Re: Scientology

From: Keith Henson (
Date: Sat Jan 26 2002 - 08:23:03 GMT

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    From: Keith Henson <>
    Subject: Re: Scientology
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    At 10:30 AM 25/01/02 -0800, "Dace" <>
    > > >It's difficult to understand, given your belief in universal

    I certainly believe that a lot of people *can* be highly influenced--to the
    point most would say their lives were very unsatisfactory--by memes or
    other people generally acting under the influence of memes. But I
    certainly don't think this is good.

    > > >why you're at war with the Church of Scientology.
    > >
    > > They offend me.
    > >
    > > Keith Henson
    >Thanks. That's the answer I was looking for.
    >Since you don't believe in free will,

    Didn't I say we are wired up to act and think as if we had free will? The
    fact that logical arguments make it look like everything including what
    goes on in our brains is either caused by something else or the result of a
    random process makes no more operational difference in the real world than
    the debate outcome (whatever it was) about how many angles can dance on a pin.

    Incidentally, does it make a difference if I feel the Net (and Net people
    such as me) are destined to take down scientology or if acts of free will
    are leading to the same end?

    >there's no rational basis for your
    >opposition to mind-stealing cults.

    Don't forget, people can come up with rational reasons for
    anything. People are more rationalizing than truly rational.

    >It's a purely emotional reaction.

    You can make the case that all motivations are emotional or at least based
    in the brain's reward systems.

    >You're playing the role of the hero who fights off the vicious predators (in
    >this case, clams) that prey on his people.

    This is certainly a role evolution has shaped people to accept. I
    understand that people, including me, are biased to activities that give
    them status in the community. Though in this case, the predator is a mind

    >Rather than being a meme in
    >itself, the hero complex determines which memes you accept and which ones
    >you reject.

    I think a more accurate way would be to say activities rather than memes.

    >If it doesn't serve to demonize the enemy, it gets filtered

    Perhaps this would be the case for most people. My dominant reaction, and
    this is well established, is to pity these people. Of course I am
    interested in ending the scam so fewer people get hurt by them, and more
    important, the government is no longer corrupted by them. Memetics gives
    me a calmer outlook on the whole thing. Also this is not my first fight
    with a cult.

    >The greater the evil of the enemy, the greater the glory obtained in
    >fighting it.

    Naturally, but in fact the scientologists have amazed people for years in
    this respect. No matter how bad you think they are, reality turns out to
    be worse. Look up what they did to Paulette Cooper. How about sending a
    young woman (Stacy Moxon) into a hot transformer vault? Tying a woman to a
    bed till she died of dehydration? There are long lists of such deaths,

    >You need Scientology as much as anti-communists needed the
    >Soviet Union. The cult and the countercult aren't so much opposites as
    >mirror images of each other.

    Actually, I would do just *fine* without them. There are plenty of other
    causes in the world, many of them far more interesting. This is just one
    of those jobs where someone has to do it.

    Keith Henson

    PS, there is nothing to prevent anyone from stepping onto the stage in this
    soap opera and hundreds have done it.

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