and that you will find very hard to accept: this has nothing to do with facts. There is nothing you can tell your friend or show your friend that will prove he’s in a fraudulent organization.
Accept that now and you can find ways to deal with this. If you don’t accept it, you will hurt any efforts you make to deal with your friend.
When he went to the very first open meeting (or any other meeting), he was told, “When you tell people about this, they’ll say it can’t work. Do you want to know why? Because they are jealous and they want to steal your success!” That may seem like a small statement, but it “vaccinates” them against anything you say.
Of course, you’re saying, “But he’s my FRIEND. He knows I wouldn’t want to do that.” Partially true. They are dangling a multi-million dollar golden egg in front of him. If he believes you, then he has to deal with working a 9-5 job until retirement (or whatever work he does). If he believes them, then he “knows” he will be wealthier than he can dream of in just a few short years and will live a life of leisure.
It’s not about whether he can trust you, it’s about whether he wants to believe you or them. Friend vs. everlasting wealth. He’s been hooked.
My ex gf was, literally, a genius. I showed her numbers and facts and brought of things that, by logic proved to her that the only way they were making money was by fraud and she was unwilling to believe it.
She hated her job and hated the idea of having to earn a living for the rest of her life and wanted to believe that she had found the freedom they promised. The facts didn’t matter because she didn’t want to believe them. She wanted to believe the people promising her wealth.
If you present facts that don’t agree with your friend’s brainwashed beliefs (and I don’t use the word brainwashed lightly here, it IS brainwashing), then you will be labelled as “negative” and once you’re labelled that way, everything you say is suspect.
Okay, I’ve run on about that and by now you’re depressed after reading it, but it’s the truth, it’s the way drones think when they’re in a group like this, and it’s easier to face it from the start than to try to ignore it.
Now, going from there, the current thinking is that questions help. The idea is to ask a question, knowing you won’t get an answer. You’ll get a reply. Probe with more questions. The point is to get your friend to THINK through this stuff and to begin to see the contradictions.
Forgive me for taking on an icon like this, but it would be like the process of a kid learning that Santa Claus does not visit every kid over the course of one night. Kids want to believe there is someone kind who will help them and do good things for them and love them unconditionally. They have strong emotional reasons for believing in Santa Claus. Then people say there is no Saint Nick. they don’t want to hear it and won’t believe it. Then they get old enough to see just how big the world is and to wonder how he fits down the chimney.
If you tell a kid these things, they won’t believe it and don’t want to believe it, but if the kid has to start dealing with questions like that, then eventually the facts behind the answers win out.
You are dealing with a 4 year old who does not understand your logic, cannot follow your reasoning, and knows if what you say is true, there is no Santa Claus.
That’s why questions help.
Example: They don’t make money off the conventions.
Question: But there’s 6,000 people paying $100 each. How much is that? That’s $600,000. Isn’t that a lot?
Okay, it’s not that easy. It’d take 3-4 questions to get to that last one and to “set up” your friend so they are ready to hear that question. Then you can ask, “If the coliseum costs $25,000, where does the rest of the money go?” (I checked on coliseums, that’s how I have that figure.)
This is an oversimplification, but the point is to keep probing with questions. You know your friend, we don’t. You will have to get a sense of how far you can push before you have to let up.
Facts won’t help directly. However, knowing facts will help you figure out what questions to ask, so the facts are important, but if presented simply, can push the person in the other direction.