Scientologist being interviewed by Reddit readers...

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/tellusofyou..._a_scientologist_but_wasnt_raised_in_it_amaa/


A Scientologist is doing an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit right now. Reddit users can ask anything. wd40isthebest is the Scientologist btw.
What the fuck was Scientology thinking? Doing a live Interview on Reddit, and let users ask anything? When the Xenu questions started coming, he was G-O-N-E!

Q:What are your core beliefs regarding God, after life, spirituality, praying, etc.
A:
God and prayer are separate things, not really a part of Scientology, in my opinion. A lot of Scientologists that I know are Jewish and Christian as well as Scientologists, so they adhere to their respective faiths in that regard. As far as spirituality and the afterlife, I believe in past lives, and that the true self is immortal. In the book Fundamentals of Thought, LRH talks about the 3 parts of man, and how this relates to spirituality.

Q:
belief =/= fact. i just did some googling and the #1 definition of a religion is "the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, esp. a personal God or gods."you've read lrh's writings, you must know about thetans -- do you not believe in them? spiritually, you don't believe in scientology's account of the universe?
A: "Thetan" is just a fancy name for you. Its what you are, its the basic personality of a person. How can I not believe in me? I don't think that's possible, to be honest. I think you believe in you as well. Who else typed your comment?

I only believe in what I observe to be true. If I cannot experience it for myself, then I can never say for certain if it is true. I highly recommend this way of thinking, I think it is very logical.

Q: what is the structure of the church?
A: An auditor is defined most basically as "one who listens". Auditors are those who deliver Scientology services to parishioners. The auditor and the parishioner work together to help the parishioner and improve his life. This is the basic structure, in my opinion.

Q: How much, if any, research did you do into Scientology before trying it out? Have any family members or friends been uncomfortable with your association with the group?
A: I was actually really nervous about it at first, as I had heard some negative things. I did tons of research on the internet, but I found only opinions and subjective stories with heavy bias, nothing really useful. Anyone proficient in research knows that the most valuable documents are primary sources, those written at the time period by someone who was actually there. So, I actually ordered all of the basic books of Scientology off of amazon, and got to reading. I had read 11 out of the 18 basic books before I ever set foot in a Scientology church. The claims that this guy, L. Ron Hubbard, was making I thought were absolutely incredible. Like "in - credible", as in not likely to be true. But I said to myself, well, I started this journey looking for something, I may as well finish it. So I decided I had to experience some of this stuff for myself. I decided to walk into my local organization and try some of their stuff. And, what do you know, I found that the stuff actually works. Some of my family members were a little apprehensive about my being involved Scientology, but once I was able to explain what exactly it is and how it helps people, everything was fine and they understood. The principles in Scientology are actually very agreeable to most people. The problems start when people stop looking at things for themselves and trust others to do the looking for them.

Q: You said you wanted to answer people's questions. You lied. You didn't answer any of his questions. There is no way bonebride can investigate his questions if you won't answer them. No matter what investigation he makes, he can't tell if you believe in Xenu unless you tell him.
A: bye bye :)

Q: well how are people supposed to get any proper personal investigation done with the amount of misinformation and propaganda scientology perpetuates (even here, in this misguided AMA)?

i really recommend you read Wright's book, or really even the controversies page on the Scientology wikipedia, and I hope you withdraw now before your involvement becomes too deep.
A: bye bye :)

Q: What are your opinions on Scientology's "pay to progress" model of spiritual evolution?
A: I couldn't agree with it more. How else would it be done? By tithing? I don't think so. Its like when I was in martial arts. You pay for the training you are getting in the martial arts, and as you get better and better your belt color increases. You keep paying for martial arts training, and you keep getting better and you become a better and better fighter. The Scientology system is just like that. It is the most fair way, to both the organization and the parishioner.

Q: Is Xenu part of the advanced teaching of Scientology?
A: I have honestly never seen anything about Xenu or any alien stuff. Believe me, I would tell you if I had. And I have read A LOT of LRH's stuff. I heard that story before I did my investigation into the Church, and though I haven't read EVERY SINGLE word written by him, I feel that I have read enough to be certain that that is not what Scientology is about. At all.

Q: Church's 'scripture' about Xenu and the history of the Thetan has historically been reserved for OT 3 and up. You haven't been told yet and they are very eager to keep that stuff hush-hush because it'd dry up the money supply.

"The story of Xenu is covered in OT III, part of Scientology's secret "Advanced Technology" doctrines taught only to advanced members who have undergone many hours of auditing and reached the state of Clear followed by Operating Thetan levels 1 and 2." from Xenu's wikipedia page. This particular copy and paste was sourced twice. LRH wrote it himself.
A: No reply, and left the room...



 

Reasonable

Silver Meritorious Patron
What level did he say he was?

If he did not do OT3 then he was not lying, he probably did not know.

If he did OT3 then he is lying.

I would have like to have known where he was on the bridge
 

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
What level did he say he was?

If he did not do OT3 then he was not lying, he probably did not know.

If he did OT3 then he is lying.

I would have like to have known where he was on the bridge

He is an member for 2 years now, so he is not high on the bridge.
 

Churchill

Gold Meritorious Patron
Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/tellusofyou..._a_scientologist_but_wasnt_raised_in_it_amaa/


A Scientologist is doing an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit right now. Reddit users can ask anything. wd40isthebest is the Scientologist btw.
What the fuck was Scientology thinking? Doing a live Interview on Reddit, and let users ask anything? When the Xenu questions started coming, he was G-O-N-E!

Q:What are your core beliefs regarding God, after life, spirituality, praying, etc.
A:
God and prayer are separate things, not really a part of Scientology, in my opinion. A lot of Scientologists that I know are Jewish and Christian as well as Scientologists, so they adhere to their respective faiths in that regard. As far as spirituality and the afterlife, I believe in past lives, and that the true self is immortal. In the book Fundamentals of Thought, LRH talks about the 3 parts of man, and how this relates to spirituality.

Q:
belief =/= fact. i just did some googling and the #1 definition of a religion is "the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, esp. a personal God or gods."you've read lrh's writings, you must know about thetans -- do you not believe in them? spiritually, you don't believe in scientology's account of the universe?
A: "Thetan" is just a fancy name for you. Its what you are, its the basic personality of a person. How can I not believe in me? I don't think that's possible, to be honest. I think you believe in you as well. Who else typed your comment?

I only believe in what I observe to be true. If I cannot experience it for myself, then I can never say for certain if it is true. I highly recommend this way of thinking, I think it is very logical.

Q: what is the structure of the church?
A: An auditor is defined most basically as "one who listens". Auditors are those who deliver Scientology services to parishioners. The auditor and the parishioner work together to help the parishioner and improve his life. This is the basic structure, in my opinion.

Q: How much, if any, research did you do into Scientology before trying it out? Have any family members or friends been uncomfortable with your association with the group?
A: I was actually really nervous about it at first, as I had heard some negative things. I did tons of research on the internet, but I found only opinions and subjective stories with heavy bias, nothing really useful. Anyone proficient in research knows that the most valuable documents are primary sources, those written at the time period by someone who was actually there. So, I actually ordered all of the basic books of Scientology off of amazon, and got to reading. I had read 11 out of the 18 basic books before I ever set foot in a Scientology church. The claims that this guy, L. Ron Hubbard, was making I thought were absolutely incredible. Like "in - credible", as in not likely to be true. But I said to myself, well, I started this journey looking for something, I may as well finish it. So I decided I had to experience some of this stuff for myself. I decided to walk into my local organization and try some of their stuff. And, what do you know, I found that the stuff actually works. Some of my family members were a little apprehensive about my being involved Scientology, but once I was able to explain what exactly it is and how it helps people, everything was fine and they understood. The principles in Scientology are actually very agreeable to most people. The problems start when people stop looking at things for themselves and trust others to do the looking for them.

Q: You said you wanted to answer people's questions. You lied. You didn't answer any of his questions. There is no way bonebride can investigate his questions if you won't answer them. No matter what investigation he makes, he can't tell if you believe in Xenu unless you tell him.
A: bye bye :)

Q: well how are people supposed to get any proper personal investigation done with the amount of misinformation and propaganda scientology perpetuates (even here, in this misguided AMA)?

i really recommend you read Wright's book, or really even the controversies page on the Scientology wikipedia, and I hope you withdraw now before your involvement becomes too deep.
A: bye bye :)

Q: What are your opinions on Scientology's "pay to progress" model of spiritual evolution?
A: I couldn't agree with it more. How else would it be done? By tithing? I don't think so. Its like when I was in martial arts. You pay for the training you are getting in the martial arts, and as you get better and better your belt color increases. You keep paying for martial arts training, and you keep getting better and you become a better and better fighter. The Scientology system is just like that. It is the most fair way, to both the organization and the parishioner.

Q: Is Xenu part of the advanced teaching of Scientology?
A: I have honestly never seen anything about Xenu or any alien stuff. Believe me, I would tell you if I had. And I have read A LOT of LRH's stuff. I heard that story before I did my investigation into the Church, and though I haven't read EVERY SINGLE word written by him, I feel that I have read enough to be certain that that is not what Scientology is about. At all.

Q: Church's 'scripture' about Xenu and the history of the Thetan has historically been reserved for OT 3 and up. You haven't been told yet and they are very eager to keep that stuff hush-hush because it'd dry up the money supply.

