Our Saturday dose of Terra Cognita’s thought-provoking views on scientology
A Few Words about Being “On Course” in Scientology
Most all Scientologists have a longstanding love/hate relationship with studying Scientology. In the beginning, members are excited to learn all about L. Ron Hubbard’s revolutionary mind/spirit technology. All too soon, they hate having to “put in the time.” Which in the world of Scientology is no small commitment.
LRH famously wrote, “A cleared cannibal is a cleared cannibal.” Which means you can “clear” a man of all those past traumas adversely affecting him, but unless you train him properly in Scientology technology, he won’t operate well in life. He won’t “flourish and prosper.” Clearing the cannibal doesn’t guarantee he’ll secure a good-paying job and make hefty donations to his favorite church. He’ll need training for that. Per LRH, training is over half the gains in Scientology.
Education is valuable. Education is important. Knowing the rules of the game is essential. Everyone needs to know how to get down the field and get the ball in the net.
This essay isn’t about whether or not LRH’s tech works and is worth preserving, or if it’s just a bunch of rubbish. This essay is about studying in Scientology.
Time on Course
Most Scientology course rooms are open Monday through Friday, from 7 to 10 (or 6:30 to 9:30) in the evenings, and for those orgs with the staff, in the afternoons from 1 to 6. Most are open on Saturdays and Sundays, from 9 A.M. to 6 P.M. Rarely do orgs or missions have the personnel to open in the mornings.
There is absolutely nothing I enjoy doing for three straight hours without a break. Not watching movies; not walking the dog; not reading a good book; not having sex high on Viagra. For me, doing something for three hours straight without a break is unnatural—if not a bit cruel and unusual.
Students in Scientology are required to put in a minimum of 15 hours per week. Which is a shit-load of hours for the average working bloke. Like me. Who remembers racing home after work, wolfing down a semblance of dinner, and speeding off to course—five days a week, fifty-two weeks per year.
I was raised on fifty-minute classes. From primary school through college, this was the average block of time my poor brain had been conditioned to process at one sitting. As usual, LRH had other ideas. If he could sit in front of a typewriter through the night, working non-stop, people could be expected to study for three measly hours. That last hour could be a real bitch.
As with everything else in Scientology, a student’s production on course must be “statisized” and graphed. Every action performed by students has been assigned an exact number of points. For example, a student gets 10 points for every word he clears; 50 points for every essay he writes; and 100 points for every drill he completes.
These points are wildly arbitrary. And completely meaningless. For instance, a student might write a three-sentence essay while spending thirty minutes clearing a word.
Students are required to keep meticulous records, turn in their accumulated points to the Sup at the end of every course time, and mark their totals on a graph hanging on a wall. The more points, the better.
Since student points are the measure of a supervisor’s production, it’s imperative he squeeze as many points out of his students as possible—often to the detriment of the student.
The nearer students draw to the end of a course, the more they’re pushed by supervisors to put in extra time. Since students receive a thousand bonus points for completing a course, supervisors are keen to crack the whip and get them to finish before Thursday at 2 o’clock (when every staff member’s stats are due). Some sups are relentless, pushing students to attest before they’re ready. Some skimp on drilling. A common refrain I heard from sups was “you don’t have to be perfect; that’s what internships are for.”
Non-optimum Indicators. Yikes!
If one felt “squashed, bent, sort of dizzy, sort of dead, bored and exasperated” after two hours of being on course, one needed to demonstrate what he was studying by moving around a paper clips and polished rocks so as to get more “mass” on the subject (per HCOB, Barriers to Study).
A feeling of confusion or “reelingness,” had nothing to do with the muddled logic or horrific prose a student had been reading; it was because he’d skipped a gradient—gone on to Part B without first mastering Part A. (Once again, per Barriers to Study.)
Last but not least, was the infamous suppressed yawn. Which had nothing to do with lack of sleep, brain overload, or ones ass pressed against a hard surface for two and a half hours. In the world of Scientology, yawns were the unquestionable indicator of having gone by a misunderstood word. Little in life is worse for a Scientologist than bypassing an MU. Pretty much all negative outcomes in a person’s life can be traced back to a word he didn’t fully understand. If Hell exists, the Prince of Darkness has undoubtedly created a special heated course room for those Scientologists who didn’t clear their words. (Their eternity: working forever on one enormous, never-ending word chain using a dinky dictionary—or the full Oxford without the magnifying glass.)
I would bet Mike’s next paycheck that there’s not an ex-Scientologist reading this who hasn’t suppressed a yawn while on course. (Even you, Miraldi.)
The Fuckin CSW
Just as there aren’t any ex-Scientologists who haven’t suppressed yawns while on course, none exist who weren’t forced to concoct CSWs. In Scientology, any request to do anything requires one write a Completed Staff Work, or CSW for short. I could write a whole essay on these fuckers alone. Maybe I will someday.
If for some reason, a student had to miss time on course, he was required to write a CSW to the supervisor—the Sup—explaining in agonizing detail, why he needed to change his schedule and how he was going to make up the time. Holidays, vacations, migraines, triple bypass surgeries, or the death of Grandma Dorothy were no excuse. If you missed a day of course, you were expected to make up the time. For those who couldn’t—like those forced to work for a living—they were sent to Ethics to get their priorities straight.
Often, the poor students slaving away on Saturdays and Sundays were those making up time.
Loved Those Breaks
When I first got into Scientology, (That’s what people do; they “get into” Scientology.) courses ran from 7 to 10, Monday through Friday evenings, with a fifteen minute break from 8:30 to 8:45. People loved these breaks!
These much-needed timeouts gave people a chance to mingle, to get to know one another and form lifelong friendships. People shared grapes and trail mix, tanked up on coffee, and since lung cancer didn’t exist back in the day, some pulled out packs of Marlboros. And lit up indoors!
I met my spouse on one of these breaks!
Not only did these respites give people a chance to unwind, they provided time for the accumulated cognitive dissonance to settle.
A couple of years later, someone up-lines decided these breaks were “out-tech,” and eliminated them. Three whole hours without a break? Noooooo!
And so died the fun and comradery which existed in those early days.
Mums the Word
Unlike in other institutions of learning, Scientologists aren’t allowed to discuss what they’re studying—neither inside nor outside the course room. How crazy is that!
Scientology study groups do not exist. Auditing Dianetics at home with your roommate? Ha, ha. Weighing the merits of a piece of tech or policy over pizza and wine with Bob and Sally? A good Scientologist would rather stick a knife in his eye.
Discussing tech or policy with a Sup or another student is a cardinal sin—inside or outside of a Scientology course room.
A Sup’s standard line to a confused student is “What do your materials state?” That’s it. Doing anything else besides handling the student’s MU, skipped gradient, or lack of mass, is a crime.
Scientologists have been indoctrinated into believing that talking about LRH tech with another constitutes “verbal tech.” Within the church, this is a high crime. The safe thing to do is pull out the reference and quote LRH directly.
So much for the Socratic Method.
Learning should be fun and fulfilling.
Still not Declared,
TIRSA DOPPIERI -MICKELS says
Keep fighting for you. Remember that you belong to you and not the same as the others who folow a man who can not find any one his own size of power and has to pick on those who are not going to be able to believe in their own power. God has been there at your side and never had left you. God is forgiving and you are a child of God and his love for you is real
I’ll pray for you all know that you are not going to be alone.
Tirsa Doppieri – Mickels
Kris Mickels says
I Pray for All of YOU TO SURROUND You with Protection from All the Evil !!!. HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?
Roger Larsson says
On my way to Kings Cross in Sydney, Australia I met scientologists. Life consists of meetings. I followed them to their church at Castleright street and got caught at OT TR 0. Today I had never flunked.
Juan Carlo Ocampo says
interesting , it really takes you into the course room, and I love all the comments too
This article bought back some memories, none of them good. The local org opened at 9.30am during the week and went on till 9.30pm Lunch was 12-1, then course was 1-6pm with a 15m break around 3pm. Evening was 7pm -9.30pm with no break. It was a gruesome schedule and few people actually adhered to it, they let us get away with a lot less because it quickly became obvious that trying to push working people to do more upset them and had the opposite effect. Weekends were the ‘busiest’ time in the course room and you could expect almost 10 people in there, wow! During the week it was not uncommon for me to be the only one there in the evening.
I don’t know why they insisted on such long periods studying, some seemed ok with it but many claimed to be bad students, or bad studiers as an excuse not to be there. I subtley reduced my attendance to the barest minimum and then played the game of how much yawning i could get away with without the distracted supervisor noticing. It really was a waste of time and looking back I don’t know why I did it.
When I started in 1972, in my org there was no student points. I think not before 1976.
Studying was quite fun and I could yawn without to be said “do you have a misunderstood word ?”. Sup was really interested by my questions and answering it by demonstrating.
Hubbard wrote the first reason a student blow is interruption by supervisor. From 1982 student went ALWAYS interrupted. Loosing their self determinism. One has to understand the extreme robotic mind of Miscavige. This men has fully and completely destroyed scientology. He was not alone, robotic people are the plague of human kind.
Philosopher Hannah Arendt show them as purveyor of “banality of evil”. Followers of Miscavige are like those who followed Hitler, Himmler, Heydrich. Miscavige looks strangely like Goebbels. The alter-is spirit of scientology is like nazism or bolchevism.
Scientology policies have declined as a robotism, pure stupidity and evil.
To attack scientology not knowing those basic differences, putting Hubbard (even with his many flaws) at the same level than a Miscavige which is not even (for me ! ) a human being but an evil machine.
This type of person in a situation where it would be autorized, could arrest and emprisonned anyone without a regret if they consider it “in policy”. Disconnection is like eradicating the dissatisfied. It’s not scientology it is the exact opposition.
For whatever reason(s) I noticed as a staff member that studying L. Wrong in the course room was an EXTREMELY unpopular activity for the church ‘parishioners’. It ranked right below getting ones wisdom teeth pulled, WITHOUT anesthetic.
As this was during a period when L. Wrong ran the show and the training staff were as good as they ever got in scamology, you decide why that was…
Old Surfer Dude says
Mike, when I was on staff at the Honolulu mission, I did a course. They wanted me to write up a Success Story. I told them the course was OK, but, nothing earth shaking. Boy, were they pissed! They said, “You write a success or do the course all over again. So I wrote a half hearted success story.
You wrote a ‘success story’ even if you’d hated every minute of the damn course, it just wasn’t worth the hassle not to.
OSD, you were resistant to brain washing. Surprised they let you stay around. Per Hubbtard you were NCG/ major criminal. Like Hisself.
I was a ‘good’ Scientology student for some 40 years. I’ve by now lost most of what if anything I learned.
