Landmark Forum Review – Scam, Cult or Pyramid Scheme?

18 Dec

I attended the Landmark Forum in Bangalore over this weekend (14-18 December 2012). The reason to join the Landmark Forum – henceforth referred to as LF – was an interesting narration of experience by a good neighbor friend who was hugely benefited by attending the forum a couple of years ago. Seeing a few positive differences in him for the last couple of years in terms of career and energy levels, I thought of trying it out at my own will and NOT influenced by any individual as such (I hear that many of the sign up under pressure from a loved one or people that matter)

Based on my experience at the Landmark Forum, let me give you some information on what it’s all about, whether it works for all and what to expect at the Landmark Forum.

What is Landmark Forum?

The Landmark Forum or LF is the FIRST in the series of the many personal development courses that the Landmark Education offers. Once signed up for the LF, your life doesn’t end with the forum itself. A series of other courses namely Landmark Advanced Course, Landmark Course for Leadership and Self Expression, Various weekly seminars (seminars come at a fee in some countries, but free in India) and other courses follow the forum itself. And this process takes a few months or years based on how many courses you take. However, you have the opportunity to stop with the 3.5 days long Landmark Forum itself.

The LF invariably happens across the weekend starting on a Friday at 9AM and ending on Sunday night at around 11:30PM. In addition, there is an evening session on the following Tuesday from 7:00PM to 10:30PM. Each day (i.e. Friday to Sunday) is rather long and ends at only around midnight. There will be four continuous sessions of about 2.5 hours long each day and you get one hour lunch & dinner break another half an hour break in between. Please note that there is no lunch, dinner or tea/coffee provided on the premises and only drinking water will be available. It’s hence a very stressful three days because even during the breaks, there will be assignments that need to be completed which includes written assignments, calling up people etc.

At the moment, the three and half days LF costs about Rs.10,000/- in India and I hear that it costs around $500 in the US. People from all walks of life and in all age groups above 15 years can attend the LF. There is a separate course for kids in the age group of 8 to 12.

Usually you can expect anywhere between 50 to 500 participants in each forum. In Indian conditions, it’s usually 250 people upwards in each session. The same content and the same delivery method is practiced across all countries though the ‘Coach’ who delivers the forum in India is mostly an Indian leader – one of the 55 Landmark Forum leaders worldwide, in his own words.

How does the Landmark Forum work?

The Landmark Forum’s approach is to deliver their course modules from their bible (same for all countries) by the leader who sits on high chair on the stage. The participants sit in the stand listening to his sermons. One thing I liked about the forum is that they do not use any Powerpoint presentation or slideshow to deliver the speech. The leader starts with welcoming you by explaining the rules of the forum – those who are not willing to abide by the rule can leave the forum in the first half an hour with their money refunded.

The typical rules are:

  • Your commitment and ‘word’ to complete the forum as per its design
  • In order to achieve the extra ordinary life (powerful living, new possibilities etc) after attending the forum, you must agree that you are ‘coachable’ by the LF leader
  • You must adhere to the forum timings and complete all assignments
  • One should not consume any alcohol or drugs till the forum completes on Tuesday. You shouldn’t start any new medication either – of course one can continue the medications he/she is already on. The participants cannot take pain killers like Aspirin after the long day but the leader will promise to teach you some tricks to get rid of your headache or body pain
  • People with clinical psychological conditions cannot attend the forum and so are the people come under the categories of the forum’s legal/content/general agreement – A six page agreement that you have to sign to protect from any legal proceedings

A couple of people from the forum left during the introductory speech itself after hearing the coach’s tone but I decided to hold on to become the so-called ‘Landmark Forum Graduate’ who can lead an extra ordinary life at some point – or right after the 3.5 days course as promised.

What to expect on the first day?

As per the coach, the LF is all about ‘Transformative’ learning model based on ‘Ontology’principles and not informative learning. Hence, you must be willing to be abide by all rules to transform yourself and the people that matter to you towards an extra-ordinary life in the offing post the forum.

50% of the first day (Friday) goes on with the coach delivering his speech in a way to highlight how the Landmark forum is going to transform you and how you have to be ‘enroll’ to the idea in order to discover ‘new possibilities’ in life. They use terminologies such as ‘already always listening’, ‘vicious circle’, ‘context’ and ‘rackets’ on the first day. Essentially, it’s about your prejudices in life based on what you were taught by your predecessors, somebody’s actions and your wrong interpretations, how your justified behaviors are in fact of pain to others or people ‘you are inauthentic with’, in their terminology.

(A word of caution: The definitions in the Landmark bible is meant to confuse people who talk and understand normal English. Some of those theories may sound reasonable if explained in plain English but ridiculous and defies common sense when explained in their language. But if you question the leader, you get trashed and I shall explain how)

The breaks during the first day and all night breaks will be used for assignments that include writing about your rackets, people whom you have been inauthentic with (in your behavior, anger, neglecting, abusing whatever) and calling them up to convince them (enrolling as they call) about how they can also lead an extra ordinary life by enrolling into these philosophies. The leader from time to time will remind you that those people should be called along for the fourth day’s evening session to listen to your and LF’s revelations.

The shameless marketing (of sorts) about the Landmark Forum and extra ordinary benefits in offer will continue during 50% of day one. The leader will remind you of the need to be enrolling which essentially mean that you are required to share your new possibilities in such a way that others are touched, moved and inspired (and finally literally enrolled to the Landmark forum)

The method of LF speeches & Interaction

The following is what to expect during the first three days in terms of the leader – forum members interactions.

  • The leader will be modulating his voice from low to exceptionally high volume from time to time. It will be so loud at times that most weak-hearted people will shiver and keep silence. The modus operandi is instilling fear in people, make them weak and force them buy into the ideas discussed
  • Even if you ask any questions about your particular problem or forum content, it’s most likely that you are yelled at (after inviting you to the mic near the stage) and called ‘you ordinary idiot leading an ordinary sham life’, ‘you jerk you have the courage to think so’, ‘you are disgusting’, ‘it’s your pathetic analytical mind that’s talking’, ‘you arrogant jerk’ etc. Be prepared to hear that and much more than that
  • It’s highly likely that the leader come really hard on people with bigger egos (e.g. a few IIT graduates, the so-called highly successful people in life, rich people etc)
  • The leader in our case also cut some good jokes in between his yelling and shouts during delivery. I must really admit that he possessed a very good sense of humor when talking about our life situations. That’s the way things are delivered in the first two days – Suppressing your ego and breaking it is the first step by defaming you in public. Many people will breakdown in this process and become silent there after or listen to him completely
  • In the case of relationship issues, you will be forced to call up your partner or the person with whom you have an issue regardless of where the problem lies. So it’s like the one-size fits all kind of delivery when it comes to LF

Second day

The second day is pretty much about topics like ‘I’ and your ‘Identity’. In the process, they will also talk about a new world and a new language to take you to newer heights. It also talks about anxiety, fear and some exercises to observe the fear and overcome it. At the end of the meditation-like exercise, some attendees revealed that their fear is gone and they will share the freedom and relief that they are enjoying on the stage mic. Others who didn’t feel any difference will be told that the fear will be always there and you have to live with it. Ridiculous at this point! You will be also asked to an assignment on three bold decisions that you would take at that moment.

The second day’s assignment will again include convincing people about enrolling your ideas. This part, at this point, will go to the nasty level of influencing people to join the Landmark Forum where as they try their best to explain that ‘Enrollment of ideas’ is different from ‘Registration’. Landmark forum’s shameless MLM (Multi-Level Marketing or Pyramid scheme) style of marketing starts on the first and second day itself. The only difference is that you as a member don’t get paid to enroll more people. And the enrollment (or registration) of more people is achieved via some kind of emotional arm-twisting and by bruising your ego by calling you a ‘shameless and arrogant jerk without integrity’ several times.

