WHAT IS SCIENTOLOGY?
Scientology is a religion which recognizes that man is basically good and offers tools anyone can use to become happier and more able as a person and to improve conditions in life for himself and others, and to gain a profound understanding of the Supreme Being and his relationship to the Divine. Developed by L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology technology provides exact principles and a practical technology for improving spiritual awareness, self-confidence, intelligence and ability.
The word Scientology comes from the Latin word scio, meaning “know” and the Greek word logos, meaning “the word or outward form by which the inward thought is expressed and made known.” Thus, Scientology means knowing about knowing.
Scientology comprises a body of knowledge which extends from certain fundamental truths. Prime among these:
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 and his fellows and his attainment of brotherhood with the universe.
Scientology is not a dogmatic religion in which one is asked to believe anything on faith. An individual discovers for himself that Scientology works by applying its principles and observing or experiencing the results.
The ultimate goal of Scientology is true spiritual enlightenment and freedom for the individual.
Why is Scientology a religion?
Scientology meets all three criteria generally used by religious scholars when examining religions: (1) a belief in some Ultimate Reality, such as the Supreme Being or eternal truth that transcends the here and now of the secular world; (2) religious practices directed toward understanding, attaining or communicating with this Ultimate Reality; and (3) a community of believers who join together in pursuing the Ultimate Reality.
Scientology beliefs in an Ultimate Reality that transcends the material world include its concepts of the thetan, the spiritual world (the seventh dynamic) and the Supreme Being (the eighth dynamic). The second element can be found in Scientology’s life-rite ceremonies such as naming, marriage and funeral services, but predominantly in the religious services of auditing and training, through which Scientologists increase their spiritual awareness and attain an understanding of the spiritual world and, ultimately, their relationship with the Supreme Being. As to the third element, a very vital community of believers can be found at any church of Scientology at almost any time of the day.
Scientology is thus a religion in the oldest sense of the word. Scientology helps man become more aware of God, more aware of his own spiritual nature and that of those around him. Scientology Scripture recognizes that there is an entire dynamic (urge or motivation in life) devoted to the Supreme Being (the eighth dynamic) and another dynamic that deals solely with one’s urge toward existence as a spirit (the seventh dynamic). Acknowledgment of these aspects of life is a traditional characteristic of religions.