Freedom of Mind: Helping Loved Ones Leave Controlling People, Cults, and Beliefs. Paperback by Steven Hassan.
In the post 911 world, people are more susceptible than ever to charismatic figures who offer simple, black v. white, us v. them, good v. evil, formulaic solutions. The rise of the Internet; increasingly sophisticated knowledge about how to influence and manipulate others; and the growing vulnerabilities of people across the planet—make for a dangerous, potentially devastating combination. Steven Hassan’s new book Freedom of Mind provides the knowledge and awareness needed to help yourself and loved ones avoid or escape from such dangerous people and situations. This must-read volume is a significantly updated and revised edition of Hassan’s groundbreaking Releasing the Bonds (2000). People who read and benefitted from that book—and also his earlier book, Combatting Cult Mind Control (1989)—will want to read Hassan’s latest. It provides an up-to-the-minute guide to the reality of ‘undue influence’—the preferred term for mind control—in the post 9/11 era. Unstable Global Environment Enhances Dangers of Unethical Control The world has changed greatly in the last decade. The rise of the Internet, the emergence of global terrorism and of dangerous totalistic ideologies, and the shifts in global markets—these and other changes have created new opportunities for unscrupulous individuals, groups, and institutions to exert unethical control over others. Freedom of Mind exposes the techniques and methods that individuals, cults, and institutions of all types—religious, business, therapeutic, educational, governmental—use to undo a person’s capacity to think and act independently. Individuals More Vulnerable than Ever The Internet is now the primary vehicle for recruitment and indoctrination. It is also a means for spreading sophisticated information about social psychology, hypnosis, and other techniques of social control, which are being used—in ways both effective and dangerous—by ‘influence professionals.’ Meanwhile, people are becoming increasingly vulnerable. Sleep-deprived, overweight and looking to improve themselves, overloaded with often frightening images and information; anxious about the current economic decline, climate change, and government corruption on all levels. People are more susceptible than ever to charismatic figures who offer simple, black v. white, us v. them, good v. evil, formulaic solutions. These factors—the rise of the Internet; increasingly sophisticated knowledge about how to influence and manipulate others; and the growing vulnerabilities of people across the planet—make for a dangerous, potentially devastating combination. Freedom of Mind Provides Help for Yourself, a Loved One, or a Friend Hassan’s new book, Freedom of Mind, aims to fill the gap. It identifies and explains how to identify and evaluate potentially dangerous groups and individuals. Hassan details his groundbreaking approach, the ‘Strategic Interactive Approach,’ which can be used to help a loved one leave such a situation. Step-by-step, Hassan shows you how to: evaluate the situation; interact with dual identities; develop communication strategies using phone calls, letter writing and visits; understand and utilize cult beliefs and tactics; use reality-testing and other techniques to promote freedom of mind. He emphasizes the value of meeting with trained consultants to be effectively guided and coached and also to plan and implement effective interventions. The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones is knowledge and awareness.