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Manipulative and Controlling

Discussion in 'Daily Devotionals' started by Christsfreeservant, Sep 27, 2021.

  1. Christsfreeservant

    Christsfreeservant Senior Veteran Supporter

    United States
    There is something called “gaslighting” which is a manipulative and controlling technique used by master liars and manipulators in order to get preconceived results out of other people. And there are many such master con artists out there who use such techniques to manipulate and to control others, usually without their knowledge.

    They first create scenes by putting on a false persona or by setting up a false situation in order to get a desired result which then they can use against the other person. So, they will fake a challenge or a conflict or they may even fake a confession in order to get the other person to respond in a particular way which they intend to use against the other person.

    There is something they want, some kind of compliance, or they want to make the other person look bad to others, or they want to accuse the other person falsely in order to accomplish a particular goal. It is all about manipulation and control, and even the most aware of us can be caught in their traps if we are not careful and if we are not on guard constantly.

    Especially if we are compassionate and caring people who are passionate about helping others, we might easily fall into one of their traps because we fell for a story that wasn’t true. Or if we are people of conviction and moral purity and if we are passionate about truth and righteousness and against sin and wickedness, we might also be led into one of their traps.

    For, these master manipulators and controllers are very skilled at what they do. They know exactly what to do and to say and how to do it and how and when to say it and in front of whom to do it or to say it in order to accomplish their evil plots against others. They are very skilled actors and performers who know how to move people’s emotions.

    And you may be able to catch some or most of their tricks, but you may not be able to catch all of them. For, if one doesn’t work, they will try another and another until they find one that does work, just like how Satan works, too. And they may wait until you are in a weakened state to get at you, too, because they know your defenses will not be as sharp.

    Some pastors and many politicians and newscasters are very good at this, too. Memes on social media work this way, as well, I have found. First they reel you in with the bait and then they get you on their hook, and then they are able to inflict the intended pain and/or punishment which they preconceived because they have something they want to accomplish.

    It is a lot like that movie I like to quote from where the guy makes a confession and he says, “Remember the squirrels?” “First I knocked them out of their nest with a rock. Then I saved them.” But these manipulators are not looking to save anyone but themselves and what they want out of it, so it may have the appearance of “saving,” but it also may be a trap.

    For, what they are doing is evil. It has a hidden agenda behind it which is not for the good of the people, but which is for the good of their own agendas. They may even appear as the “victim” themselves, or they may appear as “angels coming to the rescue,” when in reality all this was a ruse in order to get us to fall into their trap and to do what they had hoped.

    So, what they are doing is morally corrupt. It is wicked. It is evil. Even if it may have an outward appearance of good, lying underneath is evil intent. And this is why we must be discerning, but even the most discerning of us may not pick up on every trick. And we may fall into some traps. But I am not talking about falling into sin. I am talking about being tricked into believing something that is a lie. And it may cost us.

    But if it does, because we got hornswoggled unknowingly, we can’t worry about the results. They will be what they will be. We just have to trust the Lord in it all and believe that he is going to work all things for good for us who love and obey him, who have been called according to his purpose.

    Matthew 6:25-34 ESV

    “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

    “But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

    “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

    Praise You in This Storm

    Mark Hall and Bernie Herms

    I was sure by now, God You would have reached down
    and wiped our tears away,
    stepped in and saved the day.
    But once again, I say amen
    and it's still raining
    as the thunder rolls
    I barely hear You whisper through the rain,
    "I'm with you"
    and as Your mercy falls
    I raise my hands and praise
    the God who gives and takes away.

    And I'll praise you in this storm
    and I will lift my hands
    for You are who You are
    no matter where I am
    and every tear I've cried
    You hold in your hand
    You never left my side
    and though my heart is torn
    I will praise You in this storm

    I lift my eyes unto the hills
    where does my help come from?
    My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth

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  2. sandman

    sandman Senior Member

    United States
    The government has become fairly adept at using this technique.
  3. anna ~ grace

    anna ~ grace Newbie Supporter

    United States
    Excellent, excellent post. Thank you for posting this.
  4. TheWhat?

    TheWhat? Well-Known Member

    United States
    In Relationship
    Oh, I hope nobody thinks I'm gaslighting. I'm usually very straight forward about my opinions, motives or anything, if others care to get around to it. I've also run into this term on more than one occasion. Wikipedia defines the etymology of the term:

    "Gaslighting" once referred to extreme manipulation that could induce mental illness or justify commitment to a psychiatric institution. It is now used more generally in a non-literal sense and often for rhetorical or vivid effect. The term is now simply defined as to make someone question their reality.
    Gaslighting was a very popular term used in a philosophy forum I used to frequent especially among feminist philosophy, which is rather ironic, given that questioning reality is what philosophers are supposed to do, although in that sense it's far from malicious or manipulative, usually. It is ultimately only one kind of psychological manipulation, of which there are many.

    In an effort to be straight-forward to dispel illusions, which is usually the best policy in my opinion, there are a lot of victims to consider. Religion can induce tremendous psychological harm. Though I'm no longer angry about it, in the past, I was hurt by it as it was instrumental in driving a good friend of mine to suicide. There are people with OCD to consider. There are people affected by scruples. There are people fearful of the loss of salvation and all of these can be more easily manipulated if one knows how to press certain religious/doctrinal triggers. I myself often turn to online sources often, because good spiritual counseling is often not available one on one, and because many churches to me can be harmful when they're not careful or they simply have a different way of evaluating a good sermon. Unfortunately, with the social climate as it is today online, anger and manipulation and all of that negativity spills out there as well. So I often feel more harmed than helped, and sometimes I feel it warrants a debate.

    There is no need for subtlety or hiding one's true motives. When I am sufficiently motivated to enter into a debate with someone, I'm seldom motivated to stop until their error is utterly defeated. But debate is not evil. People can and should learn to be civil.

    And that's also not usually the case. Usually I'm just commenting in one or two posts here and there. Granted, I'm willing to admit that at times, the weight of my opinions can more than ruffle a few feathers, though I've learned to soften up a bit over the years, it's more difficult to avoid than it seems as it's just how my mind works. It's not easy for anyone to willfully submit to censoring.
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021