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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You've got to laugh...
I am SO impressed by this account Marc Headley's experience of Scientology and of his eventual escape. Why? Because Scientology is G R I M, controlling, arbitrary and often downright cruel in its dealings with members, whom it keeps in a state of perpetual tension and anxiety lest they unwittingly fall foul of a more senior official or transgress some boundary of which...
Published on 10 Aug 2012 by Cassandra

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1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I am fascinated by books from Scientologists who can shed some light on the religion. Beyond Belief. However this book is very poorly written. The spelling and the grammatical errors were were distracting. Mr. Headley goes into excruciating detail about his job but offers little insight into the world of Scientology.
Published 3 months ago by Zero


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You've got to laugh..., 10 Aug 2012
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I am SO impressed by this account Marc Headley's experience of Scientology and of his eventual escape. Why? Because Scientology is G R I M, controlling, arbitrary and often downright cruel in its dealings with members, whom it keeps in a state of perpetual tension and anxiety lest they unwittingly fall foul of a more senior official or transgress some boundary of which they have not even been aware - yet after many years in what amounts to a fascist dictatorship, Marc Headley has somehow managed to retain his sense of the absurd, and to keep a sense of humour even when enduring all the restrictions and inconveniences of life as a Scientologist. I must admit to laughing out loud on a number of occasions, simply because of the way Marc writes his account of incidents that are far from laughable in themselves, yet he manages somehow to describe them so that without in any way dismissing their innate unpleasantness, the reader can smile, chuckle, and as a result realise very clearly the ludicrous nature of the entire organisation.

The determination displayed by the organisation to retain those who "blow" (run away) is itself absurd. Why would a so-called "church" (or indeed any organisation) WANT to force unwilling members to continue their membership? It is fascism writ large, and I can only rejoice and admire people like Marc who have had the courage to see the reality of it and take the decision to leave. Scientology appears to be a deeply sinister construct, totalitarian in its outlook, utterly convinced of its own rectitude and the validity of its own beliefs, and yet wholly determined not only to prevent defection from its ranks, but to condemn wholesale those who disagree with its beliefs. In fact, it seems that the intended consequences for those who will not convert are to be as like the Final Solution in Hitler's Germany as can be imagined.

There are, according to Headley, numerous cases of members who have just "disappeared", and nobody knows where they are or what has become of them. Nobody asks questions, since questioning is likely to lead to their own "disappearance". There are also a few cases where some members have a very good idea of what has become of someone who just vanishes never to be seen again - because when you believe that you and you alone are right, sometimes the Final Solution is the only answer to someone you view as a renegade. It's a great creed for those who want ultimate power - and yet within the organisation, there is only ONE person who has that kind of authority, and that is David Miscavige. Even those who are very high up in the official hierarchy are never guaranteed their place is secure. If the Leader takes a dislike to something done or in his view badly done, anyone can either disappear, or suffer dramatic and ignominious demotion to the ranks.

Scientology is a one-man dictatorship. Most of us know where that leads. Members are expected to be celibate unless they marry, permission for which must be obtained from the Leader, and which may be refused. Once married, they are not allowed to have children unless the Leader gives permission, and again, that is often refused. The Leader is not expected to provide a reason for refusal. As a result, any married couples who find that the wife is pregnant without permission, are "encouraged" to have an abortion. The "encouragement" leads to growing pressure, which becomes for most people in that situation, well nigh irresistible. Marc Headley and his wife, who escaped after him, have made a new life for themselves and now have two healthy children. Unfortunately, the outcome is often much less happy for others, who either don't think of leaving, or who try to, and are caught and returned to face sometimes years of degrading treatment as a punishment.

The only people who don't suffer from these pressures are the high profile and wealthy members, who are pampered and feted, and allowed to continue living as they like, for the financial donations the Scientologists can expect from them. I can't forget that Scientology is the "religion" INVENTED by L Ron Hubbard, a science fiction writer, who actually said at some point in his life that if you want to make a fortune, you should invent a new religion. It seems in that, if in little else in his life, he was spot on.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read, 2 Oct 2012
By 
Mr. C. S. Lancaster "ChrisL1981" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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A must read for anyone with an interest in Scientology. Although not much is really discussed about the actual LRH 'TECH' there is a lot of behind the scenes information and first person experiences about life in the Church. *spoiler alert*A great read and unlike lot of similar stories this one has a happy ending.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't know they were so evil!, 12 Aug 2012
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This was an easy to read book, well written. It exposed Scientology for the evil it does. I didn't know they were so bad.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book, 12 Jan 2013
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Fantastic book. Very informative. Easy to read funny at times but makes you understand the seriousness of the abuses which exists in a lot of organizations. I've studied and read all LRH tech. Some philosophical aspects to me are good ways of thinking. However this book showed how it can be used for
Bad. Excellent book Mr Bradley. Really please I read it.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One man's story of his entry in to and escape from the cult., 11 Jun 2011
Blown for Good is an excellent read and provides one man's story of his experiences in and after the cult of scientology.

