Islam and Scientology

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Stefano B
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Islam and Scientology

Post by Stefano B » Sun Aug 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Hi -- I am writing a paper about the construction and perception of Islam in Scientology (esp. but not only in early Scientology).

I recently got an electronic copy of Advance! magazine N° 33 (July 1975) dedicated to Islam.

I would be most grateful if anybody could help me

(i) to purchase other Advance! issues (or intra-Scientology literature) dealing with Islam;

(ii) to get insights about Scientology's attitude towards Islam (esp. within the church i.e. besides official statements for non-Scientologists and PR strategies);

...and in general if anybody could provide me with further suggestions relevant to the topic (e.g. Scientology in Muslim countries, Muslim reactions to Scientology, LRH's statements about Islam, Scientology and 9/11).

Thanks,

Stefano B

https://itesm-mx.academia.edu/StefanoBigliardi

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:26 am

If you google "L. Ron Hubbard" + Mohammed, there will be some sanitized excerpts from the Church of Scientology itself, see http://www.scientology.org/faq/scientol ... -past.html
More revealing are the embarassing and insulting things he said, like
LRH mocks the prophet Mohammed by calling him a "small town booster". PDC #24. 9 December 1952:
"It's an enormous stone hanging suspended in the middle of a room, this is an incident called the Emanator by the way, and this thing is by the way the source of the Mohammedan Lodestone that they have hanging down there, that, eh, when Mohammed decided to be a good small-town booster in eh Kansas, Middle-East, or something of the sort. By the way, the only reason he mocked that thing up, is the trade wasn't good in his hometown. That's right. You read the life of Mohammed.
And he's got a black one and it sort of hung between the ceiling and the floor, I don't know, maybe they call it the Casbah or something or... Anyway, anyway, that thing is a mockup of the Emanator! The Emanator is bright, not black.
And so, your volunteer, who insists on a sightseeing trip, goes in and this thing is standing in the middle of the room, and it's going 'wong wong wong wong wong' and he says: "Isn't that pretty?". It sure is, and then he says "Mmmgrmrm ponk" Why, I'll tell you, they cart him from there, and they take him in and they do a transposition of beingness."
posted at http://www.xenu.net/archive/multimedia.html

My comment: In the above, L. Ron is talking about the Black Stone at Mecca in a most garbled way. I believe he skimmed through Will Durant's "Story of Civilization" which is a simplified and popularized eleven volume history of the world. Durant covered Mohammed and other religious founders. LRH spoke highly of Will Durant, but mangled whatever he read there and elsewhere.

CoS is actively courting The Nation of Islam in the United States. NOI would be irate to read what L. Ron said about Mohammed.

Stefano B
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 5:20 pm

Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Stefano B » Mon Sep 01, 2014 3:56 am

Hi Don Carlo,

thank you for your reply!

If I send you the Advance! article containing LRH's account of Islam, would you be able to identify whether the source is Will Durant's "history"? Can I also ask you what makes you think that that was his source? (You know... scholars are always obsessed with sources...).

While reading the article (that is not signed) I was surprised to see that it was factually correct (until the moment when the author starts sprinkling it with Scientology lingo) and I was also hypothesizing that the source could have been some kind of encyclopaedia.

Best,

Stefano

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:25 am

Durant's account of Mohammed is in Book 4: The Age of Faith. I don't have the book, but any library, and many second-hand bookstores would have it. Look in the table of contents for Islamic Civilization and read what it says about Mohammed.

I think this was the source, since most books about Islam then were either devout books, written for Islamic believers, or scholarly historical books written for other scholars. The Story of Civilization, rather, was a best-seller and widely sold to middle-brow people through the Book of the Month club. As a baby boomer, my generation was too young to buy the whole set of eleven HUGE books, but I have personally seen it proudly displayed in homes of (non-Scientologist) people born in the 1920's, 1930's and 1940's.

Stefano B
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Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 5:20 pm

Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Stefano B » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:30 am

Thank you -- you are fantastic!! I am based in Mexico City but I will do my best to purchase a copy or to have someone peruse that for me.
See also my private message.
Btw I think I wrongly posted this under "feedback and help", so sorry -- I am new here. how can I move my post??

/Stefano

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:45 am

Your post is fine here.
I have found five excerpts from The Age of Faith, Book 4 of The Story of Civilization.

