Life Magazine published an article on Scientology “A True Life Nightmare” in the November 15, 1968 issue. A copy of that magazine is up for auction on Ebay. The entire article is available on Lermanet.
Recruits to Scientology are most often young, intelligent and idealistic. They become fanatics on the subject, impervious to argument, quick to cut themselves off from doubters. Many young people have been instructed by their Scientology organizations “orgs,” they are called to “disconnect” from their families. “Disconnect” means exactly that: sever all relations. Such estrangements can be deep and lasting, leaving heartsick parents no longer able to speak rationally with their children.
Scientology is expensive. To reach the first meaningful stage costs the beginner $650 in tuition. To become an Operating Thetan, Class VIII — the highest present classification — can raise the all-in cost (books, tuition, equipment, board and lodging at Scientology centers during advanced training) to as much as $15,000. The high costs have the effect of turning many young Scientologists into permanent parts of the apparatus. To finance their own advanced studies they take low paying jobs within the org — and in the end find themselves alienated from life outside of Scientology.