Skip to comments.Ex-Scientologist Reveals Details Behind 'Dangerous Cult
Posted on 05/14/2010 9:45:04 AM PDT by Shimmer1
Most people know very little about Scientology aside from the fact that Tom Cruise, John Travolta and other celebrities are a part of it, and that it's had its fair share of controversy over the years. A new book is looking to pull back the curtain on the mysterious religion founded by L. Ron Hubbard, and the author certainly knows her stuff. Amy Scobee is a former Scientologist who was in the church for more than two decades, and worked in the all-important Celebrity Centers portion of the organization. In her just-released book, 'Scientology: Abuse at the Top,' Scobee details all of the troubling things she saw that made her flee what she once called her trusted religion, but now refers to as a "dangerous cult." Scobee spoke exclusively to PopEater over e-mail about her shocking book, her time with Tom Cruise and other Scientology bigwigs, and the (her words) brainwashing, systematic violence and slave labor camps she saw during her 27 years there.
(Excerpt) Read more at popeater.com ...
It is the cult of Øbama we really have to worry about...
Yes, Øbama is a more immediate threat, but Scn is very pernicious in it's own right.
by Walter Martin, Author
Ravi Zachiarias, Editor
The authoritative reference work on major cult systems for nearly forty years. Working closely together, Ravi Zacharias and Managing Editors Jill and Kevin Rische (daughter of Dr. Martin) have updated and augmented the work with new material. This book will continue as a crucial tool in countercult ministry and in evangelism for years to come. Among cults and religions included are: Jehovahs Witnesses, Mormonism, New Age Cults, the Unification Church, Bahai Faith, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and more.
I dated a scientologist in high school. Cute, but crazy as a loon. But, she was “top-heavy” ... so what did I care?
I’ve read they treat their celebrities different then they do the little people.
It's the gold standard for encyclopedic and very good information about cult groups.
Anyone engaged in something more than a casual interest in apologetics will discover an incredible value in Walter Martin's classic "The Kingdom of the Cults." This updated edition is similar in structure as earlier editions, but fairly acknowledges major changes in theology and activity in various religious groups. Intended for the thinking Christian and the open-minded nonChristian, Martin's book has continually challenged people to rely on Scripture for their theology.
This is an unusual book in that it is neither an evangelical or fundamentalism critique of those who disagree, but a deeper look at the histories, documents, arguments at groups in opposition to orthodoxy. I first read this skeptically, but was impressed by the immense research by Martin and his team of editors.
There is a dual functionality to "The Kingdom of the Cults." Not only does it explain the distinctives of groups such as the Jehovah Witnesses and the Church of the Latter Day Saints, but in doing so, it teaches Scriptural fundamentals of the Trinity, the deity of Christ, and provides direction for testing our own faith with the Bible. Martin's exposure of what the groups themselves are claiming will disturb many within the group as they discover the truth. He is quick to grant the strengths of a group, but points them to Scripture to make their own comparisons (as opposed to relying on Martin's views). He prefers the reader to think for himself, not content to depend on his book, or any other book but the Bible. This balance is rare in Christian literature, and a value in reading "The Kingdom of the Cults."
Martin provides a meaty analysis of all the major groups, as well as primary lines of thought within Protestant perspectives, and Roman Catholicism. Beyond specific groups, there is plenty of coverage of the general critical analysis on topics like mind control, apocalyptic cults, the impact of cults on the mission field, Eastern religions, and language and psychological issues.
He is sure to point out a group's popularity (like the fast growing LDS and Islam sects) doesn't make it truth, truth is not democratic.
Martin is bold to use the groups' own literature rather than hearsay, to prove his points. This has stirred controversy among those such as Muslim students, LDS laity and JW leadership who have not known of the difficult history of their church. He leaves room for the vagaries often existing when dependent on secondary sources.
This edition includes substantial portions of the refutations and other dialogues, providing the reader an idea of the response from the cult's leadership. Sadly, it shows that though the book is quickly disputed, none take Martin to task. In many cases, they agree, but are uncomfortable at the label 'cult.'
The bibliography is 27 pp strong, organized by topic and group. This is in addition to the 12-page Scripture Index.
