Gee, it looks like I may be getting dragged into an argument of some sorts. I prefer to not be involved.
I will just respond to JP’s question. Sorry to be slow to respond.
JP: In the interim, I've a couple of questions for you so I know what to share. Are you familiar with the concepts of:
- Cognitive Dissonance?
- Confirmation Bias?
- Asch Conformity Experiment?
Also, what do you mean by "street-wise"?
- The work of Leon Festinger?
Dealing with each in turn:
1 and 4. I only became aware of Leon Festinger and cognitive dissonance around 3 years ago, via a Theremin Trees video. It was an eye-opener. I realised I used to observe cognitive dissonance long before, but never had a name for it. An extreme example: years ago I remember shopping with a girlfriend and selecting a shampoo brand. Girlfriend overruled me and picked another and said this one has a nicer advert. (Yes, there was a very nice and moving romantic advert running for that other brand at the time. It was a crap product.) I consider that an extreme example of emotion clashing with and overriding intellect.
2. I think most people who have been reading sites such as these will be familiar with confirmation bias.
3. I don’t know what the Asch conformity experiment is.
What do I mean by street-wise? Some people are naturally (or brought up to be) suspicious or looking for motives for the behaviour of those that interact with them; particularly those that approach them. Street wise people sense and dislike being love bombed, for example.
Actually, I think we are slightly at cross purposes. I was thinking more about someone walking away after early contact with the cult, where as (in retrospect) I think you are referring to someone inside, who eventually works out it is not the truth. Hence your reference to moral integrity, which I didn’t initially understand.