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Nancy Many’s Life in Scientology Dramatized on January 16 Investigation Discovery Series


Discovery Channel’s true-crime sister network, Investigation Discovery, is airing a 1-hour dramatization of Nancy Many’s amazing life in Scientology next week, at 10 pm on Wednesday, January 16.

Many has been very effective at keeping this a secret, but recently she let us in on it and now that she’s seen the final edit, she’s very happy with how the production turned out.

“Out of the blue I got a request last spring from two separate production companies wanting to put my book in a docudrama format,” Many says, referring to her harrowing account of surviving Scientology’s notorious “Rehabilitation Project Force” and many other experiences in My Billion-Year Contract. She chose a British production company whose executives had some previous experience working on Scientology stories.

“This past summer they came to the US and interviewed me and several other people, including Paulette Cooper,” she says. “They asked me about my experiences with the manipulative mind control environment of Scientology.”

For part of her career in the church, Nancy was a Boston-area volunteer who helped the church carry out covert operations. In one of her assignments, she was asked to tail Cooper, who had written a book about Scientology in 1971 and was considered the church’s biggest enemy at the time.

“I was briefed as to when she was coming into Boston, and exactly which clothes she’d be wearing the next day,” she says, and she admits it puzzled her how her handlers knew what Cooper would be wearing in the future — later, she learned that Scientology was being fed information by Cooper’s roommate, an operative who called himself Jerry Levin.

“I followed her around, but they knew she was coming to Boston to meet with her attorney, F. Lee Bailey, and I never understood why that exercise was done. Because they knew when she was coming, what she was wearing, where she was going. It has never made sense to me why she needed to be followed when she was doing something they already knew she was doing.”

In Many’s book, one of the most disturbing episodes describes her time as a prisoner in the RPF, five months pregnant, forced to live in a parking garage in Clearwater, Florida. Later, she was running the Celebrity Centre in Los Angeles when she and her husband made a break for freedom after they were threatened with further RPF stints — then had to go back for their 2-year-old son.

All of it is covered in the Investigation Discovery docudrama, which is part of a new series called “Dangerous Persuasions.”

“They act it out. It’s a dramatized documentary,” she says. With voiceover provided by Many herself.

“Scientology: My Eternal Contract” is the title for the episode.

The theme of the series is stories of “good people who are made to do bad things,” she says. “Scientology indoctrinates people so they do things they would normally never do.”


Programming Note

A death in the family is going to keep us off the blog for the next couple of days. Please bear with us.


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 8, 2013 at 01:00


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  • DodoTheLaser

    Nancy Many – “Scientology indoctrinates people so they do things they would normally never do.” – So true.

    Tony – “A death in the family is going to keep us off the blog for the next couple of days. Please bear with us.”
    So sorry to hear that, take your time, Tony.

    • Captain Howdy

      Sorry for your loss.Remember to bring a flask.Trust me, it’s crucial for these things.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Yeah… What Capt. said.

      • The Dakini

        I second CH’s thoughts. Best thoughts your way Tony!

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Assume that was the emergency then. So very sorry for your loss, Tony. Just went through that myself at Christmas. And yes, the cats will keep us updated while you’re away. Oh, you didn’t know?

  • Marc


  • disqus_0ZZYxW6Ksx

    So sorry to hear of your loss, Tony. Had 6 funerals too many in 2012 myself, so I feel for your pain. Chin up.

  • HeatherGraceful

    This post is magnificent news, the only down side being the fact of your family bereavement, Tony. You’re in my thoughts.
    Nancy and Paulette – va va voom, ladies.

  • Wow, Tony! You are truly ‘OT’. It says above that this story was posted by you on July 8th 2013 at 01:00. How’d ya manage that? Truly amazing. All kidding aside, I’ll definitely be watching. Thanks for letting me know.

  • jensting

    “Discovery Channel’s true-crime sister network, Investigation Discovery, ” That just made the article, there and then. True Crime. Yes indeed.

    So sorry to hear the Real World is intruding in that way, Tony. Best wishes to you and to your family.

  • DodoTheLaser

    Come Tenderness by Lisa Gerrard

    Sending love and peace to dead and alive.

  • califa007

    That 10PM is EST. I just checked my TV listings and if I had the channel, it would be 7PM PST, so YMMV. Now to call my cable company and see if I can trade the 15 football channels, 20 basketball channels and 10 soccor channels for the ID channel. Bummer. Maybe I can catch it on Hulu.

    • I wouldn’t be surprised if it popped up on one of the torrent sites or Youtube thanks to an Anon.

      • califa007

        You’re right – thanks. I feel better!

    • Deckard__Cain

      Check back on Tony’s blog after it airs and ask if anyone recorded it. I bet someone will have captured it and posted it somewhere. Or check on WWP after it airs. Chances are good you’ll find it somewhere.

    • N. Graham

      They repeat a lot of their programming on their website, without commercials.

  • Phew…. and it’s still the first week of January…. betcha Tinyfists is having to resort to adult diapers as even the most seasoned ‘guilty ringpiece’ couldn’t handle the constant puckering of ehtheta bombardment going on right now….

    • Midwest Mom

      Extra strength Toddler size diapers would probably suffice, don’t you think?

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      One day before Lawrence Wright’s book comes out. I’m not getting any sleep this month, am I? I am so very excited and appreciative of this production company slotting this in the correct slot, correct themes. Nancy is such a sweetheart of a lady and one of those born champs.

      I’m thinking DM’s gonna need Pepto Bismol chasers with his scotch…ewww. Maybe he’ll finally get the hint to take an early retirement now.

    • jensting

      Well, at least someone in the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology has assured John Sweeney that David Miscavige is not insane.

      At this point, I fall back to quoting my Amazon review: “The style and content of the denials are completely over the top; the
      effect is such a degree of loss of credibility that there is a danger
      that one puts down this book and is ready to believe anything that the
      organisation denies”

    • SP ‘Onage

      Yes, and a whiskey soaked baby pacifier to sooth his butt hurt.

  • Glad to hear about Nancy Many and Dangerous Persuasions but very sorry to hear of your loss Tony.

  • califa007

    Sorry to hear of your loss, Tony. My best wishes to you and your family.

  • Sid Snakey

    I have read Nancy’s book and I’m sure it will convert into a great TV docu-drama.

    Such things as these are epic win-win. It’s a win for those outside who need information about what may happen to them if they were to join, and it’s a win for those inside who see it and might just start looking for the truth. Fingers crossed for good viewing figures, and PLENTY of re-runs!

    We then wait for the stories of people who emerge a few years from now and say “I happened to watch the Nancy Many documentary and it really got me thinking…..”.

    Sorry to hear of your loss Tony – best wishes to your family.

  • 0tessa

    So sorry to learn about your loss. Of course we’ll bear with you.
    What struck me: Scientology makes good people do bad things. It degrades people. It does exactly the opposite of what they promote so arduously. Like any real dictator does for that matter.

  • This is going to be an amazing TV show. I have been thrilled about it coming out since it was filmed last July and Nancy told me about it when we roomed together at an “SP Party”. Nancy is a truly wonderful person. She is currently dedicating her life to the help of others as a chaplin and I personally know of many efforts of her for many years to help others including being part of an “underground railroad” for those escaping scientology.
    This story will touch your hearts. Nancy, like many others, thought she was helping the world by being part of organized scientology so many years ago only be be betrayed by what would end up to be fraud, great greed and abuse.
    The world is a better place because of Nancy.
    I am so very proud of her for all her courage and desire to help others.
    I love her.
    And. Tony. I am sorry to hear of your loss:(

    • I will never get that picture of a preganant Nancy sleeping in that damn parking garage and being made to feel like a total degraded being. And then the baby had so many respiratory problems after it was born. It’s shit like this that we will never forgive and never forget.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      So that’s what you two were giggling about! You and Nancy both are true champions in my book.

    • Lurkness

      Excellent panel discussion on cults and thought suppression/mind control with Nancy Many.

      • Bill Maloney

        The American family can be called a cult..many cults out there doing great’s the evil cults that need to be uprooted. The leaders that like David micavage or whatever his name is. Needs to pay a heavy price four the evil shit he’s done. And it’s coming.

  • Fascinating to see how the truth is pouring out. It seems like we’re approaching the tipping point. But let’s keep in mind that the battle is far from over.

    Sorry about your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • Amazing. I can’t wait to see this.
    The fact that Discovery is taking on Scientology is pretty amazing, a sign of how weak Scientology is and that people are starting to dare to take them on.

