So if we HAVE to have a sci-fi writer create a religion...

why did it have to be L. Ron? He’s a schlocky writer and most of stuff he made up and managed to convince people to believe in is pretty corny. So let’s hear your votes for which Sci-fi writer should have been the one to create a religion that half of Hollywood believes in.

I’ll go first. I’m torn between Frank Herbert’s Dune stuff and the religion Octavia Butler made up in her “Parable” series. Either of which make more sense than Elronism, are more interesting, and I could even make a case for at least the Parable religion being a more noble and belief-worthy dogma.

Mods: I wasn’t sure whether to put this in Cafe Society or IMHO. Feel free to move if you think it’s necessary.

If you look back at the milieu that L. Ron came from, you’ll find that a lot of science fiction writers had stories in which a subversive group represented itself as a religion in order to function in a hostile environment. John Campbell, Astounding’s editor and friend of Hubbard, wrote “All”, although it didn’t get published until long after he died (In the anthology “The Space Beyond” circa 1975). Campbell described the plot to Robert Heinlein, who used it in the story “Sixth Column” (released in paperback as “The Day After Tomorrow”). Heinlein reportedly didn’t much like the story or the idea, but he needed the sale.

Then, of course, there was Isaac Asimov, who had his Foundation people survive and spread their ideas in a collaspsing galactic empire by clothing it as a religion.

I’m sure there are other examples. I’m surprised that, AFAIK, no biographer of Hubbard or commentator on Scientology or Dianetics has never pointed out this seeming influence in the background of the founder of his own religion.

So we sorta do have examples of science fiction writer-founded religions, except they’re all fictional and weren’t intended to be terribly serious.

Sorry, Cal, I didn’t explain myself well enough. I know that lots of Sci-fi writers created fictional religions. So far, L. Ron’s is the only one that crossed the line and now people think it’s a real religion.

My question was: If you could pick any fictional sci-fi religion to become a real religion (instead of L. Ron’s), which would it be?

I dunno about fictional religions, sorry, but can I just name an author?

Ursula K. LeGuin…her “Left Hand of Darkness” was…well, something else.

:smack: D’oh. I mean, I think she’d make a good religion. What I don’t know, but interesting at the very least.

I pick the one with the horny babes in space boots. Just space boots.

Piers Anthony. A religion dedicated to panties and puns? Sign me up!

What do you mean the services drag on for five days?

Yes, but um…all his girls were really, really young.

But then again, I guess the puns would attract you.

Seriously, though…they were…young.

I briefly looked things over, when making a review of organized religions, and it turns out that organized Satanists seem to lean more towards a Jewish model of Satan (the loyal opposition) then a christian model (wants to actively cause harm to the world). Thus, I applaud CandidGamera’s effort to organize a religion we call all unite around hating! :stuck_out_tongue:

What about the Fosterites, who had bit parts in various Heinlein stories? You can smoke, drink, gamble, and (I suspect) screw around all you want, just make sure the products you use have the Church stamp of approval. Let’s put the sin back in sin tax. :smiley:

Adherents to this faith would get to have sex with young teenage girls, who are always ready and willing…

Also, the services always end with an hour-long reading from the Book-Of-Self-Praises, written by the religion’s founder.

I suppose they are youthful, and I’ll refrain from making the usual Catholic joke here.

Perhaps Douglas Adam’s religion regarding the Great Green Arkleseizure?

Just too be clear, the teenage part was not the reason to hate this suggestion, but the puns. Puns, I tell you! Gamera, do you care to apologize for your efforts to spread pun oer’ the land?

I’m actually surprised that Asimov’s or Heinlein’s ideas didn’t take off as religions, at least they’re a bit less wacky than the space alien theory and Heinlein’s would probably involve lots of sex. Asimov’s was probably too intellectual, can’t have a religion that involves a lot of thinking.

If we’re including Fantasy authors then how about Robert Jordan? His relgion would go on forever, get bigger and bigger, and never get to the point.

Personally, I am awaiting the day the Second Foundation reveals itself.

Every religion has some notion of appropriate punishment.


Punishment it is! I’ll join the Great Green Arkleseizure religion; I can await the Coming of the Great White Handkerchief.

Get a working version of that field projector from the sixth column and I can pretty much guarendamntee there will be a religion built around it in a week.

In southern California there is a group called the Church of Mars, which claims to regard Stranger in a Strange Land as their scripture. I have heard that Heinlein was appalled when he heard about them.

If I’m not mistaken it’s The Church of All Worlds, the name given in SiaSL.

IIRC, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle created another “Church” for subversive purposes in Footfall.