Different Ways of Knowing

* I probably won’t have any material ready for the scheduled 7/10 entry. Why? Because I am hosting our poetry reading and there is so very much to do!

Hope to see lots and lots of you there!!!!

Free Online Poetry Reading 
Saturday, July 10, 2021  
4 PM Pacific Time 
“Ritual Abuse Survivors Read Their Poems of Suffering and Healing”

Register at  

How to prepare for the reading:
2. Choose a comfortable place
3. Stock up on tea, soft drinks, and munchies
4. Add important extras, like Kleenex and stuffies

1. Mute your microphone unless you are speaking during the Q&A period.
2. If you don’t want to be seen, hover over your image and click the three little dots. Choose “Hide Self.” To turn your image back on, click the “View” button, then click “Show Self View” on the menu.
3. You can change the name displayed on your video. Click on the “Participants” icon (two heads with a number next to them.) A list of Participants will appear. Hover your mouse over your name and click on “Rename.” Enter the name you want others to see. Remember to change it back next time you use ZOOM.

* One more announcement about Pornhub is at the end of the article.

Different Ways of Knowing

I used to think that the only way to learn was to go to school, study real hard, and do things exactly the way they told you to. Then you took a test and found out whether or not you knew something.

I gave those teachers far too much power! There are many ways of learning, and that is only one way, a way that was popular in the early ’40s.

Children learn a lot by watching, listening, touching, smelling. They don’t need another person to do this. For the most part, what they learn is true. Snow is cold. Sunlight is warm. Water is wet. Some grownups paint their lips red, some don’t. Some have hair around their mouths, some don’t. They eat with little sticks, not their hands. Depending on where they live, they call these sticks chopsticks or forks. These are facts. The information comes through the senses, which do not lie.

Actually, senses can lie – if grownups spend a lot of time teaching the children how to ignore the input of their senses and how to misremember an experience as something else. Grownups in cults are particularly adept at negating children’s experiences. “That didn’t hurt.” “That didn’t happen.” “You liked that, didn’t you?” “That was just a dream.” “No, you were at Gramma’s house yesterday.”

Cults also play games with the mind. Double binds are one of their tricks. “Do you want to kill the orange kitten or the spotted kitten? Choose!” “Do you want me to hit you, or do you want to hit your little sister? Choose!” Another trick is inverting values. Good becomes bad; evil becomes good. Words are given meanings that are the opposite of what the larger society assigns to them. You can make kids believe anything if you work hard enough at it.

I think that these learning experiences are processed differently, at least for me. This is because I remember them differently.

Things that were taught to me while being abused come back in flashbacks and through drawing or free-association writing. They had been forgotten, covered over by amnesia. This makes sense to me because everything they taught me was accompanied by a command to forget, to “not know” what had happened or what I had learned. All these things were stuffed way down into my unconscious.

When the amnesia broke spontaneously, they came shooting through in flashback form – images, body feelings, smell, emotions. (Oddly enough, I do not have sound flashbacks.) When I prodded my unconscious through writing or drawing, there were no flashbacks – the memory was there on the page, more or less disguised.

But the things I learned on my own during those dark days and nights come back in a very different form. I just know. All I have to do is join a conversation about a given subject, open my mouth, and out comes the information. It isn’t disguised, it isn’t chaotic. It comes out in a clear, concise, matter-of-fact form. I guess that’s because the information hasn’t been distorted by my abuser’s lies and manipulations.

These days, I know what I am talking about when ”I just open my mouth and out it comes,” but back when I first remembered, I didn’t have enough context to always know what I was saying.

I came across a notebook from 1988/1989 and read some things which surprised and amused me.

“The facade is an integral part of the building.” Hmm. And I thought I was being so original when I wrote that blog entry! But I knew what I meant back then. The “fake me” I constructed when I had to hide the abuse became an important part of my personality, of the “real” me. Then I turned my attention to other things and forgot all about the facade and the building.

I also found two pages in which I referred to myself as fragmented. The one I want to find I can’t, of course. I think these are the exact words, but I’m not 100% sure. It was part of a wish list–

“I want to be whole 
I am tired of offering people fragments of myself”

The other entry is a record of a rather sophisticated dream.