"The story of Xenu is covered in OT III, part of Scientology's secret "Advanced Technology" doctrines taught only to advanced members who have undergone many hours of auditing and reached the state of Clear followed by Operating Thetan levels 1 and 2." from Xenu's wikipedia page. This particular copy and paste was sourced twice. LRH wrote it himself.
A: No reply, and left the room...


Tommy Davis never seems to learn, does he?
 

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
LOL! I like the questions he didn't answer.... Why did Scientology think this was a good idea?

Q: So is everybody a thetan, or some kind of different spirit with clusters of thetans attached to them?

Q:
Have you seen and do you have any thoughts on Paul Thomas Anderson's "The Master?" (Loosely based on L.R.H.)

Q:
Whatever happened between LRH and Jack Parsons?

Q:
What are your thought's on Monique Rathbun's harassment lawsuit against the Church of Scientology?I have a link to the background here: http://tonyortega.org/2013/10/19/scientology-drops-a-bomb-on-monique-rathbun-harassment-lawsuit/
Now perhaps that site is biased, or "entheta". However, you can confirm what it says by looking at the primary source document attached on the last page. In that document, the "Church of Scientology International" (as opposed to RTC) ADMITS (yes it does, read it) that it sent a team of scientologists and private detectives to stand outside of Marty Rathbun's house and follow him wherever he went. This lasted 199 consecutive days! Marty Rathbun's "crime" was to deliver auditing outside of the official church. Shouldn't a marginalized new religious movement like Scientology respect others religious freedom? What gives them the right to harass someone for practicing his religion in his own way.
I really hope you answer this, as I am not attacking your beliefs, nor am I attacking your "wins". I am merely criticizing the BEHAVIOR of the organization.

Q: what do you think of operation snow white? Where Hubbard's wife and and several other scientologists were convicted of breaking into IRS offices and stealing documents? And it was proven that they did not do so on their own, it was an actual church sanctioned op.

Do you know about operation freakout?
what are your feelings about "fair game"

Q: What do you think about the repeated accusations of physical abuse and mistreatment by COB and the higher-ups within the church?

Q: Have you read any investigative literature on Scientology? Lawrence Wright's Going Clear was published in 2013 and really painted a full picture for me of the history of the Church.

I have a few questions for you:

  1. How did you feel about Scientology before you joined the church?
  2. What level OT are you?
  3. Do you believe in Xenu and the Galactic Confederacy?
  4. How do you feel about the fact that a true Clear has never, actually, been produced?
  5. How do you feel about the church's well-publicized practices of bankrupting any "SP"s (suppressive persons) who speak up against it?
  6. Do you believe you will get super human powers once you reach a higher OT Level?
edit: OP's only been in the church for 2 years and obviously hasn't been audited enough to advance to an OT level high enough to be able to answer any questions. Maybe after he spends a few thousand more dollars he'll be told about Xenu.
 

thewritegoddess

Patron with Honors
Well, it's called an "Ask Me Anything," not "I Will Actually Answer." This smacks of desperation. I'm surprised it lasted as long as it did. I can't believe them when they say they've only been a member for two years and researched online before joining. It's obviously a lie. No one doing internet research in the last TWENTY years would join Scientology after reading up on it!
 

Chris Shelton

Patron with Honors
This was interesting. Either someone acted totally on their own or it was some kind of oddball OSA PR thing. I actually think it would be the first option before the second, because I don't think OSA would fail to predict that these kinds of questions and "attacks" would come at the guy so fast and they know that they have no defense for it. The only thing they can and will do in the face of these kinds of questions is shut down and leave. And they would know for sure that this would happen on an open, anonymous forum.

A naive individual in the Church might not actually know, since he hasn't been looking at any of the blogs or sights he should be, i.e. this one, Tony's, Mike's, Marty's, etc.

If he's a good Scientologist and he just felt that he wanted to step up and "do something" to make Scientology better known in the world, I could see him doing something like this. It can be pretty frustrating to be a Scientologist and not see any substantial good news about Scientology on the internet. I used to wonder about it often before I took the plunge and started looking at the "bad stuff". Then I stopped wondering and stared packing my bags and getting the hell out.

I'm also sure that by now he has gotten himself into a whole mess of trouble for doing this. I'm sure KRs have been written by now and men with meters have taken him into a quiet, enclosed space with orders to find out what his crimes are and who he has been talking to that encouraged him to do this. And hopefully that will set off more alarm bells to him and get him actually looking at what this organization is really all about.
 

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
Someone else did an AMA about 8 months ago:
Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1dd237/

Q: I'm poor and mentally ill, but would like to learn everything about the faith. Do I have any reason to be terrifiedconcerned about Scientology, and will I be treated as an equal?
A:
No you have no reason to be afraid, and yes you will be treated as an equal. There is no cost to coming in and there is plenty to learn. Also your local lending library has all of our basic books. There is no better way to learn Scientology than to ready some of the 18 basic books. People that have read them can speak with intelligence on the subject. People that haven't just have no clue.

Q:
what kinds of people are in your chirch
A:
Every type of person imaginable, except for complete criminals. They couldn't last very long

Q:
What are your biggest criticisms of the church? Do you wish there's something they did better?
A:
In the 70s And 80s the were some very criminal people on legal affairs posts. They got royally removed shortly after they were found, but they caused so much trouble for the church at the time it is unreal. In present time, I don't really have any criticisms of management as I know it

Q:
Are you referring to Snow White? Because Hubbard himself was involved in that (officially an "unindicted co-conspirator") and he certainly wasn't "royally removed". A number of the officially indicted parties also maintained posts with CoS.
A:
Not so much that, because that was a bad idea gone very wrong. I mean, that involves more blatant criminal acts. People went to jail.In present time, those guilty and sentenced and also those found to be involved are all from their positions. I wasn't around then, so it's not like I have some inside skinny. I know that the people I work with are honest people and we don't do those types of things.

Q: Have you seen South Park's episode about Scientology? If so, what did you think?
A: I am a fan of South Park, have always been. It did not change my view on South Park. I found it so unreal, like so far from reality of Scientology, that I didn't get offended. I also didn't get that Trey and Matt felt too much antagonism for Scientology. I also sat there and watched them rag on other religions for season after season and was kind of like, "well, that had to have been coming."

Q: What happened to Shelly Miscavige? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shelly_Miscavige
A: I have no data for you on that, sorry. I never even knew her

Q: Why did you become a scientologist? Do you actually believe what you are teaching?
A: The first thing I did was an auditing session and I had just lost a job and was in a totally angry frame of mind over it. I 30 minutes of auditing I spotted the source of the whole problem and came out feeling 10 pounds lighter. The next hour a guy randomly called me from the work apologizing and the whole thing was totally resolved.

I read some of the books (I read a lot). By the time I read the book Science of Survival, which talks about the characters tics of human behavior and how people at different emotional levels act, I did some auditing on people and saw some great results.

Q: How many deities are worshiped and what is their origin?
A: There are no deities worshipped per se. There is no worshipping. Scientology is only a philosophy which is between you and yourself. There are no rituals of worship which make it unlike any other church

Q: how much money have you spent on audits and technology?
A: I've spent in my life about $9,000 for training, I then audited with another person because I was trained. That training took about a year. I have donated to the International Association of Scientologists another $25k.

I am a staff member so don't pay for any auditing or technology now

Q: Wow, scientology is such a scam. I have never heard of a religion charging even hundreds of dollars for training.

How do you feel about Tom Cruise buying his way to the third highest position in scientology?
A: Source that he is the 3rd heist position?

Q: Being a "Staff member" (whatever that means), how much time do you volunteer a week? Out of that, how much time do you think you are actually required? Also, what can be the repercussions if you are not able to give the church the minimum amount of time it requires?
A: I am sea org so it's a full-time activity, maybe 50-60 work hours a week and then study and training

Q: Do you get paid for this? You must, how would you work a job otherwise ?
A: If you a standard 40 hour a week staff member, and you can't give the time needed, in some cases there will be exceptions based on your situation. For me, I am full-time and only unless I am sick, injured (which have happened) or if some family emergency is occurring do I miss time unexpectedly.

Q: What do you think of the popular perception of Scientology as extremely cult-ish? How is it inaccurate?
A: That it is secretive is incorrect. You can walk in in the next hour, walk up to the library and sit down and read everything LRH wrote from the basics of auditing to the theory of matter, energy, space and time and to how the incoming donations are supposed to be handled.

That you have to shut off everything from your life is incorrect. That you have to disconnect from family is incorrect. I've never felt so comfortable in a group in my life.

Q: That it is secretive is incorrect. You can walk in in the next hour, walk up to the library and sit down and read everything LRH wrote from the basics of auditing to the theory of matter, energy, space and time and to how the incoming donations are supposed to be handled.

But you say in another answer that "About 1-2% of Scientology materials are confidential until you reach that level. I have." Clearly one of these two statements is false.
A: Yes all materials would be an incorrect statement, as 1-2% would not be in there show you enter in the next hour

Q: Thoughts on the recent book Going Clear by Lawrence Wright?

