When I first heard that Leah Remini planned to make a show about Scientology, I was cautiously optimistic. Not that many celebrities have been brave enough to share their stories, much less want to really go further than the HBO Going Clear documentary. After watching the first episode, I am happy to say that Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath is professionally done and extremely thoughtful. It presents a lot of useful information in a short time. Please watch it and tell everyone on your social network to watch it too.
I highly recommend it not just for those interested in learning more about Scientology, but also for those who are curious about any high demand group. It will resonate with those who have experienced alienation, disconnection, excommunication, disfellowshipping, and shunning. I especially loved seeing the contrast between old footage of Leah as a Scientologist, and footage of her as an emotionally available, thoughtful, authentic person as an ex-member. Same goes for Mike Rinder, former number three man of Scientology who is also featured.
There are just two comments I wish to make, but I imagine the entire series is already complete. First, there’s a huge opportunity to draw in a wider audience by connecting the dots between Scientology and other destructive cult groups. Isolating members from their family, forbidding people from listening to ex-members and critics, love-bombing, and unethical use of confession are all common cult mind control tactics. Second, the show seems to be made for those who are already knowledgeable to the group. I suggest explaining the loaded language it uses such as “body routing” and “originating a thought.”
The first episode, “Disconnection,” focused on the stories of Amy Scobee and Mike Rinder, two former Scientology higher-ups. Amy’s story was particularly poignant. Signing a billion year commitment to the Sea Org, lying to her dad, and getting blamed for being raped by a Scientology executive was just the start. When she finally woke up to the abuse, insanity, and immorality of Miscaviage and Scientology, she was demonized and labeled a “Suppressive Person” or SP by the organization. (I was labeled an SP back in 1976 when I went on TV criticizing cults, and of course was friends with Paulette Cooper). Amy’s mother who had brought her into the cult was heavily pressured to disconnect from her. Amy never gave up on her mother, and they were eventually reunited after her mother left Scientology. It was so special to see her mom who was dying from stage 4 cancer, speaking out so forcefully against the cult and how her love for her daughter won out. Love is truly stronger than mind control!
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About the Author:
Steven Hassan M.Ed. LMHC, NCC has helped thousands of individuals and families recover from undue influence (mind control). With over 40 years of experience, he is sought after as one of the foremost authorities on undue influence and controlling groups and individuals. Steve understands the subject from a unique perspective as both a former cult member and as a clinical professional. Steven Hassan has published 4 books about cults. His first book, which came out in 1988 under the title Combatting Cult Mind Control, was updated and re-released in 2015 as Combating Cult Mind Control. Chapter 2, My life in the Unification Church has been placed for free on this web site. This book is available as an audiobook as well as on kindle.
Steven is the Founding Director of the Freedom of Mind Resource Center, a coaching, consulting, and training organization dedicated to supporting individuals to have the freedom to think clearly and to freely consider how they want to live their lives. Steven pioneered a breakthrough method called the Strategic Interactive Approach (SIA), an effective and legal alternative for families to help cult members. The SIA teaches family and friends how to strategically influence the individual involved in the cult.
Learn about how the Strategic Interactive Approach can help rescue your friend or loved one out from under predatory influence.
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