Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Working for World Peace

Well, I had to look hard for any good news today, but I finally found one - Olympic Flame Arrives in Athens .

The olympics is one event that unites the whole world in a spirit of mutual cooperation and participation.

If we really want Peace, and I believe the vast majority of people on earth do, we should create more opportunities for people to share in common experiences.

Here's another example of such an activity: Seeds of Peace. In their own words, here's the purpose of this program:

"Seeds of Peace is a non-profit, non-political organization dedicated to to preparing teenagers from areas of conflict with the leadership skills required to promote coexistence and peace.

"While the organization focuses primarily on the Middle East, its programs have expanded to include other regions of conflict. As of 2003, participants come from the Middle East, the Balkans, South Asia, and Cyprus."

More Information about Scientology

(my favorite subject)

Here's a site I just found. It gives a very good description of Scientology:

Church of Scientology - The Foundation for Religious Freedom

Monday, March 22, 2004

More controversy over Iraq reared its head today:

The White House blasted former top terrorism adviser Richard Clarke on Monday in a coordinated effort to dismantle his allegations that President Bush had botched the U.S. approach to terrorism before and after the attacks of Sept. 11....

The former national security aide, who left his post more than a year ago, alleges that Bush has made the war against terrorism harder by diverting resources and troops for the Iraqi invasion. (full article here)

As L. Ron Hubbard put it: "Ideas and not battles mark the forward progress of mankind. Individuals, and not masses, form the culture of the race."

We are reaping the violence we sowed.

Religious Intolerance in Europe

I first came across religious intolerance in Europe in the late 60's in, of all places, France. I lived there for a summer and right into the French prejudice against Muslims. But 40 years later I had hoped they would have matured in their attitudes. Then just a few weeks ago they passed legislation prohibiting Muslim girls and women from wearing head scarves in school. While we are fighting to get Muslim women in 3rd world countries a decent education, one of our Western allies closes the door on their education unless they are willing to comprimise with principles of their faith.

Scientology in Europe

Scientologists in Europe are confronted on a daily basis with religious intolerance, especially in France, Belgium, Germany and Greece. Intolerance usually comes from a lack of information, resulting in the acceptance of odd false ideas that substitute for facts. That's why I was so happy to find out about the information campaign in Europe, sponsored by theChurch of Scientology International

Here are some of the web sites that launched this campaign:

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Love this article about Tom Cruise. I really agree with his views on the relationship between Scientology and Buddhism:

"Buddhism is Grandfather of Scientology": Tom Cruise

Saturday January 10, 05:53 AM

PARIS (AFP) - Tom Cruise, who stars in Edward Zwick's "The Last Samurai", praised eastern religion saying "Buddhism is the grandfather of scientology" and climbed up on a chair to show off his new-found strength and flexibility in the making of the film.

The 41-year-old star, sporting short hair and a grey suit, waxed lyrical on Buddhism during a Paris news conference at the Ritz hotel held to promote the release in France of the movie next week.

"I was struck by the code of Bushido (the way of the Samurai). It's powerful, it talks about compassion, helping others, responsibility, integrity ... timeless values, ways I identify with," said Cruise, who has practised scientology for 20 years.

"Buddhism is the grandfather of Scientology" added the actor, flanked by Zwick and his Japanese partner Hiroyuki Sanada....

In the two-and-a-half hour movie, Algren is hired by the Emperor Meiji to train an army which would be able to eliminate the samurai, who for centuries were the primary defense force for the Japanese empire. When he is captured by the samurai in a battle, his loyalties are seriously called into question.

The movie, filmed in Japan, New Zealand and Hollywood, premiered in early December in Japan and the United States simultaneously.

"I learned a lot about my own history and the Indian Americans," Cruise said.

"The beauty of cinema is to melt barriers and see how other people live and celebrate different cultures, instead of being afraid."

Related Sites about Scientology, Dianetics and L. Ron Hubbard

Dianetics: Understanding the Mind
L. Ron Hubbard, A Profile
L. Ron Hubbard: Study Technology

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

There's been a lot of talk lately about Kirstey Alley helping to her friend Courtney Love overcome her drug problem.

