When we were driving to our hotel in Hollywood, one of the first things we saw was a giant white
building that looked like something from Harry Potter. When we got around to the front of it there was a giant sign on top that said Church of Scientology. I think most people know that Tom Cruise is a follower of Scientology, and quite a few people might have even heard of actress Leah Remini’s documentary series, Scientology and the Aftermath, but I for one didn’t realize how big of a presence Scientology actually has around Hollywood.
We saw three buildings belonging to the Church of Scientology within about a 3 mile radius of
Hollywood. One of the women we met with in Hollywood told us that they’re there welcoming new actors, offering free acting classes and sometimes even a free place to stay. The director of Hollywood Prayer Network told us that when they posted an article about Leah Remini and Scientology, they started receiving emails and phone calls from leaders of the religion the same day wanting to know who they were and what they were doing. I realized I needed to learn more about the Church of Scientology, so I figured I’d share some of what I read in the book Larson’s New Book of Cults by Bob Larson.
10 Facts About Scientology
- Lafayette Ronald Hubbard, the founder of the Church of Scientology, was originally a science fiction writer.
- The recruitment program of Scientology starts with them offering a “free personality analysis” to people who are walking around the city.
- If you decide to join the religion, you attend their counseling sessions (costing around $300 a piece) to help you “reach your mind’s full potential.” These counseling sessions are also recorded and can be used as blackmail if you decide to leave the religion.
- The idea behind Scientology is that humans are descended from gods called thetans, and that through the Church of Scientology’s counseling sessions and programs, you can remove all of your mental blocks that came from traumatic experiences in your past lives and awaken your dormant thetan potential. Then you are a “cleared” individual and have power over matter and spirit.
- Scientology boasts many claims of physical well-being and positive mental development once you are “cleared.”
- The Church of Scientology has claimed they have over 10 million followers, but most people believe there are really only around 30,000 followers of Scientology in the world. They do have churches all over the world, however, including Dallas, California, Oralando, Bogota, Amsterdam, Tokyo and England.
- One draw of Scientology is its simple, structured view of life.
- One of Hubbard’s survivors was his eldest son, who changed his last name to remove associations with his father’s religion. He was a Christian.
- The symbol for Scientology is a cross, but they claim that the bar denotes matter and the vertical line symbolizes spirit.
- Scientologists claim that Jesus was simply a “cleared” individual.
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