In Defense of Scientology

Yeah, I kind of thought that might get your attention.

Don’t worry, it’s not what you’re thinking. Nothing exists in isolation; every object stands in contrast to its background, every thing is relative to everything else. So when I take a stand in defense of an admittedly pernicious, powerful, and downright idiotic cult, you knows that it is not that I love L. Ron more, but that I love Rome less.

Specifically, Constantine-era Rome, just around the time of the Nicene Creeds.

These Anonymous folks have been getting a lot of attention lately. They hates the Scientologists, my precious, they hates them forever. They release Hawking-voiced manifestos accompanied by Master-Chief knock-offs and time-lapse cloudscapes. They tell us all about how bad Scientology is. They launch DDoS attacks, and organize protests; they live in the wires. They are Max Headroom made flesh.

But what exactly is so bad about Scientology? What do they do to get people so riled up?

Well, let’s see. They expect their followers to believe really stupid things about the universe, things that fly in the face of pretty much every scientific discovery ever made. They extort money from their parishioners victims. They litigate, harass and intimidate those who challenge them from without; they stifle, brainwash, and (some say) even kill those who question them from within. They do not tolerate dissent. They decide how and when women will be allowed to reproduce, strip away a woman’s control of her own body. And they are growing; before long, many fear, they will have their hands in the back pockets of governments the world over. Who knows how many politicians and power brokers already suck at L. Ron’s teat, while some radio-controlled jester gibbers and capers and leaps around on Oprah’s couch to keep our attention off the guys loading up the truck in the back alley?

Is it just me, or are these guys complete fucking amateurs?

You think the Hubbardheads have political power? There’s a word for the electoral chances of any political candidate who admits to being a Scientologist: “negligible”. By an odd coincidence, the same word describes the prospects of any political candidate who doesn’t admit — nay, proclaim — that they’re a Christian.

Litigation? The crushing of dissent? Only pussies run to the courts. The largest atheist group on the planet — 35,000 members — just got deleted from MySpace. They violated no terms of service. They committed no offense. But they were found offensive, nonetheless; some Christians complained. Now they are gone.

Not even academia, the self-proclaimed haven of free and enlightened discourse, escapes the shadow. Wilfrid Laurier University, here in Ontario, just denied official recognition to the Laurier Freethought Alliance because the promotion of “a fulfilling life without religion and superstition” would be potentially offensive to the believers on campus. (Note that in this case, nobody even complained. Nobody had a chance to complain, because the whole damn group was aborted before it even came to term.)

I’m not reading about this in the media. Feeding ‘“Atheist and Agnostic Group” AND myspace‘ into Google News nets me two measly hits. “Laurier Freethought Alliance gets me none at all. The only people who seem to even be aware of this, much less give a damn, are the biologists and atheists themselves. You gotta read the science blogs to even hear about it.

No lawsuits. No messy publicity. Just a few complaints, and *poof*. As if we never existed. Now that’s power.

Oppression of dissidents? Demonization of outsiders? Institutionalized violence? Penetration into the highest levels of societal control? Rs and Ks, there is just no comparison.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve got no more time for the Scientologists than I have for any other religion1. (Actually, now that I think of it, sometimes I have quite a lot of time for the Jehovah’s Witnesses. I even invite them in and ask them questions. More often than not, they’re the ones who ask to leave.) Superstition is a really lousy basis for figuring out how the universe works. But going after the Scientologists in a world full of Christians, Muslims, and Trekkies is like surveying a world ravaged by AIDS and devoting yourself to the eradication of the hangnail.

I don’t know who these Anonymous people are. But I think they should stop picking on someone their own size.

1There was a time when I would have simply dismissed the whole thing by pointing out that anyone stupid enough to buy into that crap probably deserves to be exploited. I still believe that, but the problem is the world is evidently cheek-to-jowl with people who are that stupid, and the smarter folks who raise and butcher them use their herds to do an awful lot of damage to the rest of us.

This entry was written by Peter Watts , posted on Monday February 04 2008at 07:02 pm , filed under ass-hamsters, rant . Bookmark the permalink . Post a comment below or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

24 Responses to “In Defense of Scientology”

  1. Mistakes over hundreds and thousands of years take time to correct. But if you act now we may avoid a million years galactic war.