In order to learn something in life the student should desire the specific education. LRH touched on ‘In order to learn – the student needs to know he doesn’t know’. Well how does a person know they don’t know? Well gee wiz. Have a question – find out the answer. That is when education is fun fun fun 🙂
I only now and then ran across anything I ‘wanted’ to learn. It was mostly done for an entirely different purpose.
Set up to fail from the beginning.
I will also add that the helpful ‘tech’ of study, I already knew. If one WANTS to learn they figure it out. I have spent the last few months studying ‘cognitive dissonance’ and ‘undue- influence’. Yes, I look up words. And then I put the psychology terms in my own words. Then comes bunches of practical which is sometimes painful but a relief when I get the understanding and realign my thinking and thus my life.
Harry Gray says
What are people seeking in life when they enter Scientology? Do they seek what is the meaning of life, why is there life on earth, why did my level of being stop growing and at what point in my life? There are many ways other than Scientology. LRH found a book, took a paragraph from it and founded his whole mis-concept of Scientology on it. A seeker is a seeker, a non-seeker is a non-seeker. One can be in this life but not of it. One is awake in life, the other is asleep and is hypnotized by life. The other can be in life but of it. One feeds nature, the other feeds the sun. Scientology does not work. People at the highest level in Scientology such as the Miscaviges and Tom Cruise should be great beings, totally conscious. Instead, they are involved like thieves in the night and Cruise has “hippy fits”, tantrums, and unable to find a good wife and happiness in life. Cruise can own castles and make great films but the only thing that matters is your level of being. We are beings of divine transmission to help the earth, moon and sun grow. We can grow to.
Old Surfer Dude says
Harry, I was born with an overwhelming stuttering problem. They, of course said, “We can handle that!” They never addressed it in auditing.
Harry Gray says
Try singing when you speak. Then you will be using the other side of the brain. You might find it interesting. Then you can gradually sing less when you speak to find an acceptable level. Better than stuttering. My father had a stroke and could not speak beyond a couple of words. But he could sign Happy Birthday. True story.
I’m a stutterer and my stuttering was very severe from childhood (as was my mother’s), so my parents sent me to the best speech therapist available in D.C. during the late 50s/early 60’s to no avail. In the 70’s while living in Hollywood, one morning I fortuitously channel-surfed to a Merv Griffin daytime talk show segment with Mel Tillus and the late Joseph & Vivian Sheehan, heads of the UCLA Speech Therapy Department, who discussed their unique stuttering therapy with Mel & Merv.
Fascinated, I reached Vivian via UCLA and she accepted me for participation in their innovative weekly therapy group at UCLA. As a child, my mother had told me, “Only a stutterer knows how another stutterer feels.” Joseph Sheehan was a stutterer himself, and as a Speech Psychologist, he developed a therapeutic modality based on “Learn to be a better stutterer” rather than the commonly accepted goal
of speech fluency.
Their therapy changed my life – it’s by-product of “earned fluency” through dilgently applying the tools given in it transformed my previous hell of deep shame, guilt, and fear when trying to speak into one of passion and joy for communicating. I learned to “own” my stuttering as part of myself, and if I continue applying the tools I learned, can continue to “earn” fluency.
The ebook of their therapy, “Easy Stuttering,” is available, and many soeech therapists use the Sheehan Method, as well. Huell Howser did a California Gold episode, visiting Vivian’s stuttering clinic group at St. Joseoh’s Hospital in Santa Monica.
Joseph passed on in 1988 and I became close to Vivian, seeing her regularly unil her passing in 2008. Hers is a most fitting tribute: “Vivian Sheehan loved her stutterers.” Indeed, that was my profound experience.
You can learn more here:
Typo correction :”Mel Tillis”
Gus Cox says
Fuck, that asshole Miscavige took breaks way?? What the fuck??? Jeezus, it was bad enough going from 7-10pm with the break at 8:30, but without a break it would be interminable.
At CC, the stampede down the stairs from the course room to the snack bar at 8:30 was pretty funny. And yeah, it was about the only time to socialize. Everybody would get a snack and puff a ciggy and chit-chat.
Anyway, if I ever thought of going back, I sure as bloody hell won’t now! Aside from having to pay to do those damned courses for the *third* time, no fucking break? Fuck that!
When I was a kid I had to go on course on the weekends, from 9am – 6pm. Absolutely fucking miserable. School all week then reading effing Fatman books and listening to tapes all weekend. I ended up with a big vocabulary for a 10-year-old, but it wasn’t worth it.
Funny, I remember some of my first “5-Dollar Words” were nomenclature, aperture, and concatenation. And patter. Oh, and ambulant (from the upper indoc TRs – “student and coach ambulant”). I’d rather have studied something useful though, like physics.
Loved this article. Had me in shrieks!
“A feeling of confusion or “reelingness,” had nothing to do with the muddled logic or horrific prose a student had been reading…” – Haha! Touche!
” The Fuckin CSW” – Lol!
These used to slay me. I’m already devoting every spare minute to scn, how the hell can I find even more time now to make up a half a day or night! This thought alone used to send me “into reelingness”!
God, looking back, what a lot of bullshit we swallowd! I’m so relieved I’m not into thrashing myself for being gullible and stupid.
Old Surfer Dude says
Good for you, Tidalwave! Glad you’re out. You got your old life back! You can do whatever you want to do!
Barbet, I had this long post and lost it. I read all that have posted since I checked last, decided its been pretty well covered. I was going to say teamwork, but a constant fear of reprisal might cancel that out.
And teamwork again. Has COS taught by example, respect for their elderly, respect for personal choices, the sanctity of life.. at any stage? They fed them slop, worked them half to death, then there was that sleep deprivationness.
Shame about sex, and a total disregard for females in the “Church”.
Has COS taught by example how to work within a diverse, interfaith community to achieve common goals? Are they teaching responsibility by honoring prior commitments, promises?
Does COS teach, through actions, dignity, respect for privacy?
These descriptions are invaluable for never-ins to understand what scientologists actually are doing all day long in the org, thank you. There’s also the endless discussion and evaluation of the “tech” and there are the accounts of abuses, stress and drama, all of which are important too, but actual descriptions of scientological procedures are much too rare on ex scientology sites, probably because it is all so self-explanatory and obvious for ex scientologists. Dear exes, please remember that it is not quite the same for the countless lurkers, and throw in a practical description from time to time. It can’t be bad to also occasionally explain often used abbreviations, even though there are glossaries. 😉
Nattering Never-Ins says
I found it useful to study the MANY articles in the Underground Bunker that go through the steps and materials of Scientology with Claire Headley, et al.
The repetitive dulling nature of both the course-work and the climbing the ladder of success was made pretty obvious.
It always looks like a ladder to me, not a bridge.
A ladder to nowhere!
Before I read those articles I had seen a couple hundred hours of ex-scientologist videos and scenes of activism … and had already found ways I was relating my life experiences to theirs.
I find that I live in a glass house, and so I don’t throw stones.
I am just fascinated because … but for circumstances it could have been me … and in other circumstances, it has been me!
Anyone can find themselves hypnotically swayed from their own intents by a predatory mind. ‘Come in to my parlor, said the spider to the fly!’ my Grandmother would caution!
Going forward, we could teach the kids how to just deal with reality in a new way … now that we have actual science ‘n stuff. 🙂
Tesseract, et al – yes! Thank you. To date I’ve read nearly every Scientology book, watch like 3 movies/TV shows and realize the oppressive and disgusting lifestyle for non-celebrity ppl in their the church. I could never understand what ppl did all day in the church that they were so busy all the time cuz it’s not helping other non-CoS ppl.
I’ve finished Jenna Miscavage book & have a much better understanding now…days are primarily made up of compiling stats of what you did this day, this hour…how pointless. No pun intended…
Never been in – but would you all say that in general the CoS did create dedicated, diligent, conscious, drug free, doesn’t support pre-marital sex, responsible individuals? However misguided the method – to achieve a lofty goal…didn’t the CoS generate & foster those types of ppl? That’s not so bad…
The entity created suppressed, repressed, scared little confused beings with permanent smiles on their faces
L Yash (Balletlady) says
It also taught former members to Stay The HELL AWAY from COS and wo warn others to do the same.
Leah talks about the fact that she was amazed that so many people did drugs then re did the purif again and again on Joe Rogan’s podcast. Divorce is rampant. Sex would be preferred but you can get kicked out so people marry just so they can have sex. Not a good reason to marry or not have premarital sex. I have never ever been in a group so preoccupied with sex as when I was in scientology.
Diligent? Only enforced zealotry. Sea Org members work hard at nothing all day long. They have busy work that keeps them up all night but they are spinning their wheels. They are very dedicated to protecting lies so there is that dedication. Responsible? How responsible is it to bankrupt yourself for the sake of anything? Seientology frowns on higher education, savings accounts, 401k, and encourages you to rack up as much debt as you possibly can.
Then there is the whole snitch culture where you are required to report every real or imagined transgression committed by your friends, family members, even parents or “sacrifice your spiritual future”. You are trained in scientology to look for things to use against others, including searching their confessional folders if they commit the “ultimate sin” of leaving and trumpet all the real or imagined bad that you know if others are o the world.
Do you really believe scientology fosters the type of people you described above? If so, you’ve sure got a lot to learn. I was trained to lie from day one in scientology. It took a lot of deprogramming to learn how to act like an ethical responsible dedicated human being AFTER I left that group.
I Yawnalot says
My goodness Valerie… didn’t you sum up Scientology rather neatly but at the same time create a nausea not easy to deal with. Well said! It’s not easy coming to terms with attitudes that try to find something, anything good in a group activity like organised crime, opps, I meant to say Scientology.
Old Surfer Dude says
No, no! You had it right the first time!
No Barbet they didn’t. Take a look at those in (giving up their families and more for the promise that never has taken place in 67 years) and those on their way out struggling to once again think for themselves.
After 43 years, I am frickin having to learn psychology to figure out WTF happened to my own thinking and sanity. Of course I’m wiser for the education over the last 4 years but I have lost many friends, a husband and two children. Others have lost far more. Yup, I’d say it’s pretty bad.
My experience, 1967-1982, was that we increased consciousness but none of the other things you mentioned. I would place most of us at social-misfits and dangerous to polite society. Some were ‘dedicated’ and became true followers to Ron’s every word. Perhaps 10 or so people I knew from those days are still in.
As an experiment in ‘social betterment’ Scientology would get an “F” in my book.
Old Surfer Dude says
‘F’ to the nth degree.
yep, Hubbard did create those things, there is but one problem, since you are a never been in, Hubbard said we was all supposed to go Clear and then OT. You’ll have to look that up, those terms of Clear and OT.
Barbet, I’ve been waiting to see what people with more experience would have to say. My limited experience was of people with a typical range of attitudes and behaviors of the time.
