The Landmark Forum is Probably Not a Cult

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Baked and Awake

Episode 27

January 31, 2018

Steve Cominski

Today on the show:

Welcome, Thanks for the most recent five Star review from Vanzell Kirk aka Inner Observer, of the Lifted Scene Podcast! Shoutout to a great Pacific Northwest produced show about all things higher consciousness, only the least part of which is mind expanding drugs! Don’t forget to check out my episode this week and next week on On The Edge with Mike Peacock, where we talk all things Cannabis this week, and next week I believe the conversation might turn to one of my favorite pet subjects that we have yet to delve into here, Chemtrails! Pod News: January marks our best month in downloads EVER, Thank you all for your listens! We are excited to announce that in our quest for total spectrum domination we have hacked the Clear Channel Servers, tied up their gatekeeper AI, and implanted our rss feed deep in the throbbing heart of the beast that is…. iHeartRadio. Yes that’s right you can now find the Baked and Awake Podcast on iHeart, along with almost dang near every other pod catching thingamajigger out there, just try me!! Finally please as always go check out our Teepublic Store where you can find legit, original designs from real live friends of mine- talented ones! There’s a lot more than just shirts there and every purchase goes towards supporting and improving the podcast, AND you get to help us spread the good news that is Baked and Awake with the many oh so many unwashed masses who still don’t know the time..

Upcoming Events: Cannacon Seattle, Feb 15-17- who else is going and who wants to meet up to talk business, content creation, or just to session? Hit me up!!

  1. WA State Cannabis Home Grow Bill Advances
    1. Related: Bill 2559 Summary and status
  2. How Blockchain could Kill both Cable and Netflix
  3. The Bunny Ears Podcast, A Hot Take
    1. A Blog Post about the 40th Anniversary of EST and the Human Potential Movement, Psychology Today
  4. The Landmark Forum, the Foyay

Landmark and its predecessor, EST Training is credited or blamed, depending on who you ask- with the creation of the modern Self Improvement Seminar Industry. EST, or Erhard Seminar Training- itself was one of the earliest, and biggest companies at the backbone of a decades old multi million dollar a year industry that is Self Care, Self Improvement, Career Development and “Team Building”, you name it. It’s every corporate retreat you’ve ever been to where huge obstacle courses are erected in unlikely green belts. It’s trust falls and people giving monologues on the early traumas that haunt them in their daily lives, or perhaps sharing the traumas they dole out now in the form of personal failures, recounting of petty fights with loved ones, or worse. In some ways, it will remind those of us brought up in The Church of elements we encountered there- of our own Pastors, Ministers, and Priests and their sermons, some more ominous than others in their import- or of our own times confessing our sins either on our knees in the church pews, or perhaps in the confessional if you were raised Roman Catholic.

This is a lot more than just corporate retreats, although that is an enormous and important part of Landmark Forum and Landmark Education’s business model- it’s everyone from Gary Vee to Tony Robbins to Dr. Oz, and on down the line. Are you in love with TED Talks? Perhaps Deepak Chopra or Wayne Dyer is more your speed. Doesn’t matter. Same diff. You may begin to see where I’m going here. Shoot- we’re not even done! To jump the tracks and land in a parallel lane, we have reductionist materialist Pundits such as Richard Dawkins, Jonathan Haidt, Christopher Hitchens and more who made careers on the back of the need for explanation and “solving” of some of life’s greatest questions. These modern day Nietsche’s are even more ubiquitous- Neil DeGrasse Tyson? Bill Nye? I mean, as far as I’m concerned there’s an arc there and they are on the curve. The light weight, Pop Culture end of the spectrum that tells us that Man is both the most clever thing that has ever walked on two legs and has eyes to see- and that the fact that is the case in NO way is to be mistaken for evidence of a Grand Design, an Omnipotent and Omnipresent Loving God, or any OTHER overt meaning, purpose, whatsoever.

Why talk about it though? Because I went through one of the weekend long “Communication Workshops” once, and at the time experienced much of the elation and seeming transformation that was promised by the Landmark Recruiting event, itself of course one of the ubiquitous to Landmark bait and switch “Graduation Ceremonies”. Having experienced it and more or less enjoyed it, escaping un-recruited to further levels of “Advanced training”- it felt Cultish, and at the same time AMWAY like- you’re supposed to enroll in expensive further training, and simultaneously recruit friends and family into the Landmark Communication Workshops because if they don’t also learn the Landmark secret, you’ll inevitably drift away from them as they wallow in their ignorance while you live in the Landmark NOW. For all these reasons, it sparks my Spider Sense all over again now, as it did then- and seems like something worth talking about, perhaps even caution you about.

EST and Werner Erhard had early connections to L Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology- to the extent that The Church of Scientology harassed and generally fucked with Erhard, threatening him after his own early split from the Church.

Concerns- The Integrity trap/sales pitch. If you “Believe” in the transformative power of the Forum, you’ll recruit and enroll your family and friends into this training. The training is never cheap, and only gets more costly as you advance to the higher levels. This is not a school for poor people- although I’m sure they recruit and attract people of limited means by design. The Forum is pitched as a replacement or substitute to Psychotherapy and other long term training.

Link to video on Youtube that we sampled under Creative Commons even though who knows it probably doesn’t protect me against using three minutes from a movie from the 70’s

Close with: Audio from a friend on his first day at The Forum..

Link to the Landmark Forum Website

Strain of The Week

Gold Line Concentrates OG Kush - Gold Line consistently produces good tasting, amazing looking wax, crumbles, etc. I believe this is BHO, and for $30 retail before Have a Heart Skyway saved me $5 just for walking through the DOOR- I don’t see how you can beat it!

Royalty Free Music

Antti Luode, as posted to Reddit under Creative Commons- THANK YOU!

Organizations to Support:

NORML- The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws

The Sentencing Project- Sentence reduction, commutation for non violent offenders

75 episodes available. A new episode about every 9 days averaging 67 mins duration .