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.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Understanding the "Scientologist Attitude"

As an inevitable result of the collapse of the Church of Scientology, there are lots of Scientology true believers appearing outside of the church.  There will be more.

This means that non-Scientologists are going to have a lot more exposure to the Scientology true believer's attitude and statements.

And this will, inevitably, be quite annoying.

To be specific, I am talking about the Scientology dogma and beliefs such as:
  • L. Ron Hubbard was a genius and was never wrong.
  • Scientology is perfect and can and will solve all the world's problems.
  • Scientology works 100% on 100% of the people.
  • Scientologists are homo novis, existing at a new, higher state of existence.
Disputing these "facts" with a Scientologist is a waste of time as they are forbidden from moving one inch from this ideology.

But there is something about this dogma and about Scientologists that you should know.  It may help you tolerate Scientologists a bit more.

They actually know that those precepts are not true.  If you can talk to many of them in a trusted, off-the-record environment, they will easily admit exactly that.

But any Scientologist, even outside the church, who wants to have the image of being a true Scientologist must echo these absolutes with never a visible question or doubt.

Scientologists must say these things, and they must believe these things and they must think these things, even though they really do know they are untrue.

It may be a bit difficult to understand how one can make oneself "think" something that one knows is untrue, but that is a skill that can be learned -- and Scientology does teach it.

Anyone who has studied Hubbard, especially any of Hubbard's lectures knows, without a doubt, that he was a story teller.  The stories he told were quite fanciful and wondrous.  Too wondrous.  I've never met an ex-Scientologist who was ever surprised to discover the proof that Hubbard was, let us say, less than honest in his story telling.

As for the perfection of Scientology and the all-encompassing solutions it allegedly provides -- every Scientologist has experienced the failures of Scientology technology.  Yes, every single Scientologist.

Sure, Scientologists have experienced some workable stuff, which is what convinced them to become Scientologists, but every single one of them has been promised "higher states of being" which, when they have "reached that level", be it Release, Clear or OT, has turned out not to exist.

Every Scientologist has experienced some "bad results" and "no results" from Scientology.  So every Scientologist knows that Scientology is definitely not 100% workable on 100% of the people, they know that it does not have all the solutions.

And they do know that they did not become homo novis.

While true believers still believe that Scientology is mostly good, they do know those absolutes, as stated above, are definitely not true.

But they will continue to make those statements as if it were true because believing, thinking and saying those things are required by Scientology dogma.  You cannot call yourself a true Scientologist unless you adhere to those requirements.

Which, by the way, explains why Scientologists are so strident and defensive about these precepts -- they know they aren't true and therefore they know they cannot prove them true, but they are still required to claim they are true.

And so Scientologists are very, very annoying and confusing to non-Scientologists.

Just understand that, beneath all those words and insistence on their dogma, all Scientologists really do know that these absolutes they are claiming for Scientology are not true.


  1. Great post, as usual. I have enjoyed reading this blog. This post reminds me of Scientology's circular logic, as follows: Scientology works. So, anything that does not work is not Scientology. Therefore, Scientology works. I have ridden this logical merry-go-round with a sibling of mine who recently disconeected from me. It doesn't seem to matter that he can explain away gross outpoints by saying "That's not Scientology". It seems that there have been many Scientologists who have been practicing 'non-Scientology' lately . . . .

  2. In this respect, how is Scientology different from other "fundamentalist" groups? Don't bible literalists doubt, at some level, the reality of heaven and hell, God's love, answered prayer, etc.? But their communities requires them to repeatedly declare their certainty, inside and outside of their group. Do the Mormon-spinoff polygamists really not know deep down that the infallibility of their "prophet" isn't as advertised? Scientology is different from other religious groups in a number of ways, but I can't see how this weird mental self-deception is unique to them. What do you think, Bill?

  3. Yes, that is the perfect definition for a technology you want to sell. If it works, it was that technology. If it fails, it wasn't that technology. Therefore, "that technology" is, by definition "always successful".

    That fact that Scientology always fails to bring any Scientologist to any of those promised "higher states" is explained away by that simple trick.

    Perfect. Scientology never succeeds, but, by this simple trick, it is "always successful". Can't beat that! What a sales gimmick!

  4. Cutting through the crap like a high-energy laz0r, Bill wins once again.

    I wonder if Marty Rathbun & the "Not-Freezone-Honest-Guv" crowd will ever have the intellectual honesty to take on board what you have to say...

  5. I always learn a lot from you posts.

    Thanks for explaining this to us non-scientologists.