Many of the accounts that I’ve read from the 60s and 70s describe a culture in Scientology that was often pretty sexually libertine, perhaps particularly in California. That apparently wasn’t everywhere, but there might have been less organizational concern about it back then; ultimately Scientology seems to have become pretty repressive, but in a warped way that may for instance be more about control than any sort of morality. Others have already written about what a mixed bag it all is, and generally nothing laudable.
As of this writing, no one has yet added that the organization and culture of Scientology countenanced some severe sexual abuses, protected perpetrators and blamed victims. And besides all the divorce that seems to go on as a matter of course, you might have read elsewhere that Scientology sometimes try to split even married couples up when it suits the organization, including for financial reasons such as getting access to income and assets when one spouse objects (financial responsibility and prudence, such as saving money and avoiding debt, are a “traditional values” that they completely reject – and remember that there is no real concept of charity, either).
We were pretty libertine in the NY Org in the late 60s. It was great fun. And, btw, NYO had been declared in Power, Day and Foundation by none other than Ron, himself. So lots of sexuality, happy staff and high stats seemed to go along very well. Ethics were light, as I recall. And the course rooms were jammed, too.
Barbet -I am also a ‘never-in’. However, I have spent the last six months studying scientology and even taking online CoS courses to better understand the “tech” and their organization.
From my never-in view, I see one major flaw in your logic. The word “create” in the first sentence. The person within Scientology who you describe as “dedicated, diligent, conscious, etc.” came by those attributes through forced learning, intimidation, fear, financial ruin. Zombie-like creations of the church.
In my mind, I would much rather see a person who lives an existence whereby he or she CHOOSES to be a dedicated, diligent, conscious and loving individual.
OhioBuckeye and Barbet – I find it interesting (in a good way) that you find the cosmology of LRH/scn interesting enough to do a study of it. Scn cross references a lot of subjects and I’ve studied a few, at least to an overview, so I can relate to your interest. 🙂
While we’re on the subject of study and word clearing, here’s a good one, I think.
cosmology – the branch of philosophy dealing with the origin and general structure of the universe, with its parts, elements and laws, and especially with such of its characteristics as space, time, causality, and freedom.
The beginning levels of scn seemed to be a logical and rational way to gain self awareness and enhance abilities. The mysterious and intriguing lure of the upper levels remained hidden until the internet came along.
Thank you Richard, for your comments.
I have been looking up words in the dictionary since the third grade…just as the nuns taught us to do. To those wonderful teachers, I am forever grateful. On my hall table still today is the Webster’s New Twentieth Century Dictionary (Unabridged). Five inches thick.
Regardless of the cosmology of scientology, the learning “tech” and mind exercises “discovered” by LRH were nothing new. He just found new packaging; a religion. The CoS was and remains an abusive and manipulative organization. No ‘greater good’ justifies the hurt and torment the CoS has visited on its members. None.
Permit me a personal story: In the mid sixties, I would have been a ripe candidate for CoS or some other cult. I felt alone, unwanted and confused. Being raised Catholic and finding myself pregnant and unmarried, I needed all the support from my belief system that I could get. However, when the priest came to “help” after being called by my Mom, his advice was to have my baby and give it up for adoption, rather than marry the father, who was non-Catholic. I didn’t follow that advice and just celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary. Our son and his wife have given us two beautiful grandchildren. So, which was the greater good…stay a Catholic in good standing or marry the father of my baby, who I loved deeply?
I have rambled on, to be sure. But my story, in part, is why I have joined other ‘never-ins’ to raise awareness of this terrible organization. No greater good, no matter how it is presented, is worth giving up your free will, free thought and free mind. Free Will is just one of God’s many gifts.
OhioBuckeye – “I didn’t follow that advice and just celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary.” Great!! That made me smile and laugh at the same time. Know-it-all priests, gurus and cult leaders! – lol Thanks for sharing!
Back in the “Make love not war” era of scn sex was free and easy. Other “religions” would have looked at us as promiscuous.
Old Surfer Dude says
I was promiscuous when I was in. And I had a lot of fun with that! Those were probably the best times I had in the cult.
Promiscuous behavior by surfer dudes would be expected. Your noodle is floating.
I think you are right in some ways, and I also think that beneath these benefits lie more harm than the good.
Many people I know would tell you that they stopped doing drugs or drinking after ‘getting into’ scn. They became more focused on helping others, they worked to improve conditions, found a greater love for mankind, and so on.
Since you can be barred from the bridge if you do criminal things, often times you find that people are more honest on their taxes and more law abiding than they may have been otherwise. If you know that it will come up in a sec check and may bar you from OT levels, or even just cost you a bundle in sec checks, you tend to try to walk the line. (ask anyone on OT VII, having to report in every 6 months to stay on the level)
I was an ethics officer and worked with many people on handling their past criminal activities, they had to take steps to be responsible for them. (partially to protect the church)
Also, you get the whole starry eyed do-gooder persona that gets taken on. Being, “RESPONSIBLE” and “upstat” and working hard for the cause and setting a good example and so on can really be a thing. Young people can grab onto this and it may keep them from drugs. the little kids you see in flyers are being fed these ideas, how grown up they are and lauded for doing children’s courses.
Scios do consider themselves to be very ethical.
I was always aware of how much the ethics policies policed behavior and if nothing else, forced people to be more rule following and law abiding than they would be inclined otherwise.
So on the surface, yep. You get a lot of folks no longer being druggies or doing petty crime. But when you pull the cover off you find all the things Mike and his blog have revealed.
Scios don’t even know that they are taught to lie, deceive, and attack, all in the name of “saving the planet”. Through auditing, training, staff, and the culture of scn they are taught arrogance, aloofness, them vs us, and a ruthless black-white view of the world. No one knows anything at all except Ron and Scientologists. Nothing is true, right, or valuable except the tech and clearing the planet.
Everyone and everything else is enemy. Bowling, horse-racing, wandering off a path to look at pretty rocks, all activities not promoting scn is “other fish to fry”.
Zombie Robots who hate everyone but think they are the most ethical beings on the planet saving everyone. They don’t even KNOW they hate.
(I’m sick of hearing how doctors, politicians, psychologists, ‘authorities’, police, etc are all evil and harmful and worthy of only scorn)
oh, yeah, and of course all manner of crimes are hidden and ‘cared for internally’ because “wog justice is no justice’. In other words, the world is wrong and knows nothing about creating ethical beings and its justice is harmful.
Wow. Great response. Thank you
Secret, et al- thank you. I’ve read about the other stuff & it’s horrid, I agree. It seems at earlier times (pre-1980) CoS was really engaging ppl, really had something to offer, but later no so much…until today where it’s horrible. Then again, from what I read, there were “pockets” of coolness & fun – like at certain Missions…but then personnel were rotated – and then the cool places also died. there is no mission or org that’s cool now.
I kind of referred to it above, but in the good old days most everyone still believed the promises of Clear and OT would come true. Dreamers will dream. Plus, nobody wanted to shave their heads and become monks or nuns to attain such powers. (joke)
Also, sitting on my butt answering auditing questions was fun and easy. Buddhists often say it’s hard work. Where’s the door? (another joke)
One of the most frustrating parts was having to try to make sense of material that was intrinsically nonsensical.
Hubbard made a big thing about being one of the first nuclear physicists and quite often talked about physics in his texts and tapes, making mistakes that would have been an embarrassment to a tenth grade student.
Sometimes these statements were hilariously. In the original version of “All About Radiation”, he stated that one could prevent radiation poisoning by holding a newspaper between him and the radiation source.. This section was removed in later versions, but can still be found in the Tech Volumes.
Hubbard’s utterings on history were not much better.
Sometimes clearing words did help me in comprehension and unblock study, and certainly improved my vocabulary..
But sometimes, the incomprehension was caused by the fact that the original materials being studied were just plain wrong in the first place, and word clearing nonsense cannot make any sense of it.
Gus Cox says
What’s funny is that Scientology thinks they discovered looking up words – to the point where they license the study “tech” via Applied Scholastics. The Delphi schools for example pay what I imagine is a sizable tribute to those leeches every year for the right to look up words. Even though Delphian wrote the damned curriculum!
My public elementary school had dictionaries and taught us how to use them. The people who put men on the moon all managed to learn physics somehow without the Fatman’s stupid “tech.” But no, ask any clam who invented looking up words and they’ll say L. Ron Hubbard. It’s ridiculous.
Gus, that brings back my father’s (himself a writer) response when I asked, “what does X mean?” LOOK IT UP! There were always numerous dictionaries and at least two thesauri available in the house. “How do you spell it?” FIGURE IT OUT! LOL And that went for all six of the children! To this day, I keep a huge dictionary in the office. (Internet based dictionaries tend to be very skimpy.)
In his autobiography, Malcolm X stated that he educated himself in prison by reading the dictionary.
Yes, that’s right! I read that auto-bio of him, as told to Alex Haley. He said he opened the dictionary one day and started with “aardvark”. Quite a guy, that Malcolm X. Towards the end he had an epiphany (cognition, realization, whatever) about how he didn’t have to hate white people anymore, how that wasn’t the solution at all for which he’d been searching…he talked about it, separated himself from the other “Black Muslims” as they were called then, who were into hating…then they murdered him in cold blood. But I digress.
Nicholas Edward Werner-Matavka says
I did use a dictionary occasionally in my youth, usually a dinky vest pocket dictionary, but while convalescing from a very bad injury, I was given a folder by a lawyer friend (not a Scnist) containing a graffitied copy of LRH’s Student Hat Course. It was the original, not the Basic Study Manual, and was pretty specific to learning how to audit, but my friend said it applied to more or less anything and he got a pretty big boost out of it.
So I tried it. I found a friend with whom to twin and we worked through it in a couple of weeks. The Student Hat worked for me. I’ve become a compulsive dictionary user and clay modeller. I more or less have a tab open in my browser permanently for Johnson’s Dictionary, one for the Oxford, and one for Roget’s.
I “got into” Hubbard more seriously after watching “Stranger Than Fiction” in class, learning that it was based on LRH’s “Typewriter in the Sky”, then reading it. I can think for myself and, knowing that Scientology to-day is a nasty cult, I stay away from it. But this being true didn’t turn me off Hubbard as a writer or even as the author of dianetics (which he spelled with a lowercase d and applied the usual English suffixes, as in dianetically or non-dianetic—interesting, as that and other things he said lead me to believe he intended to put it into the public domain).
A lot of Hubbard’s writings in their original form, as I believe he intended them to be read, are available for free download on the Internet. I do not buy any book originating from Bridge Publications, because I don’t want a penny going into that *ahem* Miscarriage person’s pocket. He’s holding his wife hostage (out-2D), and he’s /c/overtly hostile (apparently the overtness gets worse the nearer one draws to him) to the Kafkaesque cloud of shell organisations he leads (out-3D) and to mankind in general (out-4D). He’s thrown MEST-y things around with a particular love of chairs (out-6D). By all accounts, he refuses to get audited or any other form of abreactive therapy(!) Hubbard had an auditor and saw him often, so why doesn’t Miscavige practice what Hubbard preached?