At this point, i.e. at 11PM on the second day’, I told the coach that I cannot do the second assignment of enrolling people. I was called to the stage and asked questions like ‘What is enrollment?, ‘Are you coachable?’. He kept shouting at me about my arrogance, ego and shameless behavior and called me a jerk and an idiot with an analytical mind etc. I replied that I am coachable and agree to most of the content but not an unreasonable assignment. My thought was that, if I am benefited from LF content and course, I would anyhow ask people to join LF but why even before seeing any benefit at all?

He then pronounced that due to my arrogant behavior my wife and kids are struggling for years. He pronounced that even people like Rahul Dravid who attended the Landmark forum was very humble and felt that I do not seem to be coachable unless I agree to all rules. I said, I still have my conviction and analytical brain working even after two days of the forum and until I am convinced, I am not going to enroll people or do that part of the assignment.

After about 10 minutes of argument, he asked me to get out by taking money instead of spoiling the spirit of the forum. Obviously, a few more hands had risen in my support and he felt the threat of sabotaging the cause. I obliged stating that I am not convinced about their unreasonable marketing strategy and hence quitting. I was really boiling, I wanted to call him all that he had called me in the name of ‘coaching’ me but I thought that would affect a fraction of the people who were seemingly satisfied and benefitted having attended the forum.

(The leader called me up the next day, apologized for his rude behavior and asked me to come back. May be that was part of the strategy so that they don’t get sued for emotional abuse despite taking a lot of signed agreement from the participants. He said he’s keeping his ‘word’ of refunding the money. I said I don’t care about the money but your unethical marketing practices. And my Landmark Forum ended there after two whole stressful days!).

The third day

Though, I didn’t attend the third day, it seems that’s when the whole lot of change will happen. In fact, at the end of first and second day, the leader will keep shouting that the forum has not even started but you are already feeling change etc. Things are supposed to be changing dramatically on the third day just like putting on a ‘Switch’. So I called up a couple of attendees whom I had met on the forum and they had mixed opinions on the Landmark Forum’s third day.

Many of the attendees believed that on third day, incidents from their past (in fact, an assignment from second day end) will be analyzed that would have shaped your characteristics as they are today. There will be sermons on how permanent transformation can be achieved by redefining ourselves etc.

Essentially after three days of stressful attending and a few phone calls you will be somehow convinced that life is meaningless and you have the power to make choices, deal with situations etc. All the stress that you went through and the revelations, apologies (you make many of them and cry during the first two days) made by the participants would be relieved by now and you will suddenly feel power – some of the attendees, that is. To me, this sounds quite natural. You were stressed, made look like a fool in the forum, your ego totally busted, tranquilized and at the end you were pronounced powerful and winner. Many weak-hearted people attending the forum at this point would feel happy and relieved and hence would feel that attending LF really helped them. But if you ask anybody to explain how they feel or tangible result – even after many weeks, months of attending even the advanced course – they may not be able to explain it.

(By the way, in order to make your transformation more meaningful and permanent, you will be asked to continue with the seminar series and then the paid Advanced course)

Does the Landmark Forum (LF) Work for all?

In my opinion, it works for a sub-set of people who have been carrying the guilt throughout their life due to infidelity, crimes done in the past, estranged relationships, unethical practices and specific fear of something in life might just find the forum as a great platform to confess and subsequently call up the affected people t apologize. If those people (e.g. parents) are not alive, you even have the opportunity to write an apologetic letter to them during the course. Essentially the confessions and the philosophies in the forum make such people relieved.

For most other people – who live a normal life without many issues – it’s not going to work. But even these people will not admit that LF didn’t work for them because they don’t want themselves look like fools or prey to the LF tactics that tamed them. Essentially don’t even think of attending LF if you are just going through normal mid-life crisis, predictable boss-subordinate issues, MIL-DIL issues, short-term career issues etc.

Due to the very reason that it works for some people, I don’t call LF a scam. It’s a different way of addressing your issues in life and get rid of fear. But if you would ask me, I would go for a good counselor along with the affected parties if I have any issue of that sort. That would be way better than reverting to a big forum and a lame Landmark Forum leader or coach (An extra-ordinary jerk, I must say) to solve my issues.

It’s not a Cult because they don’t associate themselves with any religious acts or even acts of crime or anti-social activities. Also, LF participation or further courses are completely at your will though they will brainwash you to the core to get as much sign-ups as possible. Signing up for LF forum don’t make you anti-social or make you stay away from normal living and hence it’s no cult at all.

Shameless Marketing

They don’t do MLM or pyramid scheme in a sense that whoever signs up new people are not actually getting monetarily benefited. But in reality, it’s nothing but a very successful Viral marketing strategy that they have smartly invented.

The evening session on Tuesday is all about shameless marketing that the gathering (your invitees with whom you are ‘inauthentic’ with and hence apologized) has to experience. This marketing takes place in a very convincing manner that you will be forced to sign up your dear ones and friends for this. Most of the attendees will fall for this strategy since they are forcibly contacted by the forum members who even apologized to them as per the plan. This works like wonders because the evening gathering thinks that their wards are transformed in just 3.5 days (with all those apology, letters, tears etc). In reality, it’s more like a emotional brainwashing.

And during the second day itself, there will be announcements about the Landmark Advanced Course which they will market so convincingly that even before seeing any result from LF, many people will sign up for this. They will say that in five days time, the Advance course prices are going up by 50% or so and you have one last day today (or latest by next day) to sign-up for the future course at the discounted price. And you won’t believe, many of the fools fell for that.

Final Verdict

Well, if you are one of those who are living under some stress and badly want to vomit out one of your wrong doings or regret from the past thereby relieving a bit, then LF is for you. But then, be warned that in order to address such issues, you don’t really need a forum such as Landmark but take the help of a good counselor.

In order to protect and respect the privacy of those who took part in the forum with me, I do not want to go into the details of what kind of issues and confessions people made. But there were real extreme cases of crime, infidelity, extranged-abusive relationships, extra-marital affairs, sex-maniac behaviors, dangerous obsessions, drug abuse etc that forced some of them to participate in the forums. And some others, without any issues at all, were forced to sign up by their wards – may be after being part of the evening session sometime in the past. The leader was trying his best to prove that even such people’s life (those sexagenarians and happy senior citizens) is sham, disgusting and they need a transformation in life. All these sermons were really frustrating for anyone who has led his/her life following some ethics and who were brought up with good values in life.

Essentially it didn’t work for me and I am sure it wouldn’t work for people like me. As a matter of fact, LF itself agrees that the program doesn’t work for all. Even worse, there have been incidents of suicide, extreme mental conditions and prolonged trauma reported during and after attending of the LF forum. LF themselves have admitted to such incidents though the occurrence of such extreme incidents have been rather rare compared to the number of people attended the Landmark Forum.

Hence before signing up with the Landmark forum, please think for yourself and read carefully the agreement that you are signing!

188 Responses to “Landmark Forum Review – Scam, Cult or Pyramid Scheme?”

  1. Blanche 15. Dec, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

    I literally just left an introductory meeting, if it could be called that. A friend asked that I attend as it has helped her make some groundbreaking – breakthroughs. I thought it was informative, but I actually do not see the benefit in spending my money to do the things I have sense enough to do on my own. When I first arrived, I was asked about an area in my life that I would like to change/ experience. I offered that I would like to change my finances. That being said, why would I pay for classes to fix that area. Logically, I would be taking a step backwards, no?

  2. premi1234 23. Jan, 2015 at 10:59 pm #

    Dear friends,

    I have recently enrolled for LM forum, though a close old time friend. I just attended a guest session and I cannot really say I got convinced completely, but yes I enrolled.

    Assuming that the volunteers are really volunteers (i.e. unpaid), I liked the experiences of the participants. There were people from all walks of life, at different stages of success (the way we define success). I felt that it is worth it if the course meets even 50% of the stated objectives.