  6. Lumping all Scientology true believers into one group doesn't match up to my experience.
    There is a NEW type coming out now - let's call them the Martyologists - who believe they can rescue their Church from DM. They don't want to destroy it, and some still seem to regard the anti-Church Scientologists as SPs and traitors.

    Those who came out earlier have a wide range of attitudes, depending on how much they have reintegrated with the wog world. Some for example not only want the Church gone they don't want it replaced, they see central organisation, not specifically DM, as the problem.

  7. Re: "Fundamentalist" Scientologists

    Good points. Belief systems that require adherents to ignore what they see, ignore what they personally experience, ignore what they know and only believe what they are told by someone else, are all similar in this respect to Scientology.

    I don't want to knock anyone's religion, but such belief systems don't seem very workable to me. In my opinion, no belief system should require such thought control and isolation from the real world.

  8. @David J Mudkips

    Thank you. I really want to hear from some true believers on what they think about this subject.

    Come on, Scientologists, speak up!

  9. @Hartley

    Yes, that really is an aspect of what I'm talking about. There are a lot of Scientologists who left the church and left the Scientology bubble. Some still want to practice some Scientology tech -- either in the FreeZone or elsewhere -- but they no longer are trying to convince anyone that they are still "true Scientologists".

    So they don't have to make all those ridiculous claims that I listed.

    But, as you point out, these new ex-churchies are different. They are, in some cases, trying to convince other Scientologists that they are still true Scientologists.

    So, despite their knowledge of the truth, they make the proper noises that all true Scientologists have to make: "Hubbard was perfect, Scientology is perfect, Scientology works, bla, bla, bla". And, yes, they do know it is BS.

    To know the truth, but continue to spout the lies is, by definition, hypocrisy. Since this is what the leadership of the Church of Scientology does every day, these actions by ex-churchies is just more of the same.

    You'd think people leaving the Church of Scientology would look for something better, and not the same old hypocrisy.

  10. Tis is the biggest nonsense I ever read about the dogma of Scientology. I'm one since 35 years and always was able to differentiate and also lots of my friends do. You're talking mainly about believers, fanatics that don't have a real understanding and those era in fact a minority, but have the biggest moutth!!!

  11. "Come on, Scientologists, speak up!"

    Thank you so much for pointing out to me that I am stupid, hypocritical, completely inferior and on top of it a liar and a fool.

    I appreciate being completely trashed.

    Very helpful and enlightening.

  12. @Robert

    Thanks for your comment, but you are being a bit vague about what you are talking about.

    What I said is actually what true Scientologists must believe and must say. You seem to dispute that.

    OK, so you are saying that you don't agree with those Scientology precepts, right? So you say to other Scientologists that Hubbard was a liar. You say to other Scientologists that Scientology doesn't work as promised. You say, as a Scientologist, that Release, Clear and OT are bogus.

    Yeah, right.

    If you did, you'd be declared a Suppressive Person. I know that, you know that. So be more precise, exactly what are you claiming? What are you arguing about?

  13. @Anonymous Scientologist

    Now where did I ever call you (or any Scientologist) "stupid"? Eh? Never did. Where did I use the word "inferior"? Hmmm? No matter how you read what I wrote, you can't get it to say "inferior". Same with "liar" and "fool".

    If you really wish to be insulted, I cannot stop you, but do not claim I insulted you!

    What I pointed out was merely what does exist in Scientology. Period. There were no insults in my article.

    If you feel insulted, you might rethink your belief system. If that belief system does not allow you to acknowledge what you know for yourself to be true, then maybe you need to look a little deeper at what you consider important.

  14. Just want to leave a quick comment...I find your blog posts fascinating, much more so than most of the other scientology related blogs on the net. I actually come away from reading them having learned something. This one was no different. Thanks for the blog.

  15. Bill;
    I am a Scientologist and I guess I feel I am a true Scientologist and one who understands the concepts of Hubbard's philosophy. By the standards of the true believers I am not a “good Scientologist”.

    Regarding your assumptions that all true Scientologists beleive:
    A. L. Ron Hubbard was a genius and was never wrong.
    B. Scientology is perfect and can and will solve all the world's problems.
    C. Scientology works 100% on 100% of the people.
    D. Scientologists are homo novis, existing at a new, higher state of existence.

    A. I do think Hubbard was a genius but he was wrong on more than one occasion and has even stated this himself.

    B. Scientology is not perfect. Hubbard never stated this. He said the technology was workable. He stated this on more than one occasion. I guess many Scientologists missed this. lol

    C. 100% on 100% not really. Sometimes the correct application is to not apply Scientology. Just let someone be, do, and have what they see fit. But one could argue that that is true Scientology. Lol

    D. Scientologists are homo novis. All of them, no way! Maybe some. But there are also non-Scientologists that are homo novis. Man is evolving.