The real news is that Narconon WORKS and does get people off drugs - thousands of them - on a routine basis. Over 70% of the people who participate in the program come out drug free and stay off drugs. Now THAT is news.
Narconon works because it uses the technology L. Ron Hubbard discovered and formulated that gets down to the real problem with drugs and handles the underlying reasons a person who get into them in the first place.

I had a real drug problem in the 70's - everyone I knew did, but hardly any of us thought so. When drugs started destroying my peace of mind I remembered a friend told me about Scientology, and that I could get help there. I did, and I've never taken drugs since.

More sites about Scientology

Church of Scientology Advanced Organization & Saint Hill in Copenhagen, Denmark AOSH EU (AOSHEU)
Dianetics and Scientology Stories From Founding Scientologists
Erika Christensen is an up-and-coming artist who is also a Scientologist. She credits Scientology with helping her keep sane in the crazy world of Hollywood in this article:

Actress Erika Christensen counts Tom Cruise among her mentors. But superstar Cruise doesn't give the 22-year-old career advice or tips about technique.

They discuss Scientology.

Christensen, now in "The Perfect Score," says she has been a Scientologist since she was 8 years old.

"Perfect Score" is a caper comedy about six high school seniors out to steal the answers to the SAT. It co-stars Scarlett Johansson ("Lost in Translation") as the funky chick, and Christensen as a good girl who learns to act bad.

Like Cruise and equally famous Scientology disciple John Travolta, Christensen considers the faith one of her secret weapons.

She says she has spoken to Cruise about their shared beliefs, and has bumped into Travolta the Scientology center in Los Angeles.
"I've talked to Tom less about acting than I have about the church," she says, "because he's been studying for a long time, and he's studied a lot that I'm looking forward to.

"So I'll say to him about studies, 'How is it?' And he says, 'Oh, it's incredible!' And I go, 'I'm so excited!'"

And she is quick to credit her study of Scientology for her success.

Christensen shrugs off Scientology's's reputation as a cult, preferring instead to focus on what she says she's learned from prolific science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard'sspiritual books, which her parents have studied since before she was born.

"Scientology helps me in acting to focus on communication," she says. "You can also develop and awareness of yourself.

"It's almost a safety precaution when you're an actor, because some people can be traumatized by characters, and I don't have to worry about that.

"It's a study (that helps) see people as spiritual beings. And in Hollywood, that's more stable than being a hunk of meat."

Christensen has other assets, of course.

One is her toughness. She played Michael Douglas's drugged-out daughter in 2000's Oscar-winner "Traffic."

"I look like a sweet, corn-fed kid," she says. "My roles are my rebellion."

Another is her figure.

Christensen is the first to admit she's not exactly waifish.

"I love my body," she says, slapping one of her thighs heartily. "Got me some meat on my bones!"

She played a psycho-stalker high schooler in the 2002 thriller "Swimfan," which required Christensen to get hot-and-heavy in a pool with hunky co-star Jesse Bradford.

"Love scenes feel very mechanical," she says. "But our whole job is to make it look real."

So how real is she willing to go, since she's comfortable with her appearance?

"If it's appropriate and necessary to the story, I'd do nudity," she says. "The movie that I think of in that case is 'Shakespeare in Love' _ there, it's so appropriate.

"But there are plenty of nude scenes that are distracting."

Christensen grew up outside Los Angeles, and says that when she was 8, she asked to study Scientology.

At 12, her interest in dance led to acting, and soon after, her parents _ an insurance agent and an office manager _ began home-schooling her.

She has already made another movie, "The Upside of Anger," with Joan Allen and Kevin Costner. She's one of Allen's daughters, along with Evan Rachel Wood and Keri Russell.

As she throws her red scarf around her neck, Christensen offers up another lesson Scientology has taught her.

"I don't have a 'Life's short, play hard' type of philosophy," she says. "That's about fear. I tend to think that life is very long _ but you should still play hard."

