I'm a long-time Scientologist and Atlanta native and I have found Scientology to be a very welcoming and helpful group. Being connected with the Church has improved the lives of myself and my family. I would want others to experience the same success I have had.
Is it a perfect organization? Of course not, but in my experience, most people who criticize it have never been in the door of the place or read a book by its founder, L. Ron Hubbard. When the new Church facility opens I invite everyone to come in an look for yourself and to think for yourself, and not listen to the rantings of people who hide behind their computer screens and spew hate.
To me those secret, faceless, online hate-mongers are the real cults - and don't think they could not find something about anyone to ridicule and hate.
Facts can be twisted and anonymous lies are easy to repeat. Scientology is just an easy target because we stand up for what we believe and don't back down - ever.
Every foul utterance the haters make further proves their small minded intolerance and bigotry. In another decade these same haters would have been at KKK rallies with their midnight cross burnings and hidden faces. They should not be feared, just shunned.
So to the fair minded people of the area, please keep my open invitation in mind and come visit our Church. Look and think for yourself. As for Scientology, its here to stay and we're here to help.
Developed by L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology is a religion that offers a precise path leading to a complete and certain understanding of one's true spiritual nature and one's relationship to self, family, groups, Mankind, all life forms, the material universe, the spiritual universe and the Supreme Being.
Scientology addresses the spirit-not the body or mind-and believes that Man is far more than a product of his environment, or his genes.
Scientology comprises a body of knowledge which extends from certain fundamental truths. Prime among these are:
Man is an immortal spiritual being.
His experience extends well beyond a single lifetime.
His capabilities are unlimited, even if not presently realized.
Scientology further holds Man to be basically good, and that his spiritual salvation depends upon himself, his fellows and his attainment of brotherhood with the universe.
Scientology is not a dogmatic religion in which one is asked to accept anything on faith alone. On the contrary, one discovers for oneself that the principles of Scientology are true by applying its principles and observing or experiencing the results.
The ultimate goal of Scientology is true spiritual enlightenment and freedom for all.
"Sometimes others seek to crush one down, to make nothing out of one's hopes and dreams, one's future and oneself.
"By ridicule and many other means, another who is evil-intentioned toward one can try to bring about one's decline.
"For whatever reason, efforts to improve oneself, to become happier in life, can become the subject of attacks.
" It is sometimes necessary to handle such directly. But there is a long-range handling that seldom fails.
"What, exactly, are such people trying to do to one? They are trying to reduce one downward.
"They must conceive that one is dangerous to them in some way: that if one got up in the world, one could be a menace to them. So, in various ways, such seek to depress one's talents and capabilities.
"Some madmen even have a general plan that goes like this: If A becomes more successful, A could be a menace to me; therefore I must do all I can to make A less successful." It never seems to occur to such that their actions might make an enemy out of A even though he was no enemy before. It can be classed as an almost certain way for such madmen to get into trouble. Some do it just from prejudice or because they "don't like someone."
"But however it is attempted, the real object of such is to make their target grow less and fail in life.
"The real handling of such a situation and such people, the real way to defeat them is to flourish and prosper.
"Oh, yes, it is true that such people, seeing one improve his lot, can become frantic and attack all the harder. The thing to do is handle them if one must but don't give up flourishing and prospering,for that is what such people want you to do.
"If you flourish and prosper more and more, such people go into apathy about it: they can give it up completely."
That's right, Jimmy, if the facts don't fit your argument, then change them. "...we're opening new centers all the time. Tel Aviv in Israel is next", you said. That's a bit different from reopening an old center amidst much controversy, after it burnt down under suspicious circumstances. But if the truth does not suit you, then you must try to remodel it.
Yes, Jimmy, when you are fresh out of ideas, quote the prophet RON. "Flourish and prosper", he says, that'll show `em. So here you are in your late fifties, admitting in your blog that you have accumulated significant debt, and what do you do? Why, you spend large amounts of money on further Scientology courses. Good thinking. Come back in twelve months and describe how you've flourished and prospered as a result.
Peter, the center is new. Semantic quibble. I don't expect agreement from you but think about it. In town we had an old shopping center. Most of it was torn down, save the facade. The guts and the surrounds were updated, some rebuilt, and brought up to code. Now it's a new shopping center. If you want to say it's still old but remodeled then so be it. It's just semantics. New is new.
You seem delighted with your new-found phrase, "semantic quibble". Henceforth, whenever you are challenged for making an untrue statement, you can simply respond, "semantic quibble". I expect to see it quite often.
But try as you might, Jimmy, the fact that the cult had to rebuild a burnt-down building is not proof that "Scientology is the fastest growing religion on earth".
Of course I understood your analogy. It was stupid.
If the sales figures for the new shopping center were the fastest growing sales figures on Earth, would the developers keep them a closely-guarded secret? No, they would proclaim them from the rooftops. It's odd that your cult claims to be the fastest growing on Earth, yet refuses to say how many members it has.
OK. Looks like I was wrong on the Tel Aviv center being renovated. They got a new building. Here's the actual quote so there's no mistake. You can check their website too. I conveniently left a link:
Welcome to the Center of Scientology of Israel.
Since 1980, we have been honored to serve a growing congregation in Tel Aviv. It is with great pride we now extend our help across this land from our new home in Jaffa's historic Alhambra Theater. Our Center realizes Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard's vision for what he termed Ideal Organizations (Orgs).