Scientology Sunday Funnies: RON the Encyclopedia -- THE VIDEO!
Scientologists don't really have a Sunday service. They like to say that they do, because they crave mainstream acceptance. But unless Xenu rested after six days and L. Ron Hubbard just forgot to mention it, there's no reason for Scientologists to treat Sunday any differently than every other day of coursework, detoxes, fundraising, and generally clearing the planet.
So here at the Voice, we've come up with a Scientology Sunday tradition of our own, and we call it Sunday Funnies! Our sources regularly send us Scientology's wacky and tacky fundraising mailers, and each week we choose a few of them to gaze upon, hoping that it inspires you to wax eloquent in our comments section. So here we go...
Last week, we broke news of Scientology's exciting new way to soak its members -- Ron, the Encyclopedia! Yes, Britannica may have given up the ghost, but Scientologists will no doubt be shelling out $720 each for this amazing 16-volume set all about L. Ron Hubbard's life. And this week, we have the promotional video! Check it out...
Those first three assertions -- I can't get enough of them.
HE LIVED MORE THAN TWENTY LIVES IN THE SPAN OF ONE
Well, OK, but by Scientology reckoning he was supposed to have lived like a quadrillion other times all over the galaxy, so what's 20 little lives here on Earth? Chump change.
HE LIVED IT FROM THE TOP DOWN AND THE BOTTOM UP
For our readers who remember the excerpts from Hubbard's "Affirmations," this assertion is problematic, to be sure.
IT'S BEEN LIVED -- IT CANNOT BE UNLIVED
Say WHAT? That one really has me stumped. I mean, If one of our readers can possibly make sense of what it means to say that L. Ron Hubbard's life cannot be unlived, please, help me out here.
Anyway, I want this set of books so bad I can taste it. So for any of you librarians out there who get hit up with this, please take a copy so you can ship it to me! I promise to make good use of it (and you know I will).
That Sydney Org, always with the clever mailers. And this one really delights us. Here's some great piñata tech that should loosen up the wallets of any parishioner!
I can't quite put my finger on it, but something about this flier really creeps me out.
Californians, take pride in your status as the first entirely Ideal state! Can you feel the excitement?
Well, that's another very fun week here at Sunday Funnies. Please sound off in the comments and let us know whatever is occupying your mind these days in the realm of Scientology watching.
Tomorrow: with only a few weeks until this year's gala, we have an update on the Writers of the Future contest we wrote about recently.
Tony Ortega has been the editor in chief of the Village Voice since March, 2007. He started writing about Scientology in 1995. You can reach him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, and if you ask nicely he'll put you on his mailing list for notifications of new stories, which tend to come out each and every morning at 8 am, but can suddenly appear at any time of the day. You can also catch his alerts at Twitter (@VoiceTonyO), at his Facebook author page, on Pinterest, a Tumblr, and even this new Google Plus doohickey.
New readers might want to check out our primer, "What is Scientology?" Another good overview is our series from last summer, "Top 25 People Crippling Scientology." At the top of every story, you'll see the "Scientology" category which, if you click on it, will bring up all of our most recent stories. As for our regular features, on Thursdays we do a roundup of world press, on Fridays we visit L. Ron Hubbard on the yacht Apollo circa 1969-1971, on Saturdays we celebrate the week's best comments, and on Sundays we publish Scientology's wacky and tacky advertising mailers that people send us.
As for hot subjects we've covered here, you may have heard about Debbie Cook, the former church official who rebelled and is now being sued by Scientology. You might have also heard about the Super Power Building, Scientology's "Mecca," whose secrets were revealed here. We also reported how Scientology spied on its own most precious object, Tom Cruise. (We wrote Tom an open letter that he has yet to respond to.) Have you seen a Scientology ad on TV lately? We debunked some of the claims in that 2-minute commercial you might have seen while watching Glee or American Idol.
Other stories have looked at Scientology's policy of "disconnection" that is tearing families apart. You may also have heard something about the Sea Org experiences of the Paris sisters, Valeska and Melissa, and their friend Ramana Dienes-Browning. We've also featured Paulette Cooper, who wrote about Scientology back in the day, and Janet Reitman, Hugh Urban, and the team at the Tampa Bay Times, who write about it today. And there's plenty more coming.