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Page 1A DEBATE: SATANIC RITUAL ABUSE AND MULTIPLE PERSONALITY THE NEGATIVE SIDE OF THE ARGUMENT by Ralph B. Allison, M.D. Presented at the 1991 Annual Conference of the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness Pala Mesa Hotel and Conference Center Fallbrook, California 92028 March 22, 1991 We are here today to argue whether or not there is a danger to our society by the proliferation of Satanic cults, as evidenced by the revelations of their children who are now suffering from MPD. My negative conclusion is well summarized in an advertizement for a book by Robert Hicks called "The Pursuit of Satan." (1) "Hicks points out that the satanic criminal model is expedient largely due to its economy, reducing to simple formulas such complex problems as drug abuse, teen suicide, and sexual molestation. He examines how satanism has become the new scapegoat for public anxiety, documenting examples in which police have fomented fear by attributing crimes to satanists, indulging in sheer speculation, and promulgating misinformation through the sensationalist news media. Hicks attributes the cult-conspiracy theory to beliefs fueled by Christian fundamentalist sects and to the ungovernable mechanisms of rumor-panics, subversive mythology, and urban legend; his research utilizes a unique blend of law-enforcement methodology, anthropology, folklore, history, sociology, psychology, and psychiatry." I do believe that Satanism exists as a minor, pseudoreligion that is indulged in by some of the misfits of our society. When I lived in Santa Cruz, I recall seeing a long black limousine drive by one day. I was told that it carried Anton LeVey, the founder of the Satanic Church in San Francisco while he was looking for a site for a new church in Santa Cruz. I have seen his daughter propound their beliefs on a radio talk show. My co-author, Ted Schwarz wrote a book on the subject.(2) While working in prison, I have met less than a dozen inmates who professed adherence to the Church of Satan. Schwarz writes extensively about a man he calls Alan Cambridge and his daughter, Heather. But even he could get no primary data from those he believes were responsible for the rituals and the abuse. Aside from the recollections of Heather, he did have secondary sources such as police reports. By ruling out those he could talk to, he was left with those who would never talk. Ritualistic abuse of Heather is graphically detailed, naturally leading up to her developing MPD. But, in her case, this was the goal of the abusers. "Many of the ceremonies were designed to convince Heather that there were two sides to her, a good side for all the world to see and a satanic side that evolved from the nature of her birth. Alan Cambridge had learned hypnosis and through it tried to convince his daughter that she had two separate personalities. This was reinforced by cult rituals in which the members of the group would paint their faces. They would make a four-part checkerboard pattern on their faces with makeup. They would place two black sections diagonally opposite each other and two white squares opposite each other on the other side. Then they would take pieces of clear window glass and hold them in front of their faces, telling Heather they were holding mirrors. "Betty [her father's girlfriend] and her father would secure Heather to the altar before the remaining members entered. Then they would move around Heather, looking closely at her through the pieces of glass while Alan Cambridge told her they were holding mirrors. She came to believe that she was seeing her own face reflected by the people. The black sections reflected Satan and the white reflected the face most people saw. She was being made to believe that there was an evil aspect to her, one only those in the know recognized, yet one that required her to constantly obey the base desires of the cult members." My reading on the subject showed that Satanism is often confused with Witchcraft or Wicca, which is different. Wicca is a pre-Christian pagan fertility religion that has no Satan in its theology. Satanism is a reverse religion with Catholic symbols turned upside down, with worship of what Catholicism despises and hatred of what Catholicism holds dear. One belief is that the goal of the Church of Satan is to undermine and topple the Roman Catholic Church. What is sure is that those who proclaim themselves Satanists most loudly are the various psychopathic misfits of society who want their antisocial behavior sanctioned by an organized religion. The question is whether the parents of the multiples are likely to be in that category. It is wise to remember that we should study history or we are doomed to repeat it. I recently found a history book with a delightful title, "Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds."(3) This book was originally published in London in 1841. I would like to quote a few passages about situations that sound remarkably similar to the claims of satanic involvement in child abuse today. "The Frieslanders . . .