"The Kingdom of the Cults" includes an appendix of several groups. For example, the Worldwide Church of God's full acceptance of the Trinity is explained, as well as the foundation for this significant move in their theology.
"The Kingdom of the Cults" also criticizes the Word of Faith movement. It is careful to show what this movement believes, and how it is not simply Pentecostalism under another name. "The Kingdom of the Cults" emphasizes "there are many sincere, born again believers within the movement" (Hank Hanagraaff).
I recommend "The Kingdom of the Cults" enthusiastically. Buy it, and read it contemplatively and compassionately as you discover what your neighbor might believe.
Best link, if you have questions about Scientology:
Yep. There's a policy letter detailing the need to coddle them.
There are even "Celebrity Centres" set aside to cater to the special needs of celebrities world wide (and to insulate them from the crap that goes on in your local org).
Similar story. I was dating an absolute dream fox who was basically non religious as far as I knew.
Several months into the relationship, her parents converted to Scientology. They tried to enlist her in the cult but she resisted at first. Eventually she attended a couple of their "ceremonies" with her parents.
Within about three weeks after that her personality, her passion for life and her interest in me, or anything else, changed dramatically.
She became increasingly distant and finally just disappeared. Left her apartment, job, everything.
I have no idea what happened to her - she's just a sad memory now - she was a true beauty ruined by Scientology.
I’ve heard that for years. No wonder the celebs love it, they are treated like they are kings and queens. I hope and pray for their sakes, God opens their eyes and they see the evil, vile cult for what it is and the truth of who Jesus Christ is.
It is possible to ‘cognite’ and leave. I’ve done it. It’s certainly harder for a high visibility member, but doable even for them.
Haha. Might be the same girl.
Actually — she was a scientologist when I met her. I wasn’t sure what a scientologist was, and didn’t really care (like I said ... top-heavy). Her parents were kinda weird (surfer hippie types), but nice enough. She talked about going to college at Texas A&M ... but, after high school, her and her parents moved to California, she bailed on college, and joined the “Sea Org”.
That was the last I heard from her. I’m sure the mother ship has already taken her back. Shame. She was cute and quite bright — National Merit Scholar. What a loon.
“There are even “Celebrity Centres” set aside to cater to the special needs of celebrities” yikes, I’m trying to imagine the one set aside for Kirstie Alley...
I would think the higher profile converts would in away be easier. I also suppose in away it would be harder because they are coddled, more blinded. Harder to see the reality of the falseness and ugliness of that religion when everyone around them is waiting on them hand and foot. The one thing on their side would be their celebrity. If Scientology came after them they have resources that the little guy doesn't have.
And very good at what they do (whatever that is)
In the late 70s, a friend of mine and I stopped in NYC after our summer in the Maine woods, and one afternoon, looking for a pub for lunch, we got accosted by the Scientologists, wanting to do a personality test. We were in our 20s, likely high as kites (mj), so we thought it would be hoot.
I gave them only my first name. 3 weeks later, to my home address, came something from the scientologists referencing the personality test taken in NYC. Even allowing for the fact that I may have slipped and given them my last name, that would not have led them to me, as my bio dad had passed in the early 60s and mom remarried, so I did not share the last name associated with that address.
Celebrity Centre, Hollywood
I would think the higher profile converts would in away be easier.
Nope. Higher emotional investment, more 'face' to lose, higher blackmail potential.
One of the hardest things on earth is to get off of a scientology ailing list.
There was even a case where a woman reported the death of her spouse, with a request that they stop mailing him as the constant reminders were upsetting her.
She got back a letter that said we got that he’s gone, do you have a forwarding address for him?...
I think you mistook what I was saying. I just asked what’s your testimony you don’t have to be a Christian to have a testimony.
Among the reasons:
Mostly it was internal inconsistencies, The stated goal is to 'clear the planet', yet at that time the already sky-high rates were going up at the rate of 10% per month. If it's ruinously expensive for a well paid American, how is an Indian peasant going to afford it?
It is a fundamental tenant that you never tell the PC (pre-clear) what incidents to run, yet that is precisely what happens on upper levels.
There was also a policy letter called "Jokers and Degraders" that essentially said that anyone with a sense of humor with regards to scientology should be declared a suppressive person and expelled. When that came out I knew it was only a matter of time before that happened to me (as anyone who knows me can attest!). I decided better to leave in my own time and under my own terms.