“I dreamed that there were discrete roles or psychological states and when I was in one state I felt coherent. It was slipping from one to the other that made me feel crazy.

This is true, except that I’m always in several and so I feel crazy all the time – fragmented consciousness or identity.”

I knew I was fragmented back then. I knew without knowing I knew. Then I put that knowledge aside for decades and here it is again, front and center in my mind, rather than slipping in and out of consciousness.

Boy, the mind is a wonderfully complex thing.


* I am writing this as a note because there is more and more news about the successful fight against Pornhub and Mindgeek. This time it’s the announcement of the filing of a lawsuit. I could easily write about Pornhub three times a month . . . but that is a different blog.

34 victims, 14 of whom were children at the time they were abused, have filed a RICO – racketeering, trafficking, and child pornography – lawsuit against Pornhub and MindGeek, Pornhub’s parent company. You can read all 179 pages of the complaint at https://mindgeeklitigation.com/asset/2021.06.17%20-%20Dkt.%20001%20-%20Complaint.pdf.


Upcoming Holidays


7/4 Independence Day 
7/23 Full Moon 
7/25 St. James’ Day/Festival of the Horned God 
7/27 Grand Climax


8/1 Lammas/Lughnasadh 
8/13 Friday the 13th 
8/15 (?) Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 
8/22 Full Moon 
8/24 St. Bartholomew’s Day


9/5 – 9/7 Feast of the Beast/Marriage of the Beast 
9/7 Labor Day (United States) 
9/20 Full moon 
9/22 Fall Equinox 
9/29 Michaelmas/Feast of Archangel Michael and of all Angels

Dates Important to Nazi and Neo-Nazi groups

7/18 Tisha B’Av (Jewish Day of Mourning) 
7/29 Hitler proclaimed leader of the Nazi party 
9/1 Start of WW2 
9/7 Rosh Hashana (Jewish New Year, Day of Judgement) 
9/16 Yom Kippur (Jewish Day of Atonement) 
9/17 Hitler’s alternate half-birthday 
9/21 – 9/27 Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles, Jewish harvest festival

(NOTE: Not all groups meet on Jewish holidays. Some groups also mark Candlemas, Beltane, Lammas, Halloween, the solstices, and the equinoxes.)


Additional information on various holidays:

Lammas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/category/lamas/
and https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/august-ritual-dates/
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 1 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/the-feast-of-the-beast/
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 2 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/feast-of-the-beast-part-il
Fall Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/the-fall-equinox/
Halloween {personal) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/halloween/
Halloween (background) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/samhainhalloween/
Thanksgiving https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/11/20/thanksgiving/
Yule/Winter Solstice https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/12/15/yulewinter-solstice/
Candlemas https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/01/21/candlemas/
Valentine’s Day https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/02/10/valentines-day/
Spring Equinox https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/the-spring-equinox/ 
Easter: personal. (for background, see Spring Equinox) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/easter-blues/
Walpurgisnacht/May Eve: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/walpurgisnacht/
Beltane: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/beltane/
Mothers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/04/26/mothers-day/
Fathers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2020/06/20/ritual-abuse-and-fathers-day/
Summer Solstice (corrected text) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/well-this-is-embarrassing/

Ritual Abuse and Polyfragmentation

Back in the late ’80’s and early ’90’s, when I first started down this long, difficult, amazingly rewarding path, the word polyfragmentation wasn’t used in connection with multiplicity. Or if it was, it didn’t pop up in any of the myriad books about ritual abuse that I read at the time and so I didn’t know about it. Well, I knew about it intuitively, and so did many others, but we had no words to describe it.

Now most all survivors know what polyfragmentation is and feel a lot less lonely and crazy. Which is great!

But do they really know? Poking around, I found that the term seems to be used in several different ways. Just knowing that the word comes from poly = many and fragmented = the state of being broken off, detached, or incomplete doesn’t help a whole lot. (from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fragment)

Here are some of the ways the term is used:

1. More than 100 alters. I assume that means alters with names, ages, personal histories, etc. Some may be more fully formed than others, but basically they are all like people. That’s a lot, but it seems to me that it’s more a crowd than a group of fragments. Though I suppose if you consider that all alters either come from the original personality or from alters that have already split off, you can consider all the alters fragments. But wouldn’t that be true of people with 79 alters, or 5, or 3?

