General Question

allen_o's avatar

Has your life personally been affected by scientology?

Asked by allen_o (1485points) May 5th, 2009 from iPhone
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

54 Answers

SeventhSense's avatar

I’ve enjoyed John Travolta(in PulpFiction) and his most lovely wife Kelly Preston (in or out of anything)....oh Kelly. <3

spresto's avatar

No. Are you interested in scientology?

allen_o's avatar

@spresto, interested in destroying it

spresto's avatar

@allen_o Why? If you don’t mind me asking.

oratio's avatar

@allen_o what is special about scientology? I mean to other religions? why are you bent on destroying specifically scientology?

Darwin's avatar

A friend of mine who was in great emotional pain got entangled with Scientology. As a means of rescuing him, several of us “joined” the church (but very carefully never signed anything) and got volunteer “jobs” there. I saw very clearly that the “church” is designed to prey on folks when they are at their weakest emotionally and get them legally ensnared so that they must give the church money in large amounts.

So my life was affected by Scientology, but not in a good way. We were eventually able to get our friend back before he signed anything.

And I have enjoyed movies in which some of the actors were Scientologists, but it was because of the script and the acting, not because of their beliefs that, sadly, are greatly mistaken.

A.E. Van Vogt and L. Ron Hubbard actually jointly devised Dianetics, which is the basis for Scientology, but Van Vogt was honest enough to leave it as an interesting way to calm one’s soul. Hubbard announced he wanted to found a church so he could get rich tax-free, and he did, which was a good thing for him because he was never as good a science fiction writer as Van Vogt was anyway.

Quite frankly, Scientology is a bunch of hooey started by a charlatan.

squirbel's avatar

No. No one who is of our [and I am making a blanket statement, because most double-digit millionaires and up are not on Fluther] socioeconomic standing is allowed to be a scientologist. None of us [again, broad] have been in contact with the… religion.

You can’t advance in the… reliigon… without paying hefty fees for the equipment and tests.

allen_o's avatar

Because it prays on young naive people, teaches them to disconnect from their loved ones, fills their heads with bulshit about alien souls and is now growing in britain. I don’t want that shit in my area

spresto's avatar

eh never mind. They will be around forever probably. Unless you plan on killing them all personally.

allen_o's avatar

@Darwin, well said man

Darwin's avatar

@squirbel – Actually you can advance without paying big bucks. You just sign legally binding promissory notes that are never called in unless you leave the church. And the church is perfectly happy to take you to court because they always win.

allen_o's avatar

@darwin- did they use an e-meter on you?

spresto's avatar

Oh wait, Yeah I had a run in with them once. I thought it was hilarious. Pathetic, but hilarious.

allen_o's avatar

@spresto all i’ve done is walk past the Manchester “church” and shout cult through the door

spresto's avatar

@allen_o I don’t necessarily agree with that tactic but if it makes you feel better. lol.

Judi's avatar

When I heard about the new legal troubles of Vince the Sham Wow guy I wondered if the Scientologists had anything to do with it.
edit: Story

allen_o's avatar

@spresto, it makes me feel great!

Lightlyseared's avatar

Only as far as accidently watching Battlefield Earth once. Now there’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back.

SeventhSense's avatar

Is there an abundance of poor people who came to this religion with nothing but are welcomed and comforted? If not, then why do they deserve tax free status?

allen_o's avatar

Well said

asmonet's avatar

It annoys me when it gets silly kinds of attention, but no more than most other religions.
You might want to ask this guy.

spresto's avatar

Yeah that guys a crab too.

Judi's avatar

Hey, I like Vince!

Darwin's avatar

@allen_o – Yes, once, but I conveniently kept forgetting to sign the paper that said I agreed to pay $2500 for the session if I left the church.

BookReader's avatar

…i compare it with dieting…i can see where it can be quite specific to an individual’s need(s) but not everyone’s…

…my experience with it was limited but profound in a balanced way…

RandomMrdan's avatar

Anyone who knowingly gives their money to a church that was founded by a science fiction novel writer deserves to have their money taken.

I hope one day I can see the church fully exposed and taken down. Does anyone have an update from that online group anonymous and their efforts to bring them down?

