Scientology a Cult?

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posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:39 AM
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What I Think I Know

I've never been a Scientologist, but over the past 10 years I have studied the Church and it's history just because it is an interesting topic. I've had the opportunity to talk with Scientologists before, and pestered them with endless questions about it. Both in and out of the church.

This is such a huge topic I decided to restrict my answer to your question about Scientology accepting different religions. That one's complicated enough.

Officially, Scientology accepts other religions with no problem. At the lower levels this is not even an issue and there are no incompatibilites in beliefs. At a certain point, there is a 'revelation' (a really interesting one) which sort of makes it hard to maintain both. At that point, the non-Scientology religion gets cast aside, if they are to proceed to higher levels. But at no point is anyone ever told that they can't practice another religion. It's more like they feel they don't need it anymore; they have the 'real truth'.

edited to add: if they consider it their religion; there are many people who use the tech's but do not consider it their religion.

[edit on 18-6-2005 by Duzey]




posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:56 AM
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Originally posted by anxietydisorder
The tech works, and I use it everyday, but it is not my religion.


Thanks for answering my questions.


I don't really doubt that most of the tech's do work. I've been given a lot of the reading, and it is amazing similar to the same kinds of things I do when meditating. Self-auditing, if you're ok with that sort of thing. My technique for 'exteriorizing' is exactly the same as the one given in the tech, and I had been doing that long before I was shown those writings. My meditation techniques work for me; so I'm sure the tech's work for you.

I've been told a few times that I am a 'natural clear', so maybe that's why my brain isn't mushy yet.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 03:04 AM
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The Suppressive Personality


From your link......
1. He or she speaks only in very broad generalities. "They say..." "Everybody thinks..." "Everyone knows..."

2. Such a person deals mainly in bad news, critical or hostile remarks, invalidation and general suppression.

3. The antisocial personality alters, to worsen, communication when he or she relays a message or news.

4. A characteristic, and one of the sad things about an antisocial personality, is that he does not respond to treatment or reform.

5. Surrounding such a personality we find cowed or ill associates or friends who, when not driven actually insane, are yet behaving in a crippled manner in life, failing, not succeeding.

6. The antisocial personality habitually selects the wrong target. If A is the obvious cause, the antisocial personality inevitably blames B or C or D.

7. The antisocial cannot finish a cycle of action. The antisocial becomes surrounded with incomplete projects.

8. Many antisocial persons will freely confess to the most alarming crimes when forced to do so, but will have no faintest sense of responsibility for them.

9. The antisocial personality supports only destructive groups and rages against and attacks any constructive or betterment group.

10. This type of personality approves only of destructive actions and fights against constructive or helpful actions or activities.

11. Helping others is an activity which drives the antisocial personality nearly berserk. Activities, however, which destroy in the name of help are closely supported.

12. The antisocial personality has a bad sense of property and conceives that the idea that anyone owns anything is a pretense, made up to fool people. Nothing is ever really owned.


Read your own link. Do you want a person like this in your life. I sure don't. But thankfully there are very few true SP's running around. SP has become a sort of fraise in Scientology that got overused to describe a lot of people that it should never have been applied to.
(my spelling for "fraise" was intentional: A defensive barrier of pointed inclined stakes or barbed wire.) A lot of poorly informed people want to take this Church down, and I don't understand the reason.

What have they ever done to you? I don't mean what you have heard from a friend, that happened to one of their sisters boyfriends cousins.
Has anyone on this board been personally harmed in any way by a member of the Church Of Scientology???????????
If so, how?


As far as a Scientologist going to see a shrink, no, that would not be an option.

[edit on 18-6-2005 by anxietydisorder]



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 04:21 AM
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Originally posted by anxietydisorder
SP has become a sort of fraise in Scientology that got overused to describe a lot of people that it should never have been applied to.


Right, that's kind of what I was trying to get at, and which is explained in my second link. To many Scientologists now, an SP is anyone who has taken a negative position against the church, or against an individual person's membership within it.



