Claim: Scientology is a scam that masquerades as a religion
Scientology has nothing to do with
religion, claim critics. It is a commercial enterprise, a
criminal organization, and a devious scam whose sole aim is
money and power. Scientology, they say, uses the
religious label to gain tax exemptions and find shelter for
their criminal activities under the umbrella of "Religious
The "Church" and
"Religion" angle is actually somewhat embarrassing for
many Scientologists who prefer to view what they do as a
practical philosophy. It seems quite clear to me that at least
part of the reasons for the movement to present itself as a
religious organization is of a legal nature, and I think that
many members are aware of that.
While I still view Scientology as a
religion, as per the reasons below, I do not agree with the fact
that the huge chunk of money they are making escapes taxation.
The solution would of course be to tax every religious
organizations like any commercial organization. I personally do
not see good reasons for religious organizations to be
tax-exempt in the first place.
The main reason why critics'
accusations don't hold water is that Scientology *does* have
spiritual tenets as part of his philosophy and that members at
various levels *do* believe in them. Scientologists actively
belief, as part of their core belief in Scientology, that they
are spiritual beings, distinct from their "meat body",
and that their own brand of psychological therapy have a direct
incident in their spiritual evolution and future. In my view,
this alone qualifies the movement to benefit of the religion
label, and many courts and scholars around the world have also
I am personally convinced that the
CoS leaders believe in their own tenets just as much, if not
more, as the rank and file members. I don't support, therefore,
the argument that there is a conscious scam being run by evil
exploiters against unsuspecting and innocent victims. If
anything, both leaders and members share in the same illusion.
Two reasons why anticultists like
to dismiss Scientology as a genuine religious movement are:
1) they do not want to be seen as
attacking a genuine religious movement.
2) they need to justify the
mind-control paradigm that makes a simplistic duality between
the evil exploiter on the one hand, and the unsuspecting and
innocent victim on the other. A religious movement where
everyone, from top to bottom, sincerely believes in what they
do runs counter to this paradigm.
Scientology is no less a religious
movement than any other belief system centered upon spiritual
tenets. It doesn't mean, for that, that it is beyond criticism,
and while I don't believe it is a deliberate scam, I do think
that it is way over-priced as a therapy, and that money should
not enter the picture at all when it comes to spirituality.
While I do respect Scientologists' choice and their genuine
efforts to improve themselves and society, the unreasonable toil
Scientology put on its members, money-wise and cultic-wise, is
way to high for what is worth. In my opinion. In this sense,
even though critics go themselves way over the top, it is not
completely unwarranted to say that Scientology is a scam. That
is can also be considered as a religion is not a contradiction
under this light.
Random Quote :
This web site is
NOT created by a Scientologist. It is created by a Scientology EX-MEMBER
who is critical of Scientology. However, this ex-member is ALSO critical
of the anti-Scientology movement. This does not make him a
Scientologist, nor a defender of Scientology.