    We don’t rank charities to give, we don’t rank evils to fight. We do what we can. Like when you see a car crash, you have no option but to help – Tom Cruise.

    Actually Sunny Bono is a house representative who is a Scientology. Guess what, he was responsible for the Extended Copyright Law, also known as Mickey Mouse Law. He wanted copyright forever but of course he didn’t get it, just extended. (Sound like their thousand year employee contracts?) They know long ago that copyright was their Hercules heel or their only shield against the SP’s. Bono died in 1998. His wife Mary Bono completed the law, named after him. Mary was also a Scientology, took over his seat. Now she distance herself from Scientology, perhaps just to avoid losing the seat. The Bono’s are often credited for pressuring foreign govt to take it easy on scientology.

  2. Well, I can’t speak for the rest of Anon, but for me, it’s all about strangling this one in the crib. Maybe we’ll learn something we can apply to the big ones.

    Although personally, I doubt it. The only way to kill Big Religion seems to be letting it rot from inside.

  3. As a tidbit of information about Anonymous, this whole spectacle here is just another joke of a sorts. “Anonymous” is not a organization with a purpose, it’s just a bunch of lurkers in the internets who love their memes and laughs.

    Trust me, these people have no real political agenda.

  4. Contrary to what Fox News would have anyone believe, the last Anon poster is right. ‘Anonymous’ as a group is about as coordinated as a bar fight.

    While I find myself no fan or proponent of any self-delusion, especially when concerned with the proliferation of knowledge and understanding, I have to take issue with the way that Anon is going about contending with Scientology. By using illegal methods and restrictions of rights (DDoS is basically disallowing free speech on a specific domain, by locking down said domain), it allows Scientology to defend itself legally, where it has proven they have the jack to buy the defenses necessary.

    Instead, the leaking of internal documents (while still might be illegal) is providing a lot more ammunition and weight against Scientology ideologically. A nice start in this area would be:

    http://www.clambake.org/archive/books/tsos/sos.html

    Scientology rant aside, the basic tools for avoiding exploitation, governmentally, socially, or ‘spiritually’ is education. It wasn’t God that made the lightning because you’re a bad boy, it was a natural process that can be explained. It wasn’t Xenu that has imprisoned you here, it’s your own attitude that keeps you down. It isn’t the Pope that should make your moral decisions; you should be responsible for your own. That rock in Mecca? Guess what… its a fuckin’ rock.

    Thank you, Dr. Watts, for pointing out the larger threat.

  5. Personally, I’ve never bought into the excuse that just because other people are bastards, it’s ok to be a dirty rat bastard too. The existence of previous viciously shitty religions doesn’t make Scientology any less repugnant. All the ick in the world won’t make them less icky. And an anti-cult is still a cult, you crazy “Project Chanology” bullshitters. It’s not like Scientology is that contagious. You can only catch it if you *want* to.

    (In defense of the Catholic church, Georg Gaenswein is hella hot.)

  6. Personally, I’ve never bought into the excuse that just because other people are bastards, it’s ok to be a dirty rat bastard too. The existence of previous viciously shitty religions doesn’t make Scientology any less repugnant. All the ick in the world won’t make them less icky. And an anti-cult is still a cult, you crazy “Project Chanology” bullshitters. It’s not like Scientology is that contagious. You can only catch it if you *want* to.

    (In defense of the Catholic church, Georg Gaenswein is hella hot.)

  7. I’m pretty sure Trekkies are not a threat to life, liberty or civilization, while Scientology, idk, maybe.

    But Trekkies are a harmless group of fanciful people who like to dress up like characters from a TV show, from what I’ve seen.

    I remember I went to a lecture a few years ago here at the library where I work, and this one was a linguistics lecture on, get this, the Klingon language. No one attending was dressed like a Klingon, but there were a number of really smart amateur linguists and even some professionals, enjoying the mental exercise of working with a simulated language.

    It convinced me that while space fantasy isn’t necessarily a serious endeavor (it won’t cure cancer, for instance) it is harmless at worst, and at best keeps peoples’ mind free and loose, working in new ways. I can’t agree that Trekkies are anywhere near as dangerous as Scientologists. :)

  8. Trekkies don’t get tax free donations, indeed any donations at all LOL. This piss off every tax payers. I don’t need even to debate about Anonymous. Bottom line – they successfully put the evil ways of scientology on my face. Tax free? I thought the cross has something to do with God and Jesus. No, it’s all about xenu and theta-bopping guns.