What have they ever done to you? I don't mean what you have heard from a friend, that happened to one of their sisters boyfriends cousins.
Has anyone on this board been personally harmed in any way by a member of the Church Of Scientology???????????


I never said I had been harmed by the church of Scientology, I merely stated that I know quite a bit about it because I helped my friend and his family find and contact their cousin, who lived with them before she disappeared.

Can you tell us more about the SeaOrg's clandestine operations? Their profiles on enemies of the church, as well as their investigative capabilities and covert operations, have been compared to those of the FBI and CIA. The church of Scientology has spied on, infiltrated and supposedly sabotaged operations of many of its enemies, including psychologists and anti-Scientology/ anti-cult proponents. Have church members been punished for refusing to take part in such operations?

LRH's "fair game" policy stated that a SP or enemy of the church "May be deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed... A truly Suppressive Person or group has no rights of any kind and actions taken against them are not punishable."

Why does a "church" need to take such severe action against its detractors???



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 05:32 AM
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Why does a "church" need to take such severe action against its detractors???


It is there for a reason...........

It is the same policy that America takes to war with them. And any corporation worth it's salt also walks tall with this same policy in it's pocket.

You go stand in a public square in China and start espousing your political views and see if this policy isn't enforced.

Many large organizations have a very simular policy, written or not, so that it can survive and grow.

If you want to take on the Church Of Scientology in a legal battle, you better come to the fight with some very deep pockets and a fistfull of the best lawyers you can afford, because they will not back down.
They do keep VERY extensive files on just about anything that comes across the radar.
One Org. that was around when I was there was called INCOMM. It was very secretive, and controlled the Scientology computers and all the communications systems. They also have an inhouse police force called the GO (guardians office).
The Church isn't represented by a lawyer, they have many "legal teams".

This is a very capable group. But I sure wouldn't put them up in the class with the CIA & FBI. They just don't have the resources behind them to launch spy sats, and just see how far a Guardian Officer gets when they want to tap your phone. (not gonna happen).

But I will tell you, this thread will be read by a Scientologist. A report will be filed. I will be talked about within the Church. And they will try to find out who I am.

It is in their nature............ And you can't fault them for that.

They just want to survive and grow like all the others.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 11:03 AM
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Alright, I appreciate all of the links and information people have provided. I will even consider purchasing the book (maybe). Can someone go into a little more detail about the techs?

I know that 'Religion' may have another definition according to Webster's, however I am going to present my own definition of religion:

1 The belief in a higher power of some sort
2 An explanation for creation
3 A theory of the end of the world
4 A set of guidelines for living your life

It appears to me based on what I have read so far that Scientology merely addresses number 4, and as someone posted previously that you may leave other religion behind to achieve that 'next level.' So, while it may officially and legally be recognized as a religion, does it address the above factors 1, 2, and 3? And if so, how? IMO, it cannot be a religion if it merely states that "oh, whoever you were raised with as God/Yahweh/Allah/Buddha will do just fine for now, but you won't need them later." The general impression of the higher levels of scientology that I am getting is that of self-worship, self-deitization. Can somone touch on those aspects? I'm not really seeing explanations on the sites I've been offered links for, unless I'm looking in the wrong places


All of the major religions of the world can fit the above pattern I have described...Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Muslim, Jewish, etc. Can Scientology? Without 'borrowing' from the other religions? If not, IMO (again) it is not a religion. But that's just my personal definition and theory on what 'religion' is, so take it or leave it.


BTW, Thank you all for your posts, I think this has been a very good thread so far.


[edit on 6/18/2005 by SimonColynAdrian]



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 11:09 AM
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Opinion only: I think scientology is a form of a cult. I have seen quite a few interviews with "actors" that just seem to love it but after the interview with John Travolta a few years back I just had to shake my head in disbelief. I think it is nothing more than a tax hoax when this and other organizations go for the classification of "religion". It gets them out of a few tax laws and gives them a few extra perks.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:17 PM
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Originally posted by Memorialday1999
Opinion only: I think scientology is a form of a cult. I have seen quite a few interviews with "actors" that just seem to love it but after the interview with John Travolta a few years back I just had to shake my head in disbelief. I think it is nothing more than a tax hoax when this and other organizations go for the classification of "religion". It gets them out of a few tax laws and gives them a few extra perks.