    • Brainslugged

      It reminds me of those nature videos you see once in a while where a tiger is running around scaring the crap out of a herd of bison, threatening to eat them. Then something in the herd clicks and they all turn on the big pussy (cat) and trample it. Strength in numbers.

      My condolences to Tony. And a very belated “thanks for a great 2012”. I’d settled into lurker mode with all the changes to site location and comment systems.

      • SP ‘Onage

        Good to see you back! I was wondering where you and sharkattacksteve were? You guys were gut busters! 🙂

        • Brainslugged

          I ended up slipping into the shadows to lurk for a while with all the transitions between websites and comment systems. I’m glad Disqus is back as I missed the to-and-fro nature of the conversations enjoyed at the Village Voice.

    • jensting

      While Discovery has apparently been working on this for a long time, I would say that with the capitulation in the Debbie Cook case and in the case brought by the PIs in Texas, the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology has shown itself to be, at best, a shadow of its former litigious self…

      While no-one should underestimate the cornered rat syndrome and its effect on David “he is NOT insane!” Miscavige, the threat to people who expose the Co$ is much less severe than in the grim days of the lawsuits against Time magazine and Dennis Ehrlich.

      • ze moo

        The CO$ had a major change of tactics during the ‘aughts’. In the past anyone doing any story on the CO$ was automatically an ‘sp’ and fair gamed as such. Paulette Cooper and the Tampa Bay reporters had to contend with false police reports and all kinds of harassment.

        Private investigators would follow Sweeney around try to intimidate him, but 2 sets of cameras recording each other aren’t very intimidating. What journalist is being followed by PI’s right now?
        Who is getting the black pr at this moment? Rathbun had the Squirrel busters, but they were not intimidating at all, if fact, I found their antics much like Monty Python’s ‘No one expects the Spanish

        What changed during the aughts? Why doesn’t the CO$ try to strike fear into the hearts of the opposition any more? Is there no one willing to do the dirty work for CO$ anymore? Are the puppies and kitties safe now?

        With all the CO$ exposes coming out this year, they do seem to have lost their old touch. Karin Prouw doesn’t show up and badger Tony Ortega, but Tommy Davis would have, if he were still around. With all the smart phones and camera around these days, anyone trying to intimidate anyone is going find a recording of their efforts on youtube or in the local district attorneys office. Maybe that is the CO$ Achilles heal, the truth shown every where.

        • TheHoleDoesNotExist

          I wondered if the news about the FBI and then Homeland Security investigating that some private eyes might be considering what it might actually cost them to take blood money from the cult.

          • Ze Moo

            Private Investigators seldom have any concerns beyond the legality and payout for their services. News of FBI and Homeland Security investigations may be limiting Co$ black operations, but previous investigations never slowed them down. Maybe Jensting is right, Miscavige can only micromanage so many black ops, otherwise it cuts down on his boozing time.

            The question remains, who is the current victim of CO$ black ops?? Marty Rathbun had the camera guys down the road watching him, but that is not very intimidating. Who is contending with false police reports, burglary and all of the usual CO$ crimes? I don’t think there are enough loyal minions to run such operations any more. Or maybe Miscavige doesn’t trust anyone to do them at the moment. The ‘always attack, never defend’ religion has been very quiet lately.

            • TheNextMrsTomCruise

              True, the Sciloons have been extremely lax in their black pr department lately. I, but Babbles Schwartz is still at it, tooth and nail. Thank God for Babbles, or I’d have nothing to guffaw at!

        • BuryTheNuts2

          Did you just say “The Tech” has been ambushed and will eventually be defeated by Technology?

          David should have kept Tommy Davis around longer. At least he looked pretty on camera.
          In a “smarmy” way of course.

        • jensting

          I think it’s more the case hat they’re snowed under. I know one person in France who was sued, criminally, for libel for saying that the organisation was criminal (duh!) at a protest.

          So, perhaps it’s more the volume that the criminal organisation is unable to cope with than its the organisation losing its appetite for being nasty? It could simply be that David “he is NOT insane!” Miscavige micromanages all legal responses and therefore does not have the time to be nasty to more than a select few.

    • I think it says something that Discovery is putting this in it’s true crime arena. Hopefully the major networks will take note and start airing some of those stories they shelved under pressure from Scientology.

  • LongNeckGoose

    Sorry for your loss. I may head down to the bookstore today to get John Sweeney’s book, to keep me busy until you get back.

    • LongNeckGoose

      Or not. Barnes & Noble’s website doesn’t show it.

    • California


  • Unex Skcus

    Condolences from Australia, Tony, and my best wishes.

  • Tony, I am very sorry to hear of the death in your family;(

    • Midwest Mom

      Sending prayers and hugs to you and your family, Tony.

  • JustCallMeMary

    So proud of Nancy. Always helping others, especially behind the scenes.

    Her story will resonate with viewers. It’s one of the most
    demonstrative of how bad Scientology really can get.

    Thanks, always, to Nancy Many for helping expose this dangerous organization.


  • JustCallMeMary

    Thanks for the note update,Tony. Condolences to you and your loved ones on your loss.

  • Observer

    I’d love to be a fly on the wall in Davey’s office when he hears this news. The entheta just keeps coming, and there’s nothing he can do about it. He must be boiling over with impotent rage. You’d better run, Lou!

    I’m really glad the Old Guard get to witness this, to see their long struggle pay off.

    And I am so sorry for your loss, Tony.

    • Deckard__Cain

      I only got one PR fluff piece alert today. Only one. And we are quickly approaching STATurday……hee hee hee.

  • 1subgenius


  • YAY Nancy Many!!!


    Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow!


    Man, man, man, man, man!

    (Sorry. I was up late last night reading John Sweeney’s book. I couldn’t put it down. It was hilarious. I kept looking up at the clock and seeing it get later and later. And now, this morning, this is the extent of my intellectual powa. I have a feeling I will be like this a lot this month!)


    • Midwest Mom

      Alanzo, have you checked out John Sweeney’s tweets, lately? I was laughing out loud when I saw this tweet in particular from yesterday:

      “Post on @TonyOrtega94’s blog re book on Scientology: ‘Mr. Sweeney, you are International Sex Symbol, Literati Hottie’ I am very afraid.” “[sic]”

      • Deckard__Cain

        Sweeney rocks. I didn’t realize he had a Twitter account and I love that he uses that thumbnail pic of him yelling at Tommy Davis. He has such a great sense of humor, I love it.

        • aquaclara

          Sweeney shows courage and humor amidst fear. Nancy, too. These stories are tremendous.
          BTW, Sweeney’s twitter page description reads “Reporter. I poke crocodiles, if crocodiles they be, in the eye with a stick.” Love this. He has something in common with Tony O….

      • That is funny!

        His book really has the right balance of searing satirical humor, while also presenting the serious threats Scientology poses, and the harm they have done. His story about Shawn Lonsdale was really very impactful.

        Tommy Davis was probably hoping that his time as Church spokesman would just disappear into the past. It’s really not looking like that’s gonna happen now with JS’s book.

        A Note To Tommy Davis: You owe your society and the people Scientology has harmed an amends, Tommy. Do something to help law enforcement, get yourself interviewed on TV and expose the crimes of Scientology. Don’t just sit there and let this keep going on.



        • Amen, Alanzo. Tommy Davis has a large debt to pay to people he personally harmed and to the public he lied to for ages. I wonder if he’ll wake up enough to attempt to do something, even if he is tied by a NDA.

          • Who cares about an NDA or some other legal problem he might personally suffer by doing what he owes to society from being the Chief Lying PieHole for a totalitarian cult?

            I say “Deliver an effective blow to the enemies of the group one has been pretending to be part of despite personal danger.”

            That’s what I say.


        • cultwife

          Alanzo, thank you for the link to Shawn Lonsdale’s story. Awful, unspeakable to drive a decent human being to that. How did Church officials react when they heard? I can’t imagine it … I have high blood pressure as it is.

          Last but certainly not least, condolences to Tony from a very new poster in this group,

          • Oh, I got lots of links, CW. I’ve been doing this for a while.

            So if you have any questions, or areas of interest, I can direct you to the exact shelf in the huge, global Internet Library on Scientology.


        • The Dakini

          Thank you for sharing Shawn’s story Alanzo. Even after two years of scouring for stories of SoC on the web, BAM! There is always another one right around the corner. What is so amazing is the interconnectiviness of players in this tragic story.