    I saw someone, struggling to complete one exam for many years, speak so wonderfully about relationships. You almost feel that failures can make someone an emotional wreck and despite that people can come to volunteer for a full day, there must be some substance. The self confidence and a sort of glow that makes you feel that there is something good in everyone.

    Let us hope it works. Will update you guys

    • Rohit 03. Feb, 2015 at 3:55 pm #

      I attended the Landmark Forum in June 1998, during my summer break from college. I was a person who never took notes in class, and was languishing at the bottom of the class. Went in for the program out of curiosity – many of my batchmates in college had visible transformation from the program, and I wanted to know what caused it. Safe to say that I got the shock of my life when one of my batchmates borrowed my notes in the next semester to study for an exam. And despite the low grades (<5 CGPA), I still managed to get my dream job.

      Many times, we never know what will click. The trick is to participate as much as one can, do the assignments, and be open to some areas of life being transformed from the program.

      Wish you all the best.

    • nemo_cool 10. Apr, 2015 at 2:14 pm #

      Hi Premi – Have you done your first session? Any comments. I have been signed up for the first 3 day session. My colleague kind of forced me into signing up. I said ‘No’ so many times..then once she said that she will pay for me, I fell into the trap and paid myself. My session begins 17 Apr 2015.

      • chetan 03. Jul, 2015 at 7:12 pm #

        hi, can u plz tel me how it went, how u liked it???

  3. Aditya 30. Jan, 2015 at 1:09 pm #

    Thanks for the review, I got what I was looking for.

  4. Blueboy 25. Feb, 2015 at 10:32 pm #

    I did multiple introductory sessions because a friend of mine was pressurizing me to such an extent that I better attend the session and be done with that. I did attend the introductory session with all the good intention, but somehow my schedule did not permit to attend the session. Subsequently my friend kept on pestering that I attend the session. And I did oblige my friend by attending one more session. This is where I had some unpleasant experience. I was sitting at the back of the room and my friend was sitting at the front. After a few minutes one gentleman came and sat besides me. The program continued and many participants started eulogizing how great that program was. They kept on harping one word called TRANSFORMATION. Not sure what that transformation meant by. My friend, he is in the same company, doing same job and at remaining in the same position despite finishing so many levels. Then came the break and as usual they asked us to sign up. I was sitting tight. This is when the gentleman sitting besides me started questioning me (did not even have the courtesy to even introduce himself) as to why I am not enrolling. I gave back my two cents and just walked away from him. Then I caught up with my friend and as I was speaking a few more people who had already finished the course started talking to me and told how it has TRANSFORMED their life. Then I started probing them as to where they are from, what they were doing before, now and will do later. As they started speaking I got to know that they were where they are even after attending the program. Then they started coaxing me to join the program. This is when I decided that something is not good with this program. I personally feel it is a multi-level marketing. And the participants are under deep pressure to bring in at least 3 more participants. If they don’t oblige they are shamed very badly. To escape from that shaming it is in all probability that the participants try to enroll more people.

    Subsequently I spoke to many people who either attended the program or who just attended the introductory session. The feedback was pathetic. This is when I decided I should call it quits. Later on I communicated to my friend this program does not suit me. It ended there.

  5. RT 04. Mar, 2015 at 11:57 pm #

    Landmark is not a cult or scam. They do provide a lot of value. And also a whole lot of bullshit too. They literally force you to call friends and family and basically everyone on your contact list to enroll. If you do not, they call you uncoachable and a whole other bunch of names. Which I think is really mean. Just because you don’t want to do their marketing for them you are doomed, according to them.

    It’s basically cashing in on the fact that people today don’t have a lot of common sense. It’s basically 3 days of drilling common sense into you. Things like you can’t control what happens to you but rather control your reaction to it. Don’t sweat the small stuff. My grandmother used to yell these things at me all the time. How they work, is basically get one family member to attend and that family member emotionally blackmails the rest of the family. This is what happened to me. Honestly, I was literally forced to do it. Almost strained my marriage but thanks to other family members support, we were ok. So please be warned. Till today I know the person who dragged me into this is still under their influence, you can’t imagine what a strain that it.

    The atmosphere in the landmark session is horrible. They start at 9, but tell you to be there by 8:15. What you do from 8:15 to 9, NOTHING. Just waste time. They say you can meet the other people attending. Trust me, you would rather not. It is 3 days of utter torture. You get breaks for meals, but are given assignments to do during that time. So remember one thing, you can forget eating for all the 3 days.

    One tip for anyone planning to attend landmark. Get a different, temporary SIM card when enrolling. Because even if you are done with landmark, they are never done with you. Today, more than a year after attending the Forum, I still get calls from them. Once you think you have attained all you want, discard the SIM. End of story.

  6. Sewak Nautiyal 19. Mar, 2015 at 6:43 am #

    Hello friend, please please please don’t do this course. I had joined the forum, advance & then SELP. They forced me to bring in other members. I brought my wife Mrs Preeti, we had perfect married life for 17 years and she joined Forum in July 2013, advance course in Sep 2013 and SELP in the last week of Sep 2013. She was too simple and emotional too. Landmark SELP leader forced her to do extraordinary work in life. She decided to collect funds for orphanages, where she failed. Due to fear of failure she committed suicide on 23rd Oct 2013. My request to people, please don’t do this course. Otherwise your family may get destroyed like mine.

    Sewak Nautiyal

    Ajith: I cannot verify the authenticity of any comment or commenter. However, I am approving all comments (except very long ones, spam and unhealthy hate comments) that appear to be genuine.

    • pooja 13. Apr, 2015 at 10:45 pm #

      Awesome way to fool people. Weak hearted people get into their trap. F off

      • Jayakumar 09. Aug, 2015 at 2:19 pm #

        Well Said. Can they be procecuted?

  7. amey 13. Apr, 2015 at 3:01 pm #

    Thanx guys… this blog is really helpful! my coleague forced me to join this course, which i denied after one hour introduction till i get roper infi about the course. I asked her what exactly happens there …like hynotism or meditation etc. As ajit said i saw people having guilts a bad son, bad mother, bad person etc who were reciting their experiences.
    I don’t have guilt about my life or my doings… only thing is m suffering from anxiety and panic attack …blood pressure related problems and really don’t want to take psychological drugs !hence i was wondering about join this course but, i think it’s not useful for ne! The way those voluvolunteers came to me with credit card swapping machines i felt i m into another network marketing cmscam…and i strictly told that person “sorry man my ‘satsatvivekbuddhi’ inner intelligence is still working and need to explore about this more then only i will enroll with my own time.”

    My colleague got benepmfitted though. She used to think herself a gr8 person always talking ill about her v good family members… always cribing abt her life which was full of nice outings vacations …gr8 familylife. Having a big new farmhouse was hurting herworldtour plans.
    Basically she was always somewhere else when she was in present and that made her unhappy. After forum she told me that she realised there she found a small soft hearted person within herself… she had guilt to her family members that passed n now she seem enjoying her new buikt farmfarmhouse other than just for partying!

    Thanx guys for reading and the blog with nice comments!!

  8. Krishnaswamy 16. Apr, 2015 at 11:07 am #

    Thanks for the valuable reviews. One of my wife’s friend forced several times to attend introductory session. But somehow we avoided based on our earlier experience with MLM marketing.
    I believe learning yoga and meditation from a good teacher and reading few good self help books,listening to good motivational speeches and music regularly are good enough to lead a happy life.

    • Ramanna 20. May, 2015 at 5:50 pm #

      I did the landmark forum April last year. And ever since then, my commitment to yoga and Geetha has been solid.

      It certainly provided me an access to do what I liked the most. So, its not LM Vs Yoga. My coach is a senior yoga practitioner.

