elcome to the first issue of the Special Los Angeles edition of Freedom. With a greater concentration of Scientologists living in Los Angeles and surrounding Southern California communities than anywhere else in the world, and with Church buildings everywhere, the Church of Scientology is a familiar presence throughout the Southland. Our buildings, our people and our works are all prominent fixtures in this part of the world – in TV and radio public service messages and in Church-assisted programs to combat the problems of drugs, crime and illiteracy, such as Narconon, Criminon and the World Literacy Crusade.
Because of this presence, many ask – what is Scientology?
Scientology is an applied religious philosophy which recognizes that man is basically good and offers tools anyone can use to become happier and more able as a person and to improve conditions in life for himself and others. The word itself comes from the Latin scio, which means “know” and the Greek word logos, meaning “study of.” Scientology literally means “knowing how to know.”
The world’s first Church of Scientology was founded in Los Angeles by a handful of people in 1954. Today, more than 20 Churches and Missions and hundreds of full-time staff serve parishioners in Southern California. Worldwide, 43 years after the first Church was established, Scientology is improving life in every corner of the globe – as is its mission – with more than 8 million members in over 100 countries.
We thought it was time you heard about Scientology in Los Angeles today and decided we should publish a special edition of Freedom for the Southland.
The Church’s flagship publication, the investigative news journal Freedom, was first published in 1968. Today, editions are produced in eight languages in more than a dozen countries.
This inaugural Los Angeles issue covers a range of Church-sponsored community activities, including those which have benefited underprivileged children and others which have been enjoyed by the community at large.
You will also get a report from the gala grand opening of Los Angeles’ newest street, L. Ron Hubbard Way, in Hollywood – the new address of the Church’s major facilities in L.A. Thousands came from around the world for the occasion, as well as City Council President John Ferraro and a host of other officials and celebrities. The street is now open and you are welcome to visit any time.
We will also tell you about local judges who are making commendable efforts to curb society’s most pressing problems – drugs and crime – through innovative courts which hear only drug-related offenses.
And we bring you news of effective solutions to those social ills. Dedicated individuals are working to resolve these blights in our communities and are making them safer and better places for everyone.
Scientologists consider injustice and the abuse or infringement of human rights and freedoms intolerable. Freedom investigates these abuses and exposes the people who victimize others and tread on their rights. In this issue, we show how mental “diseases” and “disorders” are created for the private financial benefit of dishonest psychiatric practitioners in Los Angeles and nationwide, and what should be done about this.
We publish this information here because Scientologists are not merely “philosophically” opposed to those people and practices which oppress man. Scientology is utterly opposed to all things which make man less free in any respect – physically or spiritually.
Scientologists are likewise dedicated to improving conditions in society for everyone. Their care for their fellow man is expressed in the Aims of Scientology, which call for “A civilization without insanity, without criminals and without war, where the able can prosper and honest beings can have rights, and where man is free to rise to greater heights.”
It is thus common to find Scientologists with their sleeves rolled up, out in their neighborhoods, striving in many different ways to aid their fellows and create a better community for all, as you will see in this issue.
Because this Freedom edition has been launched as a service to the people of Los Angeles, you will find it contains information published nowhere else – important news for and about the city that is both the capital of the world’s entertainment industry and home to millions.
I invite your comments and look forward to hearing from you.