Would you agree that scientology is essentially a cargo cult? Meaning that it tries to obtain the cachet of science by appropriating certain words and using fancy-looking devices but that it really has no appreciation for the scientific method.
A: I'll take your second question first. There are lectures from 1952 where l Ron Hubbard talks about the scientific method, inductive-deductive reasoning and how he used it to form what are the basic principles of Dianetics, which led to Scientology. I've worked in technology for years and I can tell you that absolutely the scientific method was used in his initial research. The words need to be learned in Scientology, yes. However that doesn't take very long I get a basic understanding and it is quite simple.

Although I will saw if someone is not literate there is not much they can travel in Scientology until they improve that. Some of the materials had me slogging through form hours and buried in dictionaries.
Lawrence Wright's book I felt was very poorly researched. If I was a professor in a university and knew what I knew about Scientology and he submitted that, I would have him review some LRH materials. I also found him to be fixated on Tom Cruise and yet he never even met the dude. And facts like "$300,000 to go Clear" are totally unsubstantiated. He's confusing Scientologists making free and clear donations.

Q: Do you really think that the scientific method is compatible with scientology? There are some very obvious problems:


  • Replicability - a key component of the scientific method is that results need to be replicable by a number of different people, yet scientology persecutes people who attempt to apply their technology without going through the church
  • Secrecy - How can results be evaluated if they are kept secret?
  • Trust - Given the Church of Scientology's selective editing of Hubbard's work, can we really trust that what the church says is actually true?
  • Certainty - is the level of faith put into one individual really compatible with a scientific viewpoint that sees individuals as inherently fallible and paradigms inevitably subject to change?
As for the Wright book, do you dispute the claims that he makes about the Church of Scientology: for instance its abusive labor practices, its imprisonment and purging of top officials, physical abuse by Miscavige, etc? I fail to understand why it would be important for Wright to have met Cruise. Surely many excellent books have been written about people who the author never met - for instance all biographies of people who are deceased.
From my reading of the book I felt that Wright demonstrated familiarity with Hubbard's ideas and teachings. Are there specific examples you can point to that would demonstrate that Wright didn't understand Hubbard?
A: I believe that the principles of Dianetics of Scientology conform, yes.

Replicability - the church persecutes those who ALTER the principles. If you are following them even in a private practice and don't wish to work for the church, you can obtain a Field Auditors license. If you don't wish to associate with the church corporately, you can still practice at your own discretion but you will not be able to legally charge money for what you do. So if any person sat down to replicate these results they would be able to do so.
Secrecy - that the small amount of materials held confidential would be used as a reason for one to not study and try to perform the broad aspects of the technology is to me an admission that one doesn't care to try. Also the confidential materials are not needed in order to demonstrate the workability of Dianetics and Scientology.
Trust - there is no selective editing of Dianetics and Scientology materials by the church. Extensive work has been done over the last 25 years to ensue they are 100% accurate against L Ron Hubbards every sentence.
http://www.scientology.org/david-miscavige/basic-books-and-lectures.html
While the video linked to above is 3 hours in length and I do not expect you to watch it, I am letting you know it exists and is a resource to answer this question fully.
Certainty - the subject was not borne out in a day or a month, and L Ron Hubbard implemented new paradigms and changes from 1950-1980s. The volume of developmental research, changes and additions and newly found or revised principles is mind-boggling, over 5,000 pages of technical volumes which are not held secret or edited down.
As for Wright's book, yes I dispute the claims on labor abuses. In fact his claims will be dealt with in due time by the church, they are false. Imprisonment and purging of top officials is easy for me to dispute. The imprisonment fact is a joke. Several accusations have been made about this and any that went to court ended in the church's favor. Purging of top officials, that's obviously at the church's discretion. http://www.freedommag.org goes over some of the higher profile ex-members.
I realize the answer on wrights book is incomplete, but I'm trying to get to everyone's questions and can come back to this if you are patient.

Q: I try to understand almost every person's religious viewpoint but Scientology is something I really struggle with, mainly due to the fact that the upper levels of the church's teachings are normally restricted until the individual has spent a certain amount of time in the church and donated a certain level of cash too.

This kinda seems to me like the Catholic Church putting a paywall around certain sections of the Bible.
What is your opinion on such practices?
A: About 1-2% of Scientology materials are confidential until you reach that level. I have. There is a reason they are confidential. As regards money in Scientology, yes if you in your current life decide right now to pursue that course your will pay money. But you will receive a larger amount of study and auditing that is not confidential and during that you would begin to see what Scientology is addressing with regards to a person. Now realize that going up to the top takes years, and the study is in fact similar to a university education in terms of time taken. Also there are many staff members who must dedicate time to you, hundreds of hours. So that costs money.

However if money is a problem there are ways to move up with a friend for a smaller cost.
Money is really no barrier to people coming in and learning Scientology or getting auditing. Anyone who decided to do it even if he had $50 in his name would experience immense gains.
Also people confuse donations for services with charitable donations. Some people giv $100k for the cause rather than for their services.

Q: About 1-2% of Scientology materials are confidential until you reach that level. I have. There is a reason they are confidential.

You see it's THIS that I have trouble with.
I know Scientology gets a lot of grief from the media and general public and believe me I'm not trying to badger you for info here, but how can it be justified sig
A: On thing is that this is not what the beliefs are BASED on. If lower level Scientology isn't valuable to a person or doesn't jive with them, then why bother pursuing it. Factually the highest level material in terms of Scientology philosophy happened right near the beginning. Also the media and online people are not LOOKING at those materials or mentioning them at all. Yet you can't even begin to understand these confidential levels if you don't know the basic concepts.

It is also one of those things that is not very "popular" but I feel it is the correct thing to do based on what I know

Q: To piggy-back on this, isn't almost counterproductive to restrict access to potentially enlightening materials? If what is restricted of such importance or power, wouldn't those be the things you want all interested parties to have access to?

I would just guess that if there is potentially strong value in what is restricted, that it would be of more use publically than privately as you could perhaps persuade or enlighten people who may otherwise not be convinced without access to that information.
A: Well these aren't materials of enlightenment, like the books and study materials of Scientology are. They contain procedures which are DONE, and the basic theory behind it is studied at lower levels.

I can tell you that there is nothing being missed out by a person at the lower levels - it's just a core tenet in the church that a person who jumps above his level can run into trouble.
Even at the non-confidential levels, if you run procedures above a persons level he can have trouble.

Q: I went to the Church of Scientology in in NYC and aksed some of the people there about Xenu. They did not know what I was talking about. However, when I look up Xenu, all of the popular results affiliate Xenu with Scientology.

Am I missing something here? How large a role does Xenu play in Scientology, if Xenu even plays a role at all?
Thanks for any light you can shed on the subject.
A: Xenu doesn't play a role. The assumption on Wikipedia and in the media is that this is the highest level belief a Scientologists attains to. Scientologists won't talk about it at the org you went into, because a) as you stated it to them, doesn't exist and b) the majority are not at the level that is being assumed.

So it is not a playing part in Scientology philosophy. You could train to be an auditor for years and never hear about it. You can search the indexes of even the advanced technical training volumes at a church and never find it.

Q: Favorite actor?
A: Leonardo Dicaprio John Travolta

Q: do scientologists joke around about Xenu or like space opera stuff? some of the church's, i guess, official story, on LHR's life don't match up with what is otherwise a generally accepted story. do you or anybody you know question that stuff or is that too taboo.
A: In regards to space opera, I really will refer you to the book Scientology: A History of Man. That will give anyone looking to get giddy on some unconventional concepts hours of material.

But conversely, if you haven't read the above, and I note here that you should read the 5 books coming before tht to have any concept of what you are studying, then if you haven't read the above it is very difficult to discuss the space opera concept.
And no Scientologists don't joke around about that. Honestly it doesn't even exist in Scientology culture

Q: Do you realize that you are part of a cult?

Do you realize that L Ron thought of this stuff out of thin air, something you or I could do?
A: After 15 years and hundreds of hours of auditing and thousands of pages of study I'm pretty sure I couldn't come up with Scientology. Maybe you could, but you haven't as of yet. I assume though you are talking about some far-fetched concepts like alien descendent beings inhabiting you body and causing you trouble. Have you entertained the possibility that Scientology doesn't preach that?

Q: Why does Scientology seem to shut down anyone who questions the leadership of the church? Also, don't you find it strange that all the texts for Scientology were written by one man with no other input?
A: All texts are written by L. Ron Hubbard because at one time other people were allowed to write articles and texts and honestly these contributed nothing to the subject and added confusion. People can consider their own bright ideas to be of vast importance but when used in auditing and applied to a person they uniformly flopped.

If people want to create their own spin-off of the subject, they are welcome to. In fact some people can't simply follow a prescribed procedure but have to add their own "improvements" to it. I have no problem with them exerting their own self determinism.
However I'm not going to let that be labelled as Scientology and then in 40 years wake up to the fact that everyone is worshipping tree bark and calling it Scientology. Don't know if that makes sense.
The church doesn't shut-down people he speak in opposition. Please provide some example

Q: Can you prove that Shelly miscavige wasn't murdered by her husband (david miscavige, your leader) or someone else in the church?
A: Not any more than I can't prove I haven't molested children

Q: Do you really believe in Xenu or have you not advanced/payed enough money to know yet? Also, whats up with R2-45?
A: R2-45 was a joke, he said it to s group of auditors and later published it in the book The Creation Of Human Ability and its very clear that it is a joke. In fact in the 50s when it was first joked about, There was no question about it. But time and viewpoints change and now it's taken a bit of seriously.

