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Religion Black and White

Discussion in 'General Scientology Discussion' started by Queenmab321, Jul 31, 2013.

  1. Queenmab321

    Queenmab321 Patron Meritorious

    I don't believe the religious function is the cloaking. I believe Scientology is a religion passing itself off as science and, after the fact, mumming traditional religious practices for cynical purposes. I agree that it is an elaborate scam, but I don't think this fact excludes religion.
     
  2. Queenmab321

    Queenmab321 Patron Meritorious

    Why did you join staff? Did you not personally feel it was important to raise money for the organization? If not, why did you do it?
     
  3. HelluvaHoax!

    HelluvaHoax! Platinum Meritorious Sponsor with bells on

    :hysterical: :hysterical::hysterical:


    By that sordid logic, a Ponzi schemer who cruelly bankrupts innocent families out of their life's savings, yet "believes in" money, would also be practicing a "religion".

    Congratulations on your achievement of the state of WordClown. Yayyy!


    [​IMG]
     
  4. Student of Trinity

    Student of Trinity Silver Meritorious Patron

    The major world religions are easily recognizable as being examples of the same class of thing, which can be called 'religions'. This is partly because the big religions have taken things from each other over the centuries, so that they have gradually become similar in many ways. The world religions have also all spent long periods as major social infrastructure systems, supplying legal theory and political ideology, social services, education, and so on. These roles are fairly similar in most societies, and so the world religions have also independently converged onto similar patterns. Finally, the mere fact that the few big religions have been around so long has let them kind of stake out the turf regarding what it means to be a religion: to a large extent, the term 'religion' is just a catch-all that means 'something similar to one or more of Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, or Islam.'

    Beyond the major religions, though, it's a lot less clear to me what 'religion' even means. The term seems to be a bit like the term 'nation', which tries to cover entities like France and entities like Rwanda, even though one is a large industrialized state with a long history as a coherent cultural unit, and the other is a poor and recently defined territory, riven by tribalism. In a lot of ways it would make more sense to have one word for places like France, and a different word for places like Rwanda. And in most cases, whether or not you're in the France category is a much more important question than whether or not you're in the larger category that includes both France and Rwanda. Debating whether or not some particular territory is or is not a nation may be almost moot, when the important fact is that, whatever it is, it's a far cry from being anything like France.

    In the same way, I think, it's probably a largely moot point, whether or not Scientology is a religion. Whatever it is, it's a far cry from being anything like Islam. Once we get that straight, then just how much does it really matter, exactly what larger category Scientology can scrape its way into?
     
  5. Veda

    Veda Sponsor

    Excepts from a legal Declaration of Denise Brennan of May 2008:


    RELIGIOUS CLOAKING IN THE CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY

    7. Based on years of work in the senior most legal bodies of organized scientology as covered above I have dealt with directly or supervised the handling of hundreds of legal matters involving the organizations of scientology which directly or indirectly had to do with using religious cloaking...

    8. It was determined that the only way to handle many of the legal matters in front of us and still apply Hubbard’s policies that had to do with staff, ethics, sales of services, money, delivery of services and the like was to develop and use a religious cloaking saying scientology was a religion, its services religious, its staff members of religious orders and the like. I can state without doubt that the overwhelming main reason that organized scientology developed and pushed its religious cloaking was to avoid a myriad of real or potential legal problems that would exist by following Hubbard’s policies if it were not considered a religion. By developing this religious cloaking for organized scientology it was hoped to avoid legal requirements around the world that might otherwise have to be followed that would make it impossible to follow Hubbard’s policies. In developing the religious cloaking for organized scientology, the following were considered a few of the “benefits” so that Hubbard policies could be applied. There are countless examples but the below are listed simply as a few of them:

    (i) minimum wages would not have to be paid;

    (ii) staff could be sent to different parts of the world and be able to stay locally as religious workers;

    (iii) standard employee rights, such as those found in laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act, could be discarded and thus Hubbard policies involving such things as ethics conditions, the Rehabilitation Project Force and the like could be applied without outside interference;

    (iv) less scrutiny would be allowed on the controls of the funds of scientology and the intermingling of funds between the corporations and other legal fictions of organized scientology;

    (v) it was hoped that the treatment of public scientologists and the use of their funds would be considered outside the purview of governmental bodies;

    (vi) couching the demand for and flow of monies within organized scientology using “religious” terms (such as by saying that clear cut mandatory payments for services were “fixed donations” and were mandated by the scripture of “exchange”) was hoped to cut off attempts by governments and others to look into them further...