Excerpts from Will Durant's The Age of Faith Pages 162-186 Pub. 1950
Koran: Form and Origins http://www.sullivan-county.com/x/koran_form.htm
Mohammed in Mecca http://www.sullivan-county.com/x/mecca.htm
Mohammed in Medina http://www.sullivan-county.com/x/medina.htm
Mohammed victorious http://www.sullivan-county.com/x/victory.htm
Islam and Science http://www.sullivan-county.com/x/is_durant.htm

Stefano B
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Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 5:20 pm

Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Stefano B » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:49 am

In addition to this I can copy-paste here the article about Islam contained in Advance! N° 33, July 1975.

It should be added that the front cover displays a picture allegedly taken (and staged) by LRH that (disrespectfully of Islamic tradition, and very amateurishly) is supposed to represent the Prophet receiving the Qur'an from the angels.

The article is unsigned. Only the footnotes could not be copied.

Under the article I add some notes I took right after reading it.

_____________________________________________________

THE WORD OF GOD

A booK, a revelation, the direct word of God! Few books have had as much impact on Man's imagination. It gave rise to one of the three most numerous international religions in history. Unlike the Christian Bible known almost entirely through translations, this book imposed its language on its inherents. Probably no book has been read by as many people in its original tongue. Every one of its 6,239 lines, 77,934 words and 323,621 letters has been reverently counted. From its beginning in a tiny city lost on a desert's edge, it gave rise to a war which within a hundred years had con- quered nearly half the civilized world, from Spain to the borders of China. More importantly, it inspired one of the great ages of civilization the world has seen whose influence sparked off the Renaissance in Europe. The religion the book founded had no priests or altars. But it proclaimed a prophet and postulated no other god but God. The religion? Islam. Its followers? Muslims. The God? Allah. The Prophet? Muhammad. And the Book? The Koran! Now let's clear up some terminology. In the West we have two terms: Mohammedism and Mohammedans. Both are incorrect. They are based upon the analogue1 of naming Chris- tianity and Christians after Christ. The people who embrace the Koran take exception to these terms. God, in the KoraJl, denominated 2 the religion Islam, meaning, literally, "submission to God's will." The adherents of Islam he called Muslims meaning "true be- lievers." Both terms derive from an Arabic word meaning "to be resigned or to resign." This is an important distinction. Muhammad was not regarded as divine- ly attributed. Rather, he was the human medium through which God trans- mitted his great book to Mankind. How did it happen that an illiterate trader from remote southwest Arabia could rise to such eminence? Let's go back and see! 1,375 years ago. Outside the cave the desert air is chilling. The stars are piercingly bright. Muhammad as is his wont is meditating inside the cave. Suddenly he hears a voice: "Recite! in the name of thy Lord, who hath created all things; who hath created man of congealed blood. Recite! by thy most benificent Lord; who taught the use of the pen; who teaches man that which he knows not." Muhammad recited! Initially Muhammad was in grave doubts concerning the source of there- velation. Was it a jinni?3 An evil spirit? Shortly afterwards a second vision came. Muhammad was so perturbed he rushed home and asked his wife to cover him over. At once these words "descended": "You that are wrapped up in your vestment,4 arise and give warning!" At first the voice of the messages varied, but eventually Muhammad iden- tified the archangel Gabriel as the principal source. These revelations con- tinued over a period of 32 years until Muhammad's death in the year 14 (A.D. 632) of the Arab calendar. Thus, according to the Koran Mu- hammad is not its author. Muhammad got it from the angels, particularly Gabriel, who recited it directly from God's own book in heaven. Muhammad in turn recited it to his followers. In Arabic, Koran means "the recitation." After his death it was realized that the new religious movement would dis- perse unless one authoritative Koran was compiled. This task fell to an associate of Muhammad, Zaid, who was in effect, the editor of God's book! Zaid collected up bits of the Koran written down by himself and others here and there. He collected memorized recitations. All in all he compiled the I I 4 separate revelations or surahs (chapters) of the Koran. Some have said it's easiest for Western readers to read the Koran back to front. This isn.'t just a cynical statement. Zaid compiled the surahs from longest to shortest. The longest surah begins the book and the shortest ends it! Thus, the surahs do not follow any chronological order although the shortest ones tend to be from the earliest period of revelation. Despite the later acceptance of the Koran, Muhammad met the fate of all genuine religious reformers. He was at first jeered, rebuked and attacked by the materialists and vested interests of his day. The Koran was an attempt to intro- duce a more spiritualized and less anthropomorphic concept of the 8th dynamic into the existing idol worship of the Arabic fol.k:. Muhammad accordingly forbad idol worship and to this day it is forbidden in Islam to represent God graphically in any form. In particular Mohammad was viewed as a threat to the revenue