When we think of religion, we typically think of Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, and other major religions. But what about newer religions like Wicca, or Scientology?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMDGikPmEyw&feature=player_embedded

This four part BBC documentary is a second attempt by a man to uncover the secrets of the Church of Scientology, this time with the help of ex-members.

And the second, below, is a shorter compilation of stories of the horrors of Scientology and pretty much outlines *my* view of it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCGP-0545EU

What do you think? A force for good or a frightening cult?

Why am I frightened? Because if they can do the things that they're accused of doing, it's reminiscent of the Catholic church during atrocities like the Inquisition just in how many horrible things they're permitted to get away with.

"Billion year contracts"?

What the hell?

Tags: church, cruise, davis, scientologist, scientology, tom, tommy

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That's good to hear. There's a church in Pittsburgh near where I used to live and there were frequent mass demonstrations against them, but everybody wore masks to make themselves anonymous because, as it goes, demonstrators share stories of scientologist 'businessmen' looking guys coming to their doorstep trying to convince them to stop speaking out against the church, and it's very scary. Some people even disappear (there's a site with an extensive. . . like, mile long list of people who have disappeared in connection to them).
Cult, definitely.
Frankly I am mystified that in the face of 1 Billion Roman Catholics supporting pedo-priests that some spend more elapsed time choosing a really good food processor. Scientology is "round off error" in my list of unsatisfactory things.

My last three things I worry about:
100000001. Navel Lint
100000002. Scientology
100000003. That burst of static that comes from my cheap computer speakers occasionally.
They don't frighten me any more than any other marginalized delusion. Unless these delusions are a direct threat to me, they don't concern me too much. It is when delusion becomes systematic and widespread (like the major religions mentioned), that I am more concerned. They affect almost everyone to one degree or another.
Tom Cruise is rumored to get payed for all the appearances he does.
Not really scary..I just pity them. It's a cult that uses popular icons to try to rope you in. anyone dumb enough to believe in the actual teachings are certainly not smart enough to be a threat to me.
I think you hit the nail almost on the head, VFJ. Christianity, in speaking about its affect on society in general, frightens me and always has. But I think that it is slowly losing its footing in society with the rising preference of secularism in a lot of places. The reason Scientology frightens me is because it is an immediate threat to families who are roped into it. Not only do they take absolutely everything but the clothes on their backs from them, but they intimidate them, follow them, surveil them, share their personal secrets with other members of the cult, starve them and deny them medical intervention for some victims, and for others, apparently directly murder them (including a man in one of their residencies being put into a boiling hot bathtub, where the church claimed he 'drowned', but his lungs were not filled with water, nor was his face beneath the surface to inhale it anyway; but he was boiled alive). Or the many suicides that occur when a family member involved will run into enough debt and find no more reason to live--- or when they completely lose contact with their families by force of the church, including their own children, for decades or a lifetime.

I think I feel very passionately that the church needs to be dismantled and batshit crazy creeps like Tom Cruise need to be institutionalized.
I dont think Tom is that crazy. The guy just has issues with religion and finds Dianetics to be helpful in his life. He is no different then the millions who raise there hands to the sky expecting favors from a God that isn't there.

i do find it odd that Issac Hayes joined the church a relatively health guy and was dead 2 years later, and broke. Poor Chef
That actually isn't odd at all if you see the video I posted with black and white text on it. Also, Tom Cruise has conducted an interview in the past explaining such amazing lunatic theories as, "When you drive past an accident as a Scientologist, and you know you are the only one who can help that person. . ." -- Yeah, not paramedics. Not at all.
It's not a force for good--it's a force for profit. It's a corporation that is particularly devious and unethical. Possibly one of the most unethical companies ever.

To some degree, it's an expected result of the system--you give special privileges to churches, and you have populations of people that blindly follow self-help gurus in droves, and you have standard corporate exploits with the legal system, etc. and the result is Scientology.

Note that I'm not against corporations, just unethical ones.
It is frightening, and I can't understand why so many celebrities buy into it. Literally. I was shocked to learn that Christopher Reeve, a man I admire for the social issues he became a voice for, was a scientologist.
They don't frighten me because I have guns. If any of them threaten me, I will threaten them back. If they try to follow through, I will shoot them. Violence isn't the answer to most things, but it IS the answer to dangerous bullies.

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