[who lived near Munich] had long been celebrated for their attachment to freedom and their successful struggles in its defence . . .Here they managed their own affairs, without the control of the clergy and ambitious nobles who surrounded them . . .Finally, the Archbishop of Bremen, together with the Count of Oldenburg and other neighbouring potentates, formed a league against that section of the Frieslanders known by the name of the Stedinger, and succeeded, after harassing them and sewing dissensions among them for many years, in bringing them under the yoke. But the Stedinger, devotedly attached to their ancient laws, by which they had attained a degree of civil and religious liberty very uncommon in that age, did not submit without a violent struggle. They arose in insurrection in the year 1204, in defence of the ancient customs of their country, refused to pay taxes to the feudal chiefs or tithes to the clergy - who had forced themselves into their peaceful retreats - and drove out many of their oppressors." The Archbishop of Bremen applied for help to Pope Gregory IX who declared "the Stedinger as heretics and witches, encourag[ing] all true believes to assist in their extermination . . .The pope wrote to all the bishops and leaders of the faithful an exhortation to arm, to root out from the land those abominable witches and wizards. 'The Stedinger,' said his holiness, 'seduced by the devil, have abjured all the laws of God and man, slandered the church, insulted the holy sacraments, consulted witches to raise evil spirits, shed blood like water, taken the lives of priests, and concocted an infernal scheme to propagate the worship of the devil, whom they adore under the name of Asmodi. . . . This devil presides at their sabbaths, when they all kiss him and dance around him. He then envelopes them in total darkness, and they all, male and female, give themselves up to the grossest and most disgusting debauchery.'" (pp.473-5) Eight thousand of the Stedinger were killed on the battlefield and the race was extinguished. "Just as absurd and effectual was the charge brought against the Templars in 1307, when they had rendered themselves obnoxious to the potentates and prelacy of Christendom. Their wealth, their power, their pride, and their insolence had raised up enemies on every side; and every sort of accusation was made against them, but failed to work their overthrow, until the terrible cry of witchcraft was let loose upon them . . .They were accused of having sold their souls to the devil, and of celebrating all the infernal mysteries of the witches' sabbath. It was pretended that, when they admitted a novice into their order, they forced him to renounce his salvation and curse Jesus Christ; that they then made him submit to many unholy and disgusting ceremonies, and forced him to kiss the superior on the cheek, the navel, and the breech, and spit three times upon a crucifix; that all the members were forbidden to have connexion with women, but might give themselves up without restraint to every species of unmentionable debauchery; that when by any mischance a Templar infringed this order, and a child was born, the whole order met, and tossed it about like a shuttlecock from one to the other until it expired; that they then roasted it by a slow fire, and with the fat which trickled from it anointed the hair and beard of a large image of the devil. It was also said that when one of the knights died, his body was burnt into a power, and then mixed with wine and drunk by every member of the order." (pp. 465-6) In 1313 the last of the Knights Templar had been executed for these sins, the last being the Grand-Master, Jacques de Molay, and his companion Guy, the commander of Normandy. They died by burning. "In the year 1459, a devoted congregation of the Waldenses at Arras, who used to repair at night to worship God in their own manner in solitary places, fell victims to an accusation of sorcery. It was rumoured in Arras that in the desert places to which they retired the devil appeared before them in human form, and read from a large book his laws and ordinances, to which they all promised obedience; that he then distributed money and food among them, to bind them to his service, which done, they gave themselves up to every species of lewdness and debauchery. Upon these rumours several credible persons in Arras were seized and imprisoned, together with a number of decrepit and idiotic old women. The rack, that convenient instrument for making the accused confess anything, was of course put in requisition . . .Upon these confessions judgement was pronounced. The poor old women, as usual in such cases, were hanged and burned in the market-place; the more wealthy delinquents were allowed to escape upon payment of large fines." (p.478) "In Geneva alone five hundred persons were burned in the years 1515 and 1516, under the title of Protestant witches. It would appear that their chief crime was heresy, and their witchcraft merely an aggravation. Bartolomeo de Spina has a list still more fearful. He informs us that in the year 1524 no less than a thousand persons suffered death for witchcraft in the district of Como, and that for several years afterwards the average number of victims exceeded a hundred annually. One inquisitor, Remigius, took great credit to himself for having, during fifteen years, convicted and burned nine hundred." (p.482) In my practice before going to CDC, I saw about 50 patients who appeared to have MPD. Most of them lived in Santa Cruz where strange people, called hippies and UCSC students, lived. The Santa Cruz mountains