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Panorama that scientology program....


wetelectric
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Ive seen the southpark program and read a little about them. I just thought they were a joke, a bit of a celebrity fad. But after this program.. I think they are nuts! Following, digging up dirt on the journos, the fanaticism of the members... what a crazy cult.

Anyone else see it?

Thoughts?

edit mcEdit: Watch it here-  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/panorama/default.stm

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Ye, i saw it. I dont think they should have posted it on you tube with "other" comentary to what was happening.

No offence to any sientologists but, it is a bit crazy, they are just out to get your money. Come on, Aliens that landed on a mountian created life, please.

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Isn't the christian take on the beginning of things that some mythical creature (they call him God, though it wouldn't be a far stretch of the mind to call him an alien) did some stuff for 6 days after which there was a whole world, teeming with life which, amongst a host of other species, included Homo Erectus?

Then there's that whole immaculate conception shit thrown in for good measure.

Back in those days I'm sure the egyptians felt that those wacky christians were nothing but a troublesome cult and I do recall they had a good go attempting to eradicate them.

In case it isn't obvious, I'm an atheïst, but I respect any person's choice of religion, no matter how flawed I think his or her reasoning in this is.

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I think all religion is hoo ha (no offence). Thats just my view. I wasnt Chrisined anything and I intend to stay that way.

Back then when people were scared and starting to think "Why did that happen" or "Why is that there". They needed a reason but didnt have one. So they made up the Theory of "God".

Typical Everyday Conversation back Then:

Person - "Hey, How did we get here?"

Religion Creator - "Oh, ummmm, yes, I've got it. God Did it!"

Person - "Yes, i must have been this God Fellow, there is nothing to suggest elsewise."

I have to stress these are MY OWN OPIONIONS!!! Please dont let me change your mind.

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Isn't the christian take on the beginning of things that some mythical creature (they call him God, though it wouldn't be a far stretch of the mind to call him an alien) did some stuff for 6 days after which there was a whole world, teeming with life which, amongst a host of other species, included Homo Erectus?

Then there's that whole immaculate conception shit thrown in for good measure.

Back in those days I'm sure the egyptians felt that those wacky christians were nothing but a troublesome cult and I do recall they had a good go attempting to eradicate them.

In case it isn't obvious, I'm an atheïst, but I respect any person's choice of religion, no matter how flawed I think his or her reasoning in this is.

The bible's take on creation, not through a creationist or a "Christian" ideology of what the bible says, states that GOD (the superior being) had 6 days for creation. These days are not in a literal 24 hours sense of the the word. The bible speaks of a day being as a thousand years or more to GOD, as the time is really relative to his age, ergo infinitum. Therefore, the day could be any length of time segmented.

The bible also does not discredit that Dinosaurs or other forms of life weren't on earth BEFORE humans or mammals. It also does not resist the notion that there are animal adaptations to environment, etc. causes.

The idea that GOD cannot incept a woman with his active force would be a blow to his power to create the world and everything else, would it not? As it wasn't thrown in for good measure and was actually prophesied many hundreds of years earlier.

I suppose actually reading what you've come to create incomplete and false conclusions for would help. Because how could you ever defend what you 'don't believe' without knowing the full story on a matter. It seems more likely you were brought up in a religion that was enormously hypocritical and almost never used the bible in teaching and made you believe that it was a book of mystery and no one should or could understand it.

When you said "Back in those days I'm sure the Egyptians felt that those wacky christians" is completely off base. Egyptians didn't really have dealings with Christians, it was the Romans and Greeks who probably had thought that. The Egyptians were more familiar with the Judeans or Jewish race. The physical Jews were, for a long time, GOD's chosen people. But that right was ripped from them when they decided to continually swerve and do bad, especially after repeated loving discipline. Thusly this race became, not one of a physical nation, but a spiritual nation. These would be symbolically circumcised, as the Jews were physically, in their heart. These ones would come from every tribe, tongue and nation. This would be a pure, true religion, and knowing who these people were would be by their deeds/actions.

