Rolling Stone article about Speed Seduction

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By Eric Hedegaad in the 3/5/98 Rolling Stone:

…Meanwhile, a few blocks away, on University Avenue, a group of guys spread themselves out and slipped into coffee bars, restaurants, bookstores, furniture shops and fancy fragrance emporiums. They called one another "brother" and went by names like Brother Kamal, Brother ESR, Brother Orion, Brother Vijay and Brother 007. They were laughing, whispering and taking long, appraising looks at all the pretty young Stanford girls. Around midnight, Brother Orion caught up with a summer-blond coed named Tara*. Only once before had a man stopped her like this. It made her a bit uncomfortable, but Orion, who was in his mid-twenties and wonderfully pleasant, seemed so sincere, and just the way his bright blue eyes gazed into her own eyes - before she knew it, she was listening quite intently to everything he had to say. Speaking softly, with many long pauses between his words, Orion got her to see a rose in her mind, then to rub the imaginary petals, so soft, against her cheek. Tara smiled, dreamily. "That's right," Orion said. "And now, notice what it's like as that flower turns into your favorite-flavor lollipop from when you were a little girl." A look of bliss came to Tara's face. She seemed full of remembrance. "Now," Orion said, "pop it in your mouth and taste." Tara's eyes widened, her lips parted and in slid the imaginary lollipop. Orion did not stop there. He started whispering to her about how interesting he found it, the way that people connect with their daydreams and fantasies "in those special places," he murmured. And after a while, a curious thing happened: Tara's cheeks flushed and her entire body shivered, as if she'd just been touched, with velvet hands, in that most special of special places.

It was all quite amazing, and before Orion hooked up with Ross Jeffries and became his student, none of it would have been possible, just as anything similar would have been impossible for all the other brothers there that night. Jeffries had changed them. He had changed their lives. He had taught them the secrets of Speed Seduction. WHAT A REGULAR GUY WANTS more than anything, always has, always will, is to land some nooky far beyond his reach. He has neither looks nor power nor money nor fancy car, none of that good babe- getting shit, and yet he dreams the ancient dream: to be able to dump Harriet in favor of Cindy and thus, for the benefit of all generations to come, divert the usual flow and direction of his genetic puddle. This would be a wonderful thing, he feels. And even then, thinking of it, a whole range of possible ancillary benefits springs to mind: He'd be less shy; his complexion would clear up; his career would take off. In all ways, he would be better. And yet how is this ever to come true? Is there not someone who can make it so?

In modern times, the first theorist to tackle the problem was one Eric Weber, who in 1970, as a very shy, very horny young man, bought a $13 tape recorder and walked around Manhattan asking girls questions like, What would a guy like him have to do to pick up a girl like her? He self-published his findings in a book titled How to Pick Up Girls!, placed a few ads in Penthouse and went on to sell well more than1million copies of the thing. In the main, however, the advice was less than life-changing: "The first and really the only thing it takes to pick up girls is to talk to them.... That's all there is to it. If you can do that, you can really pick up girls. By the truckloads!"

Nonetheless, for the next two decades, Weber seemed to have a lock on the market. You wanted a couple of salutary tips on meeting women, his book was about it. Only a few years ago, however, some other titles began to show up - not in bookstores, mostly, but via the Internet or by mail order. There was How to Pick Up Beautiful Women, by John Eagan; How to Be the Jerk Women Love, by FJ. Shark; A Bartender's Guide on How to Pick Up Women, by Bryan Redfield; How to Date Young Women, by R. Don Steele; plus a few others. For the most part, they took the old Weber notions and simply stretched them in a few new directions; the methodologies took no real quantum leaps.

But then a book arrived that was far, far different. It was titled How to Get the Women You Desire Into Bed: A Down and Dirty Guide to Dating and Seduction for the Man Who's Fed Up With Being Mr. Nice Guy, by Ross Jeffries . It came with its own front-page disclaimer: "The reader is warned that the use of some or all of the techniques in this book may result in legal consequences, civil and/or criminal. Use of this book is done at your own risk."

