Monday, February 25, 2008

Out of (Cruise) Control

OK, let me state up front that all of my knowledge about Scientology comes from an episode of "South Park." That and wikipedia. Not that I haven't had a chance to learn first hand -- there's a Scientology temple/mosque/church/labor camp right up the street from where I used to work -- but for all of my religious tourism, I never had the balls to go into that building. I was afraid I'd come out in a brown tunic and no pupils (and really no balls).

But maybe that's because I don't know any Scientologists -- or anyone rich and famous enough to be one. OK, that's flawed logic since I know TONS of Christians and some of them scare me, but at least I've gone in their places of worship without fearing a mind wipe and/or anal probe (actually as long as the mind wipe came AFTER the anal probe, I guess I'd be alright with that).

It doesn't help that Scientology is so damn secretive. Call them what you like but Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses will come to your door espousing their brand of crazy. Now, you don't have to answer the door, but they're willing to talk . . . alot.

But scientology is the one religion where you have to go fucking Sherlock Holmes to find out anything (or watch South Park like me). From what I understand, you have to pass all these tests and reach a certain level before they drop the Xenu story on you. I can't tell it better than South Park (so watch it here)but if you prefer my words to theirs (who wouldn't?) here we go: Long time ago, in a galaxy, far, far away . . . (seriously) there was an evil alien ruler named Xenu froze aliens from other planets and cast them into Hawaiian volcanos using spaceships that look like American airplanes. When their souls escaped . . . OK, you get it right? No? Good, if you did you'd be a Scientologist.

But it sort of makes sense that you have to sell a million bars of soap before you get this doozy of a story. As a video game player, I understand the logic of logging tons of hours completing tasks so you can unlock new powers and knowledge. I also understand that, like Scientology, games are created by sci-fi geeks who literally make shit up as they go along.

Having said that, stories like Noah's Arc are no more believable than Xenu and the soul catcher story but we've been living with them so long we kinda forget and forgive those who believe it (well I don't, but you know).

Anyway, I say all this because there's video of Tom Cruise talking about his faith in Scientology and everyone is falling over themselves to make fun of him. And yes, jumping on Oprah's couch is weird and so is marrying Katie Holmes but is his Xenu story that much crazier than Jonah living in a whale? If he was on there professing how he believed some guy raised a man from the dead and walked on water, some of us would be proud that he's not afraid to show his spiritual side.

I think Scientology's biggest problem is that one on hand their all hush-hush about their beliefs but then sue people for slandering them. Dude, if you believe there's a volcano in Hawaii with alien corpses in them, PROCLAIM THAT SHIT! There are people running our government who think a dude separated the Red Sea with a stick. As a matter of fact, we won't let anyone who DOESN'T believe that a man can fit two of every animal on a boat run this country.

Now who's crazy?