It's obvious who it's not, Catholicism to name one religion (and mostly all western, eastern religions), have not lived up to this creed. Support of nationalism and wars and many other things god disapproves of. And most of the time they know it, they just don't feel they need to do it.

The simple fact is that not all people who believe in the bible do so with blind eyes and minds. I for one won't believe anything without proof and testing. There's also no support that people just all of a sudden assumed that we were created by a higher being and figured that that was the most reasonable conclusion, so let's write it in a book. That's ludicrous.

Anyways, I do also respect that others believe what they want to believe. But, if you are going to state your own opinion (as I'll state mine), make sure others know it is only YOUR OPINION and you could be wrong about something you know, in truth, very little about.

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Heh, wetelectric's few comments about scientology on IRC started a 2 and a half hour debate on religion, which I doubt most of the participants of could be bothered to repeat here, but it was quite interesting.

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I had written this lengthy reply about the other parts of your post, but I feel its resulting discussion would not be very constructive and probably even flamebait, so I'll just respond to these two snippets:

When you said "Back in those days I'm sure the Egyptians felt that those wacky christians" is completely off base. Egyptians didn't really have dealings with Christians, it was the Romans and Greeks who probably had thought that.

Yup, got me there. I was thinking of the Romans.

Suetonius, a famous Roman historian, called Christians "a sect professing a new and mischievous religious belief". Not quite unlike how people view Scientology today.

But, if you are going to state your own opinion (as I'll state mine), make sure others know it is only YOUR OPINION and you could be wrong about something you know, in truth, very little about.

Well, given that this is a forum aimed at the computer literate more than the bible literate (and I surely hope it stays that way) I would think that that is pretty much a given. But if you insist:

The text above (both of them) are the (possibly/probably ill-informed) opinions of me. Rely on them at your own peril.

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Isn't everything you say your own opinion? Even if you present it as fact, it's still your opinion of what is fact. Even if you present it as someone else's opinion, it's your opinion of what their opinion is.

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Yup, got me there. I was thinking of the Romans.

Suetonius, a famous Roman historian, called Christians "a sect professing a new and mischievous religious belief". Not quite unlike how people view Scientology today.

To add, Suetonius says that Claudius “expelled from Rome the Jews, who were continually exciting disturbances, at the instigation of Chrestus (or Christ).” (Vit. Claud. cap. 25.) This was in response to the Christians not stopping the preaching work they were boldly doing.

And again, in telling of the cruel persecution under Nero he says “The Christians were punished, a set of men of a new and mischievous superstition.” (Vit. Nero. cap. 16.)

I wouldn't say that the Scientologists were closely similar Christians in the first century though. Tacitus mentioned the Christians in his Annals. In the account about Nero’s blaming the great fire of Rome in 64 CE he said that “Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus.”

I haven't seen any Scientologists tortured for their beliefs, perhaps slightly persecuted emotionally. But I do understand what you are trying to get at.

We do have to remember that many historians had strong prejudices towards certain things. That while it is historical evidence, somewhat, it's can be highly flavored with opinion. But then again, that is why you get many sources.

Well, given that this is a forum aimed at the computer literate more than the bible literate (and I surely hope it stays that way) I would think that that is pretty much a given. But if you insist:

The text above (both of them) are the (possibly/probably ill-informed) opinions of me. Rely on them at your own peril.

Not all people are as unconquered mentally as you or me.

Shaun---

Quite simply no. While people deem to argue about everything there remains fact. People tend to conclude for themselves what they want to believe, they delude their minds into thinking only what they want to accept. A person who's mother has died perhaps will go into a period where they don't believe it at all. They run about the house calling their mother's name, waiting for her. They truly believe it. But we know she's dead. Similarly, just because we believe something doesn't necessarily mean that it's true, there's a truth for everything, it's whether we believe it or not that makes the difference.

