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Jon Atack: How to get a convinced Scientologist on the road to recovery

Jon_AtackJon Atack is the author of A Piece of Blue Sky, one of the very best books on L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. He has a new edition of the book for sale, and for more than a year on Saturdays he helped us sift through the legends, myths, and contested facts about Scientology that tend to get hashed and rehashed in books, articles, and especially on the Internet. He was kind enough to send us a new post.

Jon has really come through for us again, this time laying out a complete program for the frustrated friend or family member who wants to get a Scientologist to begin challenging their indoctrination. Jon, tell us how it works.

JON: I have several times been asked how to approach a convinced cult member. I hesitate, because a list of resources may encourage the cult to prepare an index of prohibited texts. Still, here it is.

The first aspect of intervention is to present parallel material. Never go head on. Sometimes it takes months, but the goal is to encourage critical thinking, so that the individual will begin to look for the way out. By the time I quit intervention counseling, no one who had spoken to me in the previous five years returned to the cult.

I had only a day to achieve this effect, but a spouse, relative or close friend has as much time as necessary — as long as they avoid criticizing the cult with the attendant risk of being shunned. I used to start with Captive Minds: Hypnosis and Beyond, but it is possible to take a more gradual approach. (I had no time to play with!)

There are many movies and documentaries that show elements of the techniques of exploitative persuasion. At the top of my list are Leap of Faith, with Steve Martin, which is based on the memoir of a bogus faith healer, and Life of Brian, because it actually does touch on many aspects of cult involvement but makes light of them. A serious cult member may not take to the absurdist approach, however (my kids roar with laughter). The Wave is very good and, of course, books such as Nineteen Eighty-Four and Brave New World (not the movie of either, however). THX 1138 — George Lucas’s first movie –- is good, too. Terry Gilliam’s dystopian Brazil makes some of the points.

I would show Captive Minds: Hypnosis and Beyond (1983, directed by Pierre Lasry) section by section and encourage the person watching to talk about what they are seeing and offer examples from their own experience. Typically, Scientologists will think that nothing in the film has any bearing on them. This does not matter, what does matter is that critical thinking is fundamentally the ability to articulate ideas, and just talking about something in a friendly environment can kick start the process.

After Captive Minds — and plenty of discussion — I showed a documentary about the Rajneeshis and the fiasco of Big Muddy — Rajneesh: My Dance is Complete. Again, stop the film along the way and encourage discussion of simple points. You never make any comparison with Scientology, and if the person does you simply nod (the gentlest affirmation). Scientologists will find nothing in common, yet again. It is important to allow plenty of time –- I only had a day, because the member would report their encounter with me, if I’d failed to take them all the way.

A recent documentary about the Jehovah’s Witnesses — Truth be Told — is very good, as is Meet the Mormons. Scientologists are happy to laugh at such cultic behavior. There is never any need to point out that identical behaviors exist in Scientology. They will work that out, eventually. By the way, this is the opposite of hypnosis, in that it is all presented analytically and leaves the person to sort it out rationally. Allow for plenty of time. There must never be any rush.

Material about the Moonies, Mark Twain on Christian Science (hilarious as ever), just about anything about cults, is grist to the mill. Such material can even be introduced by saying “People call Scientology a cult, but this is what a cult really is.”

There are some fine texts on fanaticism and the cults of the past. Two years before I left, I read Norman Cohn’s seminal Pursuit of the Millennium, about the end of the world groups at the time of the Crusades, and his Europe’s Inner Demons, about the mass murder of “witches,” and they influenced my decision to leave.

Aldous Huxley’s Devils of Loudun is excellent, and the film The Devils, which is based upon it, is very well made (with beautiful sets by Derek Jarman, and a fine performance by Oliver Reed. One of Ken Russell’s best films). Miller’s Crucible was also turned into a fine film.

Anything at all about fanaticism is useful, because it can tickle the critical faculties. Hannah Arendt’s The Origins of Totalitarianism, is a classic. But if something has entertainment value, it will be easier to digest, though there are still a few of us who like to read a weighty tome. Such classics as To Kill a Mockingbird are also relevant, as they show fanatical behavior. The movie is good, too, as are such classics as Fonda in Twelve Angry Men or Tracy in Inherit the Wind.

You sadly have to avoid anything by a psychologist or psychiatrist, because the phobia induction is so profound. I’d sneak William James’s fine Varieties of Religious Experience under the wire, if possible.

Any book recommended by Hubbard is valuable. Show the person where Hub recommends it and then give them the text. This includes Hypnotism Comes of Age by Wolfe and Rosenthal.

Crowley’sMagick in Theory and Practice was originally published with Crowley’s “magical” name, the Master Therion, on the cover, and Hubbard refers to it by that title in PDC lecture 18. Play the PDC lecture about Crowley first, if you can, to introduce this awful book.

There are further references to Crowley in PDC 35 and 40 (see also Professional Auditors Bulletin no.110, 15 April 1957). My own Hubbard and the Occult has this passage: “Hubbard had a very positive regard for Crowley, calling his work “fascinating” [PDC 18] and recommending one of his books to Scientologists. Having referred to Crowley as “The Beast 666,” Hubbard said that he had “picked a level of religious worship which is very interesting” [PDC 35]. He also made it clear that he had read the fundamental text of the Crowley teaching, The Book of the Law [PDC 40].”

The Book of the Law is at least brief, and highly relevant, given Hubbard’s statement that Crowley was his “very good friend” (PDC 18). My Possible Origins for Dianetics and Scientology, shows that Crowley’s Magick in Theory and Practice is the most important single source for Scientology. But be very careful — allow the believer to work this out. Almost anything by or about Crowley is disturbing, given Hubbard’s accolades. His autobiography, The Diary of a Drug Fiend, sums it up in the title. I spoke with Crowley’s literary executor, John Symonds (he loathed Crowley), and his biography of Crowley shows why Hubbard fantasised about a friendship with the “wickedest man in the world.”

William Bolitho’s 12 Against the Gods — which Hubbard called his favorite book in PDC lecture 16 (which is where Vaughan Young got the idea from for his answers to the interview “with Hubbard” — Rocky Mountain News, 20 February 1983. Members are led to believe that this is a genuine interview with Hubbard. It says there that the “introduction is particularly good”). Cagliostro is especially significant in this book. And what Scientologist wouldn’t want to read Hubbard’s favorite book?

Then there are the intelligence books in the B-1 “information” hat pack — this pack was reissued in 1990. The only change to the 800 pages being the title page, where “OSA” replaces “GO.” These include Sefton Delmar’s Black Boomerang, Christopher Felix’s The Spy and His Masters and Reiss’s Total Espionage. All are revealing. It is possible to follow this up with extracts from the B-1 pack — it is after all “scripture” — Hubbard’s Conference for the Investigators for instance.

No one has done better work than Derren Brown. I introduced my friend Steve Hassan to his work about 20 years back and he uses clips in his own interventions. Brown’s debunking of spiritual matters should be carefully handled — I’d avoid Fear and Faith for a while — but the Manchurian Candidate from Experiments, Messiah, and the Heist are all excellent. Again, encourage discussion and avoid comparison with Scientology.

Comparable religious material is also important. As Hubbard claimed to base his ideas on Buddhism, the Vedas and the Tao Te Ching (see the Phoenix Lectures, chapter one) these can be introduced (though probably not my translation of the Tao! Gia Fu Feng is very good and handsomely illustrated. D C Lau is a straightforward version). Benjamin Hoff’s Tao of Pooh is a light-hearted examination of the philosophy of Lao Tze. Chuang Tze’s “essential chapters” (the first seven chapters of the Chuang Tze) are also quite lovely.

Any expansion of ideas is useful in generating critical thinking, so texts on karma, reincarnation, and the like are valuable. It does show that Hubbard’s claim to have made the only contributions to the fields of the mind and spirit in the last 50,000 years are simply braggadocio.

This isn’t about teaching dogma, so it doesn’t matter if the ideas expressed seem silly to you. Just that they expand the horizons of the cult member. You might be able to get away with Brian Ingliss’s Trance: A Natural History of Altered States of Mind, an interesting history of hypnosis, because he avoids psychology and has a supernaturalist bent that will appeal to the Scientologist (though it seems credulous to me).

The cult uses Houston Smith on the Minister’s Course and I’d add Joe Campbell’s Power of Myth, just to give a better grounding in religious ideas. The exclusivity of Scientology is challenged by these materials. For the more academically inclined, Mircia Eliade’s History of Religion (3 volumes), Campbell’s Masks of God (in 4 volumes), Cohen and Phipps’ Common Experience and Aldous Huxley’s Perennial Philosophy are all good — the last two being shorter and easier.

Hoffer’s True Believer is very good — and short — along with the movie The Inner Circle (Vaughan Young told me that this paralleled his Sea Org experience, exactly — it’s about Stalin’s personal projectionist who maintained his devotion to the dictator as his master casually murdered millions).

The process of paralleling continues until the person begins to make comparisons with Scientology. This may take an hour or a year.

The direction of attention is important. I learned this from Idries Shah — whose books are also interesting (The Sufis is positively mind blowing, and lovely for anyone captive in magical thinking, though it won’t do anything to help them escape from it!). A counselor used the method on a family where the mother constantly talked about her suicidal inclinations. He simply said to ignore anything negative that she said, as if nothing had been said at all. Within two weeks of her family doing this, she stopped talking about suicide. Hubbard has a version of this in his “good roads, fair weather” approach to “PTSness.” So, encourage all sensible statements and simply fail to acknowledge anything cultic and negative.

Alongside this, you should reach into the person’s pre-cult life to reaffirm the pre-cult identity. Ask about the believer’s past and encourage them to talk extensively, especially about the peak experiences and good times. Dig out old photos. Get in touch with old friends and family. Keep Scientology off the subject list, unless it is mentioned. Moving back before the cult identity was cloned can be scary, because you may see the person visibly switching from the glitter-eyed hypnotic pallor to a pink-skinned true cheerfulness, as the cult-cloned identity shifts.

Introduce non-cult activities. For every hour spent on thinking, there should be an hour spent on physical activity (and, yes, I know Problems of Work says this, too). Go swimming, bowling, cycling. Watch movies, eat out. Spend as much time as possible with non-Scientologists and encourage conversation about their beliefs.

After a while, it will be possible to introduce The Shrinking World of L Ron Hubbard (“Hey, I found this weird thing on the Internet, where Ron was interviewed back in 1968”). This always proved to be a case cracker in my work. Hubbard’s teeth are evidently rotten. He blinks constantly (out TR0) and he contradicts himself — he’s had two wives, but “no second wife,” and the eager “yes” to his followers believing in reincarnation after his own reluctance to answer the question. After that it’s all downhill — Singer’s Cults in Our Midst and Hassan’s Combatting Cult Mind Control leading to Blue Sky and Bare Faced Messiah. Then Cialdini’s Influence and Aranson and Pratkanis’s Age of Propaganda.

I’m sure that my astute readership will have much to add to this list. Remember, as Hubbard said, to “keep the analyzer whirring.”

 
——————–

Posted by Tony Ortega on December 6, 2014 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to tonyo94@gmail.com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS (We read Scientology’s founding text) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25

UP THE BRIDGE (Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN (Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING (Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

 

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  • (I did post this last night, due to the remembrances for Lisa McPherson on December 5th and all the others lost being posted. As I said, I’d post it again this morning, for those who might have missed it.) Continuing my Happy Holidays to the Bunker, this is the 4th of my redone Christmas songs. I’ve made a lyric video for it. i-Betty had generously offered to sing the lyrics for the video, but we had some technical difficulties there. But with just the beautiful orchestra music, following along with the words in the video, you can add your own vocals, if you wish. I appreciate everyone who helped the other night when I asked where to find names of people who have died due to scientology (or their fronts). Here is my redone Silent Night (video below lyrics).

    Evil Sci, Deadly Sci
    Loved ones dead, without goodbye
    Sons, daughters, Mother’s miss their child
    The loss of them is to be reviled
    May they rest in peace
    May they rest in peace

    Evil Sci, Deadly Sci
    Cares not for those who die
    Many ensure they’re not forgotten
    And save others from the same fate
    Their loss is not in vain
    Their loss is not in vain

    Evil Sci, Deadly Sci
    Hear the heartbroken cries
    No more shall die at their evil hands
    Pain of loss too hard to withstand
    Gone but not forgotten
    Gone but not forgotten

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5r3R7ietsRs

    • Lurkness

      Very powerful and a wonderful tribute. Thank you for all your work on this labor of love and remembrance.

      • joan nieman

        Melancholy and profound. A beautiful and sad tribute to people who we hold the candle for. I lit my own little candle today. Absolutely lovely Tia. Thank you.

    • Stacy

      Very powerful, Miss Tia. Heartbreaking. Thanks again for your wonderful efforts.

    • shasha40

      You’re supposed to make me laugh , not cry ! Lol, Thank you ,Mrs Tia and the Bunker elves that helped ! 🙂

      • Well, there’s also a very sad side here, gotta cover all of it. Hopefully tomorrow you will laugh.

        • shasha40

          Ain’t that the truth , which is why your songs are so , refreshing ! Scientology sucks big chocolate salty balls !!!

