Tag Archives: anti-scientology cult

BLACKMAIL

 

I felt like I was pretty much done with the ASC (Anti-Scientology Cult) awareness-education business after the post How Gullible Can One Get?  However, within a couple of days of publication I received a blackmail threat from ASC headquarters (from ASC royalty in fact).  The demand requires me to shut down the exposure of facts and thoughts I have been sharing of late on this blog. The threat was that if I continue on that subject line my most well-concealed, secret crimes will be exposed.

Those crimes were characterized as fitting the bill of what Jeff Hawkins authoritatively spoke of in My Scientology Movie. Hawkins appears there stating with an air of grave profundity, paraphrased, “Rathbun has definitely not told all; he knows where all the bodies are buried.”

While I consider whether to cave and muzzle myself as ordered or to stand and carry on with exposing hypocrisy, I thought it would help to have the ASC rank and file weigh in. I have attracted scores of ASC trolls in the past couple of months, and discussion of my posts have dominated ASC comment-message threads. Now the followers have the opportunity to contribute something meaningful to their cause.

All they have to do in order to participate is pass a pre-school level cognitive-coordination challenge. This poll is going to be a test of their attention span, self-discipline, and motor-skills faculties. That is, they can weigh in with one word, either “cave” which means stfu (and every other unkind thought they feel compelled to hurl my way) or they can say “stand” which means “go ahead and express yourself.”  You must go by your regular cyber cult handle. That way ASC leadership (the blackmailers) knows exactly where you stand. It also allows us to see which of those who regularly read here and comment on me elsewhere have the nerve to defy ASC leadership standing orders not to read and discuss my posts anymore.

I anxiously await ASC input so that I may complete this most nerve-racking decision-making process.

How Gullible Can One Get?

 

It came to my attention that some fellow gave a youtube lecture about what he called a conflict between Tony Ortega and me. When I went to the video I saw a man calling himself Chris Shelton ‘critical thinker at large.’ It would be difficult to imagine more inflated airs of self-absorbed arrogance than this fellow manages to put on; nor a mind as infected with hive-mentality.

Mr. Shelton claims in the video not to know anything about what went down behind the scenes in the terminations of Monique Rathbun’s lawyers and lawsuit – delivered with a tongue-in-cheek smirk. But, he comes to the authoritative conclusion that I have somehow overreacted to Ortega’s four-month campaign smearing my wife and me over the issue. He concludes it is a function of the damaged former Scientologist mind – a syndrome he claims to be an expert in.

I learned that before these broadcasted profundities Shelton was making the ASC (Anti-Scientology Cult) rounds swearing people to secrecy before giving them the ‘real story’ behind the terminations. He swore the story was obtained straight from Monique’s former lawyer’s mouth. Shelton’s rumor-monger account – if believed – would mean that either Tony Ortega made up and published quotes attributed to Ray Jeffrey about his former client, or that Ray Jeffrey simply lied like a flatfish throughout his ‘exclusive’ Ortega interview. That would be the ‘Quiz Street’ interview where Jeffrey swore he did not have a clue as to which way was up.

Between Ortega’s plethora of claims as to ‘inside knowledge’ and then Shelton’s, it seems they would like the ASC krew to believe that Jeffrey is more like Perez Hilton than Perry Mason.

In either event, it demonstrates that Shelton at best is not playing with a full deck. He delivers psych analyses giving knowingly false premises to support his damning conclusions.

Looking further into Shelton’s gig I learned something remarkable. He has posted dozens of videos pontificating about the damaged minds of Scientologists (current and former). They are delivered with the self-sure authority of an Ivy League shrink.  Paradoxically, Shelton’s principle support for putting out his mass psychiatric diagnoses comes from someone who purports to deliver Scientology services at the highest level of proficiency. Shelton’s benefactor also pays Tony Ortega to, among other things, regularly post Shelton’s ramblings at The Underground Bunker.

More remarkable is that some former Scientologists actually pass around Shelton’s mental-deficiency diagnoses of themselves. Brain dead, and damn proud of it.

Non-Peakers vs. Peakers

Abraham Maslow was a 20th Century psychologist who did a lot of work in the field of the psychology of spirituality and religion. He carried on a tradition started by William James in the late 19th Century. James and Maslow observed that there was a great divide that made reconciliation of materialist thought and spiritualist experience daunting if not impossible. For a primer, see Maslow’s Religions, Values and Peak-Experiences and James’ The Varieties of Religious Experience. In summary, they understood that the spiritually-inclined could not be understood or taken seriously by a class of materialists. Maslow referred to the latter as ‘non-peakers.’ That is, people who seemed constitutionally incapable of peak experiences, a term he coined for personal transcendent spiritual events. These have variously been described as glimpses of or connections to non-duality, unity consciousness, or God.

Whatever the description, the peak experience by its nature defies words. The futility of relating such through language was noted 2,500 years ago by Lao Tzu in the opening verses of the Tao Te Ching: the unnamable is the eternally real. General Semanticist Alfred Korzybski put it this way in the 20th Century: the map is not the territory.

More recently physicists have applied science to validate Lao Tzu and other Eastern sages (and in a way the likes of Korzybski, Maslow and James too), see The Tao of Physics – Fritjof Capra, The Unobservable Universe – Scott Tyson, The God Theory – Bernard Haisch, Biocentrism – Robert Lanza; to name but a few of many. In various ways the authors argue that the evolution of science is beginning to reveal the accuracy of what spiritualists have attempted to describe since antiquity as the true nature of the universe.  It is a nature that transcends the limitations of language and two-value logic.