Anyway, I practice self-analysis as well and get occasional light audits from a few people I trust. I view dianetics more or less as a form of psychotherapy; just like there is Freudian psycho-analysis and Jungian analytic psychology, there’s also Hubbardian dianetic clearing and Gerbodeian traumatic incident reduction. It’s worked for me. The way out really does seem to be the way through. As for Hubbardian self-analysis, even though my long-term memory was always pretty good, practicing the exercises improved it. I can’t be fabricating it all, because I’ve asked friends and others a few questions about the events and most of what I’ve remembered with the aid of self-analysis tricks I’ve had corroborated.
Hubbard is a good fiction and self-help (and help-others, because you can’t audit yourself!) author. Just don’t drink the Flavor-Aid.
Nicholas Edward Werner-Matavka says
Alpha radiation? Yes indeedy! A newspaper would do it. Beta radiation? Sure, if you folded it over once or twice. Gamma radiation? Hell no. Since alpha radiation does cause quite a lot of damage, radiation burns and skin cancer particularly, you CAN protect yourself to a degree from stuff like enriched uranium just by wearing clothes or holding it in a newspaper (you’ll see scientists handling the stuff wearing gloves and not much else). Nuclear explosions? Not so much.
As usual Terra your essays hit home.
My normal course schedule was Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 6pm. Took a train to the org. If the train had some issue that caused me to get to course a few minutes late, it was off to ethics; had to find out what was going on in my life ( what overts I had committed) that caused me to get on a train that had an issue.
Break times were good and bad. Good for meeting women. Bad because it was prime time for registrars to find me : ” I ‘need ‘to see you at lunch ( or after course)” was their standard patter.
Hated the long hours. Taking the train to and from made for a long day. Couldn’t really do much Saturday night because of having to get up early to be on course Sunday.
One time while on the Life Orientation Course, the org “needed” my twin and I to finish by 2pm the following Thursday. . I had a vacation week from my job that I used to go on course “full-time” (9 am to 10pm. M -F). I got a commendation chit for “making it go right. ” I left about a year later.
Felt very weird after course was over each night having to stand up, look at photo of Hubbard on the wall and shout, “Hip,Hip,Hooray ” 3 times, while clapping hands afterwards.
The routing form was a very controlling device. Each step had to be done and signed off by the proper “terminal” before you could complete the course. The last step being sitting down with the registrar and signing up for your next course. And the cycle began again. Over and over again.
Oh how I love the weekends now!
Old Surfer Dude says
I’ll bet it feels pretty damn good to be out, Carl. When I left, I immediately went surfing at my favorite spot in Waikiki! Life never tasted so good!
Thank you, Terra for this excellent blog topic and the reminder of the CSW–and to Carl for bringing up the “routing forms.” How cult-like is that? Control, control, control… The only thing worse for me was doing the “certainty” drills and talking to a wall for three hours or more a day. And to think I actually paid thousands of dollars to torture myself like that.
Out of respect for this blog and the differing views of the people here, I refrain from making any sort of political statement so please don’t take what I have to say as having any political meaning. It’s meant in the context of my “wins” from the upper indoc TR’s course, which are still with me to this day..
Today, I was watching TV from here in the U.S. and saw President Trump in Israel…With “Tone-40 intention,” from my living room, I gave him these commands:
“Look at that wall.
Walk over to that wall.
Touch that wall.
He executed each one flawlessly. Now do you see the impact “Silent-ology” is having around the world?
Hip, hip, hurrah!!!
(I always thought it was creepy that all the students would have to look at a picture of Elron in the course room and having to shout that out).
I should have added that the entire ceremony at the West Wall in Jerusalem was postulated wholly by Silentology–on course and on source…
Study tech defined: A Scientology indoctrination technique; a euphemism for mind control.
Yes, Machiavelli, and a technique that effectively makes one more stupid and robotic.
Nicholas Edward Werner-Matavka says
Hasn’t had that effect on me. Then again, I studied Study Tech with a non-Scientologist twin for non-Scientology (law) purposes. It helped me to understand what I was reading. It did NOT cut down on my laziness. It’s instilled in me the habit of being a compulsive dictionary user and modeller. I’d always been taught at school to first try deriving the meaning of the word from its etymology (mastoid, say, from Greek mastos, breast, oideia, similarity to), then to guess from context, and then a dictionary at last resort. Bad idea, Hubbard says. I think he’s right; I’ve used “evince” many times inappropriately to mean to bring out or develop something intangible from someone (to evince* love from his mother, for instance)
The study course I did almost forty years ago was called, I believe, the “Superliterate Course”. (from memory) There were six reel to reel tapes with elron explaining the study tech. Each tape had a corresponding booklet listing each word from a to z as it first appeared in the tape. Each and every word was looked up in the dictionary. This procedure repeated on the following tapes, omitting words previously looked up.
Long story short, to this day a misunderstood word or symbol leaps off the page at me as if it were highlighted. That’s not to say I might think I have a correct definition for a word which is incorrect. I certainly don’t bother looking up every misunderstood word in everything I’m reading. I just identify it as a misunderstood which allows me to continue reading without going blank. (what did I just read)
Scn needed to make a lot of auditors out of people with average to above average intelligence. Education at that time and probably still is inadequate to allow many people to absorb and duplicate (apply) a relatively technical subject. The study tech as presented back then was adequate for that purpose. There was also and abbreviated version for people who didn’t want to go into that much detail. I have no idea of how much it changed over the years other than terra’s description of the numerous stupidities which were added.
Too steep a gradient and absence of mass are also valid descriptions and manifestations in the subject of study.
Richard: “The study course I did almost forty years ago was called, I believe, the ‘Superliterate Course’…”
I believe that was the Primary Rundown course – and superliteracy was the end result.
The Key to Life Course came out later and gave a similar gain. It included a thorough hatting on grammar and the clearing of small common words – the ones that are commonly misunderstood.
Hi marildi – You got me thinkin’ agin’ on Al’s blog. lol
Hi, Richard. That’s good. It’s always fun when you start thinkin’ 😉
I loved Key To Life. LOC also; loved it. Both courses helped me a lot and were right up my alley, so to speak. I mostly liked all my Scn courses and got gains from all of them except for, in the end, the Basics, which I considered a waste of time. Plus we had no choice, we had to buy them and do the courses. Such a waste of time and energy, not to mention money. Even before I started reading Marty’s blog I resented doing them, considered that doing them was out-tech, and got no gains. But my other courses before that, yeah, I liked them and I’m glad I did them.
Aqua, clay demos were fun… Now, I think back and wonder if the idea for Saturday Night Live’s skits with Mr. Bill originated from a $cn course-room somewhere….
Poor Mr. Bill was totally “PTS…”
Any guesses on the identity of the clay rep, “Mr. Sluggo?”
Here’s a good chuckle, “Mr. Bill Goes Tubing”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drShIDEX74Q
Old Surfer Dude says
You are correct,Marildi. It was indeed called the Superliterate Course. And how do you become superliterate? By word clearing! It was offered to me but I declined. Just like I declared to attest to Clear…
Gus Cox says
Yep, the Primary Rundown. You became a “Fast-Flow” student and thereafter didn’t have to do star-rate checkouts (except on the Class VIII course). Also, Fast-Flow was awarded when one did the Student Hat course followed by Method 1 word clearing.
Similar experience. My twin and I co-audited the first Word Clearing course and probably drove the C/S crazy. The course supervisor ignored us. We ran down word roots and origins, and exhausted 2 university libraries before working our way earlier to words, and earlier to visual projections, to simply throwing the concept into the other’s universe. Duplication at that level was spooky, even to ourselves.
Sounds fantastic, Richard, I always loved looking up the root meanings of words. Etymology has always been interesting to me and sort of a hobby of mine. But then, I’m a little strange 🙂
Another ex so says
Try this on for size:
1) working in a very hot kitchen in the summer in los Angeles for 12 hours a day
2) getting a day of every 2 weeks if your lucky
3) feeding 300 people 3 meals a day with you and one other cook
4)have a diet consisting of coffee, cigarettes, white bread, beans, beef stew (hold the beef), corn flakes and rice.
5) wash pots after yoir done cooking for 800-1000 people every day. Oh and clean the kitchen
6) get to work at 7am and leave at 10pm
7) practice music with your band from.1030-1130 pm because its the only joy and happiness you can expect in the whole miserable day.
Now do that every day and then sit down to do TR zero without sleeping.
Or read some esoteric, non sensical book (science of survival or history of man im looking right at you) without yawning.
Oh and i forgot to mention tou do this because your a confused teenager that got into Scientology because your first girlfriend broke up with you and got into the sea org because you couldn’t afford scientology.
Oh yeah there was no such thing as the internet.
Hey LRH go fuck yourself.
Oh wow! I feel for what you went thru. How many years did you put up with that nonsense before you walked out?
Another ex so says
7 years as a confused teen/young adult.
All good. Im older wiser and better for it.
Thanks for asking.
Wow. So happy you’re out of that hell.
Gus Cox says
Yeah, fuck that shit! After reading that, hell, *I’m* happy you’re out too! Enjoy your weekend 😀
In the SHSBC at ASHO Day we had full timers. All. Day. Long. That course was months long even full time. Interestingly enough, when you hit “the wall of tapes” each tape was approximately an hour, giving students an enforced break. Students actually looked forward to it. We also spent a lot of time rewinding and re listening to certain sections of the tape trying to understand what the “f” the old man was saying. Sometimes we laughed. Oh my! I was a bad supervisor. I laughed with my students.
FWIW my least favorite phrase was ” what do your materials state?” I always found an alternative way of saying that or sometimes even helped the students figure things out when no one was watching. What a rebel.
Just Hummin' Along says
Hello, I’m a rookie here, just trying to learn as much as I can about Scientology. It isn’t a big presence where live so I really know very little. I was going to give the whole Aftermath series a miss, really didn’t want to watch some millionaire Hollywood actor whine about something I thought they’d gotten themselves into and now regretted, sounded too much like sour grapes. But that changed when I saw a promo for the show and heard Leah’s forlorn statement “I didn’t want to find out everything I’ve believed my whole life was a lie”. I wondered what it was I didn’t understand, so I watched. The first story about Amy Scobee and her beautiful mother got me hooked, “and yes ma’am you can say BASTARDS and in all upper case if you like!” I’ve watched everything Leah & Mike have done and am so sorry I’ve been so dismissive in the face of all the suffering that has gone on. Leah’s journey and Mike’s wonderful commentary has been a blessing but so have all of you who tell you’re personal stories. It’s one thing to get a lecture or read an essay but it is another to hear first hand experiences. Please don’t think it’s all been a waste, it would be if you stayed silent but giving your pain a voice helps those like me learn and understand just what is going on and to care about what is going on. Bless you all and go raise a tall one you more than deserve it.
