Martin Luther

Commenting on Scientology, Inside and Outside the Church

Archive for the month “June, 2013”

By Their Actions…

A short time ago, someone in a private email to me mentioned the HCOB “By Their Actions…”. I hadn’t read this in a long time and decided to find and read it again. It’s HCOB 28 May 1960. I’ll quote selected parts of it below:

By their actions you shall know them, whether bad or good, whether on another side or ours. …

The good can help. The bad will not or if they do, they “help” only to betray. …

Know your friends. It’s strange that those who argue with us against our goals and Scientology cannot conceive of honest help. Discuss help with them and you’ll find their tone and whether they are worth a lot as friends.

This is the test that you can use to separate the good from bad and then clear-eyed begin to make a world in which all life can live.

As always, I would encourage people to find and read the whole issue for themselves.

Individuals Versus Groups

It is sometimes stunning to me how much wisdom you can find in seldom-cited LRH references. These are HCOPLs, HCOBs and the like which hardly anyone has read, but which contain data which is actually amazingly useful across a broad spectrum.

I was thumbing through my OEC Vol 6 the other day and came across one of these: HCOPL 23 Nov 69 Individuals vs Groups. It’s in my old mid-70s OEC Volume 6. I would recommend it most particularly to those who believe that Scientology can be alloyed, allied or “integrated” into other groups or bodies of knowledge.

The wide survey done in accordance with LRH ED Int 14 of 1 Aug 68 Broad Public Questionnaire, the results summarized in LRH ED Int 37 of 23 Nov 69 Reform Mailing Results gives us two valuable data:

  1. DO NOT LECTURE OR DISSEM TO SOCIAL OR PUBLIC GROUPS. (The full list is in these 2 LRH EDs.)
  2. DISSEM TO THE INDIVIDUAL WITH PROBLEMS NOT THE GROUPS OR INDIVIDUAL WHO HAVE SOLUTIONS

Public and social groups, from governments to garden clubs, are organized around some agreed upon solution and were organized because of and to support some fixed solution such as an ideology or a quick buck or a dominance solution.

In such a case you are talking to and at an idea fixe. It fears anything that might shake its pet aberration.

Indeed, by addressing it directly as a group by a lecture or a mailing you can solidify the consistent antagonism it feels to anything different to its ideas.

Such groups are also a mutual protection society and their members are to a greater or lesser degree personally defensive but collectively agressive.

Such groups can usually be neglected in matters of dissemination.

In other words, while you can put out advertisements and should, actual dissemination is done individual by individual.

And here is another passage from that reference which is a virtual bundle of written dynamite. Consider the quote and then look at organizations like the NAACP or the U.S. government’s Department Of Education.

We also long ago learned this cynical axiom: “Groups tend to perpetuate the conditions which they are formed to combat”.

This HCOPL is three pages long, but worth looking up and studying. There is far more to it than I have quoted here.

What Is Scientology?

I’d like to take a good look and make a few distinctions about the things that make up Scientology. People should know these as separate components, and treat them as such.

The Technology

Foremost of the things that make up Scientology is the Technology. When I say that, I mean all the Technology– ethics, tech and admin. All of it is meant for application and is workable.

Almost all of the auditing technology was originated and researched by Ron. In some cases, it was originated by others or researched by others, though most of this occurred in the first decade of Scientology. All of it bears the imprimatur* of Ron. This was the guarantee that it was workable, and would be insisted upon by any Scientologist. Ron was the first auditor, and ultimately had decades of auditing, C/Sing and process development to aid in coming up with techniques which were workable.

In coming up with the auditing technology, Ron went well beyond simply auditing and C/Sing to discover the data. He did active research to map the whole track. Some of his research (e.g. OT III) was downright dangerous. But all of it was done in the name of making it possible for the broadest range of people to go from wog to OT and actually make gains every step of the way.

The ethics technology was originated by Ron. Some of it is based on older ideas. Some of it (like ethics conditions) are his creation entirely, based on observation and research on the subject. But again, all of it bears his imprimatur.

