Undue Influence

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Undue Influence

Post by fluffy bunny » 29 Nov 2007

I wanted to jot down some notes about "undue influence", a legal term under which ex-BKWSU may be able to find some re-dress for the mental conditioning/abuse they have suffered during their time in the organization. Although the legal debate of whether there was or was not 'undue influence' or 'coercive persuasion' belongs to legal professionals, and will vary from country to country, the principles remain the same. Perhaps, we could discuss whether and how such influence takes place within the organization to help others, and our feelings towards taking such actions.

Undue influence takes place when a person to commit a deed that he or she would not have done normally. This protection and redress at law not only relate to living individuals but also to wills of deceased individuals who suffered in such a way.

Interestingly, in at least English Law where there are claims of undue influence against religious organizations, it is presumed in the first place that there WAS undue influence and the responsibility is automatically placed on religious organization to prove that there WAS NOT undue influence. I find it VERY hard to believe that the BKWSU could ever hope to defend itself in a court of law. See, class 2 cases below.

A person who has been induced to enter into a transaction (e.g., a gift, contract or guarantee) by the undue influence of another (the wrongdoer) is entitled to set that transaction aside as against the wrongdoer.

Undue influence has been defined in English law as 'the unconscientious use by one person of power possessed by him over another in order to induce the other to enter into a contract'. It also extends not just to individuals and families but also to unrepresentative and political bodies. The public at large is barely aware that our democracies are being reshaped by non-elected bodies, such as the BKWSU, whose principal loyalty is to their religion and yet have become involved in the political processes influencing even the delivery of public services such as healthcare or education (GRC/Janki Foundation, Living Values etc).

Different classes of undue influence;

CLASS 1: ACTUAL UNDUE INFLUENCE

In these cases it is necessary for the claimant to prove affirmatively that the wrongdoer exerted undue influence on the complainant to enter into the particular transaction which is impugned.

CLASS 2: PRESUMED UNDUE INFLUENCE

In these cases the complainant only has to show, in the first instance, that there was a relationship of trust and confidence between the complainant and the wrongdoer of such a nature that it is fair to presume that the wrongdoer abused that relationship in procuring the complainant to enter the impugned transaction.

In class 2 cases therefore, there is no need to produce evidence that actual undue influence was exerted in relation to the particular transaction impugned: once a confidential relationship has been proved, the burden then shifts to the wrongdoer to prove that the complainant entered into the impugned transaction freely, for example by showing that the complainant had independent advice.

Note that it must also be shown that the transaction was manifestly disadvantageous to the party alleged to be influenced.

Such a confidential relationship can be established in two ways:

CLASS 2A

Certain relationships as a matter of law raise the presumption that undue influence has been exercised. The relationships where undue influence is presumed have been held to be; e.g. trustee & beneficiary and religious adviser & disciple.

CLASS 2B

If the complainant proves the existence of a relationship under which the complainant generally reposed trust and confidence in the wrongdoer, the existence of such relationship raises the presumption of undue influence.

'Undue influence' is probably the least misleading of the various terms which have been used to denote the manipulative techniques used by cults. The problem remains that these techniques are quite clever and subtle, and very difficult to explain satisfactorily to anyone who has not themselves experienced being in a cult. Consequently, critical ex-cult members are often not taken seriously when they try to communicate their concerns. Many ex-members experience prejudice and misunderstanding when they try to explain to the wider world how cults work and the dangers they pose. Which in turn makes it easier for cults to thrive. 'Undue influence' could extend over other areas of a person's life, to the extent that, in some cases, they leave their family and job and end up working full-time for the cult, effectively becoming servants of the cult.

For discussion of one such case;

http://www.csj.org/infoserv_articles/le ... r_suit.htm

If we correlate this to discussion of undue influence in new religious movements;
1) Mind control (undue influence) - Manipulation by use of coercive persuasion or
behavior modification techniques without informed consent.
2) Charismatic leadership - claiming divinity or special knowledge and demanding
unquestioning obediance with power and privilege.
3) Deception-recruiting and fund raising with hidden objectives and without full
disclosure of the use of mind controlling techniques; use of front groups.
4) Exclusivity - Secretiveness or vagueness by followers regarding activities and
beliefs.
5) Alienation - Separation from family, friends and society, a change in values and
substitution of the cult as the new family; evidence of subtle or abrupt personality
changes.
6) Exploitation - Can be financial, physical, or psychological.
7) Totalitarian Worldview (we/they syndrome) - Effecting dependence, promoting goals
of the group over the individual and approving unethical behavior while claiming
How does our experience add up?

