Skeptics and Pseudo-Skeptics of Scientology

Discussion in 'Evaluating and Criticising Scientology' started by Alanzo, Aug 12, 2019.

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  1. TheOriginalBigBlue

    TheOriginalBigBlue Gold Meritorious Patron

    Yes, in order to minimize the cultishness of Scientology it is important to try to make a distinction between less fanatic Scientologists from more fanatic Scientologists. The problem with this is true unadulterated Scientology in Hubbard's own words defines the more fanatic Scientologists as being true pure Scientologists and the less fanatic as being off-purpose and dilettantes. It's the same with the Quran. A literal reading of the Quran just like Scientology supports that the more fanatic version is the correct version and so called moderate Muslims are practicing a watered down namby-pamby version. We may want to believe that the moderate Muslim is the correct version for the times but the Quran is still basically a military manual on the subjugation of non-Muslims. You are trying to reverse the reality to suit your intellectual argument. If you read KSW in light of OTO's "Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law" it can be interpreted as a rewriting of OTO's rule granting Hubbard total freedom to do as he wilt. Total amoralism is an occult ambition. Hubbard redefined morals for Scientologists in a way that he was Source and everyone else had to do his bidding - he achieved OTO's goal. You want to call that a sub-culture but we call it a cult. What is the worst abuse that you have personally witnessed that was committed while Hubbard was still alive and directly running things? If it wasn't very bad then we can expect you to have a romanticized impression of Scientology that let's you comfortably adhere and promote an intellectually dishonest narrative. I also came up through the Mission Network and with few exceptions it was relatively light and fun. A lot of friendships and romantic relationships were made there. I think that was the point. It was supposed to be the outer layer of the onion that got people into it and indoctrinated so when they experienced deeper layers of abuse they were committed and willing to rationalize what they saw. But for those of us who were deeper into the onion and saw how the abuse came directly from Hubbard it is naive for people who didn't to try to defend or minimize it. If Hubbard respected the Mission Network and it's less fanatical culture he wouldn't have had Miscavige and gang destroy it. You may want to rationalize that also like he was deceived and manipulated by Miscavige or didn't know what was going on but even if that was true it only shows how fallible he really was.

    So what you are really discussing here is not Scientology as a sub-culture of the larger culture but Scientologists who didn't witness abuse directly by Hubbard as a sub-culture of Scientology. Because you don't want your piece of the culture to be culty you need all of it to not be culty.

    BTW, I was also a student of TM and Buddhism when I seriously got into Scientology. That is part of the trap - Scientology has things that appeal to interests that you already have. It exploits seekers who are not disciplined in logic and offers something for everyone. It can handle any ruin. But you glossed over my main point that Hubbard and Scientology's beginnings are deeply rooted in actual cults and the occult yet you try to say it isn't a cult. We are expected to use a politically correct euphemism and somehow agree that this relationship isn't important. I find that to be intellectually dishonest.

    Initially people got involved because Dianetics claimed to understand the mechanics of the mind based on mental image pictures.

    Then it is Scientology and now the mental image pictures are energy impinging on spiritual beings.

    Then there are other spiritual beings from alien societies clinging to us and screwing up our mental image pictures with their own tormented pictures that are further messed up with drugs.

    So the progression goes from psychology to religion to demonology and Hubbard promised he had all the answers at each stage when in actuality it was all a circular trajectory back to the occult only with a moderne twist. One thing that was consistent through the religion and occult phases were the dungeons: windowless chain lockers, bilges, boiler rooms, cyclone fence cages, incinerator rooms and hot ant infested trailers out in the desert with bars on the windows - but still, we aren't supposed to associate any of that with cults.

    It's a minority religion.
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019 at 5:05 AM
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  2. Alanzo

    Alanzo Screeching Harpy

    First, what a great piece of writing, BigBlue.

    Excellent argument.

    The point above could be turned right around on you, too.

    "Because you want your piece of the culture to be culty, you need all of it to be culty."

    That is exactly my point about the hysterics of anti-Scientologists.

    Objectively, in the real world, all those abuses that you listed, the chain lockers, etc, are all Sea Org abuses. A very small fraction of Scientologists went into the Sea Org. Almost every single Scientologist I knew - especially out in the cornfields - avoided any SO member like the plague.

