Scientology Served Up Super Bowl Style
For the third year in a row, Scientology has made its way in front of the eyes of hundreds of millions of people around the world. If you were one of the masses who watched the Super Bowl this past Sunday, you might have seen this commercial for Scientology.org. True to the quality expected from a Super Bowl commercial (which is the equivalent of a 30 second or 60 second feature film out of Hollywood) the commercial is crisp, clean, beautifully shot with high quality audio, and ambiguous in its message … until the final few seconds. Here is the copy from the ad:
“We live in an age of searching: to find solutions, to find ourselves, to find the truth. Now imagine an age in which the predictability of science and the wisdom of religion combined. Welcome to the age of answers.”
The first sentence is designed as a catch-all in order to get you to immediately agree with the premise. Solutions. Ourselves. Truth. All viewers can identify with these concepts. Who doesn’t want “solutions”? Who doesn’t want to find the “truth”? The seconds sentence is the “have your cake and eat it too” pitch. If science and religion could be brought in to harmony with one another (even thought they are polar opposite endeavors) then we could all enjoy the best of both worlds. And with the final few words, we are given the “answer”, which turns out to be Scientology.
And there’s the catch. There is nothing scientific about Scientology. It is a set of ideas created by a science-fiction author (L. Ron Hubbard) which is purely religious (at best) but has all of the trappings and techniques implemented by a cult. This commercial was a veiled attempt at equating the merits of science with the practices of Scientology. This is a common technique used by pseudoscientists, paranormalists, and anti-science proponents. Scientology attempts to abscond the legitimacy of science and use it for Scientology’s own illegitimate purposes.