Scientology is an organization that believes, at its core, that humans have far more potential than we can understand, given our current poor state of existence. This belief is coupled with the belief that we can improve ourselves, provided we don't continue to look at the human race as another form of animal or physical mechanism. Scientology teaches that one must regard a human as a spiritual being in order to fully understand what kind of composite mankind really is. And societies have fallen where they have left this important component out of the equation.

Scientology is not an easy path to follow, for it attempts to make people more responsible and more ethical by getting them to deal with those personal issues most people have decided to bury and try to ignore. By their very definition, these are uncomfortable things to bear. But the Church of Scientology (COS) believes they can be dealt with, and in a very scientific reproducible way.

The term Scientology is taken from the Latin word scio (knowing in the fullest meaning of the word), and the Greek word logos (study of). By its definition, Scientology attempts to teach people how to learn. To give people the tools to be better at examining information given to them and deciding what is relevant and what is not. Ultimately teaching people to be better skeptics. One of the major mottoes of the church is "What is true, is true to you." Meaning that, if anything doesn't make sense to you, it's not going to be a concept you can do anything real with. Going through the motions is pointless. If you don't get a better understanding of life and how things work on this planet out of it, there is no point in studying it. And they stand by this principle.

Scientology has proven to be able to raise intelligence and regain native abilities to people. This is accomplished by getting people to deal with their own selves and past experiences. COS believes that all the troubles you see around you in the world are the result of ourselves. This is obvious. But they teach that this trouble is not our true selves, it is the product of the reactive mind. This is a Scientology concept that experiences which have threatened, or appear to have threatened our survival in the past can become "stuck" in our minds. And when new situations come along that approximate similar conditions, we can suddenly find ourselves reacting in a kind of preprogrammed way, rather than how we normally would. Certain situations can cause a person to become enraged, even though, looking back on the situation, we agree that that reaction usually does more harm to the initial situation. This is an example of the reactive mind deciding our actions, maybe just for a moment, but truthfully, most people walk around in a semi-state of this most of the time. Most people are reacting and not acting.

I have been an on-again-off-again member of the COS for 5 years now. I, being human, have my own problems and issues to deal with, and the off-again nature of my relationship to the church is just my own stubbornness. It has never had to do with anything the church has said or done that I thought was bogus or beyond belief. That being said, I have also not seen any of this material that I see on websites as to the "upper level" of information. If it does exist at upper levels, then the road I have been taking with the church has only led me more and more to a point where I would be able to examine what they are saying and tell them "bullshit!"

I have seen real improvements in my life. And I have seen this in others also. I have seen people come into the church in a condition most people would label introverted or bordering on anti-social, and I have seen drastic improvements. Courses I have been taking there always seem to deal with providing me a new way of seeing life and what is important in it. The primary thing being communication with others, because that is the core of what life is about. And the one thing most people have the most trouble with. I have taken some courses on different aspects of communication and they have helped me immensely. But I have never had one piece of dogma shoved on me or been told that I have to believe any specific thing or else I am not really "in the church".

There has been no doubt that the Church has been an adversary to Psychiatry, believing that the problems should be handled rather then their symptoms be medicated. And this has led to a bit of a war. Especially when you see actual numbers on how much money the pharmaceutical industry is bringing in each year. And this is growing by leaps and bounds. Remember when there wasn't any psychotropic drug commercials on TV? But I digress. There is a very real campaign going on to pull in more consumers. But don't confuse Scientology with Christian Scientists. Scientology knows that medical problems must be handled by a qualified physician. They have found that many problems, however, stem from "a troubled soul/spirit" (my words), and can be handled through spiritual means. And this view will always create doubters and enemies when there is much vested interest in seeing people as just chemical reactions that need a little tweaking. In my time in the church, which has gone beyond the "entry level", I have seen no church business that looks even a little strange. Just people wanting to help people with techniques that seem to work over and over again. Even after decades of testing. The best answer about what is Scientology, logically, comes from the source. I am just paraphrasing some of L. Ron Hubbard's words and I'm sure with a little work even what I have said here could be taken out of context or twisted. I would invite anyone to explore what it has to offer and make up their own mind. Fortunately, through the sacrifice of countless others, we live in a country where we are free to do this.