Human Potentials formerly Spirit of Freedom

Discussion in 'Cults in General' started by sarahbartholamew, Nov 26, 2010.

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  1. ObliviousOne

    ObliviousOne New Member

    I am the sole remaining child of "The Great Colin Brown".

    I knew things were getting bit weird in what he was doing, but I didn't want to have anything to do with it and I didn't realise extent of it. I now feel physically sick having just read this thread which has a lot in it that a daughter should never have to read about her own father.

    In explanation, in is defence if you will, I absolutely believe that in his delusional mind, he really believed the things he was saying and doing were all for the greater good. In no way do I believe he did what he did intentionally to hurt or rip people off. He had the belief that if you lived like a king, you would live a king's life. If you spent lots of money, lots more money would come your way as a result. Perhaps that's where the money side of things spiralled out of control?

    The turning point for my Dad was when my sister was diagnosed with leukaemia. Dad had been a Scientologist in previous years, but had left the church several years earlier I think because, on reflection, he felt that he was being diddled out of money and that things had turned cult-like - much the same as what he then went on to do to others...

    All focus was then on trying to beat the cancer and save my sister, which was a losing battle from the start and brings back terrible memories of more pain and suffering than she needed to endure, in my opinion. She and Dad would conduct many "Sessions" in conjunction with a very strict diet and whatever else that went on that I didn't too much want to know about then either. Then of course the inevitable happened and she died, and I recall when she did, instead of staying in the room with us, he left the room to make a telephone call to Maryanne who he was in cohoots with at the time, setting up whatever the hell they were setting up back then, so that they could do whatever it is they do spiritually to guide her somewhere? I am so pleased at this point that I remained oblivious to much of what he was doing. I was told by him after the funeral that my sister had gone to another planet in another solar system where instead of being born into a body she got to choose one off the rack, and that she had chosen a nice one and called herself a name similar to her own (which I won't reveal simply out of respect and anonymity for her, even though she is no longer with us).

    The next incident not long after the death of my darling sister was Dad and Angela getting "together spiritually" in the garage while my Mum was in the house... it tore what was left of the family apart and broke my Mum's heart and destroyed their marriage of 28 years. I guess you could call that the first casualty of the marriage break-ups which were to follow - lead by example perhaps???

    By this time I had moved out of home (I moved out when I was 17), so thankfully I was somewhat removed from what was going on, but my poor Mum.. they lost everything, and despite what he had been earning, he didn't retain any of it as he believed in spending it.

    After he died I flew over to see him before the funeral and to bring his ashes home. I was invited to the Centre to meet everyone which I did as my final mark of respect for Dad... and of course we all stood in a big circle holding hands while they belted out a couple of John Denver songs.

    I love my Dad and am heart-broken at reading what he has done to so many people. For his part in this, and on his behalf (as surely wherever he is now, which I don't for one second believe to be on another planet in a body he chose, he must be looking down realising the extent of his actions), I apologise to everyone concerned unreservedly.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2013
  2. WhiteEagle

    WhiteEagle New Member

    Blessings to you ObliviousOne, may the depth of your journey bring love light & laughter in your experience of life.

    I myself participated in the HP/SOF courses mentioned in this thread from around 2002 in Sydney to around 2006 on the Gold Coast where I met my partner and we are still together in our relationship today.

    This thread has been a enjoyable read for me, some new information, some a-ha's, some sadness and some laughs. Thank you for sharing your journey's.

    I enjoy a conscious journey of self discovery, what an amazing life this is! Over the last 23 years participating in personal/spiritual courses etc. and I found the HP/SOF courses to be fantastic in content and delivery. I gained a lot from participating in those courses and the experiences created through them, while at the same time I remember walking away from them at the time from what I recall being referenced as 'the organisation' with some initial disappointment.

    I let myself get caught up in my own hope that 'this was it', I had found something outside of myself, people, an organisation that could help me free myself of that which I used in my life to not be free. While utilising people and organisations for growth IS a way to gain awareness and become free'er as a being, the 'getting caught' part, while not being much fun, was a choice I made when I decided to continue doing the courses.

    My initial disappointment was early on when I told my story, in vulnerability, in hope of being acknowledged by others as the spiritual being that I am and not my behaviours, past and present. Instead of being seen for who I am, I felt judged and marginalised. Bugger, I thought I had found it!

    There were though, at the same time, men and woman within this organisation that did believe that there is a way through the challenges we create for ourselves in our lives, good people who were willing to help others and in their own journeys to do the same.

    So thank you to those people who supported me to grow where I could. While I had my own judgements and projections (remember that one :)) I feel blessed that you are who you are, and I am the man I am today for having known you.

