It was a quiet January day in 1979 when I left the campus of my university in my blue Pontiac Catalina. The overwhelming sense of freedom and euphoria is a memory that is still palpable 38 years later.

From a distance of time and space, I understand many truths that being in the eye of an alternate reality temporarily obscured. But one of the quietest realizations happened while I was still there. The full understanding of it came, ironically, while fulfilling some required reading for a class. The book was about cults, and my deepest suspicions were brought into the light when I had the full-on epiphany that this place was a cult. I knew I had to extricate myself, but wasn’t quite sure how.

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