Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

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Within Scientology, if a Scientologist sees another Scientologist doing something that the organization would consider wrong, they have to write up what’s called a Knowledge Report. It is one way in which the Church of Scientology — a destructive cult known for, among other crimes, its manifold human rights abuses — keep control over its members. Everyone is closely watched by everyone else. Strangers, friends, and even family members will write up Knowledge Reports about each other.

Within Scientology, if a Scientologist sees another Scientologist doing something that the organization would consider wrong, they have to write up what’s called a Knowledge Report. It is one way in which the Church of Scientology — a destructive cult known for, among other crimes, its manifold human rights abuses — keep control over its members. Everyone is closely watched by everyone else. Strangers, friends, and even family members will write up Knowledge Reports about each other.

Knowledge Report nears completion.

Emmy-winning journalist Mark Bunker has been in radio, television and dramatic productions for years. Beginning in 1997, he began using his skills to bring attention to the abuses and lawless behind the scenes behavior of the cult of Scientology. His web site, XENU TV is an excellent source of information on Scientology. Mark says of his work…

I was introduced to Scientology back in the 1980’s by “60 Minutes.” They did two terrific reports, in 1980 and 1985, which showed the impact this organization had on the small town of Clearwater, Florida. It was a very chilling story which showed a sleepy beach community, made up primarily of retirees, being invaded and occupied by a paramilitary organization disguised as a church.

Those are harsh words but when you look at the actions Scientology took upon entering Clearwater, they are accurate. Scientology files uncovered in FBI raids in Los Angeles and Washington provided a detailed look at the covert operations Scientology ran to target their enemies and destroy them, including attacks on the mayor of the city, Gabe Cazares.

This was a fascinating story. How could a religion setup a mayor with a phony hit-and run accident? How could a religion setup journalist Paulette Cooper in a phony UN bomb threat which cost her her job, her friends and almost her freedom? Luckily the FBI raids happened before she was to stand trial and the whole sordid Scientology plan called “Operation Freakout” was uncovered and exposed.

What kind of religion behaved this way? The answer was a phony religion created by a science fiction writer to enrich his own coffers. “MAKE MONEY. MAKE MORE MONEY. MAKE OTHER PEOPLE PRODUCE SO AS TO MAKE MORE MONEY,” were the exact words in Hubbard Communications Office Policy Letter, 9 March 1972, MS OEC 384

But his interest in Scientology didn’t stop with merely finding out about the one of the strange cults that appeared on the news magazine shows of the 70’s and 80’s. His life would change dramatically in 1998.

in 1998 when I moved into a home in the Loz Feliz hills in Los Angeles which had been rented before me by a Scientologist. She apparently split without giving Scientology a forwarding address because I kept getting Scientology magazines delivered to my door.

In reading the magazines, I was struck by just how much gibberish was involved in even an ad for a strange device called an e-meter. Engrams? Enturbulate? Wog World? Thetan? What the hell are these people talking about? And why are they wearing navy uniforms?

By then I had been living in L.A. for over a decade and had passed the Scientology properties without giving them much thought. However, where once my interest in the subject was piqued by a TV broadcast and would fade when the reports died down, now there was a miraculous thing called the internet.

I started doing research and was stunned by what I uncovered. Court documents, confessions from former members and info on the super secret upper levels of Scientology which were said by Hubbard to kill you through pneumonia if you weren’t properly prepared before being exposed to them.

I took the chance and you know what? I survived. I learned all about the evil intergalactic overlord named Xenu. He stuffed us into volcanoes 75 million years ago and blew us all up with hydrogen bombs far more powerful then those we have today.

Which brings us to “Knowledge Report, the movie.” This will be Mark’s first feature film. Production is nearly finished and the film should be a terrific exposé on the inner workings of the Church of Scientology. Stay tuned to his YouTube channel for updates or follow him on Twitter and don’t miss a screening in a theater near you when it is released.

One of the better books by a former Scientologist is “Counterfeit Dreams” by Jefferson Hawkins. Hawkins was responsible for the 1980’s TV volcano ads which put Dianetics back on the bestseller lists.

Hawkins’ book can be read in its entirety on his website, COUNTERFEIT DREAMS: my journey into and out of Scientology.

COUNTERFEIT DREAMS

In Counterfeit Dreams, Hawkins traces his Scientology experience from his first eager fascination with the subject in the late 1960’s to his departure, 35 years later, discarded, vilified and shunned as a “Suppressive Person.”

In Counterfeit Dreams, Hawkins traces his Scientology experience from his first eager fascination with the subject in the late 1960’s to his departure, 35 years later, discarded, vilified and shunned as a “Suppressive Person.”

From the Preface to the hardback edition of Counterfeit Dreams, available August 2010

This was not an easy book to write. For three years following my departure from the Church of Scientology, I was not able to write anything sensible about my experience. Then gradually, the onion layers of indoctrination started to peel off, one by one, and I began to get some distance and perspective.

I began writing my account as a blog, posting it chapter by chapter. I did this to put pressure on myself to continue writing, to finish the narrative. And partly to reach out to others who may have had similar experiences.

I knew that I could never tell part of the story; it had to be the whole story or nothing. When I would try to tell people about the abuses I experienced within the Church of Scientology, they would ask me one thing: why had I stayed so long? And understanding that meant telling the whole thing.

My blog account attracted an audience, and they kept the pressure on me to finish. Some of these were people, like me, who had left Scientology and they found in me a kindred spirit. Others, to my surprise, were people still actively involved in the Church of Scientology. They were shocked by my revelations as to what goes on at the top levels of Scientology, and, after reading my story, they began to re-examine their own involvement with Scientology. Hundreds of people have now left the Church of Scientology as a direct result of reading my story. And every week I get an e-mail or two from people who have newly left.

