Reparative therapy is dangerous garbage, and promoters of such therapy are accordingly loons. But lunacy comes in degrees. Jerry Mungadze, ex-gay therapist, is definitely at the deep end of the spectrum (that doesn’t prevent him from being promoted by crazies that count as mainstream among the religious right, such as Joni Lamb). Mungadze claims that his ex-gay therapy techniques have literally changed the brain structure of his gay patients and made their brains more like those of straight people: “when the healing takes place those areas of the brain that were showing the homosexuality show heterosexuality … when I looked at them I couldn’t tell the difference between a heterosexual who never was homosexual and them, which means the brain is able to go back and fire the way it is supposed to be, which is an argument against the whole idea of someone was born that way.” He has yet to show us the data.
Mungadze, who has no background in anything related to neuroscience but in in Biblical Studies and counselor education, was of course not actually talking about actual brain scans. Indeed, Mungadze’s “evidence” of brain transformation relies on crayon drawings. Apparently, Mungadze lets his patients color in a map of the brain, which he then interprets: pink relates to femininity, red to anger and aggression, and so on. He can thus tell gay people apart from straights, and when they revert to heterosexuality, he can tell simply by how they color between the lines. (Note, by the way, that he has provided no data on any patterns regarding to how his
victims patients use colors either.) Calling it “pseudoscience” would almost be an insult to hardworking crackpots. Mungadze calls it a “natural MRI.”
At one point, he brought his “science” to Benny Hinn, explaining that “everything that I talk about is based on numbers, is based on studies, which is what you do when you’re a scientist,” before adding that “you can actually see demonization in people’s brains.” How? “There’s a certain color that I won’t mention that tells me if someone is demonized,” said Mungadze, before revealing that dark colors such as black, brown and gray are proof of demonic possession: “I can be in a room with people who are into the occult who are steeped in demonology, I may not know it just by sitting next to them but I let them do that and I can tell what spirit they have. People that come from the occult, people coming from witchcraft usually [choose] blacks and browns and grays.”
In 2014 a British TV show host went undercover for an appointment with Mundagze, with predictable results, such as Mungadze admitting to being colorblind and making elementary mistakes about anatomy. Mungadze was not happy about the exposure, saying that he didn’t care about it and considered suing.
Diagnosis: One is excused for suspecting that Mungadze himself knows that he’s full of shit, but he is still a loon. And a dangerous one: even if his influence is probably limited, he has the power to do genuine harm to people in difficult situations. A piece of vile garbage.