    Dianna took on the arm dealers because she didn’t know. LRH took on the psychiatrists and drug companies because he had no choice. Yes, the biggest enemy was themselves.

    The Geeks hate them, using 10 year old tactics, raiding companies to get server logs. See what happened on Google bombs, digg, etc. Now the Geeks have the deepest pockets and don’t care about Moxon.

    They silence journalists, who will revenge given half the chance. All big news outlets have reported on Anonymous rather favorably. Gawker is half Geek and half journalist with deep pockets – go Gawker. CNET TV even put up Go Anon Go logo.

    Everybody hate lawyers. Moxon pissed me off big time. And lawyers hate scientology because they made lawyers look stupid, nobody is afraid of lawyers anymore.

    The list goes on and on. I can’t find any natural allies with scientology. They are going to blow.

  9. Wrong. FAIL!

    They don’t hate Scientologists, they oppose the cxrime and abuses by the Scientololgy crime syndicate.

  10. Well, there’s always this:
    http://richarddawkins.net/article,2222,n,n

  11. I do hate Scientology as a whole, a cult, a “religion”, what they stand for and do collectively. “Them” refers to Scientology, not Scientologists, most of whom are victims losing money and everything else.

    Instead of deflecting blame, people take it out on Scientology. For example, everybody don’t like IRS. They can’t do anything on IRS but they can now blame Scientology for their tax exempt status while owning cruise ships.

    The record industry law suits on housewife and students. They can do anything but they can blame Scientology and keep uploading copyrighted material. You just can make a difference by uploading a song to share. But you can by uploading a Tom Cruise banned video.

    Everybody hate frivolous law suits, because low income lawyers just send letters to any small business to blackmail money. Business owners have to spend more to fight them than settle. They can’t do anything for frivolous law suits but they can easily challenge incompetence Moxon.

    And on and on …

    By the way, I feel very creepy when I read from the scientology site that they have a private army to response to disasters. Of course they get thanks afterward from fireman etc. But that creeps me out. I was thinking what qualification do they have to be allowed to fight fires?

    It totally creeps me out when the 2nd crazy celeb, the overweight woman who’s name I can’t spell. She defend Tom by saying that they do good, response to disasters, go into Red Cross centers to help children with coma. OMG, what have they done. How come Red Cross allow them in? Unsurprised with coma children? I was looking for the story again, can’t find it. I was going to call the Red Cross (I’m a donor).

    But reading about the stories of ex Sea Org, etc it all made sense. They are robbing Peter to pay Paul, getting praise in the process.

    Also all the healing power of COS doesn’t make any sense in science. The FDA can’t approve drugs that can cure even 90% of people, while 1% getting worse.

  12. Scientologists Dont Want You to Read FREE MIND FREE BODY book by D R Boisse!

    Buy this book now! Free Mind Free Body helps readers use their own minds and it will help people to break free of scientology cult mind control by promoting that people think for themselves and understand self-imprisonment and setting yourself free from self limitations that other people put on you. The Scientologists dont want people to know how their mind works outside of their stupid cult because then scientology.org wont be able to trick their followers anymore. Read what the scientologists dont want you to know! read Free Mind Free Body and tell your friends so we can help those people who get tricked and sucked into scientology from their mind control tactics preying on weak minded people who just dont know any better. I found the book at http://www.FreeMindFreeBody.com its available worldwide

  13. Hey, look! A pay-for-knowledge institution that preaches against self-imprisonment!

    Sounds like Scientology’s claims to me. Good job at failing, spammer.

  14. You know, the Scientology thing is based on the idea that you can buy your way to enlightenment, salvation and joy, which makes it a business, not a religion in the strictest sense.

    In protestantism, for instance, donate whatever you want to the church, do whatever good deeds you like, but that doesn’t effect your enlightenment – the causal factor is money-free: according to doctrine, you have to repent and give your life over to God. They love it if you give, but it can’t buy you into Heaven.

    Are there any modern religions which require that you *pay* to be in the body of believers?