      You can excel in whatever you want to. LM is pretty value-neutral in that sense. My friend, an atheist, allowed/helped/supported his mom to lead an orthodox life after forum. He is still a rationalist. And they are so happy! :)

  9. zohra 19. Apr, 2015 at 3:15 pm #

    thnks alot for ur review.i had never heard of landmark forum but a friend told me how her husband n inlaws have done it and so she also did it. and it has apparently ‘transformed’ her since she had some issues with her husband since in a happier space nnow. so she has been pestering me to do it.since I had no clue abt this program and wht it offers, I searched online and came across ur review and thank u very much for the detailed description. its really not for me either..especially considering how expensive it is also and seems like just basic logic and common sense tht we refuse to apply in our daily lives is forced upon the participants and then ur made to feel ‘transformed’.

  10. Satish 10. May, 2015 at 1:44 pm #

    Its totally waste of money, only for the weak hearted people, those who have some guilt to be expressed in a safe place so that they can Feel great & got rid of burden, I left the course at the end of second day as I felt its a kind of systematic marketing strategy n making the participant to feel low then assuring him that you will be power full n free of fear after 3 rd day, but in the course most of the time they utter about enrolling other persons for the course, friends its all waste if you are perfect n no guilt to be admitted, forget about landmark Forum its the absolute waste of money n three days of stress from morning 9 to 11night. Sincere request invest your money on your HEALTH not in LF.

  11. nemo_cool 11. May, 2015 at 2:52 pm #

    Well I also left the program after the second day. The forum leader was giving gyaan on how not to cheat or be at fault and have a clear conscience. Well this guy himself had a extra marital affair long after doing the fourm !! So i ask where is your learnings…is this not effective ??
    And yes..the way they market this is – when they ask you to call someone to confess, then the introduction of the phone call should be ‘I am attending a program called Landmark Fourm’…and then you share your guilt or complain etc etc. Its totally a crap thing and they show and a BIG NO for any1 to attend.

  12. ketan chheda 18. May, 2015 at 2:16 pm #

    hi friends
    Today i got a call from my relative to attend LF DEMO FOR 3 HOURS 3 TO 6 PM.After the demo i have to register my self for cource by paying rs16000k [discount rs3500] and so on. Then i thought to do some home work before after searching on net i got ur blog .After reading ur review and comments i was suprised to know about marketing technic and brain wash ideas.This blog is very helpfull for me. thanks a lot
    “sorry man my ‘satsatvivekbuddhi’ inner intelligence is still working and need to explore about this more then only i will enroll with my own time.”

    if you are perfect n no guilt to be admitted, forget about landmark Forum its the absolute waste of money n three days of stress from morning 9 to 11night. Sincere request invest your money on your HEALTH not in LF.

    I believe learning yoga and meditation from a good teacher and reading few good self help books,listening to good motivational speeches and music regularly are good enough to lead a happy life.

  13. Pradeep 20. May, 2015 at 12:10 pm #

    Dear Ajit,

    I attended their Tuesday evening session yesterday. I didn’t enroll as I had my apprehensions about the way whole thing was being conducted. Your review will surely help in taking informed decision. You left the course but you still haven’t said that this is entirely bad. I think whole review will surely help in deciding and taking the correct decision. Stay blessed and wish you success. Pradeep

  14. Hema 22. May, 2015 at 4:37 pm #

    Since its more than 15 yrs my husband Mahesh Shetty is doing this forum, as I read most of the comments is against ur landmark, I truly agree with them. My husband got sooo addicted to this forum that he ignored his business n family, the result is, today we r bankrupt plus family life doomed. Thanks to forum, my husband lies so much like a kid only to attend forum ignoring his wife n kids. Out of curiousity even I attended introductory thing, n trust me I really found it commercial n bullshit. Pls don’t do this at the cost of other people’s family life. Sometimes I do feel like publishing in newspaper so that I can save many families. Maybe in near future…..

    • Ramya 24. Nov, 2015 at 1:07 pm #

      Hi Hema
      My husband is a strong man who got into this crap 2 years back. He was introduced by a husband wife team from our daughter’s school. These idiots kept calling him till he gave in. The fights we have had because of Landmark were more than we ever had in 10 years of our marriage. Only because I kept fighting with him he stopped. I got all his family members involved and we got him out. Those people are real idiots. They are rude and unprofessional all in the name of trying to improve you. DON’T BELIEVE THEM.

      I have never seen such rude people as I have seen in Landmark all my life and I hope I have the good fortune never to.

      • Dhanasekaren 16. Dec, 2015 at 3:30 pm #

        I attended Dec 11th to 13th 2015 at Satya sai venue based on talks by a known contact who had done self leadership and leading a social project based on landmark’s motivation to do a stretch project.

        Now I regret it was waste of energy and time. Exact same things told by ajit were executed. I ended up paying another 16,000 for advanced course.

        The saving grace was I informed other friends and at end of #rd day experience of the push marketing by so called volunteers I dropped off the final day.

        For advanced course when I got in touch today for refund, the response of Ramesh from Landmark is – well read reverse of receipt 3RD LINE. NO refunds only if you can bring some one you can transfer or use this within a year. It is in the system he cannot take my request.

        The way it went, felt cheated and I can see right from the introduction session the scheme has been by putting 3 OR 4 people around you and tell you are not good at something, say that what you do not know you do not know. Use complex vocabulary and also use simplistic analogies and than extract by provocation some issue from participants and demean them.

        Please read and understand if this works for you. I came across several professionals in IT and practising doctors attend. May be it worked for them, but I felt it cannot produce breakthrough with an organization that does not stand for excellence and customer feedback.

  15. Whizkid 24. May, 2015 at 9:29 pm #

    Thanks Ajith and all other commenters who helped me with the details ! I was seaching for LF site considering to enroll, however, got this one first!!! Now,i know what to do !! Thanks for saving my bucks!

  16. subhash chandra 14. Jun, 2015 at 4:07 pm #

    This forum has been designed to confuse the educated people. Not a single solution came out even after attending for three days. Every time it is told to tell truth and everything will automatically be set right in your life. Really pathetic to have been part of this forum in anticipation to get better result as far as common issues are concerned.
    Avoid this forum in every possible way.

  17. Rajasekhar 22. Jun, 2015 at 4:53 pm #

    Is this really worthy !!!!!!!!!!! Kindly suggest

  18. Satish Varma 27. Jun, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    Ajith, I wish you had attended the 3rd day, if only to balance your assessment of the program. Actually, its on the 3rd day, at about 6pm, when the ‘transformation’happens. It is true that the coach can be offensive, but that is to shake us out of our stupor and also to demonstrate how much outside of ourselves out control centres are.
    Please remember that it is experiential learning, something quite different from the informative learning that we are used to.

  19. Khyati 19. Jul, 2015 at 11:22 am #

    Thanks ajith for writing this. It was a very helpful review. I attended their intro session yesterday and did not like the way the coach was trying to make people feel bad about their lives. At one point I found his drilling on someone too much to bear and even spoke out that he is not being reasonable. I literally felt like he was bullying us. Thank you for validating my thoughts by sharing your experience.

  20. Jayakumar 09. Aug, 2015 at 1:43 pm #

    I attended the session in Chennai and walked out at the begining for 3rd day as I did not want to deal with the Landmark jerks anymore. It’s total scam. People save your money and don’t attend this crap…

  21. Mohandas Satyam 26. Aug, 2015 at 8:21 pm #

    There are a couple of friends who attended this and have been buggering me to attend. I read thru the whole website and read reviews of people who attended. It is obviously another American scam that is targeted at all the aspirational people who are constantly comparing themselves with others. It smacks so much of commercialism that one really wonders if any real and useful input would be imparted! This is certainly not for people who are content with their place in lives. Life is intended to be varied and not designed that everyone has to emulate the so-called successful people. And there are enough examples of such so-called successful people suffering all thru their lives and many of them committing suicide! Where as, in ancient civilizations like India, there are umpteen examples of contented ordinary denizens who lead a rich and full iife without trying to achieve any greatness and trying to emulate the so-called successful people. This is truly an American virus and needs to be shunned totally, especially in ancient civilizations such as India!

