Because of various problems with Blogger, I've copied everything as of November 26, 2012 over to WordPress. The new location is Ask the Scientologist. I am not deleting this blog and will still accept comments and answer questions here too, but any new articles will appear at the WordPress location. I apologize if this causes any problems.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


The recent announcement from "Emma" of Ex-Scientology Message Board that, after October, she is no longer going to run the message board, has gotten me thinking about those on the front lines.

First, I think this is a very good thing for Emma to do.  God! What an incredible job she has done over the years maintaining some control over that herd of cats while under continuous attack from the Church of Scientology.  In 2010, when the church uncovered her real name, the attacks got considerably worse with bogus legal actions.  Then, as if that wasn't hard enough, recently, her mother passed away.

Emma's message board has helped thousands, probably tens of thousands, of people recover from Scientology's thought control and abuse.  Her board has been read by millions.  She is awesome.  And, while she will be greatly missed,  there comes a time when a fighter should retire -- undefeated and victorious, for sure -- but enough is enough.

At its core, the Church of Scientology is evil, degraded, abusive and destructive.  Those who help people escape from, and recover from, Scientology's abuses and thought control methods and who work to expose the crimes and abuse, are directly connected to this evil.  How much can a person take of such evil?  How much should a person put up with before they back off and someone else takes their place?

It is amazing to me that one single person can do so much against everything the insane, wealthy Church of Scientology can throw at them.  Emma is not the only such person, and they all deserve our gratitude, our thanks and our admiration.  The ability of these single individuals to defeat the Church of Scientology shows how decency, goodness and truth can defeat evil.

And don't doubt we all have defeated the Church of Scientology -- especially folks like Emma who have borne the brunt of Scientology's attacks.

Today, Scientology's secrets are all well-known.  Today, Hubbard is known in the real world for exactly what he was.  Today, Scientology has very few adherents and virtually no new recruits.  Today, every Scientology "church" is empty and struggling -- or closed.

Yes, Scientology's few remaining, hard-core believers are still fighting, lying, abusing and attacking but their teeth have been pulled.  For the most part, police and the courts recognize their lies and quickly shut down their bogus, desperate attacks.

New allies are showing up to see that Scientology's lies, abuse, crimes and fraud are exposed and the guilty are brought to justice.  The opposition to the Church of Scientology actually grows daily.

So, some of the fighters are taking a well-earned break.  Some of the blogs and message boards are quieter now, like this one, or even dormant, like Leaving Scientology.  These fighters have earned a respite from the front lines.  Don't worry, there are lots and lots of fighters on the job, and more to come.

Those fighters who are withdrawing from the front lines do so as victors and those who take over the fight are grateful and thankful.


  1. That is a terrific tribute to Emma and other hardworking critics who have helped.

    Mary McConnell

  2. Thank you, Bill.

    "Emma" is a friend to all exes, Anons, OGs etc etc and not just the fortunate few (like me) who know her personally. What she's achieved with ESMB has been phenomenal. The personal attacks she's endured because of that are despicable, befitting of a totally malevolent organization like $cientology.

    Daily the cult shrinks - its showpiece Narconon in Canada (Three Rivers) is closing, thanks to David Love's unrelenting exposes of it. Chicago org got picketed on the weekend and there wasn't much left to picket by the look of the photos posted on wwp. And here in Oz the cult is really gasping for its last breaths. Thanks in no small part to the community that sites like ESMB have fostered.

    I know that I wouldn't be an active ex if not for ESMB. I know that most of the Oz media, including that surrounding Sen Xenophon's speech to the Oz Senate, wouldn't have happened but for ESMB. It's been THE place for ex-$cientologists to get together and heal together. And then go take on the toxic cult together.

    I'm more than happy for Emms to retire - I look forward to do the same someday :)

    1. Yes, things are going well. It seems like, every day, some new good news about Scientology's demise is published. And ESMB was a big help for me as well as I woke up.


  3. Excellent, Bill... as always!

  4. I don't want to burst any one's bubble, but Hubbard achieved his goals. Scientology's survival is ensured into the indefinite future. It's archives are intact, its (interest accumulating) billions are secure in overseas bank accounts, and it need only about five to ten thousand core members - world wide - to function as a criminal conspiracy and intelligence operation, one dedicated to preserving forever and ever (amen!) the "name and image of L.Ron Hubbard."

    It can be relatively dormant for years and then reactivate.

    In the meantime, that core group of fanatics (both inside and outside corporate Scientology) will work to enhance Hubbard's "acceptability." and - in the span of years - await the destruction of the enemy's accumulated information, and - yes - the destruction of the enemy itself. Destruction by what? Most fundamentally, by old age.