  15. Alright, this has absolutely nothing to do with this subject, but is way too awesome to pass up:

    The Multiple World interpretation of quantum physics… as demonstrated with Mario.

    Yes, Mario, the turtle-bashing Italian plumber, being used to visualize the Multiverse.

    Peter, have you seen this madness?

  16. Tax Scientology said…

    Actually Sunny Bono is a house representative who is a Scientology…

    I did not know that. Okay, make that “mostly negligable”.

    Anonymous said…

    Well, I can’t speak for the rest of Anon, but for me, it’s all about strangling this one in the crib. Maybe we’ll learn something we can apply to the big ones.

    Yeah, I considered that. Start small, work up. But I can’t shake the suspicion that there’s another factor at work here: the widespread belief that somehow Scientology is intrinsically worse than mainstream superstitions, that its tenets are somehow more absurd, its practices more pernicious. And in everything from gender politics to suppression of dissent to outright hate-mongering, I just don’t see it. I mean, seriously people: how can you compete with the Crusades? The Inquisition? Focus on the Family?

    Another Anonymous said…

    As a tidbit of information about Anonymous, this whole spectacle here is just another joke of a sorts. “Anonymous” is not a organization with a purpose, it’s just a bunch of lurkers in the internets who love their memes and laughs.

    Natural selection doesn’t care about motives, though. Only actions. Let’s see what benefits to inclusive fitness these actions bring.

    Carl said…

    …Scientology rant aside, the basic tools for avoiding exploitation, governmentally, socially, or ‘spiritually’ is education. It wasn’t God that made the lightning because you’re a bad boy, it was a natural process that can be explained. It wasn’t Xenu that has imprisoned you here, it’s your own attitude that keeps you down. It isn’t the Pope that should make your moral decisions; you should be responsible for your own. That rock in Mecca? Guess what… its a fuckin’ rock.

    And while I applaud the cases in point, I have doubts about the effectiveness of education. The whole Creationism/ID movement is deeply and systemically embedded in the US educational system; there are enthusiastic movements afoot to water down the teaching of evolution throughout the southern states, and they are usually being spearheaded by elected members of local school boards. “Education” is of limited impact when the people running the system refuse to be educated, when mountains of empirical evidence are rejected outright simply because they contradict scripture.

    No, education is not the answer. A cull, on the other hand…

    The Lake Fever said…

    It’s not like Scientology is that contagious. You can only catch it if you *want* to.

    This is true — religion’s tendency to swoop in on people when they’re most down and vulnerable notwithstanding. But you don’t have to be a member of a cult to be victimized by it. That MySpace atheist group is a case-in-point; their sole and sufficient crime, it seems, was to hold an opposing viewpoint.

    bec-87rb said…

    I’m pretty sure Trekkies are not a threat to life, liberty or civilization, while Scientology, idk, maybe.

    Becster, you gotta grant me some artistic license here. You had the same kinda reaction to my description of Collins as a “fucking moron”, as I recall, and you gotta remember there are grains of salt to be had. Hyperbole is permissible. In this case, I just threw in Trekkies to lighten the tone, not because I have anything against them. (Hell, I used to be one myself.)

    Or maybe you’re just in the camp first pitched by my older brother back when I was in high school. “We can take you not being serious,” he opined. “It’s your not being funny we can’t stand.”

    Fredric L. Rice said…

    They don’t hate Scientologists, they oppose the cxrime and abuses by the Scientololgy crime syndicate.

    That’s an interesting distinction, Fred. A bit like saying “We don’t hate the Nazis, it’s just that genocide and thousand-year-reich stuff we oppose…”

    Back to bec-87rb, who said…

    Are there any modern religions which require that you *pay* to be in the body of believers?

    Depends on your definition of “require”. A lot of Christian sects take the whole “tithing” thing very seriously. Mainstream church services routinely have “offerings”, in which all those who donate — and those who do not — are on public display. The TV evangelists do everything they can to bully, coerce, and guilt the gullible into rendering unto God what is Caesar’s. And I’m given to understand that the venerable Catholic tradition of purchasing “indulgences” is not as much in the past as some would have you believe…

    And finally, completely off-topic, Alehkhs said…

    Yes, Mario, the turtle-bashing Italian plumber, being used to visualize the Multiverse. Peter, have you seen this madness?

