Because of various problems with Blogger, I've copied everything as of November 26, 2012 over to WordPress. The new location is Ask the Scientologist. I am not deleting this blog and will still accept comments and answer questions here too, but any new articles will appear at the WordPress location. I apologize if this causes any problems.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Understanding the "Scientologist Attitude"

As an inevitable result of the collapse of the Church of Scientology, there are lots of Scientology true believers appearing outside of the church.  There will be more.

This means that non-Scientologists are going to have a lot more exposure to the Scientology true believer's attitude and statements.

And this will, inevitably, be quite annoying.

To be specific, I am talking about the Scientology dogma and beliefs such as:
  • L. Ron Hubbard was a genius and was never wrong.
  • Scientology is perfect and can and will solve all the world's problems.
  • Scientology works 100% on 100% of the people.
  • Scientologists are homo novis, existing at a new, higher state of existence.
Disputing these "facts" with a Scientologist is a waste of time as they are forbidden from moving one inch from this ideology.

But there is something about this dogma and about Scientologists that you should know.  It may help you tolerate Scientologists a bit more.

They actually know that those precepts are not true.  If you can talk to many of them in a trusted, off-the-record environment, they will easily admit exactly that.

But any Scientologist, even outside the church, who wants to have the image of being a true Scientologist must echo these absolutes with never a visible question or doubt.

Scientologists must say these things, and they must believe these things and they must think these things, even though they really do know they are untrue.

It may be a bit difficult to understand how one can make oneself "think" something that one knows is untrue, but that is a skill that can be learned -- and Scientology does teach it.

Anyone who has studied Hubbard, especially any of Hubbard's lectures knows, without a doubt, that he was a story teller.  The stories he told were quite fanciful and wondrous.  Too wondrous.  I've never met an ex-Scientologist who was ever surprised to discover the proof that Hubbard was, let us say, less than honest in his story telling.

As for the perfection of Scientology and the all-encompassing solutions it allegedly provides -- every Scientologist has experienced the failures of Scientology technology.  Yes, every single Scientologist.

Sure, Scientologists have experienced some workable stuff, which is what convinced them to become Scientologists, but every single one of them has been promised "higher states of being" which, when they have "reached that level", be it Release, Clear or OT, has turned out not to exist.

Every Scientologist has experienced some "bad results" and "no results" from Scientology.  So every Scientologist knows that Scientology is definitely not 100% workable on 100% of the people, they know that it does not have all the solutions.

And they do know that they did not become homo novis.

While true believers still believe that Scientology is mostly good, they do know those absolutes, as stated above, are definitely not true.

But they will continue to make those statements as if it were true because believing, thinking and saying those things are required by Scientology dogma.  You cannot call yourself a true Scientologist unless you adhere to those requirements.

Which, by the way, explains why Scientologists are so strident and defensive about these precepts -- they know they aren't true and therefore they know they cannot prove them true, but they are still required to claim they are true.

And so Scientologists are very, very annoying and confusing to non-Scientologists.

Just understand that, beneath all those words and insistence on their dogma, all Scientologists really do know that these absolutes they are claiming for Scientology are not true.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Scientologists Disunited

The unity of the Scientology community isn’t so united today.

It used to be very simple.  All Scientologists had one very firm, very stable foundation for their belief system:  If L. Ron Hubbard said it, it was true.  Scientology was, and only was, what L. Ron Hubbard proclaimed.

Scientologists completely trusted the system.  If a policy letter or bulletin appeared, over Hubbard's signature, well, that was it – it came from Ron.  If it was later cancelled or revised, well, that must have been what Ron wanted done.

But it isn’t that easy any more.

Blame it on David Miscavige.

In the last three decades David Miscavige has been making massive alterations to just about every aspect of the Scientology technology and belief system.  He has drastically changed all the training.  He has changed how, when and why the tech is applied, changing basic definitions of key Scientology terms such as the “Second Dynamic”, the “Floating Needle” and so on.  Miscavige has completely rewritten Hubbard’s cherished books.  Miscavige even hired a voice actor to duplicate Hubbard’s voice to “fix” Hubbard’s lectures.  Everywhere you look in Scientology, you will see Miscavige, not Hubbard as the “Source” of the technology.  Everywhere you look in Scientology, you see Scientology as “re-created” by Miscavige.

And, today, Scientologists are finally realizing that things are not right.  Today, Scientologists are finally becoming aware of how much destruction and corruption Miscavige has inflicted on Scientology.

And therein lies the problem.

You see, Scientologists no longer know exactly which Scientology technology is “pure Hubbard” and which has been corrupted by Miscavige – or others.

The problem is this:  Every time Miscavige stuck his fingers in the technology and changed it the way he envisioned it should be, he claimed to have uncovered some heretofore lost letter or instruction from Hubbard

As time went on, Miscavige stopped even bothering with that canard and just changed whatever he wanted in whatever way he decided was best.  Even OT VIII (all the different versions) is believed by some to be authored by Miscavige and not Hubbard at all.

