systematic instruction in child persecution and maltreatment. One of Schreber’s convictions was that when babies cry they should be made to desist by the use of spanking, assuring his readers that “such a procedure is only necessary once, or at the most twice, and then one is master of the child for all time. From then on, one look, one single gesture will suffice”. Above all, these books counseled that the newborn child should be forced from the very first day to obey and to refrain from crying.

We all know – or, today, we should all know – that physical punishment only produces obedient children but cannot prevent them from becoming violent or sick adults precisely because of this treatment. This knowledge is now scientifically proven and was finally officially accepted by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 1998. Contrary to common opinion prevalent as recently as fifteen years ago, the human brain at birth is far from being fully developed. It is use-dependent, needing loving stimulation for the child from her first day on. The abilities a person’s brain can develop depend on experiences in the first three years of life.

Studies on abandoned and severely maltreated Romanian children, as an example, revealed striking lesions in certain areas of the brain. The repeated traumatization has led to an increased release of stress hormones which have attacked the sensitive tissue of the brain and destroyed the new, already built-up neurons. The areas of their brains responsible for the “management” of their emotions are twenty to thirty percent smaller than in other children of the same age. Obviously, all children (not only Romanian) who suffer such abandonment and maltreatment will be damaged in this way.

The neurobiological research makes it easier for us to understand the way Nazis like Eichmann, Himmler, Hess and others functioned. The rigorous obedience training they underwent in earliest infancy stunted the development of such human capacities as compassion and pity for the sufferings of others. Their total emotional atrophy enabled the perpetrators of the most heinous crimes imaginable to function “normally” and to continue without the slightest remorse to impress their environment with their efficiency in the years after the war. Dr. Mengele could make the most cruel experiments with Jewish children in Auschwitz and then live for thirty years like a “normal,” well adjusted man.

Those turn-of-the-century children who were “subjugated by looks” and systematically subjected to obedience drilling were not only exposed to corporal correction but also to severe emotional deprivation. The upbringing manuals of the day described physical demonstrations of affection such as stroking, cuddling and kissing as indications of a doting, mollycoddling attitude. Parents were warned of the disastrous effects of spoiling their children, a form of indulgence entirely incompatible with the prevalent ideal of rigor and severity. As a result, infants suffered from the absence of direct loving contact with the parents, which also caused certain areas of the brain to remain underdeveloped.

I found it logical that a child beaten often and deprived of loving physical contact would quickly pick up the language of violence. For him this language became the only effective means of communication available. However, when I began to illustrate my thesis by drawing on the examples of Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Ceaucescu, when I tried to expose the social consequences of child maltreatment, I first encountered strong resistance. Repeatedly I was told, “I, too, was a battered child, but that didn’t make me a criminal.” When I asked these people for details about their childhood, I was always told of a person who made the difference, a sibling, a teacher, a neighbor, just somebody who liked or even loved them but, at least in most cases, was unable to protect them. Yet through his presence this person gave the child a notion of trust and love.

I call these persons “helping witnesses.” Dostoyevsky, for instance, had a brutal father, but a loving mother. She wasn’t strong enough to protect him from his father, but she gave him a powerful conception of love, without which his novels would have been unthinkable. Many have also been lucky enough to find “enlightened” and courageous witnesses, people who helped them to recognize the injustices they suffered, the significance the hurtful treatment had for them, and its influences on their whole life. They may even suffer much in their life, may become drug addicted, and have relationship problems, but thanks to the few good experiences in their childhood usually do not become criminals. The criminal outcome seems to be connected with a childhood that didn’t provide any helping witness, that was a place of constant threat and fear.

In my book The Untouched Key I mention the severe trauma that the child Pablo Picasso underwent at the age of three: the earthquake in Malaga in 1884, the flight from the family’s apartment into a cave that seemed to be more safe, and eventually witnessing the birth of his sister in the same cave under these very scary circumstances. However, Picasso survived these traumas without later becoming psychotic or criminal because he was protected by his very loving parents. They were able to give him what he most needed in this chaotic situation: empathy, compassion, protection and the feeling of being safe in their arms.

