Guest View: I Took the Nxivm 16-Day Intensive: Keith Uses People’s Innate Desire to Be Good to Do Evil

By John Williams

I took the 16 day intensive and I marveled at its effectiveness. I have been lately analyzing why it was so effective in recruiting people to Keith Raniere’s mission to purportedly save the world.

Part of the answer lies in the materials taught by Keith in that first 16 day intensive.

As I read all of innocent Dani’s testimony, I feel I saw the key to the power of KR to addict and retain his most loyal and effective followers. It is so simple and clever, it is staggering.

The power of the program is to:

Engage students in detailed self examination of their own honesty with themselves about themselves. Many questions are asked which are designed to engage the student in deep introspection about her own character, intentions and hidden dishonesties.

The result of these questions is a feeling of finding oneself or knowing oneself. One’s own flaws – in minute detail – are admitted and owned up to. The appeal of all this is that a person will address her own pure intentions and desire to do good in the world. The program appeals to the very best and basic nature of goodness in one’s self. The student then feels that this technology should be exported for all, and the world would become honest and therefore will be saved.

The Nxivm program appeals to the highest of our potential to bring good to the world. It causes a feeling of hope, a bright outlook and is eagerly shared with others of like mind.  Human potential is increased with positive feelings and hope, and consequently people do more and achieve more during the program.

At a certain point, the question is asked: “Can one be partly dishonest?” Strictly speaking the question must be answered that one is or is not honest.

Therein lies the primary mechanism Keith uses to gain control of others. He, first of all, brings people to strive to become the very best version of themselves and to have a goal to be that best possible self.

Then he causes them to ‘discover” that they are not so good.

This cycle of “I am good” “I am not good”, is constantly recycled.

The desire to do good and be capable is admired, fanned, approved, desired and developed, or acknowledged that the person is not as good as they believed and, devastated, one accepts that they need to work and study more [Nxivm tech].

Keith’s program does not appeal to a phony or dishonest front of goodness. It appeals to all that is best in a human being. It encourages a person to be at his best and points out the basic goodness or rightness or great abilities of each human being.

The horror, or distaste, of not being good is then what can be called “issues”.

But herein lies the trick: The attention of the person is always directed upon themselves for correction. Attention on someone else is an escape from one’s own “issue”.  Thus Keith keeps all attention from himself and creates self incrimination in others.

The intention is GUILT

The second key to Keith’s power that I saw is that, in the 16 day program, the student is directed to learn how a criminal can get away with crime in broad daylight.

The reason for this, it is taught, is that people are basically “good”. The natural tendency and nature of man is basically good, not bad.  Because of that observable fact (observe children to see that basic nature), people who live in their basic nature do not suspect others of being dishonest. They do not expect to be cheated and lied to because they themselves do not behave this way.

In other words, if we are trustworthy, we will trust naturally. If we are not, we will see it coming, as we know how the dishonest think and behave.

These two ideas are:

1 How Keith can always cause someone to focus on their own faults.

2 To not be able to figure out the mind and intention of those who are dishonest.

These two mechanisms are primary keys to Keith’s power. I think they are completely calculated by him. He is the ultimate manipulator. Keith has no actual power of his own.

Sort of like the movie, the Matrix, Keith’s followers are hooked up. The life force of all of them is hooked up by each with their own hands and is drained into Keith and then all admire and ogle at what is pooled collectively and is collectively their own combined power.

That is the illusion.  The emperor Raniere, in reality, has no clothes.

About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • That’s it? This recycled pap?

    “Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.” It’s simple religious guilt. The oldest scam in the book. Break the fools down, get them on their knees, and they’ll be in your thrall forever. The other half of the equation is to tell the fools they have infinite potential. In religious terms, “we are all made in God’s image”. And yet we have fallen from our state of grace. So down on your knees, sinners.

    There is nothing original in Raniere’s scam. It’s all cribbed.

    Anybody with an ounce of sense would see through this in five minutes. Where it’s sourced and where it goes off the tracks. Yeah, so human beings are flawed, so what? Why am I paying for this, and why does it take two weeks to tell me what everybody already knows?

    I guess this appeals to the gullible sort with poor self-image. And weak wills. Those folks who are afraid to raise their hand and ask their “guru” some hard questions. Looking for easy answers and willing to believe whatever crap they’re told.

    There really is a sucker born every minute.

  • Thank you, John. Right ON! My sister, Gina, was the most self-exploratory, soul-seeking, do good “for the benefit of all sentient beings” (a Buddhist thing) kid you’d ever want to know.

