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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Okay...so.
Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes both have movies coming out and are supposed to be promoting them. Instead they are promoting their relationship and their religion...Scientology.

Now, I had read about it about 10 years ago when the huge push on the books "Dianetics" happened and it seemed, well, suspicious.
I went to the website for Scientology and instead of really talking about its principles all it says is "Buy the books!"
I found this quite thwarting, and tinked off my suspicions even further.

So then I looked it up here...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientology
br>
And holy crap!
Now...sure I can understand the reincarnation bits...but the extraterrestrial tyrant Xenu stacking millions of frozen people at the base of an errupting volcano I have some difficulty swallowing.

I know L. Ron Hubbard (creator) was a sci-fiction writer, and that he came under alot of fire for creating this "religion".

Some of the concepts are interesting. It is completely against psychia/ologies, and their drugs, and claims that they are repressors of our past traumas..past meaning before birth in this life.
And that reaching a certain level of Scientology (which will cost you $360,000 apparently) will also help you to unlock your superhuman powers to control time, matter, energy and space.

So...um...what do you think about this "religion"?


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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spiralx


spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK

Total posts: 1376
Posted:Written by: Valura
Hey did anyone else notice that the page that spiral linked to in regards to murder/sucidies and scientology, that only two of them work? The rest are 404 and broken links? 2 out of 23 links work.
HMMMMMMMM someone been cleaning up the net a little? confused


Most likely... they've been trying to shut down the Operation Clambake site for years and years now, I'm very impressed with the fact that it's still going in the face of legal and other threats.


"Moo," said the happy cow.

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prosparityfire
SILVER Member since Apr 2004

member
Location: Adelaide, SA

Total posts: 13
Posted:It seems that the most astute view of Scientology I have seen, is that in some form they are taught with a good premise, but built upon a warped principle. But I think that if Scientologies marketing department could talk to those in a less evasive way, perhaps on "Sundays" or after youth group or during the next boy scout meeting people would have less conflict with how they are approached. And not already turned off by what they have to say because of how it is said (as the lock goes click). Money is made buy all people upon their own volition it would seem in Scientology, if they choose to spend their is nothing wrong with that and kudoes to Hubbard, Bill Gates, or Hitler to create. I mean even bibles cost money still, unless you stay at a hotel then you get one complimentary..... clap
It seems to be just another way to dress a pig.

I read a book, The truth about Scientology. That despite its possible biases reveals interesting documented names, and accounts of the Scientology yacht, 60's? audit, and other experiences members had with L. Ron. And just a hint, its supposedly not a coincidence that Goldfinger from the original bond looks like L. Ron Hubbard. The idea of an inherent large corporation bent on stealing or destroying the world was also inspired by Scientology and their encounters with countries along the Mediterranean....


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Medusa
BRONZE Member since Nov 2003

Medusa

veteran
Location: 8 days at Cloudbreak, 6 in Per...

Total posts: 1433
Posted:It's not so much that I have a problem with religions having their religious books...it is more that this particular religion they keep telling you about a "new" book that you "require", or a new course that you "have" to take...so they just keep trying to get more and more money out of you.



And if you don't fork out the money they make you feel guilty about it...they almost bankrupted one of my friend's family members.

EDITED_BY: Medusa (1120202902)


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Catalyst
SILVER Member since Nov 2003

Catalyst

member
Location: Virginia

Total posts: 103
Posted:are you kidding me.....all religions have their marketers and sales people....pushing you in their direction!!!! One is no worse than the other....religion, of course being a topic that people have killed and died for.....they're all the same guised under different ruled and regulations....all claiming to be THE one. I have worked in an office where they were into scientology...and the only thing that I can say about from studying it was that I came out a better learner .....much of what they teach and use in offices centers around learning skillls and learning how to communicate with each other. It's not all bad.....and just like every other religion.....you're just supposed to pick out the bits and peices that you like!! ubbrollsmile

