What is Scientology?

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On February 27, 1984, the United States District Court, Central District of California in Peterson v. Church of Scientology of California, ruled:

“This court finds that the Church of Scientology is a religion within the meaning of the First Amendment. The beliefs and ideas of Scientology address ultimate concerns – the nature of the person and the individual’s relationship to the universe. The theories of Scientology involve a comprehensive belief system. Additional indicia of the religious status of Scientology include the following: (a) Scientology has ordained ministers and ceremonial functions; (b) it is incorporated as a tax-exempt religious organization; and (c) it characterizes itself as a church.”

After reviewing the judicial precedents concerning the religious nature of Scientology, the United States 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization v. City of Clearwater, succinctly summed up US legal history on September 30, 1993:

“The history, organization, doctrine and practice of Scientology has been thoroughly recounted in numerous judicial decisions. We need not reiterate this background because the district court found that no genuine factual issues existed to dispute Scientology’s claim of being a bona fide religion.”


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