Meet a Scientologist

The Church of Scientology seems to have a new PR strategy.

In recent weeks, I’ve gotten a bunch of emails asking readers to “meet a Scientologist.” Then I can read a brief introduction to an individual and what brought him or her to Scientology.

It turns out that the church has 200 or so profiles on its website, complete with videos.

It’s often been said if a new or little-understood group of people want to be “accepted” by the mainstream, the key is for  people to get to know individuals. I guess the Church of Scientology is taking this tack.

One profile is of 28-year-old Ryan Rieben, a Michigan firefighter, who says he looked into Scientology because all Scientologists he knows are doing well. He says: “I bought a Dianetics book. It made sense. I went to the Church to check it out and I have been involved ever since. I found out that what I suspected was true—Scientology does help you accomplish your goals.”

At the heart of Scientology, founded by the late science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard (that’s him), is “dianetics,” a system of teaching and actions that is supposed to help people overcome negative experiences stored in the mind.

I also got a release addressing the question of how Scientologists celebrate the holiday season.

It says, in part:

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Because the Scientology religion is practiced in 165 countries and territories, Scientologists come from a wide variety of faiths and cultural traditions, so observances of the holidays are as diverse as Scientologists are.

But no matter their religious or cultural tradition, Scientologists observe the holidays in a manner similar to the members of all other religions: they gather with their loved ones, whether they observe Christmas, Chanukah, Yule or Kwanzaa, enjoying the warmth of friends and family and celebrating the joy and love of the season.

No matter their religious or cultural tradition, Scientologists embody the spirit of the season as expressed in the universal message, “Peace on Earth and goodwill toward men.”

Scientologists live by a code which includes: “To use the best I know of Scientology to the best of my ability to help my family, friends, groups and the world.” During the holiday season, Scientologists are especially active in this respect, volunteering in a wide range of endeavors to improve the lives of individuals and the community and bring joy to those who may need assistance.