    Until she started “disintegrating” into that “ Luciferian” state KAR always warned of and protected her from — a theme KAR built around a Mormon doctrine that itself is based, in part, on Milton’s Paradise Lost — a very famous work published after the time of Joseph Smith —the very young persecuted prophet who was talkin’ to the same Holy Spirit as Milton. Apparently.

    Paradise Lost became a kinda bible for KAR until he switched it up to Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged) after Nancy Salzman arrived and dubbed Barb Bouchey “The Daphne” of their little NX paradise of ethical humans in control of all the world’s wealth — I named my golden retriever Daphne after the famous heroine myself.

    Another note: Smith’s Book of Mormon was “witnessed” by 12 older gents who saw the gold plates the boy prophet from another planet transcribed. It’s rumored some of the gents were polygamists, goofs and diddlers in their day on the lam from the law.

    KAR’s safeguard against disintegrations and that fearsome Luciferian state — apart from blue light special, enlightening, energizing sex with him — was doing his bidding.

    Some disintegrations were past-life Nazi regressions — Gina’s was different. Gina’s was transformation into the Buddhist Goddess Samayatara.

    • The woman in the Ayn Rand book was named Dagny. Dagny Taggart.

      I was a big fan when I was 15 years old, but the thundering stupidity of Atlas Shrugged lost its hold on me by the time I finished high school. It’s shocking that actual adults take those books seriously.

      It should be common knowledge that if a grownup tells you that you need to read Ayn Rand, that person is either hopelessly gullible himself or counting on you to be.

  • The “I’m good, now I’m bad” is a simple confusion technique. Confusion is a trance state which changes your perceptual filters allowing you to become more easily malleable. Your perceptual filters change with your state. A simple example “love is blind” a person may suggest you’re dating a loser but you filter that out because you are in a state of love and do not want to believe your lover would ever do you wrong. Every state of mind has filters allowing you to see what you want to, and not see what you don’t want to see or believe. When a person is aware of this, it is quite easy to put a person, in the state that will benefit the manipulator, while the target will be blind to the manipulation utilizing there own perceptual filters.

    • What you’ve described isn’t a filter. it’s just confirmation bias. A good manipulator just uses this against you by appealing to what you are more willing to readily accept. It’s like the seesaw is catering to the opposite side as more evidence is piled on, but all he has to do is tip the seesaw with evidence that you regard as heavier due to your confirmation bias on your end just a little bit to pull you back down to where he wants you.

      Using confusion to manipulate someone is something different and so is the bad/good cycles that people are put through in these type of intensives. The latter is a manipulation of emotions where they make you feel low with faults or issues only to give you something positive to make you feel high such that it makes you forget the former. Going from a greater low to the same high is greater high. They rock you between two extremes where the high keeps you coming back like a drug, e.g., a breakthrough or an epiphany.

  • This is similar to the idea that most MLM scams, such as Amway, use to put the blame on the failed distributor. Amway claims their system of activities to undertake (the analogy is NXIVM tech) is perfect and therefore if anyone fails it is their fault for not applying themselves enough. The requirements are beyond what virtually anyone can humanly accomplish over a period of time and the distributor is told that if they miss one tiny requirement a single time, they should assume they need to start all over from scratch. The analogy I recall from the “training” is when an Olympic athlete cheats a single time by eating some ice cream they should not expect to earn a gold medal. Obviously, this is ridiculous, but that’s the extreme position Amway takes to being “loyal” to the system in order to shift blame to the failed distributor and one of many reasons why people do not speak up after being scammed by Amway and other MLMs. Keep in mind that Raniere started with Amway before creating his own MLM scam, Consumers’ Buyline. He learned and applied the concept that it is the person’s internal failure, instead of being his fault, very effectively.

  • Welcome to Keith Raniere’s world where good is bad, and bad is good. In truth, good and bad are just meaningless abstractions to totally amoral individuals like him and his inner circle.

  • ‘That is the illusion.’
    This post reminds me of a scripture from the Bible. Paul warns the newly converted to beware of fakers:

    12 But I will keep on doing what I am doing, in order to undercut those who want an opportunity to be regarded as our equals in the things of which they boast. 13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15 It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their actions. 2 Corinthians 11:12 -15.

    Mr. Raniere participates in this masquerade – loving, kind, so attentive to the “special” women in the inner circle. But actually evil, prideful and determined to have power over these Sheeple, no matter the cost. Greed got the best of him.

  • That’s very interesting. I would fallat the first hurdle – don’t really think I have many problems or faults and I certainly don’t want someone else making me think I am riven with faults. Sounds like a recipe for being very unhappy.

  • Huh? None of that makes sense. Who was your head trainer and proctors?

    That is not what is taught in the 16-day.

    When and where did you take the course? I think you made up your entire story. Thanks for the info Ben Szemkus.

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