Scientology: Should I check it out?

The Church has just opened it’s newest Center in my fair city (St. Petersburg) complete with a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by Vinny Barbarino himself. Why, no sooner did I see the article 'neath a picture of his grinning mug inviting all passers by to “stop in and take the very same questionairre that changed his life twenty-five years ago” then said questionnaire showed up in my mailbox. All I have to do is answer their one hundred questions and someone will call me to schedule a face to face “evaluation”. No purchase neccessary, blah blah blah.

Make no mistake, I have no intention of joining. Aside from the fact that I don’t believe in organized religion and suffer from terminal disobedience, I don’t have a dime to spare (I’m pretty sure that last part is a deal breaker for them). I guess I just have some bizarre need to know what it’s all about. Sure, I’ve read all the same stuff you all have, and even in the face of all the horror stories and the more rabid Church detractors here on the board I still have no opinion of them one way or another. Why I’m considering doing this, I don’t know, nor is it that important. I guess what I want to know is if I’ll be opening a virulent can of worms. Has anyone here ever taken the test and if so, were you able to say “no thank you” and go on your merry way?Once I tell them that I am only slightly above the poverty level (well that’s an exaggeration, but not by much)will they drop me like a hot potato or try to con me into some financial plan? Is this a completely bad idea? I’m not trying to prove anything or mock them; I’m simply curious. If nothing else, maybe their indepth personality test can reveal my true, dark nature(although I think the question “do you suffer from or have you been diagnosed with depression?” to which I answered “yes” pretty much covers that).

So, what do you all think?I’ve always been interested to learn about different cultures and religions, but I don’t want to open myself up to harassment. Should I go for it or remain blissfully ignorant on this one?

You could, and then we could have an **Ask the Scientologist ** thread.

I’ve got a million. :smiley:

You could take the test, but answer all the questions like you don’t have a care in the world, are lousy with friends and bursting with confidence (and maybe you are, I don’t know you :)). If they still say you need help, you would know something is up.

My oldest son filled out one of their questionnaires once, back in the mid-80’s, in Seattle. When I moved from Seattle to Iowa in 1990, he stayed in Seattle (grown up, had his own place, etc.).

Imagine my suprise when I started getting Scientology mail addressed to my son but at my new Iowa address. It wasn’t forwarded by the post office – the church had my new address. Creeped me right out. It was a few years before their crap stopped coming.

I am skeptic of all religions, but at least the ones that have been with us for thousands of years have some deeper connection to life, morals and spirituality.

The testing, or auditing of which you speak uses a fucking ohmmeter to measure your skin resistance! That’s a really valid method for determining character all right.

Okaaaay…this is exactly the kind of stuff I was wondering about. I mean, I’ve read stories about harassment that involved ex-members or people who tried to cause trouble for them, but I wasn’t sure if that is their standard procedure with the average bear. Thanks, ** Auntie ** and to you other two wiseguys as well :slight_smile:

Especially when the head of the religion was a guy named Ron. :slight_smile:

Yeah, as opposed to those really unusually unique names like Jesus and Mohammad. :wink:

My late brother was curious about Scientology. He was a hidebound skeptic, and had no expectation of joining, but he wanted to know more about the beliefs and practices of Scientologists. He submitted to some “testing” and “evaluation,” and the next thing he knew, he was under siege by aggressive, insistent Scientology-peddling people who would not leave him alone. They were friendly enough, except that they wouldn’t stop calling him, showing up on his doorstep, and mailing him. It took him a couple of years to shake these guys.

And it’s stuff like that that’s kept me out of the “Psychology: Museum of DEATH!!!” that Scientology runs in Hollywood, despite the fact that they keep leaving me “Admit One” free tickets on my porch. Well, that, and the fact that I can’t find anyone willing to go with me.

I forgot to make it clear that Mike didn’t join up (his momma didn’t raise no fools).

All he did was fill out the questionnaire, cuz he’s a bit anal, and he actually likes to fill out forms. :slight_smile:

I’ll take you. We’ll use the names Rooster Cogburn and Mattie Ross. It’ll be fun. If they get bothersome, I’ll growl and we can watch them run…:smiley:

It just occured to me that I discarded the envelope it came in without taking notice if it was addressed to me personally or was just a mass mailing :eek: Now I’m askared!
It’s kind of funny, I worked downtown where the facility is for years and a co-worker and I took daily walks all over. She still works there and I offered her five dollars if she would go in and take the test. Her answer was an immediate, unequivocable “hells no”.

It’s not a religion. It’s a pseudo-science cum sci fi fantasy cum money-sucking hole.
If you want to take questionnaires, there’s about a zillion of them at

If you go there, take a bus so that they can’t trace your plates, give a false name and address, don’t give out any information, and don’t write any checks. If you take the test, keep a sharp eye out for questions that can reveal personal information, and keep backpacks and/or briefcases in sight at all times.

… in case they put a tracking device in them?

A friend of mine had a similar experience. I’d avoid them. It’s not worth it, and you’ll get a better idea of what they’re about by searching the net and watching that South Park episode.
ETA: If you do go, follow Czarcasm’s advice.

I’m inclined to agree. Yet * something * about it sucks people in and holds them for life. Which in and of itself is kind of a moot point for me, since I don’t want to be sucked in for life or otherwise. Doesn’t it intrigue you (or anyone else here) on a cerebral “what the heck is the attraction” kind of level? The fact that it has so many followers (granted, some saner than others) in spite of its whacky origins just makes me utter a resounding and sincere “WTF?”

Sort of like asking if you should try heroin, just once, to see how it feels.

I had a friend who got sucked into this cult and she didn’t have a nickel to her name, but they still latched onto her big time. Took years to get away from them, they hounded her with phone calls and surprise visits at her door at all hours of day and night. They played all kinds of mind games with her - it was really a horror story.

While I can understand the curiosity factor, and maybe the joy of screwing with their minds - remember, they have had far more experience screwing with other people’s minds, so beware.