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Cult Chat

Episode Playlist
Cult Chat - Ep 35 - Sarah Mettrick, Running for Sri Chinmoy Pt1( 0:57:23)       
Episode Information
Caroline, Liz and Lindy discuss cultishness, coercion and control, talk to survivors of cult -like groups in New Zealand, and delve into why we all need to cult-proof our lives.
Published: 18/06/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 34 - Healing Trauma: A day with Dr Bessel Van Der Kolk( 0:58:1)       
Episode Information
Recently Caz, Liz and Lindy spent a day with renowned trauma expert, Dr Bessel Van Der Kolk, author of “The Body Keeps the Score”. Our trio unpack their day of learning, and talk about the impact of trauma on the body, on memory, on recovery and why it is important in the context of cults. Using their hastily scribbled notes, they discuss neurophysiology, EMDR, neurofeedback, and a bunch of other technical stuff. Listen up if you’ve an interest in the mind-body connection and trauma recovery.
Published: 4/06/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 33 - Sam Jahara Pt3 - Truth, Acknowledgment and Repair - 21 May 2024 ( 0:51:10)       
Episode Information
What do you do if someone you love won’t acknowledge the harm that you experienced - the harm they may have caused? How long do you wait, and is there another way to move on? In this third episode Sam and Caz talk about the yearning for acknowledgement and reparation that follows betrayal, especially betrayal as a child. Join this final conversation with Sam and Caz, as they grapple with hurts left behind, relationships that may never be repaired, and their own creative pursuits for justice.
Published: 21/05/2024 7:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 32 - Sam Jahara Pt2 - Recovery for Rajneesh+Centrepoint Children -7 May 2024( 0:55:6)       
Episode Information
Decades after leaving a cult, what is life like for a child cult survivor? How does she build identity and integrate into the outside world? In this second episode of Caz and Sam Jahara’s intimate conversation, the two discuss these concerns and more. They talk about the resources needed to recover and thrive, the wounds left by neglect and abuse, and the unique challenges those born or raised in a cult must navigate. This vulnerable second part of a three-part conversation is not to be missed.
Published: 7/05/2024 6:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 31 - Sam Jahara Pt1 - The children of Rajneesh and Centrepoint( 0:55:59)       
Episode Information
Caz speaks with UK psychotherapist Sam Jahara about her years as a child living in the communes of the Indian guru Rajneesh. They explore how the Rajneesh movement was similar in many difficult ways to the Centrepoint Community that Caz was involved with as a child. This is the first episode of a three part interview between two women exploring the long term effects that cults have on children. Listen up if you care about accountability, repair and the impacts of cults on kids.
Published: 23/04/2024 11:15:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 30 - Escaping Utopia Pt3 - The Storytellers of Centrepoint and Gloriavale( 0:55:34)       
Episode Information
Join Caz, as she interviews two accidental cult investigators about two notorious NZ cults. The first is Natalie Malcon, producer of “Escaping Utopia” the recent Gloriavale docuseries, and “Heaven & Hell; The Centrepoint Story”. The second is Anke Richter, journalist and author of “Cult Trip”, a deep dive into the complexity of both Gloriavale and Centrepoint. This conversation between three cult activists, each using a different medium to shine light on cult harm, will be eye opening.
Published: 16/04/2024 6:30:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 29 - Escaping Utopia Pt2 - Gloriavale DocuSeries - A Chat with Cast and Crew ( 0:55:49)       
Episode Information
Join Liz as she chats with ex-Gloriavale film participant Rosanna Overcomer and film producer Natalie Malcon about the recent Escaping Utopia docuseries. We give you a glimpse “behind the scenes” into the film’s journey to the screens, set design, casting, meticulous re-enactments, as well as the personal challenge of sharing one's story. We also delve into the ethical dilemmas of filming undercover scenes in India, sparking thought-provoking discussions on filmmaking and media responsibilities.
Published: 9/04/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat -Ep 28 - Escaping Utopia Pt1 ( 0:57:36)       
Episode Information
BONUS EPISODE!!! Episode 28 Have you seen the eye-opening three-part TV docu-series “Escaping Utopia” that hit NZ this past week? Join Caz, Liz, and Lindy for a candid discussion as they share their reflections. Gain insight into the complexities of escaping Gloriavale and the support systems aiding those transitioning to freedom. Listen in as we uncover the resilience and courage of individuals breaking free from a closed community, and see the plight of group of members who are part of an Indian Gloriavale Community which has never featured on our screens before.
Published: 2/04/2024 6:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 27 - Tore Klevjer (Pt 2) - Recovering from the trauma of cult harm( 0:55:3)       
Episode Information
Lindy chats again with Tore, president of Cult Information and Family Support Australia. Tore explains some of the supports CIFS offers leavers of cult groups. The two talk about the importance of group support for ex-cultists, why cult leavers need psycho-education about cults, and how critical it is for survivors to talk to someone who understands. Tore explains why therapists need to be trained in the unique impacts of cults in order to deliver therapy which addresses a cult leaver’s needs.