          • i should have included issac hayes! they killed chef! those bashards! [misspelling to appease disqus]

            • shasha40

              Calm down, Cartman ! I just automatically saw , bast@rds ! hee hee

    • EnthralledObserver

      Beautiful, and a fantastic tribute and reminder… nice job, Miss Tia! 🙂

    • NOLAGirl

      So good. I am glad you posted it twice. I’ve already heard it and it STILL makes me cry. 🙂

      (((((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))))))))

    • Kittery

      Powerful. Beautiful. Thank you, Miss Tia. Now I have to go dry my face. Don’t know how it got all wet.

      • Sometimes there’s indoor rain storms.

        • Kittery

          That must have been it. 😉

    • ScientologyDoesNotExist

      Thanks for all your hard efforts, MissTia. Appreciate a tribute. It reminded me that aA full requiem would take up most of an hour to include them all – and that is all that we know about.

      • It very well might take over an hour 🙁

    • i-Betty

      Try singing those words without your bottom lip wobbling. I’m so proud of Tia for pulling this together, and for the special touches, like synchronising the line “Mothers miss their child” with Alexander Jentzsch’s name in honour of Karen. A beautiful labour of love.

      • I couldn’t even make it through the first verse.

    • Still_On_Your_Side

      Very moving. So many names…..

    • Cosmo Pidgeon

      So many names and very touching…

    • thetastic

      Oh, Miss Tia. Heartbreaking and beautiful. Thank you.

  • 1subgenius

    Mark Twain on Christian Science is available free here:

    http://www.gutenberg.org/files/3187/3187-h/3187-h.htm

    • Thank you.

      • 1subgenius

        You’re welcome.
        Oh, and you can download it as an ebook here, too:

        http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/3187

        • Even better.

          • 1subgenius

            The two people I would most like to have known: Mark Twain and Ben Franklin.
            I am savoring Mark Twain’s autobiography right now. He stipulated that it was not to be published for 100 years after his death. How, otherwise, could one be honest, knowing your subjects would read it?
            Even the process and difficulties of writing an autobiography are explored.
            Anyone ever try to write one? Oh my, is it hard.
            To remember, to not edit, to face the truth about yourself.
            What a life he led. Just bailing out U.S. Grant for one segment.
            Life on the Mississippi. I can relate. I was marooned and nearly drowned at the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi, at Cairo. Good times.

            • We need to hang out some day, have some beers and shish kabobs.

            • 1subgenius

              I wanna be there in that number.

            • ScientologyDoesNotExist

              Saint Dodo? Who knew? And agree (hey, bookmark this moment) on Mark Twain eleventy billion. Still my favorite and no one yet showing up to even come close.

            • It’s like you guys talk in Morse code. Sorry. I still learn English, after all these years.

            • ScientologyDoesNotExist

              Occupational hazard: special language. 1sub: “I wanna be there in that number.” Song: When the Saints Go Marching In. My hubby and I speak in song titles often.

            • Stacy

              Fascinating. Added to my list of biographies to read.

              There are so many historic personages I’d love to meet. I couldn’t possibly narrow it down to just 2.

            • 1subgenius

              I should have said, “If I could only know two….”

            • Stacy

              I’m still trying to narrow down my list. If I could only meet two, Nikola Tesla would definitely be one. I just can’t decide on the other.

            • April

              I freakin love Mark Twain. His humor, wit, intelligence, personality, and talent are all one incredible package. My other pick would be Teddy Roosevelt.

            • He had that stipulation on his autobiography because his wife Livy, his good friend Rev. Joe Twitchell, and daughter Clara all at various times gave him grief over some of his ideas, like using Satan the archangel as the narrator in what ended up becoming Letters from the Earth long after his death. He didn’t want to rock the boat with family because they had to live with his shadow, you know? Also, Albert Paine did a pretty darn good job on his authorized biography (I have the four volume set) and it didn’t have stuff as controversial. (Came out in 1912 right after Clemens’ death). And he didn’t bail Grant out so much – it was pretty mutual. That book sold an extraordinary numbers of copies for its time, a huge hit for Twain’s publishing company. It worked out very well for them both and gave Grant something to leave his family (he died very soon after finishing the book).

        • Alanzo

          Youtube search for Captive Minds Hypnosis and beyond:

          https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=captive+minds+hypnosis+and+beyond

          • Baby

            Oh Yay Alanzo.. I will have a busy night watching your links..Woo Hoo.. Thank you sweetie.. xo

        • Alanzo

          Youtube for Leap of Faith with Steve Martin

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yq5csaHc_GE&list=PLAB71C36466B5D487

        • Alanzo

          The Wave Home Page!

          http://www.thewavehome.com/

        • Alanzo

          Jehovah’s Witnesses: Truth Be Told

          http://buy.hereliesthetruth.com/#about

    • Know what’s hilarious? Recently Val Kilmer has been playing Mark Twain onstage. Kilmer’s a Christian Scientist.

      • 1subgenius

        Un-flippin-believable.
        Both that he’s one, and that he’s playing Twain who had no love for them.
        Can he be unaware? I don’t see how it’s possible.

        • Prepare to be stranged! http://twaineddyfilm.com/story.html

          • 1subgenius

            Amazing, thanks.
            At least he’s not intentionally uninformed, like members of a certain other cult.
            BTW, I just got back from my weekly trike ride to the local farmer’s market, and there is a CS joint (“reading room”?) on the way. I always glance to see what’s up.
            I once saw two elderly ladies going in. That’s it. Ever. Even on Sundays.

            • Oh, that’s the Thetans for Geezers Club.

            • joan nieman

              They were probably going into see if there was free coffee and doughnuts.

          • 1subgenius

            I am totally intrigued.
            I can’t get it to load, but I’m going to keep trying.
            Consider me stranged.

            • Just search for Val Kilmer + Mary Baker Eddy or Val Kilmer Twain Show.

            • 1subgenius

              Yeah, I’m there, I just can’t get the video to load.
              I don’t know if it’s the film, or his stage act, or what.
              I’d like to see the film.

      • Robert Eckert

        Fun fact: Hal Holbrook played Mark Twain longer than Samuel Clemens did.

        • Saw him do it twice. I approved; the accent was just about right but the cadence was a wee bit fast.

          • Robert Eckert

            He was from my high school (a military academy in Indiana) and performed for the kids a couple times.

            • Here’s Bill Gillette’s talk about it which is highly entertainin… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqHPN4lW6tI

            • Robert Eckert

              Twain wrote a piece called “The Frog Jumping Celebrated from the County from Calaveras” in which he explored why “The Jumping Frog of Calaveras” didn’t sell well in France and concluded that it was a problem with the language: he translated the French version back to show the readers the problem. “I ain’t see any points about this frog any better’n any other frog” -> Je ne vois pas que cette grenouille ait rien de mieux qu’aucune grenouille -> “I no see not that this frog have nothing of better than each frog.”

            • The French can usually screw up anything except wine, cheese, women, and screwing $cientology.

  • Got your book today delivered from Amazon, Jon. Thank you so much for writing it!
    And for keeping writing here, on Tony’s blog. I always learn something from you.
    True public service.

    • sookiesookie

      What Dodo said, Jon! And my copy came over Thanksgiving vacation — it’s a fascinating account, and I’m really savoring it.

      • Jon Atack

        Cool. Please post a review at Amazon.

    • Jon Atack

      Thanks. Enjoy and then put a copy in all your friends’ Christmas stockings. A being is only as big as he can communicate, after all.

      • Haha! The irony. Working on it. Cheers, good sir.

  • Pierrot

    *** RED X +–+ RED X +–+RED X +–+ RED X *** Saturday the 6th of December
    Good morning everybody,
    Due to electricity load shedding in good old SAfrica I did not have access to the internet.
    Yesterday’s stats is 68 new or refreshed ads bringing our Last 4 Days DOWN from 383 to 342 and the 7 days Regional List about LEVEL at 601

    James (JJ) has been busy in Boston, some of their ads still have the Beacon st address, & JJ is giving properity courses”, so I guess that we do not have to worry about his finances.

    RedX write up : https://whyweprotest.net/threads/taking-down-co-on-craigslist-co-ads-on-craigslist.113779/page-117#post-2494321
    RedX spreadsheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1-Kvg78kCcvo5gL7UfPcmhmbsagTNtdj0y2LAiHVFrCU/pubhtml

    FREELOADER Debt is ILLEGAL and CAN’T BE ENFORCED.
    DON’T route out, BLOW, Get HELP, get OUT. CALL 1-866-XSEAORG

    Thanks AP & Barbara Angel : https://www.flickr.com/photos/120371503@N05/13156275813/in/set-72157642802079293

    • Robert Eckert

      Unclammy (book sale, just one old LRH Mission Earth paperback in the pile): http://tulsa.craigslist.org/bks/4783056707.html

      • Pierrot

        Thanks, sorted

      • Pierrot

        Hi Robert & Graham,
        Thanks for reporting non clams ads. I must confess that having done the extract & posting I do not quality control too well especially all the ads that came through while I sleep. I have devised a small procedure for you and anybody else
        to use, it highlights any counter ads and disables any non clam ads.
        The RedXQualControl Spreadsheet.
        Insert the URLs (links) from row 4 onward, leave 3 as an example (non activated). If it is a counter ad type a “y” in column B, for non-clam
        leave column B blank.
        After each trawling session a script will run and highlight or disable any reported link and will refresh the RedXQualControl sheet by removing all the links acted upon.
        Check it out and book mark it: https://docs.google.com/spread

        Thanks for your help and dedication.

  • HillieOnTheBeach

    Perhaps there’s a big chunk of missing context in the example given above, but I’m going to have to disagree that ignoring or dismissing someone voicing suicidal thoughts is ever a good idea.

    • No, it’s not a good idea and I don’t think that was Jon’s point.

      • HillieOnTheBeach

        Perhaps another example to make the point?

        • He simply suggests to focus subject’s attention on positive aspects of his or her communication.

          • HillieOnTheBeach

            I know that was his point and it’s fine. However, it doesn’t take into account that the person may be struggling with mental health issues, such as depression, and focusing on the positive is worthless to overcome them.

            • True. Perhaps Jon himself will comment on that. But context is everything indeed.
              Your point is valid.

            • HillieOnTheBeach

              But it does raise a good question: Jon’s post assumes a scientologist who does not have mental health issues, but what are friends and family to do to convince a scientologist to get the medical mental health help he/she might obviously need?

            • It’s a touchy territory. Defining “Magical thinking” and “PTSD” might be a good start.
              I am not a Doctor. And it’s different from person to person and their current state of mind.

    • Silence of the Clams

      True Suicidal ideations should not be confused with attention seeking behavior. More often than not, it is attention seeking and generally someone suffering any number of psychiatric disorders. I’ve heard the ‘ignore it and it will go away message before and given the latter circumstance, it does work quite well. I’ve seen actual suicidal thoughts and the attention seeking kind. They are fairly well far-afield of each other. I understand your desire to point out the issue though. It’s a good point.

      • Eclipse-girl

        When I was in the midst of my suicidal ideations, I never spoke of them.
        I did not want to attract attention.
        It took my psychiatrist asking me point blank if I was having suicidal thoughts, before I would talk about it.

        That is just me, and my anecdotal reporting.

        • Stacy

          Sadly, I just learned the other day that when my brother had his first bout of depression around age 18, he actually got to the point of attempting suicide (carbon monoxide poisoning in a car- he panicked as the fumes got bad and aborted) and never told anyone at that time. Bad enough to look back almost 30 years and consider I almost lost my brother.

          Frequently, those who are serious about suicide DON’T talk about it. However, there are serious differences by gender and culture that affect suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. I wouldn’t ever want to mistake someone’s serious talk of suicide for simple attention-getting. I always take it seriously and push for them seeking help.

          If my parents hadn’t emphasized doing everything ourselves and not asking anyone for help, maybe my brother would have sought help and never attempted suicide.

          • Eclipse-girl

            stoicism was a part of my childhood, too.

            You have my sympathy. I am glad your brother stopped his attempt. I hope he has received some help in the last 30 yrs.

            I agree that if someone ever mentions suicide, it should be taken seriously.
            You never want to deal with the loss of a loved one to suicide.

            • Stacy

              He’s learned to help himself. He’s stubbornly resisted any attempts to go to counseling. He’s also indicated that no bout of depression since the first one has ever been that bad again.

              His approach isn’t the approach I’d recommend to anyone dealing with depression, but I can’t force him to go to counseling or get on an anti-depressant. He’s doing pretty well. We’re a lot closer now than when he was 18. I was only 11 then. Not the best candidate for pouring out your woes. I keep an eye on him. And he keeps an eye on me.

            • “I keep an eye on him. And he keeps an eye on me.”

              So cool.

            • Stacy

              Yeah, it’s cool to have siblings who look out for each other. Too bad my sister never joined in this practice.

              Still, I imagine you have friends and other family who fill this role.

              The downside of siblings is having a sister like mine. The upside is my brother.

            • Some friends, definitely family. It’s just I always longed for a sister and/or brother.
              Happy for you and your brother!

            • Stacy

              I do understand that longing. I always wanted an older sister I could hang out with and do sister things with. But yeah, my brother is pretty awesome. We’ve had a lifetime of combining friends and being very close. It’s great.