You are correct, Scientology changed its status to a CHURCH in the 80s after the Feds took away their tax-exempt non-profit org status.

There was a popular statement made by L. Ron Hubbard, before he founded the Church of Scientology, in which he told another author that the easiest way to get rich was by making up your own religion. Hmmmm....



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:40 PM
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Personally, I don't know whether I would classify Scienotlogy as a religion, per se. But my reason is because they are very vaque on all the big questions other religions 'answer'. But I'll give you the rundown (no pun intended) of the spiritual aspects.

  1. Scientologists believe in a creator/God
  2. They believe in reincarnation
  3. They believe that they are a spiritual entity apart from the 'meat body'
  4. They believe that the tech has a direct effect on thier future and spiritual well-being

Where I think they are lacking on the religious aspect is any sort of explanation. The general idea is; there is a God/s, we just don't know much, if anything, about him/them. In principle, I can respect someone for saying "I don't know, therefore I am not going to offer an opinion". However, in my mind, those kind of answers are an integral part to any religion. That attitude also explains how they can claim to be compatible with other religions.

Now for the self-worship aspect. You ask some tough questions to answer, you know that? This won't be a perfect explanation, but I hope it helps you understand it a little better. Please note that what I am going to say is not what I believe, but from what I have been told by Scientologists and learned through study. Not first-hand, personal experience.

Scientologists believe that by being Scientologists and using the tech, they are freeing themselves of what holds humans back and therefore, they become closer to the true spirit/energy of God. They gain 'abilities' that the average meat puppet doesn't have, because of their special knowledge. The best way I can explain it is that they believe that God made us in his image, complete with his abilities. Due to a catastrophic event in the distant past, people on Earth have been inundated with 'negative energies' (called engrams) that keep us from realizing our true potential. By using the tech's they free themselves of these, and become more than us regular humans, but they don't see themselves as equals of God. They are all made of God-stuff and can do the same kind of things, but he's still the Big Boss because he started the neighbouhood.

That is why at the higher levels, Scientology becomes incompatible with a lot of religions. It would be very difficult to be a high-level Scientologist and maintain a devout belief in Christianity.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:49 PM
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Originally posted by anxietydisorder

Why does a "church" need to take such severe action against its detractors???

It is the same policy that America takes to war with them. And any corporation worth it's salt also walks tall with this same policy in it's pocket.

You go stand in a public square in China and start espousing your political views and see if this policy isn't enforced.

Many large organizations have a very simular policy, written or not, so that it can survive and grow.


Again, I don't understand why a CHURCH would need to defend itself in such an aggressive and pre-emptive way. We are not talking about protecting itself from terrorism or nuclear weapons, it is merely protecting itself from criticism! Why does a CHURCH need to do this? Is it because it wants to protect its money-making ability?

Scientology has always seemed to have a priority with money. Again, I don't see why a church would have this kind of a preoccupation.



But I will tell you, this thread will be read by a Scientologist. A report will be filed. I will be talked about within the Church. And they will try to find out who I am.

It is in their nature............ And you can't fault them for that.

They just want to survive and grow like all the others.


Churches survive and grow by having a strong message and teachings that attract people, not by threatening/suing its critics and detractors and having a "fair game" policy against anyone who may happen to stand in their way! LRH basically stated that Scientologists can and SHOULD do ANYTHING possible to stop them! WHY WHY WHY would a CHURCH need to do this?!?!?!?



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 02:56 PM
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About a dozen years ago, I met a guy at a beach who was into Scientology. We went out for a beer (He told me he "knew" this was going to happen as soon as he saw me). Maybe he had one-too-many, but he began to reveal some of the "truths" he learned about scientology.
As an initiate into the religion, you have to go through a "clearing" process, getting rid of old patterns and beliefs. There are layers - the longer you belong, the more "truths" you discover.
One of the things he supposedly learned is that, as human beings, we are born with 2 innate fears: the fear of falling, and the fear of loud noises.