          I for one would love to tap into your database of narrative. It’s people’s experiences that keep us grounded in this rodeo. May we never forget them, lest we lose our souls.

          • Vistaril

            Welcome to the world of Scientology where there are only two absolutes: it is never as it first appears and it is always worse than you think.

      • Midwest Mom
        • He is pulling no punches! He is on a TEAR!!!

          He is saying exactly what I would say if I had the chance!

          Go Sweeney GO!!!!


          • Midwest Mom

            Alanzo, John Sweeney tweeted that he thought I was Marc Headley based on my Amazon book review. No offense to Marc, but I thought I was looking pretty cute today. (Sigh…)

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Now who is the literati hottie woman!

            • Midwest Mom

              When Mr. Sweeney tweeted that he was “very afraid” with regard to him being an international sex symbol, he was referring to our comments from the other day. Do you think he is intimidated by our supermodel looks or is it that he can’t handle the truth?

            • SP ‘Onage

              Nice! 😉

          • I’m a little less than half way through Sweeney’s book now. His thesis is “Scientology is a cult and they brainwash people.”

            He is using Robert Jay Lifton’s 8 criteria for a cult and 3 criteria for brainwashing to DEMONSTRATE and PROVE that Scientology is a cult and they brainwash people.

            He also has published the email traffic between Mike Rinder, Tommy Davis and David Miscavige as those three are having him followed while he is filming his BBC Panorama show in 2007. He is comparing what those three are saying to him to his face while denying that they are following. He is showing Tommy Davis and Mike Rinder telling him that the fact that he even thinks he is being followed is proof that Sweeney is insane. He is comparing these statements they are making to him to his face, with their internal emails to each other.

            He says that they are liars – and he proves it.

            He makes the claim that they are a cult – and he proves it.

            He makes the claim that they are brainwashing people – and he proves it.

            I think Sweeney has found himself a crocodile. And he is poking that crocodile straight in the eye with his pointy stick. And he is not going to let up. He is going to blind that crocodile – fully – because crocodiles do not belong in nurseries.

            And totalitarian brainwashing cults do not belong in free societies.

            I can not express the depth of gratitude that I feel for this guy.


            • Midwest Mom

              I can’t wait to read your review after you finish it. I hope you’ll post it on Amazon and on the Silvertail website. 🙂

  • California

    Nancy Many is truly one of the good guys. Honest, kind, smart and funny and she kept her humanity and love for her family throughout her life in SCN and her trials.

    I am looking forward to seeing the docu-drama and it is always fun to talk with Nancy.

  • California

    Tony, blessings on you and your family.

  • SandiCorrena

    So sorry for your loss Tony.

  • InTheNameOfXenu

    My condolences on your loss Tony. Your community of commenters will for sure keep your blog busy in the next few days.

    Boy, am I looking forward to Nancy Many’s story. i read her book a few years ago and it was one of the most heart-breaking ordeals. She was sentenced by Hubbard himself to the RPF while 5 months pregnant. She also suffered a psychotic break from that ‘introspection rundown’ that killed Lisa McPherson. Nancy truly is a remarkable person to have survived this evil.

    • Observer

      “She was sentenced by Hubbard himself to the RPF while 5 months pregnant” and yet the malignant old reprobate still has apologists defending him and his monstrous actions. Unbelievable.

      • Midwest Mom

        It is absolutely appalling that the Co$, or anyone, has the gall to use the term “humanitarian” in any way, shape or form in reference to L. Ron Hubbard. The term “malevolent” is more appropriate

      • InTheNameOfXenu

        I know, tell me about it. Hubbard went even further with his cruelty by sending Nancy to the RPF’s RPF when she was six months pregnant. To this day there are Hubbard apologists that will give him a free pass, because they are ‘tech junkies’ that love Hubbard’s auditing like if it were heroin.

        • Observer

          I don’t get how anyone can believe in anything that comes from a demonstrably sadistic and self-serving scam artist–and not only that, one who both indulged in and fell prey to the very things he claimed to be able to cure: criminality and insanity. That alone should make people suspicious of anything that came bloviating out of his cake hole.

          • TheHoleDoesNotExist

            Cake hole? Tks, adding to list.

          • InTheNameOfXenu

            Scientology is pure bate and switch. Before the internet, it was difficult to obtain facts about this cult. It was a very popular self-help group in it’s day, so it attracted many people searching for answers. Facts like ‘fair-game’, disconnection, ‘Operartion Snow White’, was not readily available pre-internet days. The only method to research Scientology was the public library. The old G.O. would go into libraries and steal books that were critical of the Hubbard and his cult, so that no one would be able to find the truth.

            • Observer

              That’s true, but thankfully those days are ending fast. Anyone who joins now has no excuse.

            • N. Graham

              I think the sheer volume of information on the net is having its eventual effect. The amount of anti-Scio info has multiplied, making it difficult for a Scientologist to find the info they might be looking for without stumbling onto five anti sites. Or just reading and hearing jokes about Scientology, even jokes about the mysterious Xenu (Wall of Fire! Not Ready! Pneumonia!), and the comedy team of Tom, John, and Kirstie.

          • i like you

        • Vistaril

          Did you read in Sweeney’s book how Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder were less concerned about Scientology’s abuses than the fact that while they were perpetuating and covering up said abuses the “church” had not been expanding? Such is their fixated adherence to “the greatest good”.

          • Even out they don’t speak about the abuses. Marty might admit to doing wrong here and there but they certainly don’t like to talk about it unless it involves Miscavige. It’s one of the reasons I have little trust of Marty. There’s always something he twisting to his own uses.

  • You look Fabulous

  • Anononyourside

    Tony, I am so sorry to hear about your loss. My thoughts and best wishes are with you.

    • sugarplumfairy

      Ditto that..

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Plus 1

  • BosonStark

    This is one area Europe has done but has been lacking here in the U.S. so it will be good to see this type of “true crime” telling, and adds to the perfect storm of books coming out.

  • Deckard__Cain

    I hope it isn’t your amazing mother, Tony, but I’m sorry for your loss. I wonder if that means you will be headed out my way in So CA. If so, do bring a warm coat. It gets down into the mid-30s at night and doesn’t warm up until about 11:00 a.m. and only gets to the 60s. That’s cooooold for us.

    I’m looking forward to the Many piece although I am skeptical that her story can really be told in an hour. Her book goes into great detail about her psychotic break and recovery from that. I doubt any television show can really do that story justice.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    I am so excited to see this! Nancy’s story, like that of many exes, will make for dramatic television.

    Tony, my condolences to you and your family. Sending loving thoughts your way…

  • sugarplumfairy

    “good people who are made to do bad things..”

    When I first read Many’s book, I was really upset when I got to the part about her following Paulette Cooper.. I still don’t get how a good person does something they know for absolutely sure is not right.. For instance, the person who put the dead rat in deLiz’s driveway.. How did that person justify that behavior in his or her own conscience?

    In Sweeney’s book, he quotes American military psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton quoting Indian philosopher Radhakrishnan that in some organized religions, “it is not God that is worshipped but the group or the authority that claims to speak in his name. Sin becomes disobedience to authority and not violation of integrity.”

    That explains a lot to me..

    • BuryTheNuts2

      It explains it, but it is still doesn’t justify it.
      I think the key is that people admit what they have done and own it. Then apologize with sincerity…and then forgive themselves.
      Most of the Exes seem to have done this…but not all.
      Shifts my eyes toward Texas….

      • Captain Howdy

        Check out this lengthy 80’s Christian shockudrama “Gods of the New Age” about the influence of eastern mysticism on the West.. Half of it is great footage of the horrors of India and it’s religious insanity and how it was worming it’s way into the West and the latter half is mostly christian whackadoo conspiracy shite. Worth watching up to a point. Especially if you weren’t around for the 60’s, 70’s.

        • Hermesacat

          But most Hindu guru-led movements that established themselves in the west are/were likely fairly innocuous, at least compared to Scientology. I imagine any long-suffering Sea Org member/victim would probably have been far better off following some Indian guru’s sect than following LRH & Miscavige.

          I’ve never heard of any Hindu sects in the West, (e.g. Rajneesh, the Hare Krishna movement, Guru Maharaj-Ji, the Maharishi’s Transcendental Meditation, etc.), being as hard to exit from as Scientology. I’ve not heard of those organizations imposing a disconnection policy on people, or regularly punishing followers via RPF-like detention & internal prison facilities like the Hole. I’ve not heard of physical assault being used as typical means of discipline, as it’s been with Miscavige & crew. Or of Hindu sects endangering lives by discouraging members from seeking medical attention when ill. Or of followers being forced into truly miserable living conditions & slave labour, such as we hear about re. Scientology’s Sea Org.