            • 🙂 🙂

          • Helen Van Patterson Patton

            I discovered that there’s no tactful or comfortable way to inform other people that you might be suicidal. And there’s definitely no way to ask for help casually.

            http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/2013/05/depression-part-two.html

        • Robert Eckert

          “It took my psychiatrist asking me point blank if I was having suicidal thoughts” Same here, and my response was sort of on the line of “Of course, doesn’t everybody?” I just thought it was impolite to talk about the dark thoughts. I didn’t realize it wasn’t normal.

          • Eclipse-girl

            I am glad you got the help.

            • Robert Eckert

              The therapist helped, but the drugs were necessary, although I’m not taking them anymore.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Sounds like me.

              The meds were absolutely necessary.
              Along with the therapy.

              I no longer need either.

              I know that meds will not help everyone, and finding the right medication can be long and awful for the person in need.

      • Eileen

        You are making a dangerous comparison. They are not far afield of one another, but rather are on a continuum. Dodo is right.

  • 1subgenius

    It’s particularly apropos, with Jon’s reference to Twain, and I haven’t gotten tired of this quote.
    Seems Twain had some insight into the process of recovery from delusions, and its difficulty:
    “It is easier to fool someone than to convince them that they have been fooled.”

    • Jon Atack

      Much, much easier.

      • 1subgenius

        That’s why I like your subtle approach.
        You want to let people get to that place on their own. Then they own it.
        The brain is funny like that.
        I don’t know if you saw the quote of lyrics from, of all people the Doobie Brothers, actually written by Kenny Loggins and Michael McDonald:
        “What a fool believes he sees
        A wise man has no power to reason away.”

        • Jon Atack

          It is hard to part a fool from his folly. But easy to part him from his money.

          Much of my approach is simply reverse scientology – there is no single route for everyone, because, as the Holy Brian said, we are all different. And, as Hubbard said in DMSMH, there is no point simply adding more suggestions to those already in place, so we should undo those which are already there. For me, we all have unquestionable assumptions and they are the bedrock of our folly. My first formal intervention on a believing member freaked me out significantly (in part because of my own sleep deprivation, but also because of the seven car loads of scnists and PIs who thankfully failed to stop us). It put me into a very unpleasant altered state, whence I realized that as a nipper I had been given the absolute notion that I must love everybody (I took Jesus very literally, at age four). It was extremely hard challenging that assumption. The cognitive dissonance was horrific. But, in the end, I determined that I could challenge any notion – and since then, I have, and I feel very comfortable questioning anything (though I am now a cynical misanthrope, but heck, all systems have their down side!).

          • 1subgenius

            Excitement.
            I have chosen to not even attempt to change anyone’s mind on anything anymore.
            Partly because “who the hell am I? The world’s cop?”, and a lot because of the difficulty.
            On most things, I question why I should care if someone believes something I disagree with. I don’t, unless it affects me somehow. Or the person is in some imminent peril. Usually neither is the case.

            In a way I also feel it is respecting the person’s autonomy. They either will or won’t change, and 100 years from now what difference will it make?

            Cynical misanthrope? I think not completely. You wouldn’t be doing what you are doing if you were. Maybe some days. Maybe most days.

            Today on my trike ride back from the market, I was thinking, yet again, that I hate people. And then I reminded myself, yet again, that, no, I just hate most people, most of the time.

            “I love people. They’re the ones I can’t stand” (They Might Be Giants)

            • Jon Atack

              I’m not sure what the parameters of mind changing are. Some would argue that simply by using language (or looking in my direction) you are seeking to persuade me. Why communicate if you don’t want others to accept your ideas? For my part, I love ideas and differentiate between lying nonsense (aka Scn) and palpable science. The recent descent into post-modernism – where every opinion is equal – is horrible anti-science, which can have devastating consequences on an unprotected mind. So ‘science’ is seen as a belief system, rather than a method of enquiry. And, yes, we should accept that our opinions are opinions, but reason and opinion are not the same, so changing someone’s mind is not necessarily an act of dominance. It can actually be helpful and lead them to a better capacity to use their thinking.

              As the Zen master said, abandon opinions but cherish your beliefs.

              And, yes, sadly, my experiences do leave me with little hope for humanity. I take pleasure from lifting people out of the fog, however, so there is a selfish motivation. And, who knows, one day true love may find me (I don’t think it is looking very hard, though) and lift me into blissful wonderment at the human condition. Until then, I shall continue to be grumpy.

              I don’t actively hate anyone – I wept when Hubbard died, because he was unredeemed (not so sure about DM, but if he wanted to chat, I’d be willing) – but I don’t feel compelled to love anyone, either.

            • 1subgenius

              “Why communicate if you don’t want others to accept your ideas?”

              It may be a problem with definitions, but I can see a difference between accepting and just understanding, or receiving a communication.

              (“I hear there’s a space program, when you sing you can’t hear, there’s no air.
              Sometimes I think I’d really like that, and other times I think I’m already there.” –They Might Be Giants [John Linnel and John Flansburgh])

              Does “accept” mean agree with?

              I see communication as just a way, perhaps, of reinforcing one’s own existence.
              (And, as I re-read what I am writing, I wonder about the difference between communicating fact versus opinion.)

              And the information conveyed may have a life of its own, and just be using you as a container, a processor, to propagate itself.

              See “The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood” by James Gleick

              Best book I ever read. A very fun book. (Promise to read it if you haven’t. Oh how I hate when people do that to me.)

              “As the Zen master said, abandon opinions but cherish your beliefs.”

              I’m not sure of the difference. But I love Schopenhauer’s “A conclusion is the place we got tired of thinking.”

              I like this formulation:

              “Thinking is the hardest work of all. That’s why so few of us engage in it.” (Emerson?…not sure)
              ” A conclusion is the place we got tired of thinking.” (Schopenhauer)

              “We see and hear what we expect to see and hear.” (Thoreau?)

              Ha ha:
              “And, who knows, one day true love may find me (I don’t think it is looking very hard, though)….”

              I keep thinking about how I’m not looking very hard.

              From John Hiatt:

              “I’m not lookin’ for another
              I’m just lookin’ to get long gone
              To someplace that no sweetheart has discovered
              Someplace where memories don’t hold on
              Someplace where memories don’t hold on

              Somewhere the ties won’t bind me
              Someplace where love can’t find me
              Somewhere the past’s behind me
              Someplace where love can’t find me
              Oh, someplace where love can’t find me

              It’s the same old sad situation
              Fall in love and it breaks your heart
              Surely there’s somewhere in this great nation
              Where no one comes together just to fall apart
              No one comes together just to fall apart”

              Watch what you wish for, you might get it.

              By the way, you are loved and appreciated.

            • Jon Atack

              So, you want to change my mind by having me read a book, huh? I’ve ordered it, thanks. Read his Chaos when it came out. And, thanks, it is good to know that I’m appreciated. I’ve been transferring some interviews from the Secret Life of Hubbard (I have the whole set, never yet published), and listened to a few, as I’ve been working, and one aspect of Hubbard becomes very clear – from his 1950 girlfriend, from Gerry and Jim Dincalci who spent quite some time in his company in the 70s – he was extremely unhappy, most of the time. So, I’ve decided that maybe I don’t want to become a cult leader, after all…

            • 1subgenius

              Ha ha:
              “So, you want to change my mind by having me read a book, huh?”

              Yeah, maybe.

              Maybe its just the information propagating itself.

              “So, I’ve decided that maybe I don’t want to become a cult leader, after all…”

              Yeah, not what it’s cracked up to be.

            • 1subgenius

              “Some would argue that simply by using language (or looking in my direction) you are seeking to persuade me.”
              Boy, I’m still thinking on that one, you sob.
              Who are they? I’d like to see the rationale. Where that comes from and where it goes.

            • Jon Atack

              Find a copy of NLP founders Grinder and Bandler’s Frogs into Princes (and I absolutely do not advocate the practice of NLP!) – all communication is an effort to persuade or indeed to hypnotise – as opposed to no communication is such an effort. It amused me, when I read it back in 1984, I find it unreadable now, but then I know how to firewalk…

              If I ever have time – once I’ve finished answering these questions – I will finish my magnum opus, Waking Reason, which seeks to differentiate between ethical and exploitative persuasion. Like you, I tend towards Chuang Tzu’s take it or leave it position (though it is nice when I manage to persuade someone not to waste their life in devotion to the scheme of subjection put forward by an evil narcissist. But maybe that’s just me).

            • 1subgenius

              “…differentiate between ethical and exploitative persuasion…”

              Yeah, this is the line. And is there another one where persuasion, regardless of the ends, becomes something more, eg. hypnotism?

              I’m confused somewhat by “exploitative”. Seems to relate to the purpose of the persuasion. What if one used unfair, coercive, hypnotic persuasion to induce the person to do truly noble deeds?
              I have said many times, that until there’s a test for brainwashing/free-will, these cults will continue.
              And I think I saw somewhere that someone had done some work on a question/answer process that went down this line.

              Now I’m more of the view that there are things in place, at least legally, such as undue influence, etc. that have some value should anyone choose to use them. I’m not really up on this, but it seems like I’ve seen some movement in Europe toward a standard for finding, or at least attempting to remedy, the effects of coercive persuasion.

              Yeah, I suggested a book. And, my word, you took the suggestion. And were familiar with the author.
              I’m still investigating my motives for doing so (thanks, Jon!). A part is the joy of sharing this really neat thing. Man, it’s just full of fun facts and history. Including a lot about the work of Ada Lovelace and Alan Turing, who is the subject of a good recent film. But he goes back to the first known codes for information, and things like African drum language and brings it all the way up to now. So it’s just a marvelous informative read.

              And I didn’t really think there was something there that I was trying to persuade you about, but I guess there is. Gleick’s perspective. (Thus, the “Theory” part of the title)

              And why would I want to share, or have you adopt, that perspective?

              To reassure myself, if another understands it, that I’m not crazy ?
              But I don’t fully understand it anyway, and so I don’t even know that I agree with it.

              I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy it. I have “Chaos” but haven’t started it. It’s almost like reading the Bible, and asking, “This is great! What did he write before this?”
              I should have read “Chaos” first I suppose.
              I told the guy who recommended “The Information” that I was just going to re-read it for the rest of my life There’s that much there.

              Boy I get a charge when someone can see a point I’m trying to make, as rarely as it seems to happen.

              ” (though it is nice when I manage to persuade someone not to waste their life in devotion to the scheme of subjection put forward by an evil narcissist. But maybe that’s just me)”

              That is nice, and me and most people don’t have that presented to them. Nor possess the skills necessary to even try. But then how hard could nuclear fusion be if you have the right tools?

              The few times, at raids, that I’ve had any face time with them, I don’t even try, because I know I’d botch it.

              I did make the crazy bitch at the DC org laugh though. As she came at me with a cam, I ran away in mock terror, and cowered behind a thin tree trunk. I saw a grin. I felt it was the best I was going to do.

              I don’t know who Chuang Tzu is, but, of course, I admire the wisdom of those who agree with me.
              (I shouldn’t be paranoid, and give you my contact info. I’d like to keep in touch. Hey, Tony can vouch for me, we met when he was in my town. Detroit. Or maybe not…. he he….if you want it, he has it)

            • Jon Atack

              There is a difference between persuasion as in sharing information and persuasion as in manipulating behaviour. Margaret Singer offered the term ‘exploitative persuasion’ and her book, with the most excellent Janja Lalich, Cults in Our Midst, is a must read (as is Chuang Tze – especially the ‘essential’ first 7 chapters).

              We cannot necessarily distinguish our motives for offering ideas to others. I have always enjoyed debate and unpicking an argument has a satisfaction for me – like resolving a Rubik’s cube or learning a complex drum rudiment. At times this infuriates others, either because I have aroused cognitive dissonance or because I have been tactless (or both). But the transformation of ideas is a joy, once you have learned to embrace that cognitive dissonance. Sometimes, I even learn something. Let me again and again recommend John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty as the basic text of critical thinking.

              By communicating, we will persuade others, whether we like it or not and whether we intend it or not. If we communicate as accurately as possible, with tolerance for other points of view and without hiding the agenda, then education takes place. And I have found our conversation educational, so thank you!

            • 1subgenius

              All the best to you.

  • As Life of Brian was suggested I was wondering whether Bowfinger would be a step too far? I know it might sound twee but I remember watching it the first time before I really started following scientology and would definitely put it up as one of Steve Martin’s better and funnier movies and watching it again it is soooo much a rip on the cult but would a hardcore clam see the funny side, or even notice the obvious similarities.

    Would love to hear from those who are exes who have seen it – was it funny for you? Could it fit into Jon’s list or is it OTT for it?

    • Phil McKraken

      Ah yes, Bowfinger targets Scientology (“Mindhead”), dimwitted movie star adherents, and the Celebrity Center pretty closely. Hilarious dual performance by Eddie Murphy too.

      • Sejanus

        ok this should have been the trailer…then I would have seen it..lol

    • Tony Ortega

      Yeah, but you have to sit through more than an hour of silly crap before Mindhead even shows up.

      • Ms. B. Haven

        For that reason, I think Bowfinger might just be the ticket. If someone finds the silly crap funny enough, they may just loosen up and relax enough to be caught a little off guard and the Mindhead analogy might hit home in a big way. The downside is that it might be too obvious and scare them away.
        I’m not a sophisticated New Yorker like yourself, I found Bowfinger to be hilarious. I have to admit I have a hard time finding common ground with friends and family when it comes to movies, my sense of humor is way too sophomoric.

