Our second half of our one-on-one interview with one of Scientology’s leaders continues in Hollywood.
We confront spokesman Tommy Davis with the confidential works of L. Ron Hubbard and ask why there are threats of death by pneumonia for those who read it.
Nathan Baca: Somebody from the Village Voice apparently said the Church of Scientology is about “ridding the body of space alien parasites.” And your reaction then and now is what exactly to that claim?
Tommy Davis: You know, here’s the thing. There are outrageous claims out there on the internet about what Scientologists believe. These are claims that are forwarded by anti-Scientologists. The best and easiest and most transparent way in which people learn about it is through L. Ron Hubbard’s books and lectures.
NB (pulling out 650 page book of “Technical Notes of Operating Thetans”): Looking at Mr. Hubbard’s own works, what seems to be in a sense curious is at least, according to L. Ron Hubbard’s own words, and I quote, “the head of the galactic confederation.Seventy-six planets around larger stars visible from here…”
TD: I can stop you. I know what you’re talking about. I’m familiar with the material. I think what you’re getting at is the confidential scriptures of the Church.
NB: But this is about the fundamentals of– is this not about the fundamentals of your belief, though? This goes into the sense of the soul.
TD: Right. For you to talk to me, you as somebody who is not a Scientologist to talk to me about what my beliefs are or to ask me to explain any core religious belief, that’s an offensive concept. Nobody should ever be asked to do that.
NB: And is that the reasoning for the cease and desist letter for just about everybody who has published these works, the esoteric works. From Sunshine Press to Google, I believe, has also been given a cease and desist letter from Moxon & Kobrin (law firm). That’s the reasoning behind it, correct?
TD: Absolutely, I’m not interested in somebody else’s version of my religion or somebody else’s idea of what my religion is, or something that somebody stole from the Church that is legitimately Church materials and is trying to show it to me for the only intent of knowingly violating my religious beliefs and knowingly violating how it is I see fit to practice my religion.
NB: But arguably isn’t the reason why they are potentially– wouldn’t want to read it is because the book itself says that if you read it out of order, in effect “free wheeling,” according to one of the pages, physical harm will come of you. I believe it mentions pnuemonia. There is an actual fear, a physical fear, arguably. There is a physical cause and effect, saying that if you read this, before you’re ready for it, physical harm will come of you. I’ve read, though, arguably not understood much of OT’s 3 through 6. According to this, as I read it, I should have had some kill switch and I should have died of pnuemonia. Why am I not dead yet?
TD: I…I… (laughs then pauses) Here we’re going to the basic fundamental point that I’m trying to make. OK. What you’re doing right now and what it is you’re saying to me is an intent to ridicule religious beliefs. That’s really what we’re talking about. And you’re just forwarding an agenda of hate.