Awesome Scientologists

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DRE

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Post Mon Jan 19, 2009 7:06 pm

Awesome Scientologists

We all hear about Scientologists who hurt others. Steal their money, fill their heads full of crazy ideas, in general ruin their lives. I thought it might be a good idea for us to also discuss the ones who have helped us, if any exist. The people in the church who made their religion look good, who lived their creed right, who made us consider whether Scientology was all bad even if only for a moment. Such people are the ones who keep Scientology existing, even with all its real and alleged sins. I have started this thread for anyone who wants to list such people.

The first example I will give is someone I can't name. In 2006 I began in-depth research of Scientology and what it was like to be one. I saw all the articles about people describing how Scientologists are "brainwashed", "conditioned to think and behave the same way", "taught to lie", and so on. This really bothered me. It was hard to see how a religion could do such a thing to thousands of diverse people around the world. I could not understand it. Then I came across a blog on Myspace, Facebook, or some similar site. I don't remember where it was exactly, I'm ashamed to say. I think I got there through belief.net. Some thread on their message boards about rock music.

Anyway, on their profile under religion the blogger identified themselves as a "Scientologist but not like Tom Cruise. He annoys the fuck out of me." They discussed music, movies, and other topics but nothing religious. There were no links to official CoS websites or to critical websites and if critics were discussing this person's religion with them, I didn't see it. That one statement about Scientology was the only thing on the whole blog that even mentioned the term.

I have to say it woke me up. It made me realize Scientologists can have the same thoughts as all of us. As a Christian, I have been annoyed by the picture prejudiced preachers like Pat Robertson and Fred Phelps paint of the religion. It has annoyed me even more that some people have told me I shouldn't call myself Christian because I don't have the same views as Robertson and Phelps. I was wondering if Scientologists really did all think alike and this blogger showed me they didn't. They even went through quandaries about their faith, like me. I wish I could remember their name and where their words could be found. I can't even find the blog on Google today. Oh well, part of me thinks it best they remain anonymous.

The second good example of a Scientologist I found the same day on the Internet. This person I can identify. She posts on belief.net as "fluffygirl" and has also spoken about her faith on other forums. Her website is http://www.claireswazey.com/ She is a Freezoner who practices Scientology outside the church and has spoken up about it in numerous media. It's partly because of her that Freezoners have their own forum on Belief.net. She has quite a record of criticizing the CoS and conflicting with them. Her website shows she believes in Scientology despite this and also holds other diverse interests. If you think all Scientologists are the same and none can criticize their church while still finding value in the teachings, I dare you to look at this lady. I am proud to say she has taught me more about the faith than anyone else I have met online.
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:26 am

I will add the following famous members of the main Scientology church to the list. They are all masters of their chosen craft, in my opinion, and from what I have observed, good people. I think they deserve good will. I appreciate the humor, bravery, and grace they have shown their critics and fans before the media. Their arts are great entertainment and have sponsored much charity in fact and intent. May they never cease giving their inspiration to the world.

- Erika Christensen.
- Giovanni Ribisi.
- Catherine Bell.
- Leah Remini.
- Angelo Pagan.
- John Travolta.
- Kelly Preston.
- Lynsey Bartilson.
- Juliette Lewis.
- Jason Lee.
- Ethan Suplee.
- Jason Dohring.
- Kirstie Alley.
- Paul Haggis.
- Deborah Rennard.
- Taron Lexton.
- Marisol Nichols.
- Dane Christensen.
- Katie Holmes.
- Tom Cruise (he was off the list when he was a crazy evangelizer, but because of recent changes he's made in his public image, I'm giving him a chance to earn his place back; he better not blow it!).
- Isaac Hayes.

If there are other Sci celebs who are equally worthy, I invite their fans to post their names.
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Holden Caulfield

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:12 pm

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, although I disagree with you almost completely.

1. I honestly, I don't want Scientology and it's teachings to exist. Had it not been protected by a sheath of dogma and cloaked as a religion, the logic fallacies of LRH's works would simply make them pass into history.

2. most of the artists you mentioned on your list are low-educated B-actors, save for two true acting talents, Ribisi and Lewis, and a brilliant writer, Haggis and musician, Hayes.

You are, in any case, attributing their success to Scientology, as all scientologists do, when Scientology has nothing to do with it.
"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth."
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Anonymous9104

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:33 pm

Holden Caulfield wrote:Thanks for sharing your thoughts, although I disagree with you almost completely.

1. I honestly, I don't want Scientology and it's teachings to exist. Had it not been protected by a sheath of dogma and cloaked as a religion, the logic fallacies of LRH's works would simply make them pass into history.

2. most of the artists you mentioned on your list are low-educated B-actors, save for two true acting talents, Ribisi and Lewis, and a brilliant writer, Haggis and musician, Hayes.