He was talking at that time period about exteriorization, making the person aware of being separate from the body. And he joked that the most effective method to achieve that is frowned upon by society at this time.

Q: Please give me your thoughts on this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quentin_Hubbard
A: I can't see L Ron Hubbard saying what the article claims him to have said. Plus in know the details of the death are murky, and it's tragic that it happened.

I'm also younger than that incident so I don't have pesonal accounts from the time, I know what you know so to speak

Q: How do you feel about the Church of Scientology's "Fair Game Policy?"

If the Church of Scientology is considered more of a philosophy than a religion, why is Church in the title? To me and other people, church has religious connotations.
A: Written and cancelled by LRH as it was misconstrued by others. And he was right. There is no policy in the church

Q: How was it misconstrued? What was the purpose/intent of it originally?
A: It applied in a legal sense, as basically Scientologists are never ever supposed to have legal actions taken against them by the church, as they are our friends and work with us. The policy applied to those seeking to stop whether legally or through propaganda, and set that legal actions could be taken against them. But it was misconstrued as not just legal actions, but all sorts of wierd espionage and unconventional tactics.

Q: Where do you see the future of the Church?
A: Right now large centers are being established in each major city and with the intent on implementing programs beyond just Scientology training and auditing, things like drug awareness campaigns, human rights groups locally, community activation projects. Basically the future is to reach out directly into the community and change conditions for the better, which breaks down to be very specific: Education Human rights Drug prevention Drug rehabilitation Morality Criminal reform Disaster Response

Q: This quote is attributed to L. Ron Hubbard: "You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." Source

Your thoughts?
A: I don't think he said it. There's a couple sworn testaments he said it, and a couple more that he didn't. I don't have them to hand but I can get them in a day or 2 and send them to you if you message me.

Q: What are your thoughts on the sick adults/children that have died in Scientologist families due to not being provided the needed medication?
A: It's sad. Is actually a strict policy of the church that people MUST get medical handling when they have a medical situation. So someone didn't follow that.

Q: I think that Tom cruise is bipolar. Do you?
A: No
Q: I take your acknowledgement of the fact that Tom cruise is NOT bipolar as affirmation that you consider bipolarism to exist, and you therefore acknowledge that psychiatry is an actual scientific field.
A: The field of mental health is an existing field that I acknowledge. I'll add that Dianetics is written not OUT of agreement with psychology and psychiatry, but as a subject laying out basic axioms in the general field of mental health.

I don't know that the term bi-polar existed when he authored the book so it isn't addressed. However schizophrenia and various other mental illnesses are.
What torques me the most about the general public image is that Dianetics and Scientology are so BROADLY not understood. Like how many people can rattle off the first 5 of the 100 or so axioms of Dianetics? Or at least give their general concepts.
Truthfully these fields should read these materials that apply to psychology and psychiatric treatment and see if it amplifies them at all. I think it does.

Q: Have you seen the BBC Panorama: The Secrets of Scientology documentary?

If so how do you feel that it portrayed Scientology?
Also what are your thoughts on how the Scientology leader featured in the film handled what was going on? Specifically speaking there is a confrontation about 3/4 of the way through.
Link for those interested: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJkQdLTJWwo
A: I saw it awhile ago. I did not watch the entire thing. Obviously the guy mishandled Sweeney at the end. I wouldn't have behaved like that

Q: Why does Scientology have such a negative press? Why is there a culture and a habit of ostracising from family members who are not in the church? Why do so many celebrities endorse the religion?
A: The culture around ostracizing family members who are not in the church is not really an existing phenomenon - maybe individual Scientologists have left there families due to ill will, maybe some families kicked them out when the became Scientologists, maybe the person themselves were too scared to confront their family and felt they had to jump ship. There are countless reasons why someone may have done this. Scientology philosophy doesn't preach leaving your family. It advocates increasing your confront and ability across all parts of your life including your family.

I only know of a few celebrity endorsers to be honest with you. What makes you think a lot of celebrities endorse it?
As for the press, well I could tell you that the stories get twisted and convoluted or sensationalized, but that would be me regurgitating someone else's answer. I think mass media are severely fucked up on the subject of truth and it applies to more subjects than just Scientology.

Q: This is a religion. There is no way around that (it is called the Church of Scientology). How do you feel about a religion restricting information based on the amount of money you pay them?

I can see this compared to something like a priest who puts in the proper time to get more and more information, but the thing is, with a priest, they are allowed to have all of the information up front except for a few things like exorcisms and stuff like that (I am sure there is more information I do not know about that is restricted to men of the cloth).
Now, if they put in enough time and devotion to the religion, they can learn many of the "upper tier" pieces of information. No money involved.
Why are people required to pay in order to learn this stuff?
Can't they just put in the proper amount of time and devotion to learn it?
Also, why are you not answering any questions about Xenu?
A: Information is not restricted based on what you pay. Very little information is restricted from someone. I answered more thoroughly above somewhere.

People pay in order to keep the church they are doing the services at alive. Books are books and can be read at home or anywhere, yes, but there are counseling services done inch require a building, staff, electricity, furniture and these things cost money. The cost of courses is kept very low, while the cost of auditing is per hour and is similar to any one-on-one professional counseling charges. Professional auditing costs money to deliver so therefore it needs exchange from the person.
There are basic courses to be done for free. Scientology.org has online ones for free.
To learn it for free, we made donations of the books to every lending library on the planet.
I've addressed the Xenu question now in various posts now.

Q: So what do you think about operation Snow White where the church infiltrated government agencies? Is that something a normal church would / should do? Also I think for me one of the weirdest parts about the church aside from their military style bases (which again sounds like something a cult would do) is the Sea Org with their billion year contracts. What goes on aboard that ship?

Don't you have any doubts that something might be a little off about your organization?
A: I answered on Snow White in another post, but no it was illegal and incorrect and people went to jail as they should have. I wasn't involved in that am not involved illegal activity in present time.

And the sea org is extremely mild compared to how I've seen it represented on Reddit and online. I have never even been on a boat larger than 10 feet so I can't give you personal accounts of what went on
 

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
Here is another one from a year ago (Another person once again)
Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/vuf1y/iama_long_time_scientologist_amaa/

Q: have you been through the wall of fire? ever been to the RPF?
A:

No and no. "The wall of fire" is slang of a level we call OT3, i'm afraid i'm not there yet. And no, i've never been asked to do the RPF, although a few friends of mine have.RPF for those that want to know is the program that Sea Org members (the management body of the church) are asked to do if they screw something up big time. It's hard work and it takes a while. If they don't want to do it they are removed from the Sea Org.

Q: so you are like a low level scientologist. OT3 is only the tip of the iceberg. it becomes more outlandish as you go higher. at the highest OT level L Ron finally lets you in on the secret.

you mocked it all up - LRH
do you think R2-45 is a legitimate way for someone to go clear and control MEST ?
A: Its a bit of a misconception that your OT level is some sort of rank. It's really not. You can be very high in the structure of Scientology and be at the bottom of the bridge.

Going clear takes many processes, not just R2-45.

Q: Why do you think most people think of Scientology as evil and crazy? Is their any validity to their beliefs?
A: Our marketing surveys tend to find that most people don't think we are evil- they just don't know anything about us, or have never heard of us at all. There is a lot of negative stuff on the internet, but they really are a very loud minority.

There are a few horror stories out there about times we may have messed something up, or somebody got treated wrong or whatever. We are not perfect, and an organisation is only as good as the people that make it up. But if you survey a group of people who have had involvement in Scientology I think you'd find there was also a good volume of positive opinions.

Q: Well, there you go. It's a religion that does MARKETING SURVEYS. That's not religion, that's business.
A: Of course we do marketing surveys. We believe we have a technology which can help people, and we want to tell people about that in the best possible way. I think you'll find if all churches did marketing surveys you'd find their promotion a lot less irritating.

Q: What do you think of Operation Snow White?
A: Honestly I don't know what really happened here. I've heard plenty of accounts, rarely are two the same.

Those who were supposedly part of the Church who were involved in Snow White were all removed and safeguards put in place to make sure something like that could never happen again.

Q: Supposedly? Hubbards own wife was convicted to 5 years in prison for being a part of it.
A: Yes, that's true. Again- I cant give a 100% accurate story of what really happened. What Mary Sue's real involvement was I don't know. Maybe she knew nothing about and just took the fall. Maybe she knew all about it. If i knew i'd tell you.

Q: What is your occupation to support your Scientology costs? -Do you bring up Scientology at work?

You're on Reddit, so I have some basic assumptions, some of which that you're down to Earth enough to to have this open forum. There are obviously much less down to Earth people in Scientology (just like Christians and Jews, etc.) Do you interact with them? How so? What does that entail?
A: I don't have huge Scientology costs. These are always optional, and you can do a huge amount of Scientology services without paying a fortune.

Yes my colleges at work know i'm a Scientologist. Everybody reacts differently, most realize pretty quickly that you're normal and quit worrying about it.
Most Scientologists are very down to Earth. You just tend to hear about the ones that aren't. 'SCIENTOLOGIST DOES SOMETHING TOTALLY NORMAL' does not make for an interesting headline, so you only hear about it when somebody does something unusual sounding. If you spend your days hanging out with Scientologists you'll very quickly find they're pretty normal people.

