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Friday, October 1, 2010

Church of Scientology Exposed

The Church of Scientology was founded by Science Fiction Author and con-man extraordinaire, L. Ron Hubbard in 1953. According to Sam Moskowitz, a reporter and writer, Hubbard said: "You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." It certainly worked for him, according to Forbes, he was worth over $200M when he died in 1986. The Church has grown dramatically since that time and today has holdings that no doubt exceed $1B. All of it in the US, is of course, tax free.

Here is a sample of what Scientologists actually believe (here is the entire South Park episode):

Many celebrities including Tom Cruise, Kirsti Alley, and John Travolta are scientologists. The church has enormous power in the entertainment field. It is known for its heavy handed intimidation of any who oppose it. According to Penn Jillette, Showtime will not allow him to expose Scientology on his program Bullshit. He says:
We haven't tackled Scientology because Showtime doesn't want us to. Maybe they have deals with individual Scientologists —- I'm not sure. And we haven't tackled Islam because we have families.

Below is a recent Documentary on the Church of Scientology by  BBC reporter John Sweeney. You may wonder why I would put something about scientology on my blog, since my purpose is to explain why I de-converted from Evangelical Christianity. It is to show that religion, no matter how bizarre, can find devout followers and can hold enormous sway over people's lives.


  1. There are bizarre religions that have devout followers, and that was a factor in your de-conversion from Evangelical Christianity. Facinating.

  2. Yes, it was because it helped me realize that people will believe just about anything. Scientology seems ridiculous to most sane people today but the teachings of the Bible are revered.

  3. Thanks. I'll use that logic later today when I try to convince somebody of the veracity of the Efficient Market Hypothesis over Technical Analysis. I'll let you know how it goes.

  4. Ken,
    I haven't watched the videos yet, but I'm getting ready to. I used to be (and still can be) quite intimidated if someone fervently believes something. They seem so very sure. I start thinking, wow, it must be true then.

    But we KNOW that people strongly believe all kinds of things, even stake their lives on it even die for it, and that does not make it necessarily true.

    One thing, of many, that had me looking at Christianity differently, is that I started thinking-what if it is just one of many religions? What if it's not THE TRUTH while all the others are untrue. I put Christianity on the same playing field. That was a huge shift in my thinking.

    And what's really a turn-off to these religions is that you have to actually be afraid to question them. That makes me lose a lot of respect.

  5. Oh wow. Has DM become a Scientologist, too?
    Just when I thought he couldn't get any crazier...!

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  7. The snide condescension of the anonymous commenter is both pathetically ignorant and unwarranted. Examining what other people are willing to believe ought to lead us to more critically examine how we came to accept our own ideologies. That's the backbone of John Loftus' outsider test for faith. Scientology may be weird and cultish, but it's spread in many ways that are identical to Christianity, and both religions make claims that are logically absurd.

    What I always found most interesting though was how Scientologists have embraced all kinds of mythology about Hubbard's life and accomplishments. If it can happen in the 20th century, it can most certainly happening in the 1st.

  8. Just watched the videos-very creepy. It's so clear that getting us to believe weird things is easier than we might think.

    If we can question the beliefs of scientology, Muslims, Hindus, etc., etc., why can we not question the beliefs of Christianity?

    In Christianity, we have lots of weird things:
    talking snake and donkey
    virgin birth
    resurrection from the dead
    sun standing still
    man living in big fish for several days
    the trinity
    Jesus being God himself
    praising God forever in heaven
    most people burning in hell forever

    I mean, seriously!

  9. The nice thing, Lynn, is that you can interpret the Bible to get rid of everything on that list except resurrection and Jesus' divinity. Frankly, I don't even think the Trinity makes sense; it was merely people trying too hard to accept Christ as divine while insisting on sticking to Judaism's pure monotheistic roots (which were arguably never all that solid anyway).