• Recovering Agency

  • Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control
  • By: Luna Lindsey
  • Narrated by: B.J. Harrison
  • Length: 20 hrs and 59 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (106 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In 2012, Mormon General Authority Marlin K. Jensen acknowledged that members are leaving the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints "in droves". Access to the internet is often credited and blamed for this mass exodus, where members learn about problematic doctrines and cover-ups of LDS history.

Many are happy as Mormons. And many are not. Those who leave, and those doubters who stay face struggles that few others can understand. Much of this suffering is caused by manipulative and controlling techniques pervasive throughout LDS doctrines and culture. Understanding these techniques will help recovering Mormons overcome the effects of belonging to a high-demand group.

As a former Mormon, Luna Lindsey experienced this coercive persuasion firsthand. Recovering Agency presents years of research into social psychology and the science of cult dynamics, to describe 31 mind-control techniques alongside examples of their use in Mormon scripture, lessons, and from the pulpit.

Even if you have never been Mormon, chances are that coercive influence techniques have been used to manipulate you at some point. Listen on and learn the answers to longstanding questions about this unique American religion and about the human mind.

©2013-2014 Luna Flesher Lindsey (P)2016 Luna Flesher Lindsey

What listeners say about Recovering Agency

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Extremely helpful book to further heal after a faith deconstruction.

I’m almost 31 months into my faith transition out of black-and-white thinking Mormonism.

While this book would have been premature for me during the first 12-18 months, while I was fully deconstructing Mormon Church History and conservative Christianity, this book is exactly what I needed at this stage in my journey.

The two most important and helpful books for me before this one were Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, and God: A Human History.

At this point, I’d now add this book to have been equally as helpful to me as Sapiens and God.

Thank you Luna for your work on this :-)

5 people found this helpful

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I highly recommended this book

I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand how Mormonism and Mormon authority figures exert mind control. This book draws upon the work of cult experts and is a worthwhile read for anyone who feels like they have been in any kind of cult or mind control group or relationship.

5 people found this helpful

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Set free!

The reader was great! Information was liberating. I will be recommending this book to all my post Mormon friends. I stopped attending 5 years ago, but so much mindset was still left in there guiding my choices. I know I will listen to it 2 or 3 more times to fully digest this complex information on mind control. Startling and disturbing! I’m so glad I broke free, thanks Luna for removing more blocks!

4 people found this helpful

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I kept saying, "YES!" throughout this helpful book

I took on a huge study back in the 80's that changed my LDS faith forever. I tried to recover my TBM beliefs for decades as I continued to be obedient and raise my children in the faith. Through it all, obedience has caused me so much grief, yet I have not been able to let go. At the turn of the century, when the Internet finally opened my eyes to the fact that I was not alone, this was a huge opportunity to see how others handled what I had experienced. Many have left the church because their integrity demanded it. By contrast, I feel weak and confused because I haven't found that kind of courage.

Then I recently read Steven Hassan's book and became familiar with the BITE model. This enlightened me as to why I am unable to break away even though I believe I see quite clearly that I can never believe what I'm "supposed to" as a member. That lifelong controlling voice whispers, "What if it's true??" My reasonable mind laughs at that idea, but I still can't stifle the voice.

So this book was another giant step toward a healthier place for me. The studies and information gathered and presented so well are exactly what I would have hoped to find if I had the time and energy to do the research. I feel that it presented it all in a way that will allow me to share it with those I love who are "worried" about me. It may be a hard read for many, but the presentation is respectful enough toward those who believe and wish to continue to believe as round pegs in round holes. For me, the ideas and psychology explained cause me to exclaim, Yes! That is how it feels! " Or "Yes! THAT makes sense!" I want to give me loved ones a fair chance to to understand where I am, and I hope this will help them do so.

The only negative is that the narrator is a man telling a woman's story. It's disconcerting to hear a male voice talking about getting pregnant and other female experiences. The wrong narrator, for sure, but I opted not to take away a star because I find the book too extraordinarily helpful to give it less than 5 stars.

As I abandon all the unkind, unloving, un-Christlike thinking and behavior that I was compelled to embrace as an obedient member, I"m beginning to feel more confident in my ability to use agency and to understand what I'm experiencing. One of my "YES!" moments was the part that stated that if anyone can get you to believe or embrace the absurd, they can get you to engage in atrocities. I hope my actions have always fallen short of being atrocities, but my LGBTQ friends and family might not see it that way. Thank goodness, they are far more understanding and forgiving than fellow church members have been when they learn I support ideas and philosophies that go against present LDS doctrine. I usually stay pretty quiet. But yesterday, my 8-year-old granddaughter blurted out, "I hate lesbians." She's learned this from somewhere, but certainly not at home. So I will at least speak up when my integrity demands it as I did to her to help her understand how Christ treated others and how the church can take a long time to let go of ignorance that hurts others. I don't want to be burned at the stake (house), so I try to stay respectful, just as this book advises. I have a long road ahead, but thank you, Luna Lindsey, for helping me edge toward a more peaceful existence.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Mostly fair

To be fair I have to say my Father was born LDS so I am not unbiased. For the most part the book gets it right on history. On doctrine my family seem to not be confused they just obey as they have been raised.

2 people found this helpful

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Poor Narration

True as this story may be I had to return this book. It was hard to listen to. The Narrater's voice was very dry and flat. And the topic covered in the first one third of the book read too much like a text book.

2 people found this helpful

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Hard to get through

First off the narrator is HORRIBLE - a man reading a woman’s text in the most exaggerated and flighty way. What possessed the publisher to pick this voice artist is beyond comprehension. On top of this, the text is repetitive. Good editing could have cut this to a third of the length. Some good info but nothing new. Too focused on LDS = a cult. The very last bit before the conclusion where she goes through the story of Adam & Eve tagging each verse by brainwashing technique is perfect and sums up her whole thesis. Just read that.

4 people found this helpful

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More like a school research paper than a book.

This read more like a school research paper than a book, which was fine, and very interesting for what it was, but it never flowed like the author had any expertise of her own. As a exmormon, it was very interesting, and thoughtful as a breakdown of many of the false mind tricks you can carry with you, even after breaking away from Mormonism.

1 person found this helpful

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Unlistenable

Seriously, what is UP with this narrator? His diction is so stilted and his phrasing so odd and robotic he sounds like a sketch comedy actor.
I simply could not listen another second longer. Ridiculous!

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

excellent!

I was impressed with Ms. Lindsey's knowledge of Mormonism. I'm glad to be out of this cult as well!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Brendan Van Trigt
  • 10-23-21

thorough

one of the most persuasive books I've ever read. very well formed and articulated. I finished feeling Informed and aware of the tactics of the church to control me.