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flid
BRONZE Member since Aug 2002

flid

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Warwickshire

Total posts: 3136
Posted:Written by: pele
Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes both have movies coming out and are supposed to be promoting them. Instead they are promoting their relationship and their religion





I don't watch much TV but I've seen them premoting batman plenty. Maybe it's a UK thing/they assume no one in the UK would take them seriously only amercians tongue



Written by: pele
the extraterrestrial tyrant Xenu stacking millions of frozen people at the base of an errupting volcano I have some difficulty swallowing





The same could be said about most of the bible. I openned a copy for the first time the other day whilst lying in a hospital bed and forgot quite how much stuff was in there that common sense dictates to be complete nonsense, yet people have used as the basis for systematic racism, sexism, abuse/gennocide/wars over the years.



Written by: pele
So...um...what do you think about this "religion"?





I think it's a load of b*llocks, but then I think that about most organised religion.



On a side note thou, surely this thread should be deleted for being derogatory towards other people's beleifs. I'm pretty sure if i created a thread claiming that the christanity in the uk (aka the church of england) was a cult made by a corrupt meglomaniac who thought he was god, not a proper religion and everyone subscribing to it breaking the 10 commandments by worshiping a false idol it'd upset a few people.


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quiet


quiet

analytic
Location: bristol

Total posts: 503
Posted:no - it's fine to be 'derogatory towards other people's beliefs', as long as your criticism is well-founded, considered, and not designed to cause offence. for instance, it'd be fine to label the BNP a bunch of illiterate, ignorant racists - because that's what they are - even if it offends 'em.

ture na sig

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:Is it okay to be derogatory to them if they are to you?

Like I could call the BNP anything I wanted if I was from a background other than white English National, because that's what they say about me.

But in the context of Religion, is it okay to do the same? If a Catholic Fundamentalist told me I was a sinner and should be "purged" or whatever, do I have the right to make derogatory comments (however well founded) about his religion?


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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quiet


quiet

analytic
Location: bristol

Total posts: 503
Posted:um, in some contexts

that is, if a roman catholic has the right to tell me that i'm going to hell, then I have the right to tell him that he is going to hell. all people should be protected equally in this respect, so if they think that they have the right to say it, then they think that everyone must have the right . . .


ture na sig

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flid
BRONZE Member since Aug 2002

flid

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Warwickshire

Total posts: 3136
Posted:an eye for an eye.......

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Birgit
BRONZE Member since Jan 2005

Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh

Total posts: 4145
Posted:According to rumours Hubbard started the whole thing because he had a bet with his mate (and fellow sci fi writer) Theodor Sturgeon about whether he could found a religion or not.

They recruit quite close to where I live with "free psychology profiles" in the Hubbard centre... I've always been tempted to go and see what they're really like but I get talked into things really easily and hate having to be rude to people who want to sell me a new religion so I guess I'll better stay away.

I also knew one of the top-anti-scientologists in Germany, but he was just as weird in his own way as most of them, and didn't have anything else to talk about.


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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linden rathen
GOLD Member since Mar 2005

linden rathen

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: London, UK

Total posts: 6942
Posted:id be interested to take a test just to see what im rated as but no where near me

i think having a bad space dude called xenu makes it a pretty cool religion - in an odd kinda we will program you way

reading a few extracts of their stuff on line is like reading a C++ programming manuel.

i think if counting opinions is derogirtory then yes it should be deleted but open debate should be allowed

and this debate seems to be vering on the " its a bit odd and dangerous side of things"


back

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Gnarly Cranium
SILVER Member since Feb 2005

Gnarly Cranium

member
Location: San Francisco

Total posts: 186
Posted:Written by: Pele

From dictionary.com

Cult

1. A religion or religious sect generally considered to be extremist or false, with its followers often living in an unconventional manner under the guidance of an authoritarian, charismatic leader.
2. The followers of such a religion or sect.

Therefore, a cult *is* recognised, but also concidered extremist by current social standards.




