Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Re-spiritualizing India

If you've ever paid attention to anything written about Tom Cruise other than movie reviews/angel Suri's designer dresses/shopaholic wifey dropping thousands at barneys/comparisons with a midget/rendezvous with bestie Beckham/speculations of him being gay (don't tell me you haven't heard this one... i have insider info on it :P), you are probably familiar with the term 'Scientology'.

Tom Cruise, amongst other celebrities, has given immense popularity to this concept or rather the ideology of Scientology. I've read a little here and there about it and I still have no clue what on earth it is. Sure I've found vague descriptions like "A system of understanding how the brain is wired and then using that knowledge to produce better results in life -- whether it's in the field of academics, relationships or professionally. It's not psychological babble in the least." but that usually leaves me with a 'whaaa???'. It's hard to decipher even when I have my non-effective thinking hat on which is rare.

I came across a news story this morning about how the Director of the Scientology tour in India has been promoting it since the past four years. Reports say they have trained thousands of civil defense personnel in Maharashtra, among the police in Bangalore, Delhi and Mysore as well as in the Border Security Force in Kolkata.

I was beyond baffled. Training defense personnel, police and BSF in Scientology to do their job better? Really? How about equipping them with ammunition that isn't 100 years old, basics like night vision glasses so they literally don't just shoot in the dark, uniforms that protect from severe weather and slightly believable salaries so they don't have to resort to corruption, for starters?

Or maybe it is effective and I'm just ignorant on the subject. The challenge is to figure out what it is without "submitting yourself to the scientology principles" which is something I would never be tempted to do, sober or drunk. Why do I recall 'electrifying a tomato and listening to and giving a response to it' or 'return of the space gods aka aliens' or 'delivering a child in utter silence' in context of this subject? Isn't it just pseudo-religion based on science fiction?

The Indian Scientology tour director concluded with "India is so huge, that we're going to have to train a lot of people to reach out to the masses."

Beware India... or someone please enlighten me.

Photo Credit: http://www.artpolitic.org/

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