Monday, 16 March 2015

Scientology in America


Scientology is and will always be fundamentally American for three main reasons.
The first;  it is incredibly vague in everything it says it is in an attempt to appeal to the mass market. for example the churches website boasts sponsoring multiple causes, for example 'human rights' and 'a crime free world' and others, all of which are notably unspecific, granted this is a website for all Scientologists and so local issues aren't likely to be covered however this is simply the tip of the ice burg. All information put on the website is very vague, in the websites video entitled 'what is Scientology?' the most specific thing said is 'its the study of knowing' which I personally feel can't and doesn't describe a religion very well at all. the website also boasts 'practical solutions to real problems' however it only talks about interpersonal relationship problems. 
the reasoning behind this is that the whole website is designed to encourage people from all walks of life to either become a Scientologist too or even just take up some further reading. It is purposefully vague so it sounds relevant to as many people as possible, much like horoscopes or the American dream.

the second; it is absolutely focused on the financial advancement of oneself even if that means shamelessly taking from another. Being a church the movement doesn't have to pay taxes on the hundreds of books and films that it requires its members buy, however that doesn't stop the church asking new members to buy 9 books the cheapest of which is £20, which although may sound reasonable for a book you have to remember its not taxed as highly as other books might be if at all. I consider this an American characteristic since it is  the basis of capitalism which arguably is only the default around the world because of American hegemony. 

The third is exemplified in this quote:
“No culture in the history of the world, save the thoroughly depraved and expiring ones, has failed to affirm the existence of a Supreme Being. It is an empirical observation that men without a strong and lasting faith in a Supreme Being are less capable, less ethical and less valuable to themselves and society....A man without an abiding faith is, by observation alone, more of a thing than a man.”  - LRH (the science of survival)
Needless to say following Tuesdays lesson the unwavering stress put on the importance of religion and belief in a higher power is most definitely an American characteristic which the Scientology religion exhibits proudly on its website.

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