|RonsAmigo||Claire Swazey||Wonderflur||Whippersnapper||Others||How Scientologists are portrayed in a.r.s.|
Wonderflur, or Russell Shaw, posts in a.r.s. for years. He is an humorous and smart individual, and is even recognized as such by some critics.
In the following post, Wonderflur discusses with Michael Reuss. Michael Reuss is a critic whose style is courteous and intellectual, but whose "philosophy" is in reality a crude anticultism made of simplistic dualities. While critics are "rational", "cult leaders" are "deluded megalomaniac" and "cultists" are "conditioned" through an insidious "brainwashing" process that influences them against their knowledge and drives them to hurt and even kill others and themselves. Russ Shaw is addressing here some of Michael Reuss' fixed ideas about Scientology and Scientologists.
From: "Russell Shaw" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Scienos - Please post to ARS - it is your right
Date: Mon, 23 Nov 1998 22:30:41 -0700
>>>Applying logic is at the heart of being a critic.
>>It is quite probably at the heart of thinking itself. But, that doesn't
>>make it so for most who oppose Scientology.
>We disagree on your second point.
Yes. You tend to see opposing Scientology as "rational" so everyone doing
that is behaving according to *your idea* of being logical. But that
conclusion is based on the idea that it is "bad", and therefore opposing it
I've seen no shortage here of irrational statements or concepts from the
critics. And I've seen nothing to indicate that this group is somehow a
bunch of superior thinkers either. Some seem to have a pretty good sense of
humor and some are pretty logical in most of their posts as well. But as a
whole, nothing any more impressive than I would expect to find at any
university in the philosophy department.
>>Yes. And it is the misemotion that clouds and colors so much of what is
>I don't think there is such a thing as mis-emotion. There is only
Well then, think of it as the more irrational emotions. Shouldn't have to
look too far to see some good examples.
>As for which group, fervent Scientologists or critics of the Co$, is
>worse at allowing irrationality to guide a greater portion of their
>thinking and debating, my observations show it is your group, trained to
>attack enemies without ever considering the merits of the criticisms
Are you suggesting that the critics are not guilty of EXACTLY THAT SAME
THING you are accusing my group of?
There are *many* here who will attack on a mad dog basis anything coming
from a Scientologist. Is there some set of circumstances where *that* is
>themselves, which are far worse. You yourself do this. What was that
>great quote from you that shows you are one of the trained and
>uncritical and irrational defenders? Didn't you say something to the
>effect that "The idea that one can criticize Scientology and go
>unpunished is wrong?" I probably don't have the quote exactly correct,
>but the idea is there.
The idea was NOT criticize and be punished. It was that one can not
**attack** and have NO PENALTY.
I see a difference there. Anyone can criticize me. Live it up. Attack me,
and there *will* be a penalty. You can find my original statement in Jeff
Jacobsen's sig - it is in all of his posts. (Jeff has always seemed to be
impressed with my work - it is quite flattering)
>On the other hand, if you are willing to actually listen to our
>criticisms, respect our opinions, take corrective actions within your
>group, and forego the idea the critics of Scientology are suppressives
>and criminals that may be destroyed without fear of reprisals from
>within your group, then please, please, say so. Be unequivocal.
I am willing to listen to any legitimate grievance. From just about anyone.
I respect opinions that are the opinions of THAT person. I have very little
respect for opinions that were *formed by someone else* and are just being
repeated. For those, I don't need to listen to the person giving the
commuication - I can get the original from the same place they got it.
I do not feel that all critics are suppressives or criminals. I do not feel
that all critics should be "destroyed" - with or with reprisals.
Some critics are suppressive. They will destroy themselves. They won't
need any help from me.
Is that unequivocal enough?
> Then we
>could get to discussing the things and procedures that would make
>Scientology more palatable, not only to the critics, but also to
>non-Scientology parents and family members, as well as to the public at
Making Scientology palatable to those who want to destroy it does not seem a
very real goal to me.
>>>How many of us are criminals, Russ?
>>I do not have sufficient data to do an exact count, so can not really
answer the question.
>Are you saying that opposing Scientology does not automatically make us
>criminals and suppressives?
Yes. I am saying that.
But it does make some of the more dedicated opposers seem a bit daft - just
spending that much time and energy "working" on something that is going to
change almost nothing.
>If you are saying that, or do believe that,
>do you have any idea about how representative your opinion is amongst
Depends on the Scientologist. Really.
> Do you wish to influence your groups leaders on
>this subject, because they clearly and totally and unequivocally
>disagree with that idea.
I don't think my group's leaders need my help in evaluating this scene. The
actual leaders have far more information available to them than I do - and
would be in a *much* better position to make good decisions than I would.
And even in those cases where my *hindsight* is perfect - where I can see
what was done was NOT optimum - I have *no* reason to believe that they can
not see that as well.
>>> Do you care to use that label on
>>>critics of Scientology? If not, I'm sure you will be shown the light,
>>>and be told to stop squirreling when you get to AOLA.
>>It is exactly this type of stupid tripe that makes most everything you say
>>seem at the least, a bit "off". You seem capable of making a valid point,
>>then are compelled to stick that kind of crap into your arguement.