So, were there lost, hidden instructions from Hubbard for any of these changes?  Were some of the changes things Ron forgot?  Did Ron make fundamental mistakes that needed correction?  Are any of the changes something Ron would approve of?   If so, which?  Who can tell?  Who decides?

Given that Miscavige often bragged that he had mastered Hubbard’s handwriting and could forge documents and even Ron’s signature perfectly, is there any way to definitively prove any piece of tech changed in the last 30 years is “pure Hubbard”?

That's a major problem for Scientologists.  But wait, there’s more.

Now that the Scientology bubble has burst, Scientologists are now able to access hitherto forbidden documents.  Like the documentation that shows David Mayo was actually the person who developed and wrote the NOTs technology and the Happiness Rundown.  Additional documents indicate that other Scientology tech might have been developed by others – Power Processing, for instance.

What used to be a very simple thing for Scientologists has now become incredibly complex, if not impossible.

If a Scientologist still wants to apply Scientology, well, what is Scientology now?

And this is the primary source for today's disunity among Scientologists.  Without a trusted authority who can definitively verify and prove which Scientology tech is "pure" and which is corrupted, each Scientologist is forced to work that out for themselves.  And each Scientologist seems to have a different idea on it.

Undoubtedly, many will just find some new authority figure to make that decision for them, but there are now many different authorities with many different ideas on the subject.

No matter what, Scientologists can no longer be a completely united group.  From now on, a Scientologist's personal determination as to what works and what doesn't work is paramount, whether anyone verifies it as "pure" or not.

And that's actually the right way to do it.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Scientologists: What Went Wrong?

More and more Scientologists are recognizing and acknowledging that the leader of the Church of Scientology, David Miscavige, has destroyed Scientology. In Scientology terms, David Miscavige is a textbook “Suppressive Person”.

Some Scientologists are simply stepping away, some are staying, gritting their teeth, hoping for better days, and some are calling for a “new leader”.

A new leader? That’s it? That’s the solution?

No.  Until Scientologists analyze, understand and handle the fundamental reasons why David Miscavige came to power, was able to do so much damage, and was able to continue to do so much damage for over thirty years, Scientology as an organized religion, is doomed.

David Miscavige represents a fundamental failure of Scientology. Until that is acknowledged, disasters like Miscavige will happen again and again and again – because there is nothing there to stop them.

Let me expand on this. According to L. Ron Hubbard, there are three pillars to Scientology technology: Ethics, Tech and Admin.

Ethics tech failed in the most fundamental way. Scientologists knowing and applying all that Ethics tech over many, many years failed to detect and handle Miscavige, although his destructive actions began quite early in his career. Additionally, Ethics tech failed to protect all the good people that Miscavige destroyed over his career. There were hundreds of “highly trained” Ethics people who completely failed to catch this sociopath and completely failed to protect the innocent victims of Miscavige. You have to be asking yourself, "Why?"

Auditing tech failed as well. Miscavige failed to complete his training at Saint Hill. Miscavige received auditing all the way up to OT VII, but no auditor caught his crimes, his insanity. No Case Supervisor detected “no case gain”. No one noticed or handled him when he stopped auditing entirely (supposedly a very bad sign). In addition, one of the primary duties of anyone “tech trained” is to defend Hubbard's technology from any alteration and this didn’t happen at all. Miscavige romped through all of the Scientology technology, changing everything and no one stopped him. Auditing tech failed to do what Auditing tech is supposedly designed to do. Again, why?

And finally, Scientology’s Admin tech failed completely. All those checks and balances, all that policy, all those people who were so carefully trained in the “right” way to do things – Miscavige threw it all out, along with the most experienced staff. All the many, many volumes of Scientology policies, all those thousands of trained Scientologists completely failed to stop Miscavige's crimes, abuse and destruction. Scientologists need to ask "Why?"

Scientology failed in the most fundamental ways.

And it will fail again, even under some “new leader”. Decades ago in Scientology, there were a lot more people who were better trained and had more power and more experience, and they failed to stop Miscavige and his disasters. What makes anyone think that things would be better today?

According to Scientology, it is not the people that failed. Thousands of Scientologists have been trained in these Scientology technologies, some to the very highest levels. These people successfully completed their Scientology training. Graduates of Scientology courses are, by Scientology’s own claims, always able to apply the subject 100% successfully, 100% of the time. Scientology says that if they don’t, they will be found and corrected. By Scientology’s definition, all these Scientologists were exactly, correctly applying Scientology technology.

And every single one of them failed to detect and stop David Miscavige.

This is a significant failure of Scientology training. This is a fundamental failure of Scientology.

Scientologists had absolute faith that Scientology technology would protect the church from any failures.  Now, no one with any awareness and intelligence would put any faith in Scientology to avert any future disasters.

Ultimately, Scientologists need to figure out why Scientology technology failed so badly.  If they don’t work that out, if they refuse to look at that, but just have faith that “Scientology is perfect and will protect us”, then they are all truly doomed.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Scientology vs. Creativity

This may come as a bit of a surprise to some, especially to Scientologists. Everyone knows how much the Church of Scientology pursues "celebrities". Everyone knows how much Scientology wants the celebrity's creativity to be viewed as something "improved by Scientology".