Published: 26/03/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 26 - A chat with Tore Klevjer (Pt 1) - Ex-cultist turned therapist ( 0:54:14)       
Episode Information
This week we share a fascinating discussion between Tore Klevjer and Lindy, both passionate advocates for victims of cultic harm, who also each have complementary roles in organizations which support leavers. Tore shares his experience of being recruited into a group, and how he found his way out ten years later with his family. In this episode the duo discuss regrets, doubts and shame, and how to find a way forward as a family unit - while staying intact - after leaving a cult.
Published: 12/03/2024 8:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 25 - Coercive Control - Is It Legal? ( 0:47:51)       
Episode Information
What do a doctor, a lawn enthusiast, and an amateur photographer all have in common? Almost no understanding of the law! Join us for this episode as Caz, Liz and Lindy bumble their way through various international laws on coercive control, and ask themselves - and you, the listener - exactly what it will take for New Zealand law-makers to recognise how harmful group coercive control is, and provide protection for NZ citizens against it within the law.
Published: 27/02/2024 10:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 24 - Coercive Control - What Is It?( 0:56:56)       
Episode Information
What do a woman abused by her intimate partner, a member of a cult group, and a prisoner of war in North Korea in the 1950s all have in common? Listen to this episode to find out! As you listen you’ll also learn interesting facts about venn diagrams, storm-troopers and the joys of lawn-mowing. This episode features a culty analysis of 1950’s researcher Albert Biderman’s fascinating yet chilling “Chart of Coercion”, with tips from our hosts on how to recognise it in action in a cult.
Published: 13/02/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 23 - A chat with Sarah Steel - cult podcaster, author and activist( 0:50:27)       
Episode Information
Join us this week for a chat with Sarah Steel, writer and producer of the acclaimed podcast series “Let’s Talk About Sects”. Listen as our hosts do some serious fan-girling in Sarah’s direction! After 6 seasons of her podcast and a book on the topic Sarah has learnt a thing or two about cult podcasting, she’s got some ideas about how to make things better, and some tips for our hosts on how to navigate the cultiverse.
Published: 30/01/2024 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 22 - Summer Series - Culty Films and TV Shows ( 0:50:28)       
Episode Information
Are you heading back from a break at the beach and now need a movie from the cultiverse to get you back into the mood for work? In this third summer series episode our hosts talk about their favourite 2023 shows from the cultiverse. Lindy, Liz and Caz talk about what makes these shows worthy watches, and why. These shows will shock you, inform you, and open your eyes a lot wider to different harmful groups out there and how far they will go to manipulate, control and coerce.
Published: 16/01/2024 6:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 21 - Summer Series - Podcasts( 0:52:58)       
Episode Information
Looking for something from the cultiverse to listen to while driving on your summer roadie? Or perhaps you need help to tune out the kids as you flip the sausages on the barbie? Well, let the Cult Chat trio help! In this episode Lindy, Liz and Caz bring you their favourite 2023 podcasts recommendations to help you deepen your knowledge of the cultiverse - but only after you’ve listened to the fortnightly Cult Chat episode of course!!
Published: 3/01/2024 7:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 20: Summer Miniseries - What are we reading? Books from the cultiverse.( 0:50:18)       
Episode Information
It’s nearly Christmas! Are you looking for a holiday read? Caz, Lindy and Liz have taken a break from mince-pie-making and present-shopping to record an episode all about books! These books are the ones which jumped out as our best books from the cultiverse in 2023. Grab your pen and pad and jot down some of our recommended best reads of the year. You might still have time to get down to your local bookshop to nab one of these to chuck in the Christmas stocking.
Published: 19/12/2023 12:25:41 p.m.
Cult Chat - Episode 19: Safeguarding Children( 0:56:15)       
Episode Information
Caroline, Liz and Lindy discuss cultishness, coercion and control, talk to survivors of cult -like groups in New Zealand, and delve into why we all need to cult-proof our lives.
Published: 5/12/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat Episode 19 - Safeguarding Children. It is passible in a cult?( 0:56:15)       
Episode Information
In this episode, we delve into the crucial topic of Safeguarding Children and share insights on navigating the challenges within high control, cultish groups. Drawing from personal experiences, the hosts shed light on vulnerability factors, resiliency, and the complexities of identifying abuse or neglect in such environments. Tune in for a thoughtful discussion on the collective responsibility we all share in keeping a watchful eye on those within our communities who may be silently suffering.