          Although his followers gave Rajneesh a new Roll Royce every year, as far as I know his & other Hindu based sects didn’t, as a rule, demand members pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to advance spiritually in their movements, & didn’t squeeze each member for every last penny of their life savings as Scientology does. And I never heard of Hindu sects having their own versions of OSA spooks arm, or applying “fair game”-like policies to “destroy” critics as LRH established & practiced, & Miscavige continued.

          As far as I can tell, evidence suggests Scientology’s far more exploitative of & damaging to people than are any of the major sects or cults that came over to the West from India.

          • Captain Howdy

            ” But most Hindu guru-led movements that established themselves in the west are/were likely fairly innocuous” Not here or in their homeland. Scientology, Children of God etc were all heavily inspired bu the indian guru scams.

            • Hermesacat

              That reminds me, I don’t know of any Hindu based sect that taught adults of the sect to have incest with their children as The Children of God cult did. To blame Hinduism for The quasi-Christian Children of God cult’s teachings & practices is jumping the shark, imo, as is blaming Hinduism for LRH’s “church” just because LRH may have stolen a few ideas from Hinduism. He stole lots from varied sources. Btw, Hinduism & yoga have long & some would say admirable traditions dating back thousands of years. Mythologist Joseph Campbell had much respect for much of the Hindu tradition, probably much more so than he had for our own Judeo-Christian tradition. The guru-system, & the yoga taught, have a long & respected traditions in India. Just because some Indian gurus or claimed-gurus may have been less than sincere hardly means they are all insincere shysters. And hey, Indian yoga can, arguably, be shown to be beneficial to both mind & body, even if one chooses to not believe in soul!

            • I think we are coming into a time when the guru tradition is going to die out. So many
              of them are being exposed as very flawed people. There are many reports of Sai
              Baba coercing sex from young men, even at least one child. Also the abuses of
              the Rajneesh community in Oregon. Even Amma, who is generally well thought of,
              is going to be the subject of a tell all by her former long-time assistant
              Gayatri, now Gail Treadwell. Treadwell alleges physical and emotional abuse
              from Amma, as well as lies directly from Amma about the sudden wealth of Amma’s
              family. All this info thanks to the internet (except Rajneesh, that was in a
              The confusing thing about the gurus is this: When they are good, they are good. But
              when they are bad they are also good because they are transmitting a needed
              lesson. Maybe sometimes this is true, but maybe it mostly just enables gurus to
              get away with anything. Gail began to feel that the abuse she endured was
              meanness, not some needed lesson for her.
              So maybe it’s time for a new tradition, that does not involve surrendering
              ourselves body and soul and bank account, to a leader or guru.

            • James Bong

              A guru is a teacher; we will never get to a stage where we don’t need teachers. Teaching skiing or accountancy is one thing, and doesn’t require a close relationship, but with truly difficult matters of the spirit, a close relationship is required. In any teaching relationship there is an imbalance of power, it has to be that way; the teacher teaches and the student learns. Where there is an imbalance of power in a relationship, there is a risk of abuse. This happens in schools, where teachers abuse the power they have and have sex with their students, who may be legally of age but are still too young to be really consenting. Sometimes there is coercion involved. This is shocking behaviour but nobody would suggest that we do away with schools as the children may be abused, only that we try to ensure the teachers are of sufficient stability and maturity not to abuse their position.

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Thank you for clearing up the definition of “guru” and taking it away from the “religious” bent it is normally associated with.

              One could just as easily associate Philosophy, Science and Art with a guru as you can religion.

              Beliefs are beliefs.
              And we all have our own gurus, mentors and muses.

            • James Bong

              2nd reply to yours…I came across this post on facebook, it seemed appropriate.

              Qualities of Leaders: First, never be haughty. Leaders must be modest through and through.

              Second, never reprimand others. You should always treat others gently.
              In the Gosho we find the statement, “He makes it possible for the
              offender to rid himself of evil, and thus he acts like a parent to the
              offender” (MW-2, 2-11) Naturally it will sometimes be necessary for you
              to admonish or encourage others with a spirit of compassion. But you must not scold people in a fit of emotion.

              Third, never raise your voice with fellow members. Leaders should be
              people of reason who seek to win others understand through discussion.

              Fourth, do not lie. Because we are common mortals, we make mistakes.
              There is no reason to feel that we have to cover up errors. The world of
              faith is a world where things can be discussed frankly, without any
              concealment. Honest people will win the trust of those around them.

              Fifth, never betray the privacy of another individual. In the
              organisation, leaders are often called upon to counsel members with
              personal problems. Those who betray this trust and fail to safeguard
              individual privacy demonstrate irresponsibility as leaders, as people of
              faith and as human beings. Leaders must be discreet, sincere people who
              respect the rights of others.

              Sixth, do not look down on
              others. Leaders who have an inflated sense of self-importance, who look
              down on and discriminate against others, will eventually reach an
              impasse in life. All people are equally precious, regardless of their
              position. Excellent leaders are those who have a heartfelt respect for

              Seventh, do not be unfair. All members-whether rich
              or poor, prominent or lacking in social standing-are irreplaceable
              children of the Buddha. I hope all of you will become impartial and just

              Eighth, never overly strain your selves or force
              members to push themselves beyond reasonable limits. You cannot
              maintain such a pace for very long. Pushing your selves too hard is not
              necessarily a reflection of strong faith. Members can fully display
              their abilities only if they are allowed a certain amount of latitude.

              Ninth, do not be arrogant. Arrogance undermines humanity and destroys faith.

              Tenth, do not be unkind. Spiteful leaders make members miserable. On
              the other hand, those who can warmly support their juniors-to the point
              of enabling their juniors to eventually surpass themselves in
              ability-are great leaders.

            • James Bong

              One more recent gem off facebook randomness, “True leaders don’t create followers: they create more leaders.”

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Both of these are very nice posts. Thanks.

            • Captain Howdy

              Thanks Dixie Dwyer !

    • Good people doing bad things. It happens all the time in the military, whose members are indoctrinated to think they are acting for the highest good. Sometimes they are acting for the highest good, but was this the case in Vietnam or Iraq? Anyway my point is not to debate politics, but to show that the mindset of “the greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics” is not just in Scientology or other cults, but in society as a whole.

      Scientology can be seen as a paradigm. Just as Scientologists have to wake up, so do we all (I include myself) have to wake up from the indoctrination that goes on all around us. Media, the education system, and sometimes religion play a big role in this indoctrination. Just becasue something is in the history books, or on the 6 o’clock news, doesn’t mean it’s true.

      My hope is that the internet will play the same role in exposing society, and yes, government indoctrination, as it did in exposing Scientology.

      • Good people doing bad things happens all the time in Divorce cases as well. Especially, when child custody is involved. Talk to family law and criminal lawyers and they’ll tell you that you get good people acting terribly in family law and bad people acting on their best behavior in criminal law court.

      • My father was drafted into Vietnam and served honorably . One of his jobs was to load the bodies of other service men …some of them his friends ..onto choppers to be flown back to their families ~ he was 19. My family members served in WWI and WW2. One person here even had a family member serve in the most decorated paratrooper unit in WW2 and helped liberate people from concentration camps . I find your comparison insulting and gross .Our service members and first responders now volunteer for this duty . Have a little respect .

        • In my post I specifically say that sometimes military fighting in wars do act for the greatest good. I would include WWII in this category. But I also want to point out that in regards to WWII, George H. W. Bush’s father, Senator Prescott Bush, was censured by congress for trading with the enemy before, during, and after WWII. This is not conspiracy theory, it is fact. Makes me question the power of the profit motive in starting wars, and just who profits financially. Basically, Prescott Bush’s helped finance the Nazis.

          As for your father, I am thankful to him for serving honorably and I regret that he lost friends in the war, but I’m sorry this does not change my opinion about the Vietnam War. There are plenty of Veterans Against the Vietnam War who agree with me, many of whom also saw their comrades die and have PTSD from their war experience. It’s possible to be against a war and what the soldiers have to do in the war, and still honor and respect the soldiers. Which I do.

          Yes we have an all-volunteer army now. Unfortunately many join for financial reasons, because they can’t get jobs in this economy. Also many are lied to by slick military recruiters, who are nothing more than high-pressure salesmen. Now the soldiers are coming home after multiple deployments with severe emotional problems, and not enough help for them.

