Why Are Scientologists So Immature ?

mockingbird

Silver Meritorious Patron
Well honestly lots of people of different political parties and groups get cult followings to varying degrees. I had a guy tell me followers of Noam Chomsky have a cult mindset and some do. Some just blindly believe and follow absolutely everything he says with no independent critical thinking. That's a problem no matter what ideology or dogma of doctrine you promote or follow.
 

TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
Well honestly lots of people of different political parties and groups get cult followings to varying degrees. I had a guy tell me followers of Noam Chomsky have a cult mindset and some do. Some just blindly believe and follow absolutely everything he says with no independent critical thinking. That's a problem no matter what ideology or dogma of doctrine you promote or follow.
Damn, so that must be why the Cult of Common Sense has so few followers!
 

Dave B.

Maximus Ultimus Mostimus
Damn, so that must be why the Cult of Common Sense has so few followers!

I think it's because people don't like thinking. it's hard.

If they have a "fearless leader" whose opinions or judgment they trust (and the bar is usually pretty low) that frees them up from having to think and make those adult decisions. They can just go on automatic with all the other people on automatic - it reinforces itself and feels like the most natural thing in the world. Noble even. "We're saving the world!"

Henry Ford had a quote regarding this: "Thinking is hard work that's why so few people do it."
 

TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
I think it's because people don't like thinking. it's hard.

If they have a "fearless leader" whose opinions or judgment they trust (and the bar is usually pretty low) that frees them up from having to think and make those adult decisions. They can just go on automatic with all the other people on automatic - it reinforces itself and feels like the most natural thing in the world. Noble even. "We're saving the world!"

Henry Ford had a quote regarding this: "Thinking is hard work that's why so few people do it."
Wanted to paste a link to HCOPL October 29, 1971 "Leadership" but couldn't find one - darn! We all know "Responsibility of Leaders" but "Leadership" is another slightly more eclectic revelation from Dear Leader. Gads, can you believe after all these decades I still use valuable memory capacity for this dreck?
 

I told you I was trouble

Suspended animation
Why Are Scientologists So Immature ?

I just listened to the third episode of the Opening Minds podcast.

In it Jon Atack and Christian Szurko discuss something completely relevant to the state of mind of Scientologists and what it is like to leave Scientology. Chris Shelton left Scientology and had to deal with a significant obstacle.

There is an idea worth examination to me which they discussed. There is a hypothesis that cult members enter a kind of infantilized state in their relationships to the cult leader. That's a fancy way to say they are emotionally at the level of a pre-adolescent in their submissive infatuation with the cult leader.

They are like children that believe everything their parents say and see no flaws in their parents. By thirteen most of us lose the rose colored glasses and rebel against our parents. Scientologists assume the state of mind from before this period and it defines their mindset.

I have seen folks who are frustrated in dealing with Scientologists repeatedly describe it as similar to talking to nine and ten year olds. Unfortunately they are not wrong.


The exit point from Scientology can lead in several directions. A person can stay in that cult mindset and cult hop from group to another. That is a way to stay like a young child and seem a new parent to guide you.


We question why some ex Scientologists have embraced conspiracy theories or become Trump supporters who see no flaws in his character or behavior in any way. They are simply infatuated with him, not romantically but like the child entirely dependent on a parent for survival.


The other route a Scientology cult member can take is not perfect either. It's like hitting your thirteenth birthday emotionally and throwing off the rose colored glasses regarding Hubbard. You usually have a ton of false beliefs from Scientology and enough mental and emotional baggage to spend several lifetimes unpacking.


You may have an instinctive or well defined sense of weakness in your thinking that contributed to your being duped in Scientology. It's sometimes something that becomes a desire for information on cults, influence, Scientology in particular or critical thinking or other subjects. In part it depends on your own experiences and the information you encounter. Some people just are satisfied to believe Hubbard and Miscavige are evil people who lied.


But the important thing to me is dealing with whatever a person personally needs to and dealing with facing the reality of having the emotional maturity of a thirteen year old despite being forty something or fifty something or whatever age you are.


