2003 Kingdom of the Cults
L. Ron Hubbard
The founder of Scientology, Lafayette Ronald Hubbard (L. Ron Hubbard, affectionately called “Ron” by Scientologists), was born on March 13, 1911, in Tilden, Nebraska. Hubbard, a popular science fiction writer of the 1930s and 1940s, changed venues midstream by announcing at a New Jersey science fiction convention, “Writing for a penny a word is ridiculous. If a man really wanted to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion.” The following year, in May 1950, Hubbard released Dianetics: A Modern Science of Mental Health, which has become entry-level reading for converts to Scientology. Hubbard’s overnight success with Dianetics virtually gave him a new career in writing self-help and religious books. His first book on Scientology was published in 1951, and the Church of Scientology in California was incorporated on February 18, 1954.
Building a global religion of six million adherents (perhaps 200,000 active) in a few decades was no small victory for Mr. Hubbard, whose abilities should not be underestimated. His claim to fame as a writer includes fifteen million published words in science fiction, essays, and articles. He supersedes this with twenty-five million published words for Scientology. Mr. Hubbard’s publishing achievements are notable, but his background upholds very few biblical Christian values, as we will see. He was raised on a small ranch near Helena, Montana, with four hometown churches, but his later cynicism of Christianity betrays his virtually faithless upbringing. His father served a career in the U. S. Navy, which allegedly afforded L. Ron Hubbard frequent travel abroad. He was also one of the youngest Eagle scouts in the history of the Boy Scouts of America. His books often carry a short biographical sketch of his accomplishments, also described in the Scientology Dictionary:
Hubbard’s academic degrees have come under question since Sequoia University was discovered to be an unrecognized diploma mill located in a two-story house in Los Angeles. It was closed down in 1958 by an act of the California Legislature.
It is true that he attended George Washington University for two years. He was placed on academic probation, as he said, for “some very poor grade sheets.” Although there are times he calls himself a “nuclear physicist,” he failed his only class on molecular and atomic physics. He also spent three months in a military course at the Princeton School of Military Government. Nothing has yet surfaced to confirm his alleged degree from Columbian College.
The success of Hubbard’s writing skills cannot be argued. The manuscript for Dianetics (180,000 words) was supposedly completed in three weeks’ time. Those who knew him said that he could type ninety words per minute with the old two-finger method. He had an altered typewriter with special keys for often used words, such as “and,” “the,” and “but.” His personal qualifications as a religious leader were everything but saintly. His first two marriages were disastrous. His second wife, Sara Northrup Hubbard, sued him for divorce on April 23, 1951, in Los Angeles County Superior Court. The microfilm copy of that case mysteriously vanished from the court records. However, an industrious St. Petersburg Times newspaper reporter found the original in storage at the courthouse. It was a twenty-eight page complaint to dissolve their Chestertown, Maryland, marriage of August 10, 1946. This was a bigamous marriage for Mr. Hubbard. He pretended to be a bachelor to Miss Northrup, yet he had not divorced his first wife, Margaret Grubb Hubbard. His first marriage was not legally dissolved until over one year after his second marriage. His second wife’s 1951 divorce allegations contained more than bigamy charges. She claimed sleep deprivation, beatings, strangulation, kidnapping of their child and fleeing to Cuba, and Ron counseling her to commit suicide, “if she really loved him.” The kidnapping was reported in several newspapers in 1951.
Sara Northrup had first met Hubbard through a Pasadena-based occult group led by Jack Parsons, a disciple of the late Alister Crowley, whose alias was “The Beast 666.” Crowley was a leading Satanist, sorcerer, and black magician. He founded the Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO), which promoted sexual magick. At its New York headquarters, the group’s historical records include letters between Parsons and Crowley that mention Hubbard several times. Northrup was Parsons’s girlfriend when they both met L. Ron Hubbard. As Parsons’s partner, she represented the Babylonian woman in Revelation, chapter 17, in the New Testament. Before she could fulfill Parsons’s plan, Hubbard swept her away in an out-of-state bigamous marriage (representing himself as a bachelor the entire time). In Parsons’s letters he blamed Hubbard for taking her from him.
Scientology defends Hubbard’s connection to the Parsons black magick cult by stating that he went undercover to infiltrate it on orders of the Naval Intelligence. Supposedly, several prominent scientists were visiting Parsons’s OTO temple, and Ron’s job was to shut it down. Jack (John Whiteside) Parsons was a noted rocket scientist, but the explanation presented by Hubbard seems far-fetched. It lacks rationalization for why an undercover agent would soil the operation with a bigamous marriage. No record has ever been produced to prove that Naval Intelligence hired Hubbard for such an operation.
Hubbard’s working knowledge of black magic and the occult satisfied Parsons. In one letter he wrote to Crowley he speaks highly of Ron’s knowledge of the rituals. The Bible, however, condemns occult practices as abominable, and God says that He will cut off the participants from His presence (Deuteronomy 18:9–12).