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Post by bro neo » 30 Nov 2007

8)

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repent!

Post by alladin » 30 Nov 2007

I received, and therefore share, some notes from class of sister Waddy from Miami (famous Dharamraj, lawful strict soul, former old days Tennyson Rd sister, elevated and serviceable example to be followed - possibly!).

Nov.19. Global House London right from the auditorium stage!

"Obey to DJ. She catches what is in your heart, like a surgeon. She picks up what is in your heart that you are not even aware of, she picks up what's your energy and tells you what you need. She keeps in front of you the mirror of self realization and helps you move forward from stagnation. Tell the truth in front of the gathering (BB 's system of "holding court"), so you will not make the same mistake again. It is the same as a confession: merge what happened with no embarrassment and become clean. Understand karma deeply and retain only the real thing. Do not spread defamation."

I don't want to post many comments, I just think that in few sentences, any intelligent, alert and objective person can spot several points that would fall into the category of undue influence. A person that is given place on the stage by Jayanti, as I was told, to deliver such a manipulative speech, a Senior Sister like Waddy that utters only approved by the BK government golden nectar-like accurate words, can definitely influence an audience. Especially young BKs. Total trust in the guru leading to a critical obedience, fear, shame. Enough?

And stuff similar to this goes on every day. Penetrates people's ears and minds. Not only the instructions given by the Holy Spook always bring benefit, but what SS tell you to do is always leading your life to happiness and perfection. Some may doubt, especially when things don't work out very well or prove difficult and painful. But no questioning allowed, if you want to belong to the sect.

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Re: repent!

Post by fluffy bunny » 01 Dec 2007

alladin wrote:"Obey to DJ."
"Obey to Dadi Janki" or "Obey Dadi Janki"? Dare I say it ... do we have a Murli point on that?

I suppose it is a good idea where one has an army of monkeys to deal with. It will be interesting to hear of or know the changes that happen now the old cornershop has a new boss.

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Post by trinity » 01 Dec 2007

... I am penetrating deep into your subconscious mind ... Everything I am thinking, you will now begin to think as well ...

The BKWSU uses people, they lie and pretend to be lovely ... They are NOT!!!

You are lovely, I am lovely So get out while you can (if you are still in) because you can and enjoy your life instead of trying to make effort for a flying car or make babies by Yoga ... who then will be born legs first and can walk and talk from day one.

It is all a joke!

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Post by mr green » 01 Dec 2007

Even if what (Barracuda) Waddi says about DJ is true, DJ is still ruled by the trustees ... Ultimately, it seems Shrimat comes from them ... they must be really powerful and insightful 8).

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Post by eromain » 05 Dec 2007

Wow,

When an organisation uses sleep deprivation, social deprivation, cultural isolation and daily psychological techniques that are indistinguishable from hypnosis and self-hypnosis the question has to be not is some of its income derived with undue influence, but rather is there any of its income that is not?

I am a bit surprised but very encouraged that the law is so enlightened in respect of religions and this issue.

It would appear that a test case of such an issue would have a good chance of winning.

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Post by paulkershaw » 06 Dec 2007

Idol worship is the same in any organisation, even if the idol is alive or only a stone statue. When one WANTS to become your idol, the willingness to surrender to the idols influence will over-rule everything and anything.

We should perhaps not be questioning the 'Undue Influence' but HOW people become so WILLING to be influenced.

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Post by fluffy bunny » 06 Dec 2007

I just wanted to emphasise what I wrote here.

In cases where religion in involved, undue influence is presumed to be in the first place. Therefore, it is for the leaders to prove that it did not take place, i.e. that they encouraged an individual to take independent financial or legal advise before following their "guidance".

That is "guidance" as in guidance towards Baba's box or signing the corporate Will etc.

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Post by eromain » 06 Dec 2007

ex-l

That just blows my mind, since when did the world get so enlightened?

A group like the BKs are so vulnerable to falling foul of that law! It is a shame that they have so recently set the precedent of referring to the courts in cases of dispute. :-)

Eugene

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Post by eromain » 06 Dec 2007

She picks up what is in your heart that you are not even aware of, she picks up what's your energy and tells you what you need.