I have seen information from people that deal with drug addiction and describe clients as not progressing in maturity while using and being frozen at a young age emotionally. Similarly in Scientology I was addicted to the euphoric trance states I could enter on course. It was a worry free state that I interpreted as miraculous and enlightened. In retrospect it appears to just be total obedient submission to the authority of Hubbard.


Spending years chasing a high from putting your judgement entirely under the control of another person's will is not a way to mature as a person. I recently asked several questions. One was why ex Scientologists fight and argue so much. Another was why do many become conspiracy theorists and get into other cultic relationships, including Trump supporters who see him as an infallible hero, and in some cases a messianic savior.


I think a viable answer may be that they upon exiting Scientology have to deal with growing up. I have seen lots of information on attachment styles and that cults have unhealthy attachment as the norm. So the ex cult member has two strikes against them, especially if they were raised in the cult.


They are thrust into the world as thirteen year olds emotionally - at best - and have spent years or their whole lives in relationships with unhealthy attachment as the only thing they know.


They can face an uphill battle to grow up and form and maintain healthy relationships or revert to immature and unhealthy attachment in other cults or cult like behaviors.


I've seen a few people getting a bit culty over the years, treating someone who posts here like a replacement guru, appearing to be infatuated and hanging on every post he made. It was tragic but they eventually snapped right out of it ... or took it elsewhere.

The only other person I've seen acting that way around here is you.

You were convinced that Arnie had all the answers and attempted to educate us all by heavily promoting them here along with your own extensive theories. It didn't go well so you eventually stormed off after creating a lot of drama on one of the political threads.

If you want to be here to discuss things with like minded people (as opposed to just slamming down your opinions and theories) I'm quite sure that you will be warmly received. If you want to discuss politics there are threads where you can do that too ... but there will be discussion, lots of laughter and healthy disagreement ... because most around here don't seem to fit your brutal assessment (above) and are neither looking for approval or for a new guru.

Welcome back @mockingbird ... I hope you stay this time and have some laughs along the way.


:gathering:
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
Well honestly lots of people of different political parties and groups get cult followings to varying degrees. I had a guy tell me followers of Noam Chomsky have a cult mindset and some do. Some just blindly believe and follow absolutely everything he says with no independent critical thinking. That's a problem no matter what ideology or dogma of doctrine you promote or follow.
I think that we need to define what we mean when we use the word "cult" (concept).
Do we mean just a group that we consider to have weird ideas?

I prefer to use the word "cult" to mean direct destructive behavior control on members and NOT just weird ideas.

For example, I have many relatives who consider themselves to be Christians but none are Jehovah's Witnesses.
(I still think they have many weird ideas.)
However, I don't think that they are members of some cult.

(BTW, I am an atheist.)
 
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TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
I think that we need to define what we mean when we use the word "cult" (concept).
Do we mean just a group that we consider to have weird ideas?

I prefer to use the word "cult" to mean direct destructive behavior control on members and NOT just weird ideas.

For example, I have many relatives who consider themselves to be Christians but none are Jehovah's Witnesses.
(I still think they have many weird ideas.)
However, I don't think that they are members of some cult.

(BTW, I am an atheist.)
I've been hearing "cult" popping up in political discourse a lot lately from both sides so I'm not surprised to see this make it's way into threads here. Maybe it is from Leah Remini's Aftermath popularity and a general increase in awareness about cults in general due to the collective work of so many others and recent TV programming. Maybe it is unfortunate for Scientology that use of the word has gained such a strong resurgence in the vernacular because Scientology has become so synonymous with cult that now people just skip use of the word cult and use "Scientology" to convey the point, or, it will benefit Scientology by getting over used and devalued as a generic pejorative. As of this writing I'm going to go with...not helping Scientology.

That being said, I also think there is a legitimate place for discussion about cult like behavior in politics but I don't think that is what I am seeing in the media. This is more like good ol mud slinging and racing to play the Alinsky card first.