Weird.. that's not at all the definition that was explained in detail to me in the religions unit of my last Anthropology class sequence. According to the prof and the textbooks, a 'cult' is a fringe religious variation, not necessarily 'extremist', just not widespread-- and all major religions started off as cults at one point or another.

The definition on Wikipedia goes like this:
"In religion and sociology, a cult is a group of people (often a new religious movement) devoted to beliefs and goals which may be contradictory to those held by the majority of society. Its marginal status may come about either due to its novel belief system or due to idiosyncratic practices that cause the surrounding culture to regard it as far outside the mainstream."


I guess it's all just down to semantics and context, at any rate.


"Ours is not to question The Head; it is enough to revel in the ubiquitous inanity of The Head, the unwanted proximity of The Head, the unrelenting HellPresence of The Head, indeed the very UNYIELDING IRRELEVANCE of The Head!" --Revelation X

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Feuerkind


newbie


Total posts: 6
Posted:Oooh, I was going to lurk for a while, but I can't keep myself from answering now wink

The word 'cult' should not be applied to $cientology at all: it has nothing to do with religion. It is a money-making scheme, and they only try to come off as a religion because they will get tax benefits from it.

I used to mirror Operation Clambake on my site a few years back, but had to take it down due to repeated threats from the big bosses and their lawyers in Copenhagen. They were going to sue me for publishing copyrighted material, as far as I can remember, when in fact they normally deny that the papers describing the different OT levels are from them at all. Bunch of weirdos. At long last I took it down, because I was afraid of what might happen.

I also visited the local centre in Oslo, did the test, saw the movie and - surprise! - I needed to buy some books, then I would improve enormously and get the powers to twist people around my little fingers. And be allowed to buy more books, of course. Never at any time did they mention any beliefs in any god or deity of any kind, only talking about self-improvement and 'getting better than others'.

It's also rather creepy that every centre has an office for mr Hubbard standing there, waiting for him, though the sod has been dead for ages. Did I say dead? I meant 'he reached another level'.

Ok. Time to go and spin before my head spins more wink


... doch kein Feuer, blended wei
taute je in mir das Eis...

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:It is an interesting point of discussion to wonder why Scientology should be worse than any other of the myriad fcensoredked-up religions out there, whether they're practiced by billions or thousands.

To me, it's the belief that "all medicine is poison to the body" and that psychiatric complaints can be cured by "auditing." Maybe I'm just biased as a physician.

I also don't appreciate their use of Narconon, which is supposed to seem to be similar to Narcotics Anonymous or Al-Anon, to recruit.

But is it really that bad to make people believe completely incredible things?

I mean...a man in the sky with a white beard who created the universe and is in this battle with this dude underground in a pit of fire and if you're good you go to the sky and if you're bad then eternal fire? That's no more sensible than thetans and aliens clamped to you.

And have you SEEN the Vatican? Want to talk about money-making? Wow...

So I'm not sure, other than the medical bit, that Scientology is really that much worse than any other religion. Their beliefs are just a bit less familiar.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Thing is, no one is saying they are worse for thier beliefs, many are (I think) saying they are worse for their practices.

The entire "Surpress oppressors by any means necessary and it will be forgiven" as one of their rules and the fect that the demand alot of money *without* a real return to the members or the public is what gets the "yup, they're nasty" label.

I have yet to visit any church that has demanded that I purchase $500 in books, makes me take a test to see how "fit" I am to be part of them, or locks me in a room...some have come close.

Yup, most "religions" are so overly political now that I personally believe they have lost sight of the tenets of their own beliefs.
However, Scientology is a farce.
It is a "religion" (in the U.S., other countries won't allow it to be) for tax purposes not because of its beliefs.


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:Yeah, agreement on the Vatican point, but to be fair that was built when Roman Catholicism was practiced by most of Europe. Because it affected everyone (whether they practised or not) it was easy to get the money for it through taxation.

And I would say that aliens are more credible than deities, but I think they're more likely to mark our Solar System as a "No Go" area rather than come and save "The Worthy" or whatever.