The fear of falling is, apparently, because we are descended from clams. Seagulls used to pick us up and drop us! The proof of this descendancy is that we have hinged jaws and cry salty tears.

I never did find out why we are afraid of loud noises. Any theories?



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 03:33 PM
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Originally posted by hbear
The fear of falling is, apparently, because we are descended from clams. Seagulls used to pick us up and drop us! The proof of this descendancy is that we have hinged jaws and cry salty tears.


And this is why I stopped drinking alcohol.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 03:34 PM
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"Cult" (from the Latin word, "cultus," meaning "worship") is a term most often applied to "unpopular" religions--like dweeb, geek, and doosh-bag are words applied to unpopular teenagers in high school. And, frankly, that's about the intellectual level of such name-calling.

Christianity was considered a "cult" in the Roman Empire until Constantine figured out that he could profit politically and militarily from it--then it became "tolerated" and finally the "official religion" of the empire. (A status from which Christianity has never yet recovered.)

Some people will tell you that some religions are branded as "cults" because they are repressive. Obviously that's not true or the Southern Baptists, the Lutherans, Catholics, and Presbyterians, etc. would have been labeled cults YEARS ago. Nope. It's a popularity contest. Scientology is unpopular--and quite possibly deservedly so from what I understand, but probably no more so than many of the so-called Christian groups mentioned above. Scientology though is relatively new and unpopular; it is therefore labeled a cult.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by Enkel
Scientology though is relatively new and unpopular; it is therefore labeled a cult.


Actually Scientology is labeled a cult because it charges its members insane amounts of money for "salvation", it makes it VERY difficult for a member to leave, it punishes members for failing to meet recruiting expectations and other seemingly pointless things, and attempts to disconnect members from friends and family who are against the "church".

Oh yeah, it also uses known brainwashing techniques to create confusion in the mind of the member, whereby scientology can better control the members.

And it's hardly unpopular. With over 200,000 KNOWN members worldwide, it is larger than many established religions.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 04:08 PM
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Originally posted by anxietydisorderI was a Sea Org member for 5 years

Wow, thats impressive. Sea Org is the hard core of the scientology movement. Did you ever get put on 'discipline'? Forgive me if thats inappropriate. Are any members of the Sea Org non-paramilitary, or am I misunderstanding it.

You have left, but you are still active, you are one of those 'outside' scientologists then?


As far as a Scientologist going to see a shrink, no, that would not be an option.

My concern with scientology is that Hubbard came up with a sort of 'alertnative psychology', but what is to say that he should be listened to at all for that? And why can't scientologists use 'regular' shrinks, in coordination with 'the tech'?


SCA
I will even consider purchasing the book

Dianetics, as far as I gather in my limited understanding, is not, strictly, scientology. Dianetics was prior to scientology, but I also suspect that the two things are very similar.

The general impression of the higher levels of scientology that I am getting is that of self-worship, self-deitization.

I think another thing to consider about scientology, as a religion, is that its sort of a mystery religion. The people in it get more 'knowledge' as they move higher up within the organization. The people that start off in it seem to talk about it as something like a self help group, and one that has some pretty decent 'practices' to deal with stress, and the normal problems people have in life, and don't really get into the 'big metaphysics' behind it.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 04:13 PM
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Originally posted by hbearOne of the things he supposedly learned is that, as human beings, we are born with 2 innate fears: the fear of falling, and the fear of loud noises.

The fear of falling is, apparently, because we are descended from clams. Seagulls used to pick us up and drop us! The proof of this descendancy is that we have hinged jaws and cry salty tears.

