Here is my reply to a comment from Titch. He had the goodness to actually include his name and location in the post, which I appreciate because it says to me that here is someone who is willing to engage in a real dialog and not cower behind anonymity.
Titch: im 18years old and happy to say ive read everything i can get my hands on to do with scientology. Could you tell me which Scientology books you've read?
Titch: i believe we all look for answers to do with the universe and the meaning of life and so forth. but i cant help but think scientology isnt the answer. i do not wish to harm your faith or your beliefs but a man has a right to free speech in this world.
grahame: I have no problem with that. The right to believe as one decides for himself is a basic human right. (Human Right #18: Freedom of thought)
Titch then went on to relate a story that anti-Scientologists claim is the basis of Scientology.
grahame: That is not the basis of Scientology. Actual Scientology is what you read in the Basic Scientology Books. But even if that story were the basis of Scientology then we are just as entitled to believe it as you are to disbelieve it. Human Rights are a two way street. If you allow a right to others then you also get that right yourself. Take a right away from others and you lose it too.
Titch: i do not wish to harm your faith, or your beliefs. but i do not agree with your "religion" forcing scientology on everyone else. a man must make up his own mind about how he lives, and he must change in ways himself, not be indoctrinated into doing something because one of your fellow scientologist says so.
grahame: At this point I would make a guess that when you said "everything i can get my hands on to do with scientology", you didn't mean actual data on Scientology or what Scientologists do in the world (e.g., human rights, drug abuse, illiteracy, disaster relief) but that you have been reading anti-Scientology propaganda that accuses the Church and its members of all sorts of outrageous things. If you had read actual Scientology, then you'd know that it is not something you can "force" onto anyone and I personally don't know any Scientologist who would ever think of doing such a thing. Look at the bloodshed and suffering caused in the last couple of thousand years by people trying to force their beliefs onto others. Every person must make up his or her own mind when it comes to religion. There is a quote in this blog post, Scientology - What got me interested, from L. Ron Hubbard which says what the Scientology attitude is about forcing beliefs onto someone. Please take a look at it.
Titch: i also dont agree with the fact that as a religion you make people spend money to help themselves and become part of your community
grahame: Once again Titch, you have not been reading facts about Scientology. Please look at the posts on my site relating to the cost of Scientology. This should cover them: Scientology Donations, Why do you have to pay for Scientology?, Question about cost of Advanced Levels in Scientology, Questions regarding the cost of Scientology. And just to address what you said specifically: no one is "made" to spend money to help themselves or become Scientologists. If anyone told you this then you have been misinformed.
Titch: i will understand if you do not wish to approve my comment, but i wish people to know that all things in life has a choice and that covering up peoples right to free speech and indoctrinating them into your society is wrong, if people wish to join you, i say let them, but not by cohertion but by choice, and let it be free.
grahame: I absolutely agree with you. Something you have probably not read about Scientology in the places you've been looking, is that a person is not allowed to take part in Scientology services unless they are doing it under their own determinism. It's something that gets checked every time you start any course or counseling in Scientology. If you are there because someone made you then you can't do the service. You have to make up your own mind and decide you want to do it yourself.
Free speech is also looked upon as very important in Scientology. The right to free speech is actually part of the Creed of the Church of Scientology. If you have been told that Scientologists are somehow against free speech then you have been misinformed.
Thanks a lot for your questions. I do appreciate them. If you (or anyone else) have more questions then feel free to post them. See the link at the top of this page.