    So, were there men and women high up in the HP/SOF organisation that had their own agendas, well yes there was, it wouldn't have fell part the way it did if they didn't have. Is that a right or wrong thing? No, it just is where they were at. Is there a way through all this, yes it's called life.

    Forgiveness is a longish word and it can be a long journey but doesn't have to be. I have forgiven myself and I have forgiven others, in forgiveness I find Grace and Love in life. May all involved in Human Potentials / Spirit Of Freedom (and I'll include Scientology : ) find a a place to forgive those men, women, organisation and behaviours they feel wronged by, and may you know and experience your own Grace.

    While forgiveness is all good for me, you are welcome and free to express whatever you need to express to free yourself from where you are not, although if it is through anger or hate etc. at others, that will only perpetuates anger... within and not free you, it will only continue the pain.

  3. Ogsonofgroo

    Ogsonofgroo Crusader

    Um, that up thar sounds like a bunch of scilon bs, we don't need no stinkin' validation! Mongling yerself is fine newbie, and it is good fer ya!


  4. PaulS

    PaulS New Member

    Great post freedom. personal power and personal responsibility are linked. Victim consciousness is contagious.
  5. PaulS

    PaulS New Member

    Interesting post 'Finally Free'. You had an emptiness. You sought to have it filled. You found Suzie's org. You went there to fill that void. You got something from the initial courses - something that opened you up. You associated that feeling with Suzie's org instead of yourself. You got addicted to the drug. You made Suzie's org source. From there the end was predictable. No one has all the answers. You have no idea how powerful you are. But you have to be truthful to yourself. At the higher levels of Suzie's org you had to deny the obvious more and more. I don't have the right words to describe this, but I'll say: You willingly agreed to higher levels of disbelief- ignoring your awakened inner self's screamings "there is something wrong (off, inauthentic) here" - you did that. You surrendered more and more of yourself to get more of the drug. Ok you may have done that - but that does not have to be your future. That does not make you bad, dumb, stupid etc. Take the lesson and move on empowered. You can stop blaming Suzie and hating yourself. If you wish to share your experiences to inform others do so not from being a victim but from being authentic. That way everyone (including you) can be empowered.
  6. PaulS

    PaulS New Member

    CurlySue - although I would word it differently, I agree with your "have a "look" you would first have to go thru the trauma of hurt of what YOU did to fill YOUR ego!"
  7. JustSheila

    JustSheila Crusader

    It appears PaulS=ObliviousOne

    Nice conversation, Scientologist. :eyeroll: Keep kicking up those old, dead threads and maybe you can distract from the real interesting news and stuff going on, right?
  8. PaulS

    PaulS New Member

    You know it was probably set up with good intentions - but sometimes the leaders fool even themselves. They too suffer self-delusion and take on ever greater levels of disbelief for their ego to survive. After all isn't all of this a playing out of individual consciousness (Lucifer - the fallen angel, not the evil one; Enki etc.) vs. collective consciousness and submission to one overlord (Jehovah, Yahweh, Enlil, etc).
  9. PaulS

    PaulS New Member

    Yes this is my recollection. On Colin's death the organisation split into two - Suzie set up one half. Interestingly, in the early stages of suzie's org (in a nod to Hubbard) Colin's photo/image was displayed prominently in the left side of the course room.
  10. PaulS

    PaulS New Member


    Brings back the playing of John Denver music during the courses :)
  11. LostYears

    LostYears New Member

    Wow....I have only just discovered this thread - I'm a few years late it seems!

    After getting out of the clutches of HP I removed myself from anyone associated with the organisation, and from anything at all to do with them - including googling information or anything really. I was adamant that there was no way that I was going back or getting pulled back into any off shoots of the org, so didn't want to maintain contact with anyone.

    There were some good and genuine people in there that I would love to be in contact with now, but let's face it, we were all completely brainwashed. I feel so ashamed and so, so stupid that I could have let myself be so devoted to this for so long. I wouldn't listen to family members or friends that were questioning ANYTHING about HP's credibility or methods. We had been warned by Susie and others that people in our life would try to negate our experiences and the validity of the courses, so we were ready to go on the attack when they of course did, which then further alienated our families. In fact, our fellow org members became more important than our families. There was a feeling that we couldn't live or function without them, and that if we left the group, our lives would deteriorate and we would bring on terrible things to ourselves and our families. I believed that if I didn't confront every aspect of my own negativity that my family would pay the price, and then I would have to live with the consequences.