          • I am not trying to change your opinion …my dad did not like the war either . I am trying to speak for those of us who have had our family members serve and die ( and some who come back broken from the things they have seen ) in order for you to have the freedoms that you do , to disagree, and to dissent. Someone else paid the price of admission for you ….just remember that the next time you compare their service to people joining a cult in order to get rid of alien souls so they can have super powers .

        • Midwest Mom

          Thank you for saying what you said, Kim. I don’t usually have trouble articulating my feelings, but in this case, my tears were more plentiful than words in order to respond to the post questioning the intentions of those who are serving or have served in the U.S.military.

          I also want to point out that only Scientologists use the phrase “The greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics.” It’s not a universal statement.

          • I never questioned the intentions of those serving in the military. But sometimes they had to do bad things which later caused them emotional distress. Again, I never questioned their intentions.
            Yes, “the greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics” is a statement only used by scientology, but it is a universal concept. Which is what i meant when i referred to it as the Concept of “the greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics”. The concept is a universal one, and is twisted by Scientology. And also this concept is twisted by other institutions as well, including, I am sad to say, our government and military. I am not disrespecting or dishonoring the intentions of individual members of the military when I say this Many are returning home from multiple deployments with severe emotional and physical problems which our wonderful government and military who sent them to war are doing little or nothing to help them with. Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 and I don’t think we needed to be there.

            • Midwest Mom

              My son has brain injury and damage to his spine from an ROTC accident which happened right after Thanksgiving. He can’t return to classes even for the new semester and his dream of continuing with his officer training has ended. Please, let’s not criticize the military right now.

            • Please let him know that there is a complete stranger named Kim O’Brien who is proud of him and his intentions. Peace be with you

            • Midwest Mom

              Thank you so much for your kind words, Kim. You are a sweetie! 🙂 As you can see, I erased my comments about my son in my other post. I did so because his injuries were from an ROTC accident and I didn’t want it to seem like I was equating it to war injuries. He’s very upset that he can’t continue with his officer training and has to sit out this semester at his university for medical reasons. We’re trying to focus on the positive – I just wish we didn’t live so far away from specialists!

            • sugarplumfairy

              Thinking about you, mom..

            • Midwest Mom

              Thanks sug. You are very thoughtful! 🙂

          • Amen Mom…amen

    • Ziontologist

      My dearest Sugarplumfairy, do you realize I still love you?
      Is it easier for you to believe that Scientologists are not good people? That would be so much simpler than “good people who are made to do bad things”, wouldn’t it?
      But, what would Robert Jay Lifton say about that? Are you familiar with his term,  “thought terminating cliche?”
      Please don’t get mad at me, because I try very had to respect your point of view. 
      I think a lot of it has to do with what a person believes is right or wrong, doesn’t it? 
      Or who they follow, like you said. 
      And remember that these people, who got into Scientology before there was an Internet, didn’t learn about Scientology by reading Tony’s blog the way you did …
      I’ll try to explain the subtlety of my subtle point.
      Yes, Scientologists are brainwashed! Even if you showed them proof that Hubbard was wrong, they wouldn’t even consider it! 
      Instead, they will use a “thought terminating cliche” like, “That’s ‘entheta” (evil)!”, and their brain stops there.
      Yet, there are non-Scientologists, who take their criticism of Scientology to an extreme, that do the same thing! If they come across an idea in Scientology which is benign, or even benevolent, that’s too complicated for them to process. It’s easier for them to sit back and think the subject is the purest form of evil ever invented. And they too will use a thought terminating cliche, like, “It’s all a pile of poo!” And their brain stops there.
      Let me use myself as an example. I don’t believe there is a such thing as the state of “Clear”. But I liked some of the auditing that led up to it. That, of course, does not make me an “indie”. I only liked those things which have a scientific explanation. In other words, there may be no such thing as “Dianetics” or an “engram”, but even Freud said he saw people get better just by remembering things.
      In other words, there are things in Scientology that really do change the way you feel, even though Hubbard attached his own bs explanation to it.
      But, with the upper levels that come after “Clear”, how could it not be all bs? I never did OT III, and it sounds like total bs to me. 
      But, in that Bonus Video Sunday Funny, Scientology -The OT panel, at the bottom of the page:

      Tory (Christman) Bezazian said she loved OT III! 
      I was shocked at first, but then I realized I wouldn’t argue with her! Why? Not because I’m defending Hubbard’s OT III story. I’m just inclined to think that Tory C is so “basically good” as a person that she managed to get something “good” out of it. “What the mind describes describes the mind.” And when I talk about getting something goid out of “it”, I don’t mean just the OT III “materials”, but the process of introspection she in effect performed on herself. If she says she liked OT III, I would imagine that that came from the process of introspection, combined with her being deeply intuitive … and who knows what she experienced?
      Remember, we are dealing with the human mind, which is a wondrously flexible thing. 
      And it’s not just a matter of “magical thinking”. 
      Atheism sounds great when you hear about it from Richard Dawkins, who has never lost his sense of wonder, and has a scientific explanation for just about anything! But when you look at the stories of less enlightened folk, Atheism has it’s own dubious history. Just because someone is an Atheist doesn’t mean they are free of false beliefs, that’s for sure!
      Although I may not be one of them, there are those ex-Scientologists who’ve had such bad experiences that it’s almost like they have a form of PTSD. I don’t doubt them for a minute, and they truly represent the evil effects of Scientology.
      Most exes I know are negative, to be sure, and very snarky. They love to point out how Hubbard tried to cover his tracks with policies that don’t make sense. Or they make jokes … like, how the Sea Org bought an old radar station in Alaska, the kind with the rotating radar antenna. Only the Sea Org refitted the rotating antenna with a giant pair of rotating “cans”, hooked up to an e-meter inside. They’re trying to get a “read” on Ron! (lol)
      But if someone said they had a tremendous win in Scientology, most exes I know wouldn’t argue … 
      On the other hand, when someone wasn’t having any wins, they might have pretended to, just to play along …
      For example, a person might have an insightful “revelation”, “epiphany” or “win” from being audited, and then talk about it to others. And then someone else will pretend to have the same win. I’ve see it with my own eyes.
      I’m not defending Scientology, and I am definitely not defending Hubbard. I am just saying not to be surprised when you come across some goodness when studying the subject. How can you start something that’s supposed to be a “religion” without something good in it? There’s got to be some good, if only because most Scientologists are good people. Even those two investigators that worked for the CO$, Paul Marrick and Greg Arnold, said that they observed average Scientologists to be decent people.
      I’m not trying to kill your groove, sugarplumfairy. 
      You are 100% right about Scientology.
      Scientology is an evil web that traps people and takes them for everything they’ve got, even their children.
      Go ahead and give Scientology the condemnation it deserves! 
      But remember that, when dealing with the highly evolved human mind and how it deals with “belief”, it can get complicated … fair enough?
      If it weren’t for our highly evolved human minds, there wouldn’t have been anything for Hubbard to exploit. The thing that made some of us susceptible to Scientology is actually the same thing that makes us all human. It’s how we, as humans, process information. And for this reason, we must be ever-vigilante in fighting totalitarianism in all of it’s forms. I think about that all the time … I think we live in a highly propagandized world!

      • 0tessa

        I read your comment with much interest.
        The fact alone that so many people have been attracted to Scientology (in the past, ‘the good old days’) ‘proves’ in a way that there must have been something worthwhile in it for them. And I still think there is, after all the reading I did. But I have also read (also written by Hubbard) that, in order to have a philosophy or religion accepted, how weird it may be, you will have to put right things, a certain wisdom, in it. The good things in it will attract people and so they can be indoctrinated with the less good things, and paying a lot for it all the way. (Not a literary quote, but my own words; I can’t remember in which transcribed lecture I read this.)
        But when I read it, I clearly remember thinking at that time: is that what you have been doing here?
        But even if that has been the case and I think now that he did, the good things, if you see them, remain. I know of exes who think along this line. I see that they have their wins, but also how they discard the crap that surrounds it. It took them a lot of time and experience to be able to see it that way.
        (I hope my idea comes across – English not being my native tongue.)

        • Ziontologist

          We’re you thinking of “half-truths?”

          • 0tessa

            Any truth is relative, depending on context. There are no absolutes.

            • sugarplumfairy

              There are no absolutes? Says who? Truth is not relative.. Absolutely..