You are, in any case, attributing their success to Scientology, as all scientologists do, when Scientology has nothing to do with it.


HC, I concur.
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:36 pm

I don't attribute their success to Scientology. I attribute it to their own talents. They happen to believe in Scientology, and I believe they are good people. I'm sure that even without their religion they'd still do great in life. Sorry for the confusion.

This thread is supposed to be about Scientologists who have meant good things to people. The fact that they have done so is not necessarily because of their religion. It may be in spite of it, because of who they are.

I did not become a fan of any one of the celebs I mentioned because of their religion. I honestly admired their acting, writing, etc. Then I went to their IMDb message boards and found them being mocked by anti-Scis who assumed they were corrupting shills because they were Scientologists. I did some research and found they didn't fit their assigned negative mold. I couldn't tell that to the anti-Scis- I tried and they wouldn't listen, even when I displayed the evidence- but it did not matter. I felt justified in looking up to the celebrities as artists and people, and that was all I wanted. They retained their place in my admiration list, even though I didn't like their church.

If you want me to go into detail on why they don't fit the mold, I will. But if you'd rather keep your biased view of Scientology and think they're all the same, I give you that right.
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Anonymous9104

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:42 pm

DRE wrote:I don't attribute their success to Scientology. I attribute it to their own talents. They happen to believe in Scientology, and I believe they are good people. I'm sure that even without their religion they'd still do great in life. Sorry for the confusion.

This thread is supposed to be about Scientologists who have meant good things to people. The fact that they have done so is not necessarily because of their religion. It may be in spite of it, because of who they are.

I did not become a fan of any one of the celebs I mentioned because of their religion. I honestly admired their acting, writing, etc. Then I went to their IMDb message boards and found them being mocked by anti-Scis who assumed they were corrupting shills because they were Scientologists. I did some research and found they didn't fit their assigned negative mold. I couldn't tell that to the anti-Scis- I tried and they wouldn't listen, even when I displayed the evidence- but it did not matter. I felt justified in looking up to the celebrities as artists and people, and that was all I wanted. They retained their place in my admiration list, even though I didn't like their church.

If you want me to go into detail on why they don't fit the mold, I will. But if you'd rather keep your biased view of Scientology and think they're all the same, I give you that right.


ahaha that's funny, my biased view... and HC's biased view... funny funny
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:48 pm

Are you trying to say I'm biased as well? Yes, I am. I admit it. But at least I don't mock and ostracize people if they refuse to conform to my bias. I also am willing to seek out, hear, and accept evidence that contradicts what I might think.

I'm sorry for my attitude. It's just that to me, people can be Scientologists and still be inspiring, still be good. I get why that is hard for some to understand. I get why you want to shout me down. But I'm still going to speak my mind. I thought I could do that here.
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 6:12 pm

As individuals, yes, Scientologists can be inspirational. I happen not to find anyone on your list inspirational, per se. I do admire Neil Gaiman and Jeffery Tabor.

What is interesting with these lists whenever they are wheeled out is the lack of scientists, philosophers, public intellectuals, and legal minds. Trained thinkers who matter in shaping society.

I see a lot of moderately talented actors, who really haven't been in anything exceptional, outside, I dunno... GREASE. (I did like Eyes Wide Shut)
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 7:21 pm

Oh, and Isaac Hayes had some funky, funky jams waaaaaay before he was a Scientologist.
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 7:56 pm

The more I think about the Scientology celebrity list meme, the more I'm annoyed by this.

Lists like this and the whole idea of the Celebrity Center encourage the type of people who are impressed by fame itself, rather than what originated it, namely creativity.

I'm sorry, but looking at that list again, I'm just not seeing the relevance that scientology has to any of these people's accomplishments other than some crappy career choices. They aren't community leaders, they aren't known for any sort of charity work, they aren't thinkers. They are bland personalities that have made a go of it in a glossy profession. So what?

Where's the MLKs on your list? Or the Gandhis?
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Holden Caulfield

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:07 pm

gogogadget wrote:What is interesting with these lists whenever they are wheeled out is the lack of scientists, philosophers, public intellectuals, and legal minds. Trained thinkers who matter in shaping society.



Exactly my subtle point. That's because these trained thinkers are trained to think critically and Scientology won't have that. By ostracizing people who are trained scientifically in its beleif system, doctors, scientists, journalists, ect, by giving them numerous labels, Scientology will mostly appeal to people who lack that very training, and instead you have the B-list of young Hollywood celebs from sit-coms.
"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth."
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:13 pm

That's because these trained thinkers are trained to think critically and Scientology won't have that
.

Yep, it goes back to that fact that that philosophers, thinkers and scientists operate with the assumption that the world is largely unknown and worth exploring -- traits that are useful in an open free society.
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Anonymous9104

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:30 pm

gogogadget wrote:
That's because these trained thinkers are trained to think critically and Scientology won't have that
.