which poured into Mecca as the spiritual center of Arabian polytheism. Idol worship was big business in ancient Arabia, the AMA 5 of its day! Eventually Muhammad was driven out of his native city along with his closest followers. They took refuge in nearby Medina where the prophet was warmly welcomed. This Hegira (flight) from Mecca to Medina in 622 A.D. marks the beginning of the Islamic Age and is commemo- rated as year one of the Muslim calen- dar. From Medina the real expansion of Islam commenced. It is in Medina that the famous revelations exhorting a Jihad (holy war) against non-believers originated. "Make war on them (the unbelievers) until idolatry is no more and Allah's religion reigns supreme." "Prophet, rouse the faithful to arms." Muhammad vic- toriously led the first battles of the holy war himself. Within eight years Muhammad re- turned to Mecca in triumph. He paved the way not only by force of arms but by skillfully designating Mecca as his holy city and ordaining pilgrimage to Mecca as one of the principal lifetime duties of a Muslim. Thus the financial as well as the spiritual interests of the Meccans were assured.
Muhammad also consecrated the principal idol of pre-Islamic Arabs by commemorating it as Gabriel's gift to Abraham. Thus Muslims believed that this object was of extraterrestrial origin. Rightfully so. It's a black meteorite! Two years after the conversion of Mecca the Prophet died, honored and revered in his own country. Within I 00 years of his death Mu- hammad's famous formula
"Ia ilaha illa-'1/ah (There is no god but God!)
resounded from the towers of mosques from Spain to the borders of China! But this was a military and political, not a religious expansion. It was hun- dreds of years before the conquered peoples actually set aside their gods and submitted to Allah. Eventually, though, the Koran and the language of the Koran, Arabic, held sway along a great ribbon of the earth's surface. The term Arabic became inter- national in character describing the works of those who wrote in Arabic, be they Arabs from Arabia, Persians or Mongols. This Arabic civilization surged to greatness during the European Dark Ages. Before it burnt itself out it pro- vided the spark that lit the Christian Renaissance! In decline for centuries the Prophet's people have recently begun to re- awaken, but as a political and economic, not religious, force. Today it might be said that on some level the Jihad is being fought with oil! But Jet's go back again. How is it that Muhammad, an illiterate caravan leader, became a great religious teacher? We know that Muhammad led trade expeditions to Syria, that great natural crossroads between East and West, the same corridor along which Buddhist ideas passed centuries before to trans- form messianic Judaism into Chris- tianity. The receptive Muhammad as- similated the traditions then extant in the Middle East. He conceived of himself as the sue-cessor of the great Hebrew prophet~ including Jesus, through each of whom God had acted to reveal his message to Man. This line of succession and reve- lation was considered to culminate in Muhammad and the Koran. The insistent message of the Koran is that Allah sent Muhammad forth to warn mankind. "The righteous shall surely dwell in bliss. But the wicked shall burn in Hell-fire upon the Judge- ment Day: they shall not escape." But mere threats would not have been enough to fire the imagination of peoples. Western interpreters have uni- formly missed this point. Suddenly, almost miraculously without precedent or tradition, a higher philosopher ap- peared in the Arabic tongue. In the Koran we find the trans- mission of two basic truths of man's religious heritage.
1. Only the ethical will realize their true spiritual potential. In the vivid and threateningly aggressive language of the Koran this becomes: "For him that gives in charity and guards himself against evil and believes in goodness, We6 shall smooth the path of salvation; but for him that neither gives nor takes and disbelieves in goodness, We shall smooth the path of affliction." (God's chronic tone level in this work is from 1.5 - anger - to 2.0 - antagonism!) 2. Spiritual goals are senior to the craving for sensation or possessions. "Woe to all back-biting slanderers who amass riches and sedulously hoard them, thinking their treasures will ren- der them immortal! By no means! They shall be flung to the destroying flame!" ... "Yet you (the unbelievers) prefer this life, although the life to come is better and more lasting" ... "the life of this world is nothing but a fleeting vanity." But Islam and its book failed. Its bloody conflicts with the Christians, its wholesale massacre of defenceless Buddhist monks in India are but a few examples which belie its appeal to universal truth. Truth can only flow on a theta line. Truth by its very nature cannot be en- forced on others. It propagates because others find it true - and useful. Islam has long passed its zenith of expansion and today, in Islamic lands, the authority of the Koran itself is rapidly receding as it fails to provide answers to a space age world. Nevertheless, the Koran was an- other fascinating milestone in Man's relentless search for the solution to the riddle of his own destiny. At last, after ages and ages of searching, that solution has been found. A way exists by which man can dis- cover for himself the truth about him- self and his relationship to this universe. This way is guided, not by reve- lation, faith or belief, but by firm workable technology. After a long, long night Dianetics and Scientology have, indeed, brought the dawn!

