Cult or Church? The creepiest things to come out about Scientology
Lately, a lot of information is coming out about the Church of Scientology and how it keeps members locked-in financially and psychologically. The church’s specific doctrines and rules keep members from leaving and taking their money with them.
While the Scientology church puts on a front of being about ending war, crime, and poverty, former members paint a darker picture. Celebrities like Leah Remini who left the church and docu-series like Going Clear shed light on what it’s really like in the church. Here are some of the creepiest facts to come out of Scientology.
Advancement costs a boatload of money
The Church’s PR team says it doesn’t cost a thing for a free consultation and training is also free. That’s not true according to former Scientologists like Leah Remini. Remini accounts that to reach OT8, the highest known tier a Scientologist can reach, it cost her over $300,o00.
For a Hollywood actress, that’s not too much of a problem. However, for an average Scientology church member, they take out second and third mortgages and even work multiple jobs to pay for advancement.
However, there are other levels after OT8 which are estimated to cost millions of dollars to attain. Once you reach OT8, the Church of Scientology reveals that L Ron Hubbard believed God was a lie and there are infinite levels to reach. So church members have to keep churning out more money to reach higher levels in the ranks.
Outside information is lies
The Church of Scientology teaches that any source outside of itself is a lie. Therefore, according to the church, if it wasn’t written, filmed, or produced by a Scientologist or the Church of Scientology, it’s not true. That belief makes it hard for people to leave the church by making it harder to trust different points of view.
This belief also makes it harder for Church of Scientology members to seek out information. Reportedly, members who read outside sources of media are “punished” for doing so.
Most notoriously, Scientology considers psychology to be a “pseudoscience.” Prominent church member and actor Tom Cruise even called it that in an interview. Therefore, Scientologists are discouraged to seek therapy or take medication for any mental health issues.
They record your “audits”
Part of the Church of Scientology is auditing, therapy-like techniques meant to clear your soul of “entities” and reach higher levels. A part of that auditing is telling your auditor your deepest darkest secrets, which the church records. If you leave the church, they can use these recordings to discredit you.
The Sea Org, the international service wing of the Scientology church, makes its recruits sign a billion-year contract. They believe your soul will be owned by the organization a literal billion years after you die.
The Sea Org is also the wing responsible for keeping other Scientology members in line. In her Reddit AMA, Leah Remini said she “knew” members of Sea Org were reading it to find ways to discredit her. Instead of being mean, she offered any of them reading it help if they wanted to leave.
The higher you are, the more you’re tracked
If you express any doubt or uncertainty in Scientology, don’t expect any of your Scientologist friends to keep it a secret. Per church policy, doubters and skeptics are turned in to church leadership and can be sent away for “reeducation.”
This is what’s thought to have happened to the current Church of Scientology David Miscavige’s wife, Shelly. It’s believed she was planning on leaving, so the church “disappeared” her and is guarding her in a house for reeducation. The church denies this, but guards the house where she is supposedly being held vigilantly.
It’s incredibly difficult to leave
When Katie Holmes filed for divorce from Tom Cruise in 2012, the word “escape” was used. Holmes had to plan her departure with her daughter, Suri, when she wouldn’t be stopped by Scientologists appointed to guard her.
People who leave the Church of Scientology are considered “suppressive people” or “antisocial people.” Scientologists aren’t allowed to work with, speak to, or even listen to former members. People who leave may never see their Scientologist friends and family again, making escape a difficult choice.