    The problem with the fanatics is they read all of Hubbard at a monotone. They don’t apply the principles. The core principles of Scientology are the Axioms, Logics, Codes and Creeds. The subject to successfully and non-robotically applied takes some judgment, which is sadly missing in the C of S.

  16. @Anonymous Scientologist

    Thanks for the clarification. Yes, with that attitude, you definitely would be declared a Suppressive Person by the Church of Scientology. In other words, you think about things and make up your own mind. Glad to hear it.

  17. I think what you said in your last column is true, but is Scientology really that different in that respect than any other religion? (and I call Scientology a religion, even though I'm not a scientologist myself, because the U.S. government has called it one). I'm sure most Christians really don't believe the 'virgin birth' theory of Christ, but they have to say so in order to remain Christians.


  18. Re: Religion

    You can certainly think what you want on the subject, but I do not buy into the "Scientology is just like every other religion" idea. It simply isn't true.

    One could say that all religions require faith, and so are "all alike", but to make them "all alike" in your mind, you have to ignore every difference. That's kind of silly.

    Scientology promises specific results if you pay an exact sum of money and apply very specific techniques. That is exactly like many businesses, and unlike any religion. The fact that Scientology does not deliver these promised results is where the Scientologist's "faith" comes in -- they have faith "it works" even though it doesn't.

    You cannot say that any other religion does exactly those things -- specific results promised, set dollar amount paid, specific techniques applied for that "level". No, Scientology is not "just like every other religion". Not hardly.

  19. A note to "true believers": I have followed along on Just Bill's blog for some time now.

    Posting here will not get you any brownie points anywhere and in my opinion, Just Bill has little interest in anything that does not support his opinion. If you enjoy making posts and being demeaned or being made fun of, then by all means post here.

    Note his statement on the home page:

    "This is not an official site of the Church of Scientology. It is not authorized nor does it express official opinions or positions. Any trademarks are the property of the trademark holders.

    This blog contains opinions and commentary, if you don't like it, go somewhere else."

    The blog title "Ask the Scientologist" is deceptive and a a red herring. Just Bill regards most Scientologists as misguided people who need to be smacked upside the head.

    If you want to learn something new or participate in discussions, I think you will find Marty Rathbun's blog - - and Geir Isene's forum - a great deal more interesting and productive.

    At the very least, you will be able voice your own opinion without being instantly ridiculed or dismissed if your view disagrees with the topic.

    My experience with this blog is that Just Bill only welcomes opinions that agree with his own and jumps all over any criticism that others make of his posts with scathing and derisive assertions. He will no doubt disagree with this, as he feels he is completely rational and thus superior to others, unfortunately his focus is rather narrow, and restricted to demeaning points of view as he liberally applies tar and feather to anyone who makes the mistake of saying they are a Scientologist, no matter what their viewpoint is.

    Of course, he will argue that he NEVER said this, as he is VERY literal and frowns on anyone coming away from his works with an overall impression. He adores saying "I never said that," because he never used the exact phrase or word, therefore he is pristine, pure and very reasoned and you are deficient in understanding, reason, etc.

    Sorry Just Bill, but that's how I see it. Fire away, make my day.

  20. Once again an interesting and entertaining post!

    I guess the same phenomenon must be true of other extreme religious groups as well, young Earth creationists for instance. The rank and file may claim ignorance, but they must be aware that their interpretation runs against scientific knowledge. There are even "creation science" science-books, and some of those writing them have enough scientific knowledge to know that what they write is outright lies. I find it difficult to understand how someone find it so important that people believe something they know is false, to promote a religion that put emphasis on being truthful. At least scientology does not have a truthfulness-dogma.

  21. Bill,
    I had a question. Since I agree with you that reforming the Church of Scientology is probably a hopeless task, and since you seem to feel, like I do, that there is some value in Hubbard's
    discoveries, do you think that scientology activities outside the church, as as the freezone, are helpful or harmful? Thanks for your time.

  22. Dear Anonymous Scientologist who doesn't like my blog.

    You can believe what you want, about me, my blog, about Scientology, about everything. That's your right.

    I do, very much, object to anyone putting words in my mouth. If you "get an impression" but I never said it, then you might consider that "impression" is your own creation, and not mine.

    I say what I mean. Period. I have no hidden agenda or opinion. What you see is what you get.

    By the way, I have never "demeaned or being made fun of" anyone in this blog. This is another of your creations that does not exist in reality. Do you think discussion and debate are "demeaning"? Is simple disagreement "demeaning"? What the heck definition of demeaning are you using?