    That's right, Scientology is now in a position to survive and endure for a long time, and simply hold on, semi-dormant, while others fade away.

    It's a war of attrition and waiting.

    What can be done: Most fundamentally, information can be preserved. The assumption by some seems to be that it will be preserved automatically, but that's not necessarily how it is.

    With the 1993 USA tax deal, Scientology reached a milestone. It has established itself. It's not going to disappear, but, eventually, its current critics will disappear.

    Don't wish to depress anyone, but sometimes a dose of reality is a good thing.

    This is not a time for celebration. Scientology has not lost.

    1. @Presto

      I understand what you are saying but I don't think you are correct at all.

      Sure, there will always be believers, that's a given. And, because of that, some form of "Scientology" will still exist in the future. But the number of believers will be miniscule, like the numbers who believe in séances today.

      The reason your scenario is wrong, in my opinion, is because Scientology is built almost entirely upon lies -- and those lies have been thoroughly exposed. The lies now cannot be "unexposed".

      Because the truth was fought for so long by Scientologists, the truth was proven again and again and again. As much as Scientologists want to undo all that, it just isn't going to happen.

      Scientology cannot exist in the real world where its lies can be, and have been, all debunked. It can only exist where people are ignorant and the Internet does not exist and that isn't the direction this world is going in.

      That said, there is still a lot of work to be done to bring Scientology criminals to justice and there are a lot of people working on just that job.

    2. I would have to disagree in several areas.

      Firstly, Scientology is built on lies *and* truths. That's one of its key gimmicks.

      Many things have been exposed, but exposing something and having others understand it are two different matters. One remembers the foot bullets of Scientology, but don't forget its successes. Scientology succeeded. It exists, it survives. THE HARD PART HAS ALREADY BEEN DONE - AND SUCCESSFULLY.

      Scientology DOES exist in the real world. A real world where some liars do quite well, even after they are exposed as liars.

      I'm not trying to discourage you or anyone. TREMENDOUS PROGRESS HAS BEEN MADE EXPOSING AND UNDERSTANDING THE CULT OF SCIENTOLOGY, but let's not get goofy with overconfidence.

      I've seen it many times before. And what's the point?

      I'd rather be realistic. And realism tells me to be optimistic, and to be delighted with the amount of information that is available, and amazed at the existence of a FREE Internet that makes that information easily accessible.

      However, that Internet may not always be as free as it is today.

      I hope I'm not misunderstood.

      EX Scn MB has done a huge amount of good for many people, and it is vitally needed in the future.

      There's still much to be done. Scientology has as many members as the Mafia, and lots of money, plus the protection of being a "religion," etc.

      It's still dangerous and it still hurts people, and don't think it can't revive. That would be foolish.

      Thanks for your great blog.

      Sorry for being a pain in the ass. :)

    3. @Presto

      Oh, heavens, you're not being a pain in the ass, I enjoy a good discussion. You make good points ... but ...

      If Scientology were going to ever succeed (in any normal sense of the word), it would currently be succeeding. And it isn't.

      Like I said, I agree that some form of "Scientology" will "survive" but that survival will be survival in the way "spiritualism" and séances "survive". Scientology's dream of one day becoming a "major religion" (or more accurately, "THE major religion") is just not going to happen ... ever.

      You accurately point out there is some truth in Scientology. However, as someone else so wisely stated, the parts of Scientology that are true are not unique to Scientology and the parts that are unique to Scientology are not true.

      The parts that are false are fundamental to Scientology, they define Scientology. This is a problem that cannot be overcome with time.

    4. As a post-script to my last comment: Time is the enemy of Scientology, not a healing balm. As time goes on, it will continue to become more and more obvious that Scientology does not produce any of the "miracles" that Hubbard promised. Time is Scientology's enemy.

    5. I have mixed feelings about this. It does seem that Scientology has been losing ground in the internet age, when it depends so much on secrecy and the suppression of information. However, they have come back from the brink before.

      The FBI raid and conviction of the founder's wife ought to be a crushing blow to any cult, yet they not only recovered but won religious tax exemption from the very same government that raided them. So also with their weathering of the Titchbourne and McPherson cases.

      My concern is that their monetary assets are sizable enough to ride out the storm.

    6. @Anonymous
      Re: Mixed feelings

      While you are right, the Church of Scientology has survived what might have been crushing blows before. However, this time, I believe it is a whole different kettle of fish.