_____________________________

My notes (first impressions):

Interestingly the article is essentially accurate and correct in its factual parts, albeit far from being deep or scholarly; it is formulated in a didactic + emphatic style typical of Scientology (plenty of exclamation marks, "difficult" terms explained in a footnote); it is deeply orientalist in the choice of pictures; after the punctual quotation of Qur'anic passages a rudimentary exegesis is attempted in typical Scientology parlance: ("God's chronic tone level in this work is from 1.5 - anger - to 2.0 - antagonism!"); it does not suffer from typical post 9/11 Islamophobic bias -- for instance a parallel is implied between Muhammad's Jihad and LRH's struggles, and there is no attempt at "exotifying" Islam i.e. at presenting it as completely different from Christianity; at the same time Islam is narrated as a failed religion that did not manage to cope with modernity.

I wonder who wrote it -- given the aforementioned correctness of the factual parts it must have been a member of Scientology based on a popular science work, most likely an encyclopaedia.

The front cover picture (allegedly by LRH himself) per se would deserve a whole article! (It is also interestingly in contradiction with the correct statement, occurring in the article, that traditionally a representation of the Prophet's face is not allowed).

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Mon Sep 01, 2014 3:30 pm

Thanks, Stephano. You are right about the Islamic taboo against showing an image of Mohammed's face - but that's Scientology's habit, of depicting philosophers and religious leaders as drawings, or as Scientologists in dress-up clothes. There had to be a "complete set" of images of Moses, Socrates, Jesus, etc., and Mohammed's face was just another image, probably created by a staffer ignorant of the taboo. Remember, Scientologists are trained to "know how to know" (meaning pull ideas out of their butts) but not to go to the library or the Internet to do research.

I guess the florid phrases are taken from some obscure pro-Muslim book, but edited to take out the "Peace Be Upon Him" which religious Muslims write next to Mohammed's name.* Even so, the pro-Muslim sentences are too uniquely Muslim in tone and details to be independently written by L. Ron Hubbard or his followers. The florid parts are edited to toss in some bald flattery, followed by bald criticism, and a plug for Scientology.

I tested some of the phrases on Google and got no hits, so whatever the source is, it's not easily found.

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Mon Sep 01, 2014 7:31 pm

The below is a rewrite of a 2012 post I made:
Will and Ariel* Durant have a top-down view, where powerful people control destiny, but the Durants (unlike L. Ron Hubbard) never are pro-authoritarian. They would have been appalled by the abuses of Scientology.

Will Durant started as a brilliant popularizer who followed the "great man" theory of history - that one tremendous man (and rare woman) after another "creates" history. He wrote books with wit and clarity, as easy to read as a novel. Made confident by enormous research and intelligence, Durant considered himself the final word on a topic. He wrote history as a pile of stories that he, the great researcher, has decided is the "right" telling of the story.

Will Durant's first The Story of Civilization book was Our Oriental Heritage, promoted by the Book of the Month club. Followed by The Life of Greece, Caesar and Christ, The Age of Faith, and seven more, they appeared on many, many bookshelves in the mid-20th Century. Reading any chapter in the set could give a non-college-educated person like L. Ron Hubbard a veneer of ideas and facts on Buddha, Socrates, Mohammed, etc. that would impress the typical American who had forgotten his high school history. L. Ron Hubbard being a narcissist, self-identified as the latest "great man" of history. Also, the approach that "this is the correct history because we say so" appears all the time in L. Ron's writing - there is NEVER a presentation of conflicting facts in any single paragraph. He will say contradictory things in different situations, but always presents himself as the expert, like Will Durant. And, he never admitted being wrong - his Piltdown Man "history" was written before it was exposed as a hoax, but it is still presented as fact in later editions of History of Man by L. Ron Hubbard.**

Today this top-down theory has to compete with others - for example Barbara Tuchman dug deep into letters and archives to find the voices of the times, and found middle-level people deeply influenced events (e.g. The Zimmerman Telegram. To her, history LIVES in the archives and the smart nobodies.