In his essay “The Will To Believe” William James addressed why the materialist/spiritualist debate is a dead end street. It is because while materialists write off any spiritualist argument as being predicated upon belief, the materialist’s ‘certainty’ of the dual nature of the universe is just as strongly founded upon faith. To quote U2, both sides are coming from “a place that has to be believed to be seen.” But, the materialist is dead certain he is not. A better appreciation for the truth of James’ conclusions can be found in Bill Bryson’s A Short History of Nearly Everything. In a simple, matter-of-fact manner Bryson demonstrates that all branches of science rely upon faith in theories.

Having spent three decades exploring scientology and another decade examining its nemesis, the Anti-Scientology Cult (ASC), I believe the answer to the ASC-Scientology perpetual conflict may lie in the observations of James and Maslow. As much as ASC’s Scientology debunking is embraced by the infotainment, scandal-obsessed media –  which ASC’s leaders have chortled effectively makes Scientology fair game – the ASC is more of a belief-based culture than Scientology is (a self-acknowledged religion).  ASC’s means of attempted conversion to its materialist world views can be  more zealous and coercive than anything it accuses Scientology of.  Attempts to ameliorate ASC’s extremism have been met with the most vicious, surreptitious back stabbing; carried out with crusade-like fervor.

But, put all that hypocrisy aside for the moment – it leaves a lot of room for debate. Let’s focus on one  fact that cannot be disputed. It is published for the world to see. That is, all ASC fora (Underground Bunker, Mike Rinder’s blog, Ex Scnsts Message Board included) default to making ruthless fun of that which Scientologists swear Scientology does for them spiritually. While wrapping their periodic scandal-mongering around a noble reform flag, ASC sites most consistently revel in denigrating professed results of Scientology applications as nothing but the bunk. It is a critical component of ASC membership. It justifies all of its ass clown hijinks against Scientology. It operates like a bedrock article of faith. The highest attainment in ASC is the firmly expressed certainty that peak experiences are delusions of the weak minded.

Those who got something useful from their Scientology experience but ever felt afraid or embarrassed to share it might agree with some of this. They might also reinstate the power of their peak experiences by perusing some of the references cited above.

Scientology Floggers

Within 24 hours of posting Cyber Cults, the anti-scientology cyber-cult came unglued. If you haven’t read Cyber Cults and its links, I suggest you do so before reading on. The links are to three thoroughly unrelated people – also unrelated to me – who independently shared experiences of cult-like behavior from flogger (a blogger who flogs the alleged lives of others for money) Tony Ortega. Immediately, Ortega followers zealously rallied to his defense, characterizing the calmly-stated, fact-filled observations I linked to as evil-motivated “attacks” upon their dear leader. What was remarkable was the almost uniform application of an important characteristic of cult behavior.

That is taken from Steve Hassan whom the Ortega cult itself has promoted as quite the authority on cults.  It is, “Make the person feel that problems are always their own fault, never the leader’s or the group’s fault.”  Like so many hyenas, the anti-scientology cult members reactively rallied to attack in Ortega’s defense (ignoring the substance of the observations about his conduct) and viciously went after me and all three of those sharing independent experiences about their leader. We were accused of being Scientology operatives, mentally ill, and a plethora of derogatory epitaphs not fit for re-publication here.

One of Ortega’s more hysterical devotees called for censorship of myself and the other three, then targeted a facebook group (containing more than 400 members critical of scientology) as being fair game for having had the temerity to discuss the substance of my post Cyber Cults. Those pronunciamentos (and their avid acceptance and support by other cyber cultists) demonstrated most of the elements of the following additional Hassan cult characteristic:

Require members to internalize the group’s doctrine as truth
a. Adopting the group’s ‘map of reality’ as reality
b. Instill black and white thinking
c. Decide between good vs. evil
d. Organize people into us vs. them (insiders vs. outsiders)

For any who doubt these characterizations of the reaction to Cyber Cults, they can verify them by reading the thread themselves (or as much as they can stomach) at ex-scientologist message board.  While you read their treatment of the three I linked to along with me, keep in mind another of Hassan’s critical characteristics of a cult:

Promote feelings of guilt or unworthiness, such as
a. Identity guilt
b. You are not living up to your potential
c. Your family is deficient
d. Your past is suspect
e. Your affiliations are unwise
f. Your thoughts, feelings, actions are irrelevant or selfish
g. Social guilt
h. Historical guilt

This is an interesting study in extremism. As Robert Hughes aptly demonstrated in his book Culture of Complaint opposite extremes always seem to have a way of meeting (becoming almost indistinguishable in behavior). On that score, principal stars of the anti-scientology cult are warning people that it is “dangerous” to communicate with me. That’s right, it is dangerous to be exposed to ideas that don’t march lockstep with the cult’s doctrinal black and white, us vs. them mentality.  These include people being promoted by Ortega for working with him on tv specials on scientology disconnection. They apparently are so appalled by scientology’s notion of disconnect that they are actively advising people to disconnect from me.

What I have witnessed personally on the part of the anti-scientology community’s leading lights recently is behavior that makes the average dedicated scientologist seem extraordinarily open-minded and tolerant by comparison.

As a final side note, I noticed a lot of cyber-cultists characterizing my recent posts as some sort of ‘war’ on Tony Ortega and that I wish to engage him in some public debate.  That is another indication of their cult-like, insular belief that the real universe revolves around their play world.  As far as Ortega is concerned I am only preparing the ground to correct the public record he polluted for four months about my family.  He is merely one of thousands of click bait floggers plying his trade as floggers do. I have no intention of changing that – that is fundamentally who he is.  The vermin he carries water for might be another story.  It depends on how they continue to respond and not respond.