Introducing myself

betskand

Patron with Honors
MissWog suggested that I introduce myself. I'm a never-in who has been on the Bunker for a few months. The reason is that a friend gave me Lawrence Wright's book in December. I read it and was HORRIFIED. There is no Scientology presence where I live, and I probably have never even met a Scientologist; my idea of the whole thing was that it was just kind of a joke about Tom Cruise. (And really, I'm not THAT out-of-touch. I think there must be many like me.) Anyway, I then ordered more books; Marc Headley's, Jenna M's, Janet Reitman's, Jon Atack's -- and plowed through them, becoming more aghast with each page. The whole reality -- slave labor camps? Child slave labor? Prison details that go on for YEARS? A "spiritual leader" who physically assaults people while followers stand around doing nothing? -- just freaks me out -- which may indicate that my life has been a bit fortunate.

Years ago I DID get involved with a sort of wanna-be CO$-style cult: MSIA, led by John-Roger, who I am sure models himself on LRH, but in a much less effective way. They had and I think still have a "personal improvement" series called Insight. I did 3 levels of Insight. In a small way it was based on CO$: staring without blinking, bull-baiting, that kind of exercise...but limited in time and less brutal. However, people DID get sucked into that thing, so I have seen the way it works in a minor fashion. (Ariana Huffington is probably MSIA's most celebrated former member.)

Also, I am a long-time Mormon history buff, though not a Mormon. The thing that fascinated me there is what pulls me in to the CO$ situation: a charismatic con-man forms a religion or practice based on what is to many a clear fraud, but succeeds in attracting followers who will do amazing, and horrifying, things in the name of the founder. CO$ has made the LDS seem rather mild, although I think in the Brigham Young phase the LDS church was guilty of many of the same practices. Cultism in general is something that is at the root of many of the world's problems, and CO$ is a sort of classic case. This means it is useful to study.

It's also a terrible thing, a violation of civil rights and a source of tremendous suffering, and (unlike much going on in the world) it is something that I can help to bring down, maybe.

I've already tried in tiny ways: Tory C. has been wonderful about answering questions, and I have been buying books in bulk and leaving them in public places and libraries. I decided that Marjorie Wakefield's Damaged Lives was a good one, because it's a short and easy read and it's shocking. A person picking it up would be drawn in quickly. The more uninformed people like me who can be brought into the arena, the better. I'm hoping to participate in some pickets in the near future...

OK, that's me. I have a kitty and I like to garden and I recently got a new hip, which is great. And I'm glad to be welcomed and to be here.
 

dchoiceisalwaysrs

Gold Meritorious Patron
Welcome Betskand, It is great to have you here and on Tony O's blog. I do appreciate your care and pro-active approach to education about cults/mind control and the hazards related to them. :thumbsup:
Enjoy your time here.
 

JustSheila

Crusader
CO$ has made the LDS seem rather mild, although I think in the Brigham Young phase the LDS church was guilty of many of the same practices. Cultism in general is something that is at the root of many of the world's problems, and CO$ is a sort of classic case. This means it is useful to study.

It's also a terrible thing, a violation of civil rights and a source of tremendous suffering, and (unlike much going on in the world) it is something that I can help to bring down, maybe.

I've already tried in tiny ways: Tory C. has been wonderful about answering questions, and I have been buying books in bulk and leaving them in public places and libraries. I decided that Marjorie Wakefield's Damaged Lives was a good one, because it's a short and easy read and it's shocking. A person picking it up would be drawn in quickly. The more uninformed people like me who can be brought into the arena, the better. I'm hoping to participate in some pickets in the near future...

OK, that's me. I have a kitty and I like to garden and I recently got a new hip, which is great. And I'm glad to be welcomed and to be here.

Thanks for the intro, Betskand, and thanks as well for all your assistance.

You are so, so WELCOME here. :grouphug:

I spent nearly 9 years in the Sea Org from 1977-1986 and was on a brutal RPF where my 4 year old son was forcibly and illegally taken from me in that time. The Church of Scientology is a vicious cult monster with no respect for others' rights or the law. It depersonalises and dehumanises its members to exclusively serve IT, wasting lives, ambition, years and youth.

I agree with you that cults that manipulate the innocent and naïve and are behind many of the problems of the world. From a society view, it is a travesty of tremendous proportions. All that wasted youth, education, energy, production, ambition and idealism conned and usurped out of them in a misguided con that they are actually helping improve conditions, when in actual fact, they are worsening them.

We have a lot of never-ins on exscn. Personally, I gain more insight from the never-ins than anyone else. Very happy to have you here. :welcome2:
 

Ogsonofgroo

Crusader
:welcome: Bets! I'm another 'Never-waz-in', don't feel out-of-place sortta thingy here, some of the finest folks I have have ever met in my life are right here, really.

