On 10/27/2014 6:10 AM, TurquoiseBee turquoi...@yahoo.com [FairfieldLife] wrote:
Because it's FAITH, dummies. They believe the things they believe without evidence, and without any proof that they're true.
Cognitive dissonance is the mental stress or discomfort experienced by an individual who holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values at the same time.

/"I've seen someone levitate. Many times. In many settings, from the Los Angeles // //Convention Center to the Anza-Borrego Desert to a Denny's restaurant in the wee //
//hours of the night."/ - TurquoiseB

Subject: TM is a Cult?
Author: TurquoiseB
Group: Yahoo Fairfieldife
Date: Friday, 23 May 2014

This is an OK state to live in as long as they are surrounded by people who all believe the same things, with the same absence of evidence. Being surrounded by other believers provides a kind of "insulation" against the cognitive dissonance that might arise if they were forced to address the fact that they believe in things that they can't make a rational case for believing. One of the biggest "draws" of living in a cult community IS this environment of being surrounded by fellow believers, so that this cognitive dissonance never comes up.

But it's the age of the Internet, and unless the believers have their head so far in the sand that they don't ever access it, sooner or later they're going to run into someone who is going to hear what they believe and point out that from a rational point of view they believe in silly things that they originally accepted without proof, and that they continue to accept without proof.

Stuff like "the meditation technique I was taught is the best and most effective in the entire world." This is a completely delusional and insupportable belief unless the person stating it has actually *learned and practiced* ALL other techniques of meditation in the world. And yet millions of TMers have repeated it for years, and continue to do so, all without evidence.

Stuff like, "the practice of the TMSP makes my mind 10,000 times more powerful than the 'lesser' minds of those who don't practice it." Again, this belief is downright delusional, because there is and has never been any evidence to support it. Yet again TMers will repeat it because they've heard the leaders of the organization that taught it to them repeat it so often.

But sooner or later these True Believers run into someone who points out that all of this stuff sounds downright crazy to them, and asks the TBs to provide some rational argument or evidence for the things they believe.

And they CAN'T.

Because there is none. They chose to believe this stuff on pure faith, and now that the beliefs been challenged, they realize that faith is all they have.

Not being willing to admit this, the TBs get ANGRY. They lash out at the people asking for evidence of what they believe, call them names, and do anything they can to make them shut up and stop saying the things they're saying.

But IMO this is *misplaced anger*. The True Believers aren't *really* angry at the people who have pointed out that they believe things for which there is no evidence and no rational explanation. They're angry at THEMSELVES, for having been so gullible as to have believed these things for so many years without ever even *noticing* that they're believing things for which there is no evidence and no rational explanation. They're angry at THEMSELVES for having backed themselves into a corner in which their own gullibility and lack of intelligence is being pointed out for all to see.

But really, wouldn't it be more sane to take some of this cognitive dissonance they feel and *examine* it to see whether the things they've believed for so long really *deserve* their belief, rather than get their panties in a twist and turn into cultists trying to silence the critics?

We TM critics *understand* your anger and your embarrassment about the things you've believed for so many years or decades. Because to some extent we believed them, too.

What we don't understand is your willingness to *continue* believing in these thing once the lack of proof for them has been pointed out. What we don't understand is how you can justify lashing out at people whose only real crime is pointing out the lack of evidence for the things you believe in, instead of doing a little "inner work" and trying to figure out whether these beliefs might be better thrown away than held onto. We don't understand how you can take the embarrassment of having believed unbelievable things for decades and then add MORE embarrassment on top of it by acting like cultists.

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