  22. ANil 19. Sep, 2015 at 8:37 pm #

    I have done Forum, Advanced course,SELP and now going for Introduction leader Program. I feel it is best place to be surrender your self to the process without any question and see magic happens in life..I have got different enjoyment and happiness and understood how to be unstoppable in life..I have gone out of inhibitations and enjoy life powerfully which I could never ever do in my life till date in last 43 years.. I do assisting also which is free and hinrary and I do not get any money for the same…sharing some power experience of my life..anyone can approach me on 0091-9923001140 for more details..Thought to share my experience of full time assisting in Landmark in Production

    I was always surprised how come people have so much time in their for assisting in landmark more than a decade. And This was a question to me always unanswered as I cant accept it..till the time Chitra Challenged me to do assisting full time and play big game and if you do not enjoy then do not ever go to Landmark .

    I took a challenge and it was awesome. I experienced physical and emotional ( I call it Turture) till the time I crossed my elasticity limit of mental and Physical pain. Full of pain in Heel, Kamar and I don’t know what more…two days passed and on third day iw as thinking of resignation and same time I got connected to my self..Anil Are you so weak that you can not honour your work of FULL ASSISTING. That was turning point for me. I went and believe me from then till 18 days today passed and energy level so high, my 24 hours has become like 120 hours,i.e. efficiency multiplied multifold. I cant imagine this.

    Now again I took Challenge of assisting as CLS with Mahesh nambiar in last weekend. It was different from production,,something where I need to be present always for his likes, reminders, eating habbits and more ever listening to gain more and more…awesome caring experience…and full of Power and Love.

    I can only say that Forum, Advanced course , SELP remains in existence till the time we keep on sharing sharing,,but after some times we get bored of Sharing ..and sharing becomesa full time when I did assisting then if I don’t share then also I am in court with full of power and self expression.

    Guys I can only say that If you want to experience joy of service and super Energy then do full time assisting once in Production or CLS, believe me if you do not enjoy then never ever turn to landmark in future..I promise you it is so precious that we cant know unless we take it and do it..NOW I AM LIVING WITH LANDMARK DISTINCTION AFTER ASSISTING..NO GYAN ONLY IN COURT..cheers

  23. Suresh 27. Sep, 2015 at 11:25 am #

    Hi Ajith,

    I appreciate your details comments on Landmark. It’s your point of view. Your comments shows that you participated judging and evaluating instead of looking at your life out of the distinctions created by LF leader or people sharing. There is nothing wrong wherever you are. But that is what you doing throughout your life and you are blind to that and it’s impact.

    Look at what you filled in the LF information form that you want to accomplish in your life participating in LF. If you didn’t have any as such, then that’s a lie. If you have, then you should’ve participated 3.5 days fully. That’s your agreement. You need to pull the course to yourself. If still you didn’t get a value you shouldve catch of the LF leader collar for wasting your time and money.

    They don’t advertise. Buy still they are around the world and a 10.5 billion world largest traing and development company. Do you think anybody can survive for 40 years and produced extraordinary results.

    Forum is for everyone who wanted to take themselves to next level. It’s not for people with problems.

    What happened for you in 2 days of LF is “something happened in your life” and your comments are your story and you believe that is real. What’s how you live your life. Just apply this LF distinction in your life and tell me your breakthrough.

    Good luck

  24. Naveen 30. Sep, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

    Thanks Ajith for writing this. I am extremely happy to see such a detailed and an unbiased review (in my opinion) on Landmark forum.

    I attended complete day program sometime ago mainly because of one of my close friend. As per his suggestion, I spend few hours preparing few things which could help me in living an extra ordinary life (as per my friend’s advice) after completing the course. I would say I was committed and had taken most of the assignments sincerely thinking it would help to bring some positive results in my life. But my experience was completely disappointing.

    Though I don’t deny that few (most of them ladies who as usual had some problem with their in-laws) out of the big group felt it was useful, majority of the people who attended the forum found it utterly nonsense and stressful. Out of those 3 days, half of the time, the forum leader will be trying to promote the Landmark forum and trying to enroll the participant for the advanced level course (Cost around 30 K). Whenever some one ask some meaningful question, the leader will say you will get the distinctions on the last day at 4.00 pm. Every one was eagerly waiting for some miracle to happen on 4.00 pm. At 4.00 pm, he came like a joker and said nothing is going to happen for those who waiting till now, you are fools etc etc… Most of the people got angry and started asking questions, and he started shouting and talking some rubbish.

    Day evening was the day to bring your friends and families to forum. People brought their friends and families and their volunteers were running them with credit card readers to catch them on their net. They selected few ladies and allowed only them to share their feedback on the stage to catch more people whom the participants brought.

    I also faced the same kind of treatment from the forum leader for not bringing my friends and family for the last day. Last day was full of marketing, advertising and literally forcing the friend’s and families whom the participants brought there. The attitude of the Landmark forum leader towards the people who did not bring any one was pathetic. He called us non coachable, egoists, people does like to see others good .. what not.

    I would request any one who is planning to attended the landmark forum, not to waste your time and money for this. There are plenty of useful motivational materials available in internet and Youtube which would work better than landmark.

  25. John Zee 01. Oct, 2015 at 5:56 pm #

    I was referred to it by one of close friend and i was forcefully made to attend the introduction class, i found it really disgusting as they are drilling too much into personal life. My friend indeed payed the amount from his own account saying to me as gift to me. I was doing research regarding that and found your blog and it helped me lot for saving my 3 stressful days and i cancelled it saying some personal issues, but i got calls repeatedly from LF but somehow ignored those people.

  26. xe 04. Nov, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

    It reminds me of a story from a sleepy village where there is an ancient Hanuman Temple. One fine morning the priest while doing the daily Puja goes on to clean Lord Hanuman’s idol after the Abhishek. He is bitten by a scorpion that has found a safe place to hide inside Hanuan’s Naval. The priest almost shouts as the sting of the scorpion hurts. The people inside the temple come rushing to see what happened, they notice that the priest is holding his finger and shouting. The people ask as to what happened? The priest feels so embraced that he says he felt very cold after he inserted his finger in Hanuman’s Navel. All the people in the temple believe that this is a miracle and everyone starts to insert their fingers in the Navel of Hanuman. Everyone is bitten by the scorpion, and all the people say the same story that it feels cold when the finger is inserted in the Navel. And so on……

    I feel this is what exactly happens when people attend the LF and come out saying that their life has changed and they are new people altogether.

    I attended the free program last night and this was the story I heard from every one sitting besides me who had done the LF course. But none of them said what exactly has changed in them, none could correlate and give appropriate answers.

  27. Vish 04. Nov, 2015 at 1:15 pm #

    I paid 16500 yesterday to this course. Now, i am regretting as to why did i do this.. damn !! Should have looked at your blog first.. As usual, i was pressurized by my friend to join and looks like i have no choice now but to go through this crap in Dec..

    • rohit 17. Dec, 2015 at 3:50 pm #

      same here . i should have gone though this blog before ,. didnt come across this when i first researched . now i dread going there tomorrow , my wife is grilling me why did I waste this big amount :)

    • anil 17. Jan, 2017 at 1:49 pm #

      I attended the 4th day of the session as a guest of a family member. You are tricked into attending this session because you are close to that person and they used points that would make me feel guilty for not attending. In this session the guest is pressured to sign up for the 4 day course. The whole thing looked like a marketing gimmick with their volunteers strategically placed to push you to sign up. Add the fact that you are invited by someone close to you and a lot of people give emotional testimonies on and off the stage, I thought that this maybe a useful training and signed up.

      2 days later one of their volunteers telephoned me to provide some information. I stated that I wish to withdraw and want a refund but was politely told this is not possible. I haven’t used their services or product so is it legal for them to deny me a refund. This makes me believe LM are primarily a money making agency. One should attend to prove to all that he/she is indeed a fool.