Thanks to the presence of his parents, the two enlightened witnesses of his fear and pain, not only during the earthquake but also throughout his whole childhood, he was later able to express his early, frightening experiences in a creative way. In Picasso’s famous painting “Guernica” we can see what might have happened in the mind of the three-year-old child while he was watching the dying people and horses and listening to the children screaming for help on the long walk to the shelter. Small children can go unscared even through bomb-raids if they feel safe in the arms of their parents.

It is much more difficult for a child to overcome early traumatization if they are caused by their own parents. In my book Thou Shalt Not Be Aware, which has now come out in a new edition, I analyze the childhood of the writer Franz Kafka. I try to show that the nightmares he describes in his stories recount exactly what might have happened to the small, severely neglected infant Kafka. He was born into a family in which he must have felt like the hero of “The Castle” (ordered about but not needed and constantly misled) or like K. in “The Trial” (charged with incomprehensible guilt) or like “The Hunger Artist” who never found the food he was so strongly longing for. Thanks to the love and the deep comprehension of his sister Otla in his puberty, his late “helping witness,” Kafka could eventually give expression to his suffering in writing. Does it mean that he therefore overcame his traumatic childhood? He could indeed write his work, full of knowledge and wisdom, but why did he die so early – in his thirties – of tuberculosis? It happened in a time when he knew many people who loved and admired him. However, these good experiences could not erase the unconscious emotions and memories stored in his body.

Kafka was hardly aware of the fact that the main sources of his imagination were deeply hidden in his early childhood. Most writers aren’t. But the amnesia of an artist or writer, though sometimes a burden for their body, doesn’t have any negative consequences for society. The readers simply admire the work and are rarely interested in the writers’ infancy . However, the amnesia of politicians or leaders of sects does afflict countless people, and will continue to do so, as long as society remains blind to the important connections between the denial of traumatic experiences in early childhood and the destructive, criminal actions of individuals.

Anyone addressing the problem of child abuse is likely to be faced with a very strange finding: it has been observed again and again that parents who tend to maltreat and neglect their children do it in ways which resemble the treatment they endured in their own childhood, without any conscious memory of their early experiences. Fathers who sexually abuse their children are usually unaware of the fact that they had themselves suffered the same abuse. It is rather in therapy, even if ordered by the courts, that they can discover, sometimes stupefied, their own history. And realize thereby that for years they have attempted to act out their own scenario, just to get rid of it.

The explanation of this fact is that information about the cruelty suffered during childhood remains stored in the brain in the form of unconscious memories. For a child, conscious experience of such treatment is impossible. If children are not to break down completely under the pain and the fear, they must repress that knowledge. But the unconscious memories of the child who has been neglected and maltreated, even before he has learned to speak, drive the adult to reproduce those repressed scenes over and over again in the attempt to liberate himself from the fears that cruelty has left with him. Former victims create situations in which they can assume the active role. In this way the emotion of fear can indeed be avoided momentarily – but not in the long term, because the repressed emotions of the past don’t change as long as they remain unnoticed. They can only be transformed into hatred directed towards oneself and/or scapegoats, such as one’s own children or alleged enemies. I see this hatred as a possible consequence of the old rage and despair, never consciously felt, but stored up in the body, in the limbic brain.

The German reformer Martin Luther, for example, was an intelligent and educated man, but he hated all Jews and he encouraged parents to beat their children. He was no perverted sadist like Hitler’s executioners. But 400 years before Hitler he was disseminating this kind of destructive counsel. According to Eric Ericson’s biography, Luther’s mother beat him severely even before he was treated this way by his father and his teacher. He believed this punishment had “done him good” and was therefore justified. The conviction stored in his body that if parents do it then it must be right to torment someone weaker than yourself left a much more lasting impression on him than the divine commandments and the Christian exhortations to love your neighbor and be compassionate toward the weak.