            • Semper Phi

              Yes, false data stripping is very much still being done in Scientology. And it’s an example of an idea that could have been beneficial – like you say, it’s good to examine “data” that one holds and the source of the data – but which in Scn functions solely as a method to effect brainwashing.

              For those unfamiliar with it, “FDS” entails a list of questions about a subject designed to uncover basic “data” that a person holds about it that are in fact false and that prevent learning in that area. Not bad in concept. For example, a kid’s beloved grandpa tells him the world is flat. Years later in school, he is unable to learn and succeed in science. In FDS, he realizes that that grandpa’s datum, accepted and trusted since childhood, is false. Once he realizes that, he can then accept new information that conflicts with grandpa’s datum, and his learning progresses. Not bad, right?

              But there is a final step, the “true data study,” which I think is the dangerous part of FDS. That is when the person who is *conducting* the FDS assembles a list of the “true” data on the subject for the student to study. The student is not encouraged to go forth and learn the true data on the subject on his own, he is given a list of references laying out the true data for him to now accept. And of course, in Scientology, it was without exception (in my experience anyway) a list of LRH references only. It is an essential part of handlings for students who are having trouble on course – find the ideas they hold that are contrary to LRH, have the students themselves spot those ideas as “false,” and then replace them with LRH’s “true data” to the exclusion of anything else.

              Another example of a potentially beneficial idea twisted by Hubbard into something evil.

      • Very insightful post. There is indeed, in my experience, plenty enough truth, or valid concepts embedded within the subject to keep one interested. One of THE basic concepts for example is that people can improve themselves – and this is patently obvious and provable. World champion memory man Dominic O Brien gives some simple mental exercises in his books that anyone can do to improve their own memory, for example. One can also easily improve overall mental well-being – here’s 5 things literally anybody can do

        That doesn’t excuse the “bait and switch” that is prevalent throughout Scientology indoctrination though. What seems to happen is that you accept one truth, so another less plausible yet potentially believable idea gets accepted, despite lack of evidence, and this then becomes your own “truth”, until suddenly you literally believe we’re all decended from dead space aliens because of an evil Intergalactic Warlord.

        You’ll be familiar with the Dissem Drill. You basically get a person to tell you what’s “ruining” them. In other words get them to tell you what they would most want to improve in their lives – then simply tell them that X Scientology service will handle that for them. It’s a classic bait and switch – the service you “sell” is nothing to do with what they said they wanted handled – but now the person has his “ruin” shoved back in his face and feels he should go along with the program. It’s pretty dishonest stuff. But once you’re on the road to believing that “Scientology is good”, it becomes ever harder to apply critical thinking to sift out the worthwhile from the complete bunk.

        On top of that you are hit daily on course with subtle thought-conditioning such as Hubbard being “Source” with capital S. That’s an interesting one because as anyone who knows a little about the power of suggestion will know that the mind will easily attribute “source” as being the source of everything, all knowledge, not just literally the source of the writings one is studying.

        Another example: Hubbard was no fool, and instinctively he knew people often felt “trapped” for whatever reason. So again, using the power of suggestion he states that Scientology will get one “out of the trap”. Indeed the first issue of every single course in Scientology has the words “..and if we miss getting out of trap now, we may never again have another chance.” This is the stuff of radicalism and breeds fanaticism. “The greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics” dictates that one must do what is best for Scientology – an “end justifies the means” variant.

        Scientologists are not bad people – just ask Jason Beghe.

        • Guest

          Gooble gobble, we accept you… one of us !

          • sugarplumfairy

            Guest, what exactly do you mean by that response? I don’t get it..

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Apparently we have a “Turkey” on board.

            • Observer
            • BuryTheNuts2

              I don’t think SPF sounds like a “freaks” kinda gal.

            • Observer

              Me either, and it doesn’t really shed any light on what Guest meant, but it’s where the gooble gobble thing comes from …

            • BuryTheNuts2

              True that!

            • Deckard__Cain

              It’s a quote from the movie “Freaks” in which the circus freaks are chanting at the pretty girl, “gobble gobble gobble, one of us, one of us”. It is a strange moment in a disturbing movie.

            • Observer

              Ah. I missed that.

      • Captain Howdy

        Gooble gobble, we accept you… one of us !

        “If it weren’t for our highly evolved human minds”

        You mean the ones that are currently destroying the planet beyond the point of no return ?

        • jensting

          No! Language is the virus!!

          • Captain Howdy

            “Pontypool” ?

        • Ziontologist

          I use the expression “highly evolved human minds” as code for the fact that I am speaking anout human nature from the viewpoint of science, not religion.
          Yes, with nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction, we are certainly capable of making the planet uninhabitable.
          But isn’t there more to the history of science than weapons of mass destruction?
          800 years ago people didn’t know what germs were!
          Did you know that in the 1st decade of this century there was less war per capita than any other time in human history?
          I’m gonna wrap this up, but the data is out there to support the fact that science and technology has done more to make this world a happier, healthier and wealthier palace for more people than anything else I history.
          Now, you did call me a pseudo intellectual, so perhaps I’m wasting my time by responding to you. On the other hand, I don’t hate you, and sometimes you’re quite funny!

          • Captain Howdy

            Nuclear weapons are the least of our concern. think Paul Ehrlich as opposed to Dennis Ehrlich.This planet will be biologically kaput by the end of this century.

            Maybe you and mama should start prepping now, Portnoy, just to be safe.

            • Ziontologist

              “Maybe you and mama should start prepping now, Portnoy, just to be safe.”

              Really Tonto?

      • jensting

        Thought terminating cliche is a concept to keep right at the front of one’ mind when dealing with L Ron Hubbard – I agree 100% .

        Gerry Armstrong puts it well: Those who embrace LRH’s “sppressive person” doctrine are the people who are in a cult. In or out of the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology. What is (one of) LRH’s notions about an SP? That nothing they say should be thought about. The “thought stopping” happens right there when someone says “that’s an SP talking, I need to stop listening.”

      • sugarplumfairy

        You may still love me, Zion, but you sure don’t know me.. I didn’t learn about co$ by reading Tony’s blog, although he has added greatly to my education..

        scientology is a crock of sh*t.. you can type ’til the cows come home and you won’t convince me otherwise.. you say, as you usually do, “…there are things in scientology that really do change the way you feel…” you know what? A good bowel movement changes the way you feel.. and nobody yells at you, or says nasty things to you or cleans out your bank account..

        And i know I’m 100% right about scientology, so don’t worry about killing my grove.. the worse you’ll do is give me a headache with your ceaseless proselytizing.. but unlike scientologists, I’m allowed to take an Advil..

        And I still think you think too much.. My wish for you is that you find something in your life that makes you forget all about scientology..

        • Vistaril

          Yep, without a doubt Scientology is a crock of shit, a dangerous and evil crock of shit at that – but – there are some good bits to it. Failing to recognise that is a pitfall in criticising the subject because it ignores that the trap has bait. Scientology has many things which can change the way a person feels, and it can seem a positive change, certainly initially: for example, there’s the “love bombing”, the chance to talk to someone about one’s deepest darkest fears and concerns, the comaraderie, the (fake) “affinity”, acceptance, the sense (however false) of having found “the answer”, the sense of joining like-minded others in a unified and altruistic endeavour, bundles and bundles of repackaged, reworded but useful common sense, and techniques for applying that common sense. Just as a herion dealer (I’m told) will often let you have the first few hits for free, so are Scientology’s first “wins”. A devil will not lead you astray by overt force but, rather, offer something appealing, something *almost* too good to be true

          The counter argument to these pestilent and inevitably subjective “success stories”, I suggest, is to recognise them for what they are and to point out that there is nothing of value in Scientology which hasn’t been plagiarised and all of which can easily be obtained elsewhere by means which have been tested and proved, are more effective, longer lasting, cheaper, and far, far safer. Scientologists and their apologists fall over with this argument because while they endlessly spout their “success stories” there are seldom, if any, specifics. More often than not its all about nebulous feelings of euphoria (post-hypnotic usually) and statements like “my space is so much larger and data so much more stable, I don’t have words to describe it, yadda yadda yadda”. The reason they don’t have the words to describe it is because “it” doesn’t exist, except in their imagination having been placed there by Scientology. Instead, they resort to their own manufactured “keyed-out” language which only they can “duplicate”. Occasionally Scientologists can be enclouraged into provided specifics, yet not one specific that I have seen, and I have seen a lot, is unique to Scientology.

          And then there’s the whole failure to “obnose” the causation vs correlation aspect . . . another effective counter argument to entertain.