    I moved cities multiple times, costing thousands of dollars every time. I did all the courses and then became heavily involved in promoting the courses, doing one on sessions, and started presenting courses. Initially, after the first 2 beginner courses, I made wonderful changes in my life and fixed some messy relationships, felt much more at peace and happier. But, I was obviously a very suggestible and easy target, and I very quickly became a follower and completely wrapped up in the group. There was always a suggestion that I had something special to offer, that soon I would become a 'clearer', and even a 'presenter'. Just one more course, just a few more sessions. It never seemed to be enough. I was spending way more on living than I was making on sessions. There was an assumption that if you weren't creating enough income then you weren't facing something, and weren't really "going for it". A confusing aspect is that I genuinely loved helping people and listening to people. I know that I'm not a bad person and didn't ever intentionally want to trap anyone into anything. Yet, i guess that being a part of this group, I did indeed do that. I wasn't in the inner circle, but just outside of it. The inner circle felt way more 'enlightened' than the rest of us peasants!

    My partner and I are one of the few couples that were heavily involved that actually managed to make it through and still be together. When all the partner swapping was going on (although, from reading this thread, it seems that this had always been going on - I was so naive!!), we did separate for 6 months as there was a strong suggestion that our "purposes were not aligned". This resulted in massive emotional chaos, regrets, and undoable actions - and we had a small child at the time. Fortunately, we loved each other enough to reconnect and work through the hell that we had been through. We then opened our eyes, jumped ship and ran for our lives! We are still together and look back and can't believe how lucky we were to get out with our relationship still intact.

    They are like lost years, so much of it is a blur. I let friends disappear from my life over that period.

    I suffered a traumatic loss a few years ago, and my immediate reaction was "what have I done to cause this? have I not been loving enough? am I being punished for not facing something?" - such was the extent of the self-analysis brainwashing. Whilst it's good to learn to be the creator & motivator in your own life, there also comes a time for some self-compassion and boundaries. That's the thing about these types of groups - your self esteem is constantly being eroded or elevated, so much that you become scrambled and don't know what the truth is anymore.

    I know that I made these decisions and I'm not interested in being angry at anyone. I was angry and pissed off for a long time. I learnt some valuable tools in there, and I'll keep the ones that work in life, and exorcise myself of the rest of the brainwashing rhetoric thanks very much. Very, very glad that it all fell to pieces, and may it never start again.

    Peace to all that made it out!
  12. Lurker5

    Lurker5 Gold Meritorious Patron

    :console: :hug:

    May everyone deeply brainwashed wake up soon and get out, and begin the healing.
  13. JeffL

