Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Editorial: My Cult of Choice

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Alley: Free and Clear

Did you know that you can join the Church of Scientology and be a Catholic, too? Yeah, that's what the Church of Scientology says. Cool, huh? Because, let's face it - sometimes Catholicism just isn't that personally fulfilling.

Several celebrities claim that Scientology has done amazing things for them. It helped Tom Cruise beat his dyslexia. Scientology enabled Kelly Preston to see colors more clearly (good news to millions of Americans, I'm sure!), it aided in the launch of John Travolta's career, and it enabled Kirstie Alley kick cocaine in just one auditing session. Just one!

Celebrities like Cruise, Alley and John Travolta were so impressed with what Scientology could do for them, they quit the Catholic faith (Despite the Church of Scientology's generous offer than you can do both.) Can you blame them, though? Really, why bother with all the suffering life dishes out when you can have a multi-million dollar career in TV or film, and see colors in a brighter and more phenomenal way?

Alley said she is a believer in Scientology because it helped her overcome her drug dependency. But there is one thing Scientology couldn't do for her: help her overcome her love for twinkies and ding-dongs. Yes, even Scientology has its limits. No matter how 'clear' she got, she just couldn't resist that third helping of garlic mashed potatoes. So where did she turn - back to the Catholic Church with its emphasis on moderation and self-control? Heck, no.

She turned to Jenny Craig. And she lost weight and looks great!

According to the Jenny Craig website, the ultimate goal of the program is to transition you from Jenny Craig Menus to planning your own menus, so that you can learn to shop, cook and socialize with foods. Wow!Socialize with foods! Is that a grammatical error or can I really have a deep and fulfilling relationship with that slice of pizza I am about to have?

I can learn to shop and cook the Jenny way. On the website,There is a Jenny Store, where you can buy recipe
books and audio tapes, read inspirational stories, and trade recipes. There are even meetings I can attend where I can meet with other women and talk about food and my problems with food. No wonder Kirstie is losing weight. This is amazing. I can think about food 24/7 and meet others who share my compulsion. This sounds so much more fulfilling to me than anorexia or bulimia - less lonely, too!

Believe me, if you are going to be Catholic and join a cult, wouldn't it make more sense to join Jenny Craig? At the end, you are going to look so much better. What would you rather be - clear or thin? And isn't that what life is all about - looking your best, being thin, and having money so you can flaunt it in front of others and make yourself feel superior? Of course it is! That's the Catholic American way. You can be Catholic and be extremely successful, happy and fulfilled in this life, too. Skip all that suffering stuff. That is just for saints in dusty hardback books. You need to treat yourself right, pamper yourself, and look good. That's your vocation, obviously, since you enjoy it (and of course, we are only called to things we enjoy). Cultivating virtues takes a long time, if even possible. Instead, let's find ways to throw aside the crosses that weigh us down in this life. We'll be happier we did.

Striving to be a Higher Being