Cults & mind control -What is the best book you've read on these subjects?

by MoeJoJoJo 22 Replies latest jw friends

  • MoeJoJoJo

    What do you recommend? What did you like most about the book? Appreciate any feedback.

  • Satanus

    When prophecy fails by leon festinger, henry riecken, stanley schachter. Some college students infiltrate and report on a wierd cult in the fifties. Quite interesting.

    Soothsayers of the second advent by william alnor. About false fundy prophets.

    Books by cult fighter margaret singer.


  • Brummie

    Steve Hassans "Combatting cult mind control", I like it because it has no bias towards any particular cult and yet is reflective on the damage caused by all.

    My fav: "Captive hearts Captive minds" because it gives various testimonies from cult members and instructions on how to deal with the aftermath of mind control..

    "Twisted Scriptures" by Mary Alic Chrnalogar. Particulary helpful is you are dealing with "christian" cults. Looks at Scriptures they all use to abuse their devotees.


  • DanTheMan

    The True Believer is an excellent book about the dynamics of mass movements.

    I also liked Captive Hearts, Captive Minds. JW's don't get a mention, as a matter of fact JW's may seem pretty tame compared to the bizarre and extremely abusive groups the book discusses. One of my favorite points from the book is that most people who leave cults start out as "walkaway believers". They don't leave because of doubts, their leaving is more because they feel like they are going insane and they need to get away from the group for a while. The doubting/questioning comes later.

  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    Can't pick just one so...

    • Churches That Abuse By Enroth - general info
    • Combatting Cult Mind Control By Steven Hassan - THE book to read
    • Healing Spiritual Abuse By Ken Blue - good recovery info
    • Recovering From Churches That Abuse Ronald Enroth - good recovery info
    • Subtle Power Of Spiritual Abuse By Johnson & Vanvonderen
    • Thirty Years a Watchtower Slave by W. J. Schnell - loved the history - so much seemed to predict exactly where the organization is now
    • Captive Hearts, Captive Minds by Tobias, M.L., & Lalich, J. - wonderful insights
    • Crisis of Conscience (3rd Ed.) by Franz, R. - a real eye-opener
    • In Search of Christian Freedom by Franz, R. - it is the next one on the list
    • Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses by Botting, G. & Botting, H. - fascinating insights
    • AWAKENING OF A JEHOVAH'S WITNESS by D Wilson - a very interesting perspective from a woman's point of view - I could relate to many of her experiences
  • onacruse


    The True Believer is an excellent book about the dynamics of mass movements.

    I agree; it was Hoffer's book that really started me thinking outside the box, especially because it had nothing in particular to do with JWs...just about the general sociological characteristics of development (and demise) of all such high-control groups. I began to see the WTS as just another movement like so many others, rather than as a "special" movement that required unique treatment.


    PS: "movement"...LOL

  • refiners fire
    refiners fire

    There are certain writers who specialize in material of a cultic or religious nature. Michael Barkun is a good example. He has written excellent books about Racist movements and About Millerisn in the 1830s.

    The writings of William Sargant are worth reading. He wrote two major cultic books, "The Mind Possessed" and "Battle for the mind". Battle for the mind is especially interesting readsing regarding conversion processes.

    Robert J Lifton, Norman Cohn and Arthur Koestler have all written numerous books that Dubs would find interesting.

  • MoeJoJoJo

    Thank you all for your responses! I'm going to see if the local library has any of your recommendations.

    I've read alot of articles on the net dealing with cult mind control but I wanted to get a good book.

    A JW from my old hall is one of the librarians at my local library, I'll have to go when she's working; maybe she will be a little nosy and check out what I'm reading and have a look for herself.

    I'm also hoping to find one, that I think my JW mom would read, hopefully she might be open-minded enough.

  • searchfothetruth

    All Ex-JW's should have a copy of 'Crisis of Concience' by Raymond Franz. I know it sounds pretty obvious but this book is THE BEST book on the society and if you can get a witness to read it i'm sure it will have an impact.

    I've just bought a few copies from amazon and given them to witnesses I have been speaking to. The new fourth edition mentions the UN but is definately the best book to read to affirm that we were right to leave this selfish and manipulative organisation.

    Raymond Franz deserves credit for the courage and the commitment to letting people know what really went on behind the scenes. This book changed my life more than any other book, my suspicions were not only correct but were by far worse than ever imagined.

  • rocketman

    I've been reading The Four Major Cults" by Anthony Hoekema, publised in 1963. Very interesting reading as he identifies various cult charactaristics whiich fit jws, mormons, seventh-day adventists, and christian science to a tee. He makes a compelling case that jwism displaysseveral well-known cult traits, including extra-scriptural authority (bible only understood by means of WTS), the group as exclusive community of the saved (only those in the group gain salvation), and the group's central role in eschatology (the cult is at the center of the climax of history and many bible prophiecies are fufilled in reference mainly to the cult).

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