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I was just reading the Wikipedia page on the anti-psychiatry movement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-psychiatry), and I really had to share this quick gem:

"Despite sharing notable antipsychiatrists' views on some issues, Scientology doctrine differs in some respects. Scientology has promoted psychiatry-related conspiracy theories, including that psychiatry was responsible for World War I,[69] the rise of Hitler and Stalin,[70] the decline in education standards in the United States,[71] the wars in Bosnia and Kosovo,[72] and the September 11 attacks.[73][74] Secular critics of psychiatry do not share these positions."

Yes, apparently they differ in "some respects", namely... most secular critics don't think every bad thing that has ever happened in history was a plot by psychiatrists? Who knew! And just in case that wasn't enough...

"Scientology doctrine, further, holds that psychiatrists caused the decline in this universe billions of years ago,[75] while Scientologists are committed to never taking psychiatric drugs and reject psychology outright.[76]"

I'm not sure what decline they are talking about, but do they really think there were psychiatrists around billions of years ago? I suppose if psychiatry is the ultimate evil in the universe, then it must have been around forever. It's interesting that this is sort of the inverse of what the young earth creationists believe. Instead of the earth having been formed thousands of years ago (around the time the first human civilizations formed), perhaps human civilizations (ruled by psychiatrists of course!) formed billions of years ago, around the time the earth formed. Tom Cruise, John Travolta? If you're reading this, I want you to know that every time I read anything about Scientology it gets harder and harder to enjoy your movies. =( I guess this does explain why Tom Cruise volunteered so much of his time to help the victims of Sept 11th. Maybe he thought he was undoing the psychiatrists dirty work? It also adds a whole new potential meaning to his comment on national television "you haven't read about the history of psychiatry! I have!!"

Also, I can't help but ask: if they reject psychology outright, would they reject or embrace reverse psychology? =)

Comments

( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Mar. 9th, 2010 04:41 am (UTC)
"Also, I can't help but ask: if they reject psychology outright, would they reject or embrace reverse psychology? =)"

They stare at you with their thousand-yard stare, and then go Tone 40 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tone_scale) on you and talk really loudly. That's Scientology reverse psychology for you ;)
easwaran
Mar. 9th, 2010 05:01 am (UTC)
I used to live across the street from one of their big buildings. They have a truck with a "Psychiatry: the Science of Death" billboard on it that they drive around town, and they also have a museum close to the Hollywood Walk of Fame with exhibits about why psychiatry is the science of death.

Oh, and I forget which, but they either think that the universe is 73 billion or 73 trillion years old, and that most of the problems of the world are due to people being controlled or something by "thetans" which are bad spirits of some sort. Presumably the psychiatrists on the home planet were responsible for the thetans or something.

I suspect that the whole anti-psychiatry thing is more because psychiatrists will be involved in any de-cult-ing process, and they want to make sure that cult members are brainwashed to stay as far away from psychiatrists as possible.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 9th, 2010 03:05 pm (UTC)
No, that's not the basis of scientology's anti-psychiatric twist. That was in-built by Hubbard. He tied psychiatric improprieties in with his cosmic space drama. ;)
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 03:39 pm (UTC)
Hubbard may have woven it into his space drama, but how do know that he didn't do it intentionally with the idea of starting a cult in mind?
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 9th, 2010 04:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, he was intentionally building a cult. He studied Jack Parsons and the OTO, and modeled Partsof Scientology on Crowley's Thelema. What I meant to say was that the anti-psychiatric arm of their cosmogony roots back to Xenu, not psychiatry's anti-cult performativity.
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 06:53 pm (UTC)
I understand that, but I think what easwaran was suggesting is that sometimes mythology serves a hidden function of keeping members in line. If he wrote all the stories about Xenu before he had any idea it would turn into a cult, then I think you've got a good argument that the two were unrelated. On the other hand, if he always had that in mind... I don't see why he couldn't have inserted it in there deliberately for the reason easwaran says.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 9th, 2010 07:02 pm (UTC)
With a little exposure to Hubbard's work, you might be less willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. He wasn't especially clever, and abhorred the esoteric and metaphorical. He prided himself on being very 'scientific'.

As for Xenu, nah, that yarn was spun for the sole purpose of creating a functioning cult. When you start digging into their psyches, Hubbard's a really just a twisted version of Crowley.
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 07:39 pm (UTC)
Ok, I think you know a lot more about it than I do. I haven't actually read any of Hubbard's work, although I did watch Battlefield Earth last year. Seemed like a good premise but with really poor implementation. Not sure how much of that was the bad acting and how much was Hubbard's work just being a flop.

When you start digging into their psyches, Hubbard's a really just a twisted version of Crowley.

