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Inside Scientology: The Story of America’s Most Secretive Religion Hardcover – July 5, 2011

4.3 out of 5 stars 344 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1St Edition edition (July 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618883029
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618883028
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (344 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #433,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion is objective, nonbiased and well written. It will raise the blood pressure of the management of Scientology, as well as the hairs on the arms of those unfamiliar with what goes on inside.

I heartedly whipped through this informative book and I highly recommend for general readers,as well as current and former members.

The most important thing I came away with after reading it was that this well researched and written book is an must read for anyone wanting to know why Scientology is so controversial.

The subject and history of Scientology and it's leaders current and past, is such that it would fill volumes. So, I think Janet Reitman accomplished, in good part, what she set out to do with this book:

"It has been my goal to write the first objective modern history of the Church of Scientology," Reitman proclaims in her introduction. "It is the goal of Inside Scientology to translate [L. Ron Hubbard's arcane] language and separate myth from fact."

What to include must have been a real dilemma. As a former member, I just wish there had been more. But for the outsider wanting to know the inside story of the secretive religion called Scientology, they will come away very informed and quite surprised. It does not provide all that there is to know but she provides the essential information and gives the reader enough so that they will have an historical understanding. She compliments earlier works and provides such that one will want to read up on previous works if they have not read them already.

She really did her homework. Hence the large Notes Section and 'Selected Bibliography at the end of the book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The three chapters about Lisa McPherson in this book pretty much sum up what is wrong with scientology.

The story of Lisa will tear your heart out. But it will also show you an example, if an extreme one, of an organization based on lies, taking advantage of others and itself being highly dangerous.

Lisa died receiving what organized scientology called "The Introspection Rundown".

In the book Janet Reitman tells of scientology's founder L Ron Hubbard announcing this rundown as a cure for the last unsolvable mental condition "the psychotic break". As quoted from Hubbard in Janet's book: "'I have made a technical breakthrough which possibly ranks with the major discoveries of the Twentieth Century,' he proclaimed in a bulletin dated November 24, 1973. 'THIS MEANS THE LAST REASON TO HAVE PSYCHIATRY AROUND IS GONE'."

Who is Hubbard to make such a "breakthrough"? The point is not whether the introspection rundown should have been two days or seventeen days as is argued by true believers in Hubbard's "technology". The point is this "tech" was written by a man with zero credentials in the field of mental health, who was an academic fraud, who abused people on a wholesale basis and who ripped off many millions from the proceeds of scientology while countless staff were cash starved and countless public were financially ruined.

In every way organized scientology destroyed a beautiful, young woman and took advantage of her for her money. It was completely incompetent without a technology to truly help others. And then it covers up what in my opinion is serious crime knowingly and willingly so that justice even to this day will never be done.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book despite knowing many details over the span of Scientology history and because of it. Here was an author who reportedly had done intense research, but noone has been able to capture with any depth the full panomara in one full swoop. How could anyone?

Janet Reitman has accomplished this exhausting and trying feat not reading like a dry history book, but a drama/scifi/mystery. I could not put it down until finished. There were many details I didn't know. More important to me personally was even after all this time I was able to piece together various plans and schemes that never made sense until Janet laid it all out.

I hope your steadfast labor, Ms Reitman, finds the tremendous success and widespread distribution it deserves. I firmly believe this will be The Book on the Real Scientology that will be referenced more than any other. I just finished it and am a bit awestruck. I certainly hope politicians, lobbyists, social groups, humanitarian groups and others will read this book and educate themselves fully, as well as parents, and teens, young adults.

The one group that needs to read it the most are Scientologists. In reality, they will be the last. Sincere thanks. Oh, there are juicy details in each chapter that make it a Must Read for almost anyone. When it comes to Scientology bizarre elements, you just can't make this stuff up. Hope to see you interviwed by Steven Colbert in the very near future!
More thoughts after a second read:

It is impossible for any one book to cover All of sci history from All angles. It would take a series, a long one.

There's a very important factor that sometimes gets missed so I'll repeat it. Janet Reitman discusses her sources and research in great depth.
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