Regaining My Love of Sci-Fi after Hubbard's Scientology Killed It

JustSheila

Crusader
I've been sort of hanging around today, laughing at posters wittier than me, going to the big Emma's birthday party ESMB online bash here (HI Emma! :happybirthday: :wave::)), but still nagging in the back of my mind was how Hubbard killed something I had immensely enjoyed, that had brought so much mystery, wonderment, and awe to my life:

Hubbard Killed My Love of Science Fiction.

My diet of sci-fi and fantasy started about when I was 6 years old. Isaac Asimov and Robert A Heinlein's books just blew me away. They were amazing, and here was this man Hubbard who - wow - well, he made Asimov's education and achievements sound like a cereal box certificate next to the Nobel Prize!

Since I was a child, if I wanted to relax, there was sci-fi. And just before bed was my favourite time, because then my brain entered that place where I could dream and imagine, thinking "what-if" and "wouldn't it be cool if" sort of things. During the day, there was, well, just living and loving life.

Sci-fi was part of dreams. Living was reality. Life was simple, it made sense -as long as fantasy and reality were separated this way, I was happy and normal. I loved Sci-fi and life, too.

So now, after going through the "is there anything about scn that works" phase of exdom and the "how much has scn really f'ed up my way of thinking" phase and the "get everything, anything and everyon who ever had anything to do with scn away from me" phase and the "who am I really then?" phase (not necessarily in that order), I discovered a new one.

Scientology brainwashes. It puts one in a semi-daze during waking hours (lack of sleep and good nutrition with mega-hours of work help it along) which makes one daydream. It tell yous all your dreams were real, and what was real (family, friends, upbringing) was not.

So now, I only think of sci-fi at night. During the day, I LIVE. Strange as it sounds, it really straightened out my brain waves. Back to pre-Scientology. I feet CONNECTED again - whole. Completely ME.

This may sound weird, but for me, that's become what seems to be the last hurdle of recovering from scientology. It's kind of hard to explain so I hope someone else here can relate to this or something similar.
 

Student of Trinity

Silver Meritorious Patron
I'm sorry to hear that Scientology killed any source of enjoyment, but it certainly didn't kill science fiction itself. It couldn't have, because it was never big enough, nor was Hubbard. The only enduring trace of L. Ron Hubbard in science fiction, as far as I can see, is a couple of few-word references to Scientology in some of William Gibson's novels.

There's been a lot of really interesting stuff written since Hubbard's day. Off the top of my head: Neuromancer, by Gibson; A Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge; or, if you want to see what space opera is like when it grows up, Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan series.
 

Alle G

Patron with Honors
Posted by JustSheila
…………………………………………………………………
Scientology brainwashes. It puts one in a semi-daze during waking hours (lack of sleep and good nutrition with mega-hours of work help it along) which makes one daydream. It tell yous all your dreams were real, and what was real (family, friends, upbringing) was not.

So now, I only think of sci-fi at night. During the day, I LIVE. Strange as it sounds, it really straightened out my brain waves. Back to pre-Scientology. I feet CONNECTED again - whole. Completely ME.

I read many times that people ‘wake up’ from scientology as if they were asleep and scientology is a collective dream. Is scientology really a separate reality, a parallel universe, where people live parallel lives?
While inside the dream they are convinced it is real until they wake up?
 

Dulloldfart

Squirrel Extraordinaire
Alle G — Often, yes, horrible as it is to admit it. It's not quite as black and white as that, but after one has "come out of it" it's really not that far off the reality of it.

Paul
 

SchwimmelPuckel

Genuine Meatball
<snip> Hubbard Killed My Love of Science Fiction. </snip>
Don't let that imbecile idiot do that! - Hubturd certainly 'sullied' the litetrary genre, but he sure as hell didn't kill it. Hubturd was, as I gather, a fairly good writer before he went nutz with the religion stuff. He was never as good as Heinlein, Asimov or Clarke. Their stories are still worth reading.

Curiously, the exactly opposite happened for me. When I quit Scientology I started reading Science Fiction in english. I never stopped.. I really enjoy fantasy and speculation that don't pretend to be anything else.

:yes:
 

clamicide

Gold Meritorious Patron
Interesting... I hadn't realized that I went through something similar until you mentioned it. I just kind of went "blech" on it all. It just was reminders of the obsession with space opera. I kept reading fantasy, but nothing to do with sci fi at all. When I was 'on break' from Scio (not active) is when I read most of my sci-fi. Once I got back in, and then out, I really did drop it. Sad.