    Not until you pointed it out. And then I spent half an hour trying to figure out if the various mazes and platforms were supposed to comprise a literal recreation of the dual-slit experiment.

    I’m pretty sure the answer is no.

  17. I asked:
    Are there any modern religions which require that you *pay* to be in the body of believers?

    You replied:
    Depends on your definition of “require”.

    Makes sense. My definition is you pay for the right to get into the inner sanctum. You cannot be considered in the body of believers unless you pony up.

    You offered this:
    A lot of Christian sects take the whole “tithing” thing very seriously. Mainstream church services routinely have “offerings”, in which all those who donate — and those who do not — are on public display.

    I went to several different denominations of Christianity, and I never left any pressure to contribute money to be in the body. I might have felt social pressure to, say, not take out a fiver from the collection plate. :) But the sense I got was that you would be *cheap* not to put a dollar in, not that you were damned. I got a definite message in among the Methodists and the Presbyterians that donating was Works, and Works didn’t cut it with salvation.

    You say:
    The TV evangelists do everything they can to bully, coerce, and guilt the gullible into rendering unto God what is Caesar’s.

    Most of them wouldn’t know God if He/She/It bit them on the hindquarters.

    And I’m given to understand that the venerable Catholic tradition of purchasing “indulgences” is not as much in the past as some would have you believe…

    Do you know for sure that you have to buy indulgences to be in the church and to attain salvation? I have been to very few Catholic services, so it’s terra incognita to me …

  18. Becster, you gotta grant me some artistic license here. You had the same kinda reaction to my description of Collins as a “fucking moron”, as I recall, and you gotta remember there are grains of salt to be had.

    Guilty. Pretty much the same, yeah, I think you’re right. I don’t know you, of course, but I see you roaring through the meadow of ideas, mowing down the weeds and flowers alike, and the results rooster-tail behind you and fall as mulch.

    I wanna, I wanna, buy you a metaphorical weed-wacker; you could retain the ability to lay waste to the meadow, but you’d have a narrower implement, a finer scalpel?

    When you follow the dictum, “Kill em all, let God sort em out” I can never be sure who your intended enemies in fact were?

    Hyperbole is permissible.

    Oh, sure, for comic effect, I do see. Didn’t mean to be humorless.

    In this case, I just threw in Trekkies to lighten the tone, not because I have anything against them. (Hell, I used to be one myself.)

    *gasp*

    *points to peter*

    NERD!!!!!

    *re-thinks*

    *points to self*

    ehem, “nerd”.

  19. Anyone considering the possibility that the “Anonymous” net group or “Project Chanology” might be “false flag” operations in part being conducted sub rosa by or on behalf of either mainstream Scientologists or some splinter or other factional group?

    The tactics being employed may be such that they are intended to garner sympathy or some kind of “defense of scientology” by Anon group or other efforts to take actions that are not only likely to be ineffective, but also to be perceived as offensive, and it may be that the “defense of religion” and freedom of belief, from a mainstream religion or other is the intended goal, in order to try to inject not only publicity and some support for Scientology, but also to synthesize and/or justify a possible backlash, all of which could serve Scientology’s more subversive and sophisticated efforts and goals in the long run.

    I also think it should at least be considered, although Anon/Chan are most likely chaotic small time net based efforts, that perhaps we are seeing some other religious denomination demonize Scientology for the purpose of competive marketing or to increase their own “mind share” of the gullible and those in need of or prone to wanting some form of spiritual belief system that is not institutional or mainstream, in order to bring in those who might otherwise gravitate to Scientology.

    Pretty speculative, I know, but religions, including Scientology, have been in internecine psyops and “warfare” long before now, so maybe that’s an element of what we are observing. Ask yourself; just who benefits most and least from these kinds of semi-radical Anon or Chanology efforts over time? What purposes are actually served? What are the likely outcomes of these actions and behaviors as this scenario or “us vs. them” mentality and effort unfolds?

