Flicking through the TV planner we saw the Louis Theroux My Scientology Movie advertised. So we set a record on it and finally got round to watching it a couple of days ago.
We have watched a lot of the Louis Theroux documentaries and we like his approach. He is very thorough and he has immersed himself in some pretty weird situations.
Most of us have heard about Scientology. We have never looked into exactly what Scientology is, we know like most people that Tom Cruise is heavily immersed into the religion. However that is it and so this was a good opportunity to find out what it is all about!
Louis Theroux My Scientology Movie
The 99 minute film/documentary started with screenshots of the original tweets by Louis that started the journey into looking into Scientology. The tweets were asking if anyone could get him an interview, get a foot inside to tell people more about Scientology.
This was met with tweets warning Louis Theroux to be careful, basically to watch his back as this was a risky undertaking. He was refused an official inside view and so began this very unique way of telling the story.
Louis teamed up with a guy called Mark C. “Marty” Rathbun who was the former senior executive of the Church of Scientology. He assisted the head of the church David Miscavige , who took over upon the death of American author L. Ron Hubbard. Hubbard wrote science fiction and developed a system called Dianetics which is the seed from which this religion was born.
Because the Church of Scientology refused an interview and did its utmost best to scupper the film and to apply pressure to those who were involved. The film could only really tell one side of the story. That was information from Mark Rathbun and a few other ex members of the church.
So what is Scientology?
This is what it says on the official website of Scientology
Developed by L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology is a religion that offers a precise path leading to a complete and certain understanding of one’s true spiritual nature and one’s relationship to self, family, groups, Mankind, all life forms, the material universe, the spiritual universe and the Supreme Being.
Scientology addresses the spirit—not the body or mind—and believes that Man is far more than a product of his environment, or his genes.
Scientology comprises a body of knowledge which extends from certain fundamental truths. Prime among these are:
Man is an immortal spiritual being.
His experience extends well beyond a single lifetime.
His capabilities are unlimited, even if not presently realised.
Scientology further holds Man to be basically good, and that his spiritual salvation depends upon himself, his fellows and his attainment of brotherhood with the universe.
Scientology is not a dogmatic religion in which one is asked to accept anything on faith alone. On the contrary, one discovers for oneself that the principles of Scientology are true by applying its principles and observing or experiencing the results.
The ultimate goal of Scientology is true spiritual enlightenment and freedom for all.
Of course I can’t go into this too deeply, this is a blog and not an encyclopedia! However it is not for me to cast judgement either way, I am no expert on the pro’s and con’s of this religion that many people accuse of being a cult.
What I did learn through what Mark Rathbun explained through demonstration with actors, is that I can see why Tom Cruise has the presence that he is so well-known for. You can see the intensity in him when he is on chat shows, a calmness and demeanour that just explodes with confidence.
So why are people against Scientology?
There have been claims of abuse within the Church, much of this is said to have been by leader David Miscavige.
People have said that some members are held against their own will, but this is a grey area, as the church says that they say this just because they have a grievance against Scientology after leaving.
It isn’t a religion where you progress through faith, belief or learning. The journey for someone joining the church requires a large financial outlay for each stage. Bringing other people to the church brings you a commission on everything they spend on books and other materials.
Attack the Attacker
If someone attacks the church or its members, they are taught and practice ‘Attack the Attacker’ which is (1) Spot who is attacking us. (2) Start investigating them promptly for felonies or worse using own professionals, not outside agencies. (3) Double curve our reply by saying we welcome an investigation of them. (4) Start feeding lurid, blood, sex, crime actual evidence on the attackers to the press.
Without a doubt the My Scientology Movie was very interesting. Of course like I said before, it only shows one side of the story and Mark Rathbun is very anti Scientology. This of course is not surprising when we see footage of church members doing what is called ‘Squirrel Busting’. This is where they basically get in his face with a barrage of childish taunts and he has apparently been subjected to this over a number of years.
It is a very unique religion, their beliefs are not inline with mainstream religion. It is surrounded with controversy and this could maybe be lessened if they were a little more open. The best way of stopping people making what you say are false claims is to be open and honest.
One thing is for sure and that is that the Church of Scientology is continuing to grow and spread across the globe.