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'The Path' Creator Refutes Scientology Comparisons

Discussion in 'Movies, Plays, and Documentaries about Scientology' started by Anonycat, Jan 10, 2016.

  1. Anonycat

    Anonycat Crusader

    I can't believe it's not scientology! At the new peak of public interest in learning about the cult, a new show appears. But sorry, it's NOT scientology!
  2. Purple Rain

    Purple Rain Crusader

    I think they have to say it isn't based on Scientology, but, yeah, coincidence much!
  3. Cat Daddy

    Cat Daddy Silver Meritorious Patron

  4. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Newsday: ‘The Path’ review: Aaron Paul of ‘Breaking Bad’ in Hulu’s new what-if series

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    “The Path” is a grim unburdening, all right, but also that what-if series in search of deeper moorings, and a deeper meaning. Scientology is so thinly disguised here that the Meyerists may as well be called “Scientologists.” The uncanny resemblance serves only as a distraction, or perhaps false promise: Is this a takedown or exploration? Maybe neither, or more likely both, but as an operating principle for an entire series, that gets unwieldy fast. You are asked to relate to characters who are also delusional, probably dangerous, which induces vertigo followed by a shrug: Why bother?

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  5. Lavalyte

    Lavalyte Patron with Honors

    It's probably like scientology like any cult is like scientology, or like scientology is like any other cult. They all share similarities.
  6. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    The Oregonian: Hulu's cult drama 'The Path' may not convert you, but the acting's inspired

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    Anyone who's seen "Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief," which aired on HBO, will already be drawing comparisons between Meyerism and Scientology. "The Path" makes an obvious gesture at dismissing that when FBI agents make a clunky reference to the cult they're tracking not being Scientology.

    You don't have to be a student of controversial religions, though, to find Dancy's performance riveting. Shorn of his "Hannibal" halo of curls, Dancy's Cal has a tight mouth, and careful, over-enunciated diction that recalls Tom Cruise's pro-Scientology appearances.

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  7. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Hulu’s ‘The Path’ Is Totally About Scientology

    Hulu’s ‘The Path’ Is Totally About Scientology, But That’s Not What Makes It So Compelling.

    Flavorwire: Hulu’s ‘The Path’ Is Totally About Scientology, But That’s Not What Makes It So Compelling

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    The creator of Hulu’s The Path, playwright and former Parenthood writer Jessica Goldberg, insists her show is not about Scientology.

    That’s true, up to a point. The “movement” known simply as Meyerism, after its founder, is smaller and earthier than Scientology. There are no Celebrity Centers, no huge, tacky buildings erected confrontationally in major cities. Meyerism is a humbler faith, headquartered at rural compounds and mountain outposts in San Diego, upstate New York, and Peru. Its members are strict vegetarians; its “gatherings” look like old-school revival meetings, not the blinged-out Illuminati summits of David Miscavige. And in a line that says, “Are you happy now, Legal?!,” one FBI agent even brings up the S-word only for the other to deny the comparison.

    But The Path is a show about cult psychology, and as the richest, most famous, and longest-lasting faith to emerge from midcentury America’s frantic search for meaning before we learned to channel our spiritual panic into more capitalistic, and thus more palatable, enterprises like yoga and the modern tech industry, Scientology is an undeniable influence. On their climb up “The Ladder” to spiritual enlightenment, Meyerists are divided into numbered “rungs” that essentially correspond to clearance levels; by the time a member has earned their right to advance, they’re immersed enough that they’re primed to accept whatever improbable revelation awaits on the other side, whether it’s about thetans or the healing properties of ayahuasca. Meyerists gauge their spiritual states using pseudoscientific machines that look like a cross between Scientologist “auditing” tools and a game of Operation. And because this is a prestige drama, and the first attempt at one from a growing streaming service at that, there’s a lingering sense that Meyerism’s outward expressions of peace and acceptance might belie a less forgiving, and more violent, attitude towards those who cross its invisible lines.

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  8. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    The Path nails it.

    The Playlist - Review: Hulu's Compelling Cult Drama 'The Path' Starring Aaron Paul, Hugh Dancy & Michelle Monaghan

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    Indeed, the Meyerists don’t like the label “cult,” though their rules make it difficult to operate outside of the group. Very much like Scientology, which the show’s writers were clearly influenced by, faith is measured by how far up the ladder you’ve ascended, or how many rungs (Rs) you’ve climbed in your spiritual education (not unlike OTR levels). A process known as Unburdening is akin to Auditing, which through the process of a confessional, negative energy and emotions are expelled. E-meter like devices are used to stimulate health, those outside the group are designated IS (ignorant systemite) or if you leave the group, you’re a Denier (again, not unlike a Suppressive Person). And this latter category is most threatening to Eddie, because if you’re a Denier, all contact with Meyerist friends and family is immediately severed.

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  9. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    USA Today: Aaron Paul loses his religion in Hulu's 'The Path'

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    In the Scientology-like religion, "if you have any sort of doubt, you’re a nonbeliever, and are considered weak and thrown out to the curb by the ones you love," Paul says. "He's extremely afraid to be transparent with his family because he knows he will no longer have them anymore. He doesn’t want to lie to (them), but he feels that he must in order to keep them close."