The resources claimed by Hubbard for Dianetics include, “the medicine man of the Goldi people of Manchuria, the shamans of North Borneo, Sioux medicine men, the cults of Los Angeles, and modern psychology. Among the people questioned about its existence were a magician whose ancestors served in the court of Kublai Khan and a Hindu who could hypnotize cats. Dabbles had been made in mysticism, data had been studied from mythology to spiritualism.”
Hubbard’s third marriage, to Mary Sue Whipp, lasted the rest of his lifetime. She captivated worldwide attention, in 1977, as the mastermind behind a sinister covert operation against various levels of the United States government that could rival a spy novel. Hubbard was living in California at the time, but his impenetrable shield prevented direct connection with the illegal activities.
Hubbard spent his final years in seclusion from the public eye. Top Scientologists isolated him from most family and church members until his death in Creston, California (a small town north of San Luis Obispo). According to a copy of his death certificate, he succumbed to a cerebral vascular accident (stroke) on January 24, 1986. In their refusal to believe that such a great “science of the mind” master could die a horrific death, the word “dead” or “died” was never used at his eulogy. Scientologists announced that L. Ron Hubbard decisively “discarded the body” to move onto the next level of research, outside his body. How this new research would become available to planet earth is left unsaid. Hubbard himself apparently encouraged an examination of his belief system such as that undertaken in this volume. The seventh article of the Creed of Scientology states, “All men have the inalienable rights to think freely, to talk freely, to write freely on their own opinions and to counter or utter or write upon the opinion of others.” If they hold faithful to their creed, they should expect counter writings. With this, we counter the opinions of L. Ron Hubbard.
When L. Ron Hubbard mentions Jesus Christ, it is rarely in reverence and mostly with disparagement. A few lines previously, we saw that Mr. Hubbard refused to believe in the Christian Christ. Implants are false concepts forced upon a Thetan, and Scientology chalks up “Christ” as an implant more than a million years ago. He wrote, “You will find the Christ legend as an implant in pre-clears a million years ago.”
Mr. Hubbard casts doubt upon the uniqueness of Jesus as the Messiah. His Phoenix Lectures state, “Now the Hebrew definition of Messiah is one Who Brings Wisdom—a Teacher. Messiah is from ‘messenger’. Now here we have a great teacher in Moses. We have other Messiahs, and we then arrive with Christ, and the words of Christ were a lesson in compassion and they set a very fine example to the Western world.” It does not take a great deal of biblical knowledge to refute Hubbard here, for many young students in Christian churches are aware that the Hebrew definition for Messiah is “anointed.” It does not come from “messenger,” but from “to rub” or “anoint.” Hubbard proves his ignorance of Hebrew and Christian terminology, which may suggest his disdain toward what he never understood.
The Church of Scientology teaches that Jesus Christ may have believed in reincarnation: “There is much speculation on the part of religious historians as to the early education of Jesus of Nazareth. It is believed by many authorities that Jesus was a member of the cult of the Essenes, who believed in reincarnation. ” Hubbard attributes Hindu teachings to Jesus. “Christ,” he wrote, “was a bringer of information. He never announced his sources. He spoke of them as coming from God. But they might just as well have come from the god talked about in the Hymn to the Dawn Child the Veda.” Hubbard looks down upon Jesus from his OT VIII position, claiming, “Neither Lord Buddha nor Jesus Christ were OT, according to the evidence. They were just a shade above clear.”
Let us remember that the apostle Peter dealt with Hubbardian theories long ago. Peter, denying any mythology or legend to Christ, said, “We have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty” (2 Peter 1:16). Jesus also denied anyone could be the Messiah other than himself (Matthew 24:3–5, 11). He unashamedly said, “No man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Luke settles the idea of multiple ways of salvation in Acts 4:12, “For there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
Jesus was not a man looking for salvation with the rest of humanity. He was sinless (John 8:46; 1 Peter 2:22) and had no need to be “a shade above clear.” He fully announced His sources (Luke 24:44), which have nothing to do with the Essenes nor the Vedas. In the Bible He is seen as an eternal, active person (Micah 5:2) who is one with the Father (John 10:30) and the second person of the Trinity (Matthew 28:19).
Scientologists prefer to use the term “rebirth” instead of “reincarnation,” although reincarnation is found in their writings. Hubbard emphasized that salvation is to be free from the endless cycle of birth and rebirth. The way to salvation is to erase engrams through auditing. The proof to many Scientologists that they release engrams through auditing is the accompanying sign. “When one releases an engram,” Hubbard wrote, “the erasure is accompanied by yawns, tears, sweat, odor, panting, urine, vomiting, and excreta.”
Scientology’s view of reincarnation includes extraterrestrial life, evolution on other planets, evolution on earth, implant stations, forgetter implants, and engrams that keep people trapped in reincarnation. The OT III, section three, material was entered into court cases, from which we find Hubbard’s journey of the Thetan. He claims this discovery was in December 1967:
[The result of Hubbard’s investigation into this formerly undiscovered data was that] one’s body is a mass of individual Thetans stuck to oneself or to the body. Thetans believed they were one. This is the primary error by [a] BODY THETAN is meant a Thetan who is stuck to another Thetan or body but is not in control. A CLUSTER is a group of body Thetans crushed or held together by some mutual bad experience.