          TL/DR: I think I know where you are coming from with this, yet also believe that you and Ziontology are not really that far apart. IMHO, recognising that there are some – initial – positives makes you a more effective critic by leveraging an opportunity to expose those positives for what they are: bait.

          • sugarplumfairy

            Thank you for trying to explain it to me, Vistaril.. I’ve learned a lot from your comments.. Obnosing causation vs. correlation is not something I spend a lot of time on.. But something tells me you already know that..

            A few days ago, I was watching Oprah.. She was talking to Eckhart Tolle and he mentioned something about taking time to notice the “is-ness” of things.. My hackles raised immediately.. Immediately I thought of scientology and wondered where Tolle was coming from..

            I think, after seeing first hand co$’ invasion of the body snatcher-type effect on someone close to me, that I am hypersensitive to the harmful possibilities of scentology tech.. I saw what auditing and training routines did to an intelligent, humorous, kind and independent spirit.. So I guess I’m just not willing to concede anything good can come from that tech.. Thank god I’m not a risk-taker or I might be regging little old ladies right alongside him now instead just obnosing about it..

            • BuryTheNuts2

              The scary part is I think you have made Debbie Cook look like an amateur!

            • sugarplumfairy


            • Vistaril

              No worries. I too have learned from your comments. Apart from a few “scrapes” while out protesting, I haven’t suffered anything like losing a loved one, thus, no, I didn’t really know where you were coming from on this. Not until BuryTheNuts2 mentioned it. My bad for not paying enough attention. Stick to your guns. I’m all in favour of Scientology facing a battery of varying responses when its being peddled because, although some shells will be deflected, others will get through. While logic has its own power, so too does vehement emotion borne by real experience. Strength in diversity, I say.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          Sugar Plum, have you ever ran into your Ex since he went into the Co$?
          Do you know if he is still in or not?

          • sugarplumfairy

            Not sure.. I kept track of him for a few years but went cold turkey on all things scientological in 2005.. Finding Tony’s blog this year drew me back in.. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t still curious about him, though..

            • Ziontologist

              Losing someone to Scientology must be a horrible experience. To me, it’s imeasurably sad, and I am sorry for your loss.
              You are right about Scientology. But you aren’t always right about people.
              I am not proselytizing.
              I am very interested in science, especially cognitive science. This is a blog about Scientology, and cognitive science, imho, is the only way I can really understand the things that Vistaril was trying to explain to you, like how Scinos get hooked.
              I think I am right about some things. I can understand why that upsets you, because it’s too late to go back and change what happened to you. You can hate for that if it makes you feel better. The truth is that if more people were educated in cognitive science they would be far less susceptible to Scientology or other forms of pseudo science.
              I have always been fascinated by both art, science and human nature. I live a richer life because of that.
              I hope that someday you’ll understand.

            • sugarplumfairy

              I promise I’ll work on it, my friend..

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Did you ever think of starting your own blog? Many times you bring up salient points regarding both cognitive science and pseudo Scientology (Hey, it quacks like that duck).
              You could probably produce some pretty intense reads.
              Might be something to think about….

            • Ziontologist

              Wow, that’s very flattering, btn, that you would suggest a blog of my own. I just wouldn’t want it to be about Scientology, and I don’t know enough about cognitive science!
              You definitely have a knack. You get along with everyone.
              I do too, but in “real life.”
              In real life, I have never, ever, ever talked about Scientology. Like, ever.
              I was always that way. Even the years I was “in,” I kept it to myself.
              I would put my Scientology books FACE DOWN on my mother’s table.
              Scientology was a very personal experience for me. I tried to be honest with myself
              about the subject. I always thought there was more to who I was than
              could be explained by Hubbard’s philosophy. And I left after Clear.
              I no longer view life through “Tone Scales” and “Triangles.” Even so, I don’t like to be associated with the subject, because of all the negative assumptions people make.
              BTN, isn’t the expression “pseudo-science” just a shortened form of “pseudo-Scientology” … or is that a double negative?
              A quirky friend of our family, who works for the State Department, joined
              us for Thanksgiving dinner last November.
              She asked a question that my sister and I thought was a little, well, quirky!
              She asked if “fiction” would be better referred to as “non-fact”?!?
              My sister freaked out! She said, “A work of fiction can express a deeper truth!”
              I said, “Even if a work of fiction wasn’t literally true, it could have a subtext, or some
              other device to express something true, perhaps about moralty, or the times we live in. Even Buffy the Vampire Slayer had a subtext …”
              As weird as that sounds, the State Department Lady can be funny sometimes. She’s been to
              the middle east a lot over the years, and she’s over seas right now.
              She sent me this email:

              For the first time,
              women are now being allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia:
              (see photo)

            • Midwest Mom

              That photo is hilarious! I need one!

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Why would a blog by you have to be solely about either of those things?
              I am sure there is more to you than deep thought and a few years of Scientology?
              Your a musician…so that adds Art to the mix.
              And you “can be” downright goofy funny on occasion.
              And I mean this particular sentence as a sincere compliment.
              (even though you are much funnier wearing the oiliness table).
              Writing is “limitless” as long as you don’t get too didactic.

              Here is what I would love to read:
              A deconstruction of LRH’s “Self Analysis” and showing why, one, it works…but why does it work? And how does it make you feel. You have said many times you got something out of it, but you really never explained what.
              And two it isn’t LRH’s in the first place.
              He completely stole it from Freud. Completely, hands down ripped off the dude and repackaged it with 700 questions and a silly disk.

              Oh, and I agree with your sister on a work of fiction can express a deeper truth.
              Something conceptual certainly can come from ideas and then become a reality. Ideas are not always truth. They are just ideas, that become theories that sometimes play out into much, much bigger (and truer) things.

              Love that photo btw.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    While we’re waiting for Nancy’s Discovery debut, this is more excellent news brought by Mary McConnell from A sizeable international company that does interventions and has been referring customers to Narconons is apologizing (he was a former patient) and No Longer Referring! Multiple Miscavige cash registers just slammed shut. Whoop! If you wonder how you can help, I’m sure Mary would love to hear from you.,12144.0.html

    • BuryTheNuts2

      That is awesome news.

    • Observer

      Tick tock, Davey!

    • Observer

      That thread is a long but fascinating read. That guy has guts, integrity, and knows the true meaning of “ethical”.

      • TheHoleDoesNotExist

        I just read some more details. The depth of criminality and fraud is even greater than we have known so far and boy, is that saying some. Jeezuz, they hire convicted sex offenders now too? From the excellent details of what he is laying down, there is no excuse for the FBI not to close all Narconons, whatever name they use, right now. How many categories of crimes are we now up to?

        I have to say that Miscavige has taken the level of criminality to a whole new platform. This is serious $, hundreds of millions, and as I said, it now looks like the very types of crimes being committed to extract money is increasing, straight up and vertical…and despicable. Oh, and non religious, right Davey? Miscavige imo has gone serial criminal at this point and so happy that he via his mouthpieces keeps insisting these are Not religious. Great! So can he be arrested now for crying out loud? just when you think you’ve heard it all, can’t get any worse, can’t get any crazier.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        It was really interesting.
        But yeah, It was long.
        I am starting to think I may need one of those ‘Evelyn Wood’ speed reading courses.
        It may be beneficial to get me through 2013….

  • Captain Howdy

    It’s great that this is going to be on Discovery Investigation because it means Dog the Bounty Hunter fans may learn something besides how the bail system.

  • Mrs Libnish

    Thanks for the notice, I am going to set my DVR…I’m sorry for your loss. You will be missed the next few days.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    HuffPost picks for Best Books of 2013 so far… includes Lawrence Wright’s “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief”.

    My god, what is February gonna bring?

    • While that’s nice, really, it’s only been 2013 for 8 fricken days. Why would they think we need that kind of list already?

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Hey, did you read that whole list of books?
      It’s also got Neil Gaiman on it.

  • It All Comes Out

    Tony, I’m sorry to hear about the death in your family. I hope that you can take time to be with your loved ones without feeling pressured to keep feeding this site.

    It’s great that this documentary is coming out! Thanks for the heads-up. The cult’s cruelty in forcing a pregnant woman to live in a comfortless parking garage is just another example of their contempt for human life, except for that of Miscavige and a few super-rich and famous people. And once the money runs out, those poor suckers will suddenly find that they are disposable too.

    Congratulations to Nancy Many, the Discovery Channel and the British production company for their courage in revealing the truth about this vicious, exploitive, manipulative, litigious, criminal “self-help” business masquerading as a religion!

