Kaiwind.com (October 20, 2010) – On the afternoon of October 12, the founder and Executive Director of the Rick A. Ross Institute (RI) in New Jersey, as well as a famous expert on cultic studies Rick A. Ross went to an ordinary residential community at Sanlihe, Xicheng District, Beijing, meeting with two ex-Falun Gong members and talking about their experiences about Falun Gong. He emphasized the role of families and ex-members during the process of deprogramming.
Mr. Ross expresses the cults in North America and Falun Gong in China have many similarities.
First, imposing on people's mentality of longing for a bright future. Everyone yearns for health, hopes to become a better person and wishes to have a better world. Such sugar-coated bullets are often used as baits to recruit members by cults.
Second, disguising as other sects. Some cults in the United States have different masks. They are under the guise of Christianity, Buddhism, or some form of science, while Falun Gong is in the disguise of Chinese traditional culture and Qigong.
Third, cutting off the outside information sources. Once entering cults, consciously or unconsciously, people will gradually block sources of outside information to form a separate space, which might make them lost the ability to think independently. Although the United States is abundant in information, the cult members are isolated from the outside world completely.
Fourth, cult leaders should not be questioned. If one member questions his leader, he will be criticized by others. In order to avoid criticism and embarrassment, he had to remain silent, and this silence is just what the cult need.
Fifth, controlling cult members by using their self-comfort. It is difficult for some individuals who ever made sacrifices for the group or did a lot of harmful things to others in the name of this group to realize and admit that this group is bad, because they have to face what they have done before. Then they refuse to admit mistakes and console themselves saying that they are not wrong, what they do is for better goals. Many cults control the members and keep them stay by taking advantage of this mentality.
Mr. Ross believes one of the methods to help the cult members quit is to break the closed environment. Li Hongzhi could control other people in an isolated, locked condition, so people can't communicate with the outside. One important way for converting is to contact and exchange information with the outside world, so people can think independently.
Mr. Ross has repeatedly stressed that the folks of the cult members play a key role in helping them quit cults. When Mr. Ross himself communicates with the members of cults, some members would refuse and try to leave, and then the comfort from family members is very important. Because the cult members would like to to accept Mr. Rose's help due to the persuasion and care from their loved ones to a large extent. So he advices that it would be better for the family members to accompany in the communication process.
Mr. Ross says the people who have gotten rid of cults also play an important part in the deprogramming process. For example, only the ex-Falun Gong members know how to use Falun Gong-style language and understand the meaning of the words from Falun Gong members, because they comprehend their mode of discourse.
(Kaiwind.com, October 21, 2010)