CREDOS: Silent birth — I

Since actor Tom Cruise, a Scientologist, announced that he and actress Katie Holmes would follow the Scientology practice of “silent birth” when their baby was born, there has been widespread speculation about what’s behind this idea and what it involves. On April 18, the day Cruise and Holmes’ baby was born, Rev. John Carmichael, president of the Church of Scientology in New York, explained Scientology’s views on childbirth, parent-child relationship, and child development.

What is “silent birth”?

Silent birth is having a quiet or gentle birth, and it’s all about providing the best environment for the birthing mother and her new baby. It’s labour and delivery done in a calm and loving environment with no spoken words by everyone present as much as possible. Obviously, there will be times that that’s not practical, but that’s the intention and the general plan. Doctors and nurses’ shout “Push! Push!” and remarks, even if they’re meant as “encouragement,” those are things we’re trying to avoid.

Why practice silent birth?

It’s based on L Ron Hubbard’s research into the mind and spirit. He found that words spoken during pain and unconsciousness could have effects on an individual later in life. It’s called the reactive mind. Anyone can read about this in the book ‘Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health’, but mothers who are familiar with this, naturally want to give their baby the best possible start in life. —