Also, I think the church is outlawed in some countries…like Germany (I think they frown upon things like this after the whole holocaust and what not).

asmonet's avatar

@RandomMrdan:

“Anyone who knowingly gives their money to a church that was founded by a science fiction novel writer deserves to have their money taken.”

I really don’t think that’s fair.

Darwin's avatar

@RandomMrdan – The trick that they use is that you don’t give them money as long as you belong to the church and appear to be a true believer (or unless you are a millionaire celebrity, and the church has a stringent policy about deliberately recruiting celebrities). However, to keep taking classes and having sessions you have to sign a paper that says you will pay for the class if you ever leave the church. The classes are very expensive but the paperwork is a valid contract under law. The church happily takes folks who leave the church to court and gets judgments in their favor.

And I am glad it is outlawed in some places – it is a form of reverse pyramid scheme that allowed Ron to live on a multi-million dollar yacht outside US territorial waters for many years.

RandomMrdan's avatar

@asmonet what isn’t fair?

spresto's avatar

Nobody has room to judge on any level.

SeventhSense's avatar

@asmonet
The Church of Scientology is notorious for their total legal assault on ex members. Yet it’s hard to feel sorry for Vince. He seems to be quite frivolous in his lawsuits as well-apparently looking for a payday. Oh and Vince Offer as of last February was arrested for assault of a prostitute…although his pitch is a classic she bit his tongue…literally. :)~

casheroo's avatar

@Judi Did you see what Vince did to that prostitute? Pretty messed up.

I was affected by Scientology, when I watched the episode of South Park referring to Scientology, and laughed my ass off.

spresto's avatar

I remember when they made me hold two metal cylinders and tried to brain scan analyze me. They failed miserably.

SeventhSense's avatar

@spresto
Do tell- elaborate please..

Darwin's avatar

@SeventhSense – Those metal cylinders are the “e-meter” which Scientology uses to dispel emotional blocks so that eventually you attain the status of OT Clear, and can thus return to the galactic center, where the heart of civilization is located.

You see, according to L. Ron, we are the descendants of those who were thrown out of civilization because we were disruptive, being artists, criminals and crazy people. Once we achieve Clear status we are no longer barred from the rest of civilization.

At least, that is how it was explained to me during my stint in the church.

spresto's avatar

@SeventhSense First they had me fill out an 80 question survey. Multiple choice of course. Then they gave me a personal interview with a trainee intern. They asked me all kinds of lame psych questions, and added all the data into a statistics software that basically showed me that I had a lot of potential and was not living to my fullest ability. Then they start suggestion books for me to buy and also hooked me to the metal cylinder machine saying that the little needle would jump when I had a significant thought. It always jumped I recall when I was having no thoughts or thinking how gay this was.

casheroo's avatar

@Darwin Wasn’t L. Ron the only one to receive a perfect score or something? What does it even mean though? Does it mean you die (like, here on our planet) but are finally accepted into the correct civilization??

arca's avatar

Just avoid religion in general.
The aliens and volcanoes, etc scientology beleives in is the same as the belief in god and christianity.

There’s no fact in any of it.

spresto's avatar

@SeventhSense The group of people I was hanging out with got nearly the exact same graph dimensions. Needless to say it was a complete waist of my time. One person in my group actually bought books. I rolled my eyes and proceeded to waltz out the door.

spresto's avatar

@arca OOOOOh. Angry sounding. Have you been burned by some religious douche.

SeventhSense's avatar

@Darwin
So maybe someone who called me part of the anti civilization was a member of the church? I thought it was odd at the time that they didn’t qualify their statement.

RandomMrdan's avatar

@arca I’m not religious in any way…but there is a clear difference between scientology and pretty much any mainstream religion out there.

Scientology was founded by a corrupt science fiction writer. Every time I think about the idea of a religion founded by such a person, I am just dumb founded that people actually join the church under that pre knowledge… or even stay after finding out who the finder is… just amazing. It’s sad actually, that people can be that weak minded.

Judi's avatar

@casheroo ; the conspiracy theorist in me wonders if it was all a set up by Scientology and they beat her up to make it look worse. I watch to much TV.

RandomMrdan's avatar

check this out. It was the first video I had seen that opened my eyes to scientology a bit… and I know it’s biased clearly, but a lot of the evidence supporting all these incidents are out there for people to see. Some messed up stuff.

