Blog: Let's Talk Xenu (Deconstructing Scientology: Chapter 19) - 2017-01-26

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F0.png Let's Talk Xenu (Deconstructing Scientology: Chapter 19) January 26, 2017, Chris Shelton, Critical Thinker at Large

Hey everyone. I'm back and this week, I really mean this when I say we have a fascinating chapter for you. In fact, never have I been so appropriately dressed for the occasion. As with every video in this series, we are taking on a new chapter of this book, Scientology, edited by James R. Lewis and featuring academics writing about Scientology. So far, whether they have been sociologists, psychologists or religious studies professors, Lewis managed to gather together a group of people who have favorable ideas about destructive cults like Scientology and whether he meant to or not, he put together a book of apologetics about it. However, this week we truly do have something so different and unique from what has come earlier, I honestly wonder if it somehow slipped into this book by accident.

Chapter 19 is called "'His name was Xenu. He used renegades...': Aspects of Scientology's Founding Myth" and it is beefy. I'd actually been looking forward to reading this academic analysis of the famed OT III Xenu story since I started this book. I am very happy to report that of everything I've read here so far, this is the first chapter where no bias comes into play. This is not apologetics nor is it anti-cult preaching. In other words, somehow a real academic paper made it in here.

For anyone who has watched South Park or read even casually about Scientology, you know that there is this famous mythology created by L. Ron Hubbard about a galactic overlord named Xenu and there are spaceships and volcanos and dead spirits and all sorts of fun things and that Scientologists are crazy for believing any of it. Well, if you want a more nuanced and detailed account of what this whole thing is really all about, keep watching. There's a lot to cover, so we're gonna just dive right in.