Q: Thanks for answering! Can I ask some follow ups?

How important is it to move up levels? Do you get looked down upon if you'd rather just kinda chill at the bottom?
There have been multiple documents released giving away secrets of Scientology. Have you read them, or do you believe that even though they are available, you should receive them at your own time?
A: No problem.

Moving up levels is always optional, nobody thinks less of you for not having done it though. Most scientologists want to move on up though, as we see it as the route to spiritual freedom.
You'd have to ask about a specific document for me to give a good answer. Probably most of those documents are out of context, and were really never a secret at all.

Q: Is it really as expensive as everyone thinks?
A: Sort of. At the lower levels its very cheap, if you want to do the higher levels it gets expensive.

Churches are very expensive to buy and run, you can only survive of the donations of your members. The higher levels effectively finance our ability to keep the Chruches there for those who cant afford much. So you may have 10 people who come in and donate for a $30 dollar course that costs us $100 to deliver to them. So then the one guy who comes in and donates $1000 for a higher level course that costs us $300 to deliver has just broken us even. That's generally how it works, we are not making any money.

Q: Also, South Park's rendition, completely fictitious?
A: I havn't actually seen that SP episode! I probably should have figured somebody would ask and watched it before I posted, but it didn't occur to me on time.
Q: Just one thing. It contains OT3 material, so according to Hubbard anyone watches it (and is not ready for it) will get pneumonia and die. But then again Hubbard was a drug-addict nutbag so there's that...
A: I must have missed the news on that night that South Park episode aired, as i didnt hear about anybody randomly dying.


Q: we are not making any money.
how would you know that if u may ask?
A: I volunteered at the church of many years. I know exactly where the donations went.

Q: the unfinished superpower building? i have the floor plans if you would like to know where the donations are going.
A: Super power is funded by people specifically donating for that construction project. Joe blow donating for his Dianetics Course in the New York church isn't paying for Super Power, hes paying for New York Church's power bill.

And i've seen the floor plans, but cool that you have a copy of them.

Q: What is the worst thing someone has said to you about your religion?
A: Somebody once told me i worshiped tomatoes.


Q: Whats all this stuff I hear about Xenu and space planes?
A:
The idea that 'you only get told about that stuff later' isn't true at all. There is plenty of stuff available at any level on the subject.

Q:
i think that's been pretty well disproven, there is a pricelist and scientology is compartmentalized for a very good reason. each level is a conditioning routine for the next level above so there is no truth to the fact that a scientologist can just walk in and ask to read OT6. it simply doesn't work that way inside the church. and if you did you would be dealing with ethics and would be word clearing for a week.
A:
Correct, you cant just walk in and read OT6. But if you want to read stuff about other planets, aliens, etc, you can do that in plenty of books available at any level.
My point is more that we dont wait till you get to OT3 then shout SURPRISE, ALIENS LOL!11! You knew it was coming long before you got there.
A: The whole Xenu thing is pretty silly and normally waaaay out of context.

Scientologists believe you are a spirit, and that you have lived before, and that you will live again. Reincarnation, sort of.
So, if you are a soul, and you have had past lives, just how far back do these lives go? Did you fight and die in World War 2? Did you march on Gaul from Rome? Did you help plan to build the pyramids in the image of Orion's Belt? But that is modern history. What about 100,000 years ago? What about a billion years ago? Were you always on Earth?
These questions we pose to give a concept of what we believe. It stands over these many, many years, some very interesting things may have happened.
Is one of these interesting things Xenu and his Volcano? No, that story is way off, or so im told.

Q: How much money have you spent with Scientology? (If you don't feel comfortable answering this, that's fine!)

Do you feel uncomfortable telling people you're a Scientologist in public? Do you get a lot of strange reactions?
What got you into Scientology?
What do Scientologists think about Tom Cruise/Do they look up to him?
The media seems to represent Scientology as a "once you enter, you will never leave" kind of 'cult'. To what degree is this the truth?
A: I've donated very little. We are talking sub $1000. However, iv'e still had probably around 300 hours of Scientology auditing, and done hundreds more hours of courses. As covered earlier, the idea that you have to donate shit loads just isnt true. You can, but you dont have to.

I dont mind telling people- but i only bring it up if i've gone time to answer all the inevitable questions. Normally people are just really interested.
Personally I really like Tom Cruise. I chatted to him once for a little while, and although i was a 'nobody' he still had all the time in the world for me. Great guy IMHO.

Q: Have you been a Scientologist since childhood? Did you have a choice or did your family raise you as one?
A: Yes i was born into a Scientology family. I was never pushed for involvement though. When i was late teens i asked if i could do some courses to find out what it was about. I like it so i stuck with it.

Q: I have a lot of questions, but here's one to start.

Any thoughts on the supposed superpowers you gain as a Clear? Hubbard has said that Clear's do not get colds. Clears can read minds, travel through time, do telekinesis, heal people by touching them and much more. No clear has ever demonstrated anything like this. What do you think you can actually do once you are clear?
A: I've never read anything about Clears being able to read minds, time travel, do telekinesis etc. If you can quote a source book/page I'll be able to comment further, but i'm pretty sure somebody's given you misinformation on that one.

Clear is simply the ability to think clearly, without your past experiences effecting your ability to analyze.
Q: Basically, everything that is mentioned here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supernatural_abilities_in_Scientology_doctrine
Most of that stuff is straight from the horses mouth, so to speak.
A: Great link! I have not seen some of that stuff before.

Each of those claims needs a separate answer really, which would involve an awful lot of research and typing for me. However, as a general rule unless you can quote Hubbard saying it directly, it's just somebody's opinion.
For example, just because one Scientologist believed he could travel back in time to avoid the oncoming truck does not mean time travel is part of Scientology (it isn't). The only thing it proves is that that person believed he could do it. He may well have been nuts.

Q: On pg.121 of the 1992 Hardcover edition of Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, Hubbard writes:

"Clears do not get colds."
True or false?
A: True, he wrote that. Later wrote other things to contradict it.

Q: So how do you feel about L. Ron Hubbard saying "You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." Anyways, what got you into Scientology in the first place?
A: This quote is taken waaaay out of context. Ive heard the full lecture in which he says it. If i recall correctly he is quoting somebody else!

Q: How did you react when Anonymous publicly attacked Scientology?
A: We really don't care.

If anything they stick us back in the headlines, which we appreciated.
As posted elsewhere, we just have a bit of a giggle at the masked guys as we walk by. All they do is make us look good- We are not hiding our faces and shouting abuse, where as Anonymous is, and the public perceives that.

Q: I can't think of anything nice to ask or say to you.
A: Well then i appreciate that you've refrained.

Q: Do you ever wake up and think "Maybe the crazies on the internets are right!" ? Or just generally doubt your faith? How do you deal with that?
A: The thing about the crazies on the internet, is that a person who has a current connection to the Church, you can see what is true and what isnt true. Most of the stuff online has some basis in truth, but then gets blown way out of proportion or placed way out of context. So when i see something online that i dont know the truth of, i assume its wrong as usual and look into it later.

Q: Why do you think a lot of people think that Scientology is a cult which ruins lives?
A: As a Scientologist who doesnt hide my religious beliefs, ive found that most people have a neutral view of Scientology. There is a hardcore following of haters on the internet who have done a good job and making themselves seem a majority.

Q: Do you actually believe a E meter does something electronic or scientific or is that where your faith begins?
A: The emeter is actually one of the easiest things to use to show a skeptical person that you're not full of shit.

You can do what we call a pinch test. You get the person connected up to the emeter, and pinch him on the arm, and let him see how the needle on the dial reacts to the pain.
Then you ask him to recall the moment of the pinch- and you see the needle react the same way.
Its how we find moments of pain during the auditing process, you ask the person to recall, and if you the needle on the dial swings over, you know youve found something that is worth addressing.

Q: Is it true that when Scientologist women give birth they are supposed to try not to make any noise?
A: Yup. The idea here is that the noise is recorded in the memory along with the pain, and could effect you and the baby in later life. There is a lot more to this and I'll try to come back and edit this with a nice long answer for you, but let me deal with the other people waiting first.
Q: That's one of the more hilarious damn things I've ever read. Do you realize how noisy it is inside the womb?
A: The idea is that the noises only have an effect when the person is in pain, its not a 24/7 thing.

The basic concept is that voice commands and other sounds during moments of heavy pain can have a hypnotic effect in later life. There's a 500+ page book covering, so quite hard to summise, but check out www.dianetics.org if you want a video of the basic concept.

Q: What do you think about a number of cases against Scientology because evidence mysteriously vanishes. Also, the past record of abuse against members, and further attempts at covering it up.

Finally, what do you think about defectors talking about how the higher ups in the institution are managing it poorly, getting violent, and ruining what the church stands for -- further hurting the name.
A: You'll need to be more specific with that first question for me to give a fair answer.

It's pretty standard behavior for people who get fired from a job to complain about the boss. As far as im concerned, as long as I see the church continuing to survive, the higher ups must be doing a good job.