Similar cases are discussed by Philip Greven in his highly informative book Spare the Child. He quotes various American men and women of the church recommending cruel beatings for babies and infants in the first few months of life as a way of ensuring that the lesson thus learnt remains impressed on them for the rest of their life. Unfortunately they were only too right. These terrible, destructive texts which have misled so many parents are the conclusive proof of the long-lasting effect of beating. They could only have been written by people who were exposed to merciless beatings as children and later glorified what they had been through. Their cruel beliefs could only grow up in the darkness of their own cruel and repressed infancy. Fortunately, these books were not published in forty editions in the USA.

As the example of Luther shows, nothing that a child learns later about morality at home, in school or in church will ever have the same strong and long lasting effect as the treatment inflicted on his or her body in the first few days, weeks and months. The lesson learned in the first three years cannot be expunged. If the body of a child learns from birth that tormenting and punishing an innocent creature is the right thing to do, and that the child’s suffering must not be acknowledged, that message will always be stronger than intellectual knowledge acquired at a later stage. Greven’s examples eloquently demonstrate that people subjected to maltreatment in childhood may go on insisting all their lives that beatings are harmless although there is overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Can a person who still supports corporal punishment of children be considered as somebody who has overcome his or her abuse? He may still remain a blind victim who refuses to face his history and to work on it. Instead he will give destructive advice until his death and continue to ignore the child’s pain, because his view of reality is severely distorted by early unconscious experience. On the other hand, a child protected, loved and cherished from the outset will thrive on that experience for a lifetime and develop empathy for others.

It is interesting that almost all rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust who were interviewed reported that their parents had attempted to discipline them with arguments and support rather than punishment. They were not beaten. People given early affection and support are quick to emulate the sympathetic and autonomous natures of their parents. Common to all the rescuers were self-confidence, the ability to make immediate decisions and the capacity for empathy and compassion with others. Seventy per cent of them said that it only took them a matter of minutes to decide they wanted to intervene. Eighty percent said they did not consult anyone else.

This attitude, prized in all cultures as “noble,” is not something instilled in children with fine words. If the behavior actually displayed by caretakers is such as to contradict their own words, if children are spanked in the name of lofty ideals, as is still the custom in some parochial schools, then those elevated sentiments are doomed to go unheard or even to provoke rage and violence. The children may end up aping those high-minded phrases and mouthing them in later life, but they will never put them into practice because they have no example to emulate.

In my most recent book, Paths of Life, I try to illustrate this dynamic by describing Hitler’s childhood, a childhood that offers us many still untouched keys. Hitler’s specific problems with Jews can in fact be traced back to the period before his birth. In her youth, Hitler’s paternal grandmother had been employed in a Jewish merchant’s household in Graz. After her return home to the Austrian village of Braunau, she gave birth to a son – Alois, later to become Hitler’s father – and received child-support payments from the family in Graz for fourteen years. This story, which is recounted in many biographies of Hitler, represented a dilemma for the Hitler family. They had of course an interest in denying that the young woman had been left with a child either by the Jewish merchant or his son. On the other hand it was impossible to assert that a Jew would pay child-support for so long without good reason. Such generosity on the part of a Jew would have been inconceivable for the inhabitants of an Austrian village. Thus the Hitler family was faced with the insoluble dilemma of devising a version that would serve to nullify their “disgrace.”

For Alois Hitler the suspicion that he might be of Jewish descent was insufferable in the context of the anti-Jewish environment in which he was raised. All the plaudits he earned himself as a customs officer were insufficient to liberate him from the latent rage at the disgrace and humiliation visited on him through no fault of his own. The only thing he could do with impunity was to take out this rage on his son Adolf. According to the reports of his daughter of a former marriage, Angela, Alois beat his son mercilessly every day. In an attempt to exorcise his childhood fears, his son nurtured the manic delusion that it was up to him to free not only himself of Jewish blood but also all Germany and later the whole world. Right up to his death in the bunker, Hitler remained a victim of this delusion because all his life his fear of his half-Jewish father had remained locked in his unconscious mind.