Once my blog account was completed, my readers and friends encouraged me to expand Counterfeit Dreams to book-length and publish it.

As I often have to explain to people, I am not anti-Scientology. While I am no longer a Scientologist, I have many friends who are and who practice the subject outside the Church. I wish them well. My objection is to the abuses of organized Scientology and it is these that I continue to expose and fight against.

I have also heard from many people who were never involved with the Church of Scientology. For some who have been trapped in an abusive group or relationship, my story resonates. If this book can serve as either a cautionary tale or a message of hope, it will have been worth writing.

Steven Alan Hassan is a licensed mental health counselor who has written extensively on the subject of cults. In 1978 Hassan was one of the first people to develop and perform exit counseling, and is the author of three books on the subject of destructive cults, and what he describes as their use of mind control, thought reform, and the psychology of influence in order to recruit and retain members. Here’s what he has to say about Hawkins’ book.

Hawkins has written a compelling and emotional story that demonstrates how intelligent people can be drawn into and controlled by abusive, authoritarian groups. His new book, Counterfeit Dreams, is a must-read not only for those who have been directly involved with Scientology but also for their family and friends who want to understand it from a 36-year insider at the highest levels. Furthermore, I believe former members of other abusive, totalitarian groups would benefit from reading this valuable book.”
Steven Hassan, author of Releasing the Bonds

Bare Faced Messiah

Independent US publisher Silvertail Books is putting out Bare-Faced Messiah in America. It’s website describes the book as telling the story of “a penniless science fiction writer who…became a millionaire prophet and convinced his adoring followers that he alone could save the world”.

Russell Miller’s book, Bare-Faced Messiah: The True Story of L. Ron Hubbard, after 27 years is now being published in the U.S. the New York Post reports:

For example, the legend promoted by Scientology said that L. Ron Hubbard had grown up breaking wild horses as a child on his grandfather’s Montana ranch, which took up fully a fourth of the entire state. Miller showed instead that Ron’s grandfather was “a small-time veterinarian who supplemented his income renting out horses and buggies from a livery barn.” The family actually led an itinerant existence, moving repeatedly after Ron’s Nebraska birth in 1911 until they ended up in the Pacific Northwest.

The legend said Hubbard had made extensive travels to Asia, where the budding teenaged philosopher communed with holy men and mystics who had great respect for the young American’s precocity.
Miller found instead that Hubbard had made two trips to Asia while his father was stationed in Guam and made observations that were pretty typical for a teenager. In Beijing in 1928, Hubbard noted that the Chinese could make millions if they turned the Great Wall into a roller coaster. But ultimately, he was unimpressed with the country, writing in his journal, “The trouble with China is, there are too many chinks here.”

Read the whole story here.

Pick up a Kindle edition here.

In a letter to the St. Petersburg Times…

Money could go to better use

In this time of recession, when people are losing jobs, houses are going to foreclosure and times basically are tough all over for everyone, it’s nice to see the cult of greed spending $40 million on renovations to its lair — not for the good of the community or to help those less fortunate, but to add to its own excess.

As a “religion” and a “church,” you would think that Scientology would put that money to better use. And I like the fact that they told people that the restaurants and ballroom in the renovated Fort Harrison Hotel would be open to the public, but once the renovations were complete they had a change of heart.

Strikes me as ironic when a “reader” has to point out the obvious.

First person: I escaped Scientology after 22 years

The beliefs of the Church of Scientology might sound like something from a science fiction book but The Complex reveals that the Church s growing power base is a shocking reality.

The beliefs of the Church of Scientology might sound like something from a science fiction book but The Complex reveals that the Church s growing power base is a shocking reality.

Mine was an uneasy childhood. My father was schizophrenic and had bouts of manic depression. He and my mother both died when I was 10 years old, and my siblings and I moved from Scotland to Ireland, to live with my mother’s relatives.

As a teenager, I started to find the idea of an all-encompassing God and protector alluring, and in 1984, moved to a small village in Germany. Here, I discovered Scientology. I was in a bad way one afternoon, walking the streets of Stuttgart, when a young lady approached me: “Do you have a good memory?” she asked. I agreed to join her at the local Scientology centre, to find out.

The centre was filled with friendly, efficient people. It all seemed very official and scientific. I took tests which revealed I needed counselling, or “auditing”. I found the “science” aspect very seductive, and quickly became involved in the group.

After two weeks, I was taken with the teachings of [Scientology’s founder] L Ron Hubbard. He was my guru, and I started to see less of my girlfriend and friends.

There’s a disturbing pattern in the stories of escapees … wonder what that might mean? Perhaps they are all part of a massive global conspiracy to bring down a legitimate religion? Or maybe there really is something to the claim that Scientology is a destructive cult. It’s certainly worth a 2nd look before jumping on board. For a deeper study of John’s experience, check out his book, The Complex: An Insider Exposes the Covert World of the Church of Scientology.

Despite Celebrity Shills, Scientology Cult Fails to Win Friends and Influence People

by Brandon Walsh

On August 9, Scientology held a black-tie Gala to glorify 39 years of the Celebrity Centre in an attempt to improve their sagging image worldwide. While only about half of the anticipated 1,500 guests attended, Anonymous was lining the streets in colorful evening wear and their signature masks to inform the arriving guests about Scientology’s human rights abuses, suppression of free speech and criminal malfeasance. (more…)