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The religion of Scientology is extremely controversial. Some consider it a cult while others consider it a business venture. Either way, scientology has a lot of elements of social psychology that are worth mentioning. Scientologists attempt to revert themselves back to their most basic, “primordial spirits”. They attempt to achieve this through a very strict lifestyle, as well as deep (and expensive) soul searching. Through a series of auditing (the soul searching) sessions, a person can move up stages along the Bridge to Total Freedom. As they go along this “bridge” they begin to learn more about themselves and when they get to a certain point, more important and worldly information is disclosed to them. When they get to that point, scientologists are told that 75 million years ago, a warlord named Xenu destroyed seventy six planets and their beings whose souls were caught, implanted with false concepts of organized religion and then attached to humans.

Some important things that are part of why Scientology has remained so successful are the concepts of deindividuation, compliance, and conformity. According to this article, there are scientologists who truly believe in the religion and then there are those who are born into it or just want to leave. Those who want to leave the religion often go through deindividuation and act like religious people around other scientologists but don’t follow everything about the religion when no one is around. They are also forced to conform to what this society perceives to be proper, no matter how strange they find it. They end up with two conflicting thoughts in their mind, or cognitive dissonance, and have issues trying to figure out what’s right for them. There’s also a big issue with compliance. When someone feels like they want to leave the church, they are first asked to stay by other members. If they don’t change their mind, they get their loved ones to make the request and usually they stay. This system is...
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