>My point is not that you cannot think for yourself, but that your will
>and your intentions on this matter have been manipulated.
This is not even a logical assumption on your part. You *assume* that
someone MADE me think a certain way. It would be just as logical for me to
assert that YOU have been manipulated. But there is no basis for making
such an assertion.
>trained to be a blindly loyal, uncritical defender of your group, and
>they will likely try to reinforce this conditioning and indoctrination,
>the more training you take.
I am neither blindly loyal nor uncritical. I am *very* loyal - but that is
not the same thing as blind.
I do not criticize my group here - no matter what. I don't criticize my
wife or close friends to the broad public either. It is beyond poor form.
It is plain stupid.
To suggest that it is indoctrination implies that I would not choose to
believe as I do - and that someone MAKES me think a certain way.
>These indoctrination processes do exist, and
>are used by your group. That is my point.
I suppose almost *any* group has indoctrination processes. Most crap like
that is not very effective on me. At least not for long.
>>No one is going to "show me the light". And I am not squirreling. The fact
>>that you quite obviously think otherwise only shows me that you do NOT have
>>a real understanding of Scientology. Or me.
>I use the term squirrelling only to point out to you that you appear
>real close to diverging from your group leadership's clearly stated
>beliefs. If you're admitting to yourself that we critics are not
The phrase "we critics" bands certain people together - and I am *not*
saying NONE are criminals or nuts. In fact, there are some who seem stark
But the term "critics" (at least to me) covers a VERY broad range of
humanity. Lots of shades of grey (among other colors) - not all black and
>I simply want to impress upon you that your
>opinions fly in the face of official, written, Hubbardspew Brand [tm]
>technology, and I suspect your group will try to dislodge this notion
>from your mind. I'm certain to be quite happy if they fail.
I don't even know HOW someone would go about "dislodging" an idea from my
mind. As I am the one who "okays" all the final thoughts there.
>>Again, the URL is: http://www.dancris.com/~rshaw
I left this in again - for anyone who didn't have the address.
>>The primary purpose of all "protests" is to irritate people who aren't
>>participating in the protest.
>Irritate, maybe, but not just to irritate. Irritation in and of itself
>does no good for a protester. Getting you to think and to change is the
Then it is one destined to totally fail. No protester - in front of an
org - is going to get me to "think", except of them as someone who doesn't
get very much for their time. (this includes retired investment bankers -
who, when their time was actually *worth something* would NOT be doing
>>>Ah yes, copyright terrorists, lynch mobs, it's all the same to you,
>Your web page is what makes the claim. Don't blame me for inferring what
>you clearly mean to imply. If you don't like what your web page says,
>take it down. Apologize for hosting it.
The page isn't coming down. I am not going to apologize. When the pages
that attempt to smear my church are down, my page will come down.
>>Anyone who backed or believed *any* of the Dorian crap is an idiot, as an
>>example. These are *some* of the same people who want to tell me how to
>I want to tell you how to think, too. But only to the extent that I
>want you to stop thinking that it's okay to try and hurt people who
>disagree with your cult's anti-social and deceptive behaviors.
Am I "hurting" you? How? What is the church doing to *any* critic, that
isn't being done BY that critic?
>>Why isn't it okay with you for me to draw my own conclusions about Ron
>My conclusions about LRH are rational.
Michael, one tends to believe that *their* views are rational all the time.
As soon as a being SEES that his view isnt' rational, he tends to change it.
Your views about LRH do not seem to *me* to be "rational". He "left" in
1986. Yet I see crap here all the time about how he "did it for the money".
As Ron Hubbard could not be getting any of the money - to me it seems a bit
less than rational to for anyone to even bring that up. (I know, I know -
straw man!!! - as *you* did not, JUST NOW bring it up!)
>His lies, paranoia, and
>delusional fantasies are documented over and over. If you think he was a
I do not think of him as a near god. He was a man. He wrote a LOT of
books. I like and use a great deal of the information that he wrote. So do
others. Therefore, Scientology is all over the world. I know this is
simplistic, but I really don't see it as much more compliated than that.
> or if you think he found the Only True path to human
>happiness, I think you are demonstrably incorrect.
Happiness is the *process* of achieving one's goals. It happens every day.
In and out of Scientology.
>Further, I think your
>group's beliefs have led to dangerous and hostile and anti-social group
>politics, which have effected me and other people with whom I feel
>empathy. I feel a certain empathy with you, too, but this is tempered by
>your blind insistence that the cult of Scientology does no wrong
I don't think there is *any* group or person who "does no wrong". And I
don't soon expect to see such a person or group.
>does not deserve our criticisms.
Deserved or not, they don't seem likely to stop anytime soon - so it doesn't
matter what I think on that point.
>>It is okay with me for you to decide whatever you want.
>Exactly as it should be, for I don't belong to a group which seeks to
>irrationally labels people as enemies and subsequently harasses,
>embarrasses and even sometimes tries to destroy them.
There we disagree totally. You belong to precisely such a group. Only you
feel totally justified in your actions. Because you are "right".
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