        • Science Doc

          Steve Martin, a sophisticated New Yorker himself, always claimed that Mindhead had nothing to do with Scientology, but we know that game. The writer of General Hospital recently said that he just pulled Miscavige Institute for the Criminally Insane out of the air.

          • Anonymous

            Martin was born in Texas and raised in Southern California.

            He may live in NY now (am not sure) but that is definitely not his roots. He honed his earliest comedy / magic act working at Knott’s Berry Farm in Anaheim.

            He was a Philosophy major before dropping out of college and used to joke that his goal was to “open a small Philosophy store on Hollywood Blvd.”

            • Science Doc

              Yep. Hence the banjo. But he’s the consummate New Yorker now, and he occupies a space in modern art ( as an actor collector, enthusiast) a bit like Dennis Hopper a generation before, with a New York vibe.

            • Anonymous

              I always admired his occupation of a space in modern art…

          • Jon Atack

            And Orson Welles said that Citizen Kane had nothing to do with Hearst, though the reference to ‘rosebud’ (Hearst’s name for Marion Davies’ private parts) augers differently. Who would ever admit that they wanted to be sued? We could add The Master to our list, too – disappointing though it was, because it shifted so far away into the safety zone (and how dreadful, given the two brilliant leads).

      • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

        It is neither silly nor crap. It is more like a satire of small time wannabees until it turns into a satire of Scientology. I love the film.

        • Phil McKraken

          I agree with you, and too bad for Tony for his misjudgment of that fine, funny movie.

      • Jon Atack

        That is the problem.

    • Science Doc

      Brazil has since its premier been one of my favorite movies. I just noticed the analogies with Scientology, particularly that between Information Retrieval and Sec Checking. The Central Services obsessions with stupid paperwork and procedures also resonates. I think what this really speaks to is the power of Terry Gilliam’s dystopian vision.

      • Stacy

        Seeing Brazil on that list made me smile. Now I can justify buying it to myself. It’s been too many years since I’ve seen it.

      • Jon Atack

        I revere Gilliam from the Python big foot, through Time Bandits to 12 Monkeys and beyond. A true genius. And The Fisher King is superb, too.

        • Science Doc

          Good to hear from you Jon. Have you ever seen Lost in La Mancha?

          • Jon Atack

            Yes, the subject that defeated both Orson Welles and Terry Gilliam. And what a subject! I guess we’ve all tilted at the odd windmill, though.

    • Jon Atack

      Bowfinger is a good addition – though I’m told that the script moved further and further away from any possibility of being sued by our favourite group (which runs ‘the friendliest place on the planet’ tm). There is Holy Man, too. And Elmer Gantry (both the book and the Burt Lancaster movie) – it’s all coming back to me now!

  • 1subgenius

    This does not contradict Jon, but is more in line with the Twain quote earlier.
    (and all these years I had the lyrics wrong)
    Doobie Brothers:
    “But what a fool believes he sees
    No wise man has the power to reason away”

    Loggins/McDonald

    • ScientologyDoesNotExist

      RIP Keith Knudsen, one of their drummers, Narconon did not help him back in the day. He managed to lift himself out other ways, got back with Doobie’s. Passed in 2005.

      http://truthontatelabianca.com/threads/appendix-2-scientology-celebrities-list-part-2.1789/

      http://youtu.be/EHJY5in77eQ

      • 1subgenius

        From that list:

        “Soleil Moon Fry, a Hollywood actress”

        Not my Punky Brewster!

    • Robert Eckert

      Are THOSE the words?! I always thought it was “What a fool be WEEE, oooh SCREECH, doo WAH WAH WAH la power”

      • 1subgenius

        Yer a funny guy.
        But I did have the lyrics all wrong all these years.
        I thought it went:
        “What a fool believes
        A wise man has the power
        To reason away”

        The actual lyrics are deeper, and quite in line with the Twain quote.

      • Jon Atack

        Me too, but then they were using the old doobie in their brotherhood.

  • Sejanus

    Who is more foolish
    The fool or the fool that follows him?

    Obi Wan Kenobi…..arguably made infinitely more sense than all of Lord Rotten Maw’s ramblings combined.

    I do love the Shrinking World documentary though…it gets me riled up everytime.
    I just don’t see any of the much lauded charisma of the con artist.

  • Just to add to what Jon said, one of the most key aspects of getting out of the whole scientology mindset,
    is realizing that Hubbard used many common sense concepts to position scientology with, and attributing it to scientology. It’s nothing but a marketing mind trick. All his somewhat original stuff (Clear and OT concepts) never came to fruition. So, it’s important for an ex member to be informed of that, imho.

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Dodo, are you as chill and practical in person?
      Inquiring minds want to know!

      • I am full of surprises. The rest is confidential.

        • 1subgenius

          Reminds me of the purported last will of Rabelais:
          “I have nothing, owe a great deal, and the rest I leave to the poor.”

          • joan nieman

            I like that one sub!

            • 1subgenius

              A classic.

  • Missionary Kid

    My oldest sister was involved with Dianetics about 55 years ago, going to meetings at A. E. VanVogt’s home. She had moved back home after dropping out of college. One day, I came home to find her in the back yard, t(earing up her Dianetics texts and notes and burning them in a pile.

    When I asked her what was going on, she told me that Dianetics was “Of the Devil”, which is, in fundamentalist Christian terms, the equivalent of “entheta.”

    She subsequently turned into an ultra fundamentalist Christian, who, even my parents considered a bit extreme.

    Considering the Hubbard – Crowley connection, I think she was even more right than she realized. $cientology, the successor to Dianetics truly is, “of the Devil.”

    At least my sister, as nutty as I think she is, hasn’t ever thought of disconnecting from me, as I’ve left Christianity.

    • Interesting non-disconnection point. May be scientology should look into it. But who am I kidding…

      • Missionary Kid

        Exactly.

    • Missionary Kid

      Thank you Jon, for giving us even more ways to counter the cult.

      Thank you, Tony, for providing this forum.

      • Jon Atack

        Thank-you for your thanks – it really does encourage me to keep working. My first dozen years were fairly grim in that respect, so the Bunker is a heartening place. An exmember recently commented that I don’t visit the message boards because I have a low opinion of exmembers. This is not true. I don’t visit them because I have no time to spare. I have been incredibly impressed by the level of debate here at the Bunker. Please encourage those on the message boards to join us. And please feel free to repost my pieces onto those message boards. I’m happy to report that FACTNet is now republishing my pieces, from antique days to this very moment. And I’m very proud to be part of such a group of people, contrary to my critic’s opinion. I think we are making remarkable progress, between us, considering the invasive nature of the ‘Tech’ and the daily attempts to silence us (and ‘ruin us utterly’, in the words of Hubbard’s ‘scripture’).

        And I thank Tony, too, for being simply the best journalist who has ever taken this subject on. And I’ve worked with about 200 media people over the years, and read the work of a few hundred more. Let’s make him the first recipient of the jon atack award, eh?

        • Missionary Kid

          Because Tony insists on sticking to the facts, he’s forced the rest of us to be more vigilant about what our sources are. You’ve also done a great job of laying out the clear history of $cientology.

          There’s a lot of speculation that goes on here in the bunker, but publishing your pieces here seems to do a lot for exes, because the pieces look at the underlying mechanism that $cientology does everything in its power to hide.

        • I can only imagine how grim your first dozen years were, Jon…

          Thank you for surviving them and writing. It’s so very appreciated!
          Wishing you a happy day, every day.

    • Silence of the Clams

      Hey, maybe she will apply some of that skeptical thinking to Christianity as well. Glad you two are still connected!

      • Missionary Kid

        She won’t be skeptical. Her whole life revolves around her church and that’s where her friends are. She’s 77, so she won’t change.

        When she was working, she’d get up at 4:00 am so she could read the bible and pray before she left for work. The secular world is something she has a tough time with.

        She’s not harming anyone, and she’s good to people, so I leave her alone.

        • joan nieman

          “she’s good people” that alone says it all.

    • Dale A.

      ” I’ve left Christianity.” Thank you MK. As someone who used to be a practicing Anglican, I know what those words mean. And I agree with Silence, we all need to find a way to stay connected to people with whom the distance that has intervened appears fatal. It’s not.

      • Missionary Kid

        One thing we have in common is being missionary kids, and another is our controlling, manipulative, passive – aggressive father.

        She views him through rose colored glasses. My other sister and I don’t.

        • joan nieman

          MK, you are your own person and that is the best way to be. I had been forced into a religion also. When I became a teenager, I would skip church on Sundays by going for a coke or meeting my friends. Mom never knew that my sister and I had never attended the services from that time until we left home and went on with our own lives.

          • Missionary Kid

            I always got a quiz on the sermon, and my parents were around for Sunday school, So I couldn’t duck out. So I didn’t have to sit in the church, I took the job of taping the sermon for the shut-ins in a. room that was out of the way.

            For a long time, I had more time in church than I had in bars because I spent probably 5 – 8 hours a week there growing up. That didn’t include church camp or revivals.

            My dad wasn’t the minister at the church I grew up in, but he was a deacon. When I went to college, my parents went to Taiwan as missionaries again and I went to a Lutheran church with my sister and brother in law. That was so much less restrictive than what I grew up with.

    • Science Doc

      That’s a great story. I had a friend in my youth who already been drafted and then kicked out on a section 8, who I considered to be a member of the Religion of the Month Club. He went through everything that was available, and no I don’t remember if he found Ron. He went through every Christian denomination plus Buddism and New Age beliefs. He once called me and told me that the world was ending that afternoon and I should come over to his house and watch it. I told him I could probably see it from my house. 40 years later he tried to reconnect with me and I discovered that after spending his 20s lying on the couch he became a Byzantine Roman Catholic priest. I had to look it up.

      • Missionary Kid

        Your friend, like my sister, are what I call seekers.

        They want everything explained to them.

        I happen to believe that not only it’s impossible, because knowledge is advancing, but that having explanations come out of belief instead of evidence is a mistake.

      • joan nieman

        Good story Science Doc. It goes to show though, how people are always searching for the truth and validation of their lives. I like to think we are all unique and have the ” truth” already there, in our inner beings. Just live and let live, so to speak!

      • villagedianne

        “He once called me and told me that the world was ending that afternoon and I should come over to his house and watch it. I told him I could probably see it from my house.”

        Lol!

      • Still_On_Your_Side

        Priceless: “I could probably see it from my house.”

    • joan nieman

      Good for your sister MK. I am glad there was no disconnection.

    • Jon Atack

      Cult hopping. Sadly, many ostensibly Christian groups do practice ‘shunning’. In St Petersburg, I was distressed to hear the story of a man in his mid-30s whose Jehovah’s Witness parents had disconnected from him. But, yes, as I’ve said before, Scn is a magic ritual. Hubbard was the ‘games maker’, DM is the ‘player’ (the only one who knows the rules – rather more than just ‘make money; make more money; maker others produce so as to make even more money’ as Hubbard publicly explained his ‘governing policy – to make Hubbard into God); and we, the pieces, moved around as part of the ritual.

      There are many people out there who set about ‘helping’ cult victims just so that they can convert them to their own belief. Myself, I favour critical thinking. If you want to sign up ‘for the duration of the universe’ with some other outfit, once you’ve found a handle on thinking, that’s fine. Back in the old days, when I did interventions, I would explain beforehand that my intention was never to convince anyone to leave scn, but to give them information they didn’t have, so that they could make an informed decision. As it happened, during that five year period, everyone who would speak to me (two people refused) actually left.

  • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

    Thanks Jon. Biggest point I take from your long list of books, is just give the member something else to sink his/her mental teeth into, and let the member percolate the ideas around all by themselves. Let them make the inevitable comparisons themselves, and use books that Hubbard even recommends!

    This is an impressive list of related books, I hadn’t even known of the “B-1” GO/OSA list of books.

    On the total other hand, I remember some of the students, even in my Flag Course Room, who were “PTS”, would bring up to me some excellent spotting of inconsistencies in Hubbard’s own works, even as they sat there at Flag, on full time training, they themselves would bump into Hubbard ideas that they seemed incredulous over.

    Debating the ideas, how to get the person to begin doing that, and erode their confidence that Hubbard must be absolutely right in all cases, letting the member see the weaknesses in Hubbard’s ideas, getting the member back to rationally being able to criticize Hubbard without going into the trained self-censoring which Scientologists learn is their only “safe” course, it all comes down to getting the members back into normal thinking and comparing, getting the member to compare without fear.

    Excellent article, I’ll use it for emailing to those that come my way for advice!

    Thanks Jon.

    • “..they themselves would bump into Hubbard ideas that they seemed incredulous over.”

      That applies to every. single. scientologist. ever.

    • I never knew that the CofS kept a formal list of forbidden books, like the Catholic Index Librorum Prohibitorum but it no longer surprises me. Does anyone have any idea of the titles it contains?

      • Stacy

        I’m betting Jon Atack knows.

        • Jon Atack

          Me too. Knows what? That Ommadawn is better than Tubular Bells? I do like Viv Stanshall’s voice over.

