Portal:Scientology

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The Scientology Portal

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Scientology is a body of beliefs and related practices created by Speculative Fiction author L. Ron Hubbard (1911–1986), starting in 1952, as a successor to his earlier self-help system, Dianetics. Hubbard characterized Scientology as a religion, and in 1953 incorporated the Church of Scientology in Camden, New Jersey.

Scientology teaches that people are immortal beings who have forgotten their true nature. Its method of spiritual rehabilitation is a type of counselling known as auditing, in which practitioners aim to consciously re-experience painful or traumatic events in their past in order to free themselves of their limiting effects. Study materials and auditing courses are made available to members in return for specified donations. Scientology is legally recognized as a tax-exempt organization in the United States and some other countries, and the Church of Scientology emphasizes this as proof that it is a bona fide religion. In other countries, notably France, Germany and the United Kingdom, Scientology does not have comparable religious status.

A large number of organizations overseeing the application of Scientology have been established, the most notable of these being the Church of Scientology. Scientology sponsors a variety of social service programs. These include the Narconon anti-drug program, the Criminon prison rehabilitation program, the Study Tech education methodology, a volunteer organization, a business management method, and a set of moral guidelines expressed in a booklet called The Way to Happiness.

The Church of Scientology is one of the most controversial new religious movements to have arisen in the 20th century. It has often been described as a cult that financially defrauds and abuses its members, charging exorbitant fees for its spiritual services. The Church of Scientology has consistently used litigation against such critics, and its aggressiveness in pursuing its foes has been condemned as harassment. Further controversy has focused on Scientology's belief that souls ("thetans") reincarnate and have lived on other planets before living on Earth. Former members say that some of Hubbard's writings on this remote extraterrestrial past, included in confidential Upper Levels, are not revealed to practitioners until they have paid thousands of dollars to the Church of Scientology. Another controversial belief held by Scientologists is that the practice of psychiatry is destructive and abusive and must be abolished. Notable Scientologists include many well known people such as Tom Cruise, Greta Van Susteren, Chick Corea, John Travolta, Priscilla Presley and Kirstie Alley.

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Trey Parker, one of the writers of the episode & South Park co-creator
"Trapped in the Closet" is the twelfth episode of the ninth season of the Comedy Central series South Park. It originally aired on November 16, 2005. The plot of the episode centers on the South Park character Stan Marsh, as he joins Scientology in an attempt to find something "fun and free". After the discovery of his surprisingly high "thetan levels", he is recognized as the reincarnation of the founder of the church, L. Ron Hubbard. Isaac Hayes, the voice of Chef, quit the show shortly before the start of the tenth season. The reason for his departure, as reported by Matt Stone, was due to his faith in Scientology and this episode, which—despite initially supporting the show's satirical take on several talk shows—he claimed was very offensive. "Trapped in the Closet" was nominated for an Emmy Award in July 2006, in the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour) category in July 2006, but lost to The Simpsons episode "The Seemingly Never-Ending Story". The episode was featured among Comedy Central's list of "10 South Parks That Changed The World", spoofed by Conan O'Brien in the opening segment of the 58th Primetime Emmy Awards, and mentioned in the Scientology critique film, The Bridge.

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Scientology recruiter using E-meter
Credit: Salimfadhley

An E-meter is an electronic device manufactured by the Church of Scientology at their Gold Base production facility. It is used as an aid by Dianetics and Scientology counselors and counselors-in-training in some forms of auditing, the application of the techniques of Dianetics and Scientology to another or to oneself for the express purpose of addressing spiritual issues. The device is formally known as the Hubbard Electrometer.

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Beck in concert
Beck Hansen (born Bek David Campbell, July 8, 1970) is a Grammy Award-winning American musician, singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, known by his simple stage name of Beck. With his pop collage of musical styles, oblique, ironic lyrics, and post-modern arrangements incorporating samples, drum machines, live instrumentation and sound effects, Beck has been hailed by critics and the public throughout his musical career as being amongst the most idiosyncratic artists of 1990s alternative rock. Beck rose to underground popularity with his earliest works, which combined social criticism (as in "MTV Makes Me Want to Smoke Crack" and "Deep Fried Love") with musical and lyrical experimentalism. He first came to wider public attention with his breakthrough single "Loser", a hit in 1994, which some described as a novelty song. However, Beck was not easily categorized into a single genre. Some likened his absurd, free-flowing lyrical style and the lo-fi folk songs of his early career to Bob Dylan, and his later eclecticism sparked comparisons to Prince. His 1996 album Odelay was awarded Album of the Year by Rolling Stone, and nominated for a Grammy.

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What was most incredible about being with him [L. Ron Hubbard] was that he made you feel that you were important..He didn't in any way promote himself or his own self-importance. He was very, very loving and had the widest range of knowledge and experience that you could possibly imagine -- he'd studied everything.

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