    11. Two of the things that organized scientology felt were of the most importance in order to avoid compliance with many laws that were contrary to Hubbard policy were the religious cloaking as covered above and a corporate restructuring to make it very difficult if not impossible for outsiders to ever get to the main assets of organized scientology and to ensure that the real leaders of organized scientology could be insulated from legal liability by hiding their real controls behind a myriad of corporate and other legal veils. It was considered both a defensive and offensive strategy to have such cloaking (religious and corporate) in place.

    Defensively it makes it very difficult for individuals or even governments to force legal compliance of the many types of laws as covered above. It also makes it almost impossible to hold those that really control organized scientology responsible legally or to get to the financial assets of organized scientology spread out around the world. Offensively, it gives organized scientology a “safe base” from which to attack critics and/or anyone it feels is its enemy. Hiding behind religious cloaking and corporate veils it can act as a victim when people point out its crimes and injustices calling them “religious bigots” and even scaring governments, many of whom are not supposed to get involved with “religious matters”. By calling policies by Hubbard or Miscavige that are otherwise abusive or contrary to law “religious scripture” it was hoped to avoid legal scrutiny of same.

    12. Once religious cloaking was begun in earnest and many self serving documents were made and images created to reflect a religious image, it was considered vital to get “experts” to support the concept that organized scientology was in fact an organized religion., it’s policies “religious scripture”, etc. The entire intention behind the acquisition and use of such religious and legal scholars was to create and develop “evidence” to support the religious cloaking that could be used in courts and elsewhere where needed. While organized scientology today parades out various scholars that say they are “religious”, I can tell you that this scholar program was started in the Guardian’s Office and I worked on it as early as 1974. I worked on the obtainment of such scholars opinions personally and by supervising others to do same and I used such scholars opinions to obtain recognitions that organized scientology would not otherwise have obtained.

    13. At no point where any scholars briefed on either the real controls of organized scientology or the reasons why religious cloaking was developed. Instead they tended to be briefed using the religious cloaking materials developed and/or by speaking with pre qualified, briefed scientologists who were told what to tell the scholars. If scholars wrote less than glowing reports of scientology being religious in nature, their opinions were discarded. For those who would write glowing reports supporting scientology’s “religious nature”, those reports were kept for further use in legal and/or PR matters...


    17. In summation, religious cloaking was constantly pushed within organized scientology by Hubbard by its legal and PR departments and later by Miscavige to gain undeserved legal and PR advantages, to make more money, to use as a cover when abusing staff, public and even non scientologists, to hide behind when attacked by others and to use to discredit and attack others...



    It's probably not quite so ho-hum safely-academically-distant, hypothetical, and "moot" to a young woman who's suffered through several enforced abortions, and realizes that what she's experienced is protected as a religious practice.

    [​IMG]
    The ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion is on the right.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2013
  6. Alle G

    Alle G Patron with Honors

    I think a lot of bad blood here is caused by misunderstanding. Someone says religion, another says fraud. Both are right. Hubbard’s fraud is revelation for true believers. Hubbard’s lies is truth for his followers.

    People are spending years trying to communicate with disembodied spirits. Are these people abnormal or practicing religion? Because the purpose of this activity is purely religious – to become cause over matter, time, space etc. These people are not doing business or science. How much faith do they need to do it for years? However, for co$ it is business and a scam.
     
  7. Alle G

    Alle G Patron with Honors

    RE: Religion as ‘OSA’s propaganda line.’

    I am an outsider, I only can look from the outside.