Attributed to Waddy

I do not know if Sr Waddy said this or not, so i want to make that clear from the outset, but whoever said it, if they were an experienced and authoritative BK, really should not be saying such things.

In my time, I saw many inexperienced BKs who simply did not know how to relate to the Dadis and who ended up "misusing" them and being "misused" by them. Frequently there was complete goodwill on both sides but the essential way of relating was so dysfunctional from the start that a poor outcome was virtually guaranteed. Often this was caused by some "middle-manager" training the inexperienced BK to treat the Dadis like a guru. The absolute worse thing one can do is sit there and think the Dadis have some kind of X-ray vision - what a load of hogwash.

I was very grateful to Aiden, who in about 1979, really taught me to take the responsibility to represent myself fully and properly when with Dadi, and I soon learned that when I did so she ended up getting much more information about me and she could make much more intelligent comments and advice. Sometimes I corrected her initial conclusions and sometimes I corrected her final conclusions because sometimes like all human beings she made mistakes. Frquently she was right, indeed most of the time, but ultimately like all relationships it relied on two way give and take to be successful. Certainly I saw her up close enough to know that all that talk about her being perfect was utter claptrap, but I respected her more for that, not less.

Any experienced BK, anyone who is allowed anywhere near the guddi should know that relating to the Seniors requires intelligence and self-respect, turning up like a 3 year old about to meet Santa is a recipe for disaster. Whoever said the words above, and I have no doubt they were said by a BK, I just hope it wasnt anyone as experienced as Waddy, is misrepresenting Dadi and really disserving the students she is trying to teach. It is an abuse of trust and the very epitomy of undue influence.

If the BK leadership condascended to talk to us we could point out to the them the ways in which sloppy teaching (however well intentioned) plays itself out in toxic ways amongst those students who ultimately are more likely to end up with us shudras (dumbfucks) than in the hallowed halls of the 108. Attributing magical powers to the Seniors is just one of many things that are not intrinsic to pure BK teachings and which there are very good arguments for them ceasing.

And it does Dadi no credit at all that she has failed to stamp out such silly talk about herself.

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Post by fluffy bunny » 07 Dec 2007

She picks up what is in your heart that you are not even aware of, she picks up what's your energy and tells you what you need.
eromain wrote:I do not know if Sr Waddy said this or not, so I want to make that clear from the outset, but whoever said it, if they were an experienced and authoritative BK, really should not be saying such things ... anyone who is allowed anywhere near the guddi should know that relating to the Seniors requires intelligence and self-respect, turning up like a 3 year old about to meet Santa is a recipe for disaster.
I can only add that, in my experience, this impression has been prevalent for the last 20 years or more and I take it in trust that the above reporting was accurate. Genealogically, within the West, I think it really was middle management like Waddy, Maureen Goodman and others who are self-confessed Dadi bhagats, that put this mode of thought, this meme, out into the BK community as a whole ... polluting it.

I can remembering being told exactly the same that the Dadis could "see me, the soul" and being impressed by infatuated (and possible fearful) center-in-charges about their mystical powers. Another, of course, being their ability to travel around BK centers at Amrit Vela in their subtle bodies and checking on the 'sins' or stages of students. I have never heard the Dadis themselves say anything to dispel, or otherwise, these myths.

There is no doubt that anyone who has to listen to other people's **** day in/day out gets better at giving advice than someone who lives in their own, little bubble. Any there is nothing like living at the top of an organization of 1,000 to teach you little about politics. I think your Santa or guru analogy works very well. But my main caveat would be to remind individuals that they do not alway consider JUST your own personal spiritual benefit ... just as often the Dadis have one eye on the interests of the organization over and above any individual. For example, Seniors have been known to forward personal letters to local center-in-charges and share private personal information.

Adding to which the track record for institutional secrecy and dishonesty ...

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Post by joel » 07 Dec 2007

BK Waddy spoke not wrote:She picks up what is in your heart that you are not even aware of, she picks up what's your energy and tells you what you need.
eromain wrote:Attributed to Waddy ... I do not know if Sr Waddy said this or not, so I want to make that clear from the outset, but whoever said it, if they were an experienced and authoritative BK, really should not be saying such things.
At the same time, I also think that asserting the power of a 'higher soul' to know what is in your heart is absolutely consistent with the tradition of this institution from the beginning at the time of Brahma Baba. Either Brahma Baba knew, or Shiva--who is all-knowing--acted through Brahma Baba. Either way, encountering This One brought a potency that we believed could radically transform our lives, first through knowledge, then through relationship.