Scientology a cult? This is newsworthy? Who doesn’t know that?
Good for you!!! You saw the inconsistence and the abuse and were honest enough with yourself. So many blindly continue to follow, it’s truly sad. I couldn’t live under that kind of suppression. It’s like walking on egg shells, one false move and.....How in the world do they ever get converts??? They must lie through their teeth until the hook someone in.
They also know all of the celebrities' dirty little secrets.
Yes I suppose they do. Blackmail is really ugly, but, I suppose that’s how they keep many converts quiet.
null and void still buys the Scientology kool-aide.
It’s just the leadership that’s bad in Scientology according to this thinking.
Sort of like Communism is not a bad system, it’s just the wrong people running it.
Please forgive D-fender.
He thinks that if one recognizes that Blitzkrieg is an effective combat technique, one must be a full blown Nazi.
Yes, if one still touts Scientology “technique” one still, as I put it, still buys the Scientology kool-aide.
Not one to look to for sound advice on the cult.
Me too. But they suck money from all of them.
I have to agree with you on that one null and void.
The difference is you believe the Scientology blitz, in your analogy, is good for people.
Correct me if I’m wrong.
Dunno. In the long run was “Shock and Awe” good for Iraq? Or was Iraq better served under Saddam?
- or -
Cutting people bad.
- or -
How about a straight answer?
I don’t think you are capable of understanding a straight answer.
I gave you a pretty clear one last time we crossed paths.
The answer was “yes.”
Dissembling and trying to avoid that answer speaks volumes.
You can’t truly speak against Scientology if you still believe in their methods. I believe that’s false advertising.
I think you just proved my point.
If you don’t deny it, it’s not your point that’s proven.
One who believes in Scientology is a Scientologist, whether they currently belong to the “Church” or not.
I hope, but doubt it will ever happen, that your hatred (which BTW, I get!) of scientology becomes tempered enough that you can actually see it for what it is: a desperately flawed organization, with thousands of techniques to forward its goals, a few of which are actually useful, and most of which are not useful, and many that are flat out evil and dangerous not only to the practitioner, but to the surrounding environment.
Please stop insisting that I must throw the baby out with the bath water, just to meet your high standards.
I have no interest in, nor motivation to become unreasoningly hateful enough to be on your level.
LOL - great line.
They have an amazing ability to obtain information, if they choose to. That got them into a bit of trouble in the late 70's when the federal government discovered that they had inserted agents into the IRS, FBI and other places to obtain info on government investigations of Scientology and to alter their files.
There's also an interesting series Scientology: The Truth Rundown
My hatred is for evil. L. Ron Hubbard’s technology (”Tech”) is evil - it was borne in evil, it’s purpose is evil, its practice is evil.
Scientology consists primarily of Hubbards Tech. Unless you can thoroughly denounce this, you are furthering evil.
Yes, you CAN throw this baby out with the bathwater.
There is nothing useful that can be gained from Scientology tech that that is not available from non-evil sources elsewhere. Dump the whole Tech lot. The more you tout any “value” in Hubbard’s tech, the more you support Scientology.
Dump it all, denounce it all, walk away from it ALL.
And, please, do not advertise yourself as the get out of Scientology expert on FR while you still believe there is some good in it.
I do have a standing open offer to answer any FReeper's questions about Scientology, either in open forum, or via FReepmail.
True, some of the questions are about getting out of scn, or getting a loved one out, true, I will give the best advice I can to help them, but that is not the end-all and be-all of that thread.
The purpose of that thread is to aid people in knowing about scientology, with the hope that with sufficient knowledge they will avoid it.
If I lie about the few good parts, it would destroy my credibility, as any idiot can see there are some benefits (every trap needs bait!).
It would be the equivalent of trying to convince a mouse that cheese is bad. It violates the mouse's own experience, he knows cheese is good, and anyone saying cheese is bad is probably lying about the trap, too.
It is my experience that one of the things that sticks people to scientology is mystery, the fear that if the leave they will never know what is on the upper levels. I provide information to people who 'gots to know'. </Dirty Harry reference> When it clicks they can (and almost always do) leave.
You see, I have actual success in bailing out scientologists.
