Mass Formation Psychosis

There has been a lot of chatter on the internet about those three words since they were used to describe our current situation. I’m not a psychiatrist or psychologist but I can understand psychological terminology. Basically my understanding of this phrase is that a group of people have gone along following a leader contrary to evidence that the leader doesn’t have their best interest.

I like to look at concepts I’m trying to understand by finding an example I am familiar with. For me it’s much easier to use the known to understand the unknown.

If I was to pick a historical situation that I think fits Mass Formation Psychosis I’d go back to 1978 in Guyana. Jim Jones, a self proclaimed minister, led a group of followers from Indiana to California to Guyana. They believed they were forming a utopian community. In reality the group was a cult and ended with mass suicide. It’s known as the Jonestown Massacre. Details are in the link.

Another similar incident is the Heaven’s Gate Cult. You can read the details on the linked website. It’s another group following a leader who convinced them to commit suicide to move on to the next world.

The leaders of both of these groups controlled the behavior of their followers. They limited where they could go and who they could interact with. They controlled all the information the group was given often in the form of lectures or sermons. When the narrative put out by the leader was threatened the leader convinced the group it was time to commit suicide.

I was in high school when the Jonestown Massacre was in the news. It was shocking. I still have a hard time wrapping my head around it. But now, looking at the final word in the title up top, I understand that these people weren’t in their “right” mind. They had been reprogrammed by their leader.

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I'm a wife, mother and knitter. Watch out for my pointy sticks.
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21 Responses to Mass Formation Psychosis

    • an article that starts by calling a group of people “imbeciles” isn’t exactly one I’d take seriously. Just yesterday I learned that two of my friends, both double vaxxed and boosted, tested positive for Covid. MY brain goes “so how’s that vaccine working for you?” THEIR brains are going, “I would have been so much sicker!” MY brain goes, “how do you KNOW that?” Is there evidence of that? Or are you just worshipping at the cult of Fauci?

      Liked by 2 people

      • I’m glad to see I’ve got people talking:)
        I hope your friends recover quickly.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve been pondering this topic but haven’t read enough to comment, really. I also remember Jonestown and David Koresh, cults fascinate me. I had a friend who came very close to getting sucked into one when I was in college, another friend basically dragged him out of it, I was on standby in case he needed backup. I’ve been watching what’s happening and thinking that people have lost their damned minds, honestly.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve had cults on my radar for a long time and I too find the idea both fascinating and scary as hell. In my lifetime I’ve seen enough interviews with people who have escaped to know that cult members really don’t understand that they’re in a cult that could do them harm. Those that do leave on their own admit it was hard to leave because of what leaving will mean.
        I hesitate to say too much about what I see. First it makes me very angry and then sad. I worry about what’s to come. In my everyday life I see very few people who are skeptical and that scares the shit out of me.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Last week my BFF and I had a conversation about who we felt we could trust. The list was longer than we realized. Most people don’t talk about how they feel these days. It feels like a sort of silent network where one person says “so and so is awake” and another says, “so is this person.” There are more of us than they know. Do I sound like a conspiracy nut? Maybe. Do I care? Not anymore. I feel like we’re the voices in the wilderness most days

        Liked by 2 people

      • cattknithat says:

        Fauci: “I am science.”

        Liked by 2 people

    • I do think cult behavior is a thing. Maybe the terminology is something different in the psychiatric world.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Main Stream Media is brainwashing the general public with their scare tactics and propaganda agenda. It seems to be working. Repeat the lies and opinions as facts enough times and people will start to believe them as truth and fact. Cult mentality?

    These vaccines have not been tested for long term effects. Period. My body, my choice …or does that only pertain to my reproductive organs?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. For me, part of the wake up call was hearing so many of the “news” people repeat the exact same phrases about things. “Mostly peaceful protests.” “Baseless accusations.” It was like they were all reading from the same script. It still is, only now it’s about vaccines.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I noticed that too. Way back in the late 80’s or early 90’s I watched the news in Florida and it was scare porn from the beginning to end. I couldn’t get over it. A few years later it was the same in Boston. I knew something wasn’t right because the news had always been about delivering facts in a calm way.
      I just saw that Bob Saget passed away. My first reaction was to fact check it. I doubt everything at this point.

      Liked by 1 person

      • My second reaction was to wonder if he just got boosted. I first noticed the news thing with the weather. It was 5 minutes tops on the news when I was a kid. All of a sudden it was 24/7 fearcasting for a few inches of snow. It is terrifying

        Liked by 1 person

      • Did you see that AOC has tested positive with symptoms and is resting at home? I keep reading online of triple vaxxed testing positive. I can’t believe how none of them wonder out loud why they got the breakthrough case.
        Every storm has a name now too. It really takes away the attention that should be on a storm big enough to get a name.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I did not see that about AOC, and please forgive me for laughing. Whoopi Goldberg also had it and she said something like she was shocked because she’s done everything right.
        Yup, and it really helps my snow anxiety.

        Liked by 1 person

      • AOC was just vacationing in Florida with her boyfriend. There were photos of them dining outside.
        I saw that Whoopi had it as did someone else on the show. A while back I watched videos put out by an industrial hygienist. In one episode he explained masks and what OSHA requirements are that he has to meet in his job. Whoopi wasn’t doing everything unless she was wearing a professionally fitted respirator with fitted goggles. All viruses are itty bitty and can squeeze through a tiny gap. Don’t tell anyone but I suspect the masks are being used to remind everyone that we’re living through a pandemic.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I saw a video – may have been the same one – the guy was talking about how useless it is to mask kids in school. AOC is a piece of work

        Liked by 1 person

  3. cattknithat says:

    I’ve always had a problem with “because you said so”, or following around a man. If the Bible says it, I’m ok with it.

    The Apostle Peter himself said to trust the Bible over man. He said that he and the other apostles weren’t going to be around on this earth forever. He said that is why he wrote II Peter.

    “Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle . . . Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.” II Peter 1:14-15

    He said that he even heard a voice from heaven, but said that Bible is even more sure than his personal testimony.

    “We have also a more sure word of prophecy . . . Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. II Peter 1:18-20

    “But though *we*, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” Galatians 1:8

    The Apostle Paul said the same thing.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. ReginaMary says:

    This is a frightening dynamic and while it sounds far-fetched, it is very real to those who believe. When you strip people of their identity and manipulate their reality, they become like sheep to the slaughter. It stuns me how people today are so happy to relinquish their freedom. When a member of SCOTUS stains her reputation because she believes lies, it is a dark day for America.

    Liked by 1 person

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