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  10. ILove2Lurk

    ILove2Lurk Lisbeth Salander

    Is Hulu a free or subscription streaming service? Anyone? :hattip:
  11. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter


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    Here’s one way to stay engaged during the sedately paced cult-escape drama The Path: Count all the similarities between Meyerism, the restrictive religion at the show’s center, and Scientology. Though creator Jessica Goldberg dismisses comparisons between her fictional faith and L. Ron Hubbard’s movement, the Hulu series, which debuts March 30, does little to disguise its influences. Scientology’s E-meters and audits are refashioned into “em-machines” and “unburdens,” Hubbard’s Bridge modified slightly into Meyer’s “Ladder,” and nonbelievers amended from S.P.’s (suppressive persons) to “I.S.’s” (ignorant systemites). Most relevantly to The Path’s characters, Meyerism defectors (like those of many other cults) are cut off from their families, who are then encouraged to believe that the separation of, say, parents from their children contributes to “the greater good.”

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  12. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  13. Victoria

    Victoria Patron Meritorious


    I dont see the similarity.

    Those db's only got a ladder, we've got an entire bridge you're gonna need to go ahead and buy.:biggrin:

    Does HULU roll these all out at once like a Netflix series, or it's a weekly thing?

    Im watching the one about time travel and Kennedy assassination 11-22-63. And it's one per week, but they're nice and long. If this is any measure of the overall quality of these new HULU shows, then they're top notch. It's well done and sticking to the original book.
  14. Jump

    Jump Operating teatime

    From the above excerpt:

    "Systemite" will ring true with members from another cult 'The Children of God' aka David Berg's 'The Family' and its offshoots. The program probably has subtle references to multiple cult groups. Good on them for doing their homework.
  15. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    10 reasons The Path is definitely about Scientology

    10 reasons The Path is definitely about Scientology.

    She Knows - The Path: I don't care what producers say, this show is about Scientology


    1. The dangers of questioning authority

    2. Spiritual development involves a climb

    3. The stages of the climb

    4. Don't trust the charismatic second-in-command

    5. Escape from the pain, escape from the past

    6. Job creation keeps people involved

    7. Movement is small but worldwide

    8. Giving back to the world

    9. Judging the outside

    10. Leaving is harder than you think

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    The first two episodes of The Path are now on Hulu! New episodes will premiere on Hulu each Wednesday.

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  16. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    "[M]y recollections of Going Clear helped me catch on to certain plot developments in The Path more quickly."

    Toronto Sun: Aaron Paul, Hugh Dancy and Michelle Monaghan set foot upon 'The Path'

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    It wasn't too long ago that I saw the 2015 documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief. So it still is fairly fresh in my mind.

    If you've seen Going Clear, and then you watch The Path, I think you'd have to be trying really, really hard not to notice some similarities, or at least some familiar situations. In fact, my recollections of Going Clear helped me catch on to certain plot developments in The Path more quickly.

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  17. Francois Tremblay

    Francois Tremblay Patron with Honors

    I can see how they could deny the comparison. It's clear that, superficially, Meyerism is nothing like Scientology: it's a rural, family-oriented, more traditional sort of cult. As far as we know, there's no whacky sci-fi involved. But at a deeper level, there are obvious parallels. They both have integrated New Age elements. Going up the ladder v going up the bridge, with numbered levels. Cult leaders in seclusion who only communicate to the outside world through their trusted lieutenant (Cal / Miscavige). After being accused of marital infidelity, Eddie has to go through what can honestly only be described as a grueling, two-weeks sec check. Instruments measuring mental states (Meyer Machine / e-meter). All of these are pretty dang specific and not really part of general cult culture.
  18. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Last edited: Apr 11, 2016
  19. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Mike Rinder on the similarities between The Path and Scientology

    Mike Rinder on the similarities between The Path and Scientology.

    Mike Rinder: The Path

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    I just finished watching the last episode of season one of The Path on Hulu.

    This is a very well scripted, acted, shot, edited and scored series. But more importantly, it is the best portrayal I have ever seen of the prison of the mind that entraps those in cults. It is extremely difficult to understand why people remain in a cult for anyone who has not experienced it themselves. This show portrays it accurately – the torment and anguish that those with doubts go through, the threat of losing loved ones, the deceit and false hope that everything will turn out to be true. It is difficult to explain, but when you experience it through the characters in this show it becomes much easier to grasp.

    For those who have been in a fundamentalist organization, it may be difficult to watch as it cuts very close to the bone. But it may also give you some insight – I know it did for me.

    Jessica Goldberg, the creator and writer of this show claims it has nothing to do with scientology. That is very difficult for me to believe, given the show has

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  20. Hypatia

    Hypatia Pagan

    Let's see. The Path has disconnection, and as was previously mentioned here- those funny meter contraptions, unburdening, and calling non believers ISes. The 14 day in house stay that comes off like a combo of isolation watch and gang bang sec check. The rungs on the ladder. The reverence for those who got to the higher rungs. The coup. The sick founder.

    Oh, gee. Nothing in common with da cherch. Oh noooo....