I just ran a Google search for: "cult" republican democrat - for results in the past 24 hours, and here is a screen capture of the first page:

Screen Shot 2018-06-16 at 10.13.02 PM.jpg
 

TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
I rest my case.

Scientology = Cult and Cult = Scientology in popular culture, not the coolest religion, epic SMP fail.

First one to position the other side with Scientology wins!

http://www.newsweek.com/samantha-bee-invites-brainwashed-nra-members-join-scientology-instead-836420

Samantha Bee has a solution to defeating the National Rifle Association: persuade its members to join the Church of Scientology instead.

After a month-long hiatus, the late-night comedian returned to Full Frontal With Samantha Bee Wednesday. And she took aim at the NRA, saying the gun group and the Church of Scientology are two very similar, very weird American organizations. The difference is one is armed with assault rifles. The NRA also has a bit more political power, what with half of Washington in its pockets. But when you strip away the politics, Bee argued, the NRA starts looking more and more like a cult.

"Most of us know the NRA as a lobbying group for gun manufacturers," said Bee, "but to its hardcore member it's more than that." The comedian conceded that gun culture and Scientology aren't exactly the same—"for one, Scientology's got way betters songs"—but she highlighted a few key similarities. "Both of these cults are based on fanciful myths," Bee argued. "One says that 75 million years ago an intergalactic warlord nuked billions of people in volcanoes, and then there's the really crazy myth that guns have nothing to do with gun violence."

 

mockingbird

Silver Meritorious Patron
I think that we need to define what we mean when we use the word "cult" (concept).
Do we mean just a group that we consider to have weird ideas?

I prefer to use the word "cult" to mean direct destructive behavior control on members and NOT just weird ideas.

For example, I have many relatives who consider themselves to be Christians but none are Jehovah's Witnesses.
(I still think they have many weird ideas.)
However, I don't think that they are members of some cult.

(BTW, I am an atheist.)
When I use the word cult I use the definition Margaret Singer gave of a group that controls all of nearly all your decision making most often. As I wrote earlier the book The Discipling Dilemma by Flavil Yeakley has probably the best scientific evidence presented regarding cults shaping members be copies of the leader or founder. To be looser with this cults are groups in which members thunk, feel and behave in line with cultic doctrine.

If I followed Bernie Sanders and idealized him, lionized him, not necessarily overly worshipped him but saw his thinking as infallible and his ideology as indisputably sacred I would be a Bernie Sanders ' cultist. If you saw Bernie Sanders as doing nothing to encourage cult following from me or anyone else then you probably would see me as crazy.

If you saw Bernie Sanders as having classic cult leader behaviours and building a cult then I would be seen as just an exploited cult member in this example.

I don't think the ideas like whether a God exists or not or ancient miracles occurred or not makes a cult. Those ideas are irrelevant to the issue. A cult is a kind of group and we can look at families or one one relationships and understand that an abusive relationship is not the same as a healthy relationship. A family under the control of a predator isn't the same as a healthy family.

It's the same with a cult. Just as a Christian family can be a healthy family or be controlled by a predator so too can a Christian group be a healthy group or a cult. An atheist group likewise could be healthy or a cult.

Doctrine is sometimes irrelevant to whether a group is a cult of not, but not always. Lots of Christian doctrine in the old testament calls for obedience to rules. But many modern Christian sects largely ignore or cherry pick bits to emphasize. Many Catholics don't read the bible and seem guidance from priests.

You really have to look at the group closely to decide if a group is cultic and to what degree. Two groups can have the same doctrine but different leaders and degrees of abuse and control. A boy scout leader could be a totalitarian running a bunch of boy scouts as a small cult but usually that doesn't happen.

If you want more specific criteria for cults Robert Jay Lifton have us the eight criteria for thought reform and said if a group has six of the eight criteria you have a bona fide thought reform program in Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism.. Margaret Singer similarly have six confidence for thought reform in her own right in Cults In Our Midst. Daniel Shaw elaborated on the relationships in cults in Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation.
 