I could reason with anyone till they, or I, am blue in the face that a rock is hard. But if they don't see it, or choose to accept it, then that's their prerogative. But I know I'm right and they are wrong.

The world we live in likes to make everything with grey areas, there is no white or black anymore. While there really still is. The world likes to believe that everyone is right, and that's the only way people will ever get along. Still hasn't helped any.

There's always going to be true right and true wrong. It's for yourself to decide at what point you search for it, light grey or dark grey, or the truth.

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I haven't seen any Scientologists tortured for their beliefs, perhaps slightly persecuted emotionally. But I do understand what you are trying to get at.

Perhaps by other Scientologists.

Shaun---

Quite simply no. While people deem to argue about everything there remains fact. People tend to conclude for themselves what they want to believe, they delude their minds into thinking only what they want to accept. A person who's mother has died perhaps will go into a period where they don't believe it at all. They run about the house calling their mother's name, waiting for her. They truly believe it. But we know she's dead. Similarly, just because we believe something doesn't necessarily mean that it's true, there's a truth for everything, it's whether we believe it or not that makes the difference.

I could reason with anyone till they, or I, am blue in the face that a rock is hard. But if they don't see it, or choose to accept it, then that's their prerogative. But I know I'm right and they are wrong.

The world we live in likes to make everything with grey areas, there is no white or black anymore. While there really still is. The world likes to believe that everyone is right, and that's the only way people will ever get along. Still hasn't helped any.

There's always going to be true right and true wrong. It's for yourself to decide at what point you search for it, light grey or dark grey, or the truth.

I'm not really sure what this is supposed to mean in regard to what I said. What I was trying to get across was that asking people to say when they were speaking their opinion seems like a worthless thing; I wasn't saying there is no fact, merely that what each of us sees as fact is always going to be through our own little windows, and so inevitably anything we state as fact can only be from that perspective. In that sense anything we say is our opinion since there is no way to objectively prove what is reality (any proof would be subject to the exact same distortion as what we are trying to verify as true). Since that's the case (or at least I think so) saying "this is just my opinion" is kind of redundant.

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Not sure I would class the 'pay-as-you-go' cult of Scientology with any of the abrahamic religions. The founder of the cult, El Ron, created this thing to make money. Yes, various sects of the abrahamic religions have been very cult-like- demanding money for salvation, advocating violence against anyone who critisises them etc.. But these problems are generally bastardisations of the main creed. With Scientology this does not seem to be the case. In order to be 'saved' or be free of those pesky theatons one has to give thousands of pounds.... but meh, it's not as if anyone important is part of this cult. :)

ps. saw the irc 'debate'. The level of it was not my cup of tea :)

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I'm not really sure what this is supposed to mean in regard to what I said. What I was trying to get across was that asking people to say when they were speaking their opinion seems like a worthless thing; I wasn't saying there is no fact, merely that what each of us sees as fact is always going to be through our own little windows, and so inevitably anything we state as fact can only be from that perspective. In that sense anything we say is our opinion since there is no way to objectively prove what is reality (any proof would be subject to the exact same distortion as what we are trying to verify as true). Since that's the case (or at least I think so) saying "this is just my opinion" is kind of redundant.

I see what you mean. What I was trying to explain is that there is pure truth that isn't tainted by our own "window" on the world. And that we as humans choose to accept as is or distort it to our own means, either intentionally or otherwise. And just because we have a "window" of view of something doesn't necessarily mean that because of our viewing angle or amount of light we have or how big our window is mean that we can't see truth as it is. Just means that most of us won't see it but some will.

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I see what you mean. What I was trying to explain is that there is pure truth that isn't tainted by our own "window" on the world. And that we as humans choose to accept as is or distort it to our own means, either intentionally or otherwise. And just because we have a "window" of view of something doesn't necessarily mean that because of our viewing angle or amount of light we have or how big our window is mean that we can't see truth as it is. Just means that most of us won't see it but some will.

