The Way to Deception

The Bible has been outlawed from the classroom, the Ten Commandments have been stripped from the walls . . . yet parents still want schools to teach "values." What's a teacher to do? For many teachers, the answer seemed to fall right into their laps when a pocket-sized booklet came in the mail. Entitled The Way to Happiness, the booklet claimed to give "the first nonreligious moral code based wholly on common sense." Better yet, The Way to Happiness was offered free of charge from a private foundation. What teacher could resist? Seven thousand schools across the country began using the booklet to teach values. Only those who read the fine print noticed that the book was written by L. Ron Hubbard. And only those who were religiously informed recognized who Hubbard is: founder of the Church of Scientology, one of the wealthiest and most aggressive cults in the world. According to a Newsweek article, The Way to Happiness is based squarely on Hubbard's writings, which Scientologists reverence the way Christians reverence the Bible. Of course, being designed for public schools, the book consists mostly of innocuous rules such as "be worthy of trust" and "honor and help your parents." But mingled in are teachings from Scientology—especially its pervasive moral relativism, expressed in phrases like "truth is whatever is true for you." With The Way to Happiness, the Church of Scientology is trying to infiltrate the mainstream—and public school teachers are not the only ones taken in by it. A Scientology front group, Concerned Businessmen's Association of America, runs an anti-drug program that has won widespread attention from school and civic leaders. The core of the program is a little booklet called—you guessed it—The Way to Happiness. The book is even used in some prison-based drug programs. Scientologists hope that The Way to Happiness will be a gateway into the cult—that people who like the book will reach for other writings by L. Ron Hubbard. Those who do will discover a bizarre world. Hubbard was a former science-fiction writer who taught that people's problems stem from residues of bad experiences suffered in past lives. Those residues can be erased using an electronic device called an "E-meter," similar to a lie detector. What's more, Hubbard taught that our past lives can be traced back 75 million years when the earth was invaded by extraterrestrial spiritual beings known as Thetans. The teachers who received free copies of The Way to Happiness knew none of this bizarre background, of course. All they knew was that someone was finally helping them with the troublesome task of teaching values. What about you? If your child came home with a book authored by L. Ron Hubbard, would you know who he was? Would you recognize the teachings of Scientology laced through the text? Have you checked to see whether your child's school is using The Way to Happiness? Today more than ever Christians need to educate themselves and their children. The public schools have become values vacuums. And as truth is banished from the classroom, cults and chaos are sure to come rushing in.


Chuck Colson


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