Disturbing Experience: Was looking for a meditation class...but think i ended up at a Cult recruitment event

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starzzzzz

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#1
Disturbing Experience: Was looking for a meditation class...but think i ended up at a Cult recruitment event

Over the last few weeks I have been reading about mindfulness and doing a daily mindfulness meditation. It has been brilliant for me. I’m having CBT aswell and have had a change of medication and mentally I’m better than I have been for years. I’m trying to work on my social anxiety now so I’m looking for things to do in my spare time. This led me to do an internet search for meditation classes in my city. I found an advert for free weekly meditation classes run by a charity. I thought it looked great and went long to the class last week.

It was so disturbing. This is what happened:

There were about 25 people there. Half of them ‘new’ like me and half of them experienced. First they played some very relaxing music and then we were given a talk about the meditation. They showed a diagram of energy centres in the body. They talked about an energy at the base of the spine which can be released via meditation. Apparently during the meditation the energy rises through the body and bursts out of your skull. Apparently this causes a cool breeze over your head and you reach a state of ‘self-realisation’.

Apparently a lady, they refer to as the divine ‘Mother’ came up with this idea. She spent her life providing the free meditation around the world, because she is such a good person. She died a few years ago. They said it was not a religious thing. Everyone there seemed really nice, friendly and normal. They then played a soundtrack of the divine ‘Mother’ giving a talk to her ‘followers’. It was difficult to understand her accent and required a lot of concentration.

Then one of the women led us into a guided meditation. There was a photo of ‘mother’ at the front of the room. There was also a candle and burning incense. We were told to always meditate in front of ‘Mother’s’ picture. For the meditation we had to put one hand on the lap with open palms towards mother’s picture. The other hand we had to move to various parts of the body during the meditation while the woman doing the meditation was saying things like “Mother the spirit is within me” “Mother allow me to forgive myself”. I felt a bit uncomfortable but I totally went along with it….hoping to achieve the state of self-realisation. I actually believed that my energy would burst through my skull and I would feel the cool breeze on my head.

When she finished we had to keep our eyes closed and listen to more of the relaxing music. The experienced members of the group then got up and walked around standing behind the newcomers making strange hand movements which supposedly would help the newbies to reach self-realisation. By this point I had one eye open and was wondering what was going on.

At the end of the session, one of the experienced members came to talk to me. She told me how wonderful the practice was and how it had saved her from her drug addiction. She asked me questions about myself….like she was looking for my vulnerabilities. She insisted I took a photo of ‘Mother’ home with me and told me to meditate to it twice a day. And gave me written instructions about how to do the meditations. She said that if I go next week she will bring some incense sticks as a gift for me.

The whole thing seemed a bit strange. When I got home I wanted to throw the photo and instructions in the bin but I felt like something bad would happen to me if I did. I googled it and found out that this organisation is alledgedly a religious cult – disguised as a meditation group. They offer ‘free meditation classes’ to recruit new members. I have read alot about the beliefs of the orgnisation, and how they hide these beliefs from new members until they are hooked into it.

I have done a bit more reading about cults and I believe the whole meditation thing was a form of hypnosis. I can’t understand why I went along with it. I believe I was hypnotised. I feel a bit exploited that they managed to get me to go along with it. Also, angry that they are trying to prey on vulnerable people. What they do in these classes is very powerful and I can definitely see how people will be drawn in to it. They are advertising this free meditation all around the UK. I’m worried for other people that might get drawn in to it. And I’m upset for myself but also, glad that I wont be going back there. I'd like to write the name of the organisation on here, to warn others....but I have read reports on the internet that they can be violent to people who challenge their beliefs. I'm scared! :eek2:
 
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-Phoenix-

-Phoenix-

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Oct 13, 2011
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#2
Hi SnowWhite,

That definitely sounds like a cult to me, and they're using mindfulness to reel people in. I feel sorry for all the vulnerable people who get drawn in by these loonies. My advice would be to steer clear.
 
burt tomato

burt tomato

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#3
Yeah could be a cult. Good job you were on your guard - and sussed it out.
 
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sunseticmonster

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Oct 26, 2016
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#4
Me too!

The same thing happened to me a few years ago! I went a couple of times and really liked the meditation part but then that shrine to the woman at the end... I'm like whaaaaatt?? I started a google search about the type of meditation and it immediately popped up _______?____ Meditation Cult in the google search as a suggestion. Well, I started clicking around and, yes, cult!

But I can't remember the name of it! I want to show "The Woman" to my friends since "I almost joined a cult once" is a great little story. Do you recall the name of the type of meditation/yoga this was?

The location near me was 3 blocks from my apartment at the time in Astoria, Queens (NYC) in the basement of some church or cultural center or something. We all sat in those metal chairs with red fabric on them facing that shrine to that grinning lady. CREEPY!!
 
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sunseticmonster

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Oct 26, 2016
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#5
Guarantee you they won't do anything to you. If private messaging is an option on here though, please send me the name of the "organization!" They don't scare me . . .
 
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