Scientology inside and out
Madam, – Cian Traynor’s article on the Church of Scientology (Weekend Review, March 19th) was notable for a number of things, none of which, regrettably, was in the vicinity of balance or the establishment of a context in which a newer creed can be objectively viewed.
There was no attempt at analysis or comparison of the teachings, practices, philosophy or even creed of the church, just a series of interviews with five anti-Scientologists and myself (so much for balance!). As I was not told that The Irish Timeswas going to feature these malcontents I was not in a position to challenge what they said, nor was I given the opportunity to respond to what they claimed. To cap it all, even my comments were subject to out-of-context editing.
Scientology is by far the most successful contemporary religion. That of itself should be worthy of serious analysis, and one would have thought that The Irish Times(“the paper of record”) would be up to the task.
For example, why do Scientologists fund the largest NGO network of drug rehab facilities in the world? Why do Scientologists fund the largest human rights information distribution network in the world? Why are so many Scientologists artists? What is the Scientology concept of salvation? Why is it growing so fast? And so on.
These are not difficult questions to pose in any objective article, but they would require the contemplation of the possibility, just the possibility, mind, that Scientology might have something to offer, and might represent a paradigm of spirituality not seen hitherto. Such a “shocking” concept is clearly a challenge too far for The Irish Times. – Yours, etc,