Today’s run was peaceful. It was my new regular one up to the Amtrak bridge that crosses the Hudson. The air was mild and the smell of the river was pleasing. Life is blooming all around us now. It’s green again! The deep greens of June will soon be upon us and the heat will come and diminish them a bit, but it’s still nice while it happens. The run helped to calm me and to bring some stillness to my mind and my soul. I am still feeling it some nine hours later. I guess there’s something chemical about it all. And there’s something chemical about all of life from digestion, to sex to smiling and laughing. It’s how one controls–with is mind and soul–those chemicals that can make the difference.

I’ve been reading about the cult Scientology recently As a curiosity I’ve been learning more about it, for it holds NO practical or spiritual value. It is worthless, an utter fictitious creation of a mad man bent on manipulating people for money and more so for power. L. Ron Hubbard has been dead since before Mookie Wilson hit a slow roller between Bill Buckner’s leg and is thus irrelevant as a sentient person. Nevertheless, these days the public sees the very public face of his creation, a paranoid smirking jackass named Tom Cruise.

Cruise himself would not be such a problem if it weren’t for his voiceferous pronouncements against the well-meaning though admittedly imperfect science of psychiatry. To Cruise and fellow adherents of his religion, man is more than chemicals (which I am bound to agree) so therefore a science that seeks to solve his problems by dealing with his chemicals undermines him. Instead of addressing the very real needs of the soul, this brainwashing cult instead pushes the gobblygook (sp.) of past lives and birth memories and a crackpot theory of “engrams” in someone’s head. It is reasonable to expect and want more from life than the bare reductionism of science, but to embrace nonsense with no historical, scientific or rationally based inspection is dangerous. It is what has lead to the proliferation of fringe groups and cults since probably the beginning of time. Cults engender group thinking, extreme isolation and paranoia.

Like Cruise’s “friend” Brooke Shields (I suspect theirs is a cursory friendship), I too have experienced psychiatric ups and downs in my 27-plus years on THIS planet. And like Shields, who is as strikingly beautiful as she was more than 20 years ago, I have benefited, although not exclusively from psychiatric medicine that have helped to regulate my anxiety and stabilize my mood and mostly assist with my developing behavioral means to deal with problems. Genetically, it seems as if I have been dealt some cards that I can’t just hand in but will have to instead play with.

Just like a run helps the brain by producing more neurotransmitters, medications can help many people who have a range of psychiatric disorders ranging from the mild (what I have) Obsessive Compulsive Disorder to the extreme Schizophrenia. To question psychiatry is fine, but to cast it away lends the whole “religion”…errr…business of Scientology to suspicion. After all, cults from Nazism to Communism to the People’s Temple all needed enemies. Scientology has it’s enemy in a well-meaning science that has helped people including myself and Brooke Shields (we go way back!) in our own way.

In the end, I still believe–in spite of some evidence otherwise–that man is a sentient, God-endowed, soul-bearing being. His time on Earth is enhanced by his ability to use his mind and soul to conquer himself, regulate his urges and live a more full life. My run outside today helped not only to calm my nerves but to give me some insight to my worries. The medication I take helps to calm my brain and lower the volume on the false alarm that OCD sends to me warning me of danger everywhere. Unlike that jackass Tom Cruise, I’m masking nothing but trying to help myself live more positively, which I don’t always do.

So, instead of perpetuating a mind-bending cult, maybe Mr. Cruise should call up his pal Brooke Shields and see if she wants to go for a run. It may help him put things in perspective for awhile. Not to mention giving Katie Holmes a break to plan her escape.