He has done and does talk a lot about himself, Scientology, the religious organization that over time has linked itself to the names of the likes of Tom Cruise and John Travolta. There are many, however, still little known aspects of this cult, halfway between spirituality and science fiction and defined by many as “a sect” due to some practices spread within it.
Scientology, what it is and what it believes in
L. Ron Hubbord founded the religious organization that bears the name of “Scientology” in 1954 based on the beliefs set out in a famous book of his from 1950, Dianetics, in which he illustrated a kind of method to get rid of psychosomatic diseases, much criticized by the scientific community. It is only the first of Hubbord’s many writings on which the Church still stands today, defined by many as a “sect” because of its unusual beliefs and practices. The main doctrine of Scientology concerns the liberation of the soul, the thetan, from the “engrams”, the negative and traumatic mental images recorded by each in moments of unconsciousness and in the previous lives of the soul, which is reincarnated. On this is based the path of the followers, who to be part of the organization are called to sign a contract in which they put themselves at its service for a billion years and then participate in a series of courses at an increasingly advanced level and cost. higher and higher in order to reach the state of Clear and the following OT levels.
But let’s go step by step. A person who first approaches Scientology usually undergoes a personality test free, also offered online, after which an initial consultation is provided. From that moment begins the path to become “clean”, that is “to be freed from one’s reactive mind, which is the hidden source of irrational behavior, unreasonable fears, disturbances and insecurities”. This is done through auditing: the faithful is placed in front of an “auditor” and a machine called an “E-meter” – an electric charge meter connected to two electrodes – and is encouraged to talk, through a series of questions and answers, about experiences that could hinder one’s life path. In addition to these practices, members must also read Hubbord’s books, which they buy by funding the organization itself. Once the status of Clearthe next steps begin: the OT levels (from “operating thetan”that is “one who is able to take care of things without the need to use physical means”).
The spiritual levels are eight, like the points of the cross that distinguishes the Church of Scientology, but the content is not known to the members, who discover the new levels only by reaching them, because Hubbord claimed that anyone who became aware of them without adequate preparation he would have risked dying. The set of beliefs revealed in these stages of belief, however, are part of a series of catastrophic tales, including the one about Xenu or Xemu, an extraterrestrial at the head of the “Galactic Confederation” which about 75 million years ago would have transported billions of alien souls to present Earth and then annihilate them. According to Scientology, particles of these aliens are still present among us, causing spiritual damage to our bodies.
The criticisms of the “exiles” from the organization
Many aspects of Scientology have over time been disclosed by “escapes” by the organization, that is, those who, after having abandoned it, have reported the disputes. The organization is not only criticized for the costly courses offered to its members, but also because it is considered dangerous and has been repeatedly accused of child abuse, blackmail and extortion, threats, tax evasion and fraud. Famous is the case of Lisa McPherson’s death 1995: At the age of 36, the woman died after spending seventeen days in segregation in a Scientology-owned hotel room, where she had been locked up to treat her mental health problems. In short, the oddities are not lacking, but many have given visibility to the organization with their fame and, among the stars who are part of it, there is also Tom Cruise who, according to some sources, would have broken the marriage with Nicole Kidman precisely because of Scientology.