Next step up! Kirstie Alley opened up to Howard Stern on his SiriusXM radio show on Monday, Jan. 12, about practicing Scientology and defending her beliefs from the general public and former members of the church, including Leah Remini.
Alley, 64, confirmed to Stern that she had recently reached the OT-7 level in the church’s hierarchy of achievements. “It means that you have gotten rid of all the things that would create aberrated behavior in you that you didn’t want,” the Look Who’s Talking star explained. (For Scientologists, aberration is a form of insanity that arises from painful hidden memories.) “It’s an awareness level,” she continued. “It’s an achievement.”
The Drop Dead Gorgeous actress added that maintaining this level of awareness was her priority. “I think that people need to always — no matter what path they choose — the goal I hope would be to become more and more aware,” she noted, “and less insane.”
Stern went on to tease Alley about whether she was an actual member of the Church of Scientology, or if the face of Jenny Craig was serving as a paid celebrity spokesperson for the religion. “I’m not some f–king fake OT-7!” Alley retorted.
Alley’s always-outspoken commitment to the church made headlines in late 2013, when another famous star, Leah Remini, opted to leave the religion and spoke out against it. Remini, 44, claimed at the time that she had been shunned by the church, which prompted Alley to slam the King of Queens star in a now-infamous feud.
“She left the religion and she was very critical,” Alley told Stern on Monday. “That’s just sort of water under the bridge. There’s nothing going on and there was nothing going on for years. I didn’t shun her, but if a lot of people are rejecting you, at some point you gotta ask, ‘What am I doing?’ I mean, that’s what I would have asked myself.”
The mother of two — Lillie, 20, and William, 22 (her kids with ex-husband Parker Stevenson) — also claimed during the interview that her kids decided to become Scientologists. “It was their choice,” she said. “It really helped them a lot so that’s good.”
Most recently, Lillie and the family as a whole endured a personal tragedy. Alley opened up to Stern about the tragic motorcycle crash that claimed the life of her daughter’s fiancé, Nick Trela, at age 23 last November.
“It’s the worst thing that ever happened in our lives,” she said of Lillie’s love of four years. “He was clearly one of the most awesome men I have ever met in my life. He could do anything… He would build me trails to get to the Lemur compound.” (That’s right, Alley owns a mini zoo filled with the furry creatures!)
“The loss is so great,” she concluded, “because if I lean on the wall, he built the wall.”
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