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Experience with Lightning Process course 2008, Norway

Discussion in 'Psychosomatic theories and treatments discussions' started by Parsnip, Jul 2, 2021.

  1. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    This is long.

    If any one reads it, and have any information about some of the questions i have in there, especially if anyone have information about any other lawsuits against him (non PR related that is), i'd be interested in hearing from you.


    I still get the occasional panick attack when reading about the Lightning Process, so it has been difficult to write this down. According to my diploma I was there the first week of september 2008. Live Landmark and Vibeke Hammer were recent graduates and had started as coaches under the name Aktiv Prosess august 2008 (Norway). My coach was Vibeke Hammer, the one who offered the 12/13 year old boy a new free course after being told he had tried to commit suicide after her course.

    I had a quick look, but couldn’t find anyone who had shared the actual course/homework papers. They are trademarked, and say they cannot be distributed in any way. The last pages that you are supposed to show to family and friends are not, I have translated them into English and will upload them separately.

    I don’t know if what they are offering today is a watered down version, but I believe my course is more representative of a proper LP course, as they had recently trained with him.

    I wasn’t able to shorten it much, as I felt it would take away from the fact that it is not just the course content that is problematic about this mess. And i also don't know how much information about this is out there.


    A. Hearing about LP

    B. The eligibility phone call

    C. The course

    D. The follow up call


    E. Excerpts from the course papers

    F. Some final thoughts


    Phil Parker says here (p. 199) that the secrecy thingie around the course is a rumour and that they encourage everyone to share their experiences. And says the trademark thingie is only so that nobody will copy his intellectual property and run their own courses, as they are a result of years of experience and research. So I’ve added some excerpts from the documents that do not reveal anything intellectual, as that should be ok.


    For the rest of the course papers. If I were to stumble on a link to a site with a pdf showing the papers in Norwegian that are exactly like mine, and if I were to link to it here, do anyone know if that would breach the “all documents you receive…are not to be reproduced, sold or distributed in anyway” thingie? If not, and if someone would want to see them, let me know.

    I’ll also leave a link to his old healing hawk website from his astral projecting days, in case anyone missed it.

    Edit: Thanks for letting me share.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2021
  2. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    A) Hearing about LP

    My parents do not have a superstitious bone in their body, but got desperate and contacted PP after mom got tipped about it from the hospital she works at.

    I had been bedridden for months, gotten a post viral diagnosis, but no further medical treatment or help. I could on occasion walk around in a zombie like fashion, sometimes hear what was said, but was rarely able to respond. When I was bound to bed, I was mostly slipping in and out of consciousness, struggling to eat as I couldn’t sit up, could barely move my arm to reach for food, and struggled to chew.

    After talking to PP, they wanted to get me on a plane to London. When they came back to their senses and realized that would be difficult, they called him back. Then food stopped being delivered to my bedside table (I didn’t notice as I had no perception of time).

    As that didn’t get me out of bed, food came back. Now reduced to one meal a day, leftovers from dinner. Covered in sauce. Which I hadn’t had with my meals for years since I was diagnosed with an (actual) allergy against milk protein.

    At some point they started coming into my room on occasion wanting me to talk to some woman on the phone. I don’t know how long this went on for, as I was rarely in a state to realize what was happening.

    One day I told them to talk to my doctor about this, hoping he’d back me up, as I didn’t want go. He did. They didn’t listen. I felt I couldn’t resist too much myself, as I was scared that might push them into actually believing I somehow chose not to recover.
     
  3. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    B) The eligibility phone call

    One day when I was more mobile, dad gave me a form. It had four yes/no questions.

    1. Do you want to/are you willing to do everything to be healthy? Yes

    2. Are you willing to completely break off contact with a family member if we say so? No

    I don’t remember 3 & 4, but they were neutral, so I answered yes on those.

    Then I had to talk to her on the phone. She listed up the questions one after one, and I were to say my answer. On the second I answered “no, but you can tell me if a family member is having a bad influence, but the decision to break off contact is mine”. She sounded disappointed and said “oh no I don’t think you are ready”. Me being a bloody idiot and terrified of what my parents would think if I didn’t get into this course, had to do a u-turn and pretend I was willing to do whatever she said. She quickly shifted to a happy voice and proceeded to ask the last questions.
     
  4. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    C) The course

    1. The first day started with a spiritual introduction, with a mis-mash of urban legends like a monk who had spent 20 years meditating in a cave who could now produce heat on local parts of his body with his mind.

    She told the last story with 'pride' and as she finished speaking she was quiet for a bit, looking at each and every one of us as if we too where to be as awe stricken as the first time she heard about it. (This was the real life ‘proof’ showing us that the mind can influence the body).