  28. Jalesh Parekh 04. Nov, 2015 at 6:00 pm #

    Thanks Ajith for this article.
    Even after 2 years it is relevant.
    My friend who took me did not mention about the abuse but the behaviour was apparent in the introductory session itself where those people who did not register where shamed and forced to do so. And any suggestion given were stated wrong but repeated in different words as the correct approach. The marketing tool they apply Now (do not know if it was there before) is they hold the registration period inbetween so that people dont walk away afterwards.

  29. Antony 15. Nov, 2015 at 9:58 pm #

    What ever they redefine the term racket I found that in perfect dictionary sense these foolish people are running a racket. It uses all tantrums to destroy your brain. Even if got trapped into a meeting never respond to his provocations if you got provocated just leave that is best reply for this.I understood how people can lick boots for their easy self development.

  30. Hari 26. Nov, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

    The LF was recommended by a friend and i attended the whole of 1st day and 90 minutes of the next day (2nd day) (21st and 22nd Nov 2015) and then decided it was not for me. What you have expressed rings a bell with so many of us out here that ALL of it follows an exact pattern. GLOBALLY. Crampy chairs, uncomfortable hours, domination of staff, shouting, not listening, not allowing participants to speak up, rebuking, telling everyone that their life stinks and the works. Getting a refund was not important, i can focus my energies elsewhere and still make better money with that time. What i felt was a sea of negative energy in there, it was draining my free spirit. Its meant for people with low IQ, low self esteem, having abysmally low support system in life, loners, losers…….

    A hall packed with more than 160 people, people with different level of understanding, having different issues, diverse backgrounds, different age groups and a different goal – all subjected to one method – destructive emotional blackmailing.

    When i leave, i am forced not to leave, by 3 different people. One of them stands 3 inches from me and asks for reason. I put my hand on his shoulder and gently push him away saying that he is invading my personal space. He backs up and leaves There goes his commitment and integrity along with him. In their own words they are all a bunch of in-authentic losers. They are “dead” and will remain so till the time they recognise that there is beautiful life outside LF.

    The volunteer tells about a great life she has and is still doing this voluntary work for nothing. When i ask her to invent a possibility of doing something more meaningful or better – she just walks away.

    Hello, whom are you trying to fool, I’d say yourself.

    LF is not for people seeking higher knowledge (in any domain) – the leaders do not have it and cannot deliver. So, if you are doing good, you are better than 90% of the people on this planet. If you are doing great, thats even better. At this point, if you feel like doing LF, you are plain greedy as god has given us a lot already. Enjoy, your life is beautiful, don’t let people manipulate it.

  31. Rajneesh 01. Dec, 2015 at 4:14 pm #


    I have done the Forum program many years back .

    On money part : Yes , the cost for renting a big auditorium (Typically costs couple of lakhs a day), support the weekly follow ups, monthly intro session, travel and accomodation cost of leader, administration cost etc needs a lot of money

    On value : yes many gets benefitted , mainly the ones who wanted to start something / decide on something and were kind of stuck due to laziness or lack of confidence or the ones having lot of confusion/conflict in life

    Yes, follow up for other courses will be there . But was ok for me to politely reject it .


  32. Nancy 05. Jan, 2016 at 6:49 pm #

    I attended landmark and opinion it didn’t work for me and I found it a sheer waste of time. All they do is push you, insult you and do watever it takes to bring more enrolments from the very first day. They go pushing you to enroll for the next program and say you will benefit in the next program but wat happened to the money I paid for this program. You want to go thru the misery for yourself Enroll…they are great sweet talkers.

  33. Lorraine 11. Jan, 2016 at 9:48 pm #

    I have met a number of people who participated in LF and strongly recommended it – one of them “got in touch” with childhood abuse, quit his job, and (as he told me) “cried every day for a year”. He says LF made that “transformation possible”, as though being out of work and weeping uncontrollably every day for a year was an improvement over his past life, when he was a successful (but lonely) accountant.

    Another person I met has a consulting business focusing on helping people realize their dreams. Her business is constantly struggling, but rather than doing something about it, she keeps redefining what success means to her, and much of her life is suffering due to neglect.

    A third person I have known for nearly 10 years was involved in LF for about a decade, and they consider themself to have been specially trained by this program of ideology. They are a very nice person, but they are probably the most narcissistic and delusional person I have ever met, and they constantly repeat things that are clearly not true – as though repeating them will make them so. It’s very sad to see. So brainwashed, with all that jargon and self-satisfied insider-type of superiority… when their life is falling down around them, and they are failing terribly at a profession they have been active in for many, many years.

    My observation of LF graduates is that the program gives them the tools to be even more of what they are — if you are a weak and irresponsible person who seeks to justify your poor choices and transgressions, LF will give you the tools to justify your character weaknesses. If you are a strong-minded person who believes in living in the real world, LF will sharpen your acuity for seeing past the sham. The problem is, they prey upon the weak and vulnerable, promising “powerful” ways to come to terms with life, when all they are doing is indoctrinating you with specialized jargon and a way to do mental acrobatics to get yourself off the hook for the lousy things you do to yourself and others.

    Then again, for some it provides a valuable source of social interaction and a framework for thinking about life, so it can do some good. But buyer beware!

  34. Rajat 24. Feb, 2016 at 4:00 pm #

    Can someone give me Facebook link of this LF as I want to post my reviews .

  35. Ram 26. Mar, 2016 at 11:59 pm #

    I agree with Ajit, well said. it’s a carp course.
    i attended this course in March 2016 based on my close friend recommendation, and it was one of the worst moments in my life. Guy talking some shit as though he can change anyone lives.. its all f**king shit. I quit on second day as the whole concept was unbearable to listen.

    Never get into this. its a waste of money and a shit course. what i found was, these guys who do the teaching show themselves call as “coach” are very well trained in understanding weak minds in the group. They bring up this crying people to make as though they are solving everyones life problem.. its all gimmick.. never get into this.

  36. mitesh shah 15. Apr, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    Guys, Make Life Simple. Work Hard. Earn More. Value others feelings. Try to keep family happy. Let go off things, not in your control. Feed Animals Daily or weekly. Don’t disturb & harm, people or animal. These are the best stress relive exercises, free of cost !! rest leave on God & Luck.Regards

    • Nishant Mishra 19. May, 2016 at 12:38 pm #

      That’s the best and to-the-point advice one can get in his/her life, Mitesh! Thanx for your wonderful comment…

    • Rachana Sanjeev Bhargaw 12. Sep, 2016 at 8:45 pm #

      Hi mitesh
      You have said it all! Its like all gyan packed in one sentence. The essence of leading a happy n successful life…

  37. Sunayana 18. Apr, 2016 at 3:00 pm #

    To all respected people here, what Landmark teaches is what action you are taking if you want something. So if you are so disappointed by this education then I recommend you take actions in accordance to your word. Your relationship with your word should be strongest. Else, come to the forum, do assignment and empower your relationship with your word.
    I did Landmark last year and ever since assosicated with this work. If people are not coachable, Landmark forum cannot be delivered. The success rate of Landmark is way higher than any other education or spiritual teaching in this world. It looks like this class of handful number of people belongs to the category who are not brave enough to confront what they did in life. Landmark moreover never let you get trap in the guilt which past imposes. It actually sets you free. It treats everybody equal and consider everyone Big People with Big Life. So if you are fighting for your smallness and looking good, then I am sorry, the forum is not for you.
    You cannot just generalize when more than 94% of the people has found effectiveness in dealing their life powerfully.
    Once again I recommend you to take actions in accordance with what you want. Instropect if you are doing so. Else you are always welcome in the forum, as we never relate people with what past teaches them.
    Also for any sexual harrasment of any kind, I recommend to bring the issue at Landmark office. I am very much sure that they will certainly take actions.
    People reading this blog, I request not to get carried away with such negative comments. And Mr. Ajit if you are so authentic, then I am sure you will also keep my post alive.

