Monday, April 6, 2009

I Will Dance Again...

A friend and I recently spoke of the 'conditioning' that sometimes lies subtly dormant in the minds of ex-cult members.
Conditioning being, according to the encyclopedia Britannica:

"Conditioning is a form of learning in which...a given stimulus...becomes increasingly effective in evoking a response... a response occurs with increasing regularity..."
Any questioning of the authority in a Dade City cult elicited sharp and swift consequences. The 'errant' member had 'touched God's anointed mouth piece' according to the cult leader. Public humiliation in church services were the effective tool in 'evoking' a response'.
Who wanted to to be held up as an example of shame in the midst of their peers? Silence was safe; so "a response occurs with increasing regularity" was the silent submission to the cult leader's will.
Now, as we voice loudly and often our dissent with the abusive practices, a 'knee-jerk' conditioning trigger hops in the way of the stretching of our atrophied muscles of speaking aloud wrongs committed.
However, we shan't be stopped in our dance of freedom. We speak the truth, in the faith of God's love, extended even to the flagrant abuser, and dance in the gladness of truth.
We even hope, should God be merciful, that the abuser finds themselves dancing to tune of God-given freedom and mercy.
A fearful, 'conditioned' muscle might put a slight crimp in our joyous bound, but we dance to the words of truth anyway.
Because truly, only by speaking out will the abuse's effectiveness be silenced.
As only by stretching and dancing will the stiff muscle become limber and supple once more.
image by Adegrazia in photobucket


Provender said...

It's important to speak out for several reasons. When you live in fear for so long, you need to resist fear, and speaking out is one strong way to do that. Also, when you're in a system living under the "can't talk" rule, you suppress so much, and it's important to get out from under that. Speaking out is the best way. You've been taught that anything you say against the abuse is gossip and evil and you've been crushed down by these "don't talk" unwritten rules, that when you are out you still tend to follow them. In order to break through these unspoken, unwritten barriers that still oppress you, you've got to speak.

The Cult Next Door said...

So, so true!
The 'don't talk' rule is so powerful-

Anonymous said...

i have to agree with you on this--and thanks for sharing.