"They charged a lot of money for the ‘racket’ they operate"

May 4, 2005
By Paul Pitt

Interesting web site. Looks like your reaction (and the reaction of the various reporters of personal experiences) were not unlike mine although perhaps a little stronger.

I had forgotten about the "volunteers"* and hall monitors (like high school), and the continuous deprecation when you were one second late from a break or a recess. That was all to illustrate how inadequate you are and how much you need some outside assistance (such as Landmark) to get your life in order.

I did not forget how everything was called "your racket," which is another way of saying your ideas and responses are criminally bogus (fraudulent) -- because a "racket" is criminal fraud (is it not?).

The instructor/castigationalist kept referring to himself as an "ontologist." That was supposed to be a new word to everyone, but as a graduate of a Jesuit university it was not a new word to me. It was merely a term to describe certain categories of thought about existence.

Aristotle really started something when he wrote that existence is a matter and form composite.

Well, we sat through a morning of people reporting as traumatic breaks everything from the absurd to the ludicrous.

A person would get up and report how several children had died in a fire or were kidnapped by a relative and taken to Afghanistan and then another would claim that although her father gave her everything from a Harvard education to a BMW, his refusal to pay for dancing lessons made her feel unworthy and degraded.

In all of these cases reported I could not help but think the reporting person needed a psychiatrist more than they needed an "ontologist."

They managed to take every waking hour of a weekend (like boot camp) so that you had no opportunity to reflect or evaluate while it was going on. There were several people who got up and left. They were skillful in castigating any doubters and validating mindless acquiescence.

In the end they were trying to say that people made bad choices as young children if they experienced any kind of a reversal and that these choices became tactics for everything that ever followed. That is, we are all adults with 7-year-old solutions to all of our problems and in some cases though they might be right, this wasn’t true for most.

Their solution to this failure to become a functioning adult is to take more and more Landmark Education courses and hence to learn from them how to function at capacity and therefore change your existence.

I recall too how there was a need to write letters for being "out of integrity" with significant people and to "fess up" to our limited and self-serving solutions to problems.

In the end it seemed the ones that needed a shrink either got worse or found themselves in a situation requiring a shrink. The ones that did not mostly went home and forgot about it. A few were sold on the idea of more and more Landmark "brainwashing."

Well, if they did not end up with a clean brain, then perhaps it was tie dyed by Landmark to the color and pattern Landmark wanted it to be.

You will meet successful and even happy people from Harvard, Stanford, University of Chicago and from state universities and Jesuit universities. I am confident that most would say that at least some of their success and happiness could be attributed to their studies and experiences while earning a degree.

I doubt that anyone would attribute any major life changes (or choices) to Landmark.

I do not look for Landmark to have a hand in producing anyone like Trump, Gates, Martha Stewart or other success figures of modern America. I doubt that there are any political or military success stories attributed to Landmark. In short, I do not believe Landmark has done anything to improve lives or to produce innovative achievers.

I think Landmark mainly accomplishes a transfer of money from subjects to their coffers, and bandies a few terms like "racket" and "breakthrough" around for a weekend in return for expensive fees.

It is mainly a useless experience and has no value that I could detect.

I did not like them and did not like their agenda or their manner with people.

My conclusion is that they charged a lot of money for the "racket" they operate.


Copyright © 2005 Rick A. Ross Institute

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