New Religions: 0 to 60 in 10 Seconds

L Ron pretending the take electrical measurements from a tomato

I’m currently reading a biography of L Ron Hubbard, and I am really amazed at how quickly people adopted his Dianetics programs. The book Dianetics was originally published in May 1950, and by June they had a few dozen people paying $500 dollars (equivalent of over $4,000 today)  for a course taught by Hubbard despite the fact that they book was receiving terrible reviews (Isaac Asimov called it “gibberish”)..

By August the Hubbard Dianetic Research Foundation of California was formed and he filled the 6,500 seat Shrine Auditorium with the first Dianetics convention. The convention had it’s shares of faux pas and heckling from the audience, but even after that debacle money kept pouring in from people begging to take courses (still at $500 a pop).

So just remember kids, when inventing a new religion, don’t worry about finding an audience. There’s already one out there waiting.

Explore posts in the same categories: Superstition in the Modern World

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