ThetanExterior

Gold Meritorious Patron
I think Veda made a very good point earlier that if you start talking about politics you lose half your audience.

I block all politics threads and I'm not American so I have no idea what Republicans and Democrats are. Who is Bernie Sanders? National Rifle Association? Why am I reading all this stuff in this thread?

I've already forgotten what the thread is about and I've lost interest in going back to find out.
 

mockingbird

Silver Meritorious Patron
You bring up an interesting and dangerous point. Scientology is generally not well understood by people but just made fun of. This leaves an opening for the term to be used so much it loses any strength.

Some concepts lose force over time. Vlad the Impaler was a feared leader that used horrific torture to murder many people. Over time that transformed into Dracula and now people don't fear the terror he once was. Fortunately he died long ago but Scientology is alive and if the name loses any sting some people may be vulnerable to recruitment. It could take five years or five decades.

It might not happen at all.I won't live long enough to see the final fate of Scientology, and it's extremely unlikely anyone alive today will be either. We just don't live long enough.
 

mockingbird

Silver Meritorious Patron
I rest my case.

Scientology = Cult and Cult = Scientology in popular culture, not the coolest religion, epic SMP fail.

First one to position the other side with Scientology wins!

http://www.newsweek.com/samantha-bee-invites-brainwashed-nra-members-join-scientology-instead-836420

Samantha Bee has a solution to defeating the National Rifle Association: persuade its members to join the Church of Scientology instead.

After a month-long hiatus, the late-night comedian returned to Full Frontal With Samantha Bee Wednesday. And she took aim at the NRA, saying the gun group and the Church of Scientology are two very similar, very weird American organizations. The difference is one is armed with assault rifles. The NRA also has a bit more political power, what with half of Washington in its pockets. But when you strip away the politics, Bee argued, the NRA starts looking more and more like a cult.

"Most of us know the NRA as a lobbying group for gun manufacturers," said Bee, "but to its hardcore member it's more than that." The comedian conceded that gun culture and Scientology aren't exactly the same—"for one, Scientology's got way betters songs"—but she highlighted a few key similarities. "Both of these cults are based on fanciful myths," Bee argued. "One says that 75 million years ago an intergalactic warlord nuked billions of people in volcanoes, and then there's the really crazy myth that guns have nothing to do with gun violence."

Samantha Bee is a comedian. She is not a lawmaker or cult expert. Her job is getting viewers, attention laughs. I don't see her as a serious or frankly educated person regarding cults.
 
We question why some ex Scientologists have embraced conspiracy theories or turn to diet and herbal supplements, and other "woo-woo" practices.

Fixed it for 'ya.

After so many "facts" that are unproven, unscientific and "just because LRH said so", I would think that ex-SCNists would go immediately to the other extreme. But perhaps they value the emotional comfort of "knowing" and of group agreement, and the "emotional trance states" they had while in.

I value the logic of western medicine, chemistry, physics and the like. It wasn't auditing that cured my Hodgkins Lymphoma in 2005, it was slow, careful advances in cancer medicine, pursued with the scientific method, peer reviewed research, studies, clinical trials, etc. It took decades, but the science behind it is valid and proven.

You lose half your audience by making this a political thread.

So true.
 
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TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
Samantha Bee is a comedian. She is not a lawmaker or cult expert. Her job is getting viewers, attention laughs. I don't see her as a serious or frankly educated person regarding cults.
She is a LIBERAL comedian and she epitomizes the state of political discourse:

You're a cult.

No, you're a cult!

Yeah, well I said you're a cult first.


Cult, cult, cult,cult,cult,cult,cult!

Your momma is a cult and I left my army boots under her bed!

Fuck you and the cult you rode in on!

That's enough, both of you are grounded!

Oh man, this is a cult.
Oh man, this is a cult.