Just Hummin: I was in. I have watched Aftermath from that viewpoint. I also wasn’t going to watch. I thought it would be fluff. I was shocked when the first episode had me bawling like a baby. Your comment made me cry as well. Thanks for caring.
The series opens eyes for those who were never in and rips open wounds for those who were there. This however is a necessary start to the healing process for those of us who have pretended so long we were not damaged. I hope some day the suffering ends for those still in. I miss my friends.
L Yash (Balletlady) says
I asked a few former members if they would expound upon their journey through Scientology and several complied with my request. THAT is what really got my ire up….to hear how these lovely people were taken advantage of as you say….they believe all that they were spoon fed by Scientology”…..My heart aches for all of them
All thought finally waking up, stop drinking the “Kool Aid” did they come to their senses and leave, some more of less quietly….some “blowing”…..I highly APPROVE BOTH.
ANY WAY you can get OUT of Scientology is a GOOD WAY.
Nicholas Edward Werner-Matavka says
There’s at least one bad way to get out of the Cult: feet-first. Requiescat Lisae McPhersonae in pace.
Thank you Just Hummin. I really appreciated reading your comment today. Sometimes I get so down I wonder if it was worth it and maybe it’s better to drop my past (as much as possible) because after all the exposure of abuses IT still exists and IT’s still abusive. Posts like your matter. Thank you. And Thank You Mike for not giving up the fight.
Actually I liked being on course. The work for meaning, defining words, was fun for me.
Maybe because I was out by 82 things were different.
The downside for my mind, is the undoing of what I did to myself while letting Ron’s world views become my world view on course and listening to tapes.
We let wrong knowledge as well as some truths become indistinguishable from each other.
That’s the essence of the mind fuck from my view.
Our spiritual teacher was a madman. We let some madness into our souls.
Harpoona Frittata says
“Unlike in other institutions of learning, Scientologists aren’t allowed to discuss what they’re studying—neither inside nor outside the course room. How crazy is that! Scientology study groups do not exist.”
This is exactly why there are no $cn scholars within the ranks of current members; everyone who is an expert on this vast subject became one after leaving the cherch.
Setting one all-knowing, all-powerful individual up as the sole authoritative source of knowledge and truth on any given subject is a recipe for disaster and disappointment. But to make one individual the sole Source of all knowledge worth knowing is so far beyond Beyond that you really do have to think of true believer $cilons as all suffering from a form of cult-induced madness, which has many different presenting symptoms that are all anchored by the completely bizarre and easily disproved belief that Elron knew all and knew best.
It’s just as crazy as the N.Koreans believing in the god-like infallibility of their own Dear Leader, as folks starve by the millions and are sent off to forced labor camps for three generations of their families.
Utterly mad bullshit, brought to you by sociopaths who could care less about anything but power, control and personal enrichment.
Depth of Cult Indoctrination Self-assessment Instrument, question #7, “Do you believe whatever you’re told – no matter how bizarre or improbable – without question or disagreement, just so long as you were told it by Elron Flubtard?”
You hit the nail dead center. That is probably the biggest reason why Scientology will probably be a short-term religion. There is no room for theology. No room for wiggling. No room for the faithful to write endless commentary and personal interpretations. All the successful religions, even the very strict ones, have a certain amount of flexibility and armies of theologians endlessly arguing. And they have some allowances for personal interpretation and discussions, which allows the faith to evolve (albeit very slowly for the more entrenched or rigid sects).
The lack of participation and input from the membership is really going to kill Scientology more than anything else. If Scientology had the freedom for members to discuss and reinterpret Hubbard’s writing in a way which more closely matches their lived experiences, rather than just blindly consuming it, they’d probably achieve a level of stability and avoid a crash. Especially if the discussions and re-interpretations visibly had an effect on Scientology as a whole over the years. Religion is a community effort, and the effort will fail if the community doesn’t have any input or feels any sort of ownership. It will also fail if the interpretations of the source material fail to reflect any of the changes in the community.
At any rate, I can thank the study of Scientology (and the great critical commentators here and elsewhere) for making me think about how religions survive or die.
Nicholas Edward Werner-Matavka says
I think the Cult of $cn is a short-term effort, but Hubbard’s ideas on auditing, management, and education at least will probably stand the test of time. I’m speaking strictly from a written perspective and not how people choose to interpret those words or are forced to interpret them.
I Yawnalot says
You know the really hypocritical thing about Hubbard is what I call burning the candle from both ends. I got “into” his early stuff but it struck me decades later the depth of contempt he actually had for the human condition. As his “research” proceeded he coated it in honey and all sorts of validations and policy surrounding the pseudo protection of self-determinism. It’s a sticky mess Scientology, not unlike someone with an unsavory agenda and far too much money with which to implement it. He spun more and more bs around some good observations, nifty ways of asking questions and called it a religion.
His went on to create the very trap he tried very diligently and went to great lengths to explain in the 50s.
One could wonder if he had help, but that’s beside the point now.
Shirley Hubbert says
Just read all this. And it struck me. Ozzy Osbourne is the “Prince of Darkness” and bit the head off a dove at Epic Records…i would probly do the same thing studying Scn for a week. On Course
Infinitely More Trouble says
I could go on and on about Study Tech and supervisors and their course rooms, whether or not Scientology is the subject of study. I attended, graduated from and worked at the Delphian School in Oregon over a period of eight years until 1990. The application of Study Tech in primary and secondary education is a gross disservice to the young minds who are denied the benefits of true understanding and participation in class environments. The only positive thing about Study Tech is all those words you have to look up and use in sentences; it’s fair to say that reading comprehension and vocabulary are big winners. Everything else? Not so much.
You haven’t lived until you’re studying, say, history, and you don’t really understand your history book’s explanation of the causes of some war. Can your supervisor help you? Of course he can: by spot checking the definitions of words in the text; by making you twiddle some paper clips around to represent the actors in the text, or represent them in clay modeling; and by making sure you understand the period just previous to the war.
Could he do anything else to help? For example, TEACHING the subject and, perhaps, DISCUSSING the subject with you and your fellow students? No, absolutely not. All you get in a Study Tech course room are admonitions to read the text and understand the words. And to be quiet. Except for reading comprehension, Study Tech is a disaster. The only reason Hubbard created it was to ensure that no one dared to question his words. It was designed to instill in a student an absolute regard for the inviolability of the source material. And nothing else. This may be fine to become indoctrinated in a cult, but it is a poor way to learn about the world.
I chuckled when Terra Cognita mentioned he was raised on fifty-minute classes and struggled to get through Scientology’s three-hour periods. It was just the opposite for me. When I finally attended community college and was thrown in to that wild schedule of short periods and scurrying from class to class, I hated it and wondered why we couldn’t all just sit and read rather than suffer through the constant yammering from the professors and, worst of all, their constant demands for participation. It freaked me out at first. But then I realized that I was actually learning and understanding subjects better than I ever had before. I had to take so many remedial high school classes that I was very bitter about the thousands of dollars and toil and sweat my parents went through to send me to that terrible Scientology school. But I was able to start really understanding my subjects at last. Especially algebra, which really is best learned with an active teacher explaining the principles and getting the class to participate: the exact opposite of a Scientology course room.
Infinitely, you nailed it. No verbal tech means no arguments or discussions about the bullshit tech. Just reread the material. If you discussed it perhaps someone would make some counter argument to LRH and no way that would be allowed. If you didn’t agree with LRH, it was your misunderstood word. It put SOURCE in complete control without even having to be in the room much less the same continent.
Gus Cox says
Yeah, dude, you nailed one thing: The main problem with scientology schools is there are no TEACHERS.
You wanna drive a person batshit insane, have him try to learn math, especially advanced math, from a fucking book. How about learning to do a liver transplant from a fucking book? Playing a guitar?
Books are vital, but so are TEACHERS!
Harpoona Frittata says
“I’d like to indicate that you have bypassed charge on the topic of study tech and your experiences on course in $cn academies, and now your needle is, umm, hold the fuck on here…your needle is trying to leave the building!”
Terra Cognita says
Holy shit! My needle’s made it out the door and is running down the street. Am in hot pursuit!
Doug Parent says
Hubbard never took into account or acknowledged what can happen after a person has been seated for a few hours in study. Reasons for “Dope off” and “MU phenomena” can be explained in physiological terms. A persons diet level of fitness, sleep all play a part in this. But NOOOOOO…..there always has to be a misunderstood word at the base of it all….bullshit. Scientology indoctrination under duress.
Ms. B. Haven says
I was sent to Flag as an outter org trainee in the early 80s. There was a woman there who was so ‘keyed out’ that she just stayed on course all night. Of course the sups loved this, more student points for them. For the rest of us, the sups expected the same because this woman was so KSW. We badly needed decent food, sleep, etc. The only fitness we got was running to course and dodging regges and recruiters. Bitch.
Gus Cox says
Oh, lord, I so hated those “I’m like soooooooo in-ethics!” types.
Sheila M Huber says
I don’t normally comment on your site, but that was an exceptionally well-written article. 🙂 It also brought to mind one of those bizarre Scientology tales. Speaking of CSWs:
A few years before the banning of children in the Sea Org, I became pregnant and was required to CSW to have my child. That’s right! REQUIRED TO CSW TO HAVE A CHILD. Who did these people think they were?
Imagine… one of the most basic rights a woman can have, a right for which women have suffered for centuries, for which they have used underground railroads through WW2, through America’s civil war, for which American Indians starved and trudged through the Trail of Tears, for which the aborigine walked and somehow survived through steaming, heated outback to keep their children from being taken by the new settlers… this basic human right was subject to someone APPROVING A CSW.
And what would happen if it was disapproved? Had anyone’s CSW to have a child been disapproved before? What happened? These questions went unanswered. Just write it, I was told.
So I did. My CSW didn’t say much, how could it? What information could possibly be relevant to my right to give birth to my child? Besides, I was already pregnant, there was no reversing the process. In my naivete, it never occurred to me that COS would even consider the horrible alternatives: Abortion. Giving a child I wanted so much to bear and raise up for adoption. None of it didn’t made any sense, but I struggled and wrote some sort of CSW anyway. My stats were up, I wrote. I was fully hatted The org’s GI was up and had been on an uptrend for a long time, I wrote, and children are the future of society.
Of course, it ended like every CSW with a line for approval and disapproval and those words we always had to write on CSWs, “THIS IS OKAY.”