Admin tech is mostly Ron’s origination. Some parts of it are refinements of existing practice (such as managing by statistics; this was heavily refined and raised to an exacting practice by Ron). Some of it is obvious, based on Ron’s experience managing a global network of organizations. In researching this material, Ron had access to an enormous amount of raw data from people on the scene in Orgs. Of necessity, the administrative technology applied to the running of Orgs. But while some specifics might change if it were applied to something other than Orgs, the basic principles applied to all group activities. And naturally, all of it bears Ron’s imprimatur.

One thing became clear early on, and continued to be axiomatic from the time Ron first declared it so: The Technology was guaranteed to be workable only so long as it was executed without alteration. One might alter a process or vary a command and still have a workability, but there was no guarantee of that. Whereas exact application of the Technology had been shown in all cases to work. This included the Administrative Technology.

The Theory

The Theory upon which the Technology is based was primarily developed and researched by Ron, starting with the idea that life was first and foremost attempting to survive, the first principle derived in 1938. The Theory includes a great deal of material which makes up the bulk of Ron’s lectures. Items such as the ARC triangle, the KRC triangle, the Communications Formula, the Laws of Listing and Nulling, the various Axioms, the Factors, the Pre-Logics (Qs) and many more make up this broad body of knowledge. Some of this material grew out of the application of the Technology and some of it preceded and was used to develop the Technology.

One might apply the Technology without ever knowing the Theory. This might make someone a passable auditor, ethics officer or administrator. But the Theory is truly necessary to allow one to “think” with the Technology and apply it expertly.

Ron’s Observations

Ron was an active, perceptive and accurate observer. He made a great many observations about life and people in his 75 years. Many of these observations come out in his lectures and written works. This material wasn’t “discovered” or “developed” by Ron. It would be obvious to any observer of his calibre. But it should be noted that Ron had a unique perspective from which to observe. His life spanned many decades of spectacular change in society. It included first-hand familiarity with a great many professions, peoples and societies. And it encompassed his acquaintence with people from all walks of life, from the highest to the lowest. Ron was, first and foremost, even before he was a writer, an explorer.

It should also be understood that Ron was exceptionally widely read. He knew a considerable amount about a very wide variety of subjects, including history. Along with his mapping of the whole track and his research into the politics of this sector of the galaxy, his knowledge of Earth history was considerable.

Ron always maintained that people were free to disagree with him as regards his opinions about things. And some imagine that many of the things he said were opinions, when in fact they were observations. Of course, one is free to disagree with Ron’s observations as well. But it is better to reserve judgment in such cases, until such time as one can observe to the same extent and at the same level as Ron could.

Some of Ron’s “observations” were not observations so much as inescapable “conclusions” drawn from his observations. As such, they perhaps verge on opinion. But a conclusion drawn from accurate observation and born out in subsequent observation is far from a mere opinion. This type of conclusion is the basis for the scientific method. In developing Scientology, one of Ron’s first steps was to select the scientific method as a guiding principle in determining workability and truth.

Ron’s Opinions

When Ron said (echoing older philosophies), “What is true for you is true; what is untrue for you is not true”, he meant it most particularly as applied to his opinions about things. Of course, you could apply it to any aspect of Scientology. But the application of this principle to something like, say, the theory of correction lists would be a dangerous practice.

One of the reasons Ron made this statement was that the workability of Scientology Technology didn’t depend on your belief in anything in particular. So long as the Technology was applied exactly and properly, the result was invariant, regardless of what anyone believes. This is one of the greatest strengths of Scientology. You could be a Muslim, a Christian, a street vendor or the richest capitalist, and Scientology would still work.

To be sure, most of what Ron said was based either on his research or his observation. But there were times when he expressed bald opinions. You can agree or disagree. It makes no difference. But you’re advised to learn the difference between Ron’s opinions and Ron’s observations or Ron’s conclusions. Disagree with impunity with his opinions. Disagree with his conclusions and observations at your own risk. Disagree with the Tech at your peril.

The Religion

Scientology has a religious component to it. There are several reasons for this.

  • It deals, ultimately, with the spirit, something common to all religions
  • It affords the Church protection against the taxation (and thus control) of governments
  • It affords the practitioner complete freedom (in most countries) to practice it without hindrance
  • It prevents the medical profession and psychs from controlling and perverting it, something on which they spent a lot of effort and money over time
  • It keeps the government from dictating various internal details of Organizations. Particularly in the United States, the courts avoid scrutiny of religious practice as part of our constitution and common law

It can be readily observed that governments barely tolerate religion, and if given the chance will wipe it out. Religion divides the loyalties of a citizenry, and has been known to lead to the destruction of governments.

