Published courtesy of STAND (Scientologists Taking Action Against Discrimination), by a STAND blogger who explains why he loves being a Scientologist.
Why do we read the news or put it on the tube, turn on the radio while we drive or have it fed to us on the internet? Why do we sign up for special “Newsletters” or requests “for more information” or talk over the fence to our neighbors? We want to be informed, we want to be in the know. We want the information so that we can understand the world around us. None of us can be everywhere at all times, see all, know all. We depend upon others to keep us informed. How is traffic, can I get there on time, are the markets okay, should I sell, should I buy? Rain, shine? The people who give us this information are our “sources.”
But what happens when our sources are corrupt or misinformed themselves? What happens when the reporter tells you the freeway is clear when it’s really backed up? Or worse, that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction when it doesn’t. We act correctly based on the data we have, but in the end, if we have wrong data, we fail in our purpose.
There is also the resulting confusion. You get on the freeway that is said to be open and moving and it takes 10 minutes to clear the on-ramp. You feel disoriented, you doubt yourself and your decisions. It’s far worse sending your neighbor’s son to war for reasons that turned out to be lies. And when you get into other important aspects of your life, like finance, the confusion can be deafening. Inflation—is it good or is it bad? What investments should I make? Derivatives?? Who among us can define what they actually are? How about insurance—how many of us have read the 20 pages of disclaimers and exemptions? And what about your kids’ educations? There are so many varying point of views you can just spin in the conflicting “information.” At the end of any given day, how much of what we have heard or seen did we not understand? At the end of a week, are we less confused or more? At the end of a year…?
Scientologists have quite a few weapons against this confusion. They are not secret weapons. In fact, to start with, there is one in the name Scientology itself. The word Scientology means “knowing how to know.” If you’re a news buff or an information addict, you’ve got to like that, right? How do “I know” what I’ve been told is true? Well, knowing HOW to know, would be where you’d start, right?
We Scientologists have some very cool tools to help us make sense of the news and information we receive.
I can’t speak for all Scientologists, just myself, but I would guess many use these same tools.
The first tool in my Scientology toolkit is from a wonderful article written by L Ron Hubbard called “Personal Integrity.”
“What is true for you is what you have observed yourself. And when you lose that, you have lost everything.
What is personal integrity? Personal integrity is knowing what you know.…
“And not necessarily maintaining a skeptical attitude, a critical attitude or an open mind—not necessarily maintaining these things at all—but certainly maintaining sufficient personal integrity and sufficient personal belief and confidence in self and courage that we can observe what we observe and say what we have observed.”—L. Ron Hubbard
Now when you apply that to the news cycle and the sources of news and keep on applying it, you start to become a pretty sharp cookie. If the weatherman is wrong, you notice it—you don’t doubt yourself. If the business reporter says something that doesn’t pan out, you put him on your naughty list. And if your local scribe describes an event that you have firsthand knowledge of, in a false or fake way, he just gets ignored from there on until he proves himself to be responsible with the truth. You don’t doubt your observation. You may go back and look again and ensure you are really seeing what you are seeing, but you don’t doubt and become confused.Another tool at our disposal is a body of knowledge called Study Technology. You can take a free course on the subject online. This is all about comprehension and the ability to apply what you’ve just learned. Whether it is the spoken or written word, can you comprehend exactly what you are being told and then put it into application? Being of the mindset to put anything you hear into application makes you a little dangerous to lie to. People begin to notice that you work things out quickly, try them out and don’t just accept anything they have to say. When you try to apply some of the junk spit out by the media with this information under your belt, it becomes obvious when they know what they are talking about and when they don’t. Another point is you stop being confused by useless information that does not work out in real life. You just let it go or file it in your trivia section.
After Study Technology, the next tool is Investigation Technology. Again, you can take a course on it for free online. (Look at us just giving all our “secrets” away!) This is about how to analyze information. Does the information add up to the opinion being expressed or are there facts missing? Do you have to make assumptions about the data you were given for it all to add up? I could go on, but the course is free so you should just do it yourself.
There are more tools available in Scientology that I can use, but I think this gives you a pretty good idea of what I am talking about.
With all these tools, reading the newspaper can get a little comical if not sad. You take a position on what you are being told rather than just accepting it because it’s in the New York Times or announced on the 10 o’clock news. You stop being a parrot of miscellaneous facts and start owning the information. You decide if it is true and start aligning it with other information or observations you already have.
If you read an article, you notice the opinion as opinion and the facts as facts and can keep them separate. You can even start peeking into the future a little bit, predicting how the event will play out. But mainly you can think with the information you are being given.
When you watch a documentary, you tend to evaluate and understand rather than being led to an opinion by emotional music and hypnotic photos that fixate your attention and cause you to accept what you are being told. Instead, you stay more fluid with your thinking: “Have I seen this before?” “Do I know of anyone who is in that situation?” “What would it be like to have been there?” “Are their conclusions correct or are there other conclusions that make more sense?” This is what runs through your head, not a monotone statement like “I hate the government.”
Conflicting reports become obvious. The consequences of actions people take shout out at you. The environment around you begins to calm down. It gets quiet and responsive to your demands rather than being a swirling mass of trash bags filled with random, useless information banging you in the face.
But the best thing about all of this is the pleasure of talking with another Scientologist who deals with life and information in this manner. The conversations are loaded with usable facts and “I saw…” or “it’s my opinion…” There is a kindness you experience coming from someone who is telling you something that they obviously comprehend and want you to understand. It’s just pure pleasure. And because of this, some of the most upsetting or horrific world events can be talked about without upsetting or offending anyone.
I’m not saying we all agree on everything—far from it. We come from numerous cultures, diverse backgrounds and faraway lands. If you enter a Scientology Organization you will find diversity there second to none. Every race, creed, ethnicity, nationality, age group and any other way you want to divvy up the human race is represented.
It is quite a pleasure to have conversations and friendships like this. And if I got nothing more out of Scientology, I would consider myself truly blessed.
It’s why we stand tall. It’s why we have an impact on society, and it’s why we are regarded highly. We know what we know and we (each of us individually) know we know it.
Now maybe I’m bragging. But that’s what I’ve observed myself, and that’s what’s true for me.