My CSW went to the AG-F AOLA, Al Crivello. He approved it.
I thank the heavens, stars, karma, life that I never had to deal with the alternative like the unfortunate women just a few years later.
Sheila, here’s how I’d do it.
Situation: I’m pregnant.
Data: See above
Solution: Have the kid of course!
THIS IS OKAY WITH ME.
Your approval is unnecessary and irrelevant.
Old Surfer Dude says
Machiavelli, just one addition: Your approval is unnecessary and irrelevant. Oh, and fuck you.
Good point. Also, “Try to stop me and expect a long and painful recovery in intensive care.”
Old Surfer Dude says
I would expect no less…
Sheila M Huber says
Sheila M Huber says
Ha ha! 😀
I can think of few worse ways to learn a subject, any subject, than what was described above.
Hubbard was seriously crazy. Maybe not a soulless sociopath like cornCOB Devious Ms. Cabbage, but his thought processes are not like any rational being. He missed his true calling as an old man yelling at clouds and downing cheap booze ouf of a paper bag.
Clearly not clear says
I feel like a twisted sister about this. Let me digress, in school I was told I was “bright but stupid” not in so many words, but that’s what I got from it. So-so grades, a lot of doodling and I didn’t have great expectations of what I’d do as an adult.
The Scientology love bombing worked crazily. I was validated on course a lot. “You’re a good coach,” “You really got the conceptual understanding there,” “excellent demo,” “that clay demo really shows it,” etc. I looked up all these words and I noticed I was speaking better with my larger vocabulary. Soon people assumed I’d been to college. Well Scientology was my college. I believed that my time on course made me smarter.
Well hind sight 20/20 realizes I was smart all along, but self loathing and self uncomplimentary feelings of myself at the time aided the church in looking good. It looked like I went from stupid to smart like a bullet. When I went from smart but self insulting to smart and self important. It’s a huge looking jump. Scientology gives you this false sense of meaning, of doing something important and it yanked me up to a happier place. It took about six months.
When I found the material on course boring, useless and incomprehensible here’s what I’d do, I’d postulate, “I’m going to find one big win, I’ll read some LRH thing and apply it to my life and go home and do it and it’ll make me a better person.” I could have read the bible, or Siddartha and achieved the same goal. But I was 18 and way impressionable. A searcher. This goal of mine caused me to get that win everyday, and apply smart things. The good things he plagiarized not doubt from his betters.
It was my own fourth barrier to study. When this study stuff was shit and I felt awful on course, I’d doggedly dig in and find something good. Stiffle the yawns, wiggle my butt imperceptibly to be able to take the butt pain, demo with my demo kit to wake myself up and like that.
I was aided and abetted by a nice sup. I’d tell her I needed to demo an idea to her. I would and tell her my take on it and she’d let me. While she was my sup I did the best in the church. Then an ex-so who’d had a kid came in to sup the “right” way and it became even more challenging to be “on course.” From then on being on course lacked joy, lacked anything but my dogged determination to get something out of it.
My stubborn nature, my tendency to be loyal and dance with the one who brung me made me stay. I didn’t picture that there were tons of interesting way out there to better myself.
My final memories were course at FLAG. It was excruciating. Shorty thereafter I left.
I am still smart, and now happy and have found wonderful things to inspire me, lift me, inform me and fill my heart with joy upon joy. Feelings I rarely had inside the bubble. The memories can hurt, but after I feel the hurt I feel the freedom and then I feel good.
Thanks for this essay and this opportunity to look at my love/hate relationship with being on course inside the bubble.
Omegapaladin. Thank you. I laugh every time I read this!! CornCOB.
“What do your materials state?” Is just an invitation for each and every ‘student’ to find their ‘tech’. It saves time and the course supervisor doesn’t have to come up with any stock answers. It makes selling the ‘tech’ that much easier.
Terra nails the whole ‘why am I in this stupid classroom’ thing perfectly. I thought the same way in Lutheran catechism classes. Except I could hit on the girls there. In a nice Christian way of course.
This brings back memories, TC. Only the time required is 12 1/2 hrs a week minimum and not 15. On OT VI at Flag we had to be on course from 9 am to 10 pm every day with no break at night. At the Mission where I started, there was a 15 minute break at night and I remember hiding from the registrars during my break so that they wouldn’t continue leaning on me for money. After course the reg came and found me and was mad at me that he couldn’t find me at break and asked where I’d gone. He was mad that now he would have to stay until midnight or after reggig me for money, and he wanted, as did I, to just go home and sleep.
The worst alteration of the tech was done to the Briefing Course, ( the course where they train auditors), It used to be that you’d study each level of the BC and then drill it and audit it as you went along. That way the mass (drilling and auditing) and the significance (reading, listening to tapes) were balanced. Then DM changed the BC so that you did ALL the mountain of tapes first and only at the end of that (which took months, years), only then did you do the practical of auditing. So it was too much significance and no mass. Talk about feeling all packed up!
I’m convinced DM changed the BC that way so as to blow auditors off the course. Then later he became even more overt in his intentions to sabotage the making of auditors — he closed down the BC for good. And he had already closed down the Class VIII course years earlier. Whether DM meant to do it or not, all his actions led to destroying the church.
As I recall, the 12.5 hours is what staff are entitled to. The reference is that staff are entitled to “12 1/2 hours of personal enhancement” per week. It works out 2.5 a day M-F, with weekends having CSP and Libs and things. The enhancement was to be training, hatting, and auditing.
The “entitled” part was also important, operating off the idea that staff are full time on post day and night, this 2.5 was to be included in the daily schedule.
I have never seen a policy that referenced public paid students doing 12.5 hours. The policies on Academy hours, schedules, and the defining of “full time schedule” was very different.
I was staff a long time and held positions in charge of staff training and such like.
The 12.5 hours of study time was what the Mission I got my start in made mandatory for public. Later when at Flag, it was far more than 12.5 hrs that was considered “full time” study. At ASHO Day Specialists Courses, you could do a M-F 9 to noon, OR M-F 1 to 3:30, OR a M-F 3:45 – 6 schedule OR you could go all day both days of the weekend (which would be considered a Foundation Schedule if you did the weekend thing)
When I did take a couple of beginning courses way back when, pre “mission massacre”(1982), I was actually not subjected to any of that stuff. It did seem to start creeping in after the local mission was reclassified as an org, but by then I was distancing myself.
TC, that break you talked about was probably important to the real learning process, as well. I did a quick check and couldn’t immediately find an authoritative reference for researching into the optimal length of a class or study period. However, there seems to be a consensus among experienced professionals, that 35 to 55 minutes is the maximum amount of time to go without either a change or subject, or an actual break. I’d bet that research would show – and I think there is some research that does, I just can’t put my hands on it right now – that students actually learn and retain more when they have 5 to 10 minutes of break per hour.
On the other hand, I’d guess that longer enforced study sessions actually serve to put students in a somewhat trance-like and even suggestible state in which they accept the authority of the materials even if their real grasp of them is weak, and also reinforce habitual compliance – which probably serve the real purpose of indoctrination and the effective organizational goals of Scientology. I’d guess that some of that may have been conscious construct on the part of Hubbard and others, while it also evolved over time to suit the dynamics an organization focused on control; it wouldn’t surprise me if the 15 minute breaks lead to students doing things like thinking for themselves and questioning more, and so were eliminated for purposes of controlling the environment as much as for the expediency of getting in the extra time.
Yes, good observation, Peacemaker. For any ex´s out there who are consciously trying to untwist the study tech mind fuck, I highly recommend a free course online(via Coursera) called LEARNING HOW TO LEARN. It´s an excellent course and it happens to cites TONS of research that validates what you´re saying here.There is another course on the same site entitled MINDSHIFT that builds on the concepts introduced
in Learning How To learn, developed and taught by the same professors. Enjoy!
Bruce Ploetz says
Fun in the Course Room. Well, in the 70s we used to say that if it isn’t fun it isn’t Scientology.
70s Missions – packed full course rooms, you couldn’t hear the other student without shouting. Course started with back rubs or shouting slogans to get in the mood, rocked along the whole time and with wins and shouted slogans at the end. They kept the place open from early morning to late night every day, weekends included.
70s San Francisco Org – I was on “Super Course” which was TRs at 7 AM then auditing and study through til 10 PM or so, every day. Course room was also packed full. No back rubs.
Then 80s EPF course-room in the Sea Org – 5 hours a day and maybe 30 on course. We still went to course even when up all night the night before. Make it go right! Took me 10 days to do the EPF but there were no weird requirements in those days. Three or four courses and you are done. “Welcome to the Sea Org” lectures on reel-to-reel on those old Wollensack tape machines, and a few other courses.
On course in the Sea Org – they are supposed to get 2 1/2 hours every day except when there are all-hands activities on Saturday all day. Sometimes this was skipped altogether, sometimes enforced, sometimes you got out of it if you hadn’t slept (often) sometimes you were forced to try on no sleep, sometimes you could file student folders or clean if you had no sleep. Overall a massive waste of time, but Hubbard said to do it, so…
On course in the RPF – five hours a day. The Flag Order FO3434 that regulates the RPF says “They get 7 hours a night of sleep maximum” but it is usually interpreted that you get enough sleep to study. Often that didn’t happen. I was up the most hours of my whole life in the RPF at Gold, 5 days straight. When I was there in ’83 there were something like 100 others, lots doing interrogation “co-audits” (co-auditing, you twin up with somebody, read the instructions, drill how to do it and then do it on each other). So you get to hear all about somebodies sex life in the seat next to yours while you try to study. Often there were tarantulas visiting us in the Course Room out at Happy Valley. The nice renovations at the Ideal Orgs never got done out there. A fairly large bee hive in the walls of the course-room also created a few exciting moments.
I had the most fun in the Course Room while I was “routing out” of the Sea Org in 2005. I was supposed to be doing the PTS-SP (potential trouble source-suppressive person) Course. This was re-written by Dave Miscavige in the 90s and was supposed to completely turn your life around and make you an effective staff member. Tons of memorization. So all kinds of folks were doing it, over and over.
But by that time I was through with it and just marking time. So I would pretend to go on “word chains” (find a word you don’t understand, look it up and find a word in the definition you don’t understand, look that up and find another word …). Look in the encyclopedia. Read all about the history of the Reformation in Germany, then all about how medieval siege weapons work. You can keep that going for hours without the Supervisor getting suspicious and you can mark down points for all the “words you cleared” so the Supervisor’s statistic is still OK. Read the Bible. There is a Bible in every Scientology course room because there are three verses in the Minister’s Course that you look up in the Bible. Often it is a red-letter King James version that is falling apart, but there is always one there.