So, you might not expect it, but creativity is actually frowned on by Scientology. If you are a creative person, make sure you do not apply that creativity to anything relating to Scientology. It is not only discouraged, it is, to all intents and purposes, forbidden.

This has many manifestations.

The most obvious one is with the Scientology technology itself. In the early days of Dianetics and Scientology, creative people would take ideas from L. Ron Hubbard and see what they could do with them. They created, they changed, they improved.  They saw what worked and what didn't.  They would send reports back to Hubbard who would then incorporate these proven ideas back into Scientology as his own.

Later, Hubbard would claim that no one ever contributed anything useful to Scientology -- but the early practitioners knew differently. Without the contributions from those early creative people, the success of Dianetics and early Scientology, such as it was, would not have happened.

But now, creativity is suppressed.

In the Scientology administrative area as well, creative people have been the only ones who could get things done. Hubbard's administrative policies, when applied very exactly and very strictly, simply cause problems. Historically, the only work getting done in the Church of Scientology was accomplished by creative people who were willing to work outside of the rules. This really was the secret that kept Scientology going for as long as it did. These people found creative ways to get around Hubbard's unworkable restrictions and actually get their jobs done.

As creativity has been further rooted out and suppressed in David Miscavige's Scientology, these creative people have left. Today, pretty much anyone who is still there does everything "by the book". Hubbard's administrative policies are strictly adhered to. Miscavige's unworkable dictates are followed to the letter.  And, of course, absolutely nothing gets done.

Scientology suppresses creativity and this is one of its fatal flaws.

When one thinks of the great religions of history, one often thinks about the art that they inspired -- great works of art, great mosques and cathedrals, music to inspire generations.

Not, of course, the Church of Scientology. No great art. No amazing music. Ever wonder why? Well, Hubbard fancied himself an artist and a musician. He wrote policy letters about it. Any music produced by and for Scientology must follow Hubbard's policy letters exactly. The result is "upbeat" -- and vapid. There is very little creativity allowed or demonstrated.

What little artwork is produced by and for Scientology is, likewise, constrained to follow Hubbard's extensive directives. As anyone can attest, who has seen the "art" in the florid stage settings of the excessive event videos, the results are simply awful.

How about Scientologists who are not on staff? Don't they produce music and art? Yes, but ... they are constrained as well. They must not produce anything mentioning "Scientology", "Hubbard" or any other Scientology-related terms. If they tried to do so, they would have to get official approval from the church. And approval is not forthcoming.

Scientology does not like creativity. It is too hard to control. It is too unpredictable. So, it is forbidden.

If you've been told that Scientology will "help you be more creative" (and Scientology does say that), that is about as far from the truth as it can be.

If you are creative, and if you cherish your creativity, then you need to stay as far away from Scientology as you can get.

Creativity is fun. But then fun is also forbidden in Scientology.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Truly Courageous People

I've been reading various forums and blogs. I've noticed that some people are talking about how "courageous" some of the new escapees from the Church of Scientology are.

I do understand that courage is, to some extent, subjective. For some, it takes a huge amount of courage to just get out of bed in the morning. For others, an activity like skydiving is just good fun. But on a relative scale, those who fought the church in the early days and whose lives were pretty thoroughly destroyed, they were really courageous.

I understand the Church of Scientology's OSA (secret police) are still pretty nasty, but the Church of Scientology's illegal and unethical actions, years ago, against Paulette Cooper, Larry Wollersheim, Arnie Lerma, Gerry Armstrong, Robert Vaughn Young and so many more, were much worse. None of us later escapees have had to deal with anything like those earlier illegal attacks by the church.

Back then, the target of the Church of Scientology's wrath often stood quite alone. There was no Internet. There was no support. There was no sharing of information and exposure of the attacks. There were no ubiquitous video cameras to record the church's crimes. Often these early targets didn't know what evil the church was capable of until too late.

Today, while the Church of Scientology still believes its actions are completely above the law, it has learned that people are watching, and recording their actions. And the church hates being recorded when they break the law.

Also, today, there are so many more critics, and so many less OSA staff, the Church of Scientology's "Office of Secret Abuse" is spread very, very thinly. I've heard of fairly prominent recent escapees who haven't seen any OSA operatives at all.

No, today, the risk of criticizing the Church of Scientology is much, much less. I'm certain that it does take some courage, especially for a True Believer, to speak out and expose the crimes of the church, but I think it is important to keep in mind those who fought the battle long before us, those who didn't have the support, those whose lives were ruined by the lies, criminal attacks, false accusations, spies and lawyers of the Church of Scientology.

Let's put the mantle of "courageous" on the correct shoulders, shall we?

If I were looking for a hero in the battle against the corrupt Church of Scientology, I would look to those who refused, from the very first, to go along with the church's lies, fraud, abuse and crimes. I would look to those who saw the corruption of the Church of Scientology and stood up for what was right despite the consequences to them personally. And I would look to those who stood up to David Miscavige the very first time he did something evil. Those are the courageous ones. Those are the people to admire. Those are the people we should be calling courageous. They had guts.