      Scientology is, in essence, a secret society or mystery religion. It gains its "power", if you will, from the fact that it claims to know the secrets of the universe which are so powerful that they must only be exposed to highly advanced members who have been carefully prepared to receive the information. It was attractive because it claimed its most advanced members have "super OT powers".

      In all previous troubles, Scientology's mystical knowledge and "super powers" have, for the most part, remained untouched. Yes, one bit of their "OT data" was released but did not receive much exposure and the church's denials were given some credit.

      This time, it is different. Every single "OT level" has been leaked and even verified. Every lie by Hubbard has been exposed and proven to be a lie. Scientology's advanced "OTs" have been shown to be without any special powers or abilities. Scientology's amazing "solutions" have been proven to not work. This time their secrets have been completely exposed.

      How can a secret society survive when their secrets have all been exposed and proven bogus? It can't. That's why I contend that, no matter how much money they have, Scientology has no viable future as a secret society.

    7. So long as spiritual-innocence appears in the form of a human-being (as a mental void coupled with an emotional predisposition to 'believe') scientology will exist in the world. The upshot is such mental voids are being taken to task via the vast network of information called the internet. Leaving such emotional predispositions less vulnerable to violation. Which renders the future of scientology (as a religion, philosophy, or secular doctrine, dim).

  5. "Time is Scientology's enemy." That's brilliant.

    I add my voice of gratitude for Emma and ESMB. A magnificent history is yet to be right: The History of the Critical Opposition to the Church of Scientology.

    Foremost among heroes are those who were the targets of vicious resprisal in the 1990s taken by OSA against the heroic figures like Lawrence Wollersheim, Arnie Lerma, and Dennis Ehrlich from ars.

    Emma and ESMB have made a huge contribution. She can't be praised enough.

  6. I really like ESMB (although I'm not a member) and felt touched reading the lovely tributes to Emma on her "leaving" thread, but felt the same as you. She's done enough and a lot, and passing the torch makes perfect sense.

    She filled a needed gap and not only were ex-members lives changed by having a place where they could go and feel supported and heard, but the profound insights by some of the exes (like Veda and Gadfly and many others) I found breathtaking, beyond anything I've read from a journalist or in any one person's book. Like your insights Bill, some things only come out after having lived it, then thought about it for years, and then through interacting with other ex-members to try to figure out what it all means. ESMB is great for that.

    ESMB is where I really learned to feel empathy for and like ex-scientologists because it is where they reveal their experiences and thoughts so openly.

    Even though I'm primarily a joker, and post mostly on Tony's blog only, I feel the vulnerability of others and when people post on ESMB, they often talk about things passionately and honestly. They sometimes have insights right there, just through communicating with each other.

    For the first timer's telling their story, the serial format is better than trying to write it on their own. When trying to write a book or a memoir, some people get too caught up in structure or are self-conscious whereas the blog thread format sets people free to just write from their hearts and minds, knowing that their experience has meaning and it doesn't matter if they aren't the best writers, or English isn't their first language. There experiences in Scientology are unique and important as is the process they are going through now to heal from it.

    The other thing I like is the freedom ex-members have to talk about anything on their minds. It doesn't have to be a news story or important, just whatever they are compelled or inspired to talk about.

    I was appreciative of the risk people took, knowing that people from OSA were probably "writing up" people, trying to figure out who they were. Of course, what Emma had to go through was probably nightmarish on a whole different level, and feeling tethered to it, while others could just come and go for long stretches.

    Anyway Emma, if you're reading this, thank you for starting ESMB, fairly patrolling the trolls or people who got a little too carried away. Hopefully a team will step up to continue the service or it will be absorbed by other people.

    And thanks for the tribute to her Bill.


  7. I partially agree with Presto; I could easily see Scientology becoming a holding company with a religious subset - after all that's what they are right now.

    I've noticed that talk of Scientology is drying up on the Internet, probably because the "church" is keeping a screamingly low profile....not much is going on.

    1. Re: Talk of Scientology drying up.

      If you look at what Miscavige spends "his" money on, you will see that his focus is entirely aimed at current members. He spends nothing on promotion to the outside world. Everything he spends money on is done solely with the aim of impressing current Scientologists or countering any negative information that might get through his "Great Wall of Thought-Control".

      He does not care one bit about really expanding the Church of Scientology. He only wants to protect his money siphon of existing suckers.

      The fact that every Big Bogus Event and every magazine, flier and newsletter gets exposed and ridiculed means he keeps restricting access to all those things more and more.

      And so Scientology disappears from the public view, becoming increasingly encysted, private and hidden.

      Yes, as you say, the "church" is keeping a screamingly low profile.