I was sitting here thinking I might actually watch Star Wars again when I came across this post... been a while. I spent the Thanksgiving before last marathon-watching Battlestar Galactica... and I realize that I did start picking up Heinlein and some other writers finally, a year or two ago. But, I had a blackout period where I let nothing resembling science fiction anywhere near me. Had no idea I'd done that until I saw your post.
 

Queenmab321

Patron Meritorious
If you've never read Ursula Le Guin's The Dispossessed, I highly recommend it. It's marvelously sane.
 

Smurf

Gold Meritorious SP
Cool. Then, you'll enjoy Fox New pundit Bill O'Reilly's book on "Killing Jesus". O'Reilly, who's always reminding viewers that he's a "good Catholic", writes that Jesus didn't die for our sins, but in protest over Roman taxes...dismissing all the supernatural, space opera yarn surrounding about is dying for our sins & ascending to heaven. :)

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/09/27/gospel-according-to-bill-oreilly-jesus-died-for-your-taxes/

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/...ays-Jesus-died-to-free-the-Jews-from-taxation
 

Enthetan

Master of Disaster
If you've never read Ursula Le Guin's The Dispossessed, I highly recommend it. It's marvelously sane.

Her short-story collection "The Wind's Twelve Quarters" was one of my favorites back in college.

Over the years, I've grown to like Anne McCaffrey, Fred Saberhagen, Jerry Pournelle, Larry Niven, David Drake, John Ringo, and Tom Krattman.

[video=youtube;7cVOOXQo22o]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7cVOOXQo22o#t=16[/video]
 

clamicide

Gold Meritorious Patron
Her short-story collection "The Wind's Twelve Quarters" was one of my favorites back in college.

Over the years, I've grown to like Anne McCaffrey, Fred Saberhagen, Jerry Pournelle, Larry Niven, David Drake, John Ringo, and Tom Krattman.

[video=youtube;7cVOOXQo22o]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7cVOOXQo22o#t=16[/video]

I've spent a lot of time with Pournelle, Niven and Saberhagen... and I adore the hell out of Dan Simmons and his Hyperion and the series he did that is a riff on the Iliad.
 

DoneDeal

Patron Meritorious
Adam Selene will help. And he tells good jokes too, sorta. Or was that Mike? hmm, I gotta read it again I guess. lol.
 

scooter

Gold Meritorious Patron
Know what you mean, Sheila - I gave up SF for a while after I left the cult.

Orson Scott Card and Kim Stanley Robinson are currently two of my favourites. I got a lot of my old SF collection out of our shed some months back and started reading them again.

Yes there were Asimov, Heinlien, Pournelle, Niven and so many more in those boxes. I'm even hunting down "new" writers in our local libraries to try out.

(btw, love your new avatar - the Long-bills up here are nesting at the moment and fly over the house regularly in pairs instead of the usual flock.)
 

120 Degrees

Patron with Honors
I love the classic authors you've all mentioned....but come on, page two of this thread and no mention of Dan Simmons? Flunk.
 

120 Degrees

Patron with Honors
uh.... I brought up Dan Simmons. I've read Hyperion 4 times or so... just saying. :coolwink:

Totally my bad!:hide: I really couldn't believe he hadn't been mentioned. He's the best! I'm so happy to hear about people regaining the joy they had in things prior to Scientology. I also should have put the winking smiley in my post. Winking is hard to detect over the internet.
 

clamicide

Gold Meritorious Patron
Totally my bad!:hide: I really couldn't believe he hadn't been mentioned. He's the best! I'm so happy to hear about people regaining the joy they had in things prior to Scientology. I also should have put the winking smiley in my post. Winking is hard to detect over the internet.

lol... no need to hide under a chair... seriously, the more times Dan Simmons is mentioned, means more folks might discover him. There are parts of Hyperion that seriously haunt me.
 

JustSheila

Crusader
WOW! :wow: !!!

You all have made some amazing recommendations - should last me at least a year! You know what, I started reading sci-fantasy again just today. No kidding.

I found an old book in a used book store called, "The Giant Book of Fantasy All Time Greats", originally published in 1983 - this is the 1997 reprint. It has short stories by H. P. Lovecraft, Robert Bloch, Theodore Sturgeon, Fritz Leiber... the all star list seems almost endless. Just read Theodore Sturgeon's, "The Silken Swift" and his writing just blows my mind.

