Tom Cruise says Scientology helped him overcome dyslexia
MADRID (AFP) — US actor Tom Cruise, one of Scientology‘s best-known adherents, overcame the effects of his dyslexia thanks to the church’s teachings, he said in an interview published on Sunday.
He told “XL Semanal,” the weekly magazine supplement of daily Spanish newspaper ABC, that at the age of seven he was diagnosed as having the language-based learning disability that can include problems in reading, spelling, writing and pronouncing words.
“I asked myself if I was normal or an idiot. I would try to concentrate but I felt anxiety, frustration, boredom. When I graduated from high school in 1980 I was functionally illiterate,” he said.
“Nobody gave me a solution and I wanted to know why the system had failed. Finally, as an adult I learned to read perfectly through the method of (Scientology’s late founder) L. Ron Hubbard,” the 46-year-old added.
The Church of Scientology, founded in 1954 in the United States by Hubbard, a science-fiction writer, teaches that technology can expand the mind and help solve problems.
XL Semanal said the interview was conducted in Los Angeles, but did not say when. A transcript of Cruise’s original comments in English was not available.
In 2003 Cruise also got some mileage out of his claim that Scientology helped cure his dyslexia. Among the negative criticism heard at the time were statements made by Thomas Viall, executive director of the prestigious International Dyslexia Association, and Philip Pasho, executive director of the National Dyslexic Foundation.
Aside from its dubious medical claims, the Scientology cult is also involved in an extended hate campaign against psychiatry.