So that’s my advice for any “under the radar” types that get stuck in the course room once in a while. Word chains! And get in some Bible study. The trick is, if you get up once in a while to “go to the bathroom” (short nap) or get a book, or look at the big dictionary, or get a volume of the encyclopedia you won’t fall asleep. Hard to fall asleep while standing or walking.
These days we say if it’s fun it can’t be Scientology. Have fun!
Bruce, I was the Super Course Supervisor in the mid-70s at SFO. Being on course as a student-and on post as a supe -was fun back then. I used to spot many suppressed yawns and then tell the student to go back and find their M/Us. The students were very cooperative because they wanted to follow the right study tech. Most were good people hoping for the good results and gains promised with the tech. We were willing to go thru all the discomfort, inconvenience to our lives, and org/reg bullshit because we had hope.
I was laughing at your story because I did the same thing when I was a student at Flag. If I wasn’t ‘studentable’, I routinely went to the Qual library for research on some made up word chain, and often hung out standing by the giant dictionaries in the back of the courseroom to avoid sitting on the uncomfortable chairs. That way I avoided being sent to the even more uncomfortable chairs in Ethics to discover why I wasn’t studentable.
I Yawnalot says
Makes perfect sense to me, hated those types of chairs too!
Being studentable, like being sessionable is another section of Scientology fit for a Terra article. There is nothing in that subject that doesn’t rate as a WTF!
Hi Bruce. I see you were in the RPF at Gold. Do you have any information about Lois’ sister – Geray? She’s been at Gold from about 14 years old onwards. She’s about 50 by now or thereabouts and has been thru about 3 husbands, one of them being Marty Rathbun and another being Rick Cruz or Curzon?. Just curious as I know Lois is always interested in what her sister got up to. She obviously hates us now.
The tipping point for Geray was when she got a ‘correction’ for the Turth Rundown (probably from when she was on the RPF at Happy Valley) from Ray Mitoff in about 1995. She morphed from bending the truth in the usual office politics, to a bald faced liar. Unless something catastrophic happens to the cult and Lois can dry her out in the Southern California sun, she is a Miscavige brown nosing, kool-aid guzzling, true-believing lifer.
So sad. Maybe Lois can send her a Victoria Secrets package… I’ve heard they get thru 🙂
Old Surfer Dude says
Don’t give the dwarf any ideas!
I would contribute to sending Victoria Secret packages to female SO in Hemet. Nothing like great underwear to make a gal forget about everything.
Bruce Ploetz says
Sorry, ClearlyPissedOff, I don’t know a lot about Geray. I do remember her, and that she was married to Rick Cruzen who was the Audio Production Secretary at Gold for a few years, but last time I was there was 13 years ago now. I don’t think we were on the RPF together unless she was already there in 1983.
oh yeah, and what about doing meter drills, hot and heavy and having some fun with it, and being so into it that you didn’t notice the 15 year old newly minted SO supervisor behind you…
you’re having some fun and in between drills you make some remark that is not strictly fully about the drills, the snot-nosed tyrant behind you barks:
“BACK TO COURSE! NO CHATTING ON COURSE!!!”
and you jump out of your skin in startlement.
The orgs I knew had a Day Org course schedule 9-am-6-pm, M-F. Foundation hours were either M-F 7-10:30 pm or you had to do both Saturday and Sunday 9 am – 6 pm.
Most times the line was hard driven – you HAD to commit to a “full time schedule” as above. You couldn’t cherry pick a weekend day and 3 nights a week. You were expected to “make it go right” and arrange your life. ‘HCO PL Students Guide to Acceptable Behavior’ and “Courses Their Ideal Scene” were waved about and ordered word cleared on a regular basis. You wouldn’t want to ask the sup for special concessions which made him guilty of a high crime, would you?
Then when the course room was empty because the line was too hard, we’d relax it and let all kinds of funky schedules in so that we could actually have some students. Remember this?:, “if you’re doing your training on a scholarship (50 percent package discount) you HAD to have a “standard full time schedule” or your scholarship was voided. Yeah, that was enforced on precisely nobody.
With the first GAT they tried to say that if you weren’t full time you had to go into the “special” course room for those on ‘wonky’ schedules, and for this course room you had to have paid full price with NO discounts at all. This would have worked maybe they had staff enough for 2 fully separate Academy Course Rooms. Nope. So those threats quietly died away.
I’ve never heard of an org cancelling breaks. Ours never did. It did mess with 10 or 10:30 as an end point. And you’re totally right about the importance of those breaks as a camaraderie bonding time. (This was also the most fun part of events, the sneaking out to hang out with the other smokers)
I have been known to skip marking my graph at the end of the night. And never ever ever in all my time as a student did I “apply a condition” and do a condition write up on my student points graph. I had enough of that on my post.
Happy Saturday, Guys!
NONE OF US ARE ON COURSE!!!!!!!!!!!
Old Surfer Dude says
I’ll bring a Cabernet as well as a Merlot…
I Yawnalot says
Got any of that funny tobacco?
Old Surfer Dude says
Does a rocking house have a hickory dick!
Gus Cox says
Funny you should mention that – I used to be on course right about now, but instead I’m having a nice home made ribeye steak, a baked potato, and a delicious Central Coast Cab!
Beats the hell outta listening to the Fatman pull bullshit stories out of his ass that’s for sure!
Try a good Cab Franc, if you can find one. A trifle expensive, but well worth the search when you find a good one!
I Yawnalot says
I don’t whether to gleefully LOL with a fixed dedicated glare or shed a tear of frustration with this subject. I’ve called myself “Yawnalot” for this very reason. It got to point in Scientology that’s the way I saw what sitting in a Scientology course room did to you – you yawned or suppressed them all the time. For me, I guess it was more having to redo the same shit over and over again while never having any kind of ‘life’ away from that stuff. Hubbard probably made up “fast flow” so as to stop some sort of catastrophic student blow out or psychotic event.Having to redo the same stuff over and over again for financial gain for the organisation is just plain criminal and very, very cruel!
Like the rest of Scientology its studying system if FUBAR. I’ve studied some pretty intensive stuff in the military, where that shit was truly dangerous. ie get this wrong and you and your buddies are hamburger type incentive, you were made to practice it over & over & over. But it was nothing like or as bad as what Scientology turned out to be like. It just got worse and worse and the only thing that held it together at all in the first place was some sort personal interest. Then the bullshit carrot of your eternity depends on doing this… what a load of crap!
The whole Scientology scene imploded around the method of studying the stuff and the way it was shoved down your throat, not the stuff itself necessarily. You can fuck up any subject by applying Scientology’s pressurized study technology to it. (just for a moment imagine what a hospital would be like employing Scientology’s study procedures to train it’s people?) But Exec’s wouldn’t study it, the regges wouldn’t do it either but pressured everyone else to. The hypocrisy knows no bounds in Scientology or in it’s rank structure. I’m very grateful to be out of it and highly recommend ie insist the system of Scientology, the Orgs and their course-rooms be disbanded forthwith!
You were never on staff were you Terra?
Scientologist: one who can yawn without moving a single face muscle.
Old Surfer Dude says
Whoa! Now that’s some mighty fine brainwashing!
I was a SHSBC supervisor in the ’70s. Not only did I witness this in abundance, I was an expert at it my sleep-deprived self. That comment made me bust out laughing.
I Yawnalot says
You’re my hero!
Sup: What do your materials state?
Me: Irrelevant information I no longer have any use for. Goodbye and good luck.
Aharon Friedman says
As always Terra Cognita is able to put in words what we all think.
Ms. B. Haven says
I feel sick. I did it myself. I just got back from a very pleasant morning walk. Crystal clear skies, cool breezes, lots of birds, and peace and quiet. Then I sat down and read TC’s article. Excellent as usual. Unfortunately for me, in scio-speak, I got thoroughly ‘restimulated’.
That achingly sick feeling in my guts comes from realizing the endless hours that were wasted studying the ‘tek’. Terra was able to describe in agonizing detail the mindless and robotic motions one goes through in order to achieve half the gains available in scientology by training. These days I’d rather be poked in the eye with a sharp stick. Literally.
Not to be a nit picker, but one aspect of being on course was omitted. Sharing wins at the end of course then clapping like trained seals at a picture of the Flounder. My guts are already churning so I figured I might as well just throw that in for good measure.
P.S. My first red flag on course. A fellow student was late for course because her bus was late. The course sup sat her down and told her this was unacceptable. He explained that this was somehow her fault because she ‘pulled it in’. He sent her to ‘ethics’ and I never saw her again. I should have caught a clue and got the hell outta there too but didn’t. At least now I can go for a nice morning walk, breath the fresh air, appreciate the beauty around me and NEVER give the least amount of thought to ‘being on course’. What a fucking waste of time ANYTHING to do with scientology is.
I Yawnalot says
Ms B, love your line, “then clapping like trained seals at a picture of the Flounder…”
I’ve always been a sort of nautical pursuit type of guy and you pickled me pink with that one, LOL, cheers!
I laughed a lot, too. That particular thing really ticked me off, so I learned to “clap” without making any sound. And *that’s* what the big smile on my face was about!!! ROFL
I Yawnalot says
Learnt to clap without making a sound – now that’s quite the “ability gained.” See, not all of Scientology is useless!
“Giving a hand to LRH” at the end of each course period used to make me congeal a bit inside. I always felt self conscious, standing there, facing his picture, clapping. Not that I didn’t feel grateful for the tech – I did. I just didn’t like to have to stand and applaud. It was just so – unnatural, and to me, cult like. I would have preferred to acknowledge him silently when the spirit moved me. In fact, having to stand and applaud actually was a factor that inhibited me from FSMing. I found it embarrassing, somehow.
Ah, the CSW’s if you wanted time off course. Brought back a memory of Phil Embick on the BC. I CSWed to get Xmas or some big holiday off to be with family and he turned it down. I asked why and he said no because his stats always crash at Xmas because of people taking time off and so now he won’t allow it. I argued with him about it and he finally relented a little and said that IF I made up TWICE the time, then he would approve my CSW. I asked to see the reference that you have to make up twice the time. Of course there was no reference. So I challenged him on that too. So finally I took the time off anyway and made up ONLY that much time on course. F. you, Phil! He was removd from the BC later and declared SP. He was given the choice of doing the RPF or routing out and doing A to E as a public. He chose the latter. I saw him years later and he told me he was making a lot of money as a public regging for Narconon. He would talk to families of addicts and reg them to send the addict to Narconon. He made good money because that program is/was expensive. But now that Narconon is in disgrace and lawsuits are plaguing them, centers are being shut down, I wonder how lucrative his regging is now?