    2. Are you sure that Miscavige isn't promoting Scientology beyond its current base? There's its partnership with the Nation of Islam, and promotion of Hubbard's material in black christian churches, as well as expansion in new countries like India and Taiwan, if I'm not mistaken.

    3. Scientologists are promoting Scientology. For instance, as I understand it, Rev. Alfreddie Johnson, Jr. was probably the one responsible for the Nation of Islam connection. The point is, Miscavige did not have to spend "his" money in that endeavor.

      What I'm talking about is that David Miscavige won't spend a penny promoting Scientology outside of its current base. If it looks like he is, he is only fundraising for his "Planetary Dissemination" scam. He puts on a show for Scientologists so they think he's disseminating. But once he collects the money, he keeps it -- there are none of the promised "huge advertising campaigns" that Scientologists were told they were funding.


  8. It could take decades of hiding from the public, but then they would have a major comeback via advertising themselves as they did in the 80's reviving interest in their tech, and any evidence against them will have been removed for infringing copyright.

    1. This is just not going to happen, in my opinion. Here's why.

      Scientology is a "secret society". Their "draw" is that they have secrets that no one else knows. They know secrets that allows them to do "miraculous" things. Only the most advanced Scientologists are privy to the highly confidential levels that give them "god-like powers" but would kill anyone less advanced.

      And, now, pretty much everyone knows this is complete bull.

      People may forget. But if Scientology "comes back" in a few decades, all the "secret" information in the archives will be rediscovered by the curious and few will be fooled.

      When all its secrets have been exposed, a secret society is done. Its money can keep in inner core going, but it will not help it fool new people into becoming members.

  9. I am with Just Bill on this one. As soon as inner secrets of Scientology got exposed, mortal wound was inflicted, and they are unlikely to ever recover. Let me add some extra reasons why Scientology won't be treat in the future.

    In more traditional religions like Christianity it is easy to abstract away embarrassing facts. For example, many early Christians believed that return of Christ and the end of the world was imminent. Like, any day now. This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled, Matthew 24:34 . The fact that this never happened is, however, easy to explain away: since God resides outside of time, one second is the same as million years to him. Or Jesus meant something else when he said 'generation'. Or whatever.

    Lack of answered prayers is even easier to rationalize: since God knows best, he always has a good reason to not do something or to not help someone.

    However, since Scientology promises so much, how are you going to rationalize the fact that no real OT was ever produced? Since Scientology promises tangible results all over the place, redefining a few verses or saying that God knows best is not going to work. Scientology can only exist in total and absolute secrecy and in our networked world it will evaporate like vampire in sunlight.

    And how are you going to abstract away mythology like Xenu incident? The story of Jesus is vague enough that everyone can interpret the stuff the way one likes. A divine figure sent to Earth to save people? Lamb sacrificed at the altar of a cruel God? It's whatever you want. But how the hell you do that with Galactic lord Xenu and exploding volcanoes? I guess some of it could be metaphors for overpopulation, but it reads like a bad Sci-Fi (which it is) so people are unlikely to accept it.


  10. Another reason why Scientology isn't likely to withstand the test of time is the way it treats families. The best way to ensure future of your religion is to encourage having lots and lots of children and indoctrinate them. It is rather hard to persuade adult person to follow certain path or to change his opinion, but young people can be hooked on emotional level rather easily.

    I don't think Christianity was all that family friendly at first If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters--yes, even his own life--he cannot be my disciple Luke 14:26 . However Paul (who, I think was more important for establishing Christianity than Christ) knew which side is his bread buttered and wrote If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. 1 Timothy 5:8


  11. (continued)

    And what does Scientology do? Not only they treat Sea Org members, their most loyal servants, like crap, they also force abortions! Talk about shooting yourself in the foot with a howitzer. That alone demonstrates to me that DM has no real plan of expanding the cult. He is trying to squeeze every drop from current members he can but is too unimaginative how to update Scientology to something that can attract new people.


  12. I totally understand why people like Emma and Jeff Hawkins decide one day they have simply had enough. I admire those two people very highly, and others who have put much effort and personal risk into revealing the monster.

    I think for Jeff Hawkins he felt a real responsiblity to reveal the truth, after spending so many years working to persuade people to join.

    But there comes a time when ex-Scientologists just want to get on with their lives, and put the whole thing behind them. It makes perfect sense to me.

    I used to comment on xenutv's site a lot, then that quietened up as Mark Bunker started working on his movie, then Jeff Hawkins came along and I had some amazing conversations with Scientologists on his blog-site, then he "retired" so to speak, then Tony Ortega came along with his almost non-stop Scientology reporting.