Published: 5/12/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 18: You come out of it broken - Kids in Cults Miniseries (3)( 0:56:59)       
Episode Information
Need a way to come back down to earth again after listening to Hopeful & Victory Disciple’s interview? Come along as Liz, Lindy and Caz reflect together. Our hosts talk developmental regression, what it really means to be a second or multigenerational child of a cult, and they dig into the physical manifestation of trauma for children. What does it mean for a child to learn to deny their needs, before they have even learnt what their needs are? Join us on this episode of Cult Chat, and find out.
Published: 28/11/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - Ep 17: Growing up in Gloriavale with Victory and Hopeful Disciple Part 2 - Kids in Cults Miniseries ( 0:58:52)       
Episode Information
Dive into the gripping continuation of the Kids in Cults miniseries with Hopeful and Victory Disciple as they unveil more about life inside Gloriavale. In Part Two, they discuss the intricate web of friendship, social status, and snitches. Discover how high-control groups set children up for failure and hear Victory's emotional poem, providing a heartbreaking glimpse into her childhood. Gain profound insights into the enduring impact on parenting, the lasting scars and the road to recovery.
Published: 22/11/2023 11:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - E16: Growing up in Gloriavale with Victory and Hopeful Disciple Part 1 - Kids in Cults Miniseries ( 0:53:25)       
Episode Information
Join Hopeful and Victory Disciple in a gripping two-part interview as they share their journey growing up in Gloriavale. They delve into their upbringing in a socially entrapped society, discussing the profound impacts on kids in cults. From bed-wetting to false personas, they shed light on the hidden struggles within high-control groups, unraveling the lasting damage inflicted on the inner selves of children. Don't miss this first eye-opening episode of a two-part conversation about survival.
Published: 21/11/2023 11:14:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - E15: Organisations Under Threat( 0:58:2)       
Episode Information
How do harmful organizations respond when they are accused of abuse? What are the indicators that the response lacks substance or is part of a strategic ploy to maintain control and protect an image? Today our hosts talk about defenses used by abusive groups, including denial, excuses, justifications and comparisons, using examples they have encountered personally. Listen in to learn what real apologies look like, how to sniff out concessions and demonstrations, and why the difference matters.
Published: 7/11/2023 2:30:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E14: Jehovah's Witnesses in the High Court (Part 2)( 0:55:20)       
Episode Information
Join us for Part 2 of Lindy’s conversation with Shayne and Rachael about the JWs application to be exempt from the NZ Royal Commision of Inquiry into Abuse in Care. They examine the arguments that played out in court, providing a fascinating case study of a faith-based group’s reaction to being investigated by outsiders. Lindy, Liz and Caz then unpack the interview and ask if the behaviour displayed by the JWs under scrutiny gives indications of cultishness, coercion or control.
Published: 25/10/2023 2:43:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E13: Jehovah's Witnesses in the High Court (Part1)( 0:51:8)       
Episode Information
Lindy interviews Shayne Mechen and Rachael Jackson after they were observers for a week in the High Court. The NZ Branch of the Jehovah’s Witnesses are arguing their case for why they should be exempt from the NZ Royal Commision of Inquiry into Abuse in Care. Shayne and Rachel are both former JWs, and are advocates for former members of the JW faith. In this episode - part 1 of a 2 part interview - Shayne, Rachel and Lindy give an overview of who the JWs are, what they believe, and how this relates to the Royal Inquiry.
Published: 24/10/2023 2:31:24 p.m.
Cult Chat - E12: Two worlds collide - Plymouth Brethren Christian Church( 0:53:36)       
Episode Information
The leader of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church formerly The Exclusive Brethren) tells its NZ fellowship to urgently gather together, with very short notice, and 7000 Brethren drop tools and flood airports all over the country in their urgency to show their obedience. Why? Is the world about to end? Is there something the rest of us need to know? Meanwhile, Lindy’s dearly beloved Nana Anna passes away and her shunned family on the outside advocate for their right to say goodbye.
Published: 10/10/2023 12:34:42 p.m.
Cult Chat - E11: Setting the Record Straight on Gloriavale (Part B)( 0:59:15)       
Episode Information
Part B: He said what?! Gloriavale Leavers and some current members provide commentary around journalist Rebecca Wright’s visit to Parliament where they asked the head of NZ’s Child Protection Agency whether the children at Gloriavale were safe. You won’t believe what he said! Leavers think it’s time the politicians & government agencies get educated. Today we set the record straight. Watch on You Tube: Part A: https://youtu.be/1lwsiGEOIPg & Part B: https://youtu.be/FxEGi_OW0qo
Published: 27/09/2023 11:00:00 a.m.
