Scientology - what rock have I been under?

I always find it odd pretty much the only famous people mentioned when this topic comes up are Cruise, Travolta and Alley.

Both Giovanni Ribisi and Beck were raised in Scientology and remain active members today yet don’t get mentioned often in these discussions. They are arguably at least as well known as Kirstie Alley if not Tom and John. They seem to be more circumspect about their beliefs so maybe that has something to do with it.

This is a more thorough list of famous folks under the spell of El-ron.

The targeting of celebrities isn’t an innovation of Miscavage’s – Hubbard himself started it in the 1950s, sending out copies of his book and solicitations to high-profile individuals in order to try to get some “Name” Scientologists. The Celebrity Center in LA was in operation long before MisCavige was around. Hubbard knew the value of highly-placed advocates. Most people didn’t “bite”, but he was able to eventually net some big-name actors, musicians, and Hollywood folk. Ernest Lehman, who wrote North by Northwest, for instance, was one.

Three relevant Cracked articles:

Which makes the case that yes, Ron Hubbard was a complete cynical crazy bastard;

Secondly, an article that compares Scientologie to other religions in the emerging state and finds Sc about as crazy as any other religion;

But also, this:

To piggyback off of that article, I’ve got an anecdote that’s a little dry and boring.

I was in a relationship for 5 years with a guy who was a semi-practicing Jew. A couple months after we had started dating, his oldest daughter was having her bat mitzvah and I helped plan the whole thing with them. I made a video, picked out decorations and foods, and went to the temple to help set up for the afterparty. One of my ex’s friends from college showed up from California to help and he was a practicing Scientologist.

Me, being a socially blunt person, I asked him a bunch of questions about his religion. His story was that his parents were both Scientologists and he was raised one too. When he was 15, he was orphaned in a car wreck and was put into a boarding school that was paid for by Scientology. When he graduated from there, he went to college which also was paid for by Scientology.

I’m still an atheist and I still think the religion is bullshit. Right up there with Judaism as well (just because it has tenure doesn’t give it any more credence). But at the same time, it gave me pause that not all members are cultish drones trying to get everyone to get rid of thetans.

I have read about $cientology for quite some time. The fact is, this “religion” makes easily disprovable claims. In fact, Hubbard himself demonstrated his first “clear” person in 1954 (in Los Angeles). This woman was unable to answer simple questions, and forgot the names of people she had known.
So, to those who might view it sympathetically, Scientology is false, and its claims are totally bogus. Tom Cruise might believe in it, but what does that prove? Maybe Cruise thinks he has been “cleared” of “thetans”…maybe not…or maybe (as has been sggested), he has a ton of skeletons in his closet…that he doesn’t want to come out.

So do plenty of religions.

Oh, man, that says it all. I’m saving that for later usage.

Yes, I think the key here is that the more circumspect folks you mention here were raised as Scientologists. It’s probably as mundane to them as any other religion is to a person raised around it. The converts are the ones who probably get a wee bit overexcited about their newfound “clarity.”