Alfons Mucha - The Municipal House
Due to the recent and upcoming transits, I figure this might be helpful for some.
This works for people who are gaslighting others because they are emotionally triggered themself and thus try to deflect everything and make their own problem other people's problem.
Sometimes people gaslight and create drama for positive attention and confirmation, but with some of these people negative attention is even better than none at all. But you can play their dirty game against them and just get them to continuously embarass themself, ideally in front of others, by exploiting their weak spots without giving them any surface to attack. When they insult you, you can ignore their insults or say "oh maybe that's even true" in response to them trying to call you names. It will confuse them when you seem to agree to their insults and when they can't get to you, when they don't know what to make of you, and when you behave differently than the people they normally groom to exploit. You just act all nice, ignore the insults or laugh at them if they are funny, keep them engaged in the conversation, and when you have found an illogic, you throw it at them as a question "why is it that you say this and then that, doesn't that mean that XYZ?". You might ultimately get them to a point where you crack through their deflection defense. They will never admit anything and try to continue to gaslight you and if they fail, at some point they will block you. If it is a public drama, they will try to clean everything up and make it unseen for people who are yet to join, and go on as if nothing happened. You know that you cracked through their deflection defense mechanism when they either have an emotional overreaction that is absolutely out of proportion and blame you for the most nonsensical stuff, or when they stop to reply and go silent, and then soon thereafter start their image cleanup and start to hide the dirt under the carpet. That's when you know that they understood someting about themself. Embarassment and shame is one of the greatest teachers.
If you have one of them in real life, if they are violently aggressive, of course this is a situation to remove yourself from for safety reasons. But if they are just heavy manipulators, it's the most effective to just take nothing personal, find the weak spots, and then ask a question about it. It's best to not play their own game of accusation and get all carried away, but to just ask for the logic of it because there is no logic, so they can never win because they will never have a good answer to your question, so the only option they are left with is insults or blocking you. When they disappear from your life in a final explosion and avoid you, you know you have gotten them.
So basically, they feed off your emotional response. You just turn their own methods against them and stop giving them your emotional fuel by staying levelheaded, and instead you feed on their emotional response until you have cracked through their denial.
Practise makes perfect, and then it becomes fun, at least if you have a gate 39 like me.
Additional thoughts from discussing this post:
Sometimes people just need to get to a point that's low enough for them to not work any longer (including too much shame and feeling way too bad about oneself), which makes them susceptible to a healing crisis. Shame and embarrassment is the most mutative. To me it is the biggest teacher of all. When I did things that I then felt embarassed about, I certainly made sure to never do that again. That's a healthy 3rd line: you don't do the same mistake twice, there are enough other mistakes that you can make