Scientology - Through the Door

Interviews

Monday, 11th February, 2008 07:57:25pm

Name or Alias: Fair Use
Training and/or processing level: none
Org or location: A large west coast city
Time involved in the Church of Scientology: 1 day?
Recommended Website - http://
1. How did you first become acquainted with the Church of Scientology?
Friend in high school mentioned going to scientology, I asked 'what's that', she says 'they do experiments'. Duh, I think she made up the word while doing acid and didn't know it was for real. Moved away, looked in phone book to see if there was any scientology there, nope, went to library to ask if they had any books about it, they handed me DMSMH. I read it, it made sense (well it would, to a naive 15 year old). Awhile later there was a personals ad in the paper about scientology, gave an address to a house, I went there, they wanted $$ hard sell for com course (which I could hear them doing in the back 'do fish swim' 'do birds fly'), I was a penniless high school student & asked if they had student rates or anything cheaper, they said no, so I left. Then they started bombing me with junk mail. This was 1969 or 1970 or so. Someone took me to a TM introductory meeting once too, and they wanted too much money for that as well. What can I say, I'm a cheapskate.

2. What initially appealed to you about scientology?
The idea of dianetics and reactive mind causing all your problems, and that auditing could fix them. I have a busy mind that works best when trained, so thought this would be interesting. But I kinda left it at that.

Moved again, bigger city, took myself for a long walk one sunday morning, found the local org on my way, went in, talked to staff, asked if they were hiring cause I could use a part time job while in college, they said yeah, got some paperwork, put me on the meter and put me right to work. One of them took me upstairs where I started typing some telex about wearing hats onto a gestetner master. There were toothbrushes in the bathroom, so I figured out there were people living there. Weird but not the weirdest I've ever seen so NBD. Then they put me to work answering the phone, i had to log every incoming call for who called, what time, who they wanted. Then I guess someone passed a course so they took them around and everyone clapped and cheered. More weird, but whatever.

I was 16 years old. It did not occur to me to ask how much they were going to pay me, and I signed two 'promissory notes' for 'Staff Status 1 and Staff Status 2' which I would have to pay back $75 if I bailed. I was so thrilled to have a job that I didn't think about that.



3. Were there problems in your life that you thought scientology would address?
I wear glasses. DMSMH said it could cure bad eyesight, so that would be a cool benefit. I had no 'issues' as such that they would normally pounce on as I was into rigidly controlling thoughts & emotions. If I could be Mr Spock I would have (sucked to be me, so that's how I dealt with it). I thought it might help with that too.

4. Did you see, experience, or hear about things that didn't seem right while you were in the Church of Scientology? What were they, and what convinced you to set aside your feelings?
I remember some guy coming in with a new emeter (prob. mark 5, nice wood), and saying how he got it through customs saying it was a religious artifact, and laughed. Hmmm. I wasn't exactly religious so I figured if he could joke about it being a 'religion' for tax purposes that was cool.

5. Why did you choose to stay in the Church of Scientology?
Fortunately I didn't. I finally finished up for the day and went home (walked, couple miles). I told my landlady about my great new job and she was skeptical, asked me how much I would be making, I didn't know, explained how dumb that was, did I know anything about these people, how weird it sounded, what kind of church would do that (I mentioned the promissory notes), so I started having second thoughts. I talked to my folks and they thought it was pretty stupid too, and reminded me that I was under age to be signing any contracts like that, and that I should just tell them I changed my mind, and that they couldn't enforce the notes because I was a minor.

6. Were you staff or public? If staff, was it at a mission or an org? Were you ever in the Sea Org or OSA? Which unit? If not on staff, did you ever volunteer to 'help out'?
Staff. Possibly the shortest duration staff ever, and those bastards never gave my skateboard back (I found it during my walk, parked it under a chair in the org and never saw it again).

7. Why did you leave the Church of Scientology? Was there a "final straw"?
So I called them back after getting a talking to about how dumb I was (how true), said I wasn't going to follow through, and that they couldn't enforce the promissory notes. The guy grumbled a little but (so I thought) left it at that. Turns out they called my parents for months afterwards to dun them for the money. Meanwhile I went to the library (bigger city, more books) and they had a lot more stuff about scientology, including some critical stuff. I figured out that I had escaped with my life.

8. Do you think the Church of Scientology needs to change some of its practices? If so, what should be changed? How did those practices affect your life?
It's a scam, always has been, always will be. They prey on people who are naive and lonely, it's all about how much money they can wring out of you. In some ways no different than any other religion, in other ways their own particular brand of nasty.


9. If the items you listed in the previous question were changed, would you consider rejoining or staying in the Church of Scientology? If so, why?
Nope, never. I'm (much) older and wiser now, and see the hubbard stuff for what it really is, the made-up fantasy of a con artist. For a long time I thought the 'tech' was probably OK (what little I knew of it) just the organization and religious stuff was crazy dysfunctional. I now see it for the nonsense it is though. If the church is crazy, it's only because the founder was too.

10. Any additional comments you would like to make?
About a year after my experience, which I kept nice and quiet about at college, one of my friends got sucked into it, took a couple courses and then got recruited to the sea org and vanished. Bastards stole my friend, she was really gifted and a sweet girl, and I was pissed and wanted revenge.

For some reason I went back to the org (they forgot who I was or it was all different people by then I guess) did the test etc. for laughs, I had to give my name & address in the visitor log & wrote DO NOT SEND ME ANY MAIL. They did anyway, stupid clams, so I wrote back and told them if they sent me any more crap I would sue them. The next thing I got from them was a 'PTS TYPE C' on goldenrod, calling me a mental case and a squirrel roller coastering, so I took that and myself back to the org to have a word with the 'ethics officer' who signed it, got thrown out bodily (!) but at least it got me off their mailing list.

I have been collecting clam crap ever since, including a complete set of red blue & green vols, early (pre 1975) editions of ronbooks with the crazy cover art, and now have my own Mark 5 meter which I bought about 15 years ago from a guy who blew & put all his stuff up for sale.

If all they did was separate movie stars from their money, I wouldn't have an issue with them. What creeps me out is the 'operation freakout' stuff, and infiltrating government and business, acting like a whole goddam spy network. The way they treat critics and ex-members is reprehensible and for this reason they need to be exposed and stopped.


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