Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Scientology and Psychiatry

Scientology's obsession with psychiatry is well-known, as are Tom Cruise's occasional anti-psychiatrist harangues. Less famous is Roder and Kubillus's Scientology-published book Psychiatrists: the Men Behind Hitler. It's from Scientology that we get quotes like this:

"...psychiatric theories that man is a mere animal have been used to rationalize, for example, the wholesale slaughter of human beings in World Wars I and II".

Starting to sound familiar? Exactly the same argument is used against evolution by creationists, i.e. that acceptance of the theory somehow leads to moral degradation and ultimately to genocide. Scientologists: assuming you think that Xenu evolved, how is your argument different from, and better than, the creationists'? Details and examples please; "it just obviously is" won't fly. Creationists, same question to you, but reversed. Atheists: another fun question for you to ask either party.

In the interest of full disclosure - something you won't find from many Operating Thetans - I intend to become a psychiatrist. How are my actions different from someone who merely intends to suppress the truth? I'm not exactly suppressing it by putting links to it in my blog, am I? On the other hand, Scientology's obsession with psychiatry seems curiously well-arranged to keep its brainwashed practitioners away from therapies that might help them. It's a religious innovation on par with the exaggeration of in-group morality and Abrahamic exclusivity to have No Other Gods Before Me.

No doubt this article will be popping up in the Google News feeds of the hordes of web-scrubbers the C of S employs (hi guys! Prove your reputation by harrassing me!), so here's a challenge. If the following is really true:

"...while Scientology is more visible than ever, with churches dotting every continent on Earth and millions of parishioners around the world, one is hard pressed to find even a single psychiatrist with a shingle on his door."

- from an article titled "The End of the Fight"

...then it's time for me to make a little money, as I often suggest. If any of you really believe this, then let's make a bet. We'll set a definition of the the triumph of Scientology over psychiatry that we both agree on and put the money in escrow with a third party. What, none of you has the courage of your convictions? Come on, let's make this interesting!

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