I have set out these ideas in greater detail in my book For Your Own Good. One can find them highly unsettling and in no way sufficient to explain Hitler’s actions. Not all his actions, I agree, but certainly his delusions. And those delusions were at the very least the foundation of his actions, as all our unconscious emotions can become. I can certainly picture the boy Hitler swearing vengeance on “the Jews,” those monstrous fantasy-figures of an already diseased imagination. Consciously, he probably thought he could have led a happy life if “the Jew” had not plunged his grandmother into the disgrace that he and his family had to live with. And it was this that in his eyes served to excuse the beatings he received from his father, who, after all, was himself “a victim of the evil and omnipotent Jew.” In the mind of an angry, seriously confused child, it is only a short step from there to the idea that all Jews should be exterminated.

Not only Jews. In the household of Hitler’s family lived for years the very unpredictable schizophrenic aunt Johanna whose behavior is reported to have been very scary for the child. As an adult Hitler ordered to be killed every handicapped and psychotic person to free the German society from this burden. Germany seemed for him to symbolize the innocent child who had to be saved. Consequently, Hitler wanted to protect his nation from the dangers he himself had faced. Absurd? Not at all. For an unconscious mind this kind of symbolization might sound very normal and logical.

Besides those fears connected to father and aunt there was his early relationship with his very intimidated mother, who herself lived in constant fear of her husband’s violent outbursts and beatings. She called him “uncle Alois” and endured patiently his humiliating treatment without any protest. Adolf’s mother had lost her first three children to illness and Adolf was her first child to survive infancy. We can easily imagine that the milk he drank from his mother was in a way “poisoned” by her own fear. He drank her milk together with her fears but was of course unable to understand or integrate them. These irrational fears – that an outsider, watching his speeches on videos, can easily recognize – stayed unrecognized and unconscious to Hitler until the end of his life. Stored up in his body, they drove him constantly to new destructive actions in his endless attempt to find an outcome. To his dying day, Hitler was convinced that only the death of every single Jew could shield him from the fearful and daily memory of his brutal father.

In the absence of positive factors, affection and helping witnesses, the only course open to the mistreated individual seems to be the denial of personal suffering and the idealization of cruelty with all its devastating after-effects. Undergoing an exceedingly humiliating and cruel upbringing at the pre-verbal stage without helping witnesses may instill into the victim admiration of this cruelty if there is no one in the immediate vicinity of the child to query those methods and stand up for humane values.

Therefore it didn’t surprise me that in the childhood of people who later became dictators, I have always found a nightmarish horror, a record of continued lies and humiliations, which, upon the attainment of adulthood, impelled them to acts of merciless revenge on society. These vengeful acts were always garbed in hypocritical ideologies, purporting that the dictator’s exclusive and overriding wish was the happiness of his people. In this way, he unconsciously emulated his own parents who, in earlier days, had also insisted that their blows were inflicted on the child for his own good.

In the lives of all the tyrants I analyzed, I also found without exception paranoid trains of thought bound up with their biographies in early childhood and the repression of the experiences they had been through. Mao had been regularly whipped by his father and later sent 30 million people to their deaths but he hardly ever admitted the full extent of the rage he must have felt for his own father, a very severe teacher who had tried through beatings to “make a man” out of his son. Stalin caused millions to suffer and die because even at the height of his power his actions were determined by unconscious, infantile fear of powerlessness. Apparently his father, a poor cobbler from Georgia, attempted to drown his frustration with liquor and whipped his son almost every day. His mother displayed psychotic traits, was completely incapable of defending her son and was usually away from home either praying in church or running the priest’s household. Stalin idealized his parents right up to the end of his life and was constantly haunted by the fear of dangers, dangers that had long since ceased to exist but were still present in his deranged mind. His fear didn’t even stop after he had been loved and admired by millions.

