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Saturday, July 17, 2010

I've somewhat belatedly posted an additional reply to a comment on one of my posts a few months ago, concerning The Hunger Project. You can read the original post and replies at: http://stripey7.blogspot.com/2010/02/hunger-project-gets-free-ride-on-world.html. The gist is that the very speed with which the comment appeared supports my contentions.

To avoid any misunderstanding, I should acknowledge here that not all Large Group Awareness Trainings -- the general category into which est and its successor, Landmark Forum, fall -- are hardcore cults. Many people have been involved in them at a low level without apparent psychological harm. At the same time, several cases of acute responses to such trainings, involving psychotic breaks and requiring emergency psychiatric medication, have been reported, as described in chapter 13 of the book Recovery from Cults. At the very least, one can say that it appears such groups often fail to have mental health professionals present at trainings who can and will recognize when someone has been adversely affected and will intervene in a timely fashion.

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