    JeffL New Member

  14. JeffL

    JeffL New Member

    I was involved with Freedom Potentials in the last year or so just before Colin died and I found the whole experience excellent, difficult, challenging but great fun, and life changing in a positive way for me. Before that time I had done courses with several other groups which were useful but didn't really achieve anything significant for me. I got into freedom potentials by accident because a friend moved from Sydney to the Gold Coast to be involved in the 6 months course. I ranted and raved and thought it was a cult, but after I had done a few courses I found that my initial fears were totally unfounded.
    I was not in the inner circle and I was not on the 6 month course but I had become friends with a few guys and girls on the 6 month course and I often went to the Gold Coast and shared a house with two of the guys and we had a ball. I did the Basics, Section 1, 2, ,3 three or more times and the two-weeker twice, and a few other courses.
    Up to that point I had been struggling at work in an IT consulting company, doing ok but not being able to really interact with clients or work colleagues like a consultant should be able to. As soon as I did a few of the FP courses it changed everything for me at work and I was able to interact with the clients so well that the clients begged me to do more projects and I created the most successful projects for the company during that time. It was truely life changing for me in a positive way. The first two-weeker course was brilliant for me and I felt like I had shed my old difficult self and become a new person. I repeated a lot of the courses because I really enjoyed them and they were very beneficial for me and I did the two-weeker a second time which was fun but doing it a second time didn't have any more real major gains. So I was happy to stop and get back into my normal life being an IT person and a very active sports person. I was still working the whole time I did the courses but getting back into completely normal life took a bit of adjusting because my awareness was very sensitive at first and it was a bit like walking on eggshells, but after awhile I adjusted to normality and managed to keep the gains which have stayed with me all the time over these last 20 years.
    After Colin died I did a few more FP courses but I found that the organisation had shifted and the organisation seemed to me to have lost its way and the people were trying too hard to create something and trying too hard to be important within the organisation. I think that some of the top people had talent but not quite the same talent as Colin, but the new up and coming presenters didn't really have sufficient awareness and the whole thing had become a group of people trying to run the same courses but without the proper understanding of the courses and the whole thing seemed a bit flat and lifeless to me and the newer presenters were going around in circles trying to free themselves up but never really achieving anything, so I didn't involve myself with them again.
    However in the year I did the courses with Colin it definitely was not a cult. Sure it was a group but absolutely not a cult. However groups can get a bit weird and even the sporting group that I have been involved with for many years can seem like a cult to outsiders. People naturally strive for promotion in whatever group they are in whether it is in business or trying to win world championships in sport. It was the same in Freedom Potentials with the inner group trying to become free so they could rise up. However, there were some people (mainly guys) who were obsessed with gaining promotion within the group by showing Colin how free they were and those guys were in fact less free haha which Colin used to always point out.
    So there were the courses, and there was the group, two seperate things. The courses were simple fun games and activities which even though they were simple and fun were very effective at gradually opening up a persons awareness so firstly they could see how they operated in life and then on the two-weeker the person was able to break through and become a newer better more aware person. I felt that the two-weeker course was just brilliant. We had a ball and I felt like a new person at the end.
    Some people would remain stuck and keep repeating their old habits and as Colin used to say something like, "these people remain stuck on purpose so they can continually do the courses over and over again".
    Some people like being in a group and get great comfort from it, whereas I am not a group person, also I am not a team player so I had no natural interest in becoming part of the group and there was never any coercion to make me part of the group. However I was quite stubborn at hanging onto my old beliefs and it took awhile for me to get my awareness but in the end I feel that I really broke through and made great life changing gains.
    I felt that Colin and all the other people running the courses had everybody's best interest at heart and they were really doing it to make a difference. After all it is a hard way to make a living running courses so they would have been better off running coffee shops if they really wanted to make money. I think that everyone is entitled to earn a living by working hard and those people running the courses really worked hard and gave their total time 24/7 towards the courses.
    Now lets talk about the group (as separate from the courses). I think that Colin was excellent and he created courses that really worked (for me). I believe he was really trying to help people. So he brought together a group to do a 6 month course with the aim of freeing up each individual and then trying to free up the group. I think he felt frustrated that he couldn't get everyone to free up as much as he wanted to, so he often tried a few novel ways to get people to get awareness. In hindsight some of these people might have taken it a bit personally. For example one guy on the 6 month course always seemed a bit flat so every day Colin put a box of grass on the table and said that waiting for him to free up is like watching grass grow. It was quite funny when looking at it from outside but confronting for the guy, but Colin was only trying to help him break through his stubbornness or whatever he was stuck on. For crying out loud; that's not a cult!
    However, I felt that some of the inner group were not that smart (otherwise why would you leave your job and move to the Gold Coast haha). Anyway I think that Colin was very smart and some of the top people were also smart but a few of the others were not. I remember on one course I was on with the 6-month group that someone came up with some copper coil which was supposed to cause the impurities to come out of your body in a bath. A lot of the group got excited about this but they were just naive with no knowledge of science. Colin used to shake his head in disbelief that his group could be so gullible.
    I can remember another exercise where Colin talked about a higher order energy or beings from outer space or something as a means of trying to explain negative energy. A lot of the dopey people in the group then started to believe that these beings existed. Once again Colin shook his head in disbelief and said "It's not real guys, it's just a mind game to try to explain negative energy" but some of them still believed that there were beings from outer space, haha.
    You can get some weird things happening when a group is together for a long period of time. It wasn't a cult, it was just a group of people (some not so smart) who were able to explore some interactions. A lot of those ideas and interactions were an experiment by Colin to come up with better ideas for the courses. There was nothing cultish or sinister about it, but it pushed the envelope for human interaction (in a good way in my opinion, but for some people it might have been a bit confronting or hit into their issues)
    After Colin died the top people tried to continue the courses. I did a few of the courses but as always when new people take over they changed the courses slightly and I felt that they had lost the essence of Colin and that the courses were no longer as effective. And as the organisation grew the lower level presenters would run the courses but they didn't have the same ability or awareness as Colin so I suspect that the organisation struggled to find success within itself and it merely created a group struggling for success but actually imploding. Colin was able to keep the lid on people's ambitions but with him gone it seemed to me that people's ambitions rose to the surface. Still not a cult but perhaps a bit of a black hole which people got dragged into.
    Anyway, in life there are sometimes windows of opportunity and I think that Freedom Potentials in the year before Colin died was an opportunity that I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to do the courses run by Colin. It is unfortunate that other people found it a negative experience for them. I can see how it would have been difficult going into the courses as a couple. I was lucky that I was single without any strong ties and I had no intention to give up my normal job, so the courses were great for me.

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