But it doesn't matter you do actually know the truth, because there's no way to prove that it is the truth to yourself or others, although you may convince yourself that you have. Again, I'm not saying there is no pure truth, just that it's impossible to know for sure what it is even if we are actually right in that what we believe is that pure truth. I'm talking on a pretty philosophical level here of course, it's impractical to actual live thinking like that all the time or you'll go crazy.

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Not sure I would class the 'pay-as-you-go' cult of Scientology with any of the abrahamic religions. The founder of the cult, El Ron, created this thing to make money. Yes, various sects of the abrahamic religions have been very cult-like- demanding money for salvation, advocating violence against anyone who critisises them etc.. But these problems are generally bastardisations of the main creed. With Scientology this does not seem to be the case. In order to be 'saved' or be free of those pesky theatons one has to give thousands of pounds.... but meh, it's not as if anyone important is part of this cult. :)

Yeah, Scientology was created by a possibly schizophrenic guy to make money, but kind of similar and also in some cases dissimilar to how some religions have become "bastardised"—I don't know if that is the word I'd use, I'm pretty anti-organised religion so I'd prefer just "changed"; I think most of them have always been destructive in some way, but I digress—Scientology has spawned Free Zone Scientology, which has broken off from the Church of Scientology and spurns those money making and manipulative ways, which of course that means the CoS tries to fuck with them as much as possible. Anyway, the point is I don't think your description describes all of Scientology, just Scientology as it was originally intended. I still think they're all nutters though.

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But it doesn't matter you do actually know the truth, because there's no way to prove that it is the truth to yourself or others, although you may convince yourself that you have. Again, I'm not saying there is no pure truth, just that it's impossible to know for sure what it is even if we are actually right in that what we believe is that pure truth. I'm talking on a pretty philosophical level here of course, it's impractical to actual live thinking like that all the time or you'll go crazy.

I could understand that, if it was that I never knew the black and white of it. While I don't need to prove the authenticity of something, anything, to be right or wrong, someone could accept it or not does not change what it truly is. To some truth, right or wrong, is a perception conjured, borne, in the mind. Perhaps that is true. Right and wrong is a perception of reality. But then again everything is, no? So to accept that there is no right or wrong would ultimately dilute life as being real, a farce is to live. We are neither alive nor dead and thus would extinguish the thought of an afterlife or the life we live today. Right or wrong, dead or alive, cannot be proven nor disproved.

While you may believe that I couldn't prove right or wrong is correct, but then I could be incorrect, no? The idea that I could sway you to believe fact is neither wrong nor right or either wrong and right, at the same time. So essentially your saying that for you to believe or know real truth you'd have to also learn all the untruth as well. But that you stating that there's no way to prove right or wrong to me and I to you. Inherently, that means that you are both right and wrong and neither right nor wrong.

See, it's not impossible to know truth. It's not even impossible to prove it to myself. And it's just improbable to prove it to others that don't care to or want to accept it as such, they'd just give the same response you gave.

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Wow, quite a poetic response.

I could understand that, if it was that I never knew the black and white of it. While I don't need to prove the authenticity of something, anything, to be right or wrong, someone could accept it or not does not change what it truly is. To some truth, right or wrong, is a perception conjured, borne, in the mind. Perhaps that is true. Right and wrong is a perception of reality. But then again everything is, no? So to accept that there is no right or wrong would ultimately dilute life as being real, a farce is to live. We are neither alive nor dead and thus would extinguish the thought of an afterlife or the life we live today. Right or wrong, dead or alive, cannot be proven nor disproved.

I agree that whether one accepts something as truth or not does change its place in reality (or maybe it does but that's not my argument), just I don't believe we ever know its place in reality.

