The Facts on the Mind Sciences (Harvest House, 1993), pp. 20-21
The fruit of est: What are The Forum, Lifespring, and Actualizations?
The Forum was developed by Werner Erhard and constitutes a slightly revised rendition of his previous knavery, Erhard Seminars Training (est). Lifespring and Actualizations were both developed by graduates of est. Collectively, these powerful Mind Science/New Age seminars have graduated more than one million people. Among them are literally tens of thousands of professionals in the business, academic, and social communities. Thus, leaders in science, business, industry, academia, and government have all been profoundly influenced with the philosophy of these groups.
To varying degrees, these seminars constitute an attempt to produce a Western form of “enlightenment” which builds on a platform of Eastern mysticism and, to an extent, occult practice. They have erected an eclectic edifice derived from a large variety of sources, both religious and secular, tailored, in part, to reach the leaders of mainstream America. Their philosophy teaches that a radical operation on a person’s worldview is necessary, transforming it from a Western to more of an Eastern perspective. The seminars are designed to help people realize that they are part of God and, to varying degrees, literal creators of their world and their experience. According to Forum publications, “The Forum is a work place for transformation, a clearing in which people make the distinctions that allow the power of an inquiry into being [ultimate reality] to be expressed really, viably in everyday life.”*
Although these seminars are slickly packaged and can produce extremely powerful transformations by breaking down people psychologically and emotionally, they are potentially destructive psychologically.* Werner Erhard himself once admitted that est was something evil.* We have seen nothing in est or its offshoots that would cause us to question his judgment.
*For documentation see The Facts on the Mind Sciences