Now, I'm usually pretty laid back about other people's religions, but there is just something about Scientology that makes me want to build a giant bonfire with every available copy of Dianetics I can find. A lot of religions are far-fetched. Let's take a look:
- Judaism An invisible being chooses a percentage of the human population to torture indefinitely.
- Christianity Followers worship a carpenter (not Karen) who rose from the dead 2,000 years ago.
- Church of Jesus Christ and The Latter Day Saints a.k.a. Mormons Founder of religion follows beautiful naked man into woods, explains his absence by starting religion based off of "plates" of text no one can see.
- Shinto Followers believe that every inanimate object has a spirit; explains why Mr. Jen thinks canned goods sometimes need to be itched.
- Neo-Pagans The universe is governed by various pantheons of petty, vindictive and selfish gods who look kindly upon dressing up in RenFaire garb and dancing around campfires at the local state park.
- Buddhism Everything causes you suffering somehow, so don't overdo it and you should be fine.
Okay, so Buddhism doesn't sound that far-fetched. But given the list of weird things people believe, you'd think Scientology would be pretty easy to accept, right?
Scientologists believe that a bunch of years ago, before there were any people on the Earth, an evil space villain froze some aliens and dropped them into a volcano or something, and when people showed up, the ghosts of the aliens swooped in and infected us with all of their negative emotions, and that's why we get depressed and sick and hurt and have the daily ups and downs of life.
Let that sink in a moment. Alien ghosts.
The thing is, I have no problem with what anyone wants to believe. That's their business. But when they have such a smug attitude about it-- like Tom "we're the only ones who can save the world" Cruise-- and act as though it is their duty to convert everyone, well, that just really gets under my skin like hallucinogenic spiders with your dead grandma's face right after you've done a big ole bowlful of PCP.
And maybe a lot of my anger toward Scientology is based on the fact that while they want everyone to learn their secret ways of rejecting medical science and patting each other on the backs for understanding the universal truth, they want everyone to pay for it. And they want people to pay a lot of money. So, what we've ended up with is a church made of rich, successful people who think it's their job to save the world, because their egos weren't big enough to begin with.
Scientology just seems like a way to proclaim to the world, "Look at me! I'm rich! I'm important! This has be validated in a way that makes me feel secure about how I am living my life! More importantly, I know more than you do, and you can't find out what I know unless you pay for it, which you probably can't!"
Seriously, just buy a private jet or name a hospital after yourself, for Xenu's sake.
ETA: In the interest of fairness to Tom Cruise, here's a video of an absolutely nut bar lady who starts screaming about Jesus, Mexicans, and Shannon Doherty and gets kicked out a coffee shop. The site that hosts it is NSFW, though: http://www.filecabi.net/video/Christian_Lady_Coffee_Shop.html