were known to have the right vibrations for various occult activities. Forest rangers were said to have found sites where animal sacrifices had been held. Yet not one of those patients ever claimed that their parents had any connection to any bizarre religious group. None claimed to have been exposed to infant sacrifice or other similar behavior. Abuse by parents was garden variety sexual molestation, beating, killing pet animals, shooting past the face, etc. All were believable types of violence. This fact did not stop them from claiming to have had severely exotic psychic experiences themselves. Last year I told this group of a patient who claimed to be a witch and whom I believe pulled the trigger on my bleeding ulcer. One patient claimed that during adolescence she and several friends met in the woods with a wise but evil entity who taught them such skills as how to cast spells on their parents. This entity was never described as being in a living, human form. He was a spirit who talked to his living students and passed on ways they could be hostile toward their elders. I can give you many such stories of patients who describe their being involved in evil practices of a supernatural manner for the purpose of getting back at those they considered enemies, usually their parents. But not one blamed parents for practicing such supernatural behavior. Then we look at the evidence for Satanic practice in general. With our extensive news coverage system, I think we would see items in USA Today or the National Enquirer if such activities came to their attention. If it did, I haven't seen it. Yes, we did have a major expose in Texas a year ago, but that involved a group of drug smugglers. The physical evidence of religious practices was there. I am not sure it was Satanism or Santoria, as the two are commonly confused in the public mind. Everyone has heard about the McMartin school case. There Satanic involvement was a major concern and the existence of an underground room where the children claimed the ritual abuse occurred is still an issue for the parents. No such room could be located by their own investigator, but they are sure their children were not lying. Therefore, it must be there. You also know that no one was found guilty of anything after the most expensive trial in American history. In my own county, we saw the Sheriff of Fresno County convinced by the stories of several children that they had witnessed Satanic activities in the back yard of a home in Paso Robles, 20 miles north of where I live. At great expense, he sent bulldozers to dig for evidence. They demolished the yard and found only a few bones the family dog had buried. There may have been sites where artifacts were found but they did not make much news. Why not? My opponent might claim it is because Satanists are in charge of the news media. Such is the thinking that throws out logic and believes that such an accomplishment could be carried out in absolute secrecy in our country. Whenever I have raised the question of how Satanists can dispose of the bodies of all the children they are claimed to have killed, with no evidence left over and no snitches informing, the answer is that Satanists are too clever to be caught. They are given more credit that the Nazi's Gestapo and Stalin's NKVD, whose mass graves were hidden for years by the ruling government. And those have now been uncovered for all to see. Let me tell you of one case of a multiple claiming Satanic ritual abuse. I did not see this patient but reviewed all available records. She and her husband attended Bible School together. She then decided she was a Lesbian and wanted to move in with her lover. The husband told her she was in cahoots with the Devil and tried to talk her out of being gay. Two years later, while in psychotherapy, under hypnosis she recalled being tied to a broomstick and being threatened with a knife by her grandmother, mother and father, whom she now defined as Satanic cult members. Previously she had complained of sexual abuse by her mother. After a second such session, the doctor showed her the book "The Black Arts" that verified her "recollections" and gave her more material for more memories, including human sacrifices. Later in therapy her personal involvement in Satanic practices was retroactively expanded to childhood, in Bible College and during early years while in therapy. Somehow no one around her knew any of this at the time. How strange! How can we explain the fact that these patients are telling these stories, if we do not accept the truth of the tales? No one can be sure but there are several possibilities. 1. The first is outright lying and fabrication. In my practice in prison it is the norm for an inmate to talk to other inmates and figure out in advance what story to tell the "psych" to get what he wants. If I show a positive interest in one symptom, you can be sure that that symptom will be reported with increasing frequency in my office. If a patient with MPD finds a therapist to be fascinated by accounts of occult activities, then to become a special patient, he/she will come up with a similar story. 