    2. Rubber duck. We were then told how we had made our selves sick by holding a rubber duck out with a straight arm for way too long. She said: this rubber duck doesn’t weigh much does it? Literally holding a rubber duck out with one arm. But imagine holding it out like this for an hour, that would be tiresome, right? Think about holding it out for weeks, months or even years that would be tiresome, right? (Can’t argue with that).
     
  5. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    3. Scientific background.

    We were then shown a graph. She said it was measured elevated stress levels in ME*, so we now know what ME is and that this method works. (these were her exact words)

    Genuinely curious, I said: Oh, how do we know?

    She got angry, lifted her finger, walked straight towards me and said in a strict voice: the reason you are sick is because you ask too many questions, as if she was scolding an insolent child.

    I was stunned and confused.

    That was the first question I had asked.

    I wasn’t really conscious when I got my diagnosis, so I didn’t know anything about it. All I remember is the doctor saying, I don’t know what is wrong with you and we don’t know what this diagnosis is but based on your symptoms and the fact that you can’t tolerate exercise (I had started an exercise regimen prior which left me completely bedridden) you get this diagnosis. My thought at the time was, how can u give me a diagnosis if you don’t know what’s wrong with me.

    So my reason for asking was that I genuinely thought she might have some new information. One would not take money and say you can fix something unless you at least have some knowledge of the thing you claim to fix, right?

    And jumping from elevated stress levels in some patients with this diagnosis to this method works on all of us without knowing anything about our stress levels OR mentioning a study showing the method had reduced stress levels in any person with this diagnosis is nonsensical.

    Plus, she had just said the reason we are sick is because we had strained our shoulder from holding a rubber duck out with one arm for way too long.

    Anyways, it was apparent what this was at that time. My worst-case scenario had been that this was some touchy feeling let’s sit in a circle and sing Kumbaya my lord so that people who were recovering could get some hand-holding. And I thought she would see that wouldn’t apply to me yet, as I was half dead with bones sticking out everywhere. I was wrong.
     
  6. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    * I don’t know if this is a random graph, if it’s used by PP or if it’s the graph from Wyllers study (don’t remember the date of his findings). If the latter, I ofc can’t know if they used it without his permission or if he was involved at this stage. But Lives PhD application for the Norwegian Lighting Process study says Wyller has known her since 2007.


    4. The method

    "Twister is a game of physical skill produced by Milton Bradley Company and Winning Moves Games USA. It is played on a large plastic mat that is spread on the floor or ground.

    There is also Blindfolded Twister, a variant where there are four different tactile symbols on the mat, and the players are blindfolded and have to find a circle with the named symbol by feeling." – wikipedia.com

    It is basically blindfolded twister, but I believe it was only three, instead of four tactile symbols.

    The mat was laid out on the floor, and our coach showed us how to play. She said, now each of you must do it.

    The friends & family section of my course papers say: "do not laugh of the person if they are brave enough to do the process in front of you".

    Signing a confidentiality agreement saying we are not to talk about this is strictly not necessary as nobody would want to talk about this. I can explain in more detail if one is interested and not familiar with the rules of the game. But from what I could gather most seem to know what it involves.
     
  7. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    5. The contract

    At the end of the 3rd day we were given the contract. I tried to read through it, my eyes didn’t really function at that point so my effort where futile. At the bottom it had two large squares, one saying:

    § I'm healthy

    § I'm not healthy

    She said we didn’t need to read it, just sign by checking the “I’m healthy” box, and said it only contained some information like we were not to use this method to stop ourselves from eating/feeling hunger because PP had been sued after two 10-15 year old girls ended up in the hospital after he tried to cure them from their anorexia, so they just had to put that in there. She then said, but this doesn’t apply to you, right, the girls knew each other before the course, and you know, stupid girls with anorexia, right? *

    It was told in a condescending and dismissive manner, as if we were to reply with: Yeah, stupid girls with anorexia.

    I was 1. Disgusted with the way she talked about them (showed no respect for human life) 2. Dying of the irony as my parents had tried to starve me out of bed after only two phone calls with PP 3. Distraught, as I had, during the phone screening said yes to sign a confidentiality agreement that I would not speak about what happened at the course. But was now told I had to sign off on being healthy, which would be a lie.

    So, I asked her, what if I don’t sign I'm healthy. She, again, changed demeanor and said in a strict voice:

    “Then you are not allowed to leave”.
     
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  8. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    I sat there distraught for a while not knowing what to do. My memories are vague from that point on, I believe I signed I was healthy and left, as I just wanted away from there.

