My Experience of Online Trolls at Lighthouse International Group: From Fear to Courage

Updated: May 26


Cover image by Анна Рыжкова


Summary of this Article:

I am writing this testimonial because I feel that it is the right time for me to step up in my life and tell the truth. I believe also that we, as adults, have a social responsibility to protect children and young people and this is the reason why I have chosen to express my view of the facts.


In this testimonial, I will explain:

  • The accusation that victims are sucked into a sinister 'personal growth' programme with Lighthouse International Group.

  • The accusation that Lighthouse International Group isolates members from friends and family.

  • How I discovered the trolls' campaign against Lighthouse International Group.

  • The subtle line between a healthy and unhealthy person.

  • The non-sense accusations that people were allegedly pressured to give money without a written agreement.

  • My personal point of view on women.

  • What ‘standing up’ means for me.

  • The beauty of a healthy community.


Is it True That Victims are ‘Sucked Into Personal Development Programs’?

As a child, I developed a strong sense of insecurity, fear of not being enough, fear of uncertainty, and fear of being abandoned. This led me to live my life as a victim of situations. I actually went through an abusive relationship and I started to feel that my life was random without directions and fulfilment. I went through depression, I gained a lot of weight as a result and had a job which did not fit my aspirations. This brought me to look for a mentor, which then I found in Lighthouse in 2019. I became a member of one of the groups and was supported by Sukh Singh who eventually became my mentor.


At that time, I was holding my life/myself to some of the most common limiting beliefs we, as human beings, have. I was telling myself the story “I am not good enough for this, I do not have enough money, I am not strong enough and others hold me back.” Later on, my mentor introduced to me the idea of personal growth and I embraced this path because I was looking to find more meaning and purpose in my life. For those who do not know, personal growth or self-development requires making changes in four key areas of the human being; physical, mental, social/emotional and spiritual. I know that one of the accusations made by the Daily Mails sources is that, “victims are sucked into a sinister personal growth programme”. I want to make clear that I do not believe any of those words because I do not see myself as a victim but rather as a person able to make decisions on my own in line with what I want to achieve.


Rebirth Within my Family

One of my biggest achievements, since I have been mentored has been to see my relationship with my family, my mom, my father and my sister grow and to help them to overcome difficult moments. During my childhood and teens, I grew up with a sense of embarrassment and humiliation toward my family. Only recently, I have discovered that Sean Covey, one of the sons of Stephen Covey (author of ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’), felt the same. This helped me to realize that the way I saw my family depended on me only. My mentor has always encouraged me to build something better with my family, to face fears of being afraid to build a relationship with my sister, or fear of being afraid to ask my parents for some financial support to invest in my growth and development.


Does Lighthouse Really Isolate Members From their Families?

Mrs Kramarik, the mother of a very gifted young girl, Akiane, who has painted many pictures of what she believes are visions from Heaven, once said, “I think that God knows where he puts our children when he assigns them to a certain family.” I now believe that there is a strong reason why God put me in the family where I am, probably because I needed to bring joy and peace to and overcome difficult moments of when we lived together. I have stopped blaming my family for all the pain I have suffered in my life and I can’t wait for my morning priming ritual to thank God for having sent me to this family. Every day for the last six months, I also imagine what my family would have been like celebrating Christmas and my birthday which comes shortly before Christmas; so I just imagine a family with two newborns, Jesus and I. Can you imagine the level of happiness that could permeate the whole family? I know that one of the accusations made by the trolls is that Lighthouse International Group isolates partners/mentees from family. I know and want to make this clear that since I have been mentored my relationship with my family members has been expanding and growing healthy.


How I Discovered the Trolls' Campaign Against Lighthouse

One Saturday in October 2021, after a challenging session with my mentor, when he put me in front of one of my biggest fears at that time, building relationships, I discovered the trolls' campaign while I was searching for some quotes from Paul Waugh on the internet. Reading through all the comments about the “Indian variant”, the spiritual side of Lighthouse International Group and the money that Lighthouse International Group “stole” from these people was shocking for me. I did not believe any words that the trolls had written because I was reflecting on my own experiences at that time.


Could I Have Become a Troll?

In March 2021, for five months my mentor and I did not work together because I was not taking enough responsibility for my growth. I was not making any progress in transforming the little girl inside me into a true woman. I could have become a troll as well; blamed my mentor, and asked for a refund, couldn’t I? I did not like my mentor’s attitude and I wanted him to take responsibility for me. We even strongly disagreed about the situation several times. So yes, I could have become one of these online trolls but I did not do it. Do you know why? Because the moment my mentor left me to follow through, I realized that I was the only one responsible to build the life I want; other people and mentors can only guide me, but then it is my choice to decide what I really want to do with my life. I also conditioned my mind for a few months with something that my mentor told me during our last session. He said, “You, Letizia, have enough capability and are more than capable to get a new job or making this change in your life.” As to respond to some trolls, who have claimed that Lighthouse’s true intentions are about ‘money and power’, I do not believe or feel this is true.


