It’s Saturday, it must be time to hear from Terra Cognita again…
The Bestest, Most Monumentalest Event Ever Ever
The longer I stayed in Scientology, the more I hated going to events.
When I first got into Scientology at my local org, events meant everyone getting off course to listen to a Scientology celebrity talk about a piece of LRH tech. And we students weren’t even expected to make up the time!
The speakers were spontaneous, funny, and full of “ARC.” They encouraged feedback from the audience and everyone had a great time. Nothing was scripted. The events weren’t filmed. There was no video. I had never heard the word: Teleprompter. We weren’t updated on the state of affairs of Scientology internationally.
Events changed once David Miscavige seized the reins. And not for the good.
Events became formalized, stylized, and completely scripted. They also became overly polished and produced. They morphed from warm gatherings to wooden, bloodless mandatory assemblies.
And for those who couldn’t attend the live extravaganza, the event was filmed so people could watch the video back at their local org or mission. Advanced orgs play these videos nonstop in PC waiting rooms.
The More, the Merrier
Over the next decade, DM created more and more “major” events:
LRH’s Birthday Event
Auditor’s Day Event
The Dianetics Anniversary Event
The New Year’s Event
The IAS Event
The Maiden Voyage Event
Release of “New” Technology Events
One event melded into the next until they were barely distinguishable from one another. Production value skyrocketed, and every year they became bigger and bigger; slicker and slicker. In his book, Blown for Good: Behind the Iron Curtain of Scientology, Marc Headley wrote how setting up these events had become full time jobs for some Sea Org members under the direction of a tyrannical David Miscavige.
Speakers became more rehearsed, never missing a beat, never stumbling over a word, never breaking character. Award recipients received a quick, firm handshake from church leader, Miscavige, but weren’t allowed to deliver more than a few overly-rehearsed lines.
Improvisation and interacting with the audience vanished. Whatever warmth and spontaneity existed was lost.
An android couldn’t have done a better job.
I hated every minute of these events.
The Long Slog
Events grew in length from one hour to three. Some were so long they had to be viewed over two or three days. The Maiden Voyage videos have to be watched over four or five days.
The longer these events lasted, the harder it became to stay to the end. Smart people sat in back so they could slip out unnoticed. Just in case they were accosted, many concocted excuses:
“We have to relieve the babysitter by ten.”
“We have relatives visiting from out of town.”
“Something from the Thai restaurant across the street isn’t agreeing with me.”
“I have to be at work tomorrow morning at five o’clock.”
When promised “this event will be shorter,” it would stretch to over three hours.
Everyone Put Your Hands Together!
I rarely felt like clapping—much less, joining in with the obligatory “Hip, hip, hoorays,” while facing LRH. Which was inevitably led by the most manic and possessed person in the room.
Most of the applause was for lies and inflated stats dreamed up by DM. “New” releases and “stellar” achievements warranted standing O’s.
If you didn’t clap, you weren’t a team player. You weren’t showing support and respect for the church. You weren’t part of the “Third Dynamic.” Unlike the rest of the on-purpose audience, you had undisclosed overts and withholds.
I must have been sitting on a shit-load.
The Great Disappearing Act
Scientology illuminati began to disappear as the years flew by. Heber, Guillaume, Ray, Mike… No explanation for their absence was ever given. People were too cowed and drunk on Kool-Aid to ever ask why.
Soon, Miscavige was the only one left. Luckily for his disciples, he was the most accomplished and dazzling speaker of them all!
From every hair on the top of his head, to every word out of his mouth, his performance was “perfect.” His tone level never wavered. He rarely blinked. The man was playing a “deadly serious game,” after all.
David Miscavige was also the master of verbal tech. One of LRH’s most treasured policies, “If it isn’t written, it isn’t true,” didn’t apply to him. Apparently, he’d been privy to Ron’s inner-most thoughts and knew exactly how the founder wanted all his courses and rundowns altered.
I hated his roboticism. I hated his lies.
Faster and Faster!
Events became more and more manic.
They all began with a dizzying array of skyrocketing stats, accompanied by uber-upbeat music. Stat lines shooting out the top of one “affluence” graph after another represented Scientology’s 10X, mind-blowing expansion across the planet.
Note: The narrator of all these events proudly explained to my spouse years ago at Flag that this frenzied introduction was meant to bring the audience “uptone,” prior to Miscavige walking on stage.
While these stats flashed across the screen, the course room on the next floor up was nearly empty every day; three people had attested to the state of “Clear” in last twenty years; two auditors had been created in the last thirty. Stats were beyond dismal.
Events were so “exhilarating” that they were “un-havable.” At least to me. I must have been suffering from one of LRH’s famous “reverse vector” things, because the more overexcited an event was, the more introverted and dark I became.
I hated the hyperbole.
I hated remaining silent as lie after lie flashed across the screen.
“Hi! This is Jill calling from the Org!”
Multiple phone calls imploring people to attend preceded every event. Without exception, members were told “this is an event you don’t want to miss.” This was “the one we’ve all been waiting for.” Something new was being released that “will change the course of Scientology.” DM had discovered a piece of missing tech which guaranteed to flood the orgs with streams of new people. Every event was a platform for the release of something more groundbreaking than the last.
Staff were drilled not to take “I can’t make it,” for an answer. Many would try to help you reschedule your life so you could attend. There was never an acceptable reason not to attend a Scientology event.
A staff member once suggested I cancel a vacation. Another said I was an opinion leader and if I didn’t show up people would be “bummed.” I almost believed him.
After several years of skipping events, call-in personnel got wise and asked to speak with my spouse. I was a lost cause.
I’m so glad I stopped going to events.
Finally the End…almost
Audience members are required to fill out surveys at the end of every event. Since filling in physical and online addresses inevitably led to more flyers in my mailbox and more junk in my e-mail account, I usually left these lines blank. The question, “What did I like best about the event?” was usually left unanswered, as well. Lying was an overt, after all.
For a short while, I wrote what I really thought of the events, along with suggestions on how to improve them. Big surprise: my recommendations went unheeded. Toward the end of my tenure in the church, I refused to fill out these surveys altogether. Yes…I was quite the rebel.
Most of the org staff were regularly conscripted to reg all the attendees after an event. This included signing up students for the just-released, new-and-improved, David-Miscavige-finally-got-it-right version of some course everyone had already done twice—like the Student Hat. When the “Basics” were released, attendees were pressured into buying the just-released, new-and-improved, David-Miscavige versions of all of LRH’s books and lectures. When the Survival Rundown was released at the second Golden Age of Tech event, attendees were asked to plunk down a couple of grand for the just-released, new-and-improved, David-Miscavige version of hundreds of unnecessary objective processes.