James Burke, in Connections and The Day the Universe Changed promoted another historical theory - that seemingly minor inventions and obscure, often inelegant thinkers made connections that change the world.

Leftist historians see history as the struggle of the oppressed, and appreciate inventions like public health but don't seem to care much about what triggers invention and progress. They focus on the underdog, whereas Durant has a few sentences about "women" in each chapter (which, honestly was admirably progressive for his time) and almost nothing on the poorest people.

Larry Gonick, author of Cartoon History of the Universe,presents historic figures as comical blunderers, opportunists and only occasionally heroes. Typical scene - after Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain expelled the Jews and grabbed their assets, Isabella said to Columbus,
You've got funding!
This authority-mocking book is closest to James Burke's theory that sluggish governments react to talented inventors, rather than the other way around. (A young relative in a high-school quiz competition passed around The Cartoon History of the Universe to her team, to prepare for the Ancient History competition, and her team won handily. This was after their history-teacher coach blessed the Cartoon book as well-researched).

A recent type of historian thinks natural disasters like large volcanic eruptions caused crop failures that led to Hun and Goth invasions and the fall of the Roman Empire. Whatever the cause, crop failures and droughts often coincide with events like the collapse of the Maya, the French Revolution, and even the present disaster in Syria. Similarly, the Salem witch trials may have started when ergot fungus in the grain, caused by cold wet weather, made some villagers act insane.

And finally, many historians today don't say "X happened exactly this way." They acknowledge that there may be several contradictory versions of the event, and are especially suspicious now of history written by the conquerors. Terry Jones, of Monty Python fame, wrote and narrated the series Terry Jones' Barbarians and gave us an insight that the non-Greeks and the non-Romans had many admirable qualities.

*Ariel Durant, Will's wife, co-authored the later books in The Story of Civilization.
** http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientolog ... ory_of_Man\

Stefano B
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Stefano B » Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:02 pm

Hi again,

I get of course the general analogy/affinity between the two authors, but can you quote any specific passage from LRH with which I can support the claim that he held Durant in great esteem?

Moreover, there is a piece of Scientology lingo in the article that I am not sure I can interpret correctly. What is it alluding to when it says "Idol worship was big business in ancient Arabia, the AMA 5 of its day!" ?

Thanks,

Stefano

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:26 pm

Google gives a lot of hits for "L. Ron Hubbard" + "Will Durant." Here are two.

1. Dianetics, The Modern Science of Mental Health by L. Ron Hubbard in 1950, was dedicated to Will Durant http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Library/Shel ... /bfm09.htm

2.
The first principle of my own philosophy is that wisdom is meant for anyone who wishes to reach for it. It is the servant of the commoner and king alike and should never be regarded with awe.

Selfish scholars seldom forgive anyone who seeks to break down the walls of mystery and let the people in. Will Durant, the modern American philosopher, was relegated to the scrapheap by his fellow scholars when he wrote a popular book on the subject, The Story of Philosophy.
from http://www.lronhubbard.org/articles-and ... sophy.html

For more quotes, just google the two names, Click on the hits one at a time, and when you get to the text do a "find" for "Durant." If you are on a Windows computer , do control-F and type Durant in the find box.

I read Durant's The Story of Philosophy as well as five of Durant's Story of Civilization books, and my opinion is that as usual L. Ron mangled what he read in any of Durants' books, and turned many events into an "informercial" for his own glorification. He mostly wanted to appear "scholarly" since he had read (some of ) Durant's books, but of course a true scholar would have been researching the source documents, preferably in the original Chinese, Sanskrit, Greek, Latin, Arabic, etc.

Don Carlo
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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Don Carlo » Tue Sep 01, 2015 2:46 am

Hubbard's garbled and insulting "history" of Mohammed may need a rewrite. See Carbon Dating Suggests World's Oldest Koran could be older than the Prophet Mohammed, at Raw Story today, http://www.rawstory.com/2015/08/carbon- ... -muhammad/

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Re: Islam and Scientology

Post by Scientology » Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:15 pm

Scientology is made by Anonymous since Hubbard removed the proper credentials and the value of their contribution and then relabel himself as the founder and creator. The name Scientology, the Engram, the E-Meter was there before...

There are many Similarities to Muhammad and Islam in everything from denial of the pre-muselmanic history. the square stone in the area before mecca. to the more extremist groups that destroys the heritages from pre-muselmanic times. The semantics structure of relabeling the valuables and mark it a thing made and perfected by the master is very common. The paranoia that creates the very enemy....
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