Ethnocentrism, Consent and a Secret Sorority Called DOS

Seven members of a secret sorority called DOS, connected with the organization known as NXIVM, discuss their decision-making in joining the group. They candidly address the upfront agreements, the use of ‘collateral’ which they willingly submitted, why they submitted it, and why they say their participation in DOS was fully consensual.

…”there’s been a lot of conversation about consent, “was there consent?” and “were you consenting to things you didn’t know?” and all that kind of thing.’

“And it’s really interesting because, you know, anytime we buy a book, or we go into a restaurant, or we do anything, you know we’re consenting to a product based on the context that’s given to you. So based on the cover, based on what’s written on the back, reviews, based on the menu, the description, the photos, whatever it is – you get the context of the thing and then either you agree to buy it – you consent to buy or you purchase or you don’t.’

“You don’t know what the experience is going to be like. You don’t know what it’s going to taste like, you don’t know what the story is going be – you don’t know the content of it. But you’re still consenting based on the context.’

“The way that relates to us is we were given the context of what this was. There was no deception in the context of what this was. There was no lying. It was put straight out: This is for personal growth. This is to push against your fears. This is to achieve your goals quicker. It’s not going to be a ride in the park.’

“This was really for someone who’s really, truly committed to that, who is willing to be uncomfortable, willing to push against those things. So that was all laid out, including the branding, including the lifetime commitment of obedience.’

“And again, the context was, “if you choose to join this, you’re agreeing to obey me. No matter what. It doesn’t matter what I say. You’re agreeing to that.”

“If I didn’t agree with that, if I didn’t want that – and under the context of understanding that this is to help me in my personal growth – which it always was – anything I was ever asked to do in this context was to further my goals. So the context was put out very straight for everyone.”

“For the women who said no to it because they got freaked out by it, it wasn’t for them. They thought it was too tough, they didn’t want to have that kind of a life commitment. That was fine.’

“The women who did agree to this, who did give collateral, they knew the context of what it was. They knew the cover of the book, they saw the picture on the menu, and they agreed to join. They didn’t know what the experience was going to be like, or what the story was going to be like, but the context was never deceptive. It was as it was presented.’

“And so, that’s consent.”

The Master/Slave Relationship in NXIVM’s DOS

Former members of DOS have told me how they considered its “slave/master” relationship. I was told this relationship was structured this way because a person often isn’t aware of the personal obstacles that hold them back in life. Usually those personal obstacles are buried in one’s sub-conscious and surrounded by fears and other unpleasant emotions which keep them from confronting those obstacles on their own. Having a ‘master’, who you had to obey no matter what, along with the discipline this relationship cultivated, was designed to help the slave power through those difficult emotions, and to overcome those personal obstacles.

I was also told that the master’s responsibility was to know what the slave’s goals were. As an outside compassionate observer, the role of Master was to ascertain what obstacles held their slave back, and to always work in the self-interests of the slave, to encourage them, and to help them overcome their personal obstacles to reach their own goals.

Presently in mainstream America, anything called a ‘master/slave relationship’ is considered immoral. We North Americans like to believe we are free individuals who can make up our own minds. Having a “master” goes against every moral code of freedom we tell ourselves we have. And so when most people read the media accounts of a group that has a master/slave relationship, they lose their fucking minds.

This reaction is built in to you as a human being.

Social Science, Ethnocentrism and ‘Cults”

Jonathan Haidt’s “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion” brilliantly exposes this built-in reaction humans have to others who have different moral values than their own. This reaction always includes the emotions of disrespect and disgust.

You know – like Twitter: American Democrats display their disgust and disrespect for Republicans. And vice versa. They each feel the same human emotions for each other – disrespect and disgust – because of their differences in morality.

The assumption here, usually uninspected, is that their own morality is superior, and the only right way to be.

In social science, this is called ethnocentrism.

The first discipline you learn in social science is to check your own ethnocentrism when studying other cultures. If you are to remain rational when studying people with different moral values, you must set your human tribalism aside and look to find why these cultures developed in the way they did. Usually, these cultures are solving problems of survival presented to them by their environment, and that is why they developed their particular cultural morality.

AntiCultism, when it focuses on the differences in morality without regard to what is legal vs illegal, is fundamentally driven by ethnocentrism. It is not a surprise that AntiCultists never teach anyone about ethnocentrism. In fact, AntiCultism exploits this morality reaction in you to manipulate you to go after “cults” in pursuit of generating a moral panic.

AntiCultists sell books, articles, Youtube videos and advertising on podcasts – all by manipulating your ethnocentric intolerance to morality different from your own.

So we must at least be aware of this tribal impulse inside us and try to be tolerant of those who are different. We must commit ourselves to another one of our own moral values – the 1st Amendment rights to the freedom of speech, of religion, and to the freedom of assembly.