If not donating for new e-meters or other “new” rundowns, members were asked to contribute toward “ideal” orgs, the IAS, or any of the scores of ancillary Scientology organizations.
If there was one thing you could count on at an event, it was that DM had dreamed up something else to sell.
I hated filling out surveys. I hated being pressured to buy something I didn’t want.
And I hated not escaping before being snagged by a reg.
At least once or twice a month, local events are held to raise money for buying and renovating “ideal” orgs—multi-million dollar buildings designed to draw in new public at unprecedented rates.
These gatherings are always led by some high energy, cheerleader-type person standing at the front of the room next to a big white board, begging people to “donate!” Inevitably, people succumb to his enthusiasm and agree to surrender more of their hard-earned bucks, quid, or pesos. He gleefully records their names and the amounts they’ve pledged on his board. (He’s a successful local businessman, thanks to LRH technology.)
There were always those who donated more than anyone else. Often beyond their means. Occasionally, a big spender would agree to match whatever anyone else donated.
If you looked closely, you could see the financial gears turning in people’s minds as they tried to figure out how much they could afford. Couples whispering in each other’s ears. People’s lips moving as they added up figures in their minds, working out if their check books had enough for the rent and a small contribution.
As the years dragged on, orgs and missions have had to get more and more creative to extract money from its few remaining—and over-extended—parishioners. In order to “psych people up,” they often hold themed events in which people dress up as pirates or characters from the latest blockbuster movie. Because as LRH wrote, “the more serious you take the game, the more solid you become,” (or something to that effect).
Not only did I hate the whole concept of the ideal org, I hated the guilt-tripping that went on at these events.
Nothing is more fake than a Scientology event.
Still not Declared,
Travis Z says
Quick question, was L. Ron Hubbard a huge jerk like David Miscavige? (ie beating on people, shoving people etc)
Notreally Myname says
I stopped attending events long ago and far away ‘we’re locking the doors and no one is leaving until we reach our donations goal’ (IAS Event). I slipped out the back door and never went back. The calls were answered with ‘I have a prior commitment’. One time I was coerced into saying ‘maybe’ on an event confirmation call …. after THAT event I received a ‘no report report’ for not showing up for the event. They never stopped calling, and I never again made any indication that I would attend and a would mention the ‘no report report’ that had been written and therefore would not ever again say out loud that I might attend. When pressed, I would end the conversation with ‘never give or receive communication unless you yourself desire it, I do not desire further communication in this matter, goodbye.’ Never had a KR or any other report written on me for THAT tidbit I’m pleased to say.
and then… when we were all skilled in avoiding, “the reg events”, IAS, Ideal Org, “Special Important Briefing!”, they went and pulled a fast one on us… they started hauling out the white boards at the end of EVERY event, even the NY’s, Birthday, May 9th events and so on.
NO event was safe.
A fantastic article Terra Cognita! I’m sure you just voiced what many, many scnts in so-called good-standing are thinking right now.
I spent most of my (almost 20 years) in the Sea Org (in Europe) organizing events. (Yes, and I apologize as I was also one of those clubbed seals harassing the scn community. And not just the public, as an SO member we mainly put the pressure down on the poor org staffs as well).
I was fortunate to be allowed to tour around the continent for most of the time. So between 1994 and 2011 I visited practically each org in Europe (this includes Italy which Int mgmt sees as a continent in it’s own right) including many missions and some field groups.
When I just started out I had no clue about the international scene but soon this became very clear. As I visited more and more scn orgs I was constantly shocked by how small and dead these orgs were. What a contrast from the events!!
However, being a well indoctrinated and ‘cool-aided’, on-purpose SO member I rationalized these conflicting facts and waved it off as ‘just good PR’ for the church.
I happened to visit the same orgs as the years went by and noticed how the events became less well attended, the BIS (amount of publics in the org attending a paid service that week) decreasing, HGC’s emptying out, Div 6’s empty etc. At the same time the number of different events increased. Where you used to have one major event every other month and maybe some minor local events every couple of weeks, it now became ‘important’ events every weekend and special briefing events during the week.
Meanwhile I was pushing my own event and it became tougher and tougher to find a spot on the busy event agenda of the org I was visiting. And we were also suffering from less and less attendees. How were we supposed to handle that? ‘Apply a fxxing debug tech checklist!” OMG, this is an entire different story but I’ve never been able to successfully debug a project with the help of a debug tech checklist. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one!
So obviously I got more and more disaffected from watching the ridiculous int events with their exaggerated, blown up stats and then experiencing first-hand what the orgs really looked like.
I mean I looked into each course room, HGC and Div 6 of every org in EU and knew what the scene was. How could I calmly sit and watch those events without losing faith in mgmnt?
Then one day I logged into the CLO data files (where all the statistics of each org and mission were being meticulously tracked) and studied all the major stats in the cont over the last 15-20 years and the trend was VERY clear. Practically all orgs were emergency/danger/
Non-existence trending. With the single exception of moscow and st petersburg in Russia. They were the only ones growing.
So where the hell was all the expansion the COB was talking about?!!
It was all a goddamned lie. I even confronted the DIR I&R with this and she knew what I was talking about and that I was telling the truth. She just became sad about it and said that scn is growing on the internet… right.
To make a long story short, after having tried leaving about 3 or 4 times and being ‘handled’ to stay I finally managed to get the hell outta dodge but not after spending almost 20 years there. The best years of my life… Still hurts.
Terra Cognita says
Derek: Thanks for the insight.
Clearly not clear says
My worst memory was watching a video with long sections of standing ovations at our little mission. Some would stand others sit and our clapping died out before the videos would . So uncomfortable.
“The longer I stayed in Scientology, the more I hated going to events.”
Terra, this ONE SENTENCE was enough for me to hurriedly scroll thru everything else so that I could immediately respond:
It didn’t take long for me to dislike them and in the end I actively loathed them and it took a lot of energy for me to pretend otherwise,
In the end I truly dreaded them and would “steel” myself for them by – this is difficult to describe – encasing my mind or consciousness in a kind of mental and emotional armor. I would prepare myself for them this way, so that afterwards I could lie and smile and say what I needed to say in order to get the hell out there as soon as possible.
Never having been more than a moderate social drinker or into into drugs illegal or otherwise, in the end, I would fantasize about showing up at these things appearing normal but actually in some chemically numb state.
Nothing, and I do mean nothing, EVER tempted me to get drunk, stoned or high as did the concept of having to sit thru yet another one of these things.
Bad enough that I attended under protest, what was worse was pretending that I liked them! Much worse because I was lying and I hated having to lie.