          • Stacy

            ☺️

            If CoS keeps a list of forbidden books and movies.

            • Jon Atack

              Not to my knowledge. Though, sadly, they don’t recommend my book to their members.

            • Stacy

              It was interesting to see Hubbard’s bulletin on 2001: A Space Odyssey. Has CoS ever posted a bulletin on your book?

            • Jon Atack

              Not that I’ve ever seen. They did sue me a number of times. Does that count?

            • Stacy

              I’d still bet DM has a policy specifically regarding you (with a lot of CICS’s peppered throughout it). Maybe Marty’s their Big Bad now, but you’ve been causing them a lot of grief for decades. That’s pretty noteworthy. It’s possibly yogurt noteworthy.

            • Jon Atack

              Now you’re talking! I am lactose intolerant though, so it will have to be ewe’s milk. When I issued my declare of DM, back in 1984, we sent it to all the orgs and I’m told that the Chicago muster cheered when it was read out… So, I am a platinum SP, along with my buddies Gerry and Lawrence. This is possible the highest status imaginable, and it means that we glow in the dark (sorry, plutonium SP).

            • Stacy

              i’d have a better response for the glowing in the dark if my day werent so hectic.

            • Jon Atack

              As Our Founder (who art in the Pacific Ocean) said, if you want a job done, ask a busy man (or in this case woman). You just aren’t busy enough. Same as stopping smoking – on which he was an expert as he occasionally drew several breaths without smoke in – you just smoke more. And eventually, you too will glow…

            • Stacy

              I must not be smoking enough. Or too much. I need to quit.

              And I’m not at all sure I want to glow in the dark…

            • Jon Atack

              We do it so that others might see the way on foggy days or dark nights…

            • Stacy

              So, you’re either a Guiding Light or a Hinkypunk. And helpful when Rudolph wants a Christmas off. And Hubbard thought radiation was bad…

      • Anonymous

        I’m not aware of any formal list of forbidden books in Scientology but it would be pretty easy to think of a few books that are probably on the minds of local DSA’s (anything by Rathbun or any other ex comes to mind) that would give cause to label someone PTS if they are found to be reading.

        An important thing to remember is that BY FAR the majority of Scientologists ARE NOT in on the scam. They think they are members of an organization that is improving the world. At their level of involvement (the first two layers of the Scientology Onion) they are factually (and willfully) ignorant of 95% of the stuff that people on this board know about: http://exscn.net/content/view/178/105/.

        The further one goes into the six layers of the Scientology Onion, the harder it is to NOT KNOW that there are serious problems with any attempt to make rational, fair-minded sense out of the whole operation. By the time one is into layer 4 and 5, a whole new view exists.

        IMHO, by the time someone goes deeply into Layer 6 (which reveals the true history of Hubbard’s life and death) yet remains committed to Scientology, one is then a willful accomplice in a criminal conspiracy to commit fraud. That is a very, very tiny group of folks.

      • ScientologyDoesNotExist

        I remember when The Exorcist came out, we were ordered in no uncertain terms that reading or watching it would be darn enturbulatin’ – so don’t do it. I’ve heard that Miscavige removed Hubbard’s reference to “1984”. Reminds me – I have seen books like “1984” on quite a few still active members’ Facebook pages and others that just made me shake my head.

        • I read (somewhere – I forget where) an account by an ex-Scientologist who was told (along with the rest of the Org) that he was not, under any circumstances, to see Kubrick’s “2001”, as it was “restimulative”.

          It struck me at the time as an example of someone who had a little power in the organisation allowing it go to his head – who was enhancing his own imagined prestige with dark hint about his ‘superior’ knowledge of CofS ‘space opera’. A lot of internal censorship must come about in this way.

          What puzzles me is how people know what texts to avoid – or do committed Scientologists have no time for non-Hubbard reading?

          • Science Doc

            Jack Nicholson found The Shining restimulative.

          • HCO ETHICS ORDER

            To: All Staff 24/6/68
            From: HCO Area Director No: 691 L
            Subject: Ethics Protection.

            No staff or current students are to see the film “2001 – A SpaceOdyssey.”
            The film produces heavy and unneccessary restimulation.

            Ron Hopkins
            T/HCO AREA DIRECTOR

            • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

              2001-A Space Odyssey movie is perfect hatting for CST/Archives staff, I thought, when I saw it. Two Hubbard training films come to mind, “The Chaplain” and “Why TRs” and then one of the Hubbard advertisements, for the “Scientology Passport” ( a future lives record one uses when going to a Scientology “church” in one’s future lives, seeking to pick up where one left off on the Bridge in one’s last life).

            • ze moo

              They should watch Mel Brooks History of the World Part 1, the first few minutes anyway.

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2ER8CdhCDk

            • April

              I wonder why Mel Brooks never made a part 2 to HOTW? Or did he never intend to and “part 1” was just tongue in cheek humor?

            • hansje brinker

              Hmm, this is a real reference? How crazy.

            • Jon Atack

              Dear Hoppy. I remember seeing him playing flamenco guitar with David Dunlop, back in February 1984 – amazing! He was also the first ‘SP’ I dared to speak to, back in ’83 – and proved to be utterly charming.

              Perhaps we should add that Scientology ‘produces heavy and unnecessary restimulation’.

        • villagedianne

          Lot’s of people were enturbulated by The Exorcist. One of my friends, admittedly not the sharpest knife in the drawer, became fearful that her cat was possessed! It was a pretty disturbing movie at the time.

          • ze moo

            The music from the Exorcist is Mike Oldfields ‘tublar bells’ a masterpiece.

            • Science Doc

              Tubular Bells was very influential in the development of New Age music which unlike its namesake was an important cultural development.

            • L. Wrong Hubturd

              Check Ommadawn. Much better than TB.

          • Science Doc

            Cats are rarely actually possessed but it can be a useful approximation.

      • Jon Atack

        I don’t think they did. Until today. I was warned not to read Kaufman’s Inside Scientology, because it contained OT III material. Indeed, he was the first to leak the materials, for which we all owe him a debt of gratitude. How lucky that Hubbard was wrong, and it didn’t kill everyone who read it without having paid first.

    • Doug Parent

      “Debating the ideas, how to get the person to begin doing that, and erode their confidence that Hubbard must be absolutely right in all cases,….” How true. My next thought was in regards to my own journey back to my own domain as my own primary data evaluator-so to speak. And that thought was…that I recalled an earlier moment when essentially I was overwhelmed by Hubbard thus generating the idea that anything he said would be more correct than what I could come up with. Critical thinking seems to shut down in the face of that, and the subsequent inconsistencies tend to become justified. Mix in the group pressure and influence to abide and agree, and it’s good rich soil for thought control and manipulation to grow.

      • Jon Atack

        Fine points. If you knew what was wrong with you, it wouldn’t be wrong, is a great (and wrong) idea that was implanted with DMSMH. The notion that everything is thought derived (just as Mary Baker Eddy asserted, while creating her own cult – criticised by Hub in One Was Stubborn, if I remember aright, and then adopted as the basis for Scn – your ‘postulates’ made you do it).

        Only Ron will ever be ‘OT’ enough to actually perceive the world as it is and bring back Tech. We will never be more than Rondroids – he is the game maker – we are the pieces. But, as he said, ‘We build a world from broken pieces’. The statement should end ‘but first we have to break them.’

    • Jon Atack

      A pleasure, Chuck. It’s true that anything that distracts the believer is good, but this stuff all packs its own subtle punch. It may be years later that someone finally realizes the Hubbard was not the messiah, but a very naughty boy, but the seeds of doubt are in these books and films.

      Scary that the founder of a religion recommended Crowley, books on spying, books on hypnosis and, for that matter, Les Dane’s Big League Sales Closing Techniques. But what do I know, I’ve never founded a religion.

      I’ve mentioned Bernie Lowenstein (one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met, btw) who while CS at Melbourne was idly ringing a Hubbard article for evil purposes when the Joking and Degrading policy arrived. Sometimes the compartmentalization is stunning. But then, Otto Roos was ejected for pointing out that Hubbard’s folders contained literally hundreds of rock slams – which Hubbard had decided indicated a suppressive nature – most of the FLB crew were later RPFed for having even a single one.

      • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

        The R/S’s belonging to Hubbard causing Hubbard to short circuit mentally when these were thought to be somehow damaging to Hubbard’s mentality and “unhandled” by the well meaning top Apollo tech people who did that R/S FESing (folder error summary) work, wish we had cell phone cameras and someone would have caught Hubbard’s red faced bellowing on video!

        Good old Otto Roos, he and Ken Urquhart and all the other Apollo ex big cheeses ought do a get together and swap stories on video, for posterity. Hana too.

        It was so heartening first reading your “Piece of Blue Sky” for all that Apollo history, and Miller’s book and Corydon’s book too.

        Things are nutty today, but not as weird nutty as under bellowing Hubbard, reacting to his R/S’s being thought real, such a “wrong indication” to him, LOL!

        Laying out the history, as you did, shows how clearly Hubbard’s world was and continues to be a “wrong indication” from the normal public’s mind. Nutty groups with nutty ideas of “help” just can’t get world agreement on their nutty crank therapy and exorcism that supposedly will Clear the world of all the world’s genuine ills.

  • Alanzo

    Excellent list, Jon!!

    I have a lot of reading to do!

    As a preliminary to this process with a Scientologist, I believe a legitimate use of Scientology to undo Scientology indoctrination is to place the activity within the context of Logic 8: A datum can be evaluated only by a datum of comparable magnitude.

    Be sure to clear the word “ONLY”.

    Even the staunchest Scientologist can not deny that Hubbard wanted them to think for themselves!

    If the person can be reminded of earlier values and morals that they gave up in order to go against their own self-interests and become the loyal Scientologist that they have become today, they will un-indoc themselves. And un-indocing yourself is the only way it can be done.

    Generally, the rule is to use CONSONANCE to produce DISSONANCE.

    Hey! I like De-Brainwashing Saturdays on Tony’s Blog!

    I think everyone can use a little de-Brainwashing now and then!

    Alanzo

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      “De-Brainwashing Saturday”

      Perfect!

    • “De-Brainwashing Saturdays” I upvote.

    • Stacy

      Yes, it’s an excellent source list for everyone to advance their critical thinking skills and learn more about cults, hypnotism and indoctrination.

      And now I can justify to myself adding a large number of movies and documentaries to my library. ☺️

      • Alanzo

        I’m on it.

        I’m already compiling this resource list for the sidebar of my blog.

        Jon Atack is a treasure. I’m stealing everything he has.

        I’m so grateful to him for sticking around for so long, and enduring such high levels of cult bullshit, to keep helping people out of the trap of Scientology.

        Alanzo

        • And I am stealing everything Alanzo has, as well.

          • richelieu jr

            While you guys were talking, I stole everything you both had and will now begin selling it back to you…

            • Hahaha! Smooth, Mister. Oh, I steal your stuff all the time too, btw. 😉

            • richelieu jr

              Cut the clowning and maker with the moolah, mister!

              I’m an American now!

        • Stacy

          Putting up what he’s put up with has to be very difficult and tiring. And he’s basically dedicated his life to it. That’s dedication!

        • ScientologyDoesNotExist

          Off, off topic, but question: Was there Really a Celeb Center Chicago (Listed, of course, as actually in Des Plaines)? Came across reference to it and don’t remember one.

          • Alanzo

            Yes. I remember attending a “fundraiser” for CC Chicago in the late 1980’s at a posh downtown hotel, featuring the bass player for Pat Benatar as their first real celebrity recruit.

            He stood up to give a speech to the crowd of Scientologists and his pants were unzipped. (What are you gonna do? These kinds of problems come packaged tightly with rock and roll celebs.)

            I believe that Sindy Fagen knows much more about CC Chicago than I do.

            Alanzo

            • ScientologyDoesNotExist

              Chicago sure is a fun place! Sindy to the courtesy phone.

            • Alanzo

              Roger Capps! That’s him!

              Another example of the stable datum: “Everyone who has ever been involved in Scientology eventually leaves it.”

              Alanzo

            • Gus_Cox

              Oh, wow, great vid. Nice to see Roger playing – he co-wrote that song btw.

            • Gus_Cox

              Oh, wow – so that’s where he got in. That was Roger Capps. He was at CC in LA by 1990. The un-zipped pants don’t surprise me at all!

            • richelieu jr

              You could tell he wasn’t ‘clear’ from his pants being unzipped?

              How large was his fly, anyway?
              I could understand suddenly realizing he was Jewish… 😉

        • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

          One funny twist of history follows Jon Atack.

          Everyone inadvertently steals from Jon’s research, people come to his same conclusions, so much so that when Jon reads others, it’s been so long since Jon originally wrote it, Jon forgets its not even new!

          To me, Jon’s book title “…Piece of Blue Sky….” is the best un-brainwashing title of all time.

    • joan nieman

      Jon, you write the most interesting essays! I love how you open doors and let the light shine in. Thank you once again!

    • Jon Atack

      The datum of comparable magnitude is a good insight. I used to store up useful quotes as a member. When SO recruiters started in on me, I’d say ‘the artist injects the theta into the culture’ and go back to my brushes. But gathering some of those statements can be useful, and remember to present them in the right colour – ah, the methods of hypnosis! Red on white, green on white, blue on white…

  • s/Vaughan Young/Vaughn Young/

  • I frequently think of a book called “The Remains of the Day”, by Kazuo Ishiguro in this context.