:cheers: & a :rose: if yer a wimmens (I suspect you are)

Ogs
 

EP - Ethics Particle

Gold Meritorious Patron
Re my welcome to you on another thread, you wrote:

"...I feel privileged to be here to see and read the experiences of those of you who got out...how you are surviving in the wog world, and so on. It's an experience I can hardly imagine, and I'm filled with admiration for the survivors."

Well, to take a stab at an answer, I don't particularly consider myself a "survivor" of scientology...perhaps 'escapee" would be more apt - but that's not quite right either.

You see, I have always done quite well and successfully in the "wog" world. Always, I pretty much had both feet in the normal wog world while stepping sporadically into the "rabbit hole" of scientology - sometimes with both feet, more often with one foot (less or more) and usually if not always to the mortification of my wife and family.

Probably over the last 5 or so years on this forum I think I have told pretty much my whole story.

Having achieved the biblical "threescore and ten" a couple of years ago, I ccongratulate you on your new hip and hope I do not need one myself for a while. I have a wonderful wife of several decades and we have a house, two dogs, a big yard, grandchildren and like to garden too!

It is cocktail hour here now, so I will sign off with my best wishes!

EP
 

MissWog

Silver Meritorious Patron
:welcome:

great introduction Bets!
I feel like you do.. Something can be done about this and it will take the cooperation of the wog world to make the change..so that's why I am here too..that and these folks are awesome to chat with about $cientology and anything else. I found Tony around 2010 I think and joined here in 2012 after lurking a while..nervous to speak out since this was an ex forum but they all have welcomed me with so much kindness and support.. This place is a ton of fun! So jump in!

Smiles!
Missy
 

Lori

Cheryl E Love
:welcome:Betskand!
I too follow the Bunker, and post as loriisfree.
Pop some popcorn, pull up a chair, and have a seat! It looks like things are really ramping up in Texas and the dwindling spiral the "church" of scientology is on is about to do a nose dive!
:party:
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
:welcome:Betskand!
I too follow the Bunker, and post as loriisfree.
Pop some popcorn, pull up a chair, and have a seat! It looks like things are really ramping up in Texas and the dwindling spiral the "church" of scientology is on is about to do a nose dive!
:party:
Thanks to ALL of you for the welcome!

I am waiting all agog for the next news from Texas. I wrote to my local paper and asked why they weren't covering it...don't know about other places, but it doesn't seem to be news here. Fortunately I've gotten some friends hooked on the whole process and there will now be a little pressure from here to cover it. If it weren't for the Bunker I wouldn't have known about it at all.

The CO$ lawyers are creating such a crazy stew out of the whole thing that it's awfully hard to follow. There is one Texas lawyer on the Bunker who has been "de-coding" the action as it moves along.

I am a total Monique fan. I think that the CO$ had no idea that they were involving themselves with a warrior woman who is not backing down. (That said, I sure hope she doesn't sign any settlement!)

The smiley symbols on this site are DAZZLING! They make me happy just to see them on your postings. This is a very friendly place...which is certainly a pleasant surprise.
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
Hello betskand! :flowers2:

You came on a crazy day! I see you have been checking out this thread - TEXAS JUDGE DENIES SCIENTOLOGY’S ‘ANTI-SLAPP’ MOTION IN RATHBUN SUIT -

I am an ex - and I value the views and posts of never-ins. I have learned a lot from objective and well-read peeps like you (and I am personally a big fan of MissWog).

Welcome! :welcome2:
Thanks, Aeger...I always look for your posts on the Bunker...you say useful things and support good ideas. Glad to get to say a real hello. Just finished reading all the Texas news...WOW! I'm so happy I'm going to bed to pet my cat and have sweet dreams!
 

sallydannce

Gold Meritorious Patron
Welcome to ESMB betskand! :yes:

As an ex I always get a warm fuzzy glow when never-ins sign up [STRIKE]for the duration of the universe[/STRIKE] on ESMB. There is a sense of isolation from mainstream culture when one first leaves the cult and it is very valuable to mix with people from all walks of life. Imo, this is also applicable on ESMB. Things can get a little circular when ex's only hang out with ex's - zero disrespect intended towards ex's cos I know how damn hard we work to integrate back into the world.

So terrific to have you here betskand!

Now about you joining the ESMB Choir...oh yeah we have our very own choir. :wink2:

We are currently working on songs with a Texan theme, sub-titled "songs of adoration for Texan Judges". :biggrin:
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
:welcome: Bets! I'm another 'Never-waz-in', don't feel out-of-place sortta thingy here, some of the finest folks I have have ever met in my life are right here, really.