    What I see is not what OSA is showing me. OSA wants me to see ‘Sunday services’, ‘volunteer ministers’ and clerical collars.


    What I see is engrams, volcanoes, whole track, Xenu, body thetans, obscene dog incident, trains on Venus, implant stations on Mars, Invader forces etc. OSA does not want me to see that. OSA hides it from me. I also see that people believed it.

    I also see a large group of people fanatically believing in Hubbard’s ethics, SP doctrine, KSW and the rest of this extremist nonsense, which is not religious in nature, but part of Hubbard’s parcel. I see irrational antics of Tom Cruise and Jenna Elfman protecting their beliefs. Part of the dogma is that it is not a religion, but truth discovered by Hubbard and based on scientific research.


    If one person holds such beliefs he will be considered delusional, when a large group of people holds such beliefs it is religion. Whether it is fake, crazy or cult is immaterial here. What is important that the beliefs are about immortal spirits, past lives, afterlife, origin of Universe, origin of man, purpose of life, that is beliefs are religious in nature. To become an OT is a spiritual (religious) goal. Co$ exploits spiritual aspirations of the followers to make money. So for co$ it is business and fraud.

    So when I call scientology a religion (pseudo-religion) I do it for totally different reasons than OSA. So under religious cloaking there is a thick layer of fake religion, which OSA is hiding. But this fake religion enjoys genuine faith from the followers.
     
  8. HelluvaHoax!

    HelluvaHoax! Platinum Meritorious Sponsor with bells on


    I see your point very clearly and respect what you are saying. But, there is a horribly unresolved aspect to it, perhaps the subject of another thread. . .

    If the fanatically bloodthirsty members of a criminal cult with quasi-religious trappings (e.g. Nazis, KKK or Al-Qaeda) truly believe their terrorist "scripture" to be of a divine nature, can anyone thereby honestly claim that they are members of a "religion"?

    Even more poignant is the question of whether their "religious" blind faith somehow absolves them of the unthinkable pain and suffering they inflict on innocent victims.

    At a certain point, Justice must properly turn a blind eye and deaf ear to murderers, rapists, terrorists and other predatory criminals' not guilty pleas, despite their claiming such despicable acts were mandated by a higher power such as God or Theta

    Ask yourself this question: Were Lisa McPherson's "ministers" (i.e. handlers) any less guilty of reckless manslaughter simply because they were "faithfully" following neatly typed red-on-white holy religious scripture from a tech volume--and by reason of the fact that prosecutorial incompetence/corruption allowed them to escape conviction/incarceration?
     
  9. La La Lou Lou

    La La Lou Lou Crusader

    I agree with you.

    But, on faith, Buddhism is not a faith, it is not about gods, but man. Scientology is less about man and more about bank accounts.

    It would be helpful for the 'church' for scientology to be counted as a church. But it's a sham religion, which DM sold to the IRS, who now are happy with the arrangement.
     
  10. Student of Trinity

    Student of Trinity Silver Meritorious Patron

    Absolutely. This was the point of my earlier post in this thread, though, that the abstract question of religious status is a different issue from religious status within US law. In the post immediately above, I was talking about whether an alien anthropologist would class Scientology as a religion, not whether American courts should do so.
     
  11. Veda

    Veda Sponsor

    You were never actually involved in Scientology?

    Really?

    Then what do you care?

    Reading your posts, you contradict yourself, and seem unable to grasp certain simple ideas, no matter how often they are presented.

    Queensmab does the much same thing.

    Meanwhile, people are supposed to be concerned with what you think.

    No offense, but why?

    This entire subject is more no more tangible to you that is a crossword puzzle in a newspaper.
     
  12. lost

    lost Patron with Honors

    It is not passing itself off as a science. It did that in the beginning and it failed. So much so that hubbard, who was all into survival, knew that his con hsd lost the science cloak and could be stopped for claiming scientific value it never had, and that included medical benefits it promised. In order to survive as a scammer, hubbard had to recloak his scam in a cloak which put him beyond reach of those who could shut him down. And so religious cloaking was adopted. Tax benefits were an extra advantage.