If you have no idea about the church of scientology or have only heard about it from the adverts this is a good book to read that gives some insight in to why so much controversy surrounds the church of scientology and what lurks behind the façade of this 1950's sci-fi religion come self help group.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping account of life on the inside., 20 Dec 2013
By 
J.C.D. (North Wales) - See all my reviews
Initially, I was unsure whether or not I would enjoy 'Blown for Good' - during the first few pages, it became clear that this is not the typical ghost-written autobiography of someone looking to cash in on their unusual experience. To that end, the book is not written in such a polished manner as other journalistic accounts of Scientology and comes across - initially at least - as being somewhat crude. I felt that Headley relaxed into a better writing style as the book progressed, and it ultimately became a very personable book to read.

This book is aimed at former and current members of Scientology. I am the former, having left the organisation some years ago. The tale assumes some degree of knowledge of Scientology practices (there is no 'back story' for the uninitiated, I would suggest reading Lawrence Wright's excellent 'Going Clear' before reading this if you have a limited or no understanding of Scientology) and it is filled with Scientology jargon and abbreviations, therefore some background reading may be helpful to newcomers to the field. This is not a criticism of Headley's book; it is clear that he has a specific audience in mind and that is no bad thing. Whilst this is not the most accessible book in the area of Scientology criticism, is is certainly one of the most authentic.

Headley's experience centres around Scientology's International Base in Gilman Hot Springs, CA. For its own part, Scientology has vociferously denied claims made in the book, and has seemingly launched a campaign of personal attacks on the author. This is a becoming a common theme, which brings me on to the point of bias. Of course this book is biased, but that does not mean it is not truthful. Time and time again, accounts from former members corroborate one another as testament to the abusive working practices within Scientology's Sea Organisation - to me, the point has been well and truly proven. Headley's memories are detailed and plausible. I have no doubt as to his honesty.

As a closing point, I would add that this book is not really about Scientology, it is about the leadership of Scientology. There is little or no discussion on the practises of the Scientology 'religion', but rather an in-depth account of life within its upper echelons. This is a very important book, and one that deserves significantly more recognition. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very compelling read, 18 Sep 2013
I have recently started reading about Scientology on the interwebs and this book was recommended to me. I had to laugh and cry, it's unbelievable that a cult like Scientology is allowed to carry on its criminal activities unimpeded. Good for Marc Headley for speaking out despite the cost to himself. I can definitely recommend this to anyone who is interested in learning more about this cult.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, 13 May 2013
A good read for anyone interested in what goes on behind the scenes in Scientology. It's far from boring and gives a pretty detailed account of one mans life working directly under the unhinged head of scientology.

I just hope I'm not "fair gamed" for writing this short review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A comprehensively excellent in-depth examination of life within scientology, 14 Jan 2013
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My eyes have been well and truly opened by this book as to the full extent of just how insidious, incompetent and totally incapacitating the scientology organisation can be to those who work within it.

I have ready quite a few accounts of life within scientology. Most, for good reason have a strong element of having an axe to grind. However, one of the outstandingly positive features of this book is that it simply relates exactly what went on and lets you decide for yourself.

I cannot reccommend this book highly enough. For both those who have come through working within scientology, those who have paid for services or those who are coming to the subject for the first time this book will provide you with an incredibly well-described insight into this organisation.

One of the main characters in the book, David Miscavige is portrayed in all his ugly, domineering, incompetent, egotistical and violent detail. Surely there have been few people who have attained such power who were so clearly so incabable of wielding it sanely. The man creates devastation, confusion, and terror whatever he touches, undermining morale at every step. He is the unbridled dictator of scientology and abuses his position at every possible opportunity.

If you wish to understand just how corrupting and entrapping the scientology organisation is you will without doubt experience it here in this gem of a book. We must certainly pity those still trapped within scientology, fearful if they leave of being unable forevermore to communicate with those they love most, whether they be husbands, wives, children, parents, grandparents or lifelong friends.

I was so impressed with this book and would urge everyone interested in freedom and its opposite to read it. The more people who do the more who will be immune to both the enticement and the entrapment of scientology.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 4 Jun 2014
I am fascinated by books from Scientologists who can shed some light on the religion. Beyond Belief. However this book is very poorly written. The spelling and the grammatical errors were were distracting. Mr. Headley goes into excruciating detail about his job but offers little insight into the world of Scientology.
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