Because of Scientology’s being a religion, it is allowed to engage in other activities normally reserved for religion, such as weddings, funerals, baptisms and christenings. This may seem incidental, but they lend some bona fides to the Church of Scientology as a religion.

The Group

Lastly, Scientology is a group (Third Dynamic) activity. In Ron’s Journal 67, he asserted that, by actual test, an OT could not be effective alone. OT activity, to be effective, required a group. More broadly, action as a group is required to fulfill the aims of Scientology in any meaningful way.

But groups, to be effective, require organization of their various parts and members. They require various lines and terminals. They require various activities to occur in the interest of perpetuating the group and making it effective. The Administrative Technology of Scientology dictates all these aspects and the theory underlying them.

Contrary to popular opinion, the moral strictures of Scientology do not arise as a result of it being a religion. They arise as a result of Scientology being a third dynamic activity. Any group must have rules by which its members conduct themselves. These rules protect the group and the members, and make it possible for different spheres of influence within the group to merge seamlessly when they meet. The theory underlying these notions is the theory of games, detailed by Ron in his lectures.

Some reject the notion of rules of conduct, proclaiming such to be anathema to the exercise of one’s free will and self-determinism. It can usually be demonstrated that such people have significant unhandled overts and withholds on prior or current codes of conduct. The truth is that if one acts alone and lives in isolation, such codes are not necessary. But as soon as one invites others to participate in a game, rules become necessary. They are an essential part of any game, and are important in any third dynamic activity.

The dynamics do not exist in isolation. There is interplay among them and each influences the rest, just like the points on the ARC Triangle.

Conclusion

An understanding of the various components of Scientology is worthwhile, so one can treat each in the appropriate way. If you’ve ever had trouble separating out the various aspects of Scientology, hopefully the above helps in de-tangling them.

*imprimatur = sanction or approval.

Wogs

New and Non-Scientologists

Once a person embarks on a journey to improve his life (and those of his fellows) by studying Scientology, he sees the world differently than he did before. He sees the problems of the world in a different light. And as time progresses, he will likely come to see that he is not his body, and that his “life” as a being encompasses not just his current lifetime, but many before and many to come.

Since it happens gradually, he may not realize just how differently he sees things. But it should become apparent as he continues to study Scientology yet associate with people around him who are not Scientologists. Our student/PC may come to see himself as “superior” to his fellows in the non-Scientologist world. This isn’t unreasonable, since he’s probably gained abilities and insights they don’t have.

This feeling of “superiority” only really becomes a problem if he begins to treat his fellows poorly. Their situation, like his, has arisen over millions of lifetimes. It may take some work to get them up to the point where they are even able to consider there is more to know, more to see, more to experience. Meanwhile, they rightfully require his respect, compassion, and in short, his granting of beingness.

Failure to grant them beingness make him an enemy of his fellows. Whatever his position on the Bridge, it behooves him to grant beingness to his fellow humans, no matter how far down the scale of awarness they exist.

This is equally true between staff and public, between execs and staff, between Sea Org and non-Sea Org personnel, and between OTs and preclears. Superiority is not a license to be cruel and abusive. It is an opportunity to show others that one can grant beingness, regardless of how much distance exists between viewpoints.

Wogs

I got called on the carpet the other day for using the word “wog” in a comment to a post on someone else’s blog. In fact, the moderator of that blog edited out my use of the term.

I covered my use of this term briefly in my post Responsibilities of Leaders, but I expand on it here.

The origin of the term wog is unclear. In some circles, it is purported to be short for “Worthy Oriental Gentleman”. But this, too, is disputed.

“Wog” came to be a pejorative used primarily by the British to describe conquered or subjugated Asians, most particularly those of India when it was ruled by the British. In the tech dictionary, the two definitions are both from the Briefing Course, and mark it as a derogatory term. In its everyday, slang use among Scientologists, it simply came to mean non-Scientologists, sometimes meant derogatorally, sometimes not, depending on context.

