Huxley, Burroughs, and the Church of Scientology

Source: Quillette
by David S Wills

“In the 21st century, Scientology has become a synonym for ‘cult.’ Thanks to an array of investigative exposes and testimony from former members, few people in the Western world are unaware of at least some of the Church’s fantastical beliefs and more alarming behaviours. Sixty years ago, however, it was viewed quite differently. Scientology — or dianetics, as it was originally known — was an appealing idea to many intellectuals and creatives at a time when the world was rapidly changing and notions that had once been taken for granted were suddenly being tossed out of the window. In science, art, and philosophy, accepted norms were being turned on their heads, and in the 1950s and ’60s, L. Ron Hubbard’s ideas — peddled as an alternative to psychiatry — fit quite nicely among the emerging doctrines dreamed up by his contemporary thinkers.” (07/05/21)