    The character who relates the story is Sevens, a butler who manages a great household for a (fictional) Lord Darlington. Stevens loyalty to his employer is absolute, and he sacrifices his own personal life in this cause. He does not understand, let alone question, his master’s mad efforts to cement a friendly relationship with Hitler’s fascist regime in the pre-war years which he unknowingly supports when he (for example) facilitates political meetings in county houses.

    Much of the book is given over to Stevens’ realisation that he gave his loyalty too easily, and chose badly – and his reflections upon what might have been if he had taken a different road.

    It is a brilliant book. Perhaps it will have more resonance with ex-Scientologists than present members – but as an examination of the consequences of misplaced loyalty it is essential reading.

    • Jon Atack

      Excellent addition – and a fine book. Please keep them coming.

  • mzuridini

    Thank you John attack for explaining how you’ve gotten people out of Scientology. If you can do that in one day, I’d say that’s very impressive.

    Yet even ex-Scientologists continue to believe in things that aren’t exactly true or scientific. How do you introduce an ex to cognitive science? The Libet Experiment. I’ll explain the Libet Experiment, and that will get a person thinking.. If they can wrap their head around the Libet Experiment, that will usually put them on the critical-thinking path.

    The Libet Experiment explains that, even before you ‘decide’ to move your finger, the brain has already sent your finger a message to get ready to move! After the get ready message, you consciously “make the decision,” and then your finger moves..

    If your finger ‘knows’ it’s about to move, even before you have the conscious thought to do so, what does that say about intention? Intention is not the instantaneous thing scientologists like to think it is. Intention is the result of the ongoing interaction of both conscious and unconscious thought processes.

    • Robert Eckert

      But the experimenter told him to be ready to make a decision to lift his finger sometime earlier.

      • mzuridini

        He gave him the finger?

  • Anonymous

    For those that may be curious about the Big Muddy Ranch and Rajneeshis, the article linked below is a sort of recap of the fallout of that cult induced episode. The parallels to Scientology are startling:

    http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=19951211&slug=2157191

    • giggler

      Thanks for that, was wishing to know more but couldn’t find where I could get hold of the documentary, have you any ideas on that as well?

      • Anonymous

        I do not…there is a ton of stuff on YouTube…or you could ask Jaden Smith (heh.)

        • Science Doc

          Yea. Let’s ask her about theoretical physics too after she gets time to write down her novels that put Pynchon to shame.

          • Anonymous

            I understand that she is working on a new paper about the Lorentz transformation…something about driving a car at night faster than the speed of light and wondering if the headlights would help her see better…

        • giggler

          Tee hee

      • There is a documentary made by Oregon Public Broadcasting called “Rajneeshpuram” which is available here http://vimeo.com/83213463 This might be what you are looking for.

        • giggler

          Thanks

      • Some other articles here:
        Category:Rajneeshee

        This might be what you’re looking for:
        Rajneeshees in Oregon: The Untold Story April 16, 2011, The Oregonian

        • giggler

          Thanks will check them out

    • villagedianne

      Here is a quote from the above-linked article:

      “McGreer and others also say they have a new-found distrust of the government which, at the time, they thought was slow, ineffective and frightened off by money and the Rajneeshees’ claim to be a religious group.”

      Familiar scenario.

    • Jon Atack

      Thanks! I used to show My Dance is Now Complete and ask if the believer saw any comparison, the answer was always ‘no’. Then a few hours later, the comparisons would start flowing out.

      My favourite Rajneesh quote – very useful for those who still believe his valium/nitrous oxide bs is ‘With a living master, everything works. With a dead master, nothing works.’

  • Completely OT but…

    It’s currently quite cold in the UK, and forecasters are promising us snow for winter. When I passed by the Plymouth (UK) Org last night, I looked in the (huge, single glazed) window. There were two people in there, sitting at desks. One had an electric fan heater literally at her feet – which strongly suggests either they can’t afford to heat the place &/or were not expecting any casual customers.

    Which brings me to a question – is Father Christmas an implant, or an Operating Thetan who was declared for being out-exchange? The public needs to know.

    • Sid

      Father Christmas is an R6 god who promises wonderful things but in reality never delivers. Kind of like Scientology.

      • TheQueenofBulgravia

        Our Father Christmas delivers! Bitter Apostate Apostate!!!

      • Jon Atack

        We always deliver what we promise. But we may not have it there in time for Christmas.

        • Sid

          Time is just a consideration after all. We’ll deliver in a billion years.

          • Jon Atack

            And money is just an idea backed by confidence (tricks).

            • Sid

              O snap! Clever.

    • Fuuukain Bullshoit.

    • What Scientology needs to know: How does Father Christmas keep his Central Files in order without continuous All Hands events by the elfs?

      • Obviously, by demanding large donations from rich elves (or the Welfy, as they are know at the North Pole).

        • After pulling all the KRs from their Ethics Naughty or Nice files.

          • Santaology: it’s bad for your ‘elf.

      • Jon Atack

        He has the help of the Lords of Karma, who make sure we get our just desserts by recording every event caused by every living thing in the Akashic Records (which, of course, have to be significantly bigger than the universe to keep track of every bacterium, every ant and every clam).

    • ze moo
    • Be that as it may, who is this “L Ron Habard” fellow, and has he written any major books?

      • I think “Habard” is the Greek version – their window display typically’ features’ a range of translations (each copy in this image is in a different language). Presumably, this is intended to demonstrate what an international phenomenon “Dianetics” is.

        On the other hand. since we are talking about the CofS it could be

        A) A typo, or
        B) A made-up cover so that they can report an enhanced, ‘number of different translations of Dianetics in the window” statistic, and not have to tie a grey rag around Santa’s arm.

    • Jon Atack

      Ho! Ho! Ho! he is, of course, St Nicholas, the patron saint of thieves, who spends the rest of the year protecting them when they ‘nick’ our stuff. Maybe we should ask the Scnists to be nice for one day of the year and give back some of the cash they’ve sucked out of the Dev-OTs.

  • Sid

    How do you get someone in the Sea Org to give you a day? I haven’t been able to get 5 minutes in over 15 years, and often there’s a handler or someone else around. Once we had part of a day but were so happy for that we just went out for an enjoyable time.

    • ze moo

      The fact that the enjoyable time came from being away from the SO may have been enough.

      • Free Minds, Free Hearts

        But it has taken 15 years! How do we get to the SO’s, I have that question too. My family member is getting to be so fundamentalist, Miscavige the greatest man ever, the new buildings such an improvement over the shabby buildings of 40 years ago, etc.

        • ze moo

          Give him/her one of the recommended books for Christmas.

          • Free Minds, Free Hearts

            I am just thinking of that!

          • I think Hoffer’s The True Believer is the best.

        • Jon Atack

          You can always use a type A handling. Grim but effective. Threaten to go to the media if your questions about scn are not handled in full. I have known it work – though it can mean that the clut dumps the member, who then won’t talk to you for a year or so. But they cannot do any scn until they ‘handle’ you, which is where being patient, friendly and insistent comes in.

    • Jon Atack

      Say that you’ve inherited a fortune and need to talk in private for a week. There is no other way.

      • Sid

        Haaa. Good one. I’d like if it were true.

  • villagedianne

    “By the time I quit intervention counseling, no one who had spoken to me in the previous five years returned to the cult.”

    Pretty good going Jon Atack! Not even Narconon’s phony claims can equal your actual successes.

    • Jon Atack

      Wow! I hadn’t thought of it like that. I must devise a new campaign ribbon to wear on my natty new coast guard uniform.

  • Ms. B. Haven

    I have never successfully helped someone extract themselves from the cult, although I am currently working on a few old friends. Here’s what worked for me when I self-extracted myself in the late 80’s. There were no internet or book resources that I was aware of. All I knew is that something was very wrong and I needed to get out of there. At that point I just knew that there was something wrong with the organization, I still wanted to be ‘clear’, ‘OT’, achieve some sort of spiritual freedom or at least some peace of mind. These are the things that attracted me to scientology in the first place. When I left, I thought that there might be some path for me to follow in the ‘freezone’ or some sort of indie group (although they weren’t called that back then).

    Since this was pre-internet for me, I didn’t immediately jump on the computer to search things out. What I did was discover some other interests to replace scientology. That was pretty easy to do, just about anything would be a substitute because outside of work (which I did a lot of to pay down my scientology related debts) about the only thing that I was doing was scientology training.

    I stumbled upon NPR on the radio. This was very different than the shock jock talk radio I would usually listen to while driving to and from work. It was a balanced, even keeled approach to the news and I started thinking a little differently after listening for a while. There was new music introduced on NPR. I remember being fascinated by Sinaed O’Connor’s I Do Not Want What I Have Not Got. The lyrics in several of the songs ran smack against cult thinking and obsessive clinging. The lyrics resonated enough to be another thing that helped me think outside the box a bit and see that there were more options out there than I had previously thought. Another thing that helped me ‘get some space’ was nature. Although I was living in the densely populated suburbs of So. Cal. at the time, I discovered mountain biking and sea kayaking and was able to ‘get away’ somewhat and see the wide world that was all around me. There is nothing like bobbing around in the ocean far off shore on a pitch black night surrounded by bioluminescence to expand one’s mind beyond the confines of a cult.

    I think the educational approach that Jon advocates is great, but for me the thing that really helped the most was just getting some distance. Of course I was already primed to make the break so maybe I had subtlety self-educated myself already. I think most members that are still in these days are either at the point where they are so over-regged any kind of break you can offer them would be welcomed (movie, vacation, hike, zoo, road trip, share a nice meal, etc.) or they are so far gone that they are unreachable. Sadly I think this is the case for those still ‘actively on lines’. For the under-the-radars, fence sitters, side-liners, doubters, and other PTS types, there is still hope. I like to be optimistic and I even hold out hope that the OSA folks reading these blogs and comments will be able to wake up one day. There is so much consistent irrefutable fact and truth presented here and elsewhere that it has got be having an effect in some cases.

    • I really like your post, Ms. B. Haven.
      My strategy is somewhere in the middle. I drop the seeds of doubt and leave them alone.
      And wait for Spring.

      • joan nieman

        Yes, the seeds of doubt will certainly flourish.

    • Ella Raitch

      Glad you mentioned music Ms Haven – which is very powerful. In a recent post on ESMB a member is trying to get a partner out of the cult and a long drive with good tunes was a recommendation, particularly music that reminds the person of their pre-cult life.

    • Jon Atack

      As I say, in the piece, you should balance every hour of thinking with one of activity – and floating on the ocean watching the bioluminescence does sound good. I do recommend movies, cycling and the like, and associating with people who are not and have never been involved. All too often, people leave and become obsessed. I remember meeting a guy who had left four years before. I had him talk about his life before (also recommended in the piece above) and after while he said that he hadn’t thought about Hubbard for 17 minutes – which was the first time in his waking life in those four years. With him, it was talking about art – his life before. The ‘educational’ approach that I recommend is for those who are helping others to examine a current involvement, which is very different from sorting yourself out after you’ve decided to leave.

      On a minor point, both the ‘indies’ and the ‘free zone’ were around from 1983 on. I was part of the Independents when the term was first used. Captain Bill promoted his ‘free zone’ from that time, too. It just depended where you lived. I was in East Grinstead, which leads me to another point – once you’ve left, recovery will be quicker if you don’t stay in a Scn environment.

      As you say, any break from the hypnotic rituals of frauditing or regging will help. And I too hold out hope for GOSA members. I can back with much trepidation, last year, mainly because I am concerned that when the cult finally does finish its decay there will be many lost souls. So, my principle concern is for those who still believe. Those of us who have managed to escape can help others along the ‘gradient scale’ to disillusionment and then to recovery.

      • Ms. B. Haven

        “The ‘educational’ approach that I recommend is for those who are helping others to examine a current involvement, which is very different from sorting yourself out after you’ve decided to leave.”

        This is an excellent point Jon. I tend to look at things from a personal perspective and that makes it difficult to ‘get into someone else’s shoes’ and see their viewpoint. Even though I considered myself a dedicated scientologist when I was in, I have always carried around at least a bit of skepticism. That skepticism allowed me to not be fully sucked in by the hypnotic effects of the cult. Besides, the auditing didn’t work for me. I was never able to find an engram or go exterior. That said, I have to wonder whether or not the ‘active’ members have no such skepticism. Even a little bit. Your suggestions about using the educational approach seem to be the way to go even though it is so tempting to just jump in and try to counter their beliefs with hard data and logic.

        I am wondering if you would consider writing something about scientology and its supposed relationship with Buddhism. These days I consider myself a Buddhist, albeit a lousy one, and I find elements of Buddhism to be just as weird as anything in scientology. Specifically the vajrayana aspects of Tibetan Buddhism. However odd these practices and belief may be, I find they produce good results in most practioners. I would love to hear you view on this as if I recall correctly you used to practice Buddhism or currently are practicing.