2. Use of Dream Mode Processes: Franklin(4) has written what happens when a person uses the dream mode instead of the waking mode of mental processing. Since these patients spend most of their time in a non-waking altered state of consciousness, it is reasonable to view their productions while sick as related to the dream mode. It is characterized by "sensory images; hallucinations, a delusion of experiential reality; varying orientation of time, place and person; a use of parallel and analogical processing, symbols, metaphor and fantasy; internality of emotions; and amnesia."(p.70) It occurs in "deep hypnosis and in waking dissociative states as well as in dreams."(p.70) Much of the thinking of young children is dream like. In this mode "time does not exist, contradictory things exist side by side, psychic reality is substituted for external reality and ideas are comprised of memory images. . . . In imagination [the patient] combines mental images based on past experiences into patterns he has not perceived in reality. . . . They are able to use imagination involving ideas and symbols to create less realistic more complex persons, animals and places."(p.71) In MPD, "the personalities often use dreamlike fantasy in which imagery and symbols are used to represent something real or imaginary to combine schemes in novel ways, as one does in dreams. . . . There is a lack of orientation of time, place and person, and there are many changes in cognitive processing. Logical thinking and insight are lacking or impaired. Information is not organized by waking logic, through sequential cause and effect. Instead, mental elements are combined and synthesized in fluid and discontinuous ways . . . [T]here is . . . an uncritical acceptance of things that are inappropriate, incongruent, or impossible. . . . A person can be merged with someone else; one can be any age, in any place, or experience oneself as someone else."(pp.73-74) 3. Transference factors between patient and therapist: These patients are dealing with severe emotional pain from childhood, and the therapist's job is to make them aware of the pain, accept it and neutralize it. Most multiples would do anything but cooperate in such a painful process. Therefore the presentation of a Satanic cult abuse history can be a useful ploy to keep the therapist busy and to postpone the pain of therapy. What happens when a patient presents such a story? a. The therapist gets curious about checking out the truth of the story and becomes an amateur detective. A detective must first be a skeptic and believe no one, or he is thrown off the trail. He must search out primary sources of information wherever possible and check one story off against another, suspecting liars who would want him to be misled. The point is that a detective is not a therapist. One cannot be both simultaneously. While one is playing detective, one must abdicate the therapist role. b. The therapist stays in the office with the patient and tries to figure out why the patients supplied this particular story. The therapist doesn't deny its truthfulness, but he doesn't know whether it is the truth. If it is a defense, it will get in the way of therapy, and, as the therapist plods down the path of reconstruction, that version of home life will be presented repeatedly to block the way. Neutrality is the key attitude for the therapist when this type of story is presented as the reason for MPD. If the patient wants to hire a professional detective, he/she can find one in the local telephone yellow pages. Conclusion David W. Lloyd, Esquire, Project Director of the National Resource Center on Child Sexual Abuse(5) has this to say on the subject: "Are the accounts of adults who claim to have experienced ritual child abuse as children accurate? "There is some debate about the accuracy of reports by adults who claim to have been childhood victims of Satanic cults decades ago. Those with doubts argue that if these cults were in existence 20 and 30 years ago, at the time these adults were children, we should have heard the same rumors of child maltreatment that we hear today. Instead, there is little or no evidence of their existence and there have been few identified survivors that could independently corroborate each other's accounts of experiences in the same location. Further, these individuals frequently suffer from multiple personality disorder or from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the traumatic childhood experience, but often state that they had no conscious memories of these events until they had undergone hypnosis. Certain forensic experiments by hypnotic suggestion raise doubts about the accuracy of recall of events after hypnotic trances." Soon after I became involved with MPD, I became convinced that the only limitations the human mind has are those we attribute to it. It can do anything, including creating a believable story of Satanic cult abuse that never occurred. REFERENCES 1. Prometheus Books Spring/Summer 1991 Catalogue, Buffalo, NY 2. Schwarz T & Empy D: Satanism, Grand Rapids, MI; Zondervan Books, 1988 3. Macay C: Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. New York; Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1932 (Originally published by Richard Bentley, London, 1841) 4. Franklin J: Dreamlike thoughts and dream mode processes in the formation of personalities in MPD. Dissociation 3:70-80, 1990 5. Lloyd DW: Ritual child abuse: Understanding the controversies. Family Violence Bulletin 6:15-17, 1990 



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