…He truly believed in what he was teaching, because it was based primarily on what had so thoroughly changed his own life just a few years earlier: neurolinguistic programming (NLP). An entirely wigged-out approach to psychology and communication that had been around since the mid- 1970s, NLP brought about change through the use of trance states, hypnotic language patterns, embedded commands and lots of other weird shit - and it promised these changes in half-hours or hours, not months or years. Of course, the psychiatric establishment dismissed it as New Age nonsense and hocus-pocus, yet what was psychiatry but a bunch of money-grubbing assholes who thought nothing good could come from anything less than, say, seven years of therapy and by that very belief sealed any poor sap of a patient's fate for the better part of a decade? NLP, on the other hand, cut to the chase and got on with it. In many ways, it was at the heart of the entire human-potential movement. For example, personal-growth giant Tony Robbins used it all the time in his training especially when it came time to get his seminar goers to walk on hot coals. And now there was Ross Jeffries saying stuff like, "If you want to walk on coals, go see Tony, but if you want to get laid, come see me!" and, quoting Voltaire, "Give me ten minutes to talk away my ugly face and I will bed the Queen of France!"

It was a powerful message, made all the more powerful because it seemed so honest of Jeffries to admit that learning Speed Seduction took both intelligence and practice, and that even then it wouldn't work in all cases. "It works about seventy percent of the time - and the rest of the time, nothing else is going to work, either," he liked to say. "At least with SS you find out in less than ten minutes instead of ten dates, ten weeks or %Io,ooo in the hole." This was awfully appealing, and his teachings were eventually taken up by about qo,ooo students from around the world. Some of them were weenie-loser-geeks, some simple horndogs and some ju st hopeful seekers of an edge up on the next Joe. They came from all kinds of backgrounds (though computer nuts seemed to predominate), and almost all of them referred to Jeffries as their most beloved Guru of Gunch. No one thought there could be a downside to learning what he taught, no dreadful, soul-sucking consequences such as one might get in a Faustian-bargain-type scenario. And so they swore their loyalty to Jeffries, and he, in return, promised to give them something they had never had before.

"I can teach how to give men a massive and quick way to decide on a woman's potential and to create an attraction. This is not about dating. Speed Seduction is meant to replace dating. Dating is for women you're already sleeping with." When Jeffries got to talking like this, he could not stop. His mouth ran over with how revolutionary SS was, how it was absolutely real and not some sham, and how truly magical and life-changing a teacher he was. His ego ran wild. He dropped names shamelessly among his Speed Seduction converts were, he said, Richard Brodie, the bestselling author of Virus of the Mind and the original author of Microsoft Word, and Lewis De Payne, the infamous hacker and a pal of convicted felon Kevin Mitnick's, better known as the Dark Side Hacker. Then, to distance himself from all this direct self- promotional blather, he would quote other people talking about how great SS was, as in, "Lewis De Payne once said, `You know what you're doing with SS? You're doing the ultimate hack. You're creating super user privileges on someone's core account and allowing yourself to create a password that you wouldn't normally have.' And he's right!"

At the same time, though, Jeffries didn't claim all credit for the development of SS. He talked incessantly about SS as an open- architecture kind of thing, constantly being improved upon by the brothers in the field.

JOHN GRINDER, THEN A LINguistics professor, and Richard Bandler, then a student of theoretical psychology, first began working on what would become NLP in the early seventies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. The course that Grinder taught, with Bandler's help, was known to various UCSC students as Mind-Fucking los. The two professors theorized that any subjective human experience - all the terrible shit that happens in life can be quickly and easily transformed in the unconscious mind through the subtle and cunning use of language, with the listenerpatient settling into a very light, conversationally induced hypnotic trance. This radical notion stood conventional therapy on its head - it said you didn't have to work through past traumas to get healed - and formed the basis of the therapeutic model of NLP. But Bandler and Grinder soon realized that the same concept could be used just as effectively in persuasion, by anybody who wanted to persuade anybody of just about anything. Shortly thereafter, Science Digest wrote that NLP was potentially "the most important synthesis of knowledge about human communications to emerge since the explosion of humanistic psychology in the sixties." Naturally, therapists and used-car salesmen around the country were in awe.