  • dagobarbz

    That channel must be expanded service here. Never even heard of Discovery Investigation before. I’m sure it will be available to low-rent peons later on…

    • Sandy

      On DirecTV, it is 285

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Thanks for this!….I can barely work the remote and I found it…Yippee….

  • i-Betty

    Tony, my condolences. I wish you and your family well. Much love.

  • N. Graham

    Condolences and prayers for your loss Mr. Ortega. Also, I’m writing at about 1:30 in the afternoon and I see there are already seventy comments! I think this is even surpassing the Village Voice blog numbers.

    Looking forward to the Nancy Many show next week! That station has excellent penetration on cable and satellite networks so a lot of people should see it.
    Was just reading about how Africa has such low Internet penetration, the lowest in the world at about 15% of the population with access, which might be a little high. This is no doubt one of the main reasons for the recent concentration of the cult into Africa. One of the few places where someone can’t Google them and find out the truth.

  • I am very sorry for your loss Tony.

  • MO Mom

    Condolences to you and your family on your loss. May happy memories give you strength and peace.

  • Sorry for you loss, Tony.

    This is totally unrelated to the Discovery Nancy Many episode which I’m excited to see. Last night I watched “Oranges and Sunshine”, an excellent movie about Margaret Humphryes and Britain’s program of forced migration of children to various colonies, mainly Australia but also New Zealand, Canada and Rhodesia. It struck me that perhaps one of the main reasons Australia has been so much more willing and diligent in investigating Scientology for abuses, especially of children, then the US is that it has a current history of exposed large scale child trafficking and human rights abuses.

    The forced migration of hundreds of thousands of children, who where lied to and deported because it was cheaper to care for them abroad, only ended in the 1970’s. The children in Australia where abused physically, mentally, and sexually at many institutions (particularly Christian Brothers) where they were often used as slave labor. Frequently, they were told they owed for their room and board when they were of age to leave the institutions. For 23 years Margaret campaigned on the behalf of the now adult migrant children to get funds and access to records so they could attempt to reconnect to families they were told had died. Her work received much press and created great controversies in both countries.

    Eventually, both the British Prime Minister and Australian Prime Minister issued apologies for the scheme in 2009 and 2010. This is still fresh to Australians. There are obvious parallels to how children are treated in Scientology and how the Sea Org operates which may resonate more in Australia then it does in the US where it can be difficult to convince people that such wholesale abuse can be committed by an organization. Here’s Kevin Rudd’s apology –

  • N. Graham

    Side note: The libraries in Michigan are just starting to get their Ron Encyclopedias. It is a big topic on the librarian listserv, so far there have been no positive comments; one library said they refused shipment, one said they sent it back, a few said they go right to the book sale and one said they go right to the dumpster, one said they would sell theirs on EBay and buy other books with the money, one said they called Bridge Publications to tell them they didn’t want the books but they “weren’t very responsive.” Our library still has not received them, which we are grateful for.

    • Observer

      How could you possibly turn your nose up at THIS?

      • N. Graham

        You’re right, what was I thinking?

        • BuryTheNuts2

          You are stuck on a desert island….do you choose these books? Or “wilson”?
          I am going with the ball.

          • Ze Moo

            You’ll choose the books after you toilet paper runs out.

  • Anononyourside

    Those readers who have followed Tony’s posts about the CoS’s paid Internet ads will be happy to learn

    • moxonmoxoff

      Thanks for the update. In a similar vein, when I googled “Dangerous Persuasions Scientology”, I got an ad by Scientology linking to a youtube video. I won’t link to it here but ya’ll can do a google search. IF you want “the truth.” lol

  • moxonmoxoff

    Found this while trawling the web–it was a call for “ex cult members” for a new series posted in August 2011. Looks like they got enough bites to get it into production. Lists the story producer as Peter Johonnett.

    Also, link to the WWP thread where Nancy posted about the series earlier today. There is a possibly useful link in the thread for those who want to watch the series (possibly limited to UK). Enjoy.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      This is awesome.
      I would love to see a dramatization of what Paulette Cooper went through.
      Now that would make a hell of a movie.

  • Artoo45

    Condolences to you and your family, Tony. Thank you for all you do.

  • Vistaril

    Ohhhh . . . just delicious news from Nancy. This documentary, I believe, will reach and inoculate a whole new audience.

    (Hi Tony – sorry for your loss. May peace and strength be with you and your loved ones.)

  • EnthralledObserver

    Condolences on the loss of your family member, Tony. We’ll see you when you are ready.

  • Poison Ivy

    Deepest condolences to you Tony.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    Scientology footbullet helps give Lawrence Wright’s new book “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief” promotion coverage that’s beyond book reviews buried in the back of the L.A. Times…. Thank goodness Hubbard made sure no one could change a word of his Fail.,0,3033993.story

  • Ze Moo
    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Thanks ZeMoo. I like Tony’s journalistic integrity and compass. He doesn’t use the word “abuse” in this article. He lays down just a few morsels of facts that any intelligent reader will recognize what it is.

      The abuse of children in a scientology environment should be a focal point when legislators get around to amending our laws. I believe there is now a political will as well as awareness of American citizens that protecting religious freedom does Not cancel our obligations to protect our children.

      • Ze Moo

        Even the christian ‘rattlesnake handlers’ had to come to an accommodation with society (the feds actually). Result, you have to be 18 to play with the rattlesnakes. Religions that eschew blood transfusions and medical care can find themselves in court when a child’s welfare is involved. I have no idea why the sea orgs child abuse hasn’t been addressed. Maybe that is one of Homeland Securities investigations……

    • Observer

      Davey must feel like Captain Hook … he can hear the ticking of the clock but he can’t see the crocodile. Only in his case there are hundreds of crocodiles.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    More reading material brought to you by Tony’s cats while he’s away. Haven’t read yet. Should be delicious.

    “From Script To Screen: Your Guide To All The Deleted/Missing Scenes In ‘The Master’ ”

  • mook

    excellent Hollywood Reporter article re: Travolta excerpting Lawrence Wright’s book.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Holy Cow! Scientology has been in the Intensive Care unit for the last year and I predict Lawrence Wright’s book, “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief” is The catalyst that will finally pull the plug. Oh, and the scientology celebrities that have selfishly, immorally and irreprehensibly helped promote this horror to the public Knowing about the abuse … well, I can’t put that in print here.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Well that is a most interesting article. This book of his is obviously going to be fastidiously researched and in depth. This is going to be extremely UGLY.
      And I mean that in a good way.
      Whoo hooo.

  • Discovery produces very junky programming. I hope that this one rises above the usual fare.

  • Midwest Mom

    Great excerpt from Lawrence Wright’s book. The sci-bots are on full attack mode. Enjoy!

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Ah Thanks, that was fun. I love Sci-bots. Especially with a little salt and some garlic.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Let the scientology flying monkeys screech and flap all they want. There aren’t enough of them on the entire planet to drown out the wailing sobs of mothers, fathers, sons and daughters who have had their hearts ripped out and their family torn from their lives.

      They have finally been given a voice and all the human beings that scientologists despise are listening. John Travolta, Tom Cruise, Priscilla Presley, Kirstie Alley will Never Ever be able to look into the camera again and not see their own true reflection, a star’s version of Hell on Hollywood Blvd.

    • Observer

      I predict a severe popcorn shortage this year.

      • Midwest Mom

        Next on “Hoarders”: Extremely attractive men and women who hoard popcorn. 🙂

  • SP ‘Onage

    “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal,
    love leaves a memory no one can steal.”

    Tony, much love and heartfelt good wishes. Looking forward to seeing you back at the Underground Bunker, but please, come back only when you’re ready. We’ve got a lot of great people here who will keep us informed and entertained, so don’t worry.

    Great news about Nancy! Can’t wait to see it, that’s if CofS doesn’t get it scrubbed before it airs.

  • BuryTheNuts2

    Sweeney’s book is now at ten US reviews…two by bots.
    I took the first swipe at em with my paw.

  • Lucy gray

    Click To AwareYou have done really a superb job with your web site. Marvelous stuff is here to read.

  • Bill Maloney

    Just watched the doc on IDHD. Great show.the people that put her through that hell and many others need the shit kicked out of them.that cult has to be stoped..Nancy you go girl. Nice to see you and you’re family are doing good and happy.. I wish someone would start a national stop Scientology movement. I’d join today. Evel shit..Bill