Cult Chat - E10: Setting the Record Straight on Gloriavale (Part A)( 0:59:44)       
Episode Information
Part A: Articulate Gloriavale Leavers hit back at the politicians! Journalist Rebecca Wright (Newshub) went to Parliament to ask whether children are safe at Gloriavale. The Prime Minister’s answers elicited quite a reaction among 20 former and current members. Their contributions to this episode are priceless. Your hosts have tied it together with commentary on the Government’s response to cults. Watch on You Tube: Part A: https://youtu.be/1lwsiGEOIPg & Part B: https://youtu.be/FxEGi_OW0qo
Published: 26/09/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E9: Telling lies to save souls for Shinchonji with Laura( 0:58:50)       
Episode Information
Laura was a young adult just starting her career in Auckland when she was recruited into Shinchonji - a Korean high-demand religious group. In this interview Laura describes how she was pursued and recruited, and how fear, deceit and a desire to please others was used to trap her. She became a leader herself and used these same destructive tactics on others. Five years later she extracted herself and in leaving she gave up faith. This episode reveals how easily anyone can be recruited by a cult.
Published: 19/09/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E8: The accidental cult reporter: Becoming part of the story with ‘Cult Trip’ author Anke Richter( 0:56:24)       
Episode Information
A chance encounter with a Centrepoint survivor at a festival a decade ago set Anke Richter on a labyrinthine journey into understanding the aftermath of cults. The result of this work was “Cult Trip”, Anke’s book about her investigation into cults inside and outside New Zealand. Today's chat between Anke and Caz discusses trauma-informed, survivor-centric journalism, how impossible it is to stay objective when writing about the human impact of cults, and how Anke’s and Caz’s stories intersect.
Published: 12/09/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E7 - Culty Word Salad( 0:49:6)       
Episode Information
Are you reaching for your dictionary far too often as you learn more about the cultisphere? If that’s you, you’ll love hearing our hosts slice and dice their way through the most common culty words and phrases. Sit back as our trio define concepts like narcissism, psychopathy, authoritarianism, machiavellianism, and gas-lighting. By the end of our chat you’ll be ready to butt-in on the next conversation you overhear about cults, with full confidence that you’re using the big words correctly.
Published: 29/08/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E6: What makes a cult a cult?( 0:55:9)       
Episode Information
Are cults simply harmless fringe groups with unusual ideas, or something more? Are they always religious? Are they always harmful? Who gets to decide if the word cult is applied to a group, and what if people disagree? Are there some objective measures we can use to define cults? Today Lindy, Liz and Caz talk about some of the different ways cults are defined, drawing on common definitions and exploring some leading international experts’ understandings of what makes a group culty.
Published: 15/08/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E5: Three lawyers and a cult activist - with Brian Henry, Steve Patterson, Dennis Gates and Liz Gregory( 1:31:24)       
Episode Information
How many lawyers does it take to overthrow a coercive controlling system of oppression? Twenty? A hundred? Listen to today’s bonus episode to find out the answer to this age old question as Liz asks the Gloriavale Leavers legal team - Brian, Dennis and Steve - the hard questions about the recent employment case. This bonus episode is being released in response to the July 2023 girls employment court case for the women that New Zealanders will forever fondly call “The Gloriavale Six”.
Published: 9/08/2023 8:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E4: Why isn’t anyone doing anything? - with Liz Gregory( 0:53:56)       
Episode Information
Discover what drives Liz Gregory, founder of the Gloriavale Leavers’ Support Trust, as she shares her journey from being a teacher and business owner to unexpectedly providing support to survivors of a cult. Liz firmly believes that by thoroughly understanding the root causes of problems, we can develop more effective solutions for the future. Uncover the source of Liz's unwavering energy as she continues to raise awareness and advocate for those affected by the Gloriavale community.
Published: 1/08/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E3: Shame, silence and speaking up - with Dr Caroline Ansley( 0:52:13)       
Episode Information
Caroline talks about how her family became involved in Centrepoint, the time she spent there as a 7 year old, and the silence that surrounded the topic after she left. She explains the slow waking up to the impacts Centrepoint had on her life, and how she started to uncover the history which eventually led to her starting the Centrepoint Restoration Project. She discusses the motivation which drove her - a desire to turn an awful experience into something with meaning, hope and redemptive power.
Published: 18/07/2023 1:00:00 p.m.
Cult Chat - E2: Asking too many questions - with Lindy Jacomb( 0:50:46)       
Episode Information
Listen to more of Lindy’s story, as she shares what it was like to grow up in the Exclusive Brethren, the unexpected outcomes of asking too many questions, and the difficult process of leaving. We talk about the long-term impacts that former members of high-demand groups can have, especially in groups that practice familial shunning. Lindy shares with us about the heartbeat of the Olive Leaf Network, concluding our chat with a poignant poem that she wrote on her 10 year leaving anniversary.
Published: 4/07/2023 8:00:00 a.m.