    It seems Operation Clambake, and xenu.net, etc., fairly long-term ex-Scientologists and those opposed to the horror that is Scientology (David Miscavige seems like a fairly devious, insidious Svengali or Rasputin type to me), do not support the Anonymous group or Chan, due to their anonymity, questionable tactics, and use of techniques, like the DOS attacks, that are, as one of the commenters here noted, a form of restriction and denial of free speech, even if you disagree with just about everything the Scientologists or mainstream religions teach and stand for, which are primarily negative in history and nature of effects on human culture at this time and long before now. I’d like to see some input on these ideas, if anyone cares to comment. Even if Anon/Chan are not any kind of “false flag” op, their effort and the consequences may just serve that purpose and have that effect anyway.

    Just my 2.13 cents worth of speculation, FWIW. Opinions on these thoughts?

    [Oh, and I agree with the less than literate gentleman ‘tax scientology’ that Scientology, indeed, should definitely pay their taxes, just like any other profit-making corporation, which is really what they are, as another commenter here noted, they require their “parishioners” (clients? consumers? victims?) to really pay to play their truly absurdist and sick space alien games, as good old L. Ron Hubbard structured the “religion” for pecuniary purposes and as a form of exploitative mind control and crass, power-hungry personal manipulation. IMHO.]

    I’m really glad the Thetan OT VIII, etc. ‘secret truths’ are out on the net, just so that vulnerable noobs can check that crap out, and if they have any sense at all, stay very far away from the persuasive propagandists of these “new-age” belief systems of exploitation, just as they should research the origins and history of any “mainstream” religious or spiritual false belief system created by man.

    Personally? I’m an agnostic, as even atheism is a basic form of UN/belief in a way, also, when you think about it. An anti-thesis, in a way. As just another human in the world, dealing with the samsara or detritus of the world and existence, and how and why to be a good person, without being hide-bound by some external, hierarchal belief system or “godhead” patriarchal or matriarchal concept that requires my emotional and intellectual submission to some mythical higher power, or that there is or is not any possibility of any non-human basis or “gods” or other “conscious” source as to the origin and nature of the complex multiverse.

    I realized long ago that if you cannot prove a contention one way or another, and be able to establish by evidence some real, testable form of proof, truly, then agnosticism in general, while still seeking truth, whatever that is, or the experiential nature of reality, is my way and course of being and understanding, as it is beyond my personal capacity and means to resolve, and so I don’t think any camp (belief) followers [god, gods, no god(s), aliens, or even just the nature of reality in the deepest sense of being able to define the actual origins, nature, or basis of reality causation] have the “real” answers, or that the philosophical and logical conundrum is known or possibly knowable, so I choose life, alone, without attribution or allegiance to any belief system of any kind, based on “deus ex machina” or conscious or directed mechanisms, nor do I reject such out of hand.

    I simply _do not know_, and although I doubt religion, in general, provides any current or valid explanations, as it is primarily a human invention for social and cultural purposes or for getting through life on some level and to be able to “do the right thing,” that’s the best I’ve come up with so far.

    I think early man, not knowing what the answers to these questions were either, and being even less able to rationally explore them, created answers in order to fulfill a need for some way of interpreting and relating to the “randomness” of the existential, harsh realities we faced, and still do, of being conscious, imaginative, intelligent beings.

    And so, as Nietzsche once said, man invented God(s) and religion, mainly for survival and sanity purposes. If one cannot relate to the unknown, many find that even an invented or synthesized faith-based “theorem” is better than either nothing or trying to rationally deal with the unknown or unknowable without some firm beliefs as to our origins, nature, and place.

    “Religion” may have been a natural evolutionary development as a form of group survival mechanism, and so to deny the power and purposes, even if in a sense untrue or created, is to deny the obvious, still existent need by most for same.

    Belief, faith, and religion have and do serve many purposes for most in differing, personal ways. Even knowing, in effect, that we don’t know, and striving for understanding or knowledge, is sort of a faith-based or “needful thing” in even atheistic or agnostic minds, as wanting and needing to know what’s real, or not, is an aspect of what it means to be human, and to possess our kind of intellectual and consciousness drives.

    We want and have a need to be knowing, seeking, and questing for whatever truth there is out there and in us to help make things more acceptable and less unknowable or purely random. That, in one sense, is what it means to be human and alive in the universe. We have a need to know; our efforts relate to “declassifying” or trying to reveal and unveil the mysterious, the unknown, and to refute, confirm, or really seek and need to investigate further the “supernatural” (which to me means the unidentified or unexplained only) in order to know and understand and use that knowledge to further ourselves individually and as a collective species with great potential and ambitions.

