"Among the many distortions,...is the statement that 'the normal psychological profile for people involved in cults usually includes overly dependent personalities with weak identities….easily led, who are looking for structure and lack personal goals, often as a result of relationship or career failures.' To the contrary, as the reader will quickly learn,...'Research has shown that most cult members are of above-average intelligence, come from stable backgrounds, and do not have a history of psychological illness.' (Langone:1993/Singer with Lalich:1995/Tobias and Lalich:1994).
'Cult leaders and cult recruiters tend to capture the hearts, minds, and souls of the best and brightest in our society. Cults look for active, productive, intelligent, energetic individuals who will perform for the cult by fund-raising, recruiting more followers, and operating cult-owned businesses or leading cult-related seminars. In the 1960s and 1970s, perhaps, it was more typical for primarily young people to get involved with a cult; this is no longer so. The young and old alike, and everyone in between, are being recruited into a wide array of cultic groups.' (Lalich:1997:5).
- From the Wind of Changes website, which detailed a single family's involvement in the Gentle Wind Project ("GWP") a "spiritual-healing" group that produced and distributed what it characterized as "healing instruments" based on designs communicated from "the spirit world."
Husband and wife, James Bergin and Judy Garvey, left the group and started the "Wind of Changes" website to help others make informed decisions about GWP. On their site, Bergin and Garvey recounted their experiences and described what they characterize as the group's "bizarre" belief systems and practices, including describing GWP as a cult, stating that the GWP "healing instruments" are "snake oil," or reporting the existence of group sexual activities, known to inner-circle members as "energy work." (All of this is typical New Age bullshit; depravity disguised as spiritual activity. A perfect example is what Ronald De Wolf, L. Ron Hubbard's son, once said, "You have complete control of someone if you have every detail of his sex life and fantasy life on record. In Scientology the focus is on sex. Sex, sex, sex.")
A detail of the family's legal wrangling with GWP - which they won - can now be found at Harvard's Berkman Law Center website.
Go - read it - it's wild.