-the music is a bit creepy though. (adds effect)

casheroo's avatar

@Judi He admitted she bit his tongue and he hit her to get her off of him. I guess it could have been a set up…I don’t know. They both got arrested though.

Qingu's avatar

I don’t see why Scientology is significantly worse than any other religion.

Yeah, it takes your money, but you’re also expected to support your church/synagogue.

Yeah, it brainwashes you, but so does every parent who brings their kid to a sermon about heaven and hell.

Yeah, they go after apostates and critics—so do Christians, Jews, and Muslims (especially Muslims!)

Yeah, it’s based on science-fiction BS, but I actually find the idea of galactic emperors and souls trapped in volcanoes a lot more believable than, for example, a Jewish zombie magician who is his own father dying as a sacrifice to himself to change the laws he says he hasn’t come to change because he wants to make it easier for us to avoid punishment from himself for the evil force imputed onto us by our clay-man ancestor, who ate a magic apple at the behest of a talking snake.

The only real difference is that Christianity has had 20 centuries to settle in and seem normal when it’s actually just as insane as the crap in Scientology.

Qingu's avatar

To answer the original Q, I did visit a Scientology church once and took an e-reader test. It was dishonest charlatanry, but it seemed to be something the woman administering the test believed in. Sort of like how Christians believe prayer works.

GAMBIT's avatar

The only way my life has been affected by Scientology is on occasion I will watch a John Travolta or Tom Cruise movie. Other than that I never think about it.

SeventhSense's avatar

@Qingu
Don’t look now but your prejudice is showing.
Jesus Christ- A well known teacher with a wide following who had a mesage of hope and comfort for downtrodden masses. The idea of a teacher of the law was a tradition that was well established. The teachings were and still are validated by the ideals which have been exemplified by such benevolent people as Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr to transform entire societies.

He abhorred any financial compensation, railed against the abuses of positions and power by the established religion of the day. He laid down his life for his followers. His message was in keeping with a tradition and had a foundation of thousands of years of prior writings.

He was humble enough to touch the hearts of the sick, outcasts, and dregs of society yet had the balls to speak out against the established hypocrisy of the Pharisee’s religion.

Contrast this with a Science Fiction writer who created a religion out of thin air to attract celebrities and avoid taxes. A money hungry capitalist whose followers pursue litigation against former members who speak out against it like mob loansharks.

Jesus contrarily not only did not hold vengeance but forgave those who nailed him to a cross.

The only similarities is that the two walked the earth as men

Qingu's avatar

@SeventhSense, I think you missed my point, which was not about the moral content of the religions’ teachings but rather the ridiculousness of their teachings. I mean, do you really believe that intergalactic space emperors are significantly more stupid than magic Jewish zombies and talking serpents and donkeys?

But if you want to compare morals, Jesus did say “I have not come to bring peace but the sword” and told his followers to abandon their families and “let the dead bury the dead.” If the gospels are to be believed, he routinely threatened unbelievers with afterlife torture. He also was clearly in league with Jewish zealots, who were basically the ancient Roman equivalent of terrorist religious extremists. And as far as I know, the scriptures of Scientology do not command slavery or genocide. In fact, the Bible—the God of which Jesus supposedly _is_—is the only religious text to actually command genocide, as far as I know.

So again, I fail to see how Christianity comes off looking any nicer than Scientology, your whitewashed hippie version of Jesus notwithstanding. I mean, do you really think Scientologists don’t have a similarly saintly conception of the great L. Ron Hubbard?

SeventhSense's avatar

@Qingu
Fish somewhere else or get a job at the NY Post.
I hear they like inflammatory rhetoric there.

mcbealer's avatar

only indirectly, here’s how:

I have a copy of Tom Cruise’s biography by Andrew Morton on audio, it’s the best $5.99
I have spent to date at Borders. I don’t know off-hand who the narrator is, but a 10 minute listen sends me off to a deep slumber. Nice.

asmonet's avatar

@RandomMrdan / @SeventhSense
I was not making a comment on Scientology, but rather the judgment against people who were lured in and manipulated, victims shouldn’t be blamed for anything. As for Vince, well… I don’t know why you directed most of that at me as I didn’t comment on his affairs, I just pointed him out. I think he’s ridiculous.

SeventhSense's avatar

@asmonet
I apologize. The link got me going. :)

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