Selections from a blog on “how and why you became involved with the Church of Scientology,” republished courtesy of the Scientology Parent website. For more answers to this question, watch episodes of I Am a Scientologist on the Scientology Network.
I got answers from a number of Scientologists to the question of both how they came into Scientology, and why they decided to be Scientologists. Some of them grew up in a Scientology family, others did not:
Cindy: I was introduced to Scientology through my aunt when I moved to Los Angeles from Kingston, Jamaica. At that time, I had just completed high school and had no plans for college or my future. She signed me up at a community college and also for two Scientology courses. These Scientology courses were life-changing and brought me to whole new levels of personal achievement.
Stephanie: My parents both found out about Scientology and started doing Scientology services (reading books, taking classes and getting some personal counseling) when I was about 4 years old. Everything I saw as a result from this was positive. When my parents first found Scientology they were having marital trouble and were very likely headed for divorce. Scientology saved their marriage. From my view, it positively changed the way they interacted with each other, the way they handled us kids, how happy they were, and how purposeful they were. So, I had a very good impression of the subject from a very young age. They were good about communicating to my sister and me some of the basics they were learning about life, relationships and spirituality, and all of those points of Scientology made some good sense to me even as a kid, and just seemed to be quite useful and real. They never pushed us to do Scientology services as kids but made them available to us if we were interested.
I always considered myself a Scientologist as a kid, but I started actually pursuing it on my own, in terms of actually doing services myself, at about the age of 9. I started at that age with some simple courses here and there, like one on how to improve relationships and one on integrity. Then later, in my teens, I did not only courses but also some counseling (called “auditing” in Scientology), and I went on from there.
There are a number of reasons I became involved in Scientology myself, and have then continued to practice it throughout my life. Some of the most important reasons are:
(1) Scientology is a very practical religion—that is, it is completely built around the idea that it is for actual use in our lives to improve our own abilities, happiness, and state of being, and to help improve the lives of those around us.
(2) It works. I have continually found that when I learn and then use Scientology in some area of my life, or to help others, that it does actually produce results. For real. That is huge for me. It has provided information that helps me understand myself and the people and the world around me, thus improving my ability to handle all of these things better. And it has provided me with tools and with things I can DO to actually help myself and others. I find that incredibly rewarding.
Diane: When I was 20 years old I was in college. Though I went to school with a scholarship, in my second year I was failing and had fallen very ill. I am very religious and couldn’t understand what was happening. I had no idea what to do with my life. The day before I was going for surgery I was praying for God to either take me when I was in surgery or to please show me my purpose for being here. At that moment, a woman came and showed me the book Dianetics and invited me to a lecture. Not listening or observing well, I had no intention of attending, but my mother was interested and dragged me to this lecture. I found the lecture extremely interesting and felt there was a lot of observable truth there. After I had surgery I read the book Dianetics and wrote the author. He wrote me back thanking me for my kind words about his research but then asked me, “How do you know it works?” He said I shouldn’t just accept things just because someone says so, I should see for myself if they are true. So I tried it and wrote him back that now I had tried it and I still felt it was workable and a good theory. L. Ron Hubbard continued to write me for the next eleven years. He never pushed me to anything and often didn’t mention more that his interests and activities or to ask about my well-being. He became a dear friend and mentored me through anything I personally asked for. He was always very kind and very funny. Years later I realized I did, in fact, find my purpose that day. I like helping others and I found a way to do that effectively.
Alexa: I went searching for more answers and along my journey, I discovered that I wanted to become the most “me” possible and that I didn’t want to have the ideas and opinions of others in my head and affecting my “me-ness” any longer.
I ended up talking to my dad about this and he told me I should try Scientology because Scientology encompasses all religious views and has a broad spectrum of understanding. He had heard about Scientology through my uncle who has done advanced courses in the religion. He always admired how peaceful my uncle’s presence was and thus had a high regard for what Scientology could do for a person. My dad drove me 45 minutes to our nearest Church of Scientology and helped me get signed up for my first life improvement course, “The Ups and Downs of Life Course“.
I felt like all the scattered thoughts in my head had been organized into a book when I looked at all the Life Improvement courses. Then someone showed me the Bridge and what being Clear meant. I couldn’t believe it was possible to get rid of that part of your mind that isn’t truly you. I actually told the guy to “shut up” and “you’re lying there is no way that exists.” Shortly after I started my the Purification Rundown and recently finished the Survival Rundown. Scientology changed my life forever and I never want to look back. It has helped me realize who I truly am.
Sarah: I was a teenager, struggling to find my place in the world. Scientology made sense to me from my first encounter with it. At the suggestion of a friend, I read from the Scientology Ethics book.
My friend helped me apply the step by step formulas for resolving the conditions in life, to my own life. For the first time, I wasn’t lost anymore, & 22 years later, I’ve never felt lost since. True story!
Ros: I was 21. A boyfriend showed me some pamphlets about Scientology. I told him I thought it was a scam and agreed to go to an intro lecture to prove it was a scam. Within the first half-hour, I was exposed to so much truth, had so many basic questions about life answered, that I became a Scientologist at once. And have been ever since.
Tina: I was a single mom with a great career, but I really was looking for answers regarding interpersonal relationships and as a young adult I knew there was more to the riddles in life than was I was seeing. I sincerely wanted to understand how is it that some people could be great but others could be downright evil— why and how?
Then I saw an ad for the book Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health and got the book a few days later. Finally answers to my questions! Then later, all the riddles were no longer riddles—I fully understand my fellow man now and this has changed my outlook and my life forever. Despite the good or the bad that we all witness in life, I live without confusions in life. I can solve any problem presented by life, and life is so much more enjoyable—and best of all I can truly help others. I have a beautiful, happy, productive family and friends, and no matter what happens in life or where I may live or work, I know I can create a good life and survive well.