This dread of Int Events began WAY before I started reading the blogs. Way before I wised up and went UTR with my plan to leave.
OK, now I have THAT off my chest I’m ready to read the rest of your article, Terra.
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
I was FSO staff and in 83or 84 we had the March 13 event in the W Auditorium and afterward there was going to be Octoberfest beer from Munich there! Kind of wierd for a church. But I didn’t think of that then. Also, the new Pro Trs course was coming out the next day and staff were going to get to watch it that night. The beer was excellent and I had 4 or 5 beers and then remenbered the movie. I filled up my glass and went in the elevator to the 10th flor FH where the movie was. As I got out of the elevator I realized that I was technically entering a course room and could not take a beer in there. The solution was obvious so I chugged the beer and went inside. I saw many Int Execs in there as this was just before Management went to LA. (To be continued)
I just got a letter from the Ethics Section LAO, PAC CLO Event Dir., Tashania Lexton It’s a Knowledge Report stating that I have not attended an event in the last year! I can’t remember when I laughed so hard. In actuality, I have not attended an event in over 5 or 6 years! Tasnania admonishes me that there are less than a dozen International Events per year and through some perverted logic explains how my absence is destroying society. Yes, I’m laughing, but I’m also pissed as hell. The implied threat is infuriating.
Lynda Castell-Blanch says
It would be cool if you would post the letter, blacking out your name/address etc. I’m not a Scientologist current or former, but the subject is fascinating.
And while you’re at it, send a comm particle back to Tashania that says FUCK OFF!
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
Continued: By then I was getting really fucked up and my only intention was not losing it in front of a bunch of execs that would surely get me shot.
By the time the movie started, the screen was going around the room and I was fighting to keep from falling out of my chair. The Sea Organization may be opposed to drugs, but they taught me how to get drunk. I was not old enough to drink in my home state when I joined; but had repeatedly almost drunk myself into a grave by the time I got out.
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
Now you are not.qualified to be in the SO if you did acid; but on the other hand you must believe that you are hallucinating to accept some of the shit that goes on there. I remember in 1986 we got the Diana moved from Clearwater where someone was trying to steal it to Tarpon Springs where we did a bunch of.work on it. The day we moved it, the I/C; Bob DeSimone organized an award at the Sandcastle for those of us who pulled.it off. He had some pizza and beer. I remember drinking a bunch of beer and eating some pizza Bob’s daughter Karly was there and I believe she had some beer though she was about.15 at the time. Just as I was getting pretty FUBAR; Sheryl Weigand the D/Snr C/S for NOTS came by and told me to stop by her office on the way out. I had a few more beers and as I was leaving I remembered that
I had been ordered to stop by Mr Weigand’s office. As I entered her office she was behind a meter and motioned for me to pick up the cans.
I motioned to the beer in my hand to let her know that I was drunk. (To be continued)
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
(CONTINUED) Mr Weigand said “No big deal, we are only doing a rollback” and she took the beer and placed it on a shelf. She did a rollback on me the only one I have ever gotten. I just laughed and laughed; it being ridiculous to do a metered action on someone who was as drunk as myself. She said. We are done” and went to find an Examiner. Laure Wolfe, then Solo NOTS D of P came in and did the exam. I just laughed through the exam and she indicated an F/N. I got up to leave and retrieved the beer from the shelf.
Laura said “Is that a beer”? I looked at it, took a drink and said “I think so” and walked out.
Scientology and LRH are so utterly boring, and these waste of time events are simply lipstick on a pig.
David Miscavige is a very poor substitute for Tony Robbins, the guru of new-age snake oil. With trumpets blaring and lights swirling, the world is promised but a lump of coal is delivered, at great cost to the sucker who pays.
Gus Cox says
“This was the one we’ve all been waiting for.”
Sounds like the next “Go Diamond!” Amway rally.
Part of the trick with so many events – it kept the crew so over worked with extra duties we had NO time to think! Hill 10 land.
Great post, Terra!
I remember being a staff member and having to go to all those events! Oh, and the call-in! First call: confirm. Second call: reconfirm. Third call: re-re-confirm. The usual response was “DAMMIT, FOR THE FIVE MILLIONTH TIME, I’LL BE THERE! NOW QUIT CALLING MY HOUSE! (Click). Probably passed a lot of people off.
Then the event itself. An intro with hyped up music and a Jeff Pomerantz voiceover intoning something like UNPRECEDEHHHHHHNTED GROWTH IN SCIIIIIIIIIIIENTOLOGYYYYYY AROUNNNNNND THE WORRRRRRLLLD! or some hype like that.
Yes, then came the Dwarfenfuhrer on stage (to rousing applause, of course)and he began to sling the bullshit about how Scientology was permeating every country in the world, how CCHR was throwing psychs in jail at the rate of 200 per day, and how handing out copies of The Way To Happiness caused cannibals to stop eating people. And it all ended with the obligatory ‘Three Cheers For LRH'(couldn’t we have just sang “For He’s A Jolly Good Fellow?” That would have been more fun.).
Yes, then the survey(don’t you dare not fill one out!) and an attempt to sell the newly released materials! We staff were privy to them usually a month before the event and were under strict orders to keep our mouths shut until the official release at the event. This most often than not pissed public off even more ( I already have this book! Why do I need to buy a new one?!!!!). Only the real Kool-aid drinkers actually forked over any cash.
Anyway, those are my memories of doing events as a contracted staff member.
Stephen Hutcheon says
Loved this article – so true, this is exactly how I experienced them all, I think I was so brainwashed at the time ?
so very true TC it felt more and more like a punishment each time we went,at first it was fun sitting there getting the “full atmosphere” of the event, but soon realizing it was total BS, we too sat there trying to find the extra 5,10,100,000 dollars needed it never seemed to be enough,and we felt we were letting people down! crazy i know but when the help button is pressed ….
At one event the” light came on” all the lies unfolded right in front of me and my partner we were part of a group (3) of us looking for a aircraft to purchase we had a budget which really didn’t match what was needed so reg time ! the public can dig deeper we were told in their pockets !
The next event came around and there in all its glory was “the ” plane we and bought painted yellow logo on its side on a VM mission ! what a load of Crap!!! it was never purchased and to this day has never been so. But for everyone there it was so amazing to see. people were coming up to me and saying well done how fantastic ETC and i had to lie and except their warm wishes we greeted teeth! i hated it i hated COB more ! it was time to not move to the back of the room but run for the Hills!