There was another point to what I was saying, and that was that my brain sleep cyles got a bit crossed up between the sleep/wake modes when L Ron insisted sci-fi was reality. It really happened - and I'm just now figuring out the cause of my sleep problem.

Without sleep aids, I wake up about every 3-4 hours and many nights don't hit deep sleep at all. IF I get a good night's sleep (and this takes a lot of work, from exercise to eliminating alcohol & caffeine, sometimes drinking chamomile tea, other nights, taking natural sleep aids, other nights taking natural anxiety aids), then I'm bright and fully aware & awake the next day.

But if not, my imagination goes OFF at night and just continues on - just somewhat less so - during the day. It's melatonin or adenosine or something out of whack. Oh, trying to figure out what came first is like the chicken or the egg. Scientology wrecked it when it made scifi seem REAL and it wrecked my using it to dream.

So I'm taking my love of scifi BACK!

Scifi and fantasy work for me. They always have - when they were kept in their place, that is - the imagination realm.

I'm in pretty good shape today, slept solid, but I took one of those sleep aids and I have to use those sparingly because it only takes a few weeks of regular use to become dependent on them and develop a tolerance so they don't work anymore. And I hate codeine - it gives me the worst quality sleep and I wake up tired.

So hopefully, the sci-fi will get me to sleep tonight.

Thank you all! MORE recommendations, please!:biggrin:
 
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clamicide

Gold Meritorious Patron
WOW! :wow: !!!

You all have made some amazing recommendations - should last me at least a year! You know what, I started reading sci-fantasy again just today. No kidding.

I found an old book in a used book store called, "The Giant Book of Fantasy All Time Greats", originally published in 1983 - this is the 1997 reprint. It has short stories by H. P. Lovecraft, Robert Bloch, Theodore Sturgeon, Fritz Leiber... the all star list seems almost endless. Just read Theodore Sturgeon's, "The Silken Swift" and his writing just blows my mind.

There was another point to what I was saying, and that was that my brain sleep cyles got a bit crossed up between the sleep/wake modes when L Ron insisted sci-fi was reality. It really happened - and I'm just now figuring out the cause of my sleep problem.

Without sleep aids, I wake up about every 3-4 hours and many nights don't hit deep sleep at all. IF I get a good night's sleep (and this takes a lot of work, from exercise to eliminating alcohol & caffeine, sometimes drinking chamomile tea, other nights, taking natural sleep aids, other nights taking natural anxiety aids), then I'm bright and fully aware & awake the next day.

But if not, my imagination goes OFF at night and just continues on - just somewhat less so - during the day. It's melatonin or adenosine or something out of whack. Oh, trying to figure out what came first is like the chicken or the egg. Scientology wrecked it when it made scifi seem REAL and it wrecked my using it to dream.

So I'm taking my love of scifi BACK!

Scifi and fantasy work for me. They always have - when they were kept in their place, that is - the imagination realm.

I'm in pretty good shape today, slept solid, but I took one of those sleep aids and I have to use those sparingly because it only takes a few weeks of regular use to become dependent on them and develop a tolerance so they don't work anymore. And I hate codeine - it gives me the worst quality sleep and I wake up tired.

So hopefully, the sci-fi will get me to sleep tonight.

Thank you all! MORE recommendations, please!:biggrin:

This is very interesting. Telling someone what your brain goes through when you don't get sleep, to me, is similar to trying to describe what cult-life is to someone who thinks it's inane. I'll see what I can come up with... I always was on a different time-clock than the rest of where I lived, even as a child, but it seriously did not come to be the huge problem until I wound up in the cult. I'm going to ponder that with what you've said.
 

120 Degrees

Patron with Honors
Some other suggestions that I love:
Ian M. Banks - smart SciFi
Neil Gaiman (an ex) - American God's is a modern 'classic'
David Gerrold
Stanislaw Lem
Theodore Sturgeon
Jack Vance
Gene Wolfe
Jack Williamson
Philip Jose Farmer
Frederick Pohl - classic SciFi but still fun
 

120 Degrees

Patron with Honors
lol... no need to hide under a chair... seriously, the more times Dan Simmons is mentioned, means more folks might discover him. There are parts of Hyperion that seriously haunt me.

Totally agree. The more people know about him the better. Yup, the Shrike and other things from this series are completely haunting.
 
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