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Ritual abuse is sexual abuse that occurs in a context linked to some symbols or fantasy that may or may not be linked to a known entity. The invocation of these symbols or activities is repeated over time using torture and brain washing to indoctrinate, terrify and harm children sexually, mentally and physically in order to make financial gain from ‘pornography’ (child sexual abuse images) and the sexual exploitation of children. The group may worship Satan or other deities. Although survivors speak of differing experiences, many elements are common:

  • elaborate rituals, “games” set ups and “ceremonies”;

  • systematic emotional, physical and sexual abuse;

  • being used in the production of images of child abuse (commonly called child pornography) and child sexual exploitation (commonly called child prostitution);

  • being forced to take drugs and alcohol;

  • being tortured almost to the point of death;

  • being forced to participate in the abuse of others.


Ritual abuse can involve cults or it can occurs within a single family setting, or even on an individual basis. There can be multiple perpetrators, multiple victims and the use of rituals which include severe sexual abuse, physical abuse and torture.


The most important element for the perpetrators is that all their activities are kept very secret and out of the public awareness. To that end they have developed prolonged abusive control techniques for every age group of children. Perpetrators use ‘mind control’ techniques such as systematic and brutal programming directed at every level of an individual’s awareness (physical, emotional, sexual, mental and spiritual) for the purpose of indoctrination and domination. The use of such techniques effectively terrifies and silences those within that group and so works as a deterrent to disclosure. The perpetrators justify their actions using a religious or political ideology when actually it is about the systematic abuse and exploitation of children and financial gain.



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