I’ve not heard such an appalling report in a very long while. I thank whatever the powers be I quietly walked in the early 80s, never to be heard of or from again. It was bad enough then. It turned into true physical and mental torture. Miscavige should be convicted and sentenced to 18 hours per day in a small room, listening to recordings of all the events, over and over and over, never stopping.
like your idea and maybe with his eyes tape open ! or is that going to far?!
James Morris says
Staples. And that’s not going far enough!
(Looking at Davey)
The ethics officer always blocking the way out of the org, forcing that damned survey at you. It was easier to fill the thing out, and try to come up with an answer to “what part of the event did you like most?” Then the reg tackling you just when you thought you had a clean getaway. So glad I’m out.
As a former staff member, I am going to teach you how to handle an EO with a survey at an event.
1) Take the clipboard.
2) Under “what part of the event did you like best?” simply write “all of it”.
3) slam the EO in the chest (or over the head if you prefer) with the clipboard.
4) Walk out the door.
That’s really all there is to it.
Perfect TC. So true. I couldn’t stand the events and usually didn’t go. In 2007, near the end of my church days I was at ASHO and there was a sign up sheet in the HGC for an upcoming event. At the top was a note that if you said you were coming then you were “attesting” to that commitment. Ethics actions if you said you’d be there and didn’t show. That was a pretty clear signal of how bad things were, and I was gone within the year. Yes, another whole year of abuse….
Doug Parent says
I’d wager that about 99% of Scientology public cringes in advance of being asked if they are going to an event. Actually they aren’t asked, the caller asks “have you been confirmed yet” ? It’s called a closing question in sales. Church of Scientology = The Cult of Other Determinism. Anything the cult asks for is also a loyalty test. This alone is one reason why the UTR don’t give out their cell phone numbers and why staff know why they get a recording on the land line. It’s a sticky dishonest relationship that is generated by the pressure to conform or else. Just like Donald Trump cannot withhold himself from footbullets the C of S has no choice but to alienate the public or risk getting attacked by someone uplines. It’s another example of finite cannibalism. They will eat their own until no one is left to suppress for the sake of the Almighty Statistic. The Church of Scientology can go fuck itself.
I Yawnalot says
Like your direct approach Doug. Being Australian I don’t know and don’t care much for US politics apart from a passing interest and what a few folks say here every now and again. Aussie politics is enough nausea for me. The Prime Minister of Australia is a banker, lawyer and venture capitalist by profession so that’s all you really need know who/what runs things, people are entirely secondary to what really counts in politics.
I use to directly lie about being confirmed for events in the short transition period when I left the Church until they they realized I was one of those nasty, internet reading apostates. I do like your last sentence though – it’s got feeling and a certain finesse rarely misunderstood except by the most stupid (like Scientologists)!
“They will eat their own until no one is left to suppress for the sake of the Almightly Statistic.”
Spot on, and I agree that your political allusion is analogous. The man who is our current president has been eating his own for decades and as POTUS he continues to do so, apparently.
When a person routes out of the Sea Org, but plays good, I did, I asked Kirsten Caetano if I could go to the LRH Birthday event, she said yes, I went, and I could freely walk the red carpet regging zone without fear, being a Freeloader, the regs there are for the public, and they dont’ try to get the Freeloader Debt out of you, so as a Freeloader, you can slither around the back row seats or balcony of the Shrine, I did, and not be noticed or picked off, LOL.
I tried to tell my work boss, an ex Gold staff and now businessman, tips I knew from policy how to fend off the IAS regs, I black PRed Bridget Kellerer (forget her new name) as having been numerous times having to be corrected for “crim regging.” All ex Sea Org freeloaders ought to know to push the “crim reg” buttons on the Sea Orgers.
But that don’t work anymore, it’s way more a psychological experiment group brainwashed set of staffers doing “event sales” duty today, and “crim regging” is no crime anymore.
I always loved going to events at Flag. I enjoyed seeing all of my friends, shaking hands ,hugging people. Eating the cheese and fruit and pastries that were laid out buffet style.The cake and ice cream.The cappucinnos and cigars by the pool. Watching all the women ,staff and public in their long sexy gowns.
Oh yeah and then that stuff that DM said about some stats that went up,and then the guy with the tuxedo and mullet told some bullshit stories about LRH,and used a lot of big words. Yeah that part was cool too.
Snake Thompson's Ghost says
Okay, so now we’ve also had the bro perspective on Flag events…. 😉
You got good food at your events?
We were lucky if we could score pizza!
Probably because, for some reason, Papa Johnson wouldn’t deliver to the org.
I meant to say Papa Johns.
Fucking spell checker!
I can recall being told a certain event was strictly Black Tie which for me necessitated buying new shoes and a cocktail dress, because I actually didn’t have one at the time. So I arrived all dressed up and saw that they had let in people wearing jeans. I would have been fine with wearing jeans, but nooo, this was out of “respect” for LRH. Well, then why did they let the people in who turned up in jeans? Then, after 3 hours of watching and listening to all this booming, boring shit, they served overcooked Baked Ziti – really pasty and awful – and some wilted lettuce and tomato salad with vinaigrette dressing so strong it burned the throat. The worst food. The Italian in me would have been really embarrassed to serve this. One of the OTVIII’s made it, supposedly. God help her husband. Anyway, that was the last time I gave undue attention to what I’d be wearing to an Int Event. And, thereafter, whenever possible I’d eat something nice and tasty beforehand because the food was for the most part dependably deplorable. Have to say though that in the end, meaning, before i left, they did improve the food. Out of desperation, possibly? I couldn’t say. But by then it was too late. I knew I’d be leaving and never coming back to another damned event even if the buffet table offered filet mignon and profiterole.
What are you talking about? Daring to stand around and eat the food and talk just makes you a target for regges. I went to those same Flag events with the posh food spreads but knew that stopping for a bite can (and did) cost me thousands!
🙂 I can relate. Towards the end at my org they actually served shrimp cocktail! And there really was a lot of it! I was astounded, and determined to get me some. And sure enough, I got cornered by a haggard, desperate-eyed staff member. I liked this woman, she was a very good sort. That second helping of shrimp cocktail cost me another library donation 🙂 But, actually, it was ok. I did it for her. A very nice person.
And I recall asking her if she had enjoyed the shrimp (it was really good) and she told me she hadn’t and that staff had been told beforehand not to eat it.
Now, I had just polished off my second plate of shrimp with cocktail sauce and I was pretty much done with the shrimp at that point, but just the way she looked – so exhausted and at the same time happy and relieved that I had done a library dono – that expression got to me somehow. So I said, “Wait here, I’ll be right back”.
I then returned to the buffet table took a fresh plate and PILED it with shrimp – ostensibly my 3rd helping, while suffering the barely concealed contempt from those behind the buffet table. I could just hear them thinking, “What a pig!”
