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Scientology Religious Beliefs, Rituals, Ethics


Scientology manifests the eight elements of religion in varying degrees. For example, the most conspicuous elements include a belief system, an ethical system, rituals, community, and material expressions of religion. Sacredness, central myths, and emotional experiences are almost non-existent. Their beliefs are based on the ability to use reason to make decisions.

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Belief system

Scientology’s belief system encompasses numerous concepts that include reincarnation, the spirit, salvation, the spiritual nature and immortality of human beings, the intrinsic goodness of people, auditing, God, and science (Reitman, 2011). The belief system is the foundation of all its other aspects. For example, the death ritual of celebrating during funerals is based on the belief of reincarnation. The Church does not have a specific set of teachings on God. It allows its members to understand God through their own means. This freedom creates beliefs that are specific to individuals because their understanding of God is developed in different ways.


Rituals are a core aspect of Scientology and are performed on various occasions and for different reasons. Birth and death rituals are the most common. For example, Scientologists believe in silent birth that involves the observance of silence during the birth of a child in order to avoid outcomes such as psychic scarring (Reitman, 2011). They also believe in reincarnation. Therefore, funerals are celebrations of individuals’ movement from one phase of existence to the next.

Formal services, naming ceremonies, and celebration of specific holidays are common practices observed by Scientologists (Reitman, 2011). Auditing is an example of a core Scientology ritual that involves freeing individuals from the debilitating influences of the imprudent mind. For example, an adherent can be cleared of memories of traumatic past events that stop them from living in accordance with the teachings of Scientology. Their belief that rituals are important promotes their commitment to pursuing righteousness.

Ethical system

Unlike Christianity and other religions, Scientology’s ethics system is primarily founded on reason. According to the founder of Scientology, ethics is founded on reason and the deliberation for survival (Reitman, 2011). Any action or decision that causes destruction in any form is unreasonable. Conditions Formulas is a body of technology that Scientologists use to understand their ethical system (Reitman, 2011). The technology is based on the founder’s realization that different states of existence are connected to different formulas that can be used to attain them. A Confessional is another core element of Scientology’s ethics system.

It involves practices that frees up the spirit of the individual by removing the burden of sin (Reitman, 2011). Scientologists are required to do what is right by using their reason to guide their thoughts and actions.


Chilton, B. (2014). Christianity: the basics. New York, NY: Routledge.

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Reitman, J. (2011). Inside Scientology: the story of America’s most secretive religion. New York, NY: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Woodhead, L. (2004). Christianity: a very short introduction. New York, NY: OUP Oxford.

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