The same might be true of many other tyrants. They often drew on ideologies to disguise the truth and their own paranoia. And the masses chimed in enthusiastically because they were unaware of the real motives, including those in their own biographies. The infantile revenge fantasies of individuals would be of no account if society did not regularly show such naive eagerness in helping to make them come true. Mad tyrants would not have any power if society understood that it is their damaged brains which are constantly driving them to avoid dangers that no longer exist.

Naturally, my references to Schreber and his methods are not sufficient to explain the history of the Holocaust but they do explain a lot. However, in no way should this explanation lead to an exoneration of the perpetrators, relieving them of their responsibility by declaring them “sick.” No upbringing, however cruel, is a license for murder. But blaming the whole thing on a defective genetic blueprint doesn’t make much sense either. As I asked before: Why should there have been so many people born in Germany thirty or forty years before the Holocaust with such a fateful genetic disposition? I do not know of any gene researcher who would try to answer this question. It is quite absurd to assume that some people are born with the genetic program to later become anti-Semites, racists, lynchers or rapists. The almost total neglect or trivialization of the infancy factor in the context of violence sometimes leads to explanations that are not only unconvincing and abortive but which actively deflect attention away from the genuine roots of violence.

Also, the existence of exceptions showed again and again that propaganda and manipulation at school alone were not sufficient to transform people into mass murderers. Only men and women who had experienced mental and physical cruelty in the first weeks and months of life and had been shown no love at all could possibly have let themselves be made into Hitler’s willing executioners. As Goldhagen’s archive material shows, they needed almost no ideological indoctrination because their bodies knew exactly what they wanted to do as soon as they were allowed to follow their inclinations. And as the Jews, young or old, had been declared non-persons, there was nothing to stop them indulging those inclinations. But no amount of indoctrination alone, at school or wherever, will unleash hatred in a person who has no preconditions in that direction. It is well known that there were also Germans, like Karl Jaspers, Hermann Hesse and Thomas Mann, who immediately recognized the declaration that Jews were non-persons as an alarm signal and the rallying cry of untrammeled barbarism.

Doubtless there are people who grew up with loving and protecting parents who could later find a kind, sympathetic partner, could organize their life and become good parents, even if they had to go through the horror of a concentration camp during their adolescence. On the other hand, the lives of many were broken, even without catastrophic experiences in their later life. They just couldn’t find the way to liberate themselves from their old fears, never identified as such. From many cases of survivors I learned that it was the quality of their infancy that determined the way they overcame later threats, including the Holocaust.

Adults who grew up without helping witnesses need the support and assistance of enlightened witnesses, of people who are well aware of the dynamics of child abuse, people who can help them to take their feelings seriously, understand them and integrate them, as part of their own story. In an informed society, adolescents will have the luck to talk to others about their early experiences. They will be able to verbalize their truth and to discover themselves in their own story, their own tragedy, without avenging themselves violently for their wounds, or to poison their systems with drugs.

I have wrongly been attributed to the thesis according to which every victim inevitably becomes a persecutor, a thesis that I find totally false, indeed absurd. To say that every cow is an animal doesn’t include the statement that every animal is a cow. It has been proved that many adults have had the good fortune to break the cycle of abuse. Yet I can certainly aver that I have never come across persecutors who weren’t themselves victims in their childhood, though most of them don’t know it because their feelings are repressed. The less these criminals know about themselves, the more dangerous they are to society. So I think it is crucial to grasp the difference between the statement, “every victim becomes a persecutor,” which is wrong, and the statement, “every persecutor was a victim in his childhood,” which I consider true. The problem is that, feeling nothing, he remembers nothing, realizes nothing, and this is why surveys don’t always reveal the truth. Yet the presence of a warm, enlightened witness … therapist, social worker, lawyer, judge … can help the criminal unlock his repressed feelings and restore the unrestricted flow of consciousness. This can initiate the process of escape from the vicious circle of amnesia and violence.

Read more >>

 Posted by at 8:32 pm  Comments Off on The Devastating Consequences of Childhood Traumas