Are you being brainwashed? In a post by Stella Morabito (see source below, it is worth the read), she tells the story of Patricia Hearst, who within two months was brainwashed into a totally different person. There were a number of things that she went through but here are some of the techniques her kidnappers (“Symbionese Liberation Army”) used:
- Formed a cycle of “…isolation, threats, and humiliation, punctuated by a little peace (reward) for compliance [this] broke down Hearst’s sense of self.” She lost freewill.
- “stimulated in her an overwhelming sense of dependency”
Marabito goes on and notes what Singer, a psychiatrists who eventually became involved with Patricia’s recovery, says on how people are brainwashed:
- “Keep the person unaware that there is an agenda to control or change the person and their thoughts”
- “Control time and physical environment”
- “Create a sense of powerlessness, fear, and dependency”
- “Suppress old behavior and attitudes”
- “Instill new behavior and attitudes”
- “Put forth a closed system of logic”
The following are things that people use to brainwash groups of people. These are used by governments, social group leaders, some religious leaders and many charismatic leaders. Sadly these work, usually for devious outcomes.
- “The atmosphere of coercion is reinforced by peer-modeled behavior.” This is the good old peer pressure technique. Go into any group gathering or school and you will see this in practice.
- “…you are exposed to a slogan often enough, you will repeat it, even if you don’t understand what it means.” I’m convinced that this point alone is very dangerous. There are many slogans that may have some good and some truth, however, many that are used are used for devious purposes and used to shut people up and stop questions from being asked.
- “…a climate in which the agenda is seen as an elitist movement for those who are enlightened. Those who oppose the agenda are labeled as lesser beings.” Usually this is not stated outright, but a culture of ignoring one or placing one at a lower level with a derogatory label is often used.
- “collective belief formation –describing how implausible opinions can be manufactured through a system of social/reputational punishments and rewards.” Even illogical conclusions are twisted to sound logical. If one dissents, one is punished.
So what are the best ways to protect yourself? Again, Marabito gives some tips to prepare yourself and help guard against mass brainwashing:
- “techniques ‘should be studied and revealed so that citizens can be taught countermeasures in order to avoid being exploited by such groups.'” In other words, know the techniques.
- “Education, information and vigilance are constantly needed if we are to keep us, and our minds, free.” The more you know the truth, stronger you will be.
- Expand your “one-on-one personal relationships and conversations. This is where our power lies…” Form connections. You will find you are not alone in your defense.
- “…remaining silent about our beliefs when we are being abused is that we actually dig our own hole deeper. Every dissenter feels alone, perhaps even in a roomful of dissenters. Every fence sitter resigns himself to signing on with the perceived ‘majority.'” In other words, speak!
- “When unanimity is punctured, the group’s power is greatly reduced.” The power here lies in the fact that when there is an outcry, the brainwasher’s loses some of the control.
In your life watch out for others pressuring you to keep quiet, telling you not talk to others about topics, discouraging you from asking questions, the use catch phrases used without definitions given and “norms” that you are expected to hold to even if they make no sense. Be concerned if your pursuit of knowledge and information is discouraged against. Use the tools given here to prepare yourself for the war on your mind. Know the truth, gain knowledge, ask questions, talk to others and understand the techniques people use to brainwash others. Last but not least, pray for wisdom and discernment!
All quotes came from the following source: http://thefederalist.com/2014/04/15/cults-in-our-midst-patty-hearst-and-the-brainwashing-of-america/