    I have been a Scientologist. I know many Scientologists. I think quite well of Scientologists in general. Please do not put words in my mouth about that. I have defended Scientologists and defended their right to believe as they wish from the very start. When you, or anyone, claims I have another opinion, it makes me mad.

    If there are problems with the logic, evidence, results and facts of Scientology, that should be pointed out and not covered up. That has always been my position.

    If there are problems with the logic, evidence, results and facts of Scientology, it should be people like you who do the hard work to expose and correct these things. But you true believers won't face the facts, so someone else has to.

    And you get upset when it happens. I believe your upset comes because you know it's your job and you aren't doing it. Instead, you cover up the bad results and no results, the lies -- instead of working to fix things and make Scientology something honestly good.

    I agree with you about one thing. You don't like what I say, you should go somewhere else.

  23. @Morris

    I can't say one way or the other about the Freezone. It all depends on what they do and how they do it.

    I think that there certainly might be good things that could come out of Scientology's technology. But someone has to make that happen.

    As far as I can tell, there is much less harm coming from the Freezone than from the church. That bodes well.

  24. "It should be people like you who do the hard work to expose and correct these things. But you true believers won't face the facts, so someone else has to."

    Little problem here. I'm not in the C of S and have not been for nigh on twenty years. Hell if I am going to do that. Of course you are welcome to go in there and set things right, after all you are in the same boat as I am. Should be interesting.

  25. Dear Anonymous Scientologist who hates my blog.

    You misunderstood. I wan't talking about the Church of Scientology. Why would I want you to fix it? I don't want anybody to fix it.

    You can either work to correct Scientology (not the church) or not as you see fit. However, because you call yourself a Scientologist, the flaws of Scientology are your responsibility; the lies of Scientology are your responsibility; the failures of Scientology are your responsibility.

    All you seem to be doing is complaining when someone else points out those flaws, lies, bad results and no results -- but you are not doing anything about it. Why aren't you exposing these flaws?

    No, true Scientologists toe the party line, "all of Scientology is wonderful and perfect". Bah!

  26. "However, because you call yourself a Scientologist..."

    Excuse me, but when did I call myself a Scientologist?

    You are reading things that are not there. And how the hell do you know what I do anyway? Mighty presumptuous.

    Nope. You read my post. You jumped to a conclusion because you think that only a "true believer" would say something like that.

    I've got news for you, there isn't much likelihood that a "true believer" would even visit your blog. After all, they would be declared suppressive. So who the hell are you writing to? Me? Some angry ex? Someone who is already online and reading up things who is definitely not a true believer?

    You know the saying... there's three fingers pointing back...

    Now don't forget to get the last word in and make sure that it thoroughly puts me in my place.

  27. Seems like you hit a few sore spots with this one, Bill. Keep up the great work! Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

  28. What mily said!


  29. Dear Anonymous Scientologist who hates my blog and is now claiming not to be a Scientologist.

    I really do admire how (*not*)Scientologists avoid answering my questions, avoid the thread, divert and sidetrack what we're talking about. I guess I missed that course when I was in Scientology. It really does seem to be the hallmark of (*not*)Scientologists when they post on various forums, including this one.

    Anyone reading your pro-Scientology posts knows you are a true believer Scientologist, but if you want to pretend otherwise, I'm good with that.

    Please feel free to post again, it would be nice if you addressed the points I raised when you do (but I guess you won't).

    And, I must say, if you want to continue to accuse me of "intending" things I never said, of "thinking" things I never thought and of saying things that are, in fact, the opposite to what I have actually said -- I'd prefer you just skip it. That sort of thing is a trick that has been tried many, many times and hasn't worked yet.

    Thanks for playing.

  30. @Mily

    Thanks! Yes I did have a very nice Thanksgiving.

  31. Hmmm... Read what I wrote. I didn't say anything that was "pro" Scientology. Didn't say anything "anti" either. But I suppose you can interpret it that way if I don't jump in and yell hurray, that's showing them!

    You made a point earlier on your blog that bashing the hell out of Scientologists would not be effective. Obviously you believe that what you wrote in this article should be very palatable to them. But honestly, I winced at how your wrote your article and I don't even give a shit one way or another.

    It's probably a moot point anyway, judging from what you've already written on the blog, and from what I have read on other forums, there's not much chance of any die-hard Scientologist visiting anyway because they wouldn't want to be shunned or kicked out.

    As far as your erroneous conclusion that I am a Scientologist, yes, I once did some Scientology courses a long time ago but as far as I know that certainly doesn't mean I'm a Scientologist. It doesn't make me an ex-Scientologist either as I never pursued it beyond a few courses. It's really a stretch to say so. But hey, if that's what you want to believe...