    It is quite simple.
     
  13. Gadfly

    Gadfly Crusader

    There are MANY places where Hubbard defines and describes his subject as a "technology". That word alone has FAR MORE connotations as "science" than it does as "religion".

    Admin Technology

    Ethics Tech

    Sales Tech

    First dynamic technology (auditing).

    The word "technology" along with the idea that Scientology contains various methods and techniques that always WORK when correctly applied, is also FAR MORE "scientific" sounding than "religious".

    KSW constantly uses the word "technology". How many times do you see the word "technology" mentioned in this short section of KSW?

    One: Having the correct technology.
    Two: Knowing the technology.
    Three: Knowing it is correct.
    Four: Teaching correctly the correct technology.
    Five: Applying the technology.
    Six: Seeing that the technology is correctly applied.
    Seven: Hammering out of existence incorrect technology.
    Eight: Knocking out incorrect applications. (of technology)
    Nine: Closing the door on any possibility of incorrect technology.
    Ten: Closing the door on incorrect application. (of technology)


    The word is in seven out of ten sentences. And in point 3, the word "it" refers to this "technology", and in the other two points the word "application" refers to "application of the technology". KSW is the rock upon which the Church of Scientology is built. All stems from THAT one policy - its most "sacred scripture". (it always cracks me up when I see the word Scientology mentioned in the same sentence as the word "scripture")

    Public and staff in Scientology are indoctrinated day after day that Scientology involves TECHNOLOGY. They use this word constantly. I can guarantee that if you could bug places where Scientologists talk freely, you would hear the word "technology" at least 500 times more than the word "religion".

    This is just another of many contradictions and cases where Scientology wants to have it BOTH WAYS. The talk of Scientology as a religion has little concern on INTERNAL lines and matters, and the idea has very little to do with what any adherent studies and practices. The talk about Scientology as religion exists primary on EXTERNAL lines, again, as we all can agree on, as a defense tactic and as a way to gain unfair commercial advantages.

    So, no LOST, you ARE "lost" on this one.

    Yes, as you say, Hubbard did re-frame his scam in a "cloak which put him beyond reach of those who could shut him down". That was the PR on EXTERNAL lines. But for those on the INSIDE, Scientology is ALL about "technology" - which means "science" in just about every interpretation possible.

    Scientology is a work of art in terms of being what it needs to be for any person or public - so as to get what it wants. It will change into whatever it needs to appear as (like a chameleon) TO WIN. It appears as a study based on careful research with a wide range of workable technologies to the participants who accept and believe it. And, it appears as a religion to those on the outside who have the power to grant in various legal loopholes. Hubbard is very clear that one presents DIFFERENT MESSAGES to DIFFERENT PUBLICS, depending on the situations and needs of the group. These messages can be, and often are, quite contradictory. Thus, "Scientology is a science", or "Scientology is a religion".

    Just as with so much of Scientology, this word "technology" is a BUTTON. It involves the realm of slogans and catch-phrases that are designed to bypass rational thought and hit straight on an emotional response level.

    It IS passing itself off as "science" to those IN the cult. If you ask just about ANY Scientologist what Scientology is and involves, they will say, "a series of technologies that when applied can better conditions".

    From Wikipedia:

    "Technology (from Greek τέχνη, techne, "art, skill, cunning of hand"; and -λογία, -logia[1]) is the making, modification, usage, and knowledge of tools, machines, techniques, crafts, systems, and methods of organization, in order to solve a problem, improve a preexisting solution to a problem, achieve a goal, handle an applied input/output relation or perform a specific function."

    In fact, Scientology satisfies that definition in many ways. For example, there is "PR Tech". It involves various methods to solve a problem or achieve a goal. Granted, it often involves lying and trickery as PART of that "tech", but hey, sometimes it WORKS! Just because something involves a technology does not mean that it is decent or moral. The SS used various "technologies" to gas the Jews. It WAS "scientific" and very concerned with "economy", BUT also, it was evil and horrible. The same is true in some regards with Scientology.

