Claire Headley is taking us on our journey to train as Scientologists. She and her husband Marc were Sea Org workers who escaped from Scientology’s International Base in 2005. She spent years working with Scientology’s “tech,” and was trusted to oversee the auditing of Tom Cruise. Go here to see the first part in this series.
Claire, last time you got us through Method One Word Clearing. And now we’re moving on to something really fascinating — the PTS/SP course?
CLAIRE: That’s right. I did PTS/SP course in 1989 at the Beverly Hills mission.
This is where you get down deep and personal with PTS/SP Tech — How to “Confront and Shatter Suppression” as it is heralded in the world of Scientology.
It includes an in-depth study of the Tone Scale, round four on Training Routines, and study of the book Science of Survival.
Then there’s Tone Scale drills, obnosis drills, and numerous other drills on how to deal with the “dangerous environment” — in other words, the world we live in.
The cost of this one runs about $1,500.
And as a side note, this course has been revised and changed more than any other course I know of in Scientology. It was redone completely at least 4 times in the time I worked at the Hemet base.
THE BUNKER: Once again, there’s a lot going on in this course. But let’s focus on confronting and shattering suppression. Please define PTS and SP, how you are trained to recognize people who are PTS or SP, and what you’re supposed to do about it.
CLAIRE: PTS is short for “Potential Trouble Source.” Scientology has so many acronyms, and in my experience growing up in Scientology, they help isolate you from the real world.
A Potential Trouble Source is quite literally a person who is a potential source of trouble. Because they will “roller coaster,” on some days they’ll be fine and the next they will crash, get sick, or be a source of problems. So it’s a negative term. A person who is PTS is that way because he or she is connected to a Suppressive Person, an SP. The PTS person needs to find the SP in their lives, and then “handle or disconnect.”
THE BUNKER: So, for example, if a Scientologist comes down with a cold, he’s conditioned to believe that he has become a Potential Trouble Source, and his cold is happening because he has a Suppressive Person influencing his life. So he has to determine who that person is, and then “handle” that person — get the SP to stop being suppressive — or just cut off all ties from the SP, “disconnect.”
CLAIRE: PTS/SP tech is also where you learn of “good roads and fair weather” and “don’t create antagonism,” both of which are key strategies a Scientologist uses to deal with the outside world.
THE BUNKER: Can you explain that?
CLAIRE: Good Roads and Fair Weather is a “handling” a Scientologist uses to deal with an antagonistic person. The idea is, quite literally, that you discuss only the roads and the weather.
For example, if you were someone in my life who was antagonistic, I would get drilled on my conversations with you. And my entire goal would be to talk about very social topics and not touchy subjects or antagonism — like how the roads are and how the weather is fair.
Another part of this handling would be to find the “Why” for the antagonism. In Scientology, if you’re PTS, you are not allowed to do any auditing or training, other than as part of handling your PTSness. The theory being that a PTS person will roller coaster and lose their gains.
And it’s a crime to be PTS and not report it.
There are also three types of PTSness.
Type I is when you are actively connected to someone who is antagonistic to Scientology, and who is invalidating you or your gains.
Type II is someone who is roller coastering, but who isn’t sure who they are PTS to, won’t disconnect, or who continues to roller coaster. To handle this, you would receive the PTS Rundown and the Suppressed Person Rundown.
Type III are those who are “mostly in institutions.” This is the person who thinks he’s surrounded by SPs, including ghosts and demons. The handling for this is remove them from the environment, give them rest and quiet, and often the Introspection Rundown, followed by PTS/SP auditing listed above.
This is the handling that was done on Lisa McPherson, for example.
THE BUNKER: And that’s why Scientologists describe someone who’s really having a breakdown as going “Type III.” Claire, you described earlier what a Potential Trouble Source is, but you kind of skipped over Suppressive Person. Can you tell us more about what characterizes an SP?
CLAIRE: An SP is an antisocial personality, and has many attributes. I’ll try to summarize some of them…
An SP speaks in broad generalities. “They say…” for example. An SP spreads bad news and gossip, and any message he is asked to relay he’ll twist it negatively. An SP makes trouble for the people around him, and can cripple his friends or even drive them into mental institutions. An SP always blames the wrong people for what goes wrong. He can’t complete a project. An SP never accepts responsibility for things that go wrong, and will not lift a finger to help others.
THE BUNKER: So here’s the big question, just how do you “confront and shatter” suppression?
CLAIRE: Honestly I’ve found myself to be much more skilled at confronting and shattering suppression since leaving Scientology. But I think that’s only because I recovered my free will and my willingness to understand other views.
In Scientology, “confronting and shattering” suppression is mainly accomplished through Training Routines (which teach you “to be able to deal with any communication situation, no matter how tough”).
I think there is truth in the fact that improving one’s communication skills leads you to better success with human interaction. I just think that there are other more effective means of improving your skills. But that’s just me.
Miscavige took PTS/SP tech to a new level, since he declared all the top management executives to be Suppressive Persons. In fact, the whole point of “The Hole” was to cut off all contact from the outside world, a new and twisted form of disconnection.
One of his favorite sayings to management executives was that you tell an SP “No!”
THE BUNKER: No? As in, “No slop for you!” Hm. Well, perhaps some of the ex-church members in our audience could share with us some of their tales of shattering suppression. We’d love to hear them.
COST THIS WEEK: $1,500
COST SO FAR: $5,825
Church Responds to California Supremes — Now We Wait for the Court’s Move
Last night, we got a copy of Scientology’s informal response to Laura DeCrescenzo’s answer to the church’s petition to the California Supreme Court. It’s mostly a restating of what the church had said before, but we thought readers would want to see it.
Once again, the church is arguing that California’s clergy-penitent law is unconstitutional because it discriminates against Scientology’s practice of allowing “ministers” to share confidential material that parishioners divulge in auditing sessions. In DeCrescenzo’s lawsuit, she is suing over the way she was treated as a “Sea Org” worker, including her claim that she was forced to have an abortion by a church that wanted her to keep working 100-hour weeks. She wants the contents of hundreds of her “pc folders” which were compiled as she went through interrogations over her career in the church. But the church insists that although 259 different employees compiled and reviewed her confessional material, it should be privileged information — even though it’s the penitent herself, Laura, who wants to have them turned over.
And, although DeCrescenzo has said that these interrogations were generally quizzing her about her loyalty to the group and her performance on the job, church attorney Bert Deixler refers to the material as “communications of deep religious significance concerning the spiritual counseling of a parishioner.”
Now that the church has made its petition, Laura has responded, and Deixler has made this informal answer, it’s now up the state supreme court to decide if it wants to put a stay on Laura’s lawsuit and consider the constitutionality of the state’s priest-penitent law. We’ll be watching.
Photos In Portland Not Doctored?
The Washington Times yesterday reported that the Church of Scientology denies that it doctored photos from its Portland Ideal Org opening. We compared Scientology’s photo of the crowd (which it estimated at 2,500) against photos taken by our correspondents (who said the crowd was more like 450 to 750 people) and pointed out that an entire row of shrubs had somehow been erased and there were people seemingly standing in a street that was actually empty. The church has been caught manipulating crowd shots in the past to inflate attendance at its events. Some of our own commenters pointed out that a very wide angle lens in the right position might create the effect in Scientology’s image from Portland. We’ll be interested to see further analysis of the image by experts.
Posted by Tony Ortega on May 14, 2013 at 07:00
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