To say that Bill Gothardís early influences were a recipe for disaster is somewhat of an understatement.  Each of these influences has contributed to catastrophic results in various local churches, denominations, and parachurch organizations.  Gothardís Institute in Basic Life Principles is just one example.  Whenever the elements of isolationism, manipulation, mysticism and authoritarianism come together, cult-like behavior is not far behind. 
    Yet another major theme in Gothardís masters thesis was that of meditating on Scripture.  He devoted a whole chapter to it.  Now, thereís nothing wrong with meditating on Scripture.  In fact, itís a good thing that all Christians should do. Where Gothard runs into trouble is in the inflated and inappropriate role he assigns to meditation.