For Jeffries, Speed Seduction as a practical application of NLP was about building altered states of consciousness in both the seducer and the seducee. For the guy, using various kinds of affirmations, the idea was to install in himself all manner of ferocity, playfulness, clarity, outrageousness and cockiness, no matter what kind of weenie-loser-geek, horndog or edge seeker he may have been before. Thus supercharged and in control, the guy then engaged himself in a singular mission: to capture and lead the imagination of the HB of his choice. He might start by saying to the woman, "I have an intuition about you," which would perk up her ears - after all, he was talking about her favorite person, herself - and lead her from a state of presumed neutrality (the guy was probably not the best-looking guy in the coffee shop) to definite interest and intrigue. He might then offer to analyze her handwriting. O r he might tell her that she was a very visual person and proceed to conjure up images in her mind - deeply sensual images - by telling her metaphoric stories, stories that SSers called patterns. Full of sensory-rich descriptions, these patterns were cone structed mostly of so-called process language - vague, nonspecific wordings that allowed the HB's imagination to roam and that led the HB into a dreamy kind of trance state. They were also full of sexual suggestion, with the typical pattern making liberal use of words like open, penetrate, come inside, surrender, below me (pronounced blow me) and your mind (pronounced you're mine). Each of the patterns had a name among others, there was the Discovery Channel pattern, the Incredible Connection pattern, the Peak Experience pattern and the much-loved, often-used Blow Job pattern, which luridly described eating a piece of chocolate and ended with the suggestion that "It's like an explosion of pleasure in your mouth" - and could be run verbatim, although the ultimate goal, for advanced SS students only, was to be able to make up patterns on the spot.

The terrible thing for Jeffries was that any time he told people in the media about this process - Jerry Springer, say, or Sally Jessy Raphael - they basically just laughed in his face, like it was some kind of Saturday Night Live joke or a con, and in either case a disgusting, outrageous affront to women. On the other hand, the great thing was that in the field, at a coffee shop or a quiet bar, with time enough to play out the entire SS methodology, with its set of language progressions, the stuff really seemed to work.

Now, at the Broadway Bar and Grill, on the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, Jeffries was himself entering into an altered state. He had his own way of getting there, by humming the Rocky and Bullwinkle theme song, saying to himself, "Yummmm," and then, out loud, saying, "Let's go have some fun!"

He glanced down the bar at a blonde who looked like Sharon Stone, only sweet. In an instant, Jeffries was by her side. Her name was Lacey. That very evening she had broken up with her boyfriend. She said she thought she knew Jeffries. Jeffries smiled and said he thought he knew her, too. He paused, frowned, modulated his voice and in almost a whisper, he began running a pattern on her. He said, "You know, I was watching the most interesting show on the Discovery Channel last night. They were interviewing people who make their living designing attractions for amusement parks. And they were talking about the elements that make up the . . . ideal attraction. They said there are three parts to the . . . ideal attraction {pointing to himself}. First, when you experience the . . . ideal attraction, you feel a state of high arousal. The . . . ideal attraction . . . makes your heart beat faster, and your breathing gets faster, and you just feel that amazing rush all over. And then another part of the ideal attraction is, it's fascinating. You just feel so enthralled that you want to . . . take this ride multiple times; as soon as you . . . get off .. . you want to get back on again." He continued in this way for quite a while, during which Lacey's eyes did not waver; they were fixed to his. "And as I was watching, I thought to myself, `Isn't that the perfect description of the ideal connection between two people and how you feel when you've met someone you really like? I mean, I think when you . . . make that kind of connection with me . . . you just . . feel that rush of . . . excitement . . . and you just want to be with that person a lot."

At this point, Lacey wore the expression that Jeffries often referred to as the doggy-dinner-bowl look. It was unmistakably wanton. She reached over, put her hand on his and said, "It's like sex, isn't it? Or that first kiss."

Later on, after it was all over, Jeffries said, "Oh, man, that was too much. I mean, isn't this like the most fun youcan have, man - fucking with people, playing with their minds?"

…NLP. First he did therapeutic work, mostly curing guys of shyness and phobias. Then he got interested in the persuasion side of NLP and somewhere along the line got the bright idea to try the stuff out on girls. He couldn't believe the results. "I realized," he said, "that attraction, and love, is not a thing. It's a process that people undergo, and you can trigger the process."

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