Q: Does Scientology accept evolution as a fact? If so, how does the idea of evolution sync with the idea of reincarnation of spirits? Is it just humans, or do all organisms have a spirit?
A: I don't really understand the whole concept that anything other that evolution is a valid way for complex left to come around. The idea that just a few thousand years ago God waved his arms and the world began is pretty wild.

As far as we are concerned the biological line of evolution followed by the body is totally separate to the spirit. There is actually an entire book covering this subject from the angle of Scienotlogy called History of Man.

Q: Does Scientology really not believe in, or allow, psychology or psychiatric help for their members? If so, what kind of counseling or help do they offer for people going through emotional issues or who have medical anxiety/depression/psychiatric issues?
A: Scientology itself helps with those emotional issues, and in my opinion we do it much more effectively that your average psycologist- if only because we dont just categorize you with a disorder and give you some pills to take.

We are quite specifically against the modern culture of prescribing drugs to anybody who has a mental issue.



















 

Chris Shelton

Patron with Honors
Well I stand corrected! Someone at OSA is doing some kind of Reddit operation for sure if they have two SO members going on line to answer questions.

So many of the answers this guy is giving are so blatantly untrue, though. Really trying hard to make it sound so reasonable and calm and wonderful. Maybe this is some kind of 'survey tech' to find out what kind of answers will calm down people asking about the really hard stuff? Can't quite figure out why else they would do something like this.

Here is another one from a year ago (Another person once again)
Most Scientologists are very down to Earth. You just tend to hear about the ones that aren't. 'SCIENTOLOGIST DOES SOMETHING TOTALLY NORMAL' does not make for an interesting headline, so you only hear about it when somebody does something unusual sounding. If you spend your days hanging out with Scientologists you'll very quickly find they're pretty normal people.

Yeah, they're all cool and down to earth until you disagree with the Church on anything significant. Those "pretty normal people" will throw you under the bus after one phone call from an Ethics Officer. Remember that when you think you have "friends" in Scientology. There is no such thing as a Scientologist friend.
 

Reasonable

Silver Meritorious Patron
If you want to do some damage then one of us can do an interview saying we are a Scientologist, then answer honestly from the point of view of a Scienologist without a "Scientology PR filter"
 

BlackRob

Gold Meritorious Patron
Here is an AMA with an Ex-Scientologist:
Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/fgpss/im_an_exscientologist_ama/

Q: Was South Park accurate in its depiction of Scientology?
A:

not really. it was more of an extreme exaggeration. however, it isn't false. south park showed a "belief" that they have, but its not something you find out in the beginning. many people in scientology don't hear about those things until they've paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to be "prepared" for that information.
A:

scientologists are forbidden from reading any anti-scientology materials, and if one does, they get in trouble and have go through a lot of hoops to continue doing scientology, if thats what they want to do, or to keep their family who threatens to disconnect from them. so yeah, you would think smart people would do a little research, but it really isn't that simple.

Q:

What is the reasoning behind having to pay to learn more about the religion?
A:

its supported by the concept of exchange. in scientology, everything must be "in exchange", and the idea is that if someone gets something for free, then they dont value it and dont get the full benefits from it. this is the reason given when asked why the courses cost so much.the idea of being "in exchange" spreads through other matters in scientology as well, including relationships. for instance, if your boyfriend resents you and is treating you badly, it may be because he is "out exchange" and is lashing out because he is trying to justify his lack of support on his end in the relationship. getting him back "in exchange" to rehabilitate the relationship can be done by, as an example, having him work around the house, pay for things, or in general, do more towards the relationship.

Q: How do they keep people coming back for more?

Is there a prototypical scientologist?
A: its the idea that there is more you "still haven't learned" and more you do to improve your life. the early stuff works and so you think, ah well the stuff at the top must be like magic!

Q: Why do people join Scientology, then? Where are the immediate benefits for a new Scientology disciple?
A: they join to make their lives better, which is what scientology says they can help people do. the truth is far from that. the immediate benefits for someone might be, depending on the course or service they took, a feeling of being lighter, feeling better about a problem the person was having at the time, feeling better about themselves. the early stuff works, there's no question. its once you get hooked that things go down hill.

Q: Is Scientology actively doing something to make those neophytes feel better, or is it just their wrongly feeling of being a part of something greater that will magically take care of their needs?
A: i dont believe that is the real purpose of scientology. i think the real purpose of scientology is to make money. in order to do that they have to offer a little something that does work - ie, the common sense stuff.

Q: What level were you before leaving? And did they give you any trouble?
A: i didn't get very far, most of my time was spent working for the church. and yes, they gave me a lot of trouble when i left. most of my friends and some family members refuse to speak to me now because i no longer wish to be a scientologist. they threatened me with a "declare" which is basically excommunication from the church, but as consequence means all scientologists are not allowed to speak to you, ever, for any reason.

Q: Why did you because a Scientologist, what attracted you to the church?
How much did they make you donate?
Why do you think so many people are attracted to the church?
What exactly do they preach anyways?
A: i was actually brought into scientology through my parents, and basically told that if i didn't get involved, i'd be kicked out of the house and have to fend for myself. (i was 15!)

every course has a set price that you pay when you want to take it. same goes for the "services", which is basically sitting alone with someone and talking to them (though its a lot more intense that just that), and beyond the courses and services, the church is always asking for donations to help them do one thing or another (build a new church or send a mission somewhere) and of course every member is pretty much expected to purchase the materials - books, lectures, etc. i bought many of the materials and courses, and a few of the services, about 10 grand in total is my estimate.
i think the main attraction is that the church markets themselves as a "path to happiness" which for most people is a huge goal in life. the truth is this isn't what happens, but i think that is what first attracts people who are unfamiliar with it.
the last question is hard to answer. i could tell you what they SAY they teach, or i could tell you what really happens. either way, its a LOT to tell. what they tell people is that they teach "an applied philosophy, tools for life" but really its brainwashing. they work at you, work at you, work at you until you think like they do and believe like they do, and then they pressure you into either giving them all your money or joining for life. its all or nothing.

Q: Had your parents joined Scientology recently when they forced you to join or had they always been members? What was your family's religious beliefs prior to Scientology? Do you have any siblings? If so, were they also forced to join? At what age?

Thanks for doing this AMA. I know the "church" can be beastly to its defectors.
A: my parents were new to scientology, maybe a few months when they made me get involved. i do have siblings, but they were very young at the time, and have grown up with it now. they are in the sea org and do not speak to me, they joined the SO in their mid teens.

Q: how exactly do "they work at you?" i speak with a general knowledge of scientology (south park, bits of research on the internet), and i feel like knowing even a little about scientology beforehand would predispose one to reject it as bogus. what types of methods does the church use to "brainwash" or manipulate one into believing?
A: well, the best way i can describe it is justifying craziness over a long period of time. after a while, things start to make sense. a lot of it also comes from the drilling you do during courses. drilling means repeating something until you can recite it verbatim, or doing an action over and over and over again until its absolutely perfect and can be demonstrated 10 times to someone else's satisfaction. these are not exaggerations. there was one time i spent 6 months reading a single page because i kept failing the drill!

Q: So did you have to pay out of your own pocket from the start? Or did your parents help you at all?
A: my parents paid for most of my introductory courses, and then when i was old enough to support myself, i purchased a lot of materials myself as well. then i joined staff, and courses became free (though the materials weren't, i still had to pay for the books and course packs and stuff, which i did).

Q: What's the most retarded shit you've seen scientologists do?
A: oh god the list is endless!! especially once you get into the staff and sea org sections of the organization. (sea org is like their "monks"... sort of, members who have given up everything to serve the church) its a lot of irrational behavior and backwards logic.

i would have to say, though this is sad too, i once saw a guy try to convince people he could walk (he had no use of his legs, they were mangled since birth and used a wheelchair) by pushing himself out of his chair and hobbling forward like a gorilla. this was in front of about a hundred other members.
Q: context?
A: in scientology, when a student finishes a course, they tell others what gains they got from it. this is done at something of an informal graduation at the end of every week. other students, staff members and scientologists attend these graduations to hear what people are getting out of their courses and auditing. this person did this at a graduation, in front of everyone. and they all clapped!! like it was some sort of miracle

Q: What do you find yourself having trouble getting adjusted to now that you have left (if anything)?
A: getting my emotions back. scientology teaches you not to react to anything. it teaches you not to have sympathy for anyone, to look down at people who "don't know", to be cold and think only of the one goal you're trying to reach at that point, as long as you achieve your "mission", nothing else and no one else matters. though i never felt that i was ever as cold as a lot of the scientologists that i knew, i notice now how i'm almost unable to have pity or empathy for anyone or anything. that has been really difficult for me because i know i should.

Q: So you'd be good at poker then?
A: lol i dont know maybe. i'm not a very good liar, and i just meant feeling things about stuff that is SUPPOSED to affect me, like a family member dying or a friend in trouble. i'm oddly detached and that bothers me.

Q: dont let it. i'm the same, but i was never a scientologist. there are some things that you cant change, why should you let them bother you?

being detatched from reality only lets you see all the more objectively. ok, terrable analagy time:
its like being friends with somoene in a shitty relationship - they will never see it, and will argue when you mention it, but as soon as they realise they're all like fuck, how could i not see that?
A: thats actually a pretty good analogy :) and that is pretty much exactly how it is with scientologists. i compare them to junkies, addicts. because all they can see is their drug of choice, be it heroin or scientology, its what makes them feel good and anyone speaking badly about it is an enemy. getting them away from it is the same, they will fight until they finally realize themselves what is going on. and they wont realize until they've hit rock bottom. i cant fight with my family anymore, they have to see it for themselves.