It was a little embarrassing but I got the plate and went back to her and said in an urgent whisper, “Please come with me, we need to talk”, and of course, she followed me and I led her to an out of the way room and then I handed her the plate of shrimp and said, “Now you eat this”, and she said, “No, no, really, I can’t!”, and I said, “If you don’t eat this, I will cancel the check I just gave you and it will bounce”, and when she looked doubtful, I went into high gear and illustrated how the bounced check would put her in ethics and ME in ethics, her stats would crash and my course stat would crash, and this non optimum non survival time wasting situation would be created all because she refused to eat a plate of shrimp.
You had to see the look on her face. I was playing with her but he took this very seriously.
I continued on in the same vein: I can be merciless sometimes. With my best smile I asked, “What would be the worst overt? What would be the greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics, yours and mine? Is a plate of shrimp more important than planetary clearing?”
And then a miracle happened. She laughed. She started to laugh and she kept laughing and I then I dropped my facade and cracked up too and we were both laughing together and she began tucking into the shrimp and I went back to the buffet table and got her a soda. It felt good, making her laugh.
That is a lovely story. Thanks for sharing Aqua.
Aqua, that was a really theta thing you did for that poor woman. As a former staff member, I can remember being told not to eat the food at events because it was for public only. I learned through this blog that the reason for this was a culinary sales pitch. Again, thank you for your kindness and insights.
One thing for history, the Shrine events always have food for public, and SECRET, the RPFers who come late after midnight to the Shrine to “breakdown” the Shrine, we do that for hours, and then around 4-6am, we in the RPF would have the LEFTOVERS of the event, and that is how we got all sorts of yearly NICE food, LOL!
So, heartless as the RPF is in some ways, the PAC RPFers have for the two times I was on the PAC RPF, the PAC RPFers, and I saw i particular the OSA staffers on the PAC RPF, ensuring that they took some normal treats for themselves, and fudged on the draconian RPF rules.
PAC RPFers in my two RPFs there in LA, I have to give praise to the clever RPFers who got the rest of the RPFers leftovers and treats, and even in the 1980s RPF in PAC, we watched movies, real video movies once or twice, even. Totally off the rules.
So there are some sane moments of joy amid the stupid Hubbard self-inflicted nasty punishment suffering.
*Never in* Reading these couple comments makes me so sad to hear that these are considered joys and happy memories… 🙁
You’re welcome. With no exaggeration, I have seen similar expressions on the faces of street urchin children in the 3rd World after being given a few coins. Utterly exhausted, utterly grateful… no one should look like that, ever.
I remember a young staff member at Flag always commented about my smoking a cigar ,and that he just can’t afford them ,now that he’s on staff training. So the next event ,I brought him 2 big fat Romeo y Jullietts ( cigar brand). I never saw a grin do big.
” a grin so big
Todd Cray says
Well, TC, the “church” so frequently complains that while “bitter defrocked apostates” (who were expelled 20 minutes ago and have no current knowledge) are doing all the talking, no one listens to members in good standing. As you are not declared I guess you are filling this important void of telling us how happy you as a current member are to be part of the fastest growth on the body of world religions. Well done!
Nattering Never-Ins says
I Yawnalot says
Spot on essay Terra. I agree wholeheartedly with you on this one. Any organisation imo becomes a reflection of its controller and the shift when DM took the reins stands out like the proverbial dog’s appendages. Prior to that there were some warm and fuzzies about group gatherings at the Org.
You did jog my memory with this one and it was indeed the introduction of the modern event style and the beginning of the reg-a-thons that first sowed the seeds of descent in in – I hated them! But for a awhile ‘went with the flow,’ as the garnished enthusiasm from above was so great, such was the kool-aid guzzling affect.
I’ve somewhat condensed and generalized my opinion of many things these days, a symptom of old age and not enough tolerance (it’s a precious thing you know) left to spread around but regarding organised Scientology I only have two words, “Fuck Scientology!”
Harpoona Frittata says
When I was a $cilon back in the late 70’s and “practicing my faith” far from the epicenters of $ea Borg madness, we had weekly graduation ceremonies to acknowledge those who had completed some level of processing or training on our journeys up the bridge.
While there was sales pressure to put money on account for your next service, all funds collected were for further training or auditing, never for IAS “statuses” or building funds. However, I was involved with the cherch right around the time that Elron decided to raise prices by 5% per month from their already expensive points, which folks groused about pretty openly at the time, complaining that those kinds of price increases would quickly make $cn services unaffordable to them.
Looking back on it all several years after I exited the cult, it occurred to me that the arbitrary and precipitous price increases, along with the very poor staff pay, were outpoints that I noted at the time, but never connected the dots between while I was in. The subconsciously building cognitive dissonance of those and many other out-points finally crossed some unconsciously created threshold which, when I finally crossed it, became the tipping point that propelled me out of the cult and back into the real world.
I wonder if now that same effect isn’t also quietly building in many other $cilons, who’ve been over-regged and treated as if their attendance at these events was somehow required of them in order to continue to be in good standing with the cherch? I’m sure that it is, but where the threshold is for each individual to finally wake up and begin connecting the many dots which will ultimately propel them out of the cult is a very individual thing, with many different factors affecting that decision.
While the BIG lies told by lil davey just get more and more unbelievable, lots of folks must be having the same private thoughts concerning the situation, but have been conditioned not to discuss their actual true feelings or thoughts with anyone, as if to do so was somehow an act of sacrilege or criminal deviance.
What they should all know is that, as the cult continues to lose members and community support, there’s never going to be a better time to get out than right now. $cn is locked into a death spiral of its own creation and there’s no way that it can save itself from slamming into the ground…but there is still time to parachute to safety for those who are brave enough to jump, praise Xenu! Don’t let yourself be the last cultist out the door!
Nancy Many says
Phil Speckler was a long time successful mission holder. He is also Mimi Rogers Cruise’s Dad. When the 5% per month came out he made a special trip to Flag and turned in his mission charter. He said he couldn’t abide by the absurd price increases and he wasn’t going to lie and say he was when he wasn’t.
A really ethical person. Always admired him for the courage to do that.
I liked Phil a lot. Very ethical guy. Is he still with us?
I’ve read stories (comments) that elron was aware that large numbers of people were blowing because of the monthly price increases but he didn’t care as long as the Gross Income kept going up. From a business standpoint if you can make as much money from half as many people the overhead goes down.
This is all from memory and not presented as historical fact – The initial round of monthly price increases was blamed on keeping up with inflation. I don’t know what the excuse was for the second round of increases.
