The next challenge: Tolerance
The Church of Scientology commands allegiance through enforced agreement. It is often quite subtle with implied hardship to those contemplating stepping out of line. The church does not foster tolerance. In many ways, it fosters intolerance – like the many us/them concepts: Staff/Public, Higher Sea Org Staff/Lower Sea Org Staff, Scientology/The media, Scientologists/Wogs etc. All to many Scientologists I have met are less tolerant than the average person.
Many have left the church due to its counter-intention to free will. In leaving the church they may find a resurgence in free will and in personal integrity. They can finally disagree without the implied or openly enforced consequences. They can object, care less or care more for what they hold close to their heart.
Then they meet others who have left. An idea may form to do something about the current scene with the Church wielding monopolistic power over the freedom to practice one’s religion and hence perhaps a monopoly on freedom itself. With newfound integrity, they dare to voice their opinions, they dare to challenge. But without a resurgence of tolerance, trouble ensues. With the attitude of “It’s my way or the highway” so prevalent in the Church, there is little hope for a combined effort to handle much of anything.
I see this as the next big challenge: To help create a resurgence of tolerance in the independent field so as to make it possible to form real communities that can help others by delivering Scientology.
There is bickering and nagging out here. There is name calling and infights. There is all kinds wasted energy in endless needs to “be right”.
I am not advocating that we all pull together by agreeing to some leader or group. I am advocating a resurgence in tolerance. Large and successful communities like Wikipedia or the Linux communities have peoples of all colors and creeds. They still manage to get some really good products out the door. Not because they agree on everything, but because they have learned to deal with differences in productive ways.