Q: It's tough to walk away from your friends and family, I admire your strength in doing so. What sort of support structure do you have?
A: i moved and built a new circle of friends who weren't involved. it was difficult, still is difficult. i cant talk to my parents the way i used to be able to.

since leaving, i've pushed myself to succeed in other avenues, like going back to college (which is something scientology discourages) that has really helped open up a lot of other things for me to focus on and put my energy into. i couldn't have done a lot of this without my boyfriend, who i've been with since leaving. he's given me real stability, understands me and loves me for who i am with all my flaws and scars.

Q: Sounds like a great boyfriend, you're lucky! Great job going back to school.

So your parents haven't disconnected completely? It must suck not being able to talk to them like you used to but it could be worse. Disconnection is evil.
A: my parents are sort of burying their heads in the sand and i dont talk to them about all the "bad stuff" about scientology. maybe its selfish but i just want to be able to call them and tell them i got an A or that i got a new job, or anything, you know? they are still heavily involved and my siblings dont talk to me at all.

Q: That's not selfish, that's normal! Anyone would want to be able to do that - it would be crazy to not want that.

If you avoid talking about Scientology is there anything your folks do that make you feel you can't talk to them about your latest grades or job offer etc?
Did your siblings formally disconnect from you, or did they just start giving you the cold shoulder? How long?
A: most of my friends just stopped responding to me, calls, texts, fb messages and such, just gone. my siblings did the same and then, after much badgering by me told me they didn't "feel comfortable talking to someone who is against the one thing in their life that makes sense". as far as talking to my folks, its just weird. its like talking to your neighbor that you dont really know that well. "oh yeah i'm doing well how are you and the family?" type of stuff.

Q: I am curious, why do they discourage college? Is this applicable to all types of educational institutions?
A: i believe so, and what i've been told is that pursuing "wrong" data is irrational and i should only follow scientology because they have all the information on everything i would ever need to know, and because if i'm going to devote my life to scientology, why do i need a degree or an education beyond basics? scientology can teach me those things. i dont need to waste my time learning from "wogs" (worthy oriental gentleman, but means any non-scientologist, a derogatory term and used when speaking down on non-scientologists)

since leaving, i've come to the conclusion that the real reason is because once a person becomes educated about the real world and other things out there besides scientology, they may leave or begin to question things about it.also, i feel i should note that most scientology kids do NOT have a good education, most are home-taught or attend scientology schools. they are far behind the children of their age group and are unable to cope with or understand situations outside of scientology.

Q: Do you think the people at the top actually believe it?
A: i honestly don't know. sometimes i think they'd HAVE to in order to live with themselves. some of the things that happen to people at the top is truly horrendous. and then sometimes i think they have to KNOW its all a lie to get money, otherwise, how could they continue to scheme the way they do? i think a lot of them do, and some of them dont but are either too afraid or too involved in the madness to get out.

Q: What's the deal with Sea Org? I remember the first time I heard the story of L Ron Hubbard and I got to the part where he started living on a boat surrounded by young servants, I thought "That makes sense. If I was an obscenely rich demigod I'd probably move onto a yacht and have sex with my followers in international waters too."

But apparently it's just a Scientologist navy with minimal sexual abuse. What gives? What do they do all day? What do Scientologists need done on the ocean?
And another question- If you had the ability to rejoin the Church and go straight to the inner circle, but you couldn't do anything which would harm the church or its reputation, would you?
A: the sea org is the group of true (for the most part) believers who have given up everything to serve the church and its endeavors. so basically, the church needs a new building? send sea org members to go build it for free. they need advertising? get sea org members to design, film, produce and promote it. they get paid about $50 a week, if they get paid at all, with no days off, often 16 to 18 hour days or more, lots of hard labor, harsh punishments, and LOTS of sexual abuses. the sea org is mainly land based now. the ones on the boat deliver the upper most services that are deemed too high level to be delivered on land.

and to answer you last question, i would never go back. i know more about scientology now than most scientologists would ever know.
Q: I think what he's saying is before, it all just felt wrong to him and he needed to get out, and now he's learned much more about the inner workings and wouldn't be able to bring himself to going back to an organization such as that, now that he knows so much more about how screwed up it is.
A: well, i've done a lot of research into the LRH's true history (the founder) and found a lot disagreements with what the church says he was, a lot of lies. i've also spoken to many people who were involved in all levels of scientology, from the casual reader and student to those who held top level positions in the sea org. i've read hundreds of accounts of people who were, dating as far back as its foundation in the 50s to just recently. i know what really happened with all the "revisions" of the materials, i've read the originals and their subsequent re-releases, i've listened to over a hundred hours of LRH lectures, originals and edited versions, and found hundreds of discrepancies that just don't add up. i dont think that scientologists ask the kinds of questions that would lead them to finding out this kind of stuff. it was amazing to me, still is amazing to me. you live in a bubble in scientology, and its dangerous to look outside. the majority of scientologists have no clue what staff and sea org members go through every day. thats what iknow, those personal stories that are just heart breaking, most scientologists dont have any idea about that stuff.

Q: What was your initial reaction to the stuff (is it called techs?) that comes from dianetics?

I read it and from what I remember it was mostly just common sense and gut-explanations (wrong in many cases) for stuff that any intro-psychology course would teach. But some people just suck it up and believe they've found something new and totally magical, while others might see it as "yeah but this is what I already know, just explained with other words.
Don't know if that question makes sense at all but anyways, congratulations on being a strong enough person to do the right thing and I hope everything goes well for you in the future.
A: i thought it was weird! i didn't read dianetics until i'd been in for around 7 years or so, but what they were telling me was not jiving with what i thought was real (at that time). but you are right about one thing - its stuff that would be taught in any intro-psych course, because thats all hubbard ever did. he was once quoted as saying "writing for a penny a word is ridiculous. if a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." if there's one thing he was really good at, it was marketing. i'll give him that. and i think thats what really gets people. its a little bit of common sense thrown in with a LOT of marketing. thats the hook.

and thank you!

Q: Are there drugs involved in scientology? Does all the antipsychiatry stuff I hear about rule out their use?

What do you do for a living now?
What do scientologists think (what are they told to think) about other religions? Or about academics, scientists...?
A: no drugs used or advocated, in fact they prohibit the use of any drugs of any kind, including over the counter pain med type stuff (though hubbard used a ton to the day he died!! they dont know that though!) the anti-psych stuff does rule out the use of drugs.

these days i am in school full time.
i think that most scientologists accept people of other beliefs but secretly think they if they dont believe in scientology, they are all lost. scientology will publicly say that they accept people of all religions and they are free to continue to practice their own religion while still being a scientologist, but the fact is that once you're in, you either are completely a scientologist or you're a tourist.
they think that science and doctors and higher education in general is hogwash. they think that scientology and l. ron hubbard has all the information you would ever need to know about anything and that it is superior to any education you could attain anywhere else.

Q: regarding your comments about the religion teaching a sense of being apathetic and emotionless, how is it that celebrity Scientologists such as tom cruise, will smith, etc. seem to the public eye to be the opposite? is it a facade, they're supposed to be some of the top members?
A: i think it is very much a show. a lot of exes that i've spoken to have told me that while they were in, they felt a lot of the time like they had to have a smile on their face, or someone would know something was wrong, and if something was wrong, then there must be something wrong with them, and they must be doing something wrong. it never occurred to them that there might be something wrong with scientology. until much later of course.

Q: *Does the church frown upon homosexuality?

*Are you from California or is Scientology really that developed in other states?
I'm in Chicago and the only sign I've ever seen of it was a store front church in a seedy area, making me think it really hadn't caught on, even in a city as large as Chicago.
*Maybe I've got this wrong but how does the church continue to support itself when it seems like instead of paying for classes/lectures one could just work for the church (sea org) and have meals, lodging paid for by the church? Yes, you're working 60+ hours a week for them but hey- what are they gonna do if you show up late, or arent a hard worker?
*What are some of the punishments?
A: they consider the urge to be homosexual as an aberration. though these days its not so pc to say that, and so they accept homosexuals as members. but its pretty obvious what other scientologists think and what they say behind those members' backs.

i'm not from california and i think its more developed in larger cities where there's more tourism and more people. the church is losing members, so its no surprise that you didn't see much life in the one you saw, though it might just have been a mission. i'm not sure as i've never been to chicago.
the church supports itself on its members donations, the amounts of which are beyond belief. the branch i attended had a reserve of 20 million dollars alone, all from donations, and thats only a small percentage of the donations that they collect. multiply that at the very least by half the states in this country alone, and you have some idea of the financial power they have.
some of the punishments include solitary confinement in disgusting conditions, physical beatings, verbal abuse, blackmail, the list goes on. in the sea org, they have what's called the "RPF" or the rehabilitation project force. if you get in trouble, you get "RPF'd" and are made to menial and disgusting labor, like cleaning a room in the basement literally filled with feces, until your superiors have decided that you've "made up the damage", depending on how badly you've offended them. and it may seem like the best way to go, which is why i think so many people do join the sea org, but the reality is that you share a small (maybe 8x8) room with 10 to 15 other people, you get MAYBE one meal a day, unless there's some urgent emergency going on where you have to work through your meal time (which, if you get it, is about 15 minutes, and these kind of emergencies happen all the time), and when you DO eat, its rice and beans, or some other unsubstantial meal that you need to huff down so you can get back to work. its slave labor, and thats putting it nicely.