    PR Tech is used on everybody, both inside and outside of the cult. The Scientology public is PR'ed in various unique ways. The staff and Sea Org are PR'ed in various unique ways. Wogs are PR'ed in various unique way. And, so forth. The content of the PR Messages are often very different. Per Hubbard survey (and listing) tech, one finds "what reads", and then spits it back to the person or group. There is NEVER any concern for facts or truth - only with "what reads" as a button or item to the person or group.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2013
  14. lost

    lost Patron with Honors

    The outer protective cloak is religion. That is all i am talking about. When the cult has to defend itself it does so on the basis that it s a religion......religious persecution etc. It does not rush out and scream to the media that hubbards scientific technology is being attacked. i have argued myself that it is not a religion. The cloaking is religious though.
    The original cloaking was scientific with a dash of technology to make it a practical thing. That remains of course. A religious cloak was put over it and today we have references to parishoners, church (sunday) services people started wearing dog collars, some esmbers have used the word congregation and all the rest of that crap.
     
  15. Gadfly

    Gadfly Crusader

    I agree. Totally.

    I have sure NEVER used the word "congregation", at least not seriously, with regards to a bunch of Scientologists getting together (as for an event). To me, using that word is a complete JOKE, besides being entirely pretentious and disingenuous as regards Scientology. I would have broken out laughing if any of my Scientology friends had used the word "congregation" (or "parishioners" or "ecclesiastical") in any Scientology context back when I was in. As I saw the cloaking take hold, as you correctly mention, with minister's garb (priest mock-up), photo ops of Scientology members holding books with crosses on them, forcing all staff to do the Minister's Course, and staging the "Sunday Services", I quietly gagged and puked.

    :puke2:

    It was the same as when words such as "ecclesiastical", "sacred", and "scriptures" began popping up in books and especially promo back in the early 1980s. I would look at this nonsense and just shake my head. One thing always very much annoyed me about Scientology even when I was involved, and that was the endless posturing and PR about all sorts of things - this religious angle being just one (though a very key one for them).
     
  16. Churchill

    Churchill Gold Meritorious Patron

    I remember Sunday Services in the '70's would begin with the reading of the Creed, followed by the Code of Honor. Then a guest speaker, and some group processing. It was heavily promoted with flyers, and it provided a way for people who really had no money with which to buy services to feel connected to the subject. It was all for PR, and unfortunately, it probably worked, with the angelic, G.O. trained Ken Whitman bs-ing the media.

    Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
     
  17. Gadfly

    Gadfly Crusader

    I was looking through some of the books in my conspiracy library today, and I came across Horus Saves by Evan Arthur McCallum. Horus Saves is a wonderfully funny work on the motivations behind religious movements. It provides laughter on every page, but also sticks with historic FACT - this is an exceptional book with many layers of information contained between its covers!

    It is available in PDF form HERE.

    Here is an interesting quote that is very applicable to Scientology:

    "Most people believe what they want to believe regardless of facts".

    And while the above applies to many people everywhere, these below are very specific and involve the definite formula employed by religious invaders (conquest by religion).

    1. HOOK THE POPULACE! In order to gain entrance to the people's belief system there must be a demand for the concepts presented. Such a demand is created by hooking the populace of the Empire with the very attractive promise of giving them a far better life and a better death than the one they could normally expect.

    2. BRAIN WASH AND PLANT DESIRES DEEP IN THE SUBCONSCIOUS: Once the desired concepts of the better life or death are consciously accepted, the destructive philosophy is projected into the subconscious mind by trigger words, rituals, ceremonies, and prayers that implant a new moral and logic base. Trigger words, rituals, and ceremonies work on the association and repetition method of learning. Prayer uses the hypnosis method of implanting the concepts of the new philosophy in the subconscious.

    Once again, the formula has a "one-two" punch. First the conscious desire is generated, then the destructive elements are embedded in the religious followers on deep thought levels through mind impacting maneuvers.