    • anil 17. Jan, 2017 at 2:05 pm #

      The LM coach, volunteers and speakers should repeat what you have written to whoever they are trying to enrol before and after they enrol. I dare them!

  38. Vrushali Patankar 19. May, 2016 at 3:32 pm #

    I was reading various comments on the blog. I have done Forum. It was my curiosity. Even I got pestered with the marketing strategies, the way each distinction is linked to getting more clients for Landmark Forum. I was stopped from being a coach as I was not convinced for arranging the sessions at my home and office. You may be absolutely unhappy with the persuasive ways and thats what even I am. But remember that is not the content of Landmark Forum. Landmark Forum and the courses involve deep learning about yourself, about various ways which are inhibiting you from becoming what you truly can become. Its is about possibility of a life which can give you immense satisfaction and freedom. SO if somebody is really trapped into going to forum, here is how you can benifit from the same:
    Go with very open mind. Do not get bothered with the way they talk, the words they use, the time they give for lunches and dineers, the marketing they do…just concentrate on “what ” they are saying. They are saying that life will be what YOU want to design out of it. No matter what the circumstances are – you are the creator and everything is possible. You can come out of each of the myth about you and about every person around you. All traumatic experiences that haunt you exist because you let them haunt you. If you can come out of all such crap in your mind, there will be so much of space – time and energy available for constructive work – creating powerful life…life one TRUELY wants.
    I know I am sounding bit dramatic but thats what forum is all about…..Check the content and believe in yourself……

    • Bharadwaj 26. May, 2016 at 3:53 am #

      Hi Vrushali Patankar and Sunayana

      Unfortunately you wanted a forum like this to know the known truths of life. I feel so surprised that people can’t digest somebody even staring at them but here is a way where participants pay money to be condemned and ridiculed for no fault. Do we have to pay for getting scolded for not observing the known and learnt truths of life. We hardly are comfortable at our own Parents hard words then how can we withstand others trash us.

      Read the holy epics, moral stories and biographies to grow up better. If this is such a wonderful cause then why only to people who can pay? Forum teaches morals but does it follow the same?

      I am yet to hear from somebody who has shined as a star, won million hearts, been iconic and historic to say that he got there because of Landmark.

      • Harekrishna 27. May, 2016 at 10:31 am #

        Ms sunayana try to understand what people are telling, the point is there is no completely objection of subject of landmark only money wise, not worth to pay 15k + and practice honesty authenticity and integrity, every thing is already exists in our culture and Upanishads…. Now appx 50k + is the charges to complete the full course of landmark approximately around 3&1/2 days with 10 seminars stretched for 3 months
        Same time requires for advance course and self expression course… Instead of spending approx… 1 year 50k+++ to learn to be honest to be authentic and integrity NOT WORTH..,.. MAM…. ALL OF US CAN GET THE SAME PRODUCT FOR CHEAPER PRICE, BE WITH TIME MONEY AND ENERGY. These lf courses are the theme of BHAGAVAT GITA, Notting else with a different package or with different style of presentation ,,, so … So called integrity honesty morlity can be given to all kind of different sects without taking 50k+ money. DEFINITELY NOT ONLY OFFERDABL BY ALL but all classes OF PEOPLE …..

        • Sunayana 03. Jun, 2016 at 3:20 pm #

          Dear Harekrishna,

          Do you think people who can free stuff really value? So many religious Guru’s and Spiritual organizations are offering free stuff.

          Free stuffs are needed by those people whom you feel weak, small, helpless.

          Something that a person earn, it is a natural tendency to value.

          What Landmark deliver to the people, the cost of the education is not even peanuts.

          When poor people in society can afford to buy alchohol, create misery, and many people take tension & pay heavy medical bills…then I feel people can still afford to pay the cost.

          Something must be kept at stake to gain something. No risk no gain. That’s the law.

          If you have other views, I respect it. Also if you feel that this education is worth and people would really get it if they get it free, may be you can start something to help people doing this education.

          I think it is important to wake up and really see how world is moving, how we are too much living in our own shell. We are too ignorant that we are not even present to our own losses, how insecure we are. Unless something happens to our own self or to our near & dear ones, we would happily sleep in this world.

          I feel people should be always open for knowledge. It always gives you many new opening.

          One more thing, if education should have been free. Why don’t you ask Private Institution to give free education to all? Why in ancient times there was a concept of Guru Dakshina?

          Money is an important aspect to run one’s life, organization. In Landmark, all the profit is invested in training & development to making it available to more people. Employees do not enjoy previledge of expensive perks and those people are capable enough to earn a lot of money outside. Many people gave up their lucrative business because what they get and give in Landmark is priceless.

          I hope you could consider my views and think about it.

      • Sunayana 03. Jun, 2016 at 3:08 pm #


        Thanks for your views. All what you said is certainly required in order to build the moral sense in the society. But do you really think people reading moral stories are actually living life of those moral characters. Are we all became Ram of this era? Ask yourself honestly if you yourself are a role model. If yes, I really acknowledge you. But then how having your being can be useful for someone, for eliminating the sorrows and worries from the society. And if you are also contributing your level best, I am really acknowleding you once again. It is not at all essential to do Landmark forum, if you are living a life powerfully. But what I feel is we all live a life where there’s is certainly a scope to take it to another level.

        We all human beings are struggling with certain aspects of our life. Landmark gave an access about how you can turn your intensions into reaility.

        Also Landmark never disclose name of people who contributed to the world. To me if my mom standing for many people and calling her students to live a life powerfully & contributing, I would consider her as a hero. Why to measure someone’s effectiveness only if that person is in news or did something really big at mass level? Even if we could transform’s one’s life & facilitate them to live a life powerfully, that’s indeed a iconic contribution.


  39. Glad i read this 14. Jun, 2016 at 5:31 pm #

    - pardon the grammar/punctuation below. –

    great post, still relevant. had almost decided to go out of curiosity, but not going after reading the comments here.

    there are similarities in the pedagogy of the landmark forum with that of extremists, fanatics, cults or indeed religion. these are proven to work over centuries with millions. like…
    – cannot question the leader or methods. ‘he’ always right. have ‘faith’…aka blind belief.
    – shame, bully, humiliate and punish the people who question the leader or the methods (one humiliation will silience a hundred). religion goes further and threatens eternal hell if you dont follow the ‘charter’
    – enrolling more people is a pre-requisite. there is no financial gain associated in enrolling people, only satisfaction that you are helping them see the light. having a moral belief that you are helping people is stronger than any financial gain
    – persistent follow-ups from the converts

    above is just an opinion, i have chosen to stay away.

  40. Saurabh 27. Jun, 2016 at 2:34 am #

    I agree with nearly everything written in this blog. Had it not been for their hardcore direct/indirect marketing tactics, I would say the course is helpful for some people. But I would never recommend it to anybody no matter how troubled his/ her life is.

    The instructor/ forum leader/ coach said he has shaped up his life in such a way that he doesnt care what anybody thinks about him. However, throughout the 3 days he kept on repeating “when I was in USA”, “when I taught to people in Spain”, etc. If I had Rs.1 for every time he mentioned leading in USA then I could have paid for my course with that money.