As I recall when I first got in auditing cost $25/hr and a skilled tradesman earned about $10/hr so the exchange wasn’t all that bad. The first round of increases generally doubled the prices which stabilized for a couple years. The next round of monthly price increases caused the Great Exodus which I mention below.
Just from memory the monthly price increases resumed around 1983 which precipitated the Great Exodus in LA of which I was a part. My guess is that hundreds blew in a short period of time realizing that scn was more about making money than clearing a planet. Many support groups sprang up and I joined one. We discussed other practices and listened to a bunch of channelling tapes. It was fun but eventually the group broke up and we went our separate ways.
Perhaps surprisingly up to that point I had no gripe about the tech per se. I had “gone dianetic clear” and was in the non interference zone (no further auditing, must go directly onto OT levels) and wasn’t about to pay outrageous prices to find out what mysteries lay ahead. Apparently the prices stabilized and those who stuck it out got conditioned to it and membership rose again, even with the sea org ramping up.
I was long gone and never looked back until watching Going Clear got interested and I started reading and participating on the blogs. Since scn covers a lot of areas of life and a lot of people followed other philosophical pursuits, I’ve learned quite a bit from what they’ve shared and my own follow up studies.
People watching the Aftermath and hearing about people spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on scn might think “How could they be so . . . (fill in the blank.) Without being facetious, looking at people joining up at a much later date than I did, I might also think the same thing, but such is the allure of attaining “OT Powers” and the pseudo scientific presentation of “The Bridge”. It seems scn is now hobbling along with foreign recruits, born-ins and whales (big time spenders who get treated like royalty).
Harpoona, reading your comment makes me wonder about something I’ve never seen addressed before – though maybe it has been.
I wonder how many people are staying in right now, just because they hope that the CofS is so close to some sort of organizational collapse or at least drastic change, that it won’t be long before they can just walk away without having to worry about enforced disconnection and other consequences.
Maxim Zbitnoff says
The last event I attended was at the Shrine in 1996. LRH birthday. Not able to submit to the speaking or clapping I spent my time in the lobby visiting with others who no doubt were of like mind. At the time I was already well on my way out the door. Back in the day when I first got in speakers and events were more fun and not so scripted. In 1968 I remember one guy advising that you didn’t need to worry about the conditions formulas. He got in trouble…lol.
Max, good to see you posting here. I read something on the internet back when I first started looking and it was posted by your son who said that when you were still in the church, you disconnected from him when he had doubts about the church and had read some of the stuff about LRH etc from the internet. Did you and your son ever get back together?
ASC Member says
Not only were they long but LOUD once DM took over.
Lois Reisdorf (Lowie) says
So true TC! Having been out of scn for 30 years from 82 and then getting back onlines in about 2012 to try and save my family, I now had to go to some of the events and/or watch them on video at the local org. It was SHOCKING to me……..in the “old days” events were really fun, quick and ended up with people dancing etc, like a real party. But these new DM versions were horrific to me and I was truly disgusted. And the “regging” afterwards was soooooo bad. On top of that, they would stream these videos in the tech services area of the HGC at AOLA, and so you had to then listen to DM’s voice and all the weird music and blah blah blah……….right before going in session.
Idle Morgue says
When I was in – I saw one of the “surveys” being reviewed by the staff members. They were to put down “if the comment was above or below 2.0 on the Tone Scale”. If it was below 2.0 – it was to be discarded.
Yep – saw it with my own eyes.
Discarded? Meaning, not sent up lines, correct? If so, WOW! Nervous, scared Class V org staff!
Explains all the hyped up horseshit you see at Maiden Voyage events.
I hated the few events we had on the Apollo. Just like Terra said, the clapping was effing nuts. I got tired of clapping so after a few seconds I would just pretend to be smashing my hands together and never really making a sound.
I don’t think we even had any events at INT, neither La Quinta nor Gilman in the 5 years I was there. Yay!
The last event I went to was at some rented hotel conference room here in San Diego 2 years ago. We ate their food, listened to some Flag regges talk BS about the L’s and how wonderful the FH was. Lois and I then walked out. They said “where are you 2 going” I said, “home” and kept walking to my car. They left us alone.
God, I hated these events too.
The first one I saw was the IRS event “The War is Over.”
At least this one was reporting on something that really happened but I still thought that song they sang at the end was one of the cheesiest I had ever heard.
One of my friends from the Czech Republic he was visibly shocked after attending his first event.
He said “If they try to promote it like this in Eastern Europe then everyone will say that Scientology is Communism because all of that cheering and clapping and other nonsense is just like a Communist Party rally.”
I always felt less well-informed about what was actually going-on after attending one of these events, a bit like watching the Network News in the US.
The biggest outpoint was the lack of any comprehensive statistics. What I wanted to know was what were the International VSDs, student points, WDAH over the last 20 years.
Instead we were told that the check sheets studied by students over the last year would reach to the Moon and back. The gibbons in the audience gave this rubbish a standing ovation.
Was the stat up or down even? They were not saying.
It was always obvious that something was very wrong. If the Int. VSDs had been any good, they would have been shouting them from the roof tops.
Some where around the IRS War was over, we started getting shown the sz footage stats. I thought WTF, that’s the stat of an Estates Manager. Course the next thought was DM must know best.
When I saw the IRS “war is over” event, I was kind of okay with it until the Dwarfenfuhrer yelled “THE WAR IS OVER!” and then the loud music came up with the words THE WAR IS OVER being flashed on the screen giant sized. That was the part that turned me off. Still does.
I absolutely hated trying to dodge the gauntlet of staff members with clipboards who “needed” to confirm that I was going to be attending the event. After course all I wanted to do was leave the org, try to get out the front door without being noticed. They would be in the hallways and stairwells and lobby area. It was virtually impossible to get past them.
See my previous reply to outandabout.
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
This is all true, Terra.
Let me give you something that should brighten your day though it terrified me at.the time.
It was about 1998 and the 1st day of Maiden Voyage on the Freewinds. I was sent to the Green Room where the 1st MV event was to start. I was usually sent there in case of something going wrong engineering wise. There was no great point in sending me up there; there was little I could do to handle any problem, but I figured the main reason I was there was so that there would be someone to shoot in case something went wrong. Since by then I felt that that was the inevitable E.P of being in the SO; that was acceptable to me.
The event was to start and DM was at the microphone. As he started to speak there was a small screech of feedback. DM then said ” We will get this Maiden Voyage going as soon as someone back there (where I was) handles that feedback.” There was a silence and then DM said “Well, it looks like I still have some authority around he…..SCREEEEEECH!! Another screech many times louder than the 1st one ripped through the Starlight. It was if we ad all told DM to get fucked.