$cientology ubblol


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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=Flashpoint=
SILVER Member since Sep 2004

=Flashpoint=

Pasta of Muppets
Location: in the interwebs...

Total posts: 2719
Posted:sethis - $cientology ubblol

oh man...

To quote "Dogma" - "Its kinda hard to change a belief, its a lot easier to change an idea"

Some of the principles in Scientology, as I have read them, seem like good deductive reasoning (i.e. he made it up, but it sounds logical)
However, once an idea becomes a belief system, it starts to fail. Look at Christianity!

----Disclaimer - If you're Catholic, look away now, I have no wish to offend anyone, but my views may be viewed as offensive by some people - Sorry, but this is my opinion only!----------------

Roman Catholicism is a cult! Just a very successful one. When, i think it was, Emperor Constantine was getting a bit p/o with established Roman religion, he decided "That bunch of people we've been throwing to the lions, those "Christians", that looks good to me..." He threw out a lot of the gospels, found 4 that suited his ideals (control, mostly) and installed it as the official religion of the Roman empire... The reason the Vatican is in Rome is political, nothing to do with the religion, when the HQ of Christianity should really be Jerusalem.

In the early Christians (the ones who used the fish as the symbol of their faith, not the cross) were a suppressed order.

I'll stop there and draw comparisons on topic now!!!

Scientology has some good ideas, the idea that spirit is important, resonant energy that kinda thing, but all the alien stuff is far too far fetched. the heirarchy (*) system looks like Masonry, all secret orders and the like, simply appears as a way to get peeps to spend more money! *sigh*

Just like the founding era of Catholicism? A strong power base distributing dogma to the populace? *Help*

*hierarchy
c.1343, from O.Fr. ierarchie, from M.L. hierarchia "ranked division of angels" (in the system of Dionysius the Areopagite), from Gk. hierarchia "rule of a high priest," from hierarches "high priest, leader of sacred rites," from ta hiera "the sacred rites" (neut. pl. of hieros "sacred") + archein "to lead, rule." Sense of "ranked organization of persons or things" first recorded 1619, initially of clergy, probably infl. by higher.


ohmygodlaserbeamspewpewpew!
ubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmile

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:Scientology is as farcical as any religion. If religion is the correct word?

Flashpoint, Roman Catholicism is a religion not a cult, because of a belief in a supernatural God.


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:Catholicism isn't a Religion by virtue of a belief in a supernatural god, plenty of Cults believe that. It is a Religion because it is accepted by the majority of people. It is a world affirming movement rather than a world rejecting one.

After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Icer
SILVER Member since Apr 2005

Icer

just a shadow of my former self...
Location: Christchurch

Total posts: 205
Posted:ok, for the cult definition, it was discussed earlier, and the belief in a supernatural God has not alot to do with the definitions of either a cult or religion, in that it is not a distiinguishing characteristis of either. you can have a religion which does not believe in a supernatural God (or Gods), it is the belief (or nonbelief) of spiritual reality based on faith (faith meaning that you cannot prove conclusiviely that the reality you believe is the one and only truth).

for the record religion and cult are not mutually exclusive; a cult is a sub-catergory of religion.

i think Pele said it best with..."most "religions" are so overly political now that I personally believe they have lost sight of the tenets of their own beliefs." i think is the reason so many ppl have such a negative view of 'organised' religions.

as usual these are just my thoughts and im sure someone out there will disagree.


It took a while, but once their numbers dropped from 50 down to 8, the other dwarves started to suspect Hungry.

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=Flashpoint=
SILVER Member since Sep 2004

=Flashpoint=

Pasta of Muppets
Location: in the interwebs...

Total posts: 2719
Posted:one up my ditto count...

Written by:

think Pele said it best with..."most "religions" are so overly political now that I personally believe they have lost sight of the tenets of their own beliefs." i think is the reason so many ppl have such a negative view of 'organised' religions.




ditto


ohmygodlaserbeamspewpewpew!
ubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmile

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:Sethis, I think you will find that Catholicism is a religion by virtue of a belief in a supernatural God. Apart from Judaism, Christianity and Islam could you suggest a few of these many monotheistic cults/religions that you indicate are out there. I would be interested in learning more about them.