The Power of a Win-Win Agreement

My mentorship sessions are meant to be one hour, but most of the time more than one hour. My mentor invests his time, money and effort in me and from my side, as a mentee; I invest time, money and effort. And here I want to make clear that as a woman, I have shifted my mindset from feeling like a victim of my life to be the creator of my life. Can you imagine how powerful this belief can be? There is no price I could pay for realizing this. One of the accusations that The Daily Mail has made is that “people were allegedly pressured to give money without a written agreement”. I personally have signed an agreement, both financial and emotional, with my mentor. It is a Win-Win agreement so both of us win (does the Editor of the Daily Mail know the meaning of this?) and is based on trust, which is the new form of currency. I also added a specific condition to this agreement: that the mentor’s role is to help me put me in the darkest parts of myself, because when I reach those parts there is where I grow the most as a human being. I feel really comfortable telling my mentor my “innermost secrets”, because when I touch those points, he helps me to see myself in another way and to grow. All successful people do, so I do not know why this seems something so strange for The Daily Mail. I also feel safe with my mentor because all the sessions are recorded, and stored but what The Daily Mail has not said is that all the recordings for each session, even if it is a short call 5 minutes long, are shared between the mentor and mentee.


The Most Dangerous Fear

This investment in myself through my mentor and Lighthouse has been the best investment I have ever made in my life. Of course, this path requires constant effort, taking responsibility and facing the fear of becoming a better version of ourselves. We fear this: we fear the idea of giving up the idea of ourselves we believe we are - our personal "brand". This is an identity that has been moulded by our parents, our siblings, our family and our society. We fear the idea of who we could become if we undress ourselves from the layers of egoism from our old identity and we dress up with a new identity made by courage, conscience, consciousness, independent will and freedom of choices. If we are true to ourselves to analyze the old identity and embrace the transformational and transactional processes required to forge a new identity, we definitely do grow. We do not only feel the fulfilment from this process but also we also become capable of doing something extraordinary for us and for people close to us. People do not want to look at this journey with genuine self-love and they quit because they find it requires intense effort and is difficult.


Never Forgetting Where I Come From

I see that Lighthouse International Group has given me a huge opportunity to really grow in my life, and make principle-centred choices as a person, but also as a woman. This is a personal response to the women who have been named in The Daily Mail article. To these women, I say, “Thanks” because they remind me of who I was before starting my mentorship: a woman who could not rise up, who could not express freely her opinion and question situations; a woman who was strictly in the role that society had given to her; a woman who could not even think of the idea of owning a business or having their own income. I have been thinking a lot about expressing this feeling about women and I believe that sometimes we, women, should have more courage to take the risk to jump into the unknown or difficult situations and to truly grow, to truly make a difference in this world, but not for us, rather, for the children we carry inside ourselves because they will then become new citizens of this world and can do better than us. Can an unhealthy, possessive, jealous and fearful woman be defined as a mom? Can an environmental consultant who “was left terrified and in tears after Mr Waugh’s two-hour call” be considered a woman? Can a primary school teacher who freely puts Paul Waugh’s children at risk by posting the location of their school online, be considered a woman? I do not think so!


Standing For Truth

When Paul Waugh started to reply on the YouTube Lighthouse channel to all the accusations of The Daily Mail, I felt entitled to say to my mentor that Lighthouse should have considered removing all the videos from the channel. I, my ego, and my old identity were in fear again. I feared that the trolls could attack me and the team at Lighthouse International Group. My mentor helped me to understand that Paul was actually giving a voice to the voiceless in our society. There are so many people in this world who are so scared to express their voice because they do not believe they have the inner strength or power to do this or because they believe they do not deserve that pain. There are also children and young teenagers who have been unfairly involved in this situation. Thanks to Lighthouse International Group and in particular Paul Waugh’s videos and James Mills’s article to inspire me to come out from my old beliefs, to stand and to be here writing this article because there is a huge need for truth. I am really happy with who I have become today, and the transformations I have been through to be able to write this article under my real name, Letizia De Sario. For a full explanation of the relationship between name and personality, please read “The case of Theodore” in The Road Less Travelled.


Connecting With the Right People

I know that during the first few years of my mentorship, I have been lazy and ego-selfish, avoided the hard work to build my life which ended with my mentor saying to me, “If you want to grow, you will but not from a victim place. We will not work together until you stand up.” And I am sooo grateful that he put me in that position. I really feel safe because I am held accountable in this community because my mentor always has encouraged me to express my voice, even when I was afraid, and to make choices that are right for me only. I also feel safe in this community because we have all embraced the Fruit of The Holy Spirit as a way of living and we are learning how to use them to create communities/projects that are meaningful and purposeful for other human beings; especially for children and young people. And I think that one of the strengths of Lighthouse International Group lies in the ability to support each other and to tell the truth when it is hard to accept… not as the trolls are trying to do by choosing the easy path of continuing to blame someone else for the failures they have in their lives. When we take the risk of objectively analyzing the reality as an opportunity to grow and upbuilding and progressively learn that is the best of what a true community can achieve.


In Conclusion

Paul Waugh once said “Who controls you? You and your past conditions!” Decide which side you want to be on. Do you want to stand for love, peace, joy, integrity and humility? Or do you want to stand for immorality, idolatry/witchcraft, impurity/debauchery, egocentrism, and narcissism?


A Personal Message to the Team at Lighthouse International Group

I want to leave you with this part of a poem. I got in touch with it last year when I was working on my own. I feel it expresses my feelings for all the team at Lighthouse International Group.


We are not now that strength which in old days

Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;

One equal temper of heroic hearts,

Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.


By Ulysses by Tennyson


If you want to listen to it, well I have done a lot of online research and the best interpreter of this part of the poem is the English actress, Judi Dench with a short introduction to the type of the new enemies we face in today’s lives. I believe it relates to who trolls are and how they behave.


Here is the video:


YouTube | Medium | LinkedIn | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest Paul Waugh on Twitter



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