John Duignan, 45
Interview by Charlotte Philby
Saturday, 21 February 2009
Mine was an uneasy childhood. My father was schizophrenic and had bouts of manic depression. He and my mother both died when I was 10 years old, and my siblings and I moved from Scotland to Ireland, to live with my mother? relatives.
As a teenager, I started to find the idea of an all-encompassing God and protector alluring, and in 1984, moved to a small village in Germany. Here, I discovered Scientology. I was in a bad way one afternoon, walking the streets of Stuttgart, when a young lady approached me: ?o you have a good memory??she asked. I agreed to join her at the local Scientology centre, to find out.
The centre was filled with friendly, efficient people. It all seemed very official and scientific. I took tests which revealed I needed counselling, or ?uditing? I found the ?cience?aspect very seductive, and quickly became involved in the group.
After two weeks, I was taken with the teachings of [Scientology? founder] L Ron Hubbard. He was my guru, and I started to see less of my girlfriend and friends.