A few rabble-rousers in the Independent field have made noise about the use of this term, and gotten some not-quite-bright others to go along with them. We have a similar example of this among upper and middle class caucasians arguing against Native American names being used in connection with sports teams (example: the Atlanta Braves). Native Americans seem curiously silent on this issue.

This is an example of “political correctness”. You’ve probably heard the term. It is an attempt by psychs to control thought by controlling speech.

“Political correctness” has several cousins. One is “propaganda by redefinition of words”. The George Orwell book 1984 calls this “Newspeak”. In the real world, an example is the Russian language. It is peppered with terms redefined for propaganda purposes. (I know this because I studied Russian in college. Not recommended.) There is a brilliant LRH reference on the subject, HCOPL 5 October 1971 PR Series 12 Propaganda By Redefinition Of Words. A study of this issue is highly recommended. Among other things, it details how psychology came to intertwine itself with German philosophers and was used as a tool to encourage Germany to war on its neighbors.

Political correctness was picked up by the communist party and has been used for decades as a way to “soften up” the West in preparation for the eventual takeover of communism.

Here’s another example: Did you know that some newer editions of Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn have the word “nigger” edited out of them? Despite the fact that this was part of the actual language in common use at the time these books were written. Perhaps if we never see this word in these books, we’ll imagine that their protagonists weren’t uneducated poor children of the South in the 1800s. Apparently, rewriting (lying or alter-ising) history is always better than confronting what actually happened.

In the name of political correctness, “garbage man” is replaced by “sanitation engineer”. (I’ve been a garbage man. I didn’t mind being called one. I picked up people’s garbage, after all.) “Retarded” is replaced by “developmentally disadvantaged”. “Christmas” is replaced by “Winter Holiday”. While I wasn’t looking, “oriential” somehow became offensive, and must now be replaced by “asian”, Lord knows why.

Perhaps we should replace “short” with “vertically challenged”. After all, David Miscavige’s “self-esteem” (another psych term) is something I know we’re all concerned about.

(By the way, I’m not “follically challenged”. I’m “balding”. Happens to some guys when they get older. Good thing I’m not a body.)

Of course, there’s no way to win on this; after a new term is accepted as a replacement, it too becomes offensive and must be replaced.

One of psychology’s assertions with regard to political correctness is that people can be permanently damaged by the mere utterance of words by others. Of course, as Scientologists, we know this to be false, unless the words are accompanied by pain and unconsciousness. (Reference: Dianetics The Modern Science Of Mental Health.)

When words become objects or things to a person, realize you’re dealing with someone exceptionally low on the Tone Scale. (I’ve word cleared people like this; it’s not fun.)

Then there are those, like the person who complained about my use of the word “wog”, whose sole purpose (by survey of his other writings) is simply to enturbulate. If misplaced (and false) righteous indignation allows him to get away with his enturbulating, that’s the tactic he will use.

Perhaps we should resolve not to let agents provocateurs and psychologists dictate our actions.

Words only have the power you give them.

Justice

As a staff member at my first Org, my best friend was the Treasury Secretary, whom we’ll call “Carl”. Carl was a gentle soul with a sunny outlook and an ironic sense of humor. His theta perceptics were out the roof, far better than anyone else I knew at the time. There was a reason for that– Carl was legally blind. He was the kind of guy who had to get about six inches from anything on paper to read it.

Not that it matters, but just to illustrate his sense of humor, here’s a story of a real event that happened.

Our Org was dirt poor. We got anywhere between $5 and $20 a week from working there. The FP (Financial Planning) was so anemic that the execs on the FP Committee wouldn’t even okay toilet paper for the restrooms. Each week, after the FP Committee was done with their work, they issued a write-up of the results of the Org’s financial planning. This was the FPED (Financial Planning Executive Directive). It would sometimes be cut into mimeo stencils (when we could afford it) and mimeo’d for staff.

I was working in Treasury one day, Carl sitting at one desk poring over figures, and me at another, working on the audits. At some point, a public person came into Treasury looking for toilet paper for the restroom. If the Org had any it would have been here in Treasury. But of course, we didn’t have any. So this public person asked why we didn’t have any toilet paper. Carl responded that the FP Committee hadn’t approved its purchase. The public person, obviously perturbed, asked what he was supposed to use to wipe his butt with. Carl’s response?

“Use the FPED.”

