Organised religion. I share the bulk of my compatriot’s Dawkinsian outlook on these things. Yet each to their own. Except, it seems, when that ‘own’ is Scientology.
The press have fallen over themselves to lambast these guys in the wake of the TomKat split. Even locals in Bali talked to me about it.
Reading one of the many despairing articles reminded me of my own brush with them. Way back in the 80s.
Besuited, I was headed for an interview. Having plenty of time on my hands to travel across London, I took advantage of the pleasant April day to walk from Euston station down Tottenham Court Road towards Oxford Street.
About halfway, a woman stopped me and asked me if I could help. Simply step into a storefront, sit and fill in a personality questionnaire. It would only take forty minutes.
Almost two hours later, I left, laughing at the experience.
I remember describing to my father the strange yellow posters plastered all over the place. For a book called Dianetics by an L Ron Hubbard. I’d never heard of him, but I was soon filled in.
After I completed the survey (which I answered carefully and properly) the same lady said if I wanted someone would give me feedback. I stayed.
What then followed was me receiving half an hour of abuse. I was a loser. Plain and simple. I was going to have real trouble in life. Look out.
It was a verbal battering.
Beign made of stern stuff, I considered all the negative feedback utter nonsense.
But then, she suggested my life could be roses. All I need do was commit to joining them.
The close was amazing. Knock someone down. Continually, brutally, then offer a solution. It was never going to work. Yet apparently they boast squillions who have gone for it.
I wonder how far this is from how we sell our solutions?
Wallow in a prospect’s misery. Compound their issues. Make mountains out of molehills. Enlarge the problems.
When they’re at their lowest, we go in. “Here’s the answer!”
Is that how it’s mostly done? Are we mere salestologists?