How many people have you succeeded in getting anyone out of scientology? With your honest, warm, fuzzy and empathetic approach you must have freed thousands by now.
If it's all the same to you, I'll stick with something that works, even if you can't fathom why or how.
You claim not to advertise yourself and then you advertise yourself.
There’s no way to verify your claims of getting people out. If they are “out” as you are, they’re not really out. E-peens are not impressive.
In Scientology, the cheese IS bad. The method to gain is to use others for your own power. That’s bad cheese, the gain is bad.
It’s a bad method to transform a thief by agreeing that all the stuff he stole is really good stuff. It’s not - it’s a weight that’s killing him spiritually. Wanting the stuff so badly, thinking the stuff would be “good” is false. Reinforcing his Jones is not something to brag about.
Did you see Scientology as part of your spiritual growth? If so, what takes its place now? Did you see Scientology as a way to gain personal power? If so, what replaces that now? Was Scientology a way for you to be of help others? If so, what replaces that now?
How about a little word clearing here.
What's an E-peen?
I really rarely describe anyone’s religion as evil. Or come down hard against someone else’s beliefs. Only the very few that I believe are truly evil and of great harm in all their aspects, from root to petal.
Perhaps a better way to put it:
Scientology preys on and appeals to a harmful side of human nature, it appeals to give power to this side. It’s closest cousin is Satanism. The ties between Hubbard and Aleister Crowley are well documented.
The appeal may be “self improvement,” but it’s for personal power over others. The appeal may be to “help” the planet, but underneath is the real appeal of personal power over others. And on and on. Using others, against their will, for your personal gain. It’s the true appeal of both Satanism and Scientology. Just watch Tom Cruise for a perfect example.
If you reinforce the “good” of accomplishing success according to Hubbard, you feed this evil nature. All the good “cheese” is to a bad end.
If what appealed to someone about Scientology still appeals to them, they’re not free. If you reinforce this desire in others, how tasty the cheese is, even if they leave Scientology, their root cause for joining remains. And they, and others, will suffer so long as it remains.
I’m leaving for the weekend, so won’t be able to post or reply. I’ll check back when I return.
Did you see Scientology as part of your spiritual growth?
Yes. Still do as it is now part of my journey. I hesitate to say that because I know you are going to leap on it, but I mean no more than it is a stepping stone to where I am now, as being an abused child of a drunken parent would be part of an adult's experience, nothing more.
If so, what takes its place now?
If you had bothered to read any of the link I posted way at the beginning of this thread you'd know that I am in that uncomfortable place between belief systems.
I note that you seem to be unwilling to disclose anything about your own belief system, If I may ask, what is your faith?
Did you see Scientology as a way to gain personal power?
No. I saw it as a way to be a better engineer. (Do I look like a frickin' people person???)
If so, what replaces that now?
A long career in engineering, followed by turning 50 and becoming unemployable...
Was Scientology a way for you to be of help others?
If so, what replaces that now?
Somehow I doubt that.
Or come down hard against someone elses beliefs.
Scientology preys on and appeals to a harmful side of human nature,
It appeals to that side of human nature that strives to know more and be better. This has been the natural enemy of the Church since time immemorial.
Its closest cousin is Satanism.
Probably. After all Satan's big crime was wanting to be as good as God.
The ties between Hubbard and Aleister Crowley are well documented.
Yup. The OT (Operating Thetan) levels, unlike everything else in scn dont start with a zero level, I guess the old guy thought OT0 looked too much like OTO (Ordo Templi Orientis, Crowley's group)
The appeal may be self improvement, but its for personal power over others.
Not for all in the church, I knew many members who were sincere in their quest for personal best.
The appeal may be to help the planet, but underneath is the real appeal of personal power over others.
In way too many cases, yes.
If you reinforce the good of accomplishing success according to Hubbard, you feed this evil nature. All the good cheese is to a bad end.
If I deny the workable parts, I weaken both my own personal integrity and my warning message.
If what appealed to someone about Scientology still appeals to them, theyre not free. If you reinforce this desire in others, how tasty the cheese is,
That model works for alcoholism, but most people who partied through college can still enjoy an occasional beer with ther buds without wanting to go back to their party days.
even if they leave Scientology, their root cause for joining remains.
I still desire to make the world a better place, this is bad because?