The Fraudulent and Persuasive Nature of Cults
There appears to be no better source of organized information on cults than what I have seen at the Rick Ross site.
Rather than try to devote the time to providing content myself, I recommend you visit there for an in-depth look at how people can lose not only their money, but themselves as well.
Also informative Cult Information.
When they complete one level of "training," the next level is supposed to be even better, but "around the next corner" never comes.
Those who reach the "top," after spending about $400,000, have never been able to demonstrate any of these promised conditions.
They even had the Fox network put an 800 number on the moving banner below the TV coverage of what happened on September 11, 2001, advertising mental health assistance (to make it look like a legitimate Mental Health Association ad), until someone recognized the number and told Fox about it (it was immediately removed, after running for about two hours).
In addition, they vigorously pursue those who criticize them and have had members totally "disconnect" from family (even immediate family) and friends who disagree.
Purporting to be a "religion," without any deity, love, prayer, soup-kitchens, or worship, they get away with violating minimum-wage laws, unlawful imprisonment, IRS rules, and child-labor laws.
Their private schools are not accredited (except by themselves), and their "NarCONon" drug rehab program does not work, except as recruitment of the vulnerable. ("NarcAnon" is an uncopyrighted "street" name for the legitimate 12-step Narcotics Anonymous program, and is nothing like NarcOnon.)
They recently tried to force Google to shut down an important reference site (Operation Clambake - www.xenu.net), until public protest overcame this gross violation of free speech.
At the present time, there are numerous legal wranglings (wrongful death trial scheduled for January) over the 1995 death of a Scientologist, Lisa McPherson, while in their "care."
Though physically healthy, she suffered a psychotic breakdown after reaching their highly touted state of "clear," which is supposed to be the ultimate in mental health.
She was placed in isolation by the cult for 17 days, where she died of severe dehydration, malnutrition, and eventually a pulmonary embolism.
Autopsy photos showed multiple bruises and cockroach bites. The criminal trial was dismissed, primarily for lack of evidence.
There are dozens of web sites with documentation of their abuses.
For a well-documented perspective about founder L. Ron Hubbard, read: "Bare-Faced Messiah"
For a more intimate description about the Tech and LRH, read: "A Piece of Blue Sky"
For a personal description of "what it feels like" to be part of the cult - "My Nine Lives in Scientology"
"The Road to Xenu"
For a most horrifying tale of a Drug Rehabilitation Program called the Straights Inc.
Canadian Resources for Cult Victim Support
Saskatchewan Citizens Against Mind Control (SCAMC)
1337 College Dr.
Saskatoon, Sask. S7N 0W6
Manitoba Cult Awareness Center
Box 31, Norwood Grove
Winnipeg, Man. R2H 3B8
#305-5655 Park Ave.
Montreal, Que. H2V 4H2
Council on Mind Abuse (COMA)
40 St. Clare Ave., Unit #203
Toronto, ON M4T 1M9