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Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
From: stark@dwovax.enet.dec.com (Todd I. Stark)
Subject: Re: Scientology: a comedy in 3 acts
Message-ID: <1991Nov8.182907.29105@PA.dec.com>
Sender: news@PA.dec.com (News)
Organization: Digital Equipment Corporation
Date:  8 NOV 91 12:48:39    
Lines: 69

>In article <5818@email.sp.unisys.com> paulr@email.sp.unisys.com (Paul Raulerson) writes: >> >>Now I have one question to ask: Why is it in this news group, that >>the *pro* scientologist folks are being polite and trying to provide >>evidence of their cause, and the anti-scientologist folks are being >>nothing if not hostile? >> >>From an outside viewpoint, that speaks loads. And not in favor of >>the anti-scrientologist crowd either. >> >>-Paul

I'm not a member of the Church, though I've read a lot of their materials and have spoken at some length to a several of their representatives in my area. I've studied them because of my fascination with the subject matter of the original Dianetics (in addition to a number of other philosophies that nobly propose to help mankind improve itself).

From my experience, it's pretty standard to see the 'debunking' of these type of spiritual/psychological groups take a hostile turn. That in itself neither supports nor weakens the rational content of any of the arguments, it simply belies the force of people's convictions. What's most interesting to me is that more hard-core Scientologists have not replied in an similar manner, as I would expect.

That does indeed seem to say something about their self-control and ability to think clearly in the face of strident opposition. It could of course be argued that Scientology 'processes' out anger and hostility, for whatever the implications of that might be. It does seem to indicate that they may be doing *something* right (or at least of consistent effectiveness) in their process of conditioning/helping their members. I rarely see members of other religious groups remain as calm under duress.

It's very disappointing to me that the apparently extremely promising collection of ideas in Dianetics wasn't merged into the therapeutic mainstream, instead of polarizing itself as an isolated movement apart from other studies with similar goals. It's really too bad we distrust each other's motives so much that we draw these battle lines and can't make better use of each others ideas. It should be pretty obvious that not everyone involved in the Church is a charlatan or a criminal, even if its core might be based on some deceptions, which I believe may be the case.

Now we have thousands of well-meaning, intelligent people seduced into a self-limiting, basically isolationist mindset for the use of Dianetic ideas. These same people could, in my opinion, have been aided in their quality of life by the Dianetic methods, without having been led into the dogma of Scientology.

Nothing wrong with the basic methods of Dianetics in my opinion. The creation of a new set of terminology is fairly standard in such fields, too. But the formallized refusal to allow ideas to evolve and merge with those in other fields is what makes the CoS philosophy something less desireable than what could have been. That's the clue that should tell members that they are involved in something a little more controlling of their mental patterns than just 'a science of mental health,' although that is almost certainly a valid part of the original intent.

I'd be very interested in responding to private mail at stark@dwovax.enet.dec.com if anyone has any comments on my posting. I probably won't be following this newsgroup too often, for time reasons.

kind regards, todd

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