Scientology: Ecclesiastical justice, Part 3 of 3 in a special report on the Church of Scientology
Skepdude says – Part 3 of the St. Petersburgh’s Times expose of the Church of Scientology – just keep in mind that as much as this agrees with what we skeptics think of the cult of Scientology, at this point we’re witnessing a he-said-she-said battle and it is hard to pick out the truth from simply anectodal evidence, so let us be good skeptics and not crucify them for this unless real hard evidence is presented.
The four high-ranking executives who left Scientology say that church leader David Miscavige not only physically attacked members of his executive staff, he messed with their minds.
He frequently had groups of managers jump into a pool or a lake. He mustered them into group confessions that sometimes spun into free-for-alls, with people hitting one another.
Mike Rinder, who defended the church to the media for two decades, couldn’t stomach what was happening on the inside.
The tactics to keep executives in line “are wrong from a Scientology viewpoint,” said Rinder, who walked away two years ago. “They are not standard practice of Scientology. They are just not humanitarian. And they are just outright evil.”
Church spokesmen confirm that managers are ordered into pools and assembled for group confessions. It’s part of the “ecclesiastical justice” system the church imposes on poor performers.
Rinder and the other defectors couldn’t cut it in the tough world of Scientology’s Sea Org, a group whose members dedicate their lives to service of the church, the church says. Rather than accept their own failings, the defectors are putting a sinister twist on something that is normal.
The Sea Org is a “crew of tough sons of bitches,” said church spokesman Tommy Davis, an 18-year veteran of the group.
“The Sea Org is not a democracy. The members of it agree with a man named L. Ron Hubbard. They abide by his policies . . . and we follow it to the T, to the letter, to the punctuation marks. And if you disagree with that and you don’t like it, you don’t belong. Then you leave.”
A better thetan
The order came about 10 p.m. on a winter’s night: Report to the swimming pool.
From around the church’s postcard-pretty base in the mountains east of Los Angeles, some 70 staff members turned out in their Navy-style uniforms. David Miscavige was unhappy with the troops, again.