Another non-ex-sci saying hello

Underwater

New Member
Hi all,

New member here…NOT an Ex-Sci, just a wog with a personal interest in Scientology, and a feeling of inspiration to help, if I can.

My only real exposure to Scientology was back around 1979, when I was in college. A boyfriend was introduced to Scientology by a friend. It’s so long ago I can’t remember the exact details of his involvement, but I know he spent some time at an Org, and may have even taken a course and/or experienced some auditing.

I remember him telling me about the whole concept of engrams, and the e-meter, and he thought these were interesting ideas but wasn’t sold on them. We discussed them from an intellectual perspective, and we both had some skepticism…much of it, while intriguing, just didn’t make sense. For example, the idea that engrams are supposed to have such a huge impact on you, but they ONLY are formed when you have periods of unconsciousness. This one had us baffled – neither one of us had ever HAD a period of unconsciousness, other than sleep! We’d never been in an accident, never fainted, nothing. So when would we have gotten these engrams?

Anyway, not too much time passed before he decided the whole thing was a bunch of crap. I think they started really hitting him up for money, and being a poor college student he didn’t have much…and that did it, he dropped out. Well, he started getting phone calls at all hours of the day and night, even though he told them he thought they were a bunch of loser whack jobs. Then they started calling his PARENTS, telling them that he was mentally ill, and he had to come in for "treatment" or he’d be in serious trouble. That pissed him off.

He decided the only way to get them to stop calling him was to convince them once and for all that he REALLY wasn’t interested. He was taking some kind of college class at the time in which he had to do a research paper and present it in front of the class, and he decided to do it on how Scientology is a cult. His friend told the Org, and they actually sent goons to his classroom on the day of his presentation, to try to physically stop him from giving it! They also called his boss and told him that he was getting into legal trouble, and they would be winning a judgment against him and would garnish his pay…or some crap like that. He almost got fired.

In the end he gave his presentation, which hopefully enlightened a room full of people and prevented a few more from joining (it was starting to spread like wildfire back then). They apparently did leave him alone after that…I don’t really know any more, as we broke up…but I did run into him years later and he told me he STILL got the occasional call from them, trying to get him back in! Knowing how they pad their numbers, I’ll bet they still list him on their rolls as a “church member.” ;)

Anyway, ever since then I knew that it was a dangerous cult, and I would follow the occasional media reports about it, and laugh at the jokes told by Conan O’Brien and others, and shake my head at the moron celebrities that got sucked into it. But then I heard about Lisa McPherson, and I started doing some research…I found Operation Clambake a couple years ago, and I think I spend an entire weekend reading that site. I’ve kept up with it ever since.

As you all know, there’s been a recent rash of media attention on Scientology – all of it bad. The high-level defections, the St. Petersburg Times article, Marc Headley’s book, etc. etc. I actually bought Marc’s book a couple weeks ago, and read it in a weekend! (If anyone wants to read my review of it, I posted it on Amazon…please forgive me that I only gave it 4 stars, but I was trying to review it as a *reader*, not as an anti-Scientologist. You’ll know which review is mine – I’m the only one so far who gave it 4 stars.)

I tend to be a bit of a social activist – I throw whatever support I can behind causes such as women’s rights to abortion/contraception, gay civil rights, separation of church & state, etc. I’m a writer, and I have had numerous editorial columns published in local papers on the topics that interest me, and have done some picketing (e.g. against Prop 8, the anti-gay-marriage law out here in CA). I am horrified by the abuses of Scientology, and I wish there was some way I could become involved in the fight to STOP it.

In the meantime, Scientology has sort of cropped up again in MY life…my teenage son was approached by an older guy at the local skate park. I don’t know exactly what he said, but my son told me he was talking to him about Scientology and wanted him to go to an Org with him. I’ve never heard of Sci recruiting kids at skate parks…is this something new? It was a funny coincidence in any event because he’d JUST written an essay for his English class about dangerous cults…although his paper had focused more on the Manson family (what teenage boy isn’t intrigued by Charles Manson, right?). He and I had had some conversations about Scientology when he was writing that paper, so he knew all about it.

Now it’s a new semester, and he has to write a “controversial essay” for his English class…and he’s chosen to write it on “Scientology – Religion or Cult?” We’re having fun doing the research, and I am very proud of him for some of his insights.

Anyway, sorry for the long-winded post…hey, I’m a writer, why say something in 10 words if you can use 500? ;) I just want to say that I feel such compassion for all the abuses that so many of you have suffered, and I have shed tears at your stories. I’ve been a lurker for a while, and I thought I would just pop in here and tell you all that there are many of us non-ex-Sci’s out here who read your stories, spread the word, and help to ensure that nobody gets taken in by these criminals again…at least, nobody among our sphere of influence. This site DOES get noticed out in the world, and it DOES make a difference.

If anyone has suggestions on things that I could do the help the cause, let me know. I don’t know if I’m up for anonymous picketing, but I’m always open to writing letters to the editor, or to political figures, and of course just spreading the word.
 

thetanic

Gold Meritorious Patron
I'd actually like to see a real academic paper on the stated views about children from a public-facing perspective vs. the cold hard realities, including marriage break-ups and abortions, inside.

...and how that is different than established religions and similar to (or different from) other cults.

Since you asked. :)
 

Div6

Crusader
Welcome Underwater, and thanks for your introduction. I am constantly amazed at the quality and class of people who get pulled in to the vortex of viewpoints, emotions, stories and opinions that is ESMB.

"In war, truth is the first casualty." - Aeschylus Greek tragic dramatist (525 BC - 456 BC)

All we are really trying to do is establish honesty and truth, from a multiplicty of viewpoints. Corporate Scientology relies on propaganda and lies. Which will set no one free.

Thanks again.
 

Kutta

Silver Meritorious Patron
Welcome Underwater and thanks for all you posted. I am sure letters to editors or stories in newspapers or mags would all help. God, that's really creepy, your son being approached at the skate park. He sounds like a very intelligent lad, and thank god he already had the info about cults.
 
Welcome Underwater!

Welcome newbie! If you surf around the threads here, you will find several petitions and polls you can take part in. You might check with your County Education Department and see if study technology or the way to happiness, or any other scientology front materials have been approved for use as educational materials in schools, and you can start educating your local board of education and county superintendant of schools about that. Your son and his friends could get involved with that effort.
 
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dontscamme

Patron Meritorious
Underwater said:
I did run into him years later and he told me he STILL got the occasional call from them, trying to get him back in! Knowing how they pad their numbers, I’ll bet they still list him on their rolls as a “church member.” ;)

I think you are right about that. But the actual number of names in their files doesn't really matter. They pull numbers out of thin air whenever they think it will help their image as "the fastest growing religion on the planet."

:welcome:
 

DCAnon

Silver Meritorious Patron
Welcome! Social activist, eh? The best thing someone can do against the abuses of Scientology is to talk. Talk to people about what you've learned, encourage discussion and debate, ask people to look into it for themselves. The only things keeping Scientology afloat are threats and secrecy. By promoting the freedom and accessibility of knowledge and not being afraid to talk about it, they'll fall apart.
 

Mystic

Crusader
Hi Underwater. I love to see non-ex-scns posting on ESMB. The more the merrier. And approached your son in a park???? Sheeh.
 

GreyWolf

Gold Meritorious Patron
As long as there are good people out there like you spreading the word. maybe one less person will fall victime. Thank you and welcome.

Bob
 
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