    The thing I hated the most was that we spent atleast 5-6 hours getting trained on how to recruit people. So basically in short you are paying them and recruiting for them. So many people came forward and requested to be coached on how shall I recruit my friend, colleague, family member, etc. The forum leader does exercises and mock conversations with you to tell you how you should recruit people for them. They call it creating difference or bringing transformation in peoples life. I felt like I am the only one in the room with a thought that first lets get ourselves transformed and then we will worry about others. But a look around the room showed me that I am not the only one, but definitely in extreme minority.
    We had a guy who flew from middle east just for this course. We had to clap for his efforts, obviously. He cant speak Hindi. Maybe they promised him that the course will be taught in English. However the course was a solid mix of hindi and english. That poor guy. I tried to catch him in the break and asked how is it going? He showed me a thumbs up sign. I guess even he had no words to say.
    The fourm leader cracked so many husband-wife jokes that it got annoying after Day 1. As me and around 40% participants were unmarried this is something he should have avoided all together. Its like cracking investment banker jokes in doctors conference.
    The first guy I met during the break seemed a nice young intelligent person. He came here only because his boss wouldn’t listed to his ideas. His sister forced him to come here. She said your boss will start listening to you. His case was reviewed and he was clearly told that if you want a solution then go to a counsellor or read a communications book. I am not here to give you solution, I am here to show you a path. And the path that he was shown was the same that a housewife with inlaws issues got shown. By the end of Day 3, he was convinced that he not only cant reach his boss but has problems with his dad, mom, sister and some ex-gf. Was he transformed or brainwashed? I dont think I will ever find out.

    I genuinely felt happy for one girl. She indeed seemed transformed. She had genuine spark while sharing her story with everyone. Thats the only girl who I genuinely felt got something out of the course. Otherwise we had about 80% people extremely happy and clapping through the whole second and third day trying to show their life is transformed.

    I can address any specific questions if anybody has.

  41. Amit 30. Jun, 2016 at 5:58 am #

    Attended one session because my friend insisted, persistently. She even had her husband and her in laws join it. What could gather from that 2 hr session was insightful to say the least. They attempt to break down the psyche of a person then build it up in their way. Money is what they are after. Did anyone think where all the money collected by having more followers goes? They don’t print books, they don’t have uniforms, advertise, and most of the times I heard the meetings are held in charitable places where even the rent is minimal. So who makes this money? Any ways, I digress. My relationship with my friend has not been the same ever since. I avoid her and she appears to be busy with some or the other meeting always. Good riddance to bad rubbish I say.

  42. Shri Vignesh 03. Jul, 2016 at 1:49 pm #

    Hi.I totally agree with the whole thing and you’re final verdict.I am a college student(2nd year) who attended as a guest after the main LF program was over as a friend of mine was a participant.They used the same marketing strategy as you said(convincing people other than the participants) and also brainwashing guests who weren’t interested(includes myself).Committee members(not sure but somehow related to LF) there tried to brainwashing me saying that I was meant to be successful,I would develop an awesome career by attending LF, and much more.And the worst part,a member and me exchanged our numbers as I was hoping that he won’t trouble me by calling me and start the regular brainwashing thing.I had to block his personal number and other landline numbers from which he called.It was told that these members were actually volunteers who had enrolled in this program and have different careers such as CA,doctor, etc. But I highly doubt if they actually volunteer or work under landmark.

  43. Afzal 08. Jul, 2016 at 11:37 am #

    Landmark is not for the weak hearted. It is a very rigorous training to deal with various situations in life and be successful at what you are doing and enjoy the game of life. It is more about understanding the design of life. It was one of the most life changing training programmes I have ever attended. I was participating in the on going seminars for a few years. I have seen major transformations in participants life. You will be able to deal with various emotional issues with ease. People who carry a big ego ( having low self esteem underneath) are the people who really have trouble being coachable. It is not for everyone but for those who are really committed for a major breakthrough in their life.

  44. Hariharan S 19. Jul, 2016 at 12:31 am #

    Hi All,

    I wanted to know if this Forum helps for professional improvement in Career and act as a channel for more Contacts and to get ideas on how to start own company.

    • Saurabh 20. Jul, 2016 at 6:02 pm #

      This is one size fits all program. It won’t address any specific problems. If you are afraid to take some step or regret something then this might help you to take a decision. Our mind works in several ways. Our thinking can be completely opposite to reality. In few situations I have found this to be true.
      You and only you know whats holding you back. If you are shy, afraid, think too much, very safe, then this course should help you.
      I was always afraid to ask for help and make out of ordinary requests. But I have started asking for help and favours and am amazed how easy everything is.
      Like I mentioned in my review above, had it not been for their hardcore marketing this course would be stellar.

  45. Nityanand 20. Jul, 2016 at 4:06 pm #

    I had seer doubts about the functional aspect of this forum. I am 45 Year Ex-serviceman. I have worked for various intelligence organisation. By education I am an MBA with software engineering. I have seen many color of life. Comments and experience shared by people above are truly appreciated.

    I don’t understand, how a person life can be transformed in 3 days. A person’s behavior depends on lot of external factor like family, school/college, workplace, neighbor etc. And all of them have some influence in one’s behavior. If at all LF changes my thought process, how will they save me from getting influence from above factor in future.

    In my view, if anyone can transform me or change my life is only me.. Only I can change my life, no external force can work for me.

    They are constantly following me to join, I am determined to give them big NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO…

    • MOHAN 16. Aug, 2016 at 6:19 pm #

      Dear Nityanand, I completely AGREE with your statement. If their Programs are so powerful , why cant they introduce in SCHOOLS with government approvals and make every child in the world SUCCESSFUL and POWERFUL.


      “if anyone can transform me or change my life is only me.. Only I can change my life, no external force can work for me”

  46. Ut 22. Jul, 2016 at 10:48 am #

    Sad you missed the 3rd , at the end 3rd in evening you will get experience the emptiness of life in a real way , you are part of whole the grand design of universe thats a worth living experience.
    It’s true all you said with regard to marketing , shouting and all and still 3rd day experience is unique , if you are open to life you will really enjoy that experience , tear of bliss will flow out of your eyes.

  47. Arvind 22. Jul, 2016 at 7:09 pm #

    Thanks Mr. Ajith for the detailed blog on this topic. Recently I started getting calls from my cousin about this forum. I couldn’t attend the introductory session due some other commitment and today I could see this blog. Otherwise I could have been the victim.

  48. Rohit Koshy 17. Aug, 2016 at 4:43 pm #


    Ajith has not painted the full picture of the landmark forum, given that he only attended two days.

    I did the program in 1998, while still at college. I can say that the program still has an impact on my life, the way I look at things, and how I deal with situations. Did my first startup a year after college, and the company is still around. In fact, we used to recommend the Landmark Forum to all our employees, and used some of the principles in our weekly all-hands meet. I last actively participated in 2006, but am still a big fan of the technology, which is now second nature to me.

    This link gives a different perspective on the program.

    The program is a bit different, and doesn’t always agree with our existing thinking, or way of being. But it is also very powerful – I have seen many people turn around their businesses, and other over achieve targets at the workplace.

    I went into the program with an open mind – there was nothing wrong with me. I would recommend that others do the same. It is a good opportunity for everyone.

    • Kartheek 20. Aug, 2016 at 1:55 pm #

      Is any one interested in joining lf course. I want to transfer my course for cheaper price.

  49. Hitesh 22. Aug, 2016 at 1:11 pm #

    hi, Interesting Article and some surprising comments. Yes I do agree with most of them NOW, as just attended a guest seminar. I did LF way back in ’92, when they were not very aggressive, yes there was something about getting invites, but then they were not as aggressive as what i experienced yesterday. Anyone who have done the Forum during that period of time , would get a shock of his life he just had a review now.

    Yes they are commercialized, The quality of Forum has definitely deteriorated.

    And God save those endless people , who are enrolled and cannot understand English and come in with a hope of experiencing a miracle , which his friend has promised !!!

  50. Darshan Kalia 21. Sep, 2016 at 8:31 pm #

    Attended landmark forum along with my wife at Delhi in September 2016 as we were enrolled for it by our son. We feel it was complete wastage of time, money and energy. Left the course midway on its third day as we realized that we were not getting any benefit and the forum leader was more interested in marketing his other courses and cleverly forcing the participants to motivate other persons to attend landmark forum. Forum leader apologized and offered to return forum fees to our son. If your life is going on smoothly then avoid it. We fully agree with the review written in minute true details by Ajithprasad.

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