    And to realize that potential, as best we can, and again for survival, continuity, and to evolve to higher levels in order not just to survive, but to succeed in realizing that potential and the possibility, as we hopefully can do so, to become truly and more than human.

    I guess that means a form of transhumanist agenda and manifesto is what I’m expressing, while saying that belief and faith are fine, but not at the expense of reality, truth, growing personally and exploring what is, and what may be “out there” and inside of us, from the point of view of a kind of evolutionary enlightenment and necessary change without the old blinders of self-fulfilling beliefs or religious faiths that may hinder that purpose or limit what we can see, do, and know.

    I choose science, a kind of Heisenberg uncertainty principle, rationality, and ambiguity in lieu of fact, proof, or testable, empirical evidence. I am kind of a “reality hacker,” I guess. But, again, that’s just my take on the matter; I could very well be wrong, misguided, or misperceiving the issues, and admit that possibility, also. Not knowing, and agnostic can do no less, or more.

    As J.B.S. Haldane once said, to paraphrase, the universe is not only stranger than we know, it’s stranger than we _can_ know, at least at this point in spacetime, with our primate heritage, and current level of evolution, consciousness, and relative levels of intelligence. The question at the heart of this debate does not have an answer that is acceptable to at least me. Not by any means and certainly not as yet.

    Whosoever claims to know the “truth” of these matters has not as yet convinced me, at least, that they really know what they’re talking about. In a sense, I ask myself, how possibly could they?

    And that’s not an easy place to reside within, or without, but I can live with the ambiguousness of that quite well, thank you.

    What say you all?

  20. LOL. Anonymous is not the personal army of some religious group. As for Anon not being “organized”, that is true. We have no leaders. However we are quite confident we can do serious damage to this illicit cult. We Are
    Anonymous. We Are Legion. We Do Not Forgive. We Do Not Forget. Expect Us.

  21. This article, Peter, could just as easily been titled, “In Defense of Strieberology”, considering Whitley’s last (allegedly mistakenly posted, and then removed, although still cached) journal entry.

    Here’s why: (see first: http://tinyurl.com/yts28n)

    “One essential point being overlooked: his story about a mobile ear implant. Why do I suspect he would not allow an examination of same by medical experts, employing current medical tech such as PET, CAT, and fMRI scanners? Because Strieber is lying or deluded, or both.

    He has now, and for some time since his fiction days (which, imho, continue) been verging in L. Ron Hubbard territory, i.e., fiction as if it were fact merely because the author, Strieber in this case, says so.

    He’s trying to pull a Veidt, ala the “Watchmen” scenario. I ask, who will watch (and really vet) this particular watchman? The truth will set him free, but it may not result in continuing profit. Strieber, regardless of the skill and strangely wonderful content of his online journal posts and books, etc., is committing a fraud, whether you or he or anyone else cares or not.

    This can be easily proven. Need I mention this mythical alien or whatever ear (and most eeriely silly) implant, again, folks?

    Critical thinking, honest skepticism, and empirical, deductive logic requires it. Don’t get fooled, again! There will be no Veidt confabulations or fakery allowed, at least on _my_ watch, damn it!

    The watchmen are now here, and on the job. Veidt/Strieber will not win this battle for hearts and minds. Nor should be, based on just the facts, ma’am. Feh on him.

    To be continued…”

    The same applies to L. Ron Hubbard and the absurdist Scientology cult, IMHO.

  22. anonymous said: “The only way to kill Big Religion seems to be letting it rot from inside.”

    except that’s not killing it. it lurches on. there appears to be no limit to what people can and will rationalize (er, faith) away.

  23. I am in a drugged stupor tx to my friend the doctor. He will call his friends the Police if I don’t show up for an appointment. At least Scientology offers me books to read with real solutions to help overcome these and other problems.

  24. I will go so far as to agree that the books Scientology provides to you are, at least in terms of basic premise, no more ludicrous than the sacred texts of any other religion. Whether that means the solutions therein are “real” — dude, I am deeply skeptical.

    South Park did a documentary on Scientology you may find useful, though…