Q: How do so many people live in such small quarters? Bunk beds? Hammocks? These people must be emaciated. Have you ever heard of someone pressing charges for the beatings? Who or what organizations do scientologists seem to be afraid of? (I would imagine law enforcement, psychiatrists-you've mentioned higher education)
A: yeah they have bunk beds in the rooms, i'm not sure if its two or three to a wall, but they are all each wall with some sleeping on the floor or sleeping in shifts. they are fed enough to give the appearance of health.

there have been cases against the church, but you are automatically "declared" or excommunicated. scientologists sign paperwork stating that they are never allowed to sue the church when they join staff or the sea org. though the legality of said "paperwork" is questionable.
and scientologists are afraid of other scientologists. they're afraid of people "finding out all the things they've done" and kicking them out of the church, or losing all their friends and family if anything ever goes wrong or if they ever leave. the top management seems to be afraid of the government finding out its a scam and how they've avoided paying taxes all these years, i think they're afraid of the medical community pointing out the flaws in the logic, and the only way to position one's self as THE superior source of information about the mind is to discredit the other main source - psychology.

Q: What drove you to join it, outside looking in it looks like an obvious cult that only cares about money and power. I guess I can see situations where people are depressed, starved for acceptance and what not and just go with the flow. What was it for you?
A: well for me i think it was more to stay with my family. i was pretty much given an ultimatum - get in or get out. so i got in. for a lot of people, i think its that they are searching for something - happiness, fulfillment, answers, etc - and at first, scientology seems to offer that.

Q: What sort of readings did you get on the e-meter?
A: the usual, you know, floating needles when appropriate, falling, rising, etc. its all a lot of nonsense. i never failed a meter check, and if you know how, its pretty simple to deceive one.

Q: Do they constantly try to contact you? Try to threaten or guilt trip you into coming back?
A: they did in the beginning. they would go back and forth between being nice and trying to bribe me into coming back to threatening me with a declare and telling my family and friends "all the bad things i've done". now they leave me alone, for the most part. not anymore. in the beginning it was relentless and very stressful. but thankfully, they have bigger fish to fry now, and leave me alone for the most part. i get a "hello, how are things, ever coming back?" every now and then but nothing more and i'm grateful for it

Q: You ever get to meet any famous members? Beck, Tom Cruise, Travolta etc? And if so were they like really into it, moreso than average members because they can afford the more expensive classes?
A: i've met beck and his family, i met tom and katie, jason lee, jenna elfman, jeff pomerantz and danny masterson. they seemed like great people, jenna elfman especially. i got a kind of weird vibe from cruise, sort of a "holier than thou" kind of thing, but over all they are just like the rest of us. i do think some of them are more invested in it, but only because they are a public figure and, in some ways, represent the church. so the church does pressure them to continue to publicize their activities in scientology.

Q: Did you ever have moments where you thought "Surely that can't be true?". Like with the outrageous claims against psychiatry and psychiatric medicine etc.

How often were you audited to make sure you were buying into it all?
A: those moments were very brief if they occurred. its just that they made it make so much sense. scientologists can rationalize anything, which is kinda scary. i did a LOT of training, rather than auditing, though i did receive some auditing. its really just a lot of answering questions until you consistently give them the answer they want, "drilling" so that by the time you encounter some kind of information that doesn't quite jive, you've got the policies memorized that will justify it.

Q: did you sign one of those 10,000 year contracts ?
A: i did sign a billion year contract to join the sea org, but shortly after was treated awfully and decided to leave before ever actually becoming a sea org member - THANK GOD!

Q: I worked very briefly for a company that was a WISE company. A lot of the people there seemed weird and I think I only figured out why when I found out what a WISE company is.

I think the founder of the company was fairly high up in the church -- but I believe it was because he was funneling hundreds of thousands of dollars from the company to the church.
He later killed an employee and tried to kill himself. Scientology sucks :(
A: Rex Fowler, yeah we all heard about that one. i'm sorry you had to work in such a crazy environment. i'm glad you never felt the need to get involved!

Q: Can you describe your state of mind when it finally hit you that you needed to get out?
A: i was on staff at the time, and it was like hiding in a closet with no escape route while the serial killer is standing outside the door.

Q: So what was the final straw? Did your belief system collapse or was your exodus prompted more by your living conditions?

A: it was more of a gradual thing, but when i'd finally made the concrete decision to leave (and KNEW without a doubt that it was something i HAD to do) it was like that.
what started to really bother me was watching people who preached about treating others with kindness and understanding, berate, insult, condescend and demean the very people they were supposed to be helping. when that kind of behavior was turned on me, i started to notice just how strange things really were.

Q: Did you genuinely believe in it or were you just going along with it because your parents wanted you to?

And what made you stop believing?
A: at first, i was just doing it so i wouldn't get kicked out. after a while, i began to act like a scientologist, slowly, i realized that the only friends i had and the only people i talked to were scientologists. i didn't even see it happening. what made me stop believing was my observation of people doing things that went against what they were teaching. it didn't make sense.

Q: How feasible is it that someone could infiltrate the organisation? Like, could someone use doublethink skill and bullshit their way through the levels? Here's another one, if you were to go into it with an opposed mindset, would the "brainwashing" be effective? Could it turn someone's opinion around? Or does it only have a more pronounced effect on those who go into it with a more passive mindset?

Took a stress test once. Needle barely flickered. I have dry hands. The staff member who was administering the test was confused.
A: i honestly dont know, i think so, maybe. if they REALLY knew what they were doing and how to avoid certain things, and how to get around certain things. they would, honestly, have to be an ex member who was familiar with all things scientology, in order to really get away with it, or they'd be found out in short order.

i'm not sure what you mean by an "opposed mindset", but i'll take a stab at answering your question based on what i think you mean, which is would the brainwashing work if used with information that went against scientology? yes, the techniques are successful, and scarily so.
oh, i see now what you mean (lol) if someone were to go into scientology already opposed to it, would the brainwashing work? no, i dont think so. to a certain extent. if they allowed reasonable sounding people "explain" things to them to the point that it started making sense, then yes it would work. it definitely works more on people who WANT to believe.
yes, dry hands will diminish the needle response ;) the staff member should have recognized that.

Q: how come scientologists have a hate on for psychiatry? whats up with that?
A: they SAY that its because psychs are only interested in selling drugs to numb the minds of the population, in order to prevent enlightenment.

i think the real reason is that hubbard was terrified that they would disprove his "science". and the only way to establish yourself as the authority on a subject is to discredit the true authority on that subject.

Q: You mention sexual abuse within the church multiple times. If you don't mind answering...did this specifically have some weight in carrying your decision to leave the 'church'?
A: the closest thing that i can describe as a personal experience, that i know for a fact is not uncommon, was i was forced to get an abortion when i got pregnant because "it would interfere with my duties as a staff member". however, i have heard and read many accounts of sexual abuses within the sea org between superior officers and their subordinates.

Q: Sorry if this has already been asked but - what is your biggest regret?
A: that i was unable to see it sooner and possibly help my family before it was too late. i lost everything when i left. i've had to rebuild my life from the ground up, without the love and support of my friends and family that i once knew. i was completely alone, it was awful. i regret not being able to help the ones i love.

































 

Boson Wog Stark

Patron Meritorious
A: Our marketing surveys tend to find that most people don't think we are evil- they just don't know anything about us, or have never heard of us at all. There is a lot of negative stuff on the internet, but they really are a very loud minority.

No, it's not about the money at all, but their marketing surveys tend to find... :omg:

In the acronyms of Scientology's great leader, YS, YS, YS, YS, YS.

I find most of the answers to be mind numbing. It is carefully crafted bullshit to counter any conceivable and intelligent criticism of Scientology. Parts of it are so false and absurd that it is infuriating. For example, Hubbard's great attention to the scientific method in researching Dianutty? Please!
 

FlunkYou

Patron with Honors
Q: what kinds of people are in your chirch
A: Every type of person imaginable, except for complete criminals. They couldn't last very long

Umm, Wheezy Miscavige is going on 40 years now. I'd say they could last a long, LONG time.
 

Smurf

Gold Meritorious SP
I like this one best but I'm a [STRIKE]bit of a pervert[/STRIKE] reddit user: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/oshzh/iama_scifagraised_female_pornstar_ama/

The pornstar (according to Porn Wiki) is Desire Leana Marina Robart. I assume Craig is her father; he's a FZ. She & Craig are FB friends with Indies & FZs. She's a very beautiful young woman.

https://www.facebook.com/Sublimaze

http://www.instasugar.com/i/dezsezwut

https://www.facebook.com/craig.robart

(The Porn Wiki has a very explicit history on her porn career, but I'm not going to post the link. You can Google it if you want),

Craig repairs e-meters. http://www.linkedin.com/pub/craig-robart/4/24A/349
 
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