One of the biggest questions raised by Alex Gibney’s recent expose of the Church Of Scientology, Going Clear: Scientology And The Prison Of Belief, is why Scientology meetings combine the interior-decorating sensibilities of a Nazi rally and an especially gaudy Indian restaurant. Seriously, it conjures up all sorts of crazy, conflicting emotions. Oh, and what kind of dirt does Scientology have on John Travolta?
John Travolta isn’t telling, obviously. Before the film came out, Travolta told the press that he wouldn’t be seeing the film, a promise he has apparently kept. But he’s talking about Going Clear anyway, telling the Tampa Bay Times (Scientology’s spiritual headquarters, a building known as the Flag Building or—no kidding—the Super Power Building, is located in nearby Clearwater, Florida) that “I’ve been brought through storms that were insurmountable, and [Scientology has] been so beautiful for me, that I can’t even imagine attacking it.”
Travolta went on to say that, “I haven’t experienced anything that [was claimed in the documentary], so why would I communicate something that wasn’t true for me?,” adding, “It wouldn’t make sense, nor would it for Tom, I imagine.” (He’s referring to fellow prominent Scientologist Tom Cruise, a technique Scientologists refer to as the “name-drop tech.”) He also says that Scientology helped him cope with the sudden death of his son Jett in 2009, which is an inarguable good thing.
“I’ve helped so many people through hard times,” Travolta says. “Loss of children, loved ones, physical illnesses. Through many tough, tough life situations I’ve used the technology to support them and help them. It’s always worked.” You could say the same thing about life philosophies that don’t have a history of espionage, secret camps where members are detained months or years at a time, and criminal charges against their members. But then again, what religion doesn’t have some sort of blood on its hands?