"Psychic Viewpoint" August 19, 2010
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Joe Szimhart is an international Cult Information Consultant. His services include consultation, education, research and non-coercive intervention aimed at dealing with controversial, high-demand groups, cults, psychotherapies, or relationships that use undue influence and thought reform techniques.
Joe’s deep interest in the problem of harmful cults and group activity began in 1980, after ending his two-year devotion to a New Age sect called Church Universal and Triumphant. He then began helping persons with similar problems. He began to work professionally as an intervention specialist and exit counselor in 1986 on an international scale. He now also works as a crisis caseworker at a psychiatric emergency hospital, and as drug and alcohol therapist.
Joe also consults as an expert witness and appears in court on behalf of cult victims. Through intervention he has personally helped several hundreds of persons and families impacted by cult activity internationally. He also does non-profit volunteer work to inform communities, organizations and parents on the cult problem.
Joe has made numerous television and radio appearances and his work has been documented in several books, including Bounded Choice by Janja Lalich, Understanding the New Age by R. Chandler and Take Back Your Life by Tobias & Lalich. He is also regularly consulted by the national media. The 1994 NBC TV movie, Moment of Truth: A Mother’s Deception, about a middle-aged woman controlled by a psychiatrist’s cult, was based on his case work and script consultations. He has also consulted with CNN, Dateline, MTV, Court TV, and A&E TV for a 1997 special on "Prophecy".
Joe’s work has been featured in Newsweek, the London Telegraph Review, The New Mexican, Forbes, the Washington Post, the West Australian and many more print media publications. He has also delivered numerous lectures and papers on the cult problem before diverse groups and organizations, including Native American tribes, skeptics, police departments, churches, colleges and prep schools, youth departments, senior groups, business organizations, sociology classes and national Mensa gatherings.
He is also an accomplished artist with numerous exhibitions and commissions completed since 1970. Joe currently exhibits with Perkiomen Valley Artists Center. His educational background includes a BA degree from the University of Dayton and a certificate in painting from PA Academy of Fine Arts Joe also studied art history at the University of New Mexico and social psychology at Ursinus College, PA. Joe is married with three daughters and two granddaughters.
He continues to assist families with interventions and former cult members in recovery, including consultations via phone and Internet. For more information about cults and Joe’s work, visit his website at