Related Links about Scientology

Scientology: Religious Tolerance
Church of Scientology Advanced Organization & Saint Hill in Copenhagen, Denmark -- AOSH EU
Allexperts Scientology Q&A

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

Scientology Effective Solutions

Scientology Effective Solutions is a new site that launches an information campaign about the Scientology religion. Here's the state purpose:

"The Church of Scientology International European Office for Public Affairs and Human Rights in Brussels, Belgium is publishing a series of brochures and web sites on the Scientology religion and its activities. Twelve in all, these brochures will be widely distributed in 8 European languages and put online — one each month — throughout the year.
These brochures are intended to fulfill the growing public demand for more information about the Scientology religion, its beliefs and practices.

In particular, facts and figures about Scientology’s wide-reaching social betterment and reform activities will be presented; these are the effective solutions, based on the helping technologies developed by L. Ron Hubbard, that in the hands of Scientologists everywhere are bettering conditions across the continent.

It is these solutions and the lasting positive results they bring that has become the hallmark of this, the fastest growing religious movement on earth."

People can certainly use more effective solutions in this day and age.

An interesting article today in the Lafayette Louisianna Advertiser. I don't know how long it will stay online, so here's the article in full.

It describes how use of administrative technology developed by L. Ron Hubbard helped a man turn his company around.

Executives learn to lead
Small firms join the rush to study management
John Sullivan

March 9, 2004

Claudia B. Laws/The Lafayette Daily Advertiser
Mike Carson, president of Carson Construction Inc. and Carson Homes Inc., stands Monday in the St. Jude home that his company is building in River Ranch in Lafayette. Two of his employees, Noel Otero, left, and Rodrigo Rodriguez, work on the home in the background.LAFAYETTE — About a year ago, Mike Carson’s construction company was ready to fold. Today, it has a project backlog that stretches forward almost a year. He estimates that before 2004 ends, he will double his work force to 200.

Carson, president of Carson Construction Inc. and Carson Homes Inc., said he owes this turnaround to a chance meeting with a management program created by L. Ron Hubbard, the science fiction writer and creator of the Church of Scientology .

Carson was one of thousands of U.S. businesses that spent more than $51.3 billion on employee and management training in 2003, according to the U.S. Training Institute. A study by the institute found that the following items were the most common topics for management training: ethics, leadership, customer service and sales.

“We’re seeing more and more companies request business management programs,” said Roy C. Holleman, executive director of the Enterprise Center of Louisiana in Carencro.

“They are asking for everything from video conferences for managers to management training that can be done here,” Holleman said. “I think it is a trend that is here to stay — companies getting more training for managers to help them become more efficient and better producers.”

Carson said some people might be thrown off by the idea of going to a program founded by the creator of the Church of Scientology.

It’s called the WISE Management Program. WISE stands for World Institute of Scientology Enterprises.

“This program is for everyone, not just for members of the Church of Scientology mission here in Lafayette,” said WISE member Marie Pace. Pace is a member of the Church of Scientology and owner of Optimum Solutions Holistic Health.

“It saved me and my business,” Carson said. “I’m not sure how else to put it.”

The WISE program, Carson said, shows a business owner how to delegate responsibility; how to get rid of inefficiency and waste through a streamlined management process; and how to track each day with charts that show where each division is and how it is doing.

“That’s the key,” Carson said. “You learn to divide you business into seven categories, and you make sure that the work in each category stays there and it doesn’t start overlapping.”

Other management training programs run the spectrum from books and computer courses that can be bought at bookstores to high-level programs like the Owner/President Management Program, a three-week a year course that lasts three years at the Harvard School of Business.

The Enterprise Center of Louisiana is asked to helped arrange video conferences and for advice on Internet programs.

“The requests we are getting are from both small and large businesses,” Holleman said. “They represent a wide variety of our area businesses.”

Nathan J. Thornton Jr., director of the Micro Business Development Center at UL Lafayette’s College of Business Administration, agreed.

“What we are seeing now is something that I felt all along,” Thornton said. “Small businesses have one major thing in common — a particular skill or knowledge and turn that into a business.

“What we are seeing are more of these companies getting training for management skills. They have the skills and talents to open their businesses, but they need the management tools as well,” he said.

A lack of business plans or a sound operating program is the No. 1 reason why most small businesses fail, he said. The training programs, whether from the Center of the Carencro facility or private, all help give the business owners those tools.

“Training for management and business owners has pretty much caught on across the board,” Thornton said. “I don’t see it reversing itself any time soon.”