    There are always people willing to step up to the plate to fight the abuses of Scientology, which is why time will not heal the damage that has been inflicted on the church over the last 4 years or so. Not everyone is going to pack up and go home. Someone will now always be watching, and the children of Scientologists will not be so easily inculcated - the kids of the 60s/70s/80s did not have the Internet to educate them to the dangers of their parent's beliefs.

    Well done Emma - enjoy the rest of your life, you deserve it.


  13. JB you really hit the nail on the hed here:

    Every single "OT level" has been leaked and even verified. Every lie Hubbard told has been exposed and proven to be a lie. Scientology's advanced "OTs" have been shown to be without any special powers or abilities. Scientology's amazing "solutions" have been proven to not work. This time their secrets have been completely exposed.

    How can a secret society survive when their secrets have all been exposed and proven bogus? It can't.

  14. Is this the end then? I hope not.

    1. For me? No. I'll be here to answer questions and I think I will have more commentary as things go on.


  15. Did you hear Marty has a book coming out soon, in a week or two? "What's Wrong with Scientology". That should be interesting. Hard to imagine how he could add more to the conversation, but hope springs eternal.

    1. @Squash Lady

      Hmmm. "What's Wrong with Scientology". From Marty, I expect a ton of justifications and finger-pointing while running fast in the opposite direction of the real answer.

      Seriously, his agenda is to "rehabilitate" Hubbard's image and to make Scientology "acceptable" to the "wog" world.

      What he will come up with for what is "wrong" will be that Hubbard and Scientology are too good and too effective and that they "attracted 'Enemies'" that attacked and perverted the True Tech.

      As always, he will explain away, ignore and cover up the fact that Scientology has never delivered on any of Hubbard's grand promises. As always, he will justify, ignore and cover up Hubbard's lies, abuse, crimes and fraud and will tell everyone that "it was Miscavige".

      While he won't come up with what really was wrong with Scientology, you can be sure he will demonstrate exactly what is wrong with Scientology. Scientology is all about lies, non-confront, lies, cover-ups and lies.

  16. Bill, do you know more about The Master, the movie about some guru cult leader? Some say that the script was inspired by Hubbard's life.


    1. I know only what you know. As I understand it, it was originally based loosly on Hubbard and early Scientology from the 1950s but that's pretty common knowledge.

      If I were to guess about it today, I'd guess that it has been modified considerably from those roots and now has much less similarity to Hubbard and Scientology.

      I'm thinking that because, first, Scientology still does have some influence in Hollywood and, second, that's what happens to movie scripts anyway.

      We'll just have to wait and see.


  17. Come on...Tom and Katie, Splitsville....comments?

    1. Katie is doing it right. This is fantastic news.

  18. Speaking of endings, Katie Holmes has just filed for divorce and is seeking sole custody of Suri, their daughter. Cruise, they say, was surprised by the move. Really?

    Tom Cruise is an OT VII. As an OT he can supposedly communicate over long distances using his mind (telepathy), perform remote viewing (extrasensory perception or clairvoyance), influence matter, energy, space and time as a spirit (telekinesis or psycho kinesis), conduct supernatural healing, predict future events (precognition), remember past lives, and deal with ghosts and haunting. So why didn't he see this coming?

    1. Yeah, let's hear how he, a powerful OT, "was blindsided".

    2. Does Tom have any idea how ridiculous this “blindsided” statement makes him look? Here he is, a high-level Scientologist with all kinds of incredible psychic power, and he is shocked and surprised when his wife asks for a divorce. Years ago I remember reading about a well-known psychic who was flabbergasted when told that her business manager had been embezzling from her for years. Reminds me of that headline we’ll never see, “Psychic wins lottery!”

      But seriously, does Tom have any idea how ridiculous the “blindsided” statement makes him look? Or is he so delusional that he is incapable of looking at himself objectively?

    3. Scientologists are trained and indoctrinated to not look at things objectively. There is no objectivity in Scientology. They are not able to see things from any viewpoint but the artificial "Ron viewpoint" of Scientology.

      But we are not surprised that Tom was blindsided. The rest of the world could very plainly see how very, very miserable Katie looked. We could see her getting more miserable with every passing month. We could easily deduce the problem -- Scientology.

      But no Scientologist could make that observation and that deduction because "Scientology is wonderful and makes everyone happy!"

      We are all so happy that Katie and Suri are out of that nightmare.

  19. Rupert Murdoch slams Scientology. I never thought that I'd agree with the old SOB about anything but that day has dawned.



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