And with that, I burst out laughing for the next five minutes. My laughter was contagious, because Carl then did the same.

That was classic Carl.

Carl wasn’t happy in Treasury. He wanted to be an auditor. When he signed on for staff, he was promised a position in the TTC (Tech Training Corps– full time auditor training). I don’t know who promised him that, because Carl couldn’t even read auditing worksheets unless he bent over them with a magnifying glass. But somehow he’d gotten stuck in Treasury and selected to be the Treasury Secretary. Fortunately for us, even though Carl couldn’t see well, he was fastidious enough to keep the Treasury records in good order.

Carl had been Treas Sec for a number of years, and over time became more and more vocal about not wanting to be on the post. Treasury was the wrong place for him. He wanted to be Estates Manager, where he could be outside more, and where he could maintain and repair the MEST of the Org. He was good at that sort of thing. Of course the Org’s answer to Carl was for him to recruit a replacement. And of course, we all know how difficult that can be. Especially for a guy who’s darn near blind and stuck in an office 8-12 hours a day.

But Carl’s job at the moment was to collect from freeloaders and pay bills (at the direction of the FP Committee). He was good at paying the bills, but not so good at collecting from freeloaders. (Not particularly to defend Carl, but anyone who’s ever had that job knows it’s very hard to collect from freeloaders.)

At some point, the powers that be in the Org had enough of Carl’s complaining. The Ethics Officer finally called for a Comm Ev (Committee of Evidence) to look into Carl not doing his job as Treas Sec.

As you can imagine, we didn’t have a lot of staff. So when it came time to populate the Comm Ev, I was one of the ones called upon to serve on it. The list of charges against Carl (the “Bill of Particulars”) were, as they always are, numerous and severe.

Going into it, I realized several things. I’d been on the receiving end of a hair-raising Comm Ev myself, over a year before. I’d been accused of everything bad you can imagine in Scientology, virtually none of it actually true. In the end, I was found guilty by the Committee of most of the charges. Fortunately, the IJC (International Justice Chief), whose job it was to review these things, disagreed. He “vacated” the Findings and Recommendations, stating that there was insufficient evidence for any of the charges. But the whole thing left me with one purpose: to ensure that any such justice actions I was ever involved with didn’t degenerate into witch hunts.

At the same time, I realized that the Org was counting on me to do my job as a member of the Committee. I had to put aside my friendship for Carl and do my job, for the good of the Org.

Another point was that, ultimately, Carl wanted off the post of Treasury Secretary, something it was hard not to know in an Org as small as ours. If we as a Committee of Evidence ordered that he be removed from his post, Carl in effect won. The Committee could have been obstinate and kept him on his post, just to keep him from getting his way. But if the Committee kept him on post, it should only be because that was best for the org, not to serve as a group make-wrong against him.

In any case, the Committee did its job and submitted its recommendations to IJC for approval. They were accepted. Carl was removed from post and assigned a lower condition to work out of.

Eventually, I ended up as Treasury Secretary, Carl ended up happily being the Estates Manager, and life went on as usual. The experience didn’t affect our friendship. Carl knew what I was up against, and was fair minded enough to understand all the factors involved.

Ron has said that justice couldn’t be trusted in the hands of Man, and yet he had no choice but to set up a means for justice within Scientology. It would then be up to us not to act like run-of-the-mill humanoids, but to actually use that system properly and fairly.

Naturally, the current Church has perverted its justice mechanism to be a tool for whatever petty vengeance and imagined disloyalty is popular at any given time.

And even before the rise of Miscavige, justice was often misused, as I detailed above with the Comm Ev on me. My example of Carl is written to show that group justice can be properly and fairly administered.

Justice is a tool. By itself, it has no effect on anything, except perhaps to take up space on a bookshelf as a set of policies and procedures. It must be used to take on a positive or negative character. That’s where humans come in. We make justice good or bad by the way we use it.

If you’ve been a victim of improper group justice at the hands of the current Church, realize first that the problem was not that justice existed and was used. The problem is that it was used improperly by a group of people for whom justice is a tool to get even or remove those who disagree with the way things are. If necessary, get some RPEC (Repair of Past Ethics Conditions).

Justice exists as a means to help us get a show on the road. No more and no less.

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