I don't think the inability to know right or wrong need affect the way one lives life. Regardless of its basis in reality we still perceive our own vital existence and our feelings and experiences. Even if everything we perceive is unreality, to us it appears real and we can just make the decision to enjoy life even if ultimately everything is uncertain. I don't think certainty is a necessary component of life, all we can do is rely on what we can see and feel and think as unsettling as it may be for some. An imagined reality is identical to definite reality from our own point of view, if there is no way to distinguish why should it affect the way we treat that which we perceive?

While you may believe that I couldn't prove right or wrong is correct, but then I could be incorrect, no? The idea that I could sway you to believe fact is neither wrong nor right or either wrong and right, at the same time. So essentially your saying that for you to believe or know real truth you'd have to also learn all the untruth as well. But that you stating that there's no way to prove right or wrong to me and I to you. Inherently, that means that you are both right and wrong and neither right nor wrong.

Yes, there are no absolutes in our perception of reality, I think even Descartes's "cogito, ergo sum" is flawed in its implied absolutism as is my statement that we can never prove truth and everything I say in this post. If one were to take my statement as truth (heh), even to learn all untruth wouldn't allow you to know what was true or untrue even if you knew all truth.

See, it's not impossible to know truth. It's not even impossible to prove it to myself. And it's just improbable to prove it to others that don't care to or want to accept it as such, they'd just give the same response you gave.

I don't think it is possible to prove it in absolute terms, even if we can prove something within our own perceived reality I don't think we can prove the reality. Proof is a function of our perception, I suppose it depends on one's perception of perceptions.

I have got to stop saying perception.

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You know, I was thinking about it, the idea that there is no absolute truth, or that we can't attain to know it an only perceived ideology of it, it's root is that we humans are indecisive creatures that hate to be responsible for our actions or thoughts, but also hate for other ideas to be imposed on themselves.

Especially since as science gets better we seem much smaller in the grand scheme of things, perhaps out of place, and thus stick to what we perceive to believe is truth because without it we could/would be lost.

I suppose we should get back on topic...

-------------------------------------------------

The thing is that with ANY type of religion we can't discount something because of one sect or part of it. Take Christianity, it's was started with the best of intentions, pure worship (spiritually their ruler was Jesus; commanded to come to earth to lead the people out of spiritual darkness and to

give his life for righteous ones), something that was wholly diluted by the Scribes and the Pharisees (and the proselytes) of the Jews. But in time apostates (people will ill intentions of ruin and twisting things to their own means; ie. money, power, greed, etc.) infiltrated the First Century Christians and thus spawned Apostate Sects (of which mostly all Christian Religions are a result), which was prophesied to happen. The bible has proven to be historically and geographically accurate, and all past prophecies have come true, written by 60 men over thousands of year and in complete harmony with itself.

Then again you have Scientology whose initial intentions were for monetary gain -  power, greed - based off of a fictional, scientifically abstract, book (something certainly not in common with the bible). The adherents were to give large sums of money to be "part" of a larger organization where you were to "confess" of your "sins" or whatever they call it. They follow a mans idea that cannot prove (to at least a swaying "true" perception) any of what he says.

BUT, not much unlike where most of Christianity (mostly all religions are too) is now, definitely not what Jesus taught or what the bible teaches. But now every religion is like that (forcing followers to give money or else hellfire, saying that abortion is OK, supporting the war efforts and politics).

--------------

Deags - As a church member I think you should be more worried about the religion that you are in and the claims that cannot be backed up.

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You know, I was thinking about it, the idea that there is no absolute truth, or that we can't attain to know it an only perceived ideology of it, it's root is that we humans are indecisive creatures that hate to be responsible for our actions or thoughts, but also hate for other ideas to be imposed on themselves.

Especially since as science gets better we seem much smaller in the grand scheme of things, perhaps out of place, and thus stick to what we perceive to believe is truth because without it we could/would be lost.

I suppose we should get back on topic...

Heh, it is pretty funny that that discussion started because of a simple request to Cooper to state when he was speaking his opinion. I'd like to thank you anyway for the most interesting discussion I've had on this forum for a while, I think there has been a dearth of that here for some time.

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