_____
You gotta admit, "Cult" is getting tossed around pretty loosely lately. We can probably take some credit for that.
 
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DagwoodGum

Squirreling Dervish
If you want more specific criteria for cults Robert Jay Lifton have us the eight criteria for thought reform and said if a group has six of the eight criteria you have a bona fide thought reform program in Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism.. Margaret Singer similarly have six confidence for thought reform in her own right in Cults In Our Midst. Daniel Shaw elaborated on the relationships in cults in Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation.
What's it called when someone name drops what other "important and such smart" people have to say on every subject matter rather than disclosing what they themselves say from THEIR OWN point of view?
I'd much rather enjoy a good read from a person that owns their own perspective and declares it as such than to bore the living shit out of me with all these "he said's and she said's".
Usually when someone compulsively name drops it's to add a sense of legitimacy to and in lieu of their own perspectives, but this takes it to a whole new level. Some are afraid of possible backlash if they declare their own perspective so they speak vicariously through the mouths of "important sources", but it's such a cop out.
Reminds me of college lectures where one is forced by the curriculum to listen to this type of lecturer but I just listened enough to jot down what I thought he'd put on the exam and crammed on it just hours before. Never entered into my long term memory though as having a rather good short term memory helped me slide though...
 

TheOriginalBigBlue

Gold Meritorious Patron
What's it called when someone name drops what other "important and such smart" people have to say on every subject matter rather than disclosing what they themselves say from THEIR OWN point of view?
I'd much rather enjoy a good read from a person that owns their own perspective and declares it as such than to bore the living shit out of me with all these "he said's and she said's".
Usually when someone compulsively name drops it's to add a sense of legitimacy to and in lieu of their own perspectives, but this takes it to a whole new level. Some are afraid of possible backlash if they declare their own perspective so they speak vicariously through the mouths of "important sources", but it's such a cop out.
Reminds me of college lectures where one is forced by the curriculum to listen to this type of lecturer but I just listened enough to jot down what I thought he'd put on the exam and crammed on it just hours before. Never entered into my long term memory though as having a rather good short term memory helped me slide though...
Right on Dagwood!

If you review the OP, it is clearly a poorly veiled attempt to characterize Trump supporters as being susceptible to cult like indoctrination because they missed an important juncture in developing maturity - the implied corollary being that Hillary supporters matured normally and are therefore immune to cultish influences.

Unable to support this assertion, thread originator reverts to deflective rhetoric.

Shall we take up the Democrat Party platform point by point to explain the irrationality behind their thinking?

Case in point: The NRA was founded by former Union officers who wanted to address the problem of so many casualties in the Civil War attributable to poor marksmanship. Even in the 1800s the large population centers held anti-gun sentiments which could be later found in idealistic movements such as Neville Chamberlain's "Peace in our time". When war breaks out, it is the Churchills and people teaching our men, and now women, how to shoot who become the saviors of civilization and the Chamberlains are remembered for facilitating the invasion of Poland. While the NRA was shipping guns and home loaded ammo to Britain, the peacenicks wanted to negotiate their way out of the war.

But somehow regardless of the reality of history, the Dems perceive the NRA as a cult and themselves as emotionally and intellectually superior. They would have their own sons and daughters go to war never having handled a gun and the Second Amendment would guarantee the right to own and bear cell phones. The same cultural conflicts that existed between people from cities and people from rural America in the 1800s is much more solidified today and this can be seen in the maps of counties that voted for Trump or Hillary. The thing that defines this difference the most is cities rely upon government services more than rural areas. They have a vested interest in government expansion whereas government expansion is viewed as oppressive in rural America. Therefore, cities are predominantly Democrat and opposed to value systems associated with rural America such as firearms ownership. Do Hillary supporters think all of this through or are they only reacting to what they are being told? Something most people think of as being immature and culty.

If you can't support your argument based on reality then you resort to minimizing the other side by characterizing them as a cult. Samantha Bee's NRA skit is clever, funny, effective and rightfully capitalizes on the Scientology cult meme but it isn't intellectually honest and neither is this thread's OP.
 
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