Gus Cox says
Huh, that reminded me of someone named Sue Embick, later Sue Yasui. I assume she’s related. She was a similar “tech-y” arsehole. I knew someone who worked at a clam business with her wayyy back – she dragged each of the employees in and went over every hour of their every day with them, when they’d wake up, 30 minutes to shower, 15 minutes to eat, 20 minutes to drive to work, etc. etc. all for the purpose of showing them how they could spend more time on course. She’d subtract all the times from 24 hours and, “See?? Look at all these hours you have left in your day!” She also made them come into her office and *ask* for fucking Post-Its when they needed more – she kept them in the safe. Fucking nutjob.
Cindy ~ Good to know. Last I knew Phil was auditing at Narconon Int. and Theresa was regging. I wonder why he would be selling unless perhaps no PCs or something happened with Theresa’s income or maybe he is just going after the more money. Each Narconon start is a 3,000$ commission. Narconon has their own front groups feeding people in. So he answers the phone lines and talks the desperate family member into believing they have 70% success and that they actually CARE. No amount of commissions would be worth it.
YOu got that right, Cece! Phil became a reg for Narconon for the money. And he was on OT VII with his newfound money and that level takes a lot of cash to stay on it. But I wonder if it is hard to reg for them now that all the bad PR has come out and the lawsuits and deaths at Narconon. A hard sale to make I would imagine. If he knows of the deaths and regges anyway, that would make him very bad to put these poor families and addicts in harm’s way.
Geez Terra. You brought back some horrible memories! Nothing was worse than having to sit in a course room reading LRH bullshit for hours on end.
In the SO, I was in Action, around ’74 on the ship and things were a bit slow with the mission firings, so the Action Aide, Jon Horwich, put me on full time training to do the OEC course. The worst 2 or 3 months I’d spent. I sat from morning until night studying that crap. I’m not sure but I think I did finish the damn course. At least we got our break every 2 hours or so.
Dave Englehart was studying with me and I seem to remember him constantly nodding off while “reading” his materials. At break time we would go up to the forward well deck and try to wake up. Dave’s technique was to hang upside down from the awning rails. I guess he was trying to get blood rushing to his head. It didn’t work as within 1/2 hour of being back at the books, he would be dozing off again. Don’t blame him actually. I did my share of nodding off also.
14 hours a day of training (less breaks and dinners) and what did it get me? Nothing. I don’t even remember if I finished the course. I can’t even put OEC Grad after my name!
I Yawnalot says
Good God man! It gave me the hibbie gibbies just reading your comment. It scared the crap out of me that I could understand what you wrote!
Tell you what, lend me a couple of bucks (or rand?), then go buy yourself a beer or whatever you get your jollies from with the $ and toast yourself lucky you’re away from that shit. Aw man, that sort of experience really sucks!
Now that is the best suggestion yet. I’ll loan you the money (dollars) and definitely have a toast to being away from that BS.
Thanks for the beers – you owe me though. We’ll have to meet up one day and you can pay me back.
I Yawnalot says
That sort of debt I can live with, but I always pay my dues. Yep, be nice to have an ale or two with you. Swap stories with a grin, maybe a grimace or two but also with just a light seasoning of revenge. Oh, to be young again… cheers, enjoy your (my) beer.
I remember Dave Englehart quite well. He was a nice, intelligent and perceptive guy who did well on tasks I witnessed him perform. Never on course with him but as I too nodded off a lot I can definitely relate. Study tech NEVER worked EVER. That is the conclusion I arrived at finally before walking out. Retrospectively, it was solely designed to make students wrong and to introvert and NEVER EVER look at the possibility that the shit just didn’t work to begin with. How dare anyone EVER question the works of the Source.
Yes, Dave was a very nice guy. Not many people know but he sailed a small sailboat from Massachusetts down to the Caribbean. He took a very pretty redheaded lady with him (cant remember her name). The boat was smaller than a lifeboat.
Last time I saw Dave though was about 2 years ago at AOLA. He was not doing well. I seriously felt like he didn’t even recognize me and rambled, rather incoherently, telling Lois and me some sort of story about his daughter and letters he had written to her. I think she is at Flag. He was doing manual labor from what we could gather but not on the RPF. I felt sorry for him.
I think I did figure out what the Demo Kits were for. It was secretly a way of the Course Super to see if someone fell asleep – if he quit moving around the stones and paperclips, he was no doubt dozing. I learned how to move them in my sleep so they wouldn’t catch me.
Nothing worse than writing an essay and waking up to find a long line down the page where you fell asleep. Evidence!
The boat’s name was the Laissez-faire and the girl who crewed for him is Karen de la Carrier. When Flag moved to Clearwater Dave brought the sweet little engineless craft along. He loaned it out so staff could sail on rare times off. It was small but I could take 5 or 6 folks along. Fond, fond memories of those times. Truly about the only ones actually. Makes me line charge to notice that right now!!!!
I am very sorry to hear Dave is (a) still on crew, and (b) isn’t doing so well (on mest work detail). But I too have run into folks I’ve known and am a bit shocked by what I see. So, so glad I walked away when I did.
Mike Rinder says
It was NOT Karen. It was Lieke Strom I think. I cannot figure out why she was with him, but I believe it was her. Definitely not Karen.
Hi Mike. Yes, you’re right! It was Lieke. Remember her well now that you cleared that up. If I recall correctly she was one of the many crew who had difficulty getting legal residency.
I think you are right Mike. That name rings a bell. She was definitely a redhead (cut short) and quite a pretty young lady. Wasn’t American from what I remember. I also was surprised she managed to spend a few weeks sailing down the US coast with him. They hit some major storms from what Dave told me.
I hope Dave doesn’t end up like many of the elderly SO members. The sad part is it looks like he is heading that way. Broken spiritually and physically.
It is good to hear that the Laissez-Faire was put to good use. I got the feeling that Dave must have come from some money just by the fact he had that boat. I wish he could get his hands on it and sail away.
Dave Englehart actually did a logistics ‘mission’ to bring the Laisse-Faire to the lake at Gold/Int from Clearwater. Then he spent his Saturday renos time at Gold fixing it up. Miscavige probably shit canned it after Dave and his wife (Laurie) went back to Flag. Having been the Building 36 CO at Gold, probably now being the Building CO at AOLA.
I Yawnalot says
It always amazes me reading the experiences of SO members. It reminds me so much of the army in peace time without anyone to fight. They run around real busy like with so much stuff to do and impossible orders are thrown into the mix and deadlines are created for absolutely no other reason except they can be. Keeps the troops busy and frustrated at the same time.
It was bad enough in the orgs but the SO were really busy doing what was essentially nothing at all of value to anyone except Hubbard and now Miscavige. So much misery & sacrifice created in the name of Freedom.
The Scientology organisation from any angle is truly fucked!
Jere Lull (37 yrs recovering) says
I’ll confirm that the girl onboard was named Lieke or Likke(I never did get to know her much.) Boat was “Laissez Faire”, which was a 25-foot gaff-rigged sloop by the time he got it to Clearwater. He bought a hull from a manufacturer and fitted out the interior and topsides himself. It seems he’d started with a taller, more conventional rig, but lost it in a storm, and replaced it with an old telephone pole he found nearby. I have Dave and that tiny little crab-crusher to blame for my 40-years’ sailing compulsion, which I started satisfying pretty much immediately following my routing out of the landlocked “sea org”
Pardon me if I don’t cry over your sailing compulsion! LOL I’ve been away from my wonderful Triton yawl for many years. Still miss it. I had one of the very early ones. Tritons were the very first “plastic” boats on the market. The original builders didn’t really know how much to use. so for safety’s sake, they added more. Absolutely one of the stiffest boat I ever sailed! Made it faster than anyone had hoped for.
Nothing bothered me more than having to be on course. Somehow I got through grad school and this kid is telling me I can’t study while slouched in my chair. Are you kidding me? He couldn’t see my face well enough to know if I was going past a misunderstood word.
Many, many years ago I was at flag on a huge win. To keep me occupied i was told i had to start a course. Just showing up in the course room was enough to key me in and be ready for a session!
Why was I so stupid?!!
We were not stupid. We were sincere, honest, naive and TRULY believed we were helping.
We were conned by an expert. End of story.
Brian… you made me laugh with the understanding of our shared experience.
Brian, when you were in, weren’t you personally actually helping? At the mission where I took a couple of courses so long ago, the staff were actually helping, myself and others who attended there. Are you saying that Hubbard conned a lot of people into actually helping? If so, how bad is that?
Because, they were NOT actually helping as they were pushing L. Wrong Tubbolard’s bullshit.
THAT is bad.
There was real help yes Val. I was helped on some things. Was that a good thing as you ask?
For me and a lot of folks that help was a two edged sword. Because Hubbard had psychological problems and moral deficiencies we injested some good things as well as sico ideas.
Being able to differentiate between the data ‘listening helps heal people’ and ‘all critics of Ron are morally equivalent to Hitler’ requires a type of thinking that makes us into a Hitler as well while in the bubble.
It is this cognitive dissonance which is the problem. It’s insidious.
In Scientology, in the church we learned some truths. But we also learned if you ever decide to look independently at Ron or his writings you get punished.
So here is the problem:
Truth and lies become indistinguishable because if we attempt to look at those lies you are met with punishment, losing jobs, prestige, famil, friends and ones spiritual chance for freedom.
When looking independently at Scientology and Ron becomes an evil act taught by Ron, that’s when I see the help as a gateway to hell.
Truth as a threshold to lies more lies and deep cognitive dissonance.
Love despite all provocations to do otherwise to destroy all critics makes a nut job.
I’m not sure you answered the question I asked, but thank you for taking the time to respond. I’m not going to bother to repeat the question.
Val I was in from 71 to 82
OK, when you were in, did anyone help you? Did you help anyone, or try to?
Old Surfer Dude says
“Why was I so stupid?” Welcome to the club. Most of us here have gone through that. But, the great thing is you’re out and you have your old life back! Congrats, Ed!
Thanks OSD, congrats to ALL of us on this site, and the ones who will soon wake up.
Old Surfer Dude says
OSD – As a never-in, it always breaks my heart to read when ‘now outs’, berate themselves as being stupid, dumb, or wasting their lives while in CoS. From my viewpoint these former church members are compassionate, caring, resourceful and very humorous. Being a victim of scientology is not the fault of the former believer.
You ( all who have left the church) were looking to make the world a better place; whether tricked, coerced, threatened or born-in. Sadly, you were victims of a madman. But you are ALL SURVIVORS! Please don’t fill your new lives with regret. Look to your future and all the good our world has to offer.
Postscript: I LOVE your back and forth banter with members of this blog, OSD. You’re a really funny guy. Maybe you have a ‘post-scientology’ book in you.?..written with your particular brand of hilarity. ?
Old Surfer Dude says
Regrets, I’ve had a few, but, then again, to few to mention…
I ‘coursed’ what I had to do,
And saw it through without ‘cognition’… ???
Keep sharing Mike! The whole experience that all ex SCT have lived through is mind blowing.