Hubbard tells them that some of these body Thetans have been asleep on their Thetan for seventy-five million years. Ridding it makes the body Thetan as sort of a cleared being. Hubbard also believes he went back four quadrillion years ago (give or take a few years).
These incarnations and reincarnations are the supposed dilemma of the Scientologist. Reincarnation is answered in Hebrews 9:27: “It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” Biblically, we live and die once. We have no preexistence in other bodies and we did not come from outer space. Jesus denied preexistent souls for people. “Ye are from beneath; I am from above: you are of this world; I am not of this world” (John 8:23). We find that reincarnation does not fit into God’s plan of salvation. Jesus’ death upon the cross would be unnecessary if reincarnation were true. Nevertheless, we find that Jesus was foreordained as the “Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8). Jesus’ sermons on heaven and hell would be a lie if reincarnation were true. But we find that Jesus always spoke the truth (Hebrews 4:15). Jesus’ bodily resurrection from the tomb refutes reincarnation, since He resurrected to the same body (John 20:27). “He showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3; see also 1 Corinthians 15:1–8). The resurrection of Jesus is proof that His grace will save us who place our trust in Him for our salvation. Every Christian has what every Scientologist is looking for—that is, salvation.
Scientology speaks of a Supreme Being, God, and gods, without telling its members in which, if any, to believe. In The Scientology Catechism, it says, “What is the Scientology concept of God? We have no dogma in Scientology and each person’s concept is different. Each person attains his own certainty as to who God is and exactly what God means to him. The author of the universe exists. How this is symbolized is dictated by your early training and conscience.” Pages 197–220 contain the entire printed version of The Scientology Catechism. They further teach, “although the existence of the Supreme Being is affirmed in Scientology, His precise nature is not delineated, since the Church holds that each person must seek and know the Divine Nature in and for himself.” They address God in the monotheistic sense in many places, yet Hubbard also speaks of the activity of gods elsewhere. Their Articles of Incorporation (2.h) states, “Believing that Man’s best evidence of God is the God he finds within himself the Church of Scientology is formed to espouse such evidence of the Supreme Being and Spirit as may be knowable to Men.” Hubbard, then, finds no contradiction in promulgating polytheism. In his Phoenix Lectures, he indiscriminately allowed for monotheism or polytheism: “Let us take up what amounts to probably ten thousand years of study on the part of Man, on the identity of God or gods. ” He also exposes false gods commingled with true gods. “There are gods above all other gods,” he wrote. “There is not argument here against the existence of a Supreme Being or any devaluation intended. It is that amongst the gods, there are many false gods elected to power and position. There are gods above other gods, and gods beyond the gods of the universes.” Furthermore, he wrote a hymn stating, “There can be love for Gods.” And, “Behave[,] Obey[,] Be Courteous[,] To gods[,] Lord Buddha[,] And myself[,] And to your leaders ”
Their book on world religion leaves little doubt that the Hindu Brahman is closely paralleled with Scientology’s understanding of the Supreme Being. God is spoken of in terms of Hinduism. Though Hubbard provides no strict definition of the Supreme Being, his descriptive characteristics are enough for the Christian reader to see its unbiblical nature. Hubbard rejects the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. His Phoenix Lectures state, “The Christian god is actually much better characterized in the Vedic Hymns [Hinduism] than in any subsequent publication, including the Old Testament.” Again, he said, “The god the Christians worshipped is certainly not the Hebrew god. He looks much more like the one talked about in the Veda.” What he mistakenly assumed is that the Hindu “triad” is the basis for the Christian “Trinity.” This is not historical or biblical. The Trinity is based solely upon the revelation of God’s Word, as noted in chapter 5, page 101. Hubbard also wrote, “For a long while, some people have been cross with me for my lack of cooperation in believing in a Christian Heaven, God, and Christ. I have never said I didn’t disbelieve in a Big Thetan but there was certainly something very corny about Heaven et al.”
Scientologists are taught by Hubbard that man is part God and can attain a “godlike” nature. He wrote, “A pre-clear is a precise thing, part animal, part pictures, and part God.” In Hubbard’s evolutionary development of Homo sapiens, he teaches that man will evolve into “,” described as “very high and godlike.”
Scripture denies the possibility of other gods besides the true God. There is but one God (Deuteronomy 4:39; 6:4; Isaiah 43:10; 44:8; Mark 12:32; Ephesians 4:6; 1 Timothy 2:5; and James 2:19).
The Bible always presents a sharp distinction between God and man. Scripture reminds us in Numbers 23:19, “God is not a man, that he should lie.” Hosea 11:9 says, “I am God, and not man, the Holy One in the midst of thee.” A study of God’s omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience truncates the words of Hubbard (1 Samuel 2:3; 1 Kings 8:27; Job 42:2; Jeremiah 23:24; 32:17; Romans 11:33).
W. M. Religious InfoNet ¤ Box 456 ¤ Forest Lake, MN 55025