What is Scientology?
The church of Scientology was formed by the journalist and science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard (1911-1986). Hubbard was very interested in the occult and, like Rudolf Steiner, the former of Anthroposophy, and like the famous Satanist Aleister Crowley, he had been involved in O.T.O (Ordo Templi Orientis) a subgroup of the Rosicrucian orden. Actually Hubbard practiced many rituals with Clowley's acolyte Jack Parson, from whom he cheated all of his money and his wife! Hubbard also expressed his admiration for Crowley in many lectures and articles.
His first step in creating Scientology was the publishing of Dianectics in 1950. It combined psychoanalysis with more obscure pseudo-sciences, thought of all diseases as psychosomatic (i.e. caused by the mind), and got great response from Hubbard's science fiction readers. By following the method of dianectics, you would drastically raise your IQ, become unsusceptible to diseases, and get photographical memory!
Hubbard soon mixed more and more occult ideas into Dianectics and the religion of Scientology arose. In the religion you go through dianectics courses to reach higher grades (8 main grades, totally 27 if you count the sub-groups), and every course costs a lot of money. Those who wish to reach the highest grades have to pay up to a total of half a million Swedish kronor (about $60-70 000). Interestingly enough, Hubbard had told some of his friends a few years earlier that creating a religion would be the best way to make a fortune.
According to Hubbard he wrote his books through automatic writing (dictated by his "Empress"). One book took only three weeks to write with a typewriter with special keys for words such as "and", "for" and "but". Pharmaceutics are bad, and only dump toxic waste in the body. It seems quite ambiguous that Hubbard nevertheless advocated the usage of drugs such as amphetamine! Dianectic auditioning can cure all diseases such as rheumatism, allergia, asthma and ulcer.
Hubbard believed in reincarnation (though he used Crowley's term "passed lives") and spirits. The scientological cosmology tells us about the latest 60 Billion years of the history of the universe. Heaven is located at a high mountain on another planet. Hubbard claimed to have been there several times, the first one "34691832611177 years, 344 days, 10 hours, 20 minutes and 40 seconds" ago. He also tried to find treasures that he had buried in his former lives, but they must have been too rigorously hidden, for he found nothing. Several of Hubbard's followers thought they were re-incarnations of Jesus Christ, and Hubbard himself claimed to have been D.H. Lawrence. How that is possible I do not know, since Lawrence died 19 years after Hubbard was born!
Add that the "secret" text Operating Thetan talks about highly developed alien colonies in space and you have a complete mumbo-jumbo pseudoscientific authoritative cult. It is no wonder why many scientologists have had nervous breakdowns!
Scientology, copyright and free speech
The story of Scientology vs. free speech began in 1995(?) when a former scientologist, Steve Fishman, used the "secret" texts Operating Thetan and The Road to Xenu of Scientology as evidence in a court of law in the United States, and published them on FACTNet on the Internet. The "church" managed to have the texts withdrawn, by claiming that they were copyrighted.
In the spring of 1996 a Dutch journalist mirrored the Fishman papers (on the Xs4All server), so people would know what scientology stands for and not be ignorantly fooled into the sect. Soon he got sued by the sect for violating copyright laws. But information wants to be free, and before the Scientologists could stop it, Internet users all over the world had copied the texts and put them on their own sites. Due to the, sometimes inflammatory, contents of the papers, the "church" would not acknowledge all of it, and hence they lost the case in Holland.
In Sweden, one of those persons was Zenon Panoussis. The Scientologists at once attacked, not Mr. Panoussis personally, but threatened his Internet providers to make them close down the site, which they did. A couple of days later one of the providers, Tele2, restored the page. According to their press secretary Tele2 will not close down the page until (and if) there is a sentence of guilty. Later Panoussis issued a little booklet with the Fishman papers.
The sect convinced the district court to break into Panoussis home and confiscate the information he had about Scientology in order to prevent further spreading of the material. This included the hard disk of his computer -- that must have hurt!
What did Mr. Panoussis do? Revenge is sweet! He turned in everything he had as evidence to the district court, whereby they became public acts which anyone can read if they want. Just go to the district court in Stockholm and request the information. The act has number T 7-866-96. There is one problem, though -- day and night there is a scientologist sitting there reading the file, so you will have problems getting to the information.
Some famous Scientologists
Charles Manson was a scientologist before he became crazy and formed the (in-)famous "Manson Family". In a letter to the "church" Manson told them that he had reached the highest Thetan, "clear", and did no longer need the services of the church.
The scientologists are on a "mission" in Hollywood, to attract celebrities. The reason is obviously that a star on their side is good PR. Lisa-Marie Presley is a scientologist and some people say that the marriage between her and Michael Jackson was an attempt to catch him in the sect. Some people who have been caught by the cult are John Travolta and Tom Cruise. On FACTNet report you can find more information on this.
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Last update: April 14, 1998