Posts tagged ‘dc’
I snapped this pic on my way back to the Metro today. It’s awful nice to see the Fraser Mansion back in action as the new Church of Scientology National Office. I’ve got so many fantastic memories of being on staff there – I know virtually every square inch of that building. Well, at least I used to. The renos in the building for its new purpose as a meeting ground for all of the Church’s social betterment programs has definitely changed a few of the spaces.
Church of Scientology of Washington D.C., Academy Signage, originally uploaded by tadnkat.
Probably one of my favorite parts about the Scientology religion is that one of the main practices of the religion itself involves one simply studying the basic texts of the religion, and working out for oneself how it applies to one’s life.
I never know what it is I’m going to get out of it when I sit down and study. Last night, it led me to this article which I posted today. Sometimes it’s something entirely unexpected that I come to have an understanding of that ‘s just been bugging me personally. But it’s always quite personal — just me and a book, or in the case today – me and a lecture by Mr. Hubbard. I’m not being told what to think or how to think, but am able to work out for myself how some very basics concepts of life fit together.
Like I said in a question & answer post I gave to a college student – one of the things I like best about being a Scientologist is that it provides a constant & steady path for enhancement – a way to be able to learn about life and turn around and apply that to the normal problems of living. I’m nowhere near perfect as a husband, a daddy, a sys admin, or as a member of my town, but little by little, I’m trying to fix the imperfections I can see I have – and that’s pretty satisfying.
“What is the IAS?”
There’s a question I get asked quite often when I’m wearing my shirts that state I’m a member of the International Association of Scientologists, one I’m bound to get asked all the more often now that my family are all Patrons of the Association.
One fellow that I did web engineering with saw me wearing a shirt with a torch on it that said, “Crusader” and said, “Crusader – I think I’ve heard of those guys.” – thinking it was a vendor we worked with.
No, folks, I proudly sport those shirts because I’m a contributing member of the International Association of Scientologists – something I’m extremely proud of.
The IAS is the official membership organization of the Scientology religion, being made up of individual Scientologists who truly want to change conditions on this planet for the better. The purpose of the International Association of Scientologists is:
To unite, advance, support and protect the Scientology religion and Scientologists in all parts of the world, so as to achieve the aims of Scientology as originated by L. Ron Hubbard.
Now, in practical terms, here’s what IAS members do, and what the IAS as a whole accomplishes, which I’m very much a supporter of:
The Volunteer Minister Program:
One program that the IAS supports that I’ve been intimately involved in is the Scientology Volunteer Minister program. I’ve worked personally to get volunteers out to disaster sites like after the earthquakes in Haiti, the Indian Ocean Tsunami, Chinese earthquakes, Hurricane Katrina, and others. Volunteer Ministers are known for their ability to calm down & bring order to disorderly surroundings, and to also thereby work hand in hand with disaster response forces to clean up these major disaster sites. But also, those same principles that make Scientology Volunteer Ministers effective in major upheavals also make them effective in smaller disasters – like kids with bonked heads, parents with upsets, or children needing to study better. It’s such an effective program that gets such excellent results, that I love supporting it.
The amazing surge of life & activity in and around the Founding Church of Scientology in Washington, D.C. these days has inspired me to write a bit on my time as a Scientology staff member, one of the most amazing periods of my life which I’ll cherish forever.
In an absolutely futile attempt to encapsulate the experience in a few words, I’ll say this: My time as a Scientology staff member was easily the most fun, the most challenging, rewarding, and the most life-changing experience I’ve ever undertaken. And I say that with no qualifiers, and no exceptions.
That obviously begs the question of “why”. That, unfortunately takes a bit longer to express, but if you’ll bear with me, I’ll attempt to articulate.
Prior to my being on staff, I had a life which (I say now in retrospective) was a bit flat and purposeless. I had gotten a string of excellent IT jobs that made great money, and had no problem, really, acquiring any car, computer, vacation, or other worldly item I wanted. However, my activities were unpleasantly self-oriented, and I knew that. There’s only so much gratification one can get from helping oneself, and oneself only.
Once one has a great car, a nice house, all the computer equipment one could ask for, and a body in good health, one sort of realizes that there’s got to be a bigger game – and a cooler one too that doesn’t just involve oneself.
I then started dating a girl (now my wife of 11 years) who was a staff member at the Founding Church of Scientology in Washington, DC. After weeks of observing her and the fun she was having as a staff member, I decided to take a break from computer networking and take up a position on staff at the Church.
I honestly had no idea the number of changes that would make in me, all of them changes for the better.
To sum up a few points:
- I was able to make a real difference in an organization providing honest, effective help to others. I couldn’t begin to count up the vast numbers of saved marriages, saved careers, happier families, smarter kids, more effective businessmen, and empowered individuals that I personally witnessed when on staff in DC. Week in and week out, there was just person after person, helped individually with whatever it was that was most ruining their life.The work I personally did was mainly with personnel, seeing to it that there were people there to do the work, that they knew their jobs, that they were happy at it, and could be effective at it. Made it all the more fun when areas of the organization I helped establish then went on to create products like those mentioned above.
- It was immensely challenging. I had done things before which I felt were challenging, but nothing compared to this. The job I walked into required I learn how to do virtually every job in the organization, and to understand in detail how each part of the Church contributes to the whole. As such, it wasn’t until I stepped on staff that I really started to get an idea of my own limitations and how far I could really push myself – how fast could I learn, how fast could I adapt to something new, how effective could I be, etc.I think any staff member knows exactly what I’m talking about, and anyone who hasn’t yet tried it just plain won’t know until you do.
- Oh, my good lord, is it just the most FUN group to work with. I can’t emphasize enough how much fun it is to work with a positive, energetic-beyond-comprehension, gung-ho group of folks who each of them came on board to work with the Church for the right reasons – to make the planet a better place one individual at a time.
It’s that last part I’m reminded of constantly now that I get to rub elbows with the Church Staff here on a regular basis. They are the most caring, fantastic, outrageous, amazing people I’ve ever known, people that I am just utterly proud to say are my friends.
Founding Church of Scientology of Washington, DC, Embassy Building, Night, originally uploaded by tadnkat.
Any of you who are remotely close to me (or who follow my Flickr updates) know that I recently had my second child, a bubbly baby boy. And whilst the story of how he came into the world is a somewhat colorful one (one I’ll record for posterity on my Scientology Parent site), I just wanted to take a few seconds to just say how much I appreciate the support I’ve had from my friends – the staff at the Founding Church of Scientology in Washington, D.C.
It was heartwarming to have such a group of caring, spirited, and genuinely thoughtful folks there at the Church – who at every turn have been thinking with how to make this baby be as trouble-free and as comfortable as possible for my wife and I.
Starting with an incredible Scientology pregnancy assist program which relieved a LOT of stress for my wife, and proceeding through visits at home, and even a box sent to us at the hospital full of goodies for the new baby.
It was just so thoughtful and helpful all along, that it just makes me glad to be a part of the Scientology community here and have friends who actually care about us.
So, thanks again from my wife and I – I really love you guys.