Unaddressed letter from Gerard Renna, Church of Scientology of Boston1
L. Ron Hubbard is well-known for his work as an author and as the founder of the Scientology religion, but less so for his adventures, including one mentioned by Camille Paglia2 in her recent article.
Mr. Hubbard believed in living life to its fullest which is why he was a barnstorming pilot, a member of the elite Explorer’s Club and a sailor. The latter led him to a distinguished career in the US Naval intelligence.
While in the US Navy, Hubbard was assigned a mission in 1945 to break up the US branch of Aleister Crowley’s black magic group of the Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) in Pasadena, CA, as many physicists were getting involved and this was creating a national security situation. As published in the Sunday Times of London on October 5,1969, Hubbard successfully infiltrated and broke up this group that was run by Dr. Jack Parsons. This led to many of the top sixty-four US scientists being declared security risks and dismissed from government service.
According to religious scholar J. Gordon Melton’s paper presented at “The Conference on Alternative Religions” at Loyola University in May 1981 about Crowley’s US leader Jack Parsons, there has been confusion regarding a connection between Mr, Hubbard and O.T.O. leaders. Per Melton, “since Hubbard’s involvement with this incident [covered in the previous paragraph] has also been used to discredit the Church of Scientology that he founded, we should also note that the Church’s teachings are not magical and show no connection with the O.T.O. or its beliefs and practices.”
Mr. Hubbard’s works also include a non-religious morals booklet called, “The Way to Happiness,” that is used in schools throughout the world as well as proven methods to get people off drugs-—a far cry from what Crowley had practiced. For more information on the works and life of Mr. Hubbard, click onto http://www.lronhubbard.org.
Sincerely, Rev. Gerard Renna
Church of Scientology of Boston
From Camille Paglia’s Cults and Cosmic Consciousness: Religious Vision in the American 1960s:
A startling and little-known example of Crowley’s enduring influence is the Church of Scientology, founded in 1954 by science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, one of the main shapers of New Age thought. Hubbard had met Crowley at the latter’s Los Angeles temple in 1945. 3 Hubbard’s son has revealed that his father claimed to be Crowley’s successor: Hubbard told him that Scientology was born on the day that Crowley died. The drills used by Scientologists to cleanse and clarify the mind are evidently a reinterpretation of Crowley’s singular fusion of Asian meditation with Satanic ritualism, which sharpens the all-conquering will. The guiding premise of Hubbard’s mega-bestseller, Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health (1950), is that morality and spirituality can be scientifically analyzed and managed—as if guilt and remorse, in the Crowley way, are mere baggage to be jettisoned. Scientology, which attracts celebrities like John Travolta and Tom Cruise, has been pursued by the irs for its tax-exempt status as a religion. Scientology’s religiosity can be detected in its theory of reincarnation: the “process” allegedly eradicates negative thoughts and experiences predating our life in the womb.
- Retrieved from http://www.bu.edu/arion/Volume10/10.3/Scientology.pdf ↩
- Wikipedia: Camille Paglia ↩
- I have not seen other references to an in-person meeting between Hubbard and Crowley. ↩