    After the course, I was back to being bedridden. My parents had calmed down. They occasionally told me my coach had called and wanted to talk to me. I did not respond.


    On a side note – license fees

    When signing the contract she also told us they had to pay 100 000 NOK (a little under 10k euros) as a yearly license fee to PP, which they thought was a bit unfair, so they were trying to rename/rebrand the course to get around that.

    I don’t understand what PP's site says about fees, but it looks like it's only 10k NOK as of 2021. I am as certain as I am of any of this that she said 100k NOK during the course, but have not found any other sources that can confirm this. **

    *Has anyone else heard about PP being sued? Or know if there is any way to look up records on court cases in the UK? Wouldn’t surprise me if that was the first time.

    **If I read it correctly Phil Parkers website now says annual license fee is ca 10k NOK (under Training Fees tab).
     
  9. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    D) The follow up phone call

    I have little memories from the time after the course, so I don’t know when, but I did talk to her once after maybe around 1-3 months.

    The call was basically her trying to get me to say I was healthy. She also asked me some questions, about how long I had been sick, the severity, and a leading one: how much more can you do now?

    This was the first time she asked about the severity of my condition. Asking about it pre-course would have been more apt. Anyways, I answered I got sick about 1.5 years ago, had been completely bedridden a few months, she said it back to me as if I had been more severely ill for longer than I reported. I corrected her. And then we went back and forth like that a few times.

    She also tried to ‘coerce’ me into saying I now was healthy/cured to the point I wondered if I should just agree and say I was healthy so that I could hang up. (I say coerce as that’s what it felt like).

    But I was mildly pissed and scared that others might be treated like me, so I tried reasoning with her. I was not trying to stop her from holding the courses only tried to make the point that she couldn’t honestly believe this had an effect on 100% of people with this diagnosis as there are no blood test for it, so you can’t say this works for everyone, and continued with that there has to at least be one person this doesn’t work for, maybe not me, but someone. She could not accept that.

    I proceeded by telling her symptoms that would not fit the narrative of being cured within 3-days, and she just yelled at me: but it is not as if you are brain damaged. I was again stunned. Didn’t understand where that came from as that was not what I was implying at all, or how I saw myself. I honestly thought this was a transient thing that would pass within 1-2 years’ time, as my doctors had said it would.

    All I wanted was for her to be more careful in what she was doing. As when people are desperate, they might want to believe in this and do something stupid.

    I don’t remember how we ended the conversation. But it was not on good terms.
     
  10. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    This was the last I heard from them, except for a few mails in 2011 inviting me to a free information lecture + invitations to pay for more courses. All of them ending in this information is confidential and for the recipient eyes only. And one from 2013 saying my now ex-lp coach have started a new 3- day program. Ansvalighelse.no. She describes the method in a video on facebook, it’s basically LP.

    --Apperantly I participated in a survey.

    A few months ago I found out about a survey that was apparently conducted on all participants from 2008, by external people with Godthaab Rehabilition center outisde of Oslo from an article by Kristin Blaker LP coach Forskersonen.no 2021, which has a broken link to said survey saying it was conducted on all participants from 2008 in an article by Live and some others, tidsskriftet.no 2016.

    No need discussing what the last link says, I’ll just leave it here as they explain their thoughts about the process and theory behind it somewhat concisely. Point being, I was never contacted about the survey.
     
  11. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    E) Excerpts from the course papers

    page 9:

    (Training you how to respond to those not in the know). They say we will go through them on day 3.

    “Friends – how will they react to the sudden changes you have gained?”

    “Will there be anyone who do not want to like it, be skeptical, won’t be helpful? (It will help if you can name them)”


    Page 13: Follow up and future

    “Now that you have completed this course and your training and received your PARTICIPANTDIPLOMA (their caps), you might think you are done with Phil Parker Lightning Process, but this is just the beginning”



    To do-list:

    1. Send us a mail to set a date for the follow up consultation within the end of next week

    2. Listen to the CD every day

    3. Read the books LP & Ten Questions

    4. Fill in the ‘editingforms’ every day for a week (page 12)

    5. Write your own success story and send it to us within two weeks (We were encouraged to write it during the course)


    On page 10.

    (We were supposed to create movies in our head (ie rewrite reality to one we liked better))


    “If there are no good memories”

    “seek harder”

    “borrow from someone else”


    Page 14

    “Your brain can’t distinguish between real and false memories”
     
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  12. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    E) Some final thoughts

    I believe this is how one starts a cult. If they were more organized and had more regular gatherings, I’m sure LP would have ended up like scientology. It just took a different path and ended up as a profitable enterprise instead.