    If we go by percentages of Scientologist's experience, then the overwhelming majority of people who got themselves involved in Scientology NEVER DID THAT ABUSIVE SHIT TO EACH OTHER.


    That counts for something, right?

    Why does that not count for you?
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
  3. Clay Pigeon

    Clay Pigeon Gold Meritorious Patron

    Why thank you TOBB for some fairly rational and intelligent commentary...

    Scientology; to the analytical mind which thinks in differences and similarities, is much cultlike in many significant ways and yet it is not nearly so much a cult as were jimmy jones's People's Temple, Applewhite's Heaven's Gate or Rajneeshi's carrot people.

    Of course it gets cultier the deeper you go. I had a great time as public and a pretty good time on staff but already at CLIV level "the all Ron, only Ron" blinders were being slipped over the eyes...

    But it still has a wondrous non-culty aspect to it

    You can gain knowledge worth having
  4. Bill

    Bill Gold Meritorious Patron

    OK, Alanzo, calm down. Take a deep breath. No need for hysterics.

    Most Scientologists went along with disconnection: Friends, employees, even family. Most Scientologists went along with the abusive Ethics Orders. You think all that isn't abusive?

    Pretty much all staff members went along with the abusive ethics conditions, the RPF assignments, musical chairs, reassignments, etc. You are saying all that isn't abusive?

    Sea Org members witnessed, went along and even participated in massive amounts of abuse. Doesn't count?

    You can ignore the continual and pervasive abuse in Scientology and keep your eyes closed tightly, but that doesn't mean the abuse didn't happen.
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  5. TheOriginalBigBlue

    TheOriginalBigBlue Gold Meritorious Patron

    I don't think anyone is suggesting that Hubbard's strategy of making the lower levels more socially acceptable until people got further into the belly of the beast wasn't effective. That is one of the most scary things about Scientology - that it can make people do that. There are Scientologists who only experienced the outer layer of the onion and then there are those that experienced the outer and much deeper layers. Common sense would dictate that the people who went the deepest into the onion would be best able to comment on the overall nature of Scientology. But you seem to be arguing that the more experienced people who worked the closest with Hubbard and his communication lines have the least credibility to call it a cult. That's a self-defeating argument.

    The closer to Hubbard that you got the heavier the ethics were for the simple reason that there needed to be more control over the revelations of abuse. That things were nicer farther away makes perfect sense.

    I also think that it depends on what your definition of abuse is. If someone gives a million dollars to an organization that treated Lisa McPherson the way they did I'd suggest that they were contributing to abuse. Just because they didn't personally deprive her of water, freedom of movement, independent legal counsel or independent medical treatment that ultimately led to her death doesn't mean they don't encourage and support that behavior. I read Hubbard's bulletins and policies on PTS Type III incarcerations before I was even off the EPF in the 70s. We all knew that if we had a psychotic break, according to Hubbard's arbitrary criteria, HCO could haul us away and put us in the basement where no one could talk to us and everything had to go through the CS. Some of that was in Flag Orders but most of it was available to public Scientologists if they knew where to look. It was always a bad idea and eventually something would go horribly wrong. That lower level staff and public don't educate themselves by reading news and material critical of Scientology enough to know better is in itself a sign of abuse. That self-censorship existed in Scientology long before the Sea Org. And the Guardians Office was never a Sea Org unit. Like Missions and other non-SO orgs they were kept at a legal arm's length to create layers of firewalls to protect Hubbard from the law and the IRS. Non-SO missions and orgs knowingly supported the maintenance of those firewalls and shared in the mistrust of governmental agencies that could have helped people. By covering for them they were able to do abusive things and finally that abuse turned on them - while Hubbard was still in control.

    It should be obvious that Hubbard only preserved the carefree environment that you nostalgically remember until he knew his days were coming to an end and he had nothing to lose and so he harvested it like a fattened hog. Sure, those were the good ol days when the milk and grain flowed freely, but hey, what happened to the guy next to me? Don't ask.

    I can understand why many Scientologists would want to believe that they didn't contribute to the abuse because it is a very difficult thing to accept but it doesn't change the fact that they did.
  6. Clay Pigeon

    Clay Pigeon Gold Meritorious Patron

    Not guilty.

    Why I never so much as referred to the decrepit bipeds infesting this orb as "wogs"