Bill, Your stories are always interesting and well told. We with a good application of humor. I look forward to them.
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
Thank you Most Ethical Pimp. My sense of humor has no doubt been aberatted by the obvious lack of any pro-survival future in the SO. I am glad that it is not too repellant.
Bill…… your story was a real belly laugh! Seems like DM can’t control everything! I wonder if those “screeches” broke the sound barrier OR someone’s eardrums, lol!
Dead Men Tell No Tales Bill Straass says
I expected the door to fly open and the Gold crew and myself to get mowed down by machine gun fire. However, I did not get off that easy.
Nancy Many says
I was so happy after I left the Sea Org to not have to attend events any more. I would get the call and confirm. Of course I would confirm, then the phone calls would stop being incessant and I would say “already confirmed”. Never had any attention on going…. Such a relief..
Felt a bit too much like a Nazi rally and all the standing and clapping standing and clapping Hip Hip Horrah…
Most of what came from the stage I knew to be lies….
One of my last “rallies” was when we were told at Flag that the GO didn’t do it, it was all SP’s and that it had been settled. As I walked back to my offie I passed a newspaper stand with MSH on the cover saying “We did it, We’re sorry”…
The worst was that I knew most of my fellow SO members believed the “PR Line”…
I Yawnalot says
Yep, it’s tough call when you see your colleagues buying the PR line. Makes you wonder what’s wrong with you. Truth and honesty don’t announce themselves with the same fanfare as bullshit. But take a bow kiddo and all those who woke up, sunshine often comes at a cost but it feels great and it’s the only relief that truly works!
Xenus Brother In Law says
I’ve got a copy of your book at home which I have read several times. In fact I’ve got copies of all the books written by ex’s, either in e format or hardback/paperback format. And I’ve read them all several times……..
The part of your very well written book which really connected with me, was when you described your mental breakdown under the rigours of sec checking.
To cut a very long story short I ended up having the same thing happen to me, except on a smaller scale. I had very strong suicidal thoughts and was consequently put on some weird version of the Introspection Rundown, which basically consisted of locking me up at night and being escorted everywhere!
Even in my completely shot away condition back then, I realised that this “nanny watch” was NOT for my benefit. It was 100% for the benefit of the “execs” at the mission I was in. If I’d carried out something stupid and topped myself then it would have been “bad PR” for the “church”, and the execs would have been in deep shit.
I should add that my $cientology “career” never went above mission level, despite the sea org’s best efforts to get me to join……. Thank God for that! I’ve read many ex sea org testimonials and I simply do not know how you guys managed this complete mind fuck, day in, day out, 365 days a year for, in some cases, 20, 30 years or more. Hats off to you all. You deserve a medal.
I should also add that, thinking back on it, I was never a “scientologist”. I was simply dragged into it from the time that I completed an OCA, and not allowed to “think for myself”. Naturally enough the usual tactics were utilised. Non stop love bombing, being made to feel “special”, being told that “the next grade will do the trick, now get your cheque book out!”, etc…….
The thing that kept me in was the money that I was putting into it all. I didn’t want to lose my funds so I ended up putting good money in after bad. All in the hope that the “miracle” would happen and that I’d become super human and capable of anything. Naturally enough this never happened.
The mission knew that I had money. I once told the execs this back when I thought that they were the most ethical people on the planet. How stupid of me! After this all they wanted was my money………
Anyway, back to the point……….
When I was first in scamology I used to go to the events. Initially they had the “wow factor” for me, just the way they were designed. However, once I became more and more disillusioned with the whole scene, I ended up despising the events.
I ended up thinking that I had had ENOUGH of having $cientology rammed down my throat, 365 days a year, from the time I woke up, to the time I went to bed. With the sleep time fairly minimal this was a LONG day to have this crap being constantly shoved in my face.
Now onto the master plan……….
The mission I was in was constantly being ordered to attend events at St Hill, on a Saturday evening usually. Once I had left staff but remained a public member, I was constantly being harassed to attend the events. Instead of indulging in non stop arguments about why I couldn’t go, I used to simply tell the person doing call ins that I’d be going. Then I wouldn’t turn up at the mission on Saturday evening where they had a coach waiting. Neither would quite a few others from what I’ve been told since. The coach frequently departed with around 10 people on board! LOL.
Naturally enough after a few times of this happening the order came down that anyone confirming that they were attending, but then didn’t, would be an ethics case. YAHOO! Time to take the piss out of the Ethics Officer!
So, one fine day I got called to the mission by the Ethics Officer. The conversation went something like this:
EO “Where were you on Saturday night?”
Me “At home”.
EO “Why weren’t you at the event?”
Me “”cause I didn’t want to go!”
EO “What were you doing instead?”
Me “Having a few beers and watching the footie”
EO ” But you confirmed that you were going to the event!”
Me “That’s right”
EO “Why did you do that?”
Me “’cause no one here takes no for an answer, so I told them Yes, just to shut them up”
EO “But this mission paid for a coach to take people to the event”
Me “Not my problem pal. Makes a change for the mission to pay for something anyway. It’s usually me who pays……..”
End of conversation.
Nancy Many says
Thanks for sharing Xenus BIL.. Don’t know that there is a ‘smaller scale’ once you have fallen down that rabbit hole, it’s just hell… You and I were both lucky not to get the “Full Scale Baby Watch”.. I didn’t because Lisa had just died 6 weeks prior (though I didn’t know it), and you, most likely because you were not SO. But the callousness was the same. It was not about us – the injured people, it was about covering their own asses…
Just like when your money dries up, so does the love bombing.
I was very successful in saying I was going to the event and then not showing because I was in LA – no bus’s and no way to verify if I went or not.
The two biggest freedoms I felt after leaving the Sea Org was – a) being able to go to bed whenever I wanted, and b) not having to sit through anymore stupid events…
“I’ve read many ex sea org testimonials and I simply do not know how you guys managed this complete mind fuck, day in, day out, 365 days a year for, in some cases, 20 – 30 years or more. Hats off to you. You deserve a medal.”
Hell fuckin’ yeah. A medal for every day in would not be overdoing it.
Great post, Xenus Brother In Law. Highly informative. I can relate.
The sadder part is that MSH believed with all her heart that she was protecting Ron and that she needed to say exactly what she said per Bolivar. I cried that night (when no one was watching of course), it was just wrong on so many levels.
I’m not sure how much of the quiet exodus that happened at that time was due to that one lie, but I do believe there were more than just the two of us who truly understood the depth of what had happened there and how that wrong could not be righted.