    About the ‘method’

    From what I understand, cults have some sort of thought reform process / thought control technique in the form of a ritual or mantra that reduces critical thinking, and the ‘subjects’ are told doing that activity is beneficial for them. When it in fact is crafted to take up the individuals time so they do not get a time to think, with a ‘hidden’ secondary motive of leading you to do what the ‘inducer’ wants you too.

    That describes the method to a tee.


    As to the point about how some might benefit, it doesn’t matter. They should have gotten information about ‘thoughts, feelings and behaviors’ from a licensed psychologist.


    As to why health care providers should not recommend alternative treatments, I’ll just finish with these paragraphs (translated from Norwegian) from the non-trademarked family and friends section of the course papers.


    “2. BE NORMAL. Start treating the person as a “normal” person that has good health. You can be used to ask the person about their problem in a caring way, but from now on that is not useful for them. Please adapt your behavior to a different way of showing care, that does not involve treating them as if they are sick.”

    “7. …. The time it takes to recover doesn’t have as much to do with the degree of illness and the length the person has been ill, as how easy and how often the patient actually does the process. It can be a bit like learning to driving a car. Some does it quickly with a lot of practice and passes their drivers test on their first try. Others are more careful or anxious or doesn’t practice as much so that it takes more time.”
     
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  13. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    The apllication forms do not contain anything bad per se, except the usual check if you are willing and so on.

    I acctually had a spot to go see PP himself, so i'll add the application from 2008. And the norwegian one used in 2008.

    And the last pages of the course materials, friends and family section.


    I still don't understand how it got to the place we are now, where researchers are trying to get this implemented in the norwegian health care system.
     

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  14. Kalliope

    Kalliope Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Thank you for telling your story @Parsnip
    I'm so sorry you went through this.

    I can certainly understand it's awful for you just to hear the name of the course.

    Thanks again for all the work you've done in writing this down. You're doing an important job in telling this!

    I hope you and your family have been able to talk about what happened.

    Big hug :hug::hug::hug:
     
  15. Sarah94

    Sarah94 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Fucking hell. I'm so sorry @Parsnip that you went through this
     
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  16. Sarah94

    Sarah94 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Can I ask how old were you when this happened?
     
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  17. Peter Trewhitt

    Peter Trewhitt Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Thank you, @Parsnip, for putting in all the hard work and under taking the emotional challenge to share this account.

    It will take me a couple of days to read it all, but this is such an important topic. The LP is worryingly successful at PR, and it is the con treatment that most people hear about. Friends regularly (maybe on average once every two years), with great excitement, send me a newspaper or magazine article about it, and are then disappointed that I do not rush off to be cured. A GP friend even sent information prepared by an LP Trainer, only to be a bit taken aback by the flood of criticism of the LP I emailed back.

    So it is very important that we share and discuss all we know about it, especially in light of the dangers face by uninformed participants and given it should be regarded as abuse when undertaken with children.
     
  18. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    Thank you Parsnip for sharing your experience. I can imagine writing that brought back horrible memories.

    What an appalling thing to do to sick people. How on earth can any doctors support this dangerous nonsense?
     
  19. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    @Parsnip

    Many thanks for taking the time to document all that you went through. I am horrified and angry on your behalf that you had to experience such cavalier disregard for your dignity, rights and well-being.

    It is so very sad to know that there are so many deluded people out there forcing their ill-informed point of view on the vulnerable. You were very brave.
     
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  20. Parsnip

    Parsnip Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    It's fine now. Don't blame them. I've been desperate enough to pretend i could get healthy plenty of times during the following years all by myself.

    Another reason why this giving people false hope thing is so bad, as accepting there is something severely wrong with you so you don't cause more harm is difficult enough as is. I did start exercising on my own accord before this, and pushed myself to the breaking point as i wanted to deny reality.


    teenager/young adult. I'd rather not excact number in public. I'll private message you.


    I am really sorry to hear that. That's horrible. And yes, they are not just great at PR but also double speak. Plus they have the magic method giving them all the energy in the world, in contrast to us. Took me a few weeks, after 13 years to ble able to write this afterall...


    It did.


    Yes it should really be some laws or regulations against that... Their ill-informed point of view is well put. I must add I really do believe my coach and live acctually bought into this entire thing. During the phone call with my coach i got the impression she needed me to say i was cured, not for my sake, but more because she herself had doubts. As if she needed the feedback to keep her illusion up.

    I thought she would drop the act on the phone call, but she really did treat me as i was a thing. I've never experienced that before. Or since, luckily.
     

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