Corresponding with the CUT trial account linked above (without the enemas ...) are confession, revealing oneself's secrets in front of Seniors, and the tribunal, revealing oneself in front of a judmental gathering that is characterized as an unconditionally accepting family love manifesting as law in service of one's personal growth.

The eager new recruit soon learns to use the religious jargon of "Dharam Raj" casually. Repeated utterances of accepted terminology serve to elicit validation from other members, often in the form of in-depth explanations of the terms that frequently include stories of the early days of the Yagya (BK spiritual family). In these stories, behaviors relating to the concept at hand (love, law, knowlege, yukti - meaning method, trick or technique - were modeled under the blinding illumination of God's direct presence.

As an essentially obedient BK and center leader, I had my ear at the mouth of my immediate senior Sr. Rajni. She would characterize certain individuals to me as well as a large proportion of adherents of Hindu descent as being 'Bhagat Souls'. To these souls it was enough to appear divine, to give them a vision, in BK jargon. These people wanted to idealize us, to project their need for benificient angels on us. They did not want to see that we BKs had fears and frustrations like everyone else. By relating diplomatically and judiciously, we could find ways for the devotee-minded to gratify their charitable urges by contributing to BK activities. This was the genius of Seniors like Dadi Kumarka and Dadi Janki, who she explained, had helped many to 'create their fortune' by assisting the group in some way.

The encouragement to give money to the BKs is strong even when polite and diplomatic. The inducement to confide private and personal matters, and to seek out advice from senior group members (sometimes a new recruit himself) was deeply entrenched in the group during my tenure. I think that Aiden could have guided you to an adult relationship with Dadi Janki places you among a small but significant number of high-achieving people who maintain their private integrity while helping the group in a large capacity, whether as BK or 'cooperative soul'.

The pressure to express one's affiliation to the BKs by revealing secrets is powerful, especially when the confessors are presented as well along on the path to being benevolent angels, those without personal interest and seeking only to serve. Within this characterization of oneself, a lie is deeply embedded: As embodied beings we all have our own priorities. It can never be otherwise.

How is the pressure to confess encoded as love? 'Keep your chart. The Lord is pleased with an honest heart." So we are told. But to whom are we likely to show our chart? Obviously to people who use the same concepts and jargon. Who have the same culture. 'Cult' is of the same root as culture, and suggests the same process of gradual assimiliation and conditioning to the point of being an integral part of oneself, as it was to Gregory Mull, whose mental and physical health was shattered by his cult experiences.
When an organisation uses sleep deprivation, social deprivation, cultural isolation and daily psychological techniques that are indistinguishable from hypnosis and self-hypnosis the question has to be not is some of its income derived with undue influence, but rather is there any of its income that is not?
eromain, these lines may rival Mr. Green's productions for the most trenchant observations in the history of our forums.

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Post by paulkershaw » 11 Jan 2008

ex-l wrote: Another, of course, being their ability to travel around BK centers at Amrit Vela in their subtle bodies and checking on the 'sins' or stages of students. I have never heard the Dadis themselves say anything to dispel, or otherwise, these myths.
Just for the record, I have experienced Dadi Janki's 'spirit' visiting me in the early mornings.

We must, of course, remember that there's also different time-lines around the world. If she's doing this at (let's say...) her Amrit Vela time, it may not be at the same time as anyone else sitting at that time; so it brings up another question (and theory) about her being able to work in different spiritual dimensions and time-frames ...

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The practice of letter writing to Baba

Post by yogi108 » 11 Jan 2008

Again another practice followed quite religiously by many practicing BKs ...
  • 1. Does anyone know what happens to these letters in Madhuban?
    2. I have seen in front of my own eyes (a sister-in-charge was handed a letter by a student which she had written to Bap-Dada. She promptly opened and read the letter once the student left, and all this was happening in front of a few other students).
    3. Does Bap-Dada really need letters from the soul ... in many Murli's he says that even whilst you are writing the letter, Bap-Dada knows what you are writing. And lo in the next morning's Murli, you get an answer to your question!!! What a way to prove that, "Yes, it is God speaking".
Just want some of your thoughts and insights to this particular aspect from Yagya's perspectives.

Yogi

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