        Thanks for all you do, it is MUCH appreciated.
        MBH

        • Jon Atack

          Stephen Kent wrote a quick dismissal of Hubbard’s claims – Scientology’s Relationship with Eastern Religions. Hubbard knew nothing of Buddhism. My own brief involvement was with the Soto Zen school, but I do admit to have read the Digga Nikaya (at least through the Book of the Great Decease). When I joined Scn, I was given an Advance where the claim that he was Metteya was made. I immediately wrote to the Pali Text Society with the various claims – red-head born in the West, 2500 years after Gautama, and so on – and was told that every claim was false. Of course, if he had been Metteya, we’d all be in nirvana by now, as the prophecy says. I’ve mentioned elsewhere that John Sanborn kept Hymn of Asia from publication for 20 years because the opening statement ‘I am Metteya’ made him cringe. He sneaked it out with ‘Am I Metteya’ in the end (and left Scn after running pubs for over 20 years, when he saw one of Hubbard’s bank statements and realized that he’d made all that money for Hubbard while living on $5 a week himself).

          Have you read the chapter in Blue Sky on the religious ideas of Scn? The essential statement that there is no soul – anatta – is in absolute conflict with Hubbard’s R2-48 separateness, where Hubbard says he has proved that we are eternally individual.

          As to method, I befriended the Archbishop of Crete (a great privilege) on my trip to St Petersburg in September. The moment he walked into the lecture hall, I realized he was the first truly serene person I’d ever seen. It doesn’t make me believe in Jesus, however. The Archbishop asked about my belief, and I have it down to two words – compassion (of which I have a little) and humility (which I at least know I should have). He said, ‘Humility’ and he expressed it throughout the time we were together. I don’t know about the truth of ‘perennial philosophy’ (I tend to agree with the great taoist scholar Angus Graham that it aint so), but the practices of meditation/contemplation, compassion, self-questioning, fasting and the like do bring about a more peaceful state of mind. Devotional means – which I simply cannot manage, such is my disbelief! – also seem to be effective – ‘self-noughting’. I’ve read a huge amount of mystical texts – I have no time for organized religion, but every now and then some gem of self-observation becomes evident. I’ve translated the Tao Te Ching character by character and hope to publish it soon – but it is as a meditation, a text to consider, that I find it helpful. I can also say that focusing on Scn is not good for the soul (or no soul), and I have been utterly unable to find the slightest peace since I returned, but I am entirely grateful that my return has been welcomed so graciously.

          Big fan of the Dali Lama’s Mind-Life conferences too – the best book on neuropsychology I’ve read (and I admit to having read a few) is the Goleman collaboration, and his book with Ekman is fine, too. Tibetan Buddhism itself baffles my tiny mind, however.

          • Ms. B. Haven

            Thanks for your thoughtful reply Jon.

            “Have you read the chapter in Blue Sky on the religious ideas of Scn?”
            I really need to re-read this. Perhaps I will retain a bit more if I do. There are also many other readings and films I need to familiarize myself with. So much to do, so little time.

            “As to method, I befriended the Archbishop of Crete (a great privilege) on my trip to St Petersburg in September. The moment he walked into the lecture hall, I realized he was the first truly serene person I’d ever seen. It doesn’t make me believe in Jesus,”
            This is really a profound, down to earth view. One can find all sorts of wisdom and serenity from many sources and traditions. One can appreciate the wisdom and serenity from these sources without having to be on that same path. In fact, it may be the most reliable touchstone that one is thoroughly detaching from ‘cult-think’ and dogmatic views while accepting other’s views while not necessarily adopting those views.

            “I can also say that focusing on Scn is not good for the soul (or no soul), and I have been utterly unable to find the slightest peace since I returned, but I am entirely grateful that my return has been welcomed so graciously.

            I believe that you recently wrote that you estimated 99% of those who have left the cult are silent on the subject. That was the case for me until a couple of years ago. I quietly left and just wanted to get on with my life and stay as far away from the cult as possible. Despite my efforts to stay concealed they managed to find me and attempt a ‘recovery’ after more than 25 years absence. My rage at this was immense and prompted me to search the internet to see about the current state of affairs and it effectively ended my silence. The rage has subsided considerably and has been transformed (somewhat) into compassion. I feel it is a personal responsibility to share my story no matter how insignificant it is in the hope of benefiting others so that they will be able to extract themselves or avoid entering the trap door. One can only hope that someone out there is being helped. For me that is enough to keep going for now. You are right though, there is no peace to be had in this sort of activity.

            Also, I would add to your list of two virtuous items. Courage. You have gone ABOVE AND BEYOND in that dept.

            I am looking forward to reading your translation of the Tao Te Ching. My favorite version is by Red Pine. It is nice to see how others interpret the passages. They can indeed be a profound meditation.

            • Jon Atack

              Thank you! I estimate that about three million people have received auditing since 1950. Perhaps 250,000 have been traumatised, often in very subtle ways. One ex member sent me a letter to the clut where she justified her ‘no case gain’. It made me weep – they all but destroyed her life and here she is apologising. It is so heartening to hear that others are joining in to compassionately help those still ensnared, and hopefully quieten down the rage that is still such a feature of the ‘critics’.

              I’m not sure about ‘courage’. It was a battlefield for 16 years. By the end – when I couldn’t walk away without abject defeat (because you can’t just say, ‘okay stop suing me’ to a clut) – I was thoroughly traumatised because a number of my closest friends ganged up and added to the litigation! It was demoralising, but it really did come down to facing the attack or shuffling off this mortal coil. I’m no good at shuffling, but that’s about as courageous as I get!

              Part of my tao is at my old, abandoned website jonatack.com. I just need to take a day to finish the cover.Yes, Red Pine is very good (and not just the tao), and, as you say, part of the beauty of the text is in the multitude of interpretations. I wrote a version as therapy to bring my head out of the clut, back in 1984 (it is truly awful). I read 16 versions and worked on a verse a night for months. Subsequently, I’ve read another 30 or 40 translations, and many commentaries (I love Fung Yu Lan, Angus Graham, Max Kaltenmark and Holmes Welch, among others). I ended up spending a few years going through Jonathan Star’s character by character translation, and came to believe that it is simply wrong to translate essential terms, because the text explains them. Among the worst is t’ien, which is always given as ‘heaven’, but the Chinese notion of heaven (the order of the world) has nothing to do with the place that westerners want to go. As to translating tao as ‘the way’ or te as ‘virtue’ or ‘power’ – simply wrong. But don’t get me started!

  • Edward Whalley

    diary of a Drug Fiend is NOtT an autobiography! it’s a novel.. and why is Theory andPractise ‘dreadful’?

  • villagedianne

    Life of Brian is such an Awesome movie!

    Brian: Please, please, please listen! I’ve got one or two things to say.

    The Crowd: Tell us! Tell us both of them!

    Brian: Look, you’ve got it all wrong! You don’t NEED to follow ME, You don’t NEED to follow ANYBODY! You’ve got to think for your selves! You’re ALL individuals!

    The Crowd: Yes! We’re all individuals!

    Brian: You’re all different!

    The Crowd: Yes, we ARE all different!

    Man in crowd: I’m not…

    The Crowd: Sch!

    And I’m happy you mentioned “Truth be Told”. I was a background actor in that movie an it was great to be associated with the film. I’m definitely going to email Gregorio Smith with a link to this article!

    • ze moo

      One of my favorite movies is Brazil, perhaps Terry Gilliam’s finest. So many great bits in Life of Brian. ‘He’s not the messiah, he’s a naughty boy’.

      • villagedianne

        Yes I love that quote. I changed “messiah” to “pope” and used it about AGP!

    • Jon Atack

      That final ‘I’m not’ is one of the great moments in both film and philosophy. They are such clever people (except for Graham Chapman who isn’t in the same way that Alma Cogan isn’t, if I remember my scripture). Gregorio is a genius.

  • Bob

    Great article by Jon as usual as he tackles a tough subject with a very practical approach. Also movies that fit in are Idiocracy with Luke Wilson, Bowfinger with Steve Martin and Eddy Murphy(this poked fun directly at the cherch), The Happening with Mark Wahlberg and Yes Man with Jim Carrie and Zoe Deschanel. Having first hand experiences almost everyday with what can and cannot be said to a clam I think Jon hit it right on the nail regarding never challenge the clams beliefs directly.
    Thanks again Jon for your tireless research and spot on insights.

    • Ms. B. Haven

      I would nominate another Jim Carrie classic: The Truman Show. I think this one would have a subtle effect regarding looking beyond mere appearances and seeing what is real. It correlates nicely with one of my favorite Hubbardisms: Look don’t Listen.

      • Bob

        I thought of that. I agree, one of Jim’s best.

  • Panopea Abrupta

    Partly suggested by Jon’s excellent article and partly by Idries Shah who wrote on Nassreddin:

    How to Save a $cientologist

    One day, Lord Hubris fell into the river. Since he didn’t know how to swim, he was about to drown. The villagers gathered by the river bank trying to save him.
    `Give me your hand, give me your hand.’ they were all shouting. But the man was not extending his hand. At that time Nasreddin Hodja happened to be passing by.
    `Hodja Effendi,’ said the good samaritans, `the $cientologist fell into the water. He is going to drown. He is not giving his hand.’
    `Let me try.’ said the Hodja. `Effendi, effendi,’ he yelled to the man bobbing in the water, `take my hand!’ To this, Lord Hubris immediately extended his hand and grabbed Hodja’s arm. The Hodja and the people around were now able to pull him off the water.
    `You see,’ the Hodja clarified, `he is a $cientologist, he is more practised in taking than giving.’

    • FromPolandWithLove

      Brilliant !!!! 🙂

    • Frodis73

      Lol!

    • joan nieman

      Clever little story Pan.

    • Jon Atack

      How true. I love Shah – though I don’t subscribe to magical thinking, these days – I’ve read a dozen of his books and he led me to his fellow Sufis – I’ve just finished yet another compilation of Rumi poems – such wonder (‘lovers do not meet; they’re in each other all along’).

      My favourite Nasrudin story, which has nothing to do with this (or does it?) is when a neighbour finds Nasrudin searching for his keys under a streetlamp. The neighbour innocently asks if this is where Nasrudin lost them, and Nasrudin explains that there is no light where he lost them. Come to think of it, this is rather like Scn, too…

  • Tracy Schmitz

    GREAT IDEAS AND VERY THOROUGH PLAN TO GET A cultie out of his/her cult… however, how could this work for a HUGE celebrity like the public face of this cult? i.e. you know who mr.cruise?.. i mean he’s surrounded 24/7 by butt kissers and scientologists… constantly working on movies, whether pre-production, production or post production, i seriously doubt he would have the time or inclination to do ANY soul searching or recovery! i mean he’s been indoctrinated since 1987! and not just as a regular cultie but a famous one! … add in he would have to admit and be okay with the fact that mr.movie star was totally duped and fleeced by this cult and it’s leader! don’t know if his ego mixed with his insecurity could handle it! not to forget he would have to admit that he enjoyed immensely or at least at the very least tolerated totally inappropriate action from his “religion’ in medals being given to him, surprise birthday parties, work done on his house, cars, trailers, etcetera. he would have to admit to himself this was wrong for him to accept such acts from his religion or ANY religion….ALSO for years in fact decades NOT KNOWING? about all the abuse or if “hearing about it’ NOT BELIEVING any of it was going on and NEVER even trying to find out the truth! don’t think he has the courage and integrity as a person to admit massive wrong or the humility to beg and request forgiveness from the public.. that would be a sign of weakness! i just don’t see how cruise by himself or someone showing him the way will EVER have the “light bulb” turn on and “aha” moment….true, some scientologists hardcore ones were involved for decades and have left, but cruise world’s biggest movie star celeb is a entirely different story

    • Phil McKraken

      This, absolutely. As the most famous face of Scientology, he has more to answer for in an honest accounting than just about anyone else. This is why there will never be a public accounting by him for what he has been associated with. It is just too much of stripping away of the public persona of confident righteousness.

    • Frodis73

      This is one reason I want the end of the cult to be very public & messy. I want the celebs, esp TC, to answer for ‘their crimes’. lol. Seriously though, to be so willfully blind about the abuse while taking advantage of the perks just gets my blood boiling. TC is such a fanatic at this point I have lost hope he will ever see the light. I had hope that Media Lush was right & that he might split before MI5 opens…now I don’t think so. He’s going to go down with the ship.

    • You have to remember something about these actors – they might shine but in many ways they’re dim bulbs. Travolta has a 6th grade education, I believe. So he can fly a jet, wonderful. You can train a monkey to do things, too. He’s a great dancer, but his life revolves around his dick, apparently. Cruise was high school buddies with people like Emilio Estevez – just not a damned genius (I wrote a book about the Sheens). I’m perfectly happy for Cruise – who’s been like a Cruise missile in destroying $cientology with his publicly insane behavior – to keep doing what he’s doing, and I don’t give a flip if he’s the lasting idiot $cientologist standing.

  • valshifter

    Satanology has a grip on you and is hard to get rid of, once you are involved with it. so is better not to even start. do not touch it with a 100 yard stick.
    now am curious about all those movies mentioned above now I will look for them and watch some.

  • Conan

    Jon,

    Great recommendations. I never had a chance to thank you for your good works, exposing Hubbard and his insane cult of fanatics. So here. Thank you Jon Atack!

    I would add to your recommendations The Gulag Archipelago, from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleksandr_Solzhenitsyn

    I think the book is particularly applicable to the SO execs and others members who went through the RPF prison and torture camps.