2. Parts with only one function, or formed during one specific instance of abuse. These parts might not have personalities and probably would not appear too often. They were split off from an existing alter and, because they are so limited, could be considered a fragment.

3. Parts arranged in layers throughout the system, generally isolated and not in communication with other parts of the system. Here I start getting confused: I can see that the system could be considered fragmented, but I can’t see the parts as fragments. They seem to me more like “sleeper alters.” I think my confusion has something to do with the type of system organization: it generally indicates government/military programming, which I always have trouble understanding. This pattern may co-exist with either or both of the other two described.

4. And then there is my kind of fragmentation, which I don’t consider confusing at all, of course, because it is normal for me. There are little bits of things floating around with no consciousness or purpose, sort of like dust particles in the air. When I want to do something, a number of these things coalesce into what might be considered an alter, or a group of alters (for more complicated tasks.) It’s not necessarily the same particles each time. All this is very logical and simple to me…except…who/what decides what to do? who/what picks the group of fragments? who/what decides when the action is complete and the particles can disperse?

The mind is never simple, is it?

In a sense, we don’t have to know how our mind works. We have been doing what we do for years and years and by now it is automatic. It takes no effort for me to assemble an internal crew to do the dishes (once I stop procrastinating) and being able to describe it as clearly as I can makes no difference. I still can’t decide if I am a proper multiple or not; I’ve just stopped worrying about it. I have better things to do with my spare time.

I have to end this post by telling you about a man I knew years ago whose mind was totally different yet remarkably similar to mine. I think it is so fascinating.

He said his mind was a slide rule. He lined up all the components of an action, and if he got it right, it went smoothly. If one part was missing, he froze until he could find it and put it in place. And if he picked a wrong part, he risked acting inappropriately.

Here’s an example. Phone rings. Select ‘phone.” Select “answer phone.’ Woman says, “Hello, may I talk to Bill.” Select ‘woman.’ Select ‘identify self as Bill.’ Woman says, “Would you like to join us for dinner Thursday?” Select ‘mother.’ Select ‘find excuse.’ You get the idea.

It all happened at lightning speed. The only way he could analyze what was going on was to further dissociate and have a part look at the process as it was happening. After observing it many times, he found a simile for how his mind worked and was able to describe it to others. But, like me, he had no idea who or what was observing the process or who or what made the decisions – who selected ‘mother’ rather than ‘bill collector.’

I wonder if there are others like him out there. And I wonder if others truly understand polyfragmentation.

Finding My Voice

Recently I keep coming across the phrase “finding your voice.” It seems to crop up everywhere. I take this as a sign that this is an issue I am getting ready to deal with. If it weren’t close to the surface of my mind, I wouldn’t be so aware of other people talking about it.

What does “finding my voice” mean to me?

I’m sure it doesn’t mean speaking up about the reality of ritual abuse because I have been doing that consistently for many years now. The day I realized I had been abused, I said to myself, “This is what they mean by ‘the personal is political!’” By speaking, I make my personal experience a societal issue, at least in my own little corner of society. So I opened by big mouth in 1989 and haven’t shut it yet.

I think it has something to do with allowing the cut-off parts of me to emerge. I am so shattered that there are hundreds and thousands of fragments scattered through my mind. Each little fragment holds a tiny part of some memory or emotion that I had to put far, far away when I was a child. These fragments are no longer accessible to me, simply because they are so small.

When I think of putting together the pieces, the image that comes to mind is not that of a jigsaw puzzle, but of a glass so broken it has turned back into sand. How can these tiny particles ever have a voice? Even words have been disassembled and scattered, an “a” here, a “b” over there, totally disconnected. When I bring them up into consciousness, they are just a handful of letters that don’t mean anything.

I don’t know how to help these lost parts can come together enough to have a voice. I have no idea if it is even possible.

But I do know from experience that when my system is ready to do something, it happens. Maybe not in the way I expect or hope for, but change does take place. And so I wait and trust, and that is enough.