Though L. Ron Hubbard has been dead for over 30 years, Scientology is still has a following, despite the claims made by documentaries like Going Clear. The Church of Scientology has been accused of several criminal acts, from tax fraud to destroying families to physical abuse.
Before Hubbard founded Scientology, he was deeply involved in the occult and black magic. He didn't outright state his beliefs and he largely hid his inclinations from his staff and followers, but many claim Hubbard believed he was the reincarnation of Satan. His son has leveled allegations against the religious leader over the years. Many of the allegations have been verified by the reports and memoirs of those who have left the church. Despite the fact that Hubbard is long gone, his strong views on women, rape, homosexuality, and more still permeate the tenants of Scientology today.
Before creating Scientology, Hubbard was part of the counterculture he later capitalized upon as he convinced young people to join him and his Sea Org. In August of 1945, Hubbard met Jack Parsons, a fan of the occult and a literal rocket scientist; specifically, he admired black magic guru Aleister Crowley, who was known to followers as "Beast 666."
Hubbard was allegedly eager to help Parsons with his occult rituals, and Parsons thought Hubbard was gifted in magic. The two reportedly began a sex ritual they called the "Babalon Working," an attempt to create what Crowley called a "moonchild." The ritual involved Hubbard chanting and "summoning" Bablon while Parsons had sex with a woman, in the hopes of conceiving said moonchild.
Hubbard's interest in black magick never waned, according to his son, Ron DeWolf. DeWolf said that Scientology was "black magic spread out over a long time."
Hubbard's son, Ron DeWolf, said he and his father abused a litany of drugs, "like cocaine, peyote, amphetamines, and barbiturates." Hubbard encourage his son to partake in the substance abuse with him, even attempting to lace DeWolf's bubble gum with phenobarbital when the boy was just 10 years old — according to DeWolf himself.
Hubbard's son also explains Hubbard believed drugs helped him to access the black magic realm.
Hubbard used adolescent girls, who he called his "Messengers," to deliver his orders and messages to his followers. The young girls were told to imitate his voice when doing this.
In filing for divorce, Hubbard's ex-wife revealed Hubbard was a paranoid schizophrenic by doctors hired to evaluate him. She also accused Hubbard of "systemic torture" when he beat her or denied her sleep.
One of Hubbard's private letters seems to suggest he acknowledged his affliction:
"I cannot account for nor rise above long periods of moroseness and suicidal inclinations, and have newly come to realize that I must first triumph above this before I can hope to rehabilitate myself at all," he said.
When L. Ron Hubbard became the father of Scientology, he started championing another cause.
Letters Hubbard wrote to H.F. Verwoerd provided a picture of Hubbard's support for the South African apartheid, where he pledged his allegiance to the apartheid government. He supported the resettlement of black citizens, saying, "... You have conceived and created...what is probably the most impressive and adequate resettlement activity in existence." Hubbard also wrote those who opposed forced resettlement were "scoundrels or madmen."