    A very interesting discussion could ensue examine how Scientology functions to apply these ideas.

    Scientology is abundant with "trigger words" (and phrases), and here are just a few:

    1. SPs (suppressive persons)
    2. Clearing the planet.
    3. Salvaging this sector.
    4. Securing your eternity.
    5. Do what Ron would do.
    6. Ron is Mankind's best friend.
    7. Entheta
    8. Flourish & Prosper
    9. Ethical
    10. Technology
    11. Keeping Scientology Working
    12. No Verbal Data
    13. Find your misunderstood word

    Actually, a great deal of the Scientology nomenclature (made up words or unusual meanings for common words) functions as trigger words.

    In terms of rituals and ceremonies, any anthropologists could easily recognize these:

    1. Weekly graduation.
    2. Writing success stories
    3. Standing and sharing ones "wins"
    4. Flag graduation where they stand on stage and get their cute little plaques
    5. Disconnection
    6. Broadly published lower condition assignments
    7. Hard sell reg cycles
    8. Attest cycles
    9. D of P interviews
    10. Getting signatures for a Liability Formula
    11. Making amends
    12. Attending events
    13. Standing together, clapping and hip-hip-hooraying the "old man" (Hubbard)
    14. Chinese schooling

    Basically any institutionalized behavior by the group can be viewed as a ritual. As I tried to explain earlier in this thread, repetition is KEY to having ideas sink into the subconscious portion of the mind. This is actually a sort of hypnosis - by behavioral repetition. Scientology is overflowing with a great many very exactly-defined behaviors.

    Of course, the "far better life" is promised in many ways - flourish and prosper, make the able more able, get rid of inner factors that hold you back, etc. The "better death" involves all the ideas about a thetan, safeguarding your eternity, reversing the dwindling spiral, etc.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2013
  18. Queenmab321

    Queenmab321 Patron Meritorious

    Well, I wouldn't say that a "belief in money," by which I take you to mean common avarice, would qualify as religion. However, if one were to construct a Ponzi scheme that entailed the promotion of a complex set of beliefs on the part those one intended exploit, then that might. That set of beliefs would need to include the following:

    1. Existential matters, such as man’s sense of being; teleological matters, such as man’s purpose in life; and cosmological matters, such as man’s place in the universe.

    2. Metaphysical beliefs such as a belief that there is another dimension, place, mode, or temporality, and that these places are inhabited by spirits, souls, forces, deities, and other sorts of inchoate or intangible entities.

    3. A moral or ethical system that prescribes a particular manner of acting, or way of life, that is “moral” or “ethical.” In other words, these beliefs often describe certain acts in normative terms, such as “right and wrong,” “good and evil,” or “just and unjust.” The beliefs then proscribe those acts that are “wrong,” “evil,” or “unjust.” A moral or ethical belief structure also may create duties—duties often imposed by some higher power, force, or spirit—that require the believer to abnegate elemental self-interest.

    4. Beliefs that provide a telos, an overreaching array of beliefs that coalesce to provide the believer with answers to many, if not most, of the problems and concerns that confront humans. In other words, religious beliefs generally are not confined to one question or a single teaching.

    5. Other accoutrements of religion such as an infalible founder, authoritative writings, an organizational structure, and a mission to proselytize.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  19. Queenmab321

    Queenmab321 Patron Meritorious

    "O Voltaire! O humanity! O idiocy! There is something ticklish in "the truth," and in the SEARCH for the truth; and if man goes about it too humanely-'il ne cherche le vrai que pour faire le bien'*--I wager he finds nothing"!

    Fredrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil

    * he seeks the true only to do the good
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  20. I told you I was trouble

    I told you I was trouble Suspended animation


    :yes:

    Exactly, and we (staff) all knew we were bit players in a pantomime ... (pretending it was a religion) and when the 'theatre curtain' went down again it was straight back to 'normal' life which was far, far worse than the Sunday acting we were all ordered to attend, which was quite pleasant and relaxing if you let yourself pretend it was genuine.