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Church of Scientology
Founder: L. Ron Hubbard

Overview
In the 1940's Hubbard declared:

"Writing for a penny a word is ridiculous. If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion" 1

It was started in the 1950s by a science fiction writer named L. Ron Hubbard in fulfilment to his declared aim to start a religion to make money. It is an offshoot to a method of psychotherapy he concocted from various sources which he named "Dianetics". Dianetics is a form of regression therapy. It was then further expanded to appear more like a religion in order to enjoy tax benefits. He called it "Scientology".

The main symbol of Scientology is composed of:

  • The letter "S" which represents Scientology.

  • An upper triangle whose sides represent three closely interrelated factors: knowledge, responsibility and control.

  • A lower triangle which represents affinity, reality and communication.

The Founder of the Church of Scientology was Lafayette Ronald Hubbard (1911-1986), born in Tilden, Nebraska on March 13, 1911. Hubbard traveled extensively during his youth, covering some quarter of a million miles by the time he was twenty years of age, including directing two expeditions to the Caribbean. On one expedition, he made the first mineralogical survey of Puerto Rico.

During the 1930's, he became a famous author. Although he was known mostly for his science fiction, he also worked in other genres including mystery, western and adventure. He was also successful as a screen writer. His lifetime output of published fiction was over 200 novels, novelettes and short stories.

In 1938, in an unpublished manuscript Excalibur, he delineated the common denominator of existence as "survive" and outlined the theory that "life is composed of two things: the material universe and an X-factor...that can evidently organize and mobilize the material universe." This fundamental concept was to be the basis of his later researches for both Dianetics and Scientology.

The Second World War intervened and his first published work on Dianetics appeared in the Winter/Spring 1949-50 issue of the Explorers Club Journal entitled "Terra Incognita: The Mind". At this time he offered his findings on the mind to both the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association. Both organizations rejected them and later attempted to discredit his work and reputation. In May 1950, "Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health" was published; it has since sold over 17 million copies worldwide. In the fall of 1951, Hubbard formed the religious philosophy of Scientology, which is based on his discovery that man is most fundamentally a spiritual being -- the X-factor. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles on February 18, 1954 by persons other than Hubbard. The Founding Church of Scientology was founded in Washington, DC in 1955-JUL.

The US Food and Drug Administration raided Scientology offices on January 4, 1963 and seized hundreds of the Church's E-meters as illegal medical devices. The devices are now required to carry a disclaimer saying that they are a purely religious artifact. They are used in a Scientology counseling technique known as "auditing".

All church of scientology documents are copyrighted and are not available for just any individual.  Fees totaling thousands of dollars must be paid by church members to view the various levels of enlightenment, eight in all.  The church scriptures are considered trade secrets and the church has shown in the past that they will vigorously pursue anyone who tries to expose or publish their documents.

The Church of Scientology is a vicious and dangerous cult that masquerades as a religion. Its purpose is to make money and it practices a variety of mind-control techniques on people lured into its midst to gain control over their money and their lives. Its aim is to take from them every penny that they have and can ever borrow and to also enslave them to further its wicked ends. Scientology is a confused concoction of dangerously applied psychotherapy, inapplicable rules and ideas, and science-fiction drivel that is presented to its members (at the "advanced" levels) as profound spiritual truth.

Cult Beliefs:

  • Scientologists follow Mr. Hubbard's belief that a person is neither mind nor body, but a spiritual being - a soul. However, the word "soul" has been given many meanings by many religions. In order to avoid confusion, Mr. Hubbard selected the word "thetan" from the Greek letter "theta" which has traditionally meant "thought" or "life". A Thetan is the essence of a person, One does not have a Thetan, one is a Thetan. The brain, and the rest of the body, is looked upon as a mechanism, a communication center for the Thetan. The mind is perceived as a collection of pictures.

  • Scientology recognizes "Eight Dynamics." A "dynamic" is an urge, drive or impulse. Understanding these dynamics help a person gain insight and harmonize all their life activities. The first four dynamics were initially described by Mr. Hubbard in Dianetics; the remaining four were added with the creation of Scientology:
     

    • The First Dynamic is the urge to survive as oneself.

    • The Second the urge to survive through family and sex.

    • The Third is to survive in various groups such as a company or with a group of friends.

    • The Fourth is to survive as mankind.

    • The Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth are the urge to survive through other life forms such as animals, the physical universe, the spiritual universe and Infinity or God respectively.

  • The human mind is divided into two components: the analytical mind and the reactive mind. The former resembles Freud's concept of the conscious mind; it senses, remembers, reasons and recalls. The reactive mind is somewhat similar to Freud's unconscious. It records physically and psychologically disturbing events in this life and prior lives. These include perceived assaults in the womb, the birth process, assaults, injuries etc. They are recorded as engrams which are a form of psychic scar. These engrams are considered "the single source of all man's insanities, psychosomatic illnesses and neuroses.". They are not sensed by the analytical mind directly. However, they will degrade a person's life and keep an individual from reaching their full potential. By removing the engrams, one can progress from being "preclear" (PC) to "clear;" i.e. totally free of engrams.

  • A person can progress beyond "clear" to becoming a "OT" or "Operating Thetan." An OT is able to leave their body and mind. They can see, hear and feel without access to their normal senses.

  • Great religious leaders like Buddha and Jesus Christ are regarded as being slightly above "clear".

  • Scientologists reject the concept of eternal life in hell and heaven. They believe in reincarnation in which a person passes through a number of lifetimes. They believe that personal salvation in one lifetime is freedom from the cycle of birth and death.

  • They believe that God exists, but do not have a specific belief about the nature of that deity.

  • Their goal is to help sufficient numbers of people to become "clear" so that a significant impact can be felt in areas of crime, mental illness, warfare, drug addiction, physical illnesses etc.

  • Scientology "auditing" is a unique form of personal counseling intended to help an individual look at his own existence and improve their ability to confront what and where they are. It is a precise, thoroughly codified activity with exact procedures. A Scientology counselor is known as an "auditor". Auditing is assisted by use of a specially designed meter (E-Meter or Electro-psychometer) which they believe helps locate areas of spiritual distress or travail by measuring the mental state or change of state of the person being audited. It does this by continuously measuring the electrical resistance of the person's body. Variations of resistance are shown on a ammeter which are then interpreted by the trained auditor. The E-Meter was invented by Volny Mathieson who gave it to L.R. Hubbard. It is covered under US Patent 3,290,589 "Device for Measuring and Indicating Changes in the Resistance of a Human Body", issued on December 6, 1966.

  • An equal part of the practice of Scientology is training in Scientology principles which includes the technology of the auditing process.

  • The whole purpose of auditing and training is to graduate individuals to a higher state of spiritual existence or to cross "The Bridge to Total Freedom." The goal is to revive the individual as a spiritual being and free him from dependence on the material universe. The metaphor of a bridge has long been used in religious tradition to denote the route across the chasm from where we are now to a higher plateau of existence.

  • Auditors are members of the clergy. They are ordained and wear clerical clothing.

  • Not being an exclusive religion, members are welcomed to retain their church affiliation when they become Scientologists.

  • Another Scientology symbol is an eight-pointed cross. The eight points represent the eight Dynamics, described above. The cross also represents the transition from materialism to spirituality and the crossing of that barrier.

  • The Church of Scientology has been accused of not allowing members to leave the church, or of endlessly harassing them in an attempt to force them back into the fold. The church's official position is that if a person leaves and asks to be taken off the membership/mailing lists, they are not contacted. Otherwise they might expect to get a phone call or letter of inquiry.


Reader's Digest reprint May 1980

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