Nancy Many says
yes, it was difficult to deal with the knowledge that LRH threw her under the bus and allowed her to go to jail for his activities.
I was not in Scientology when LRH threw MSH under the bus. For many years as a public I was ignorant about LRH’s family. I had some vague idea that they had to be in and active. What I’m thinking now is that, LRH’s own tech, he would have to have known that by not taking responsibility himself and instead permitting MSH to take the fall, by not owning up to his part in the debacle and shunting the blame to her and others, he was doing himself in, rather thoroughly. Big mistake. I was never around him personally but from what I’ve read his personality continued to devolve into more and more blame and make wrong of others and less and less rationality and personal responsibility in the late 70s and early 80s. Pretty much textbook missed withold phenomena, it would appear, but then, I wasn’t around him so this can only be conjecture on my part.
Nancy Many says
You may not have been around, but you know enough about human nature to pretty much nail it. Though I don’t know that LRH ever took full responsibility for his actions and their consequences. I don’t think there were these “golden years” – mainly due to reading Helen O’Brien’s book from the early 50’s. The LRH she wrote about back then is the same one I encountered in late 70s early 80s.
I hear you. I’m going to read that book. If I’ve got illusions or delusions about LRH based on my positive, if limited experience of the workability of various Scientology tech as it has applied to my own life, I’m gonna take a deep breath and have these delusions shattered, if they have to be. I think I can handle it; once and for all separating the man as he really was from his “creation”. There’s more to this than meets the eye. A man is not what he creates, necessarily. Sometimes his creations are reflective of who he is, and sometimes not, I think. I’m still working thru this concept.
Nancy Many says
Yes, Helen’s book is a good read and I believe it is available on the internet now. LRH’s personality did not seem (to me) to change throughout the years. After I was out I made a list of all the Scn things that I had found helpful to me,,, I researched and eventuallymound that they all had been taken from others. And those sources had much more depth on whatever the subject was.
One shocker for me was finding the C.S.W. policy – word for word taken from a navel officers manual….literallycompletely taken and put his name on it.
Now that we have the internet, should not be difficult for you to find where those things you liked truly came from.
I used to own a first edition (i manuscript format) in which LRH thanked many many people for their contributions to the tech,, over the years that dwindled down to thanks to no one,,, it was only LRH…
Got it on all, Nancy. I do find portions of LRH’s tech workable and as such utilize them regularly in my business and personal life. I say “LRH’s” tech only in that I have not done yet the research which you and others have done that shows he lifted data from other sources and then claimed it as his own. That said, I have no doubt, really, that he did lift things from other sources and reworked them.
But then, I don’t have a problem with his having done that.
My main concern about anything I use to get things done and to create the effects I want to create in my life is workability.
“Workability” for me means it works for everyone, not just me.
LRH put certain things together which are easy for me to read and apply. They work and they help me and I rely on them.
If in so doing I’ve been giving credit to him that he doesn’t deserve, this is an issue I’ll have to sort out at some later point. In the meantime, I’m not hurting anyone, I’m only helping, and as such using “the tech” for good purposes.
That said, there is some LRH tech I would NEVER use in my business.
For example, I’d SLIT MY THROAT before using ONLY statistics to make decisions and manage the people who work with and for me. Slit my throat, I tell you! If I’d done that I would have lost my business 20 years ago! Its insane! Stats have their uses and the business benefits from them but to have them be the be all and end all…what a horror!
Which is why I really meant it when I said that anyone who served for ANY length of time in the Sea Org deserves a medal for every day in. That was NOT hyperbole on my part!
As a small business owner for the past 25 years, I get the shudders just thinking about what you endured.
And, last but not least, I am well aware that, having not known LRH personally, nor experienced his bad side personally, “knowing” him SOLELY thru his written words and lectures, its A LOT easier for me to be objective concerning him and the tech than it would be if I had observed and/or experienced, via him, abuse and injustice
A LOT easier!
Frankly, I don’t know if I’d be able to ever be objective, if I had observed or experienced what others have with regard to him. Anyone who can be objective in spite of such damaging experiences has my admiration and respect.
I’ve had jobs with corporations that held events that were similarly cheesy, overproduced, boring and phony. It’s really hard to put up with that kind of forced celebratory, pep-rally mentality, especially when you know the real sales stats.
Attendance may be obligatory but ultimately, the company PAYS YOU a living wage for you to put up with it. This scenario – where you basically have to subsidize them, and still show up for the self-aggrandizement is beyond obnoxious. This sounds sorta like Amway where you end up using your salary to buy products because the market is saturated and you can’t find customers, and the only decent thing they make is the overpriced laundry detergent. But you still are pressured to show up at the rallies. DM has created the down-line marketing version of religion. Yuk! I feel ya.
I think there are huge differences:
1. There aren’t a half a dozen a year
2. The decibel level is not louder than rock concerts
3. The same speaker doesn’t speak every single time and say the same thing every single time.
4. You aren’t punished if you didn’t stand and scream and clap at the proper moments
5. The statistics are based on reality
6. They feed you.
7. They don’t corner you afterwards to get you to donate hundreds of thousands more to your “status level”
8. The people building the sets aren’t paid poverty wages and forced to stay up all night doing it.
9. The people working the events are not mentally abused for weeks prior and the day of.
10. There is a bit of spontaneous give and take.
I’m sure there’s more.
Ann Kramer says
Fascinating progression. What does it mean to be Scientology illuminati? Were those the more senior staff members who knew what the original church and doctrine were prior to DM? Just curious…
I Yawnalot says
Keep it simple Ann. My take on it is anyone who thinks the sun shines where is doesn’t and has either the money or the influence to make it appear that it does.
I would applaud your well written article, but I’m afraid that it would bring back nightmares of previous events that I had to attend.
TC, you mirror my thoughts and the majority of everyone else who has been in, except for the truly brainwashed robots. Very clearly stated. Thank you.
It was five years prior to my final departure that I stopped standing and clapping at each and every “applause line.” It was that same event on the way home my wife and I were talking and she said it’s “white PR” and I boldly asserted, “no it’s not. It’s unadulterated bullshit.”
She did NOT write a KR.
Wow! You and your wife were grave people, I was thinking after RB yesterday how many spouses would have felt obligated to KR their spouse after those covversations. Thanks for letting me know that even in some scientology marriages, some spouses, unlike my ex, took marriage vows seriously
Len Zinberg says
A GREAT post is one that triggers memories and emotions long buried and contains the unmistakable ring of truth.
This is a GREAT post.
One of the best!
Uck! Glad I missed all that “fun”.
I’m with you! When it stopped being fun I bailed out.