Icer, perhaps my definition of religion is passe, but I think that a monotheistic belief in a definitive distinguishing characteristic b/t religions.

The only reason people look down on scientology is because it is perhaps a bit more transparent that umm so called more conventional belief systems, and what are considered "proper" religions.

Whether it is good or bad is purely subjective, and since when have religions NOT been political and manipulative ? ? ?

Karl Marx said it best religion is the opiate of the masses.

dream on wink


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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quiet


quiet

analytic
Location: bristol

Total posts: 503
Posted:quote: ' but I think that a monotheistic belief in a definitive distinguishing characteristic b/t religions. '

Hinduism, stone?

n.b. misquote: the *opium*, not the opiate


ture na sig

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:And since that quote is always taken out of context, I wonder if anyone knows what the rest of the paragraph says? wink

Other monotheistic cults? Most of the offshoots from Christianity. Quakers, Evangelicals, Methodists, and all of the other denominations.

Well, the debate here seems to be wallowing in semantics slightly, so can I redirect people to the original question, that of peoples opinion of Scientology? I've yet to see anyone supporting it in it's entireity, in fact, not very many people seem to be that supportive in Religion in general.

Lots of questions along the lines of "What makes Scientology worse than anything else?" But that isn't really answering the question.

I personally think that its a bit like Terry Pratchett's view of the Patrician:
"But he doesn't wear a crown or sit on a throne and he doesn't tell you it's right that he should rule. I hate the bas*ard. But he's honest. Honest like a corkscrew."

Kind of like Scientology; it takes your money, but doesn't pretend that there's a right or noble reason for it. It's all about selfishness.


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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polythene


veteran
Location: London/ Surrey

Total posts: 1359
Posted:I like that in Pratchett's universe, the gods go out, get drunk, then throw rocks through atheists' windows smile

The optimist claims that we are living in the best of all possible worlds.
The pessimist fears this is true.

Always make time to play in the snow.

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:"The survival odds of an Atheist weraing copper armour standing on the top of a mountain during a storm..."

Sorry, maybe I should start my own Pratchett thread...


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:Thanx Quiet, will check it out as I dont know much about Hinduism.

Most quotes are wrong and out of context, so!

Offshoots from Christianity, my point

Well I cant imagine why people are so un-supportive of religion in general. Perhaps, it has something to do with their track record.

Back on topic, personally I loved Time Enough for Love, but Stranger in a Strange Land waz the best.

Checks spelling, hopes I got the titles right wink

barrrrrrr


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Icer
SILVER Member since Apr 2005

Icer

just a shadow of my former self...
Location: Christchurch

Total posts: 205
Posted:i think the semantic issue is caused by the problem of defining religion in a non-circular fashion. i dont know how you would do that. when you use any term that is based in religion to define it, you presume an understanding of what it is your trying to define. like using terms such as 'sacred', 'profane' or 'deity', they all entail a certain degree of pre-understanding.

as for pratchett? havnt read any of his books, i many read eddings, gemmel, wies and hickman, terry brooks. when i dont have to read anthro journals and the like.


It took a while, but once their numbers dropped from 50 down to 8, the other dwarves started to suspect Hungry.

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:I need to read some more Pratchett, think I read one and really liked it.

Just picked up "Shamans Crossing" by Robin Hobb, who I think is the best since Raymond Feist and the Magician series.


smile


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:Gemmel is also very good at exemplifying moral dilemmas in a fantasy setting. That is what I like about Pratchett and Gemmel, and many other Fantasy writers as well, they show the ethical problems faced by people trying to do the right thing in an impossible situation. Plus the fact that they can show various "real-life" attitudes without having people ring them up accusing them of hating whatever sub-culture they belong to. Anyone read "Small Gods" by TP? It's got some *very* good points to make about the evolution and function of Religion.

See, I knew there was an "On-Topic" point in there somewhere wink


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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