Scientology refers to a religion or body of beliefs that was founded by L. Ron Hubbard back in 1952. Hubbard started off as a writer of various science fiction articles and self-help books. His ideas eventually evolved into the practice of Scientology which he founded and made a church called the Church of Scientology based in New Jersey, USA. The basic beliefs and teachings of Scientology revolve around the idea that people are spiritual and immortal beings with greater potential than what is already visible or present. Through various teachings and spiritual rehabilitation, followers of Scientology will be able to block barriers to their supposed greater potential. These barriers are referred to as Engrams which relate to people’s memories of bad experiences in life. These unwanted experiences or traumatic incidents are said to be retained for life and have the power to corrupt the mind and therefore hinder people from achieving their true spiritual potential.
Human beings are also considered to have an immortal spirit with limitless capabilities and potential. This idea is called the Thetan and it is considered inherently good. Followers of scientology undergo spiritual rehabilitation to get rid of bad influences at the spiritual level and achieve the so-called Clear status. Being â€œClearâ€ in Scientology means that a person is able to reach his/her true potential through better handling of bad thoughts and experiences or engrams.
Many Scientology followers are advised to practice auditing, which is a type of rehabilitation for the immortal or spiritual soul. In this practice, followers of this religion consciously make the effort to re-live painful experiences in their past in order to gain better understanding and to learn how to effectively deal with them. Despite various criticisms to Scientology in terms of their beliefs and practices, many people still join this religious group. Its popularity has also grown because of many high-profile people and celebrities that are members of their church.