:cheers: & a :rose: if yer a wimmens (I suspect you are)

Ogs
You're right, I'm a wimmens, and we wimmenses love roses -- at least this ol' wimmens does...that was nice!
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
Welcome to ESMB betskand! :yes:

As an ex I always get a warm fuzzy glow when never-ins sign up [STRIKE]for the duration of the universe[/STRIKE] on ESMB. There is a sense of isolation from mainstream culture when one first leaves the cult and it is very valuable to mix with people from all walks of life. Imo, this is also applicable on ESMB. Things can get a little circular when ex's only hang out with ex's - zero disrespect intended towards ex's cos I know how damn hard we work to integrate back into the world.

So terrific to have you here betskand!

Now about you joining the ESMB Choir...oh yeah we have our very own choir. :wink2:

We are currently working on songs with a Texan theme, sub-titled "songs of adoration for Texan Judges". :biggrin:
Oh, a choir! Does it matter that I sound like a dying bullfrog? Adoration is just what I want to send to a specific Texan judge tonight.
 

TG1

Angelic Poster
Hi, Bets.

Welcome to ESMB. I hope you enjoy yourself here.

I agree with Ogsonofgroo. It's a great group.

BTW, I'm a long-time ex. Doing great. :)

TG1
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
Thanks for the intro, Betskand, and thanks as well for all your assistance.

You are so, so WELCOME here. :grouphug:

I spent nearly 9 years in the Sea Org from 1977-1986 and was on a brutal RPF where my 4 year old son was forcibly and illegally taken from me in that time. The Church of Scientology is a vicious cult monster with no respect for others' rights or the law. It depersonalises and dehumanises its members to exclusively serve IT, wasting lives, ambition, years and youth.

I agree with you that cults that manipulate the innocent and naïve and are behind many of the problems of the world. From a society view, it is a travesty of tremendous proportions. All that wasted youth, education, energy, production, ambition and idealism conned and usurped out of them in a misguided con that they are actually helping improve conditions, when in actual fact, they are worsening them.

We have a lot of never-ins on exscn. Personally, I gain more insight from the never-ins than anyone else. Very happy to have you here. :welcome2:
Boy...after all I've been learning about the SeaOrg and RPF (all from reading books and seeing things here and on the Bunker) I'm actually kind of dazzled, and sad, to meet a genuine escapee. The family stuff is just HORRIBLE. Your story makes my heart hurt, and I'm sure the details are more painful than I can imagine. The idea of a "religion" that does these things to people...I'm sure you've read yesterday's Tampa article by Joe Child about the Goldberg family...why? Why? Why? How can the people behind these things justify to themselves the demand that a mother or sibling cut off from a family member? What on earth logic could be behind that?

I recently saw a documentary about the Amish. It's true that they have a sort of disconnection policy, but...they continue to set a place at the table for the person who is gone. And the person can come back, or visit (although the visits may be difficult.) The religious angle may be extreme, but there is some humanity behind it...some remnant of understanding that relationships are precious to people and that families matter. In CO$ it seems to come straight out of that malignant narcissism that allowed Elron to use and discard people without a thought.

It must be hard, hard, hard to move out of the bitter knowledge that liers have taken years of one's life and relationships that can't be replaced. The fact that many of you ARE living and communicating in the wog world is inspiring to me...I want to understand more how people access the strength to do that.

Thanks so much for allowing me to glimpse your experience...
 

betskand

Patron with Honors
Re my welcome to you on another thread, you wrote:

"...I feel privileged to be here to see and read the experiences of those of you who got out...how you are surviving in the wog world, and so on. It's an experience I can hardly imagine, and I'm filled with admiration for the survivors."

Well, to take a stab at an answer, I don't particularly consider myself a "survivor" of scientology...perhaps 'escapee" would be more apt - but that's not quite right either.

You see, I have always done quite well and successfully in the "wog" world. Always, I pretty much had both feet in the normal wog world while stepping sporadically into the "rabbit hole" of scientology - sometimes with both feet, more often with one foot (less or more) and usually if not always to the mortification of my wife and family.

Probably over the last 5 or so years on this forum I think I have told pretty much my whole story.

Having achieved the biblical "threescore and ten" a couple of years ago, I ccongratulate you on your new hip and hope I do not need one myself for a while. I have a wonderful wife of several decades and we have a house, two dogs, a big yard, grandchildren and like to garden too!

It is cocktail hour here now, so I will sign off with my best wishes!

EP
I congratulate you on your threescore and ten! I'm threescore and 4...
Should you (and I hope not) or a loved NEED a new hip, I am the one to ask about it. One month after surgery, I can walk 2 miles, drive, and have no pain! (In fact I had a special operation and was able to climb stairs 24 hours after surgery.) Sorry to go on about it! A new hip can be almost as entrancing as a new baby. Well, in a slightly different way. You don't have to potty-train a hip.
 
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