This is where the 'alternative psychology' comes in. I think these 'innate' behaviours and reactions are called 'engrams' in scientology (and outside it also, thats simply what the word means). So scientology supposes that man has lots of patterns and practices that are, basically, engrams, whether 'acquired' thru evolution (sort of like instinct and fight or flight), or whether accquired in physical developement especially in the womb), and that these things can interfere with a person's 'true' potential, and that they can be 'cleared' away thru 'auditing', which in a sense is scientological psycho-analysis and psychiatry (tho obviously quite different). This is something lots of people generally agree about. But, agian, what made Hubbard so special? His basic theory, about engrams, is incorrect, and the auditing process doesn't get ride of instinctual and programmed behaviour either.



posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 08:28 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Originally posted by anxietydisorderI was a Sea Org member for 5 years

Wow, thats impressive. Sea Org is the hard core of the scientology movement. Did you ever get put on 'discipline'? Forgive me if thats inappropriate. Are any members of the Sea Org non-paramilitary, or am I misunderstanding it.

You have left, but you are still active, you are one of those 'outside' scientologists then?


As far as a Scientologist going to see a shrink, no, that would not be an option.

My concern with scientology is that Hubbard came up with a sort of 'alertnative psychology', but what is to say that he should be listened to at all for that? And why can't scientologists use 'regular' shrinks, in coordination with 'the tech.


People in the Sea Org. are not that different than walking into any large company. They work in offices, sit at computers, answer the phone etc.....
I don't see it as being "the hard core". I spent a lot of time on the road, and had a job to do. There was very little predictability with my job, I could get a page at 3:00 AM and I would be off to the airport 20 min. later either to pick someone up or to catch a flight myself because something needed to be done in another city. I was basically a "go to guy" that could go at any time, for almost any task, anywhere. I really enjoyed my job, and worked with some great people. And like any large organization there are secretaries, accountants, PR people, etc....... So I have to say that I never saw it as a type of paramilitary group (they don't have guns) and they fight their battles in court using the same laws that apply to every other citizen of the countries that they are in.

Did you ever get put on 'discipline'?

Sent, but not served. I've known people sent to the RPF. I don't think I would want to go through that program. I can't stand rice and beans, and I hate running and hard work.

You have left, but you are still active:

I have had no contact with the church for quite a few years now. However, I use some of the principles of Scientology in my life.

alertnative psychology:

Hubbard came up with a method of helping people. And it works for a lot of them. Part of that is not taking drugs. If the whole world turned to Scientology as it's religion, the sales of Prozac would drop off very fast.
A bad joke in Scientology would be to start a sentence with..... "My psychiatrist says....."



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 01:35 PM
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Originally posted by Duzey
You ask some tough questions to answer, you know that?


Thank You! I try, I really do, lol. Thank you for your responses, I think it really helped make some things click.


Originally posted by anxietydisorder Sent, but not served. I've known people sent to the RPF. I don't think I would want to go through that program. I can't stand rice and beans, and I hate running and hard work.


Can you go into some more detail on the RPF? It seems odd for a religion to have a 'penance bootcamp.' What types of misdeeds would cause you to be put on 'discipline' or sent to this RPF?

My psychiatrist said I should really look into Scientology for answers...
(just a joke)



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 01:45 PM
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Originally posted by anxietydisorder
People in the Sea Org. are not that different than walking into any large company.

Except of course for the paramilitary fleet of ships roving the ocean and the officers and uniforms.

So I have to say that I never saw it as a type of paramilitary group (they don't have guns)

Ah, ok, that clears up a bit. I had thought it was only the paramilitaries and the fleet. Thanks.


sca
It seems odd for a religion to have a 'penance bootcamp.'

Is it tho? Lots of religions do get into sacrifice and mortification of the flesh and the like. Heck, apparently the scientologists strain the body, but don't flagellate it or anything like that.


[edit on 20-6-2005 by Nygdan]



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 01:47 PM
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My freind is into scientology. I believe its a cult. Her boyfreind was in it. Then she joined it. Then they got married, had a kid. After about a year. She moved in the middle of the night and no one has seen them since. Its really sad bc her mom never gets to see her grand baby. It makes her really sad not seeing it grow up.





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