Starting with Dianetics in the 1950s, science fiction author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard developed Scientology, which claims to make enlightenment scientifically achievable
The Indian connectionStrange though it may sound, but the logically and empirically sound philosophy of Scientology does share quite a few things with ancient Indian philosophy. According to Ambala-based DR Subhash Sood, one of the earliest Scientologists in India, one major similarity lies in the concept of liberation.
Says DR Sood: ''The philosophical doctrine of liberation has two major interpretations. One is that God is an external agency and we are at His mercy. And the other, the Buddhist and Vedantic concept is that God or Truth, if you will, is in every human and is eminently attainable. Scientology promotes and follows this doctrine of self-determinism as much as our own ancient Vedic and Buddhist texts.''
Then, Scientology postulates that most ailments are psychosomatic. So does Ayurveda, which clearly states that 90 per cent of human ailments stem from psychosomatic disorders. Ayurveda goes on to treat patients not on the basis of the ailment but on the basis of the patient's own nature.
However, Scientology is yet to make a distinct mark on Indian soil. DR Sood, who has been counseling people on the basis of Dianetics and Scientology at his Ambala center since the 1970s, rues the lack of growing interest in the doctrine. ''It is not that people have not benefited from Scientology in India,'' he says. ''Impending divorces have been averted, parent -child relationships have improved, and patients have been cured of their diseases. But most people do not wish to do anything for themselves. This lack of willingness to solve one's problems on one's own is the greatest hurdle to the popularity of Scientology, which is essentially a self-empowering philosophy.''
Another reason is the lack of sufficient Scientology literature in vernacular languages. This, however, is soon going to be rectified as translations of many of Hubbard's books are in progress. Books in the pipeline are: The Way to Happiness, to be followed by Dianetics: Evolution of a Science and Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, first in English and then in Hindi and other languages. A Bengali edition of Dianetics is already available.
Concludes DR Sood: ''In today's globally competitive environment, it is essential that India learn and practice the process of self-determinism. And what better way to learn it than through the philosophy of Scientology!''
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