Sunday, April 14, 2024

The Road to Total Freedom by Roy Wallis

December 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Evidence

It has also been suggested that Hubbard secured some of the material incorporated into Scientology from Jack Parsons, a follower of Aleister Crowley and briefly the head of a Lodge of Crowley’s Ordo Templi Orientis in Pasadena.[1]

That Hubbard was associated with Parsons early in 1946 is not in doubt, although a press release issued by the Church of Scientology after the appearance of Alexander Mitchell’s article offers a different interpretation of the facts,[2] claiming that he was sent to live with Parsons by ‘certain agencies [which] objected to nuclear physicists being housed under the same roof’.[3] There is no evidence that Hubbard’s system of Scientology owes any great debt to that of Crowley, Parsons or the O.T.O. Indeed none of the four members of Crowley’s order whom I have contacted in England and America has been able to confirm any significant points of similarity.[4] The only apparent similarities are those which are common to a number of systems of magical and occult practice – for example, the belief that the individual has supernatural abilities such as telepathy, teleportation, and telekinesis, which can be achieved or regained through mental and spiritual exercises. In the case of many magical and occult systems these practices and their goals have been absorbed from Yoga.

  1. Although he does not refer to Hubbard by name, I think there can be no doubt that this is the implication to be drawn from Kenneth Grant’s remark that an unnamed associate of Parsons after the death of the latter ‘is still at large, having grown wealthy and famous by a misuse of the secret knowledge which he had wormed out of Parsons’. Kenneth Grant, The Magical Revival (Muller, London, 1972), p. 107. The context makes it quite clear that Hubbard is the man referred to. The same implication is to be found in a newspaper feature by Alexander Mitchell, ‘The odd beginning of Ron Hubbard’s career’, Sunday Times, 5 October 1969, p. 11.
  2. Which are misreported or misunderstood in some particulars by Mitchell.
  3. This press statement was for the most part reproduced in the Sunday Times, 28 December 1969. The newspaper also paid the Church of Scientology a small sum in settlement of an action initiated by the Church in respect of Mitchell’s article. (Parsons was a research chemist working at the California Institute of Technology.)
  4. The author, John Symonds, also paid a sum in settlement after his book on Crowley, The Great Beast, suggested a connexion between Crowley’s ‘tenet’s of black magic’ and ‘the principles of Scientology’ (The Guardian, 22 November 1974).

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