"Scientology - More than a cult?"
L. Kin, Volume One
Text Sample: Preface
To start off with an anecdote: when I - a young student at the scientology organisation at St.Hill, England, - took my first training courses in the mid-seventies, I was all curiosity and enthusiasm. Yet already in the first week of my being there I had a rather sobering experience, the significance of which didn't dawn on me till many years later. Right outside the course room area, on the lawn, there were some benches. They served - in summer - as an "open air waiting room" for the public who took services in the organisation.
Sitting on one of these benches I met an old man. He was crying. When I askedhim what the matter was, he answered: "Scientology is a marvellous thing if it weren’t for the people who run it."
This simple statement contains - in a nutshell - the whole paradox of scientology. Its founder called it "an applied religious philosophy", but what you see from the outside is big business, scandals, extortion of money from people, governments banning it, the press tearing it up, and what not. On the one hand you have L.Ron Hubbard, a prolific writer and free thinker, and on the other hand a Church of Scientology which anxiously and jealously keeps Hubbard's teachings a secret and considers itself to have a monopoly on them. Here is a man who - in his "Code of a Scientologist" - gives all scientologists the right "to keep Scientologists, the Public and the Press accurately informed concerning Scientology (. . .)", and there you have an apparatus which condemns and prosecutes anyone who does so.
Much has been said about the Church of Scientology (abbreviated to "CofS" from here on) in the media, none of it was good. Much has been said about L.Ron Hubbard, none of it complimentary. I am not going to repeat it. It can be read elsewhere. Yet in order to show how a basically good thing became distorted and perverted partly by its founder and partly by the apparatus he built to promote it, I will have to dedicate Part One of this book to the development of scientology, its founder and the CofS.
Mainly, though, I am going to talk about the thing itself, about the intention and the crusade of Hubbard, about scientology philosophy and its application. This is the concern and the purpose of this book. What is this thing called scientology? What makes people at first rave about it and later condemn it, waste their lives and finances for it, makes them put the blame for their spiritual happiness and failure on it? Is it useful or isn't it? Does it help or does it destroy? - These questions I will try to suggest answers to.
When I assert that scientology is a "basically good thing", I am speaking from my own background of a good ten thousand hours spent doing therapy work with its methods. The time after 1983 plays a greater role regarding the therapy concepts I developed than the time before.
This is because in 1983 the fascist machinations inside the Church of Scientology had reached their peak; out of protest I resigned from my membership - along with thousands of others - and started my own practice. Over the years I succeeded in stripping off the mental narrowness the CofS cultivates in its members and approaching the core of the matter, both in theory and in practice.
The teachings of Hubbard do offer many possibilities of helping people - be it with regard to their troubles and sorrows or their psychosomatic illnesses. How one uses this body of knowledge, is a different matter. Whether one uses it successfully or not, depends on how well one understands it. This is of course true for any body of knowledge. It may be that it gets turned into an ideology, developing all sorts of dogmas, and with a personality cult growing up around its founder, as happened with the CofS. And it must be partly the founder who is to blame and partly the people who follow him in their bigoted way. However, what counts in the end, are positive results.