DOS Was Not the Only Culture With a Master/Slave Relationship

No matter your personal morality, the Master/Slave self-improvement relationship in DOS was entirely legal. It has roots, and other precedents, in the Guru/Disciple relationship in Tibetan Buddhism, and in many eastern martial arts disciplines. It certainly has precedent in the structure of our own military, and in elite athletic pursuits such as Olympic sports teams.

But Anticultists never mention that, do they?

Because that would provide you context, and calm you down.

There are a lot of people exploiting our intolerant ethnocentric impulses, and our own tribal blindness and hypocrisy, to make money and further their own careers off completely legal behavior. Illegal behavior is entirely different. These are people who know better. And they do it anyway.

When you step back and see the horrendous damage that has been done to peoples lives and careers and families for completely legal behavior – all so that these opportunistic Anticultists in the government and in the private sector can make more money, be more famous, and have more power through the exploitation of ‘cults’ – that’s what’s really disgusting to me.

1 thought on “Ethnocentrism, Consent and a Secret Sorority Called DOS”

  1. This was a comment I received via The Frank Report

    No name
    July 11, 2021 at 1:31 pm


    “I saw your glowing blog post responding to the Dossier Project not answering your questions about consent.

    They were not my questions. They were questions I found on the Internet at a particularly nasty place full of moral condemnation and self-righteous crusading. Those questions seemed like the only rational thing in that place. So I asked the questions on the Frank Report and the Dossier Project addressed them. They didn’t have to. I’m satisfied with their answers.

    Should I be surprised you’re not?

    “It seems you once again have accepted their version of events without fact checking it. Namely the idea that a master knew your goals and was uniquely positioned to help you achieve those. As Allison Mack told the feds, Keith was giving some of the commands, not the masters. He was demanding photos, seduction assignments, etc. I fail to see how those serve anyone but Keith.”

    Where that happened, I would agree – if the commands had to do with the acquisition of “fuck toys”, or something else illegal. But you want to make what you believe to be immoral – yet entirely legal – to be equated with something that is illegal.

    So how many commands initiated from Keith? What were they, exactly? You fail to give any specific numbers here. Is that because you want to make it all look this way?

    Would you be blurring the information so no fact-checking, or critical thinking, is possible?

    “As to Sahajo’s point about not knowing what the experience will be like and likening it to selecting a book by the cover, that is a terrible analogy. It would be more like someone replacing the cover with a completely different book so you had no idea what you were buying, These women were actively lying to potential recruits which is very different from not being able to predict what is going to happen based on true information”.

    Again, you provide no specific lie in the hope that the moral outrage you want to cause makes everyone drop their critical faculties and freak out.

    Do you know what ethnocentrism means? It’s the main point of my post. Why don’t you address it?

    I’ll bet I know: You don’t want people to use their critical faculties. You don’t want them to check their ethnocentrism.

    You want them whipped up into a moral panic.

    ”I would also direct you to Lauren’s testimony about the DOS book. See if you think any of that was in the best interest of the slave.”

    Was the whole manuscript released to the public, or just the cherry-picked parts which you, again, find morally objectionable?

    Your moral crusade here is your own ethnocentrism shining through, and I for one, am not fooled by it. If you want me to condemn your enemies based on your own moral standards, you are going to have to do better than this.

    You are going to need to be more specific.

    ”Lastly I am not sure if you are aware that the yoga community has had multiple sex abuse scandals both in the U.S, and abroad, so I don’t think likening this arrangement to that of a guru makes the point you want to make.”

    Equating “the yoga community” with Tibetan Buddhism shows how ignorant you are of both. And the fact that you left out the Master/Slave dynamics structured into the military that I provided shows how blind you are to your own cultural values, which is another sign of your flaming ethnocentrism.

    “One question I would like to ask: Do you think that when Nicki Clyne was given a moral test she passed? According to Lauren’s testimony she gave seduction assignment to her slaves, she helped cover up Raniere’s involvement in DOS, and she left some electronics and collateral in Mexico out of reach of the authorities. What does that say about her moral character?”

    You are clearly unable or unwilling to understand this blog post, or to think with concepts outside of your own moral bubble. Your moral crusade is not effective here. I’ve already been there, and I’ve already done that.

    Where the law has been broken people have been tried, convicted, and their sentences – such as they are – are rolling out. Yet you will never be satisfied with that. Because, like 99% of anticultists, you are a self-righteous moral crusader.

    Did you know that over 90% of the people who ISIS kills are other Muslims? Do you know why? Because they weren’t Muslim enough.

    Your moral crusade displays the same human intolerance that ISIS runs on. Tribalists and moral crusaders like you, who are clearly incapable of thinking outside of your own morality, must be questioned and exposed. You are a menace to a free society.


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