Date: October 07, 2021 01:18PM
The reason I ended up on RFM is that I was initially an active member on an anti-scientologist forum (Operation Clambake). One of the posters there was a guy with the pseudonym Ned Ludd who was an exmo and wanted to find out the details of the harms of scientology, in a sort of "the cult next door" kind of way. He mentioned this site, I came here - and my work promptly blocked my access to Operation Clambake. Fascinated by what I discovered here (the mindf*ck of mormonism, the community of exmos here, the wide ranging debates...).
I was (and remain, but less actively) an anti-scientologist because I was in early contact with its "ideas" (which are arrant nonsense but appeal to a certain type of person - many of whom have the highest of motives, but poor instincts...). One of my friends at boarding school (not the brightest and a little bit emotionally lost) was very rich and fell into their hands. He's still in 45 years later (and quite high up). He's no longer rich.
From my perspective, scientology is without doubt weirder than mormonism, if only because mormonism is at least connected (usually through Smithian plagiarism ;-) to existing, familiar currents of religious thought (christianity, the occult, etc.). Scientology is pompously phrased BS with invented "concepts" for which they hijack words and language - a clear sign of a cult.
There are also differences simply because of mormonism's age: the Scientos are into their third generation of BICs, whereas mormonism is several past that (you all probably know how many...).
Although both "religions" were founded for the very same reason (to bilk the faithful), mormonism has always been more of a religion than scientology because of its claimed "restoration" of christianity, giving it a known frame of reference, despite its deviations.
Scientology is only a religion for fiscal purposes, although it also uses the "cult" model - and the only frame of reference is whatever passed through the drugg-addled, psychopathic mind of L. Ron Hubbard.
Mormonism has at least some connection to our shared culture and history.
Scientology is JUST a scam.
Date: October 07, 2021 04:12PM
It's bizarre, but my very LDS father, who collected great books but never read any, had a copy of Dianetics in our basement. I have no idea how he obtained it.
I remember Dale Carnegie--my aforementioned dad sent it--and I read the book early in my mission. It was appalling: superficial, glib, insincere. It meshed well with the religion we were practicing and preaching, so it reinforced my nascent revulsion at the whole mission concept.
I spent the next year wishing for sincerity, genuineness, honesty. I found it in a couple of companions but not in the mission or the church. Numbers, numbers, numbers. . .
Mormonism is the Dale Carnegie of moral systems.
Date: October 07, 2021 02:48PM
Very interesting Tom. (I'd love to see more posts from you of the lengthier kind!)
I agree with you that Scientology is only a scam, not even a religion. I've written here recently of a friend's son who joined as a young adult. He spent a year with them in England (being indoctrinated, in my view). His mom is at her wit's end because of all the $$$ he's given them. Currently he's making tons of money in a lucrative job he happened to land in and I don't even want to know how much of it he forks over to them.
It frustrates me when I see people caught up in such groups, to their own detriment. It really helps me to figure out from posts like yours how this happens.
I'm definitely not equipped, nor do I have the heart, to debate his beliefs with him. He is entirely unreachable, at least at this point. He's a rabid anti re all the pandemic measures undertaken to curb spread of the disease. Yet he finally acceded to getting jabbed or he would have lost his job as they instituted strict measures in order to be able to carry on their projects. Lucky for him he is at least that sensible because now he's protected from significant illness (should he become infected) if only due to his financial interests. Which, annoyingly, also align with those of Scientology.