Yep, it goes back to that fact that that philosophers, thinkers and scientists operate with the assumption that the world is largely unknown and worth exploring -- traits that are useful in an open free society.



I concur
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:05 pm

Far as I can tell, Gadget, Scientologist MLKs and Gandhis don't exist. Or at least, they're not obvious in their presence. But IMO, people don't have to be inspiring on the level of MLK and Gandhi to be worthy of admiration. They can be mere everyday folk who do something well and act with a good moral code. IMO, everyone I listed is a person like that. Yeah, they aren't big movers in society. Who said they had to be?

You are right that none of those names excel in their craft because of Scientology. They just happen to be members of the faith, and people who I would want to see wind up in good circumstances should their church disintegrate for any reason. In the latter status, they are very far from alone.
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:12 pm

How do these listed people "act with a good moral code" to the point of being inspiring?
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:39 pm

I will admit I don't know for sure about their moral code. It's more a feeling I get about them from observing how they talk to the press and watching their films than it is anything else. They all have records of success on screen, taking on challenging roles and gaining critical acclaim, without falling prey to the pitfalls of celebrity such as drug addiction or becoming snobs. At least, they don't come across in their interviews as snobs. Other Scientologists, such as Jenna Elfman, do come across that way to me. The tabloids stay away from every name on that list, except the Cruises and Travoltas. Some of the names have used their celebrity to draw attention to charitable causes. I would like to believe they mean such stances, not that they're doing it out of a need for attention or a desire to be shills for something.

They also defy the negative stereotype of Scientologists as bubbleheaded cult members. Travolta is on record for telling people they don't need Scientology to feel good about themselves, Erika and Leah have friends outside the church, Isaac was okay with satire up until the end, and so on. They all keep a good humor before their fans and the press- Tom Cruise is the one exception and even he has fixed himself up recently. If you look them up on Wikipedia or IMDb, you can see they all have many accomplishments to their names. I want to believe they deserve their stations in life and have the character to be friends of mine should we ever meet. A good moral code is part of that.

IMO, just because someone's only a B movie actor or a director whose main work is in short films does not diminish them as a person. I haven't accomplished all that much in my life either. But I'm still worthy of honor, right?

You know what irritates me most about Scientology? This thread made me realize it. It's the way it subsumes people's identities. The trolls on IMDb who bash the celebrities I admire for being Scientologists don't even see the people they are. Others have trouble believing they would achieve their fame and success without their church. CoS fanatics, of course, would want them to believe that. And they shouldn't. Scientology's part of who these people are, but it's not the whole. I liked them before I knew what their religion was, and I would still like them even without it. They have proven themselves worthy of admiration to me, despite the fact their creed has serious drawbacks and I never wish to be part of it again. I want to believe they're as good as their accomplishments and the media make them seem.

Maybe they are. Maybe not. If someone here knows them as more than just a fan, perhaps they can be the ones to clear the air. Until then, I prefer to believe a good illusion instead of a bad one. I don't know for sure either is real. At least I can stay comfortable in my admiration with the good one.
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Anonymous9104

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:48 pm

It's more a feeling I get



OK, so it's a feeling you get...

Which if I remember correctly...

Isn't that low on the tone scale for the so called religion your trying to defend, pump up, etc, lend credence?


Maybe more rationale might serve you better.

Why aren't all the PRO scions responding to your post?

I wonder...

Well, maybe they will yet, we'll see.
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DRE

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:14 pm

Let's get something straight, Anon9104. It's not Scientology I care about lending credence or defending. It's people, individuals. Myself, celebrities I want to admire, others I want to call friends, etc. I want to feel the way I do about them without bringing a tone scale or a cult or anything like that into it. I want my feelings to be comfortable and honest, with no hidden agendas or shames. I want to like the people I do in spite of their religion's negatives. It's not hard to understand- at least not for me. And yet I still had to come here to sort it out in my mind. :?
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gogogadget

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:28 pm

I want to like the people I do in spite of their religion's negatives.


And you can(?). But I not sure what you're looking for here by posting that list; validation?
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Anonymous9104

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Post Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:39 pm

DRE wrote:Let's get something straight, Anon9104. It's not Scientology I care about lending credence or defending. It's people, individuals. Myself, celebrities I want to admire, others I want to call friends, etc. I want to feel the way I do about them without bringing a tone scale or a cult or anything like that into it. I want my feelings to be comfortable and honest, with no hidden agendas or shames. I want to like the people I do in spite of their religion's negatives. It's not hard to understand- at least not for me. And yet I still had to come here to sort it out in my mind. :?


I think by referring to Scientology as a cult in the Pro forum you might be bending the rules...

As for who you want to admire, I just got the impression you are kind of glorifying what I perceive as little known celebrity...

Not in any way all inclusive of the little man or average people who also might be scientologists...
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