  32. Dear Anonymous "I'm not a Scientologist" who hates my blog

    Like I said, I'm good with whatever you want to pretend. But that doesn't mean you can fool me.

    I find this very interesting: You objected to my blog because it wasn't pro-Scientology enough and you pointed to sites that were quite pro-Scientology. That's a true believer talking.

    And I referred to you as a Scientologist from the start, which you responded to without objection. Now, all that makes sense, but then I mentioned responsibility and suddenly you are "not a Scientologist" and are completely disinterested in Scientology, took a few courses, no agenda.

    Yeah, right.

    Well, nice talking with you.

  33. Interesting post, Bill. And interesting responses, but I'm not too surprised why some are up in arms since people can easily misread your intent. However, I wonder why this repeat poster is so angry with you and accusing you of demeaning Scientologists. There's this feeling of vehement dislike for you, not just what you say.

    I've read every one of your posts and some of the lively discussions that have ensued, and as you've said, you have never demeaned, insulted, ridiculed or silenced any poster. All you've done is disagreed strongly with people like this poster who put words in your mouth.

    Otherwise you are civil to those who disagree with you and I've seen you concede when someone has made a valid point.

    This person is blowing spoke and trying to stir up something. It's unpleasant and it's not earning them any brownie points.

  34. Scientology is great. I like it!

  35. Thanks for the support. I appreciate it.

  36. I must say, this is one the most interesting blogs about scientology's "inside" thinking.

    Keep up the good work!

  37. I think things can get confusing, not knowing which Anonymous person is whom. Perhaps, for continuity sake, the posters could pick a psuedonym, such as Anonymous1 or something silly like omnom.

    It doesn't prevent someone from being sneaky and signing as another, but hopefully if the original poster were following the conversation, they could point that out.

    Anyway, I like reading the discussion. The topic I've found interesting of late is the Scientologists (CoS) vs. Scientologists (Independent) vs. Scientologists (Freezone) vs. Anonymous vs. Those With No Affiliation vs. Who Knows Whom Else.

    Keep up the good work, Bill, and keep up the good work "disagreers". It keeps us all honest. Just keep in mind that the few Anonymous commentators that said or implied they were Scn may not be the same person who says they are not. Or it may be the same person who is trying to introduce confusion purposely. Who knows - stranger things have happened.

  38. When I was in, I still remember reading Hubbard's book, "The Problems Of Work". Sure enough, it had absolutely nothing to do with the workforce. One doctrine stressed in the book is the doctrine of the stable datum. The book states that any time we are confused by anything, a stable datum is required to eliminate any confusion.

    Many scientologists use what Hubbard and later Miscavige has spoon-fed them as a stable datum. The problem is, it doesn't matter if it's right or wrong, as long as it's stable.

    My belief is that if something doesn't work, find something that does. Most people in the church are will not do that as long as they have this "stable datum". This is what I feel is true insanity.

  39. You do an amazing job. Thanks for all your hard work. I know that many people have woken up as a result of your clarity, honesty and ability to articulate the truth.

  40. Happy Holidays Bill!


  41. Thanks Rachel! Same at you and everyone else who reads AskTheScientologist. It has been a good year, hasn't it?

  42. Bumping an old comment thread because I didn't feel like this was sufficiently addressed in the above discussion:

    The core difference between Scientology and most (not all) traditional religions is falsifiability. Religions succeed when they cannot be falsified: make claims about the spiritual nature of an event, and you're safe from pesky logic.

    Scientology's problem is the same as that of the Mormons: it makes falsifiable claims. When either religion claims X is absolutely true, and X is something any person can go investigate for themselves, the religion is on shaky ground.

    Whether it's the magical powers attributed to OTs, or the genetic heritage of Native Americans, making claims that can be disproved by evidence is a dangerous proposition for a religion.

    As an atheist, I have no real interest in defending the more mainstream religions, but I can't argue with the success of their methodology: only make claims that cannot be addressed by evidence. Claim that believers go to heaven after they die, because nobody can check up on that; *never* claim that believers will be able to levitate cars with their minds, because everyone can check up on that.

  43. Re: Falsifiability (nice word!)

    You make a good point, that certainly is a major weakness of Scientology: They make very, very specific claims, they say everyone can attain these results (if they pay enough and "go up the levels"), and then ... nothing. Anyone can look at the general population of Scientologists, and especially all the "OTs" and see that those promised results never happened.

    Perhaps that's the difference between a successful religion (one that survives) and groups like Scientology.


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