The ‘Cult’ of Scientology
Is Scientology a 'Cult'?
“If you wish to converse with me, define your terms” Voltaire
I recently had a conversation with a cousin of mine who referred to my religion as a cult. I was quite taken aback, a little ticked off at her. She is a decent human being but tends to believe some nasty rumours about what my religion is and does.
I have been involved with this organization for over 50 years. I have a lot of friends that are also part of this and most of them are pretty normal. Most. They have families, work hard and just want to get along in life like pretty much most people in the world.
I’ve heard comments like, ‘It’s not a religion.’ or ‘They believe in aliens.’ You know, Scientology.
Those comments are kind of meaningless. The people that make those statements, I believe are just trying to make Scientology sound weird. Most of the key religions have some pretty weird stuff in their texts.
There was a TV show and has been a movie, ‘exposing’ Scientology. My sister pointed out that is like going to the Gestapo of the Nazi regime to ask their opinion of the Jews.
In this world of instant gratification may younger people don’t go past the surface. They won’t do due diligence, proper research. Sorry, not just young people. My cousin is 70+ and won’t take a proper look.
I have this friend in Calgary, we were sitting around chatting. I thought he knew that I was a Scientologist. We had chatted a couple of times a month for several years, and knew each other quite well. Somehow the subject came up and I mentioned that I was a Scientologist. He looked at me and then looked away for a good couple of minutes. Didn’t say a word for that time; two minutes is a long time. He then turned to me, smiled, and said ‘OK’. Then we continued our conversation. He basically tried to align the data that he had about Scientology with what he knew about me. And that was all it took for him to throw out the false information that he’d heard about my religion. We are still very good friends.
Some people can do this easily and quickly. Look at two bits of information and figure out which is true and which is false. Or maybe it is somewhere in between. Others have a hard time reconciling. They will like me as I am, hopefully, a fairly decent human being, but cannot fit that with the fact that I’m a Scientologist. The horror!
I hear some people calling my religion a cult. The problem here is the definition of terms. Read the Voltaire quote at the beginning of this article. What exactly do you mean by ‘cult’ when you accuse my religion. Per most definitions of the word ‘cult’, Scientology is no different than Christianity or Judaism, or Buddhism or any other mainstream religion.
The definitions, referring to something like Scientology, Christianity or other religions, generally speak of a belief system, religious rites and a deity. In Scientology, we have a belief system, sort of, we do have marriage rites and such, but the concept of a deity is left up to the individual.
There is a concept that is promoted in Scientology that ‘what is true for you is what you have experienced to be true for yourself’ - this concept is attributed to the Buddha. You can’t force belief. If it works for you, great. All is good. If not, well, that is your observation, your choice.
I have very good friends that are not Scientologists. I have very good friends that are Scientologists. I have very good friends that are no longer Scientologists.
BUT, if you attack me and/or mine, don’t expect me to be your friend. I have another relative who continually badmouths my religion online and to friends. Then complains to the same that I won’t hang out and be pleasant to him. I really don’t want toxic people in my life.
Most governments of the world have acknowledged Scientology as a bona fide religion. Religious leaders throughout the world have acknowledged Scientology as a bona fide religion. So, who are you that has not studied any religion, much less Scientology, to sit in judgement.
My wife, who is not a Scientologist, says about Scientologists: “they seem pretty normal to me".
Scientology organizations have been raided by government agencies around the world. Canada, France, Spain, Germany, the USA to name a few. These agencies, were always attempting to shut the Church down. When the charges go to court, the Church wins. In the decades of raids and attempts to hinder the Church of Scientology, no organizations have been shut down as a result. Nobody is that good at hiding stuff. Police organizations have had spies working in various Church of Scientology Organizations around the world, discovering no crimes. The crimes just aren’t there.
I know people that would hesitate to criticize a muslim as afraid of being called a ‘-phobe’ of some sort but has no issue getting on the bandwagon against Scientology. Just because it seems to be the thing to do. “My friends hate that religion so, as I don’t want to rock the boat, I will as well.”
Even Kanye West defends Scientology with respect to people just getting on the bandwagon and not thinking for themselves. I have no idea if he is a fan or not but he at least defends the idea that one should have the right his or her own beliefs!
I really thought by this time, religious persecution would be a thing of the past.
I know people that believe that it is OK to drive stoned on marijuana and think that I should not educate children on the dangers of pot. Then they would attack someone for their religious beliefs.
So, again, if you want to discuss the subject of Scientology, let us first define our terms. If you are going to call it a cult, then define exactly what you mean by that.
Similarly, I was having a discussion with someone regarding marijuana. It wasn’t going anywhere until I realized, that, though I considered marijuana a drug, which, by definition, it is, this person completely disagreed that it was a drug. As a result, the conversation was doomed. The person refused the definition.
So, calm down, and get on the same page.
If you really want to know about the subject, instead of asking the Nazis of the world, go to the source of the subject and find out…: