Since some of the materials which describe the $cientology cult could be
considered to be copywritten materials, I have censored myself and The
Skeptic Tank by deleting any and all possible text files which describes
the cult's hidden mythologies. I have elected to quote just a bit of the
questionable text according to the "Fair Use" legal findings afforded to
those who report. - Fredric L. Rice, The Skeptic Tank, 09/Sep/95
From news.interserv.net!news.sprintlink.net!uunet!in1.uu.net!news.3do.com!dragon!jjh Mon Jul 17 09:49:16 1995
From: email@example.com (Joel Hanes)
Subject: Re: Answers from Dan...
Date: 14 Jul 1995 06:35:17 GMT
Organization: University of Okoboji Perloo & Glee Club
Summary: Dan asks for a statement of my religious ideas; I respond
Keywords: delusion manipulation predation evil
Xref: news.interserv.net alt.religion.scientology:75425 alt.atheism:136412 talk.religion.misc:67804 alt.recovery.religion:4701
firstname.lastname@example.org (Dan Sigal ) asks:
> I have always enjoyed responding to intelligent queries about my
> religious beliefs. What I find interesting in the lack of statements by
> the "antis" what their beliefs are. Can anyone recall a sincere post
> what an anti's religious beliefs were? Nope.
I grew up in a large Iowa Presbyterian congregation, and was
active in church functions.
My childhood pastor is still among my parents' closest friends.
His successor became my friend: a brilliant man who managed
to communicate to me and to my confirmation class his love of
the Bible and of his work, and his joy in his God.
As a teenager, I was very concerned with religious matters;
my parents led our church's youth group, and I read a bunch
of religious history, and the Bible straight through.
I went off to a beautiful church summer camp for a couple
weeks each summer for three years. A large portion of the
staff were former overseas missionaries, from the more
pious and fundamentalist arm of the Presbyterian church.
Gradually, I began to see that some of these people used their
religion to relieve themselves of the burden of independent
judgement, of the necessity for thought. My disillusionment
came to a crux when the leader of a study group presented Genesis
as straightforward factual narrative rather than an allegory --
I responded by pointing out that the ground beneath
his feet was glacial till, composed largely of rounded igneous
cobbles and quartz sand, yet three hundred miles from the nearest
outcrop of crystalline rock, and in a state where flat-laying
sedimentary rocks lie a thousand meters thick over the
I was shocked when he, and a majority of the staff,
refused even to discuss how such evidence of glaciation
could be reconciled with a young earth and a Noachian
This stance felt to me, then, like intellectual dishonesty,
like lying, like evil. It still does.
This was a crisis; I was deeply committed to religion as
an answer to the sense of the sacred I found within myself.
I prayed; I studied devotional texts and religious writings.
I asked God to come into my heart and help me to know
Him as a daily fact.
I never felt an answer. Others say that they have, and
how can I say they have not? I can only report that I spent
a terrible year asking God into my life, into my heart,
and got no reply.
Over the years, my revulsion for self-deception has grown,
as has my perception of it in many of the more pious sorts
of religionists. I came to see that unthinking piety could
be used, and often was used, to justify acts that I thought
clearly evil -- especially hatred of the Other, of those
unlike ourselves. It amazes me to find this common thread
in the statments of the growing "religious right" in the U.S.;
a group ostensibly devoted to the teachings of someone who
taught tolerance and _love_ of those others.
So, today, I am an atheist. I find no evidence in myself or
in the world that any numinous being exists or has ever
ObScientology: It seems pretty clear to me, based on what
I know if its doctrines and practices, that Scientology
is based almost entirely on surrender of one's own
judgement and thought to the "org", (not to mention one's
money), and on deliberate self-deception.
I'm sure that the "Church" includes among its adherents
many people of good faith, innocent of the manipulation
and naked greed that I think has characterized the organization
from its inception. Perhaps Mr. Sigal is among them.
Nevertheless, I now agree with those who compare Scientology
to Orwellian double-think;
the simile seems to me more than apt; almost exact.
The actions of the "Church" disclosed on alt.religion.scientology
and in press accounts seem to me actively evil. The guile
and duplicity of the Scientologist postings in a.r.s and
on AOL are shocking, and among the most deluded I've seen in
eight years of reading the Net.
As I've implied above, I think the Christian God is a
most improbable person, and I don't believe in Him.
However, should I be wrong, should there be a final trump
and a judgement day awaiting us all, I feel certain that
L. Ron Hubbard and much of the the heirarchy of the "Church"
of Scientology will be among the damned.
They prey on the weak.
They manipulate the strong to make them weak.
Their religion is for sale, and only for sale;
it is never given, only sold.
I've read L. Ron Hubbard's "scriptures". (Thanks, Scamizdat!)
I find the ideas revolting. The very wording is ugly.
Cross-posted from alt.religion.scientology to
alt.atheism, talk.religion.misc, alt.recovery.religion
People in these groups: _PLEASE_ read a.r.s for a couple days.
It's a burden, it's a high-volume group, but it's important.
Exposing evil is everyone's business.
Followups directed back to a.r.s.