Call For Media and Government Investigation

of Sathya Sai Baba And his worldwide cult, the Sathya Sai Organization

Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters

Posted by Barry Pittard on September 2, 2007

Where a strong belief system is under question, a state psychologists call ‘psychological denial’ kicks in. 

(A standard dictionary definition is given at Dictionary.com:  ‘an unconscious defense mechanism used to reduce anxiety by denying thoughts, feelings, or facts that are consciously intolerable’).   

The results are very remote from commonsense, rigorous self-introspection and self-reappraisal. An irony is that those who   subsequently dissent undergo, prior to their dissent, the same defensiveness that is maintained by those who remain within the cult. By no means does disaffection tend to happen overnight. Some dissenters speak of how they themselves, often for a   considerable time, ignored the ‘warning flags’. There are many dissenter accounts of how they, prior to exit, made a huge effort to restore their faith. One rationalizes, justifies, and clutches at straws.  

On exit from the fold, one experiences the deeply saddening loss of dear friends and colleagues (in many cases of decades) who remain in the fold. When one starts to raise questions, fellow devotees are immediately reactive, and incapable of listening to what is being pointed out. With sheer force of reactiveness, believers make leaps of assumption – those making allegations must be mentally disturbed. Or being paid to cause trouble. Or they are limelight seekers. Or they must have alligned themselves with some other sect. Or be the plaything of forces of darkness. Or be disgruntled, and missed out on the leader’s interviews, or been denied various other   forms of supposed grace and favour. And what right has anyone to criticize the guru especially when the guru himself calls   his dissenters demons? Those who question are either made to shut up or else evicted from the organization. 

It does not count that the attributions made are falsifiable. One may have spent long years in not being a liar, a troublemaker, disgruntled, mentally deranged, hallucinating, etc., but, overnight as it were, one is transformed in the mind of the faith’s adherents into the image of all things dastardly – or at least as a poor misled fool. One is deemed apostate, and a depersonalizion process takes over – and at its extremes demonization. Within the organization, proper, fair, just and reasonable accountability processes are absent. Lost is the fact that many dissenters, all   along, never were of the nature of what devotees now attribute. Memory is lost or suppressed.  

Within the cult – no matter what its claims to be spiritual, loving, etc., commonsense, compassion, a sense of common justice, and common decency in regard to dissenters all shut down. Those who question are often either absolutely turned upon or absolutely ignored.

Further Reading

Wikipedia:

Post-cult trauma

Denial

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10 Responses to “Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters”

  1. […] See a list (by no means exhaustive) of typical depradations of those Sathya Sai Baba forces (and those caught up in other cults) who claim to be involved in spirituality: Dissent From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment. See also, Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

  2. […] From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment Demonization of Dissenters: Evidence of an Internet Activist in Action See On Disinformation and Internet Vandalism Bias […]

  3. […] truths being too shocking to face, and all of its tangled webs of deceit, obfuscation, and inner psychological denial. News of massive cover up travels irrecoverably. There is no wishing it away. No holding of it […]

  4. […] Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

  5. […] Fear of being publicly attacked and ridiculed. See also:  Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

  6. […] Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

  7. […] Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

  8. […] From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment Demonization of Dissenters: Evidence of an Internet Activist in Action See On Disinformation and Internet Vandalism Bias […]

  9. […] From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment Demonization of Dissenters: Evidence of an Internet Activist in Action See On Disinformation and Internet Vandalism Bias […]

  10. […] See a list (by no means exhaustive) of typical depradations of those Sathya Sai Baba forces (and those caught up in other cults) who claim to be involved in spirituality: Dissent From Guru Cults Draws Slander and Harassment. See also, Cultic Depersonalization or Demonization of Dissenters […]

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