I remember seeing an interview with his son, where his son accuses his father and his father's cult of secretly being involved in black magic and devil worship. It sounded like a strange thing to say, considering all of the more legitimate critiques one could give of Scientology. But if Hubbard was really borrowing a lot from Crowley perhaps it makes at least *half* sense. Although it's strange that he would have imitated Crowley but hated the esoteric. Not sure how to make sense of that one. =)
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 07:41 pm (UTC)

I remember seeing an interview with his son, where his son accuses his father and his father's cult of secretly being involved in black magic and devil worship.

L Ron Hubbard's son, that is.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 9th, 2010 10:55 pm (UTC)
Here's a quote from his son that might add a little context: "What a lot of people don’t realize is that Scientology is black magic that is just spread over a long period of time. Black magic is the inner core of Scientology – and it is probably the only part of Scientology that really works."
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 11:57 pm (UTC)
Yes, that helps.

Out of curiosity, how would you define black magic?

If I recall correctly, Donald Kraig defines it in his book as magic used to influence other people lives, as opposed to grey magic which is used to influence your own life, or white magic which is used soley to attain spiritual enlightenment and get in touch with your holy guardian angel.

When I read that, I remember thinking "I bet these are not the only definitions in use". But so far I haven't come across any who states as clear definitions as he does for those.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 10th, 2010 12:08 am (UTC)
Like so many dichotomies, the black/white magick one collapses if you scratch too deeply. But, from my vantage black magicks/sorcery involves predation, fear, and ego. It's often materialistic and narcissistic. On the other hand, white magic usually manifests as nurturing, expansive, and dissipative. Perhaps it's all in my head, but I generally find it very easy to distinguish which form of practice magicians prefer. I find that it affects their ... for lack of a better term, presence.
spoonless
Mar. 10th, 2010 12:45 am (UTC)
Ah, the descriptions you give actual fit much better with the notion of black and white magic I had before I came across Donald Kraig's definitions. But I figured those notions may just come from watching Disney Movies or something far removed from serious magickal practice.

So, is this one of those things where everyone has their own different definitions... do you think the ones I mentioned are non-standard, or are they somehow another way of looking at the ones you present? Or is it just a mixed bag and it depends on who you ask.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 10th, 2010 12:50 am (UTC)
Yeah, it depends on who you ask. People who practice a lot of thaumaturgy - earthy, materialistic magics - tend to not see what they're doing as black magick. On the other hand, those who work primarily with theurgy see all that dabbling as rather silly.

Kraig wasn't being dishonest. He was accurately conveying an essential ambiguity. It's easy to get caught up in what kind of magick you want to practice - or be seen as practicing. There's no point in getting bogged down in that in the beginning, when pretty much every ritual you work will be ego-based.
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 10th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
Also, given your recent expressed interest in Scientology - and since you don't seem to read my blog - I thought I might draw your attention to this series of posts I made during and after my ... examination of Anonymous. You might find some of the details entertaining. ;)
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 03:43 pm (UTC)

Oh, and I forget which, but they either think that the universe is 73 billion or 73 trillion years old

73 trillion would not surprise me. It's like... most religious people think the universe is much younger than science say, but we want to offer something brand new and don't want to be like the other kids, so hey... bright idea... we'll say it's much older!
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 03:47 pm (UTC)
I had heard about the thetans.

But for some reason if they had just said that the thetans were billions of years old, it would not sound nearly as nutty as saying that *psychiatrists* are billions of years old.
easwaran
Mar. 9th, 2010 11:35 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it is a bit strange to say that a medical tradition that stretches back a few decades somehow is the same as a tradition from another planet billions of years ago. I don't think they want to say there were psychiatrists plying their evil trade in the 18th century, but I'm not sure why psychiatrists would have just started up again recently if they are brought from long ago and far away.
daze39
Mar. 9th, 2010 05:08 am (UTC)
Maybe we could try to sic the Scientologists and the Mormons on each other - they deserve each other; it gets them both out of everybody else's hair, and we sit back and sell popcorn...

"He found a promoter who nearly fell off the floor, and said 'I never engaged in this kind of thing before, but yes I think it can be very easily done: we'll just put some bleachers out in the sun and have it on Highway 61'" (Bob Dylan, "Highway 61 Revisited")
easwaran
Mar. 9th, 2010 11:36 pm (UTC)
Actually, when I was living next door to the Scientology building last year, the only missionaries I got were a pair of Mormons just before I moved out.
spoonless
Mar. 9th, 2010 11:46 pm (UTC)
Oh man, I really hope the Scientologists don't start going door to door. Better keep them away from the Mormon's so they don't pick up any of their tricks.

Actually, come to think of it, it might be really entertaining to talk to one who went door to door. I guess I don't mind them coming to my door, I just want to make sure they stay away from more gullible people's doors :)
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Mar. 9th, 2010 03:03 pm (UTC)
The 'decline' that was caused by psychiatrists millions of years ago = Xenu's cosmic rampage.
luxvalence
Mar. 9th, 2010 06:04 pm (UTC)
Hahahahahaha! I mean really, what can you do but laugh? (Crazy in the coconut!)
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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