    Chapter 3 “The Interrogation” describes several key psychological methods of torture. all of which you will find being used by Miscavige on So Org members, but which were started by Hubbard on the ships.

    Here is a link: http://distributedrepublic.net/archives/2005/05/01/gulag-interrogation/

  • You might also try exposing them to just about any of the writers from the New Thought Movement of the late 1800s, early 1900s. Guys like Charles F. Haanel, William Atkinson and others have many, many parallels with Scn. Haanel wrote The Master Key System consisting of 24 lessons, giving theory and then an exercise. The very first lesson is the equivalent of OT TR-0, written about 1910. The key may not be to counter their beliefs but show them that many others were saying essentially the same things.

  • 0tessa

    Just a hypothesis, though based on quite some experience with many Scientologists: the most fanatic Scientologists are those that have a problem with study and have not done any serious studying after highschool, and some did not do even that, they are not used to philosophical thinking, or psychological, and have not done most of the Scientology training. Those Scientologists that did study (e.g. advanced and/or academical) before getting into Scientology are much less or not at all fanatic (narrowminded) and leave the cult earlier.
    IQ (how crude a measure it might be) is a certain yardstick. It shows that Scientogy does not increase IQ, otherwise everybody would leave the cult after a certain amount of training and auditing.
    Miscavige, COB, is a shining example of this: no education to speak of, no manners, no civilisation, etc., but the highest in ranking and according to some reports, ‘hating’ those with a higher eduction.

    • Stacy

      I agree with your hypothesis on everything but IQ.

      Studying, and staying in the habit of studying and keeping an open mind, is hard work. It’s easy for even intelligent people to “rest on their laurels” if they aren’t in the habit of studying and learning.

      • Eclipse-girl

        When people challenge the IQ or intelligence of some the adherents. I think of Bruce Hinds.

        He was a grad student in Physics as he started in $cientology.
        He stayed with $cientology until he was OT VII or OT VIII

        I do not think he is a dumb person. I think he was vulnerable and preyed upn.
        Reading though most (if not all) of Jon’s articles for the Bunker, you realize that $cientology has perfected the art of preying on people. But it takes many things coming to together at the same time for the action to work.
        Only a small % of people fall deeply into $cientology.

        • Science Doc

          Keep in mind that many academics have very narrow intellects. Someone can understand physics very well but be completely incompetent with money or people.

          • Robert Eckert

            James Watson, recently back in the news for auctioning off his Nobel Prize, comes to mind.

            • Eclipse-girl

              My husband has met Dr Watson.
              Dr Watson is an ass, and always has been.

            • Science Doc

              He is indeed. But he’s not alone.

            • Eclipse-girl

              No, he is not. Jerks abound in this world.

              Having a PhD does not mean a thing about a personality.

            • 0tessa

              Totally agree.

          • Eclipse-girl

            Off Topic –
            That is why I am angry at the new president of the U Wis system. He wants to having a sweeping review of how many things, including the reduction of breadth credits for undergrad degrees. One reason for the breadth credits has been to make the individual more broad minded and learn how to learn various subjects.

            • Science Doc

              This is a battle at most universities. Not sure if he’s an engineer, but often happens with engineers at the helm.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Education is expensive.

              I want the state to kick in more, but the legislature has always felt that the UW turns out liberals, and there is an education bias toward progressivism at the U W.

              Now, the legislature only wants people in degrees that will guarantee them jobs.
              We need more engineers and less English majors. Tell that to Garrison Keillor.

            • ze moo

              Scott Walkers mindset is trying to spread.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Please don’t let it.

          • Eclipse-girl

            I know a second reply…. (Watson is particularly vile to me because of his dismissal of the importance of the work of Rosalind Frankin)

            Watson has claimed he claimed he needed to sell his award because he couldn’t live on his academic income. I assume he is an professor emeritus at ?Harvard.
            Most professors do not get Nobel Prizes, not do they often earn emeritus status.
            Most people know they have to save for retirement.

            Why didn’t Watson?

            • I’ve formulated a working hypothesis: According to the Wiki, he retired as chancellor of the Cold Spring Harbor Lab in 2007, after his unscientific and bullsh*t views on race and intelligence became known, but he’s a chancellor emeritus, whatever that is. I suspect that since then, he hasn’t been popular on the lecture circuit, which would be a drop in income, and the sale of the Nobel is probably a response to that. Also, greedy children or his current spouse would be another reason as well.

            • Eclipse-girl

              I have no idea of his personal life.

              I still think it was wrong not to plan for an eventual loss of income.
              Yes, it came earlier than he thought it would but as Science Doc said having a PhD is not a guarantee have to manage their money.

            • If you compared his latter years with that of his partner-in-science, Sir Francis, he is pretty wanting in terms of achievement.

              The CPH lab was and is the Mecca of what used to be called genetics and is now properly termed molecular genetics which is why he was appointed to it after winning his Noble. I would assume that as an academic position it would have some sort of retirement or pension plan, or his salary would be taxed for SS and Medicare, the maximum SS would be around 2 grand a month
              .
              I might do the research later on today, but my intuition says that since his retirement and emeritus appointment, he isn’t a popular speaker at American Colleges and Universities anymore, and it’s easy money if you get all your expenses paid and a 40 or 50K$ fee to talk for an hour or two. Ten or twelve of them, and we’re looking at real money.

              As for his inability to plan ahead, you find that with a lot of arrogant, creative types. He probably felt that his position was a sinecure, and to lose that position and lecturing fees would produce a serious blow to his income stream.

              I saw Sir Francis talk at my undergrad, and If I’d known then that he had done LSD, I would’ve taken him to my dorm and have my friends treat him to some bong hits later that evening.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Thanks. I know of Cold Spring Harbor, and have high regards for Dr Crick.

              Unfortunately, I also know a few arrogant people.

              Mr E and I have been luckier than many, but we are still savers. You can’t predict the future.

            • Franklin certainly deserved a large measure of the credit that went to Watson and Crick. Without her brilliant work they would not have had the basic information that enabled them to work out the structure of DNA.

              Unfortunately (as the tragedy of Alan Turing amply demonstrates) clever people are subject to the social attitudes of their age, too – including those which we now see as bigoted.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Rosalind also died several years before the Nobel was presented and therefore exempt from the prize. It is not awarded posthumously.

              Crick has always stated that been gracious about acknowledging Ms Frankin. I am not sure he was aware of that when the photo / picture was shared it was shared without her knowledge.

              I am very much aware of the Turing tragedy. Turing was a genius. Computer Science owes a great deal to Mr Turing. I still think he should be on a british bank note.

          • scnethics

            Bruce Hines is not that kind of academic. You can see in his interviews that he is a thoughtful person, and a gifted communicator.

          • 0tessa

            Yes, they might lack in social and emotional intelligence.

        • Stacy

          When looking at human behavior no theory or hypothesis can ever hope to encompass all the necessary variables. Human behavior is too complex.

          But Otessa’s hypothesis is likely addressing several variables of the CoS adherent equation.

        • 0tessa

          I know of such a person: graduated in physics, he continued up to OT VIII – only after that he finally admitted it was a waste of time. During all of this studying of Scientology he never was on staff or very active in the other front-acitivities. Remained more of a outsider though. What brought him to Scientology was his interest in eastern philosophy (Buddhism). This, combined with his interest in the scientific method and technology, made him surrender to Scientology.

      • My view is that intelligence (or the lack of it) is irrelevant because Scientology simply does not operate on a rational basis.

        You are brought into it by the exercise of social-psychological manipulation – for example being told that the results of your personality test show that you are in a terrible state, but that Scientology can improve your life in definite ways, and you should give it a chance. You are told not to be critical, and judge by results. Your decision to join is celebrated by all present with unconditional approval.

        This approach works exclusively on your insecurities and your emotions. There is nothing there to engage your intellect at all.

        Each stage of a Scientologists ‘progress’ is marked by mounting social and psychological pressure (and ‘hard sell’ techniques). This is what brings people in, and keeps them there. It can’t be the doctrines, after all, because nobody is aware of any of these at the beginning, and only a tiny minority of Scientologist are (supposed to be) aware of the ‘advanced’ teachings.

        For example, OT3 only ‘takes’ after years of indoctrination in a closed, manipulative social environment (and often fails, even then). Today (thanks to the ‘net) everyone knows the Xenu story – so it can be clearly seen that, when it can be judged on its merits, in an environment free from social and psychological pressure to conform, people simply laugh and walk away.

        If you could perform an experiment in an alternative universe I am sure that you could change the doctrines of Scientology significantly without affecting the membership or the income as long as you did mess with the ideas that underpin the social control mechanisms.

        We all do things that we know are stupid for irrational reasons to do with emotions and basic drives. It’s not that we have a low IQ on these occasions – it’s just that we are not applying it to the problem at hand.

        Gentlemen are often accused of thinking with… well… an item of their anatomy that is not their brain. The same principle applies here.

        • Stacy

          Very well stated. I agree with you completely. I don’t think intellect has any bearing on entering CoS or choosing to stay. I don’t think the mechanisms that keep people there will be exactly the same for anyone, but if intellect plays any part, it will be very small.

    • Science Doc

      I think Mike Rinder has said that COB is intelligent and well read. I find th second part hard to believe, but not the first part. I would take him for an insecure poser with little to no traditional education and certainly no appreciation of the arts and sciences. Probably very smart within a confined set of circumstances. His limitations become apparent when he’s interviewed by Kopel or responding in writing to the TBT about the Slappiness Rundown. Outside of his comfort space he is very naive.

      • HillieOnTheBeach

        “I think Mike Rinder has said that COB is intelligent and well read.”

        As far as the well read aspect, I’m sincerely curious to know if that’s not the result of things that Rinder said previously that has morphed into something else.

        I distinctly remember him saying that Miscavige has an extensive vocabulary but he was specifically referring to his vocabulary of obscenities.

      • Eclipse-girl

        I have read from others that Lil boy Davey is crafty.
        He may be well read, too.
        It just is so hard to claim intelligence when we watchers see the repeated foot bullets.

        If you read Mike Rinder’s blog daily, you just have to ask What The Heck is going on?
        Today’s piece is about giving people a free 6 month IAS subscription so they can get back on course
        Yesterday’s article was about getting one course – now – before the prices raise on Dec 31

      • scnethics

        When an infantile sociopath reads broadly, he pulls out what he can use to further his ends (which may be nothing more than being able to recognize references well-read people make to the material in their written and spoken communication) and discards all the rest. 🙂

        • Hitler read to confirm his own opinions and prejudices, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that was true of the Deadly Dwarf as well. Plus, he probably has a lot of time to read when he takes a break from micro-managing his empire or finishes approving the latest 5,000 words of Shermanspeak for the grads to use on Graduation Night.

      • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

        “….COB is…..well read….”

        Best to see what magazines and newspapers and which sections of those he reads to judge him.

        I doubt he reads the NY Times bestsellers non-fiction routinely.

        Mark Fisher and others would know his reading list.

      • Observer

        I don’t know him personally, of course, but he strikes me as having average intelligence but exceptional predatory cunning. Like his predecessor.

      • Jgg2012

        “COB is intelligent and well read” Did he ever read Bare Faced Messiah?

        • Robert Eckert

          Why would he have to read it? He lived it.

    • I remember talking to actress Anne Archer one day outside the AOLA. She was doing the Key to Life course. She basically told me she couldn’t study worth a flip and had a horrible education. Anne’s very pretty and that got her a long way in Hollywood, as the daughter of another very pretty actress (Marjorie Lord), but she’s just not very bright – that’s always been my impression. That’s why I often point out that $cientology’s main proponents are actors, who need other people’s lines to recite from their pretty faces. $cientology is a facade and they have facades as ideals.

      • 0tessa

        Also Tom Cruise does not have the benefits of some serious education, if I remember correctly.

        • I gotchur Tom Cruise right here… http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/Tom_Cruise

        • villagedianne

          And Cruise seems kind of lost without a script.

        • Eclipse-girl

          Tom Cruise at least got HS diploma.
          He did not attend graduation.

          • BosonStark

            I think Cruise came up a few months short of finishing high school, but because he went away to do a movie, they gave him his diploma. He was never a very good student, which he later said was because of his dyslexia. Travolta left high school to pursue acting.

            • Eclipse-girl

              I agree he was not a great student.

              IIRC, the Andrew Morton Bio had Tom Cruise doing some type of theater the night of his HS graduation. He did not get his first film until after he moved to NYC.

    • scnethics

      As Steve Hassan points out, a smart person is able to find ways to explain away the shortcomings in the doctrine, which can make it more difficult to get them out. There are some very smart, educated people who have fallen for scientology, some of them spending their lives in the SO.

      I think people join cults because they are vulnerable. So I’ll throw out another hypothesis, which is that the people most likely to be fanatical scientologists are the inner-self-loathers. These people have the most to lose if scientology is not true. These are the people who absolutely cannot live with the truth about themselves, or the thought that they are stuck being who they are.

      • 0tessa

        IQ as a notion has several aspects. There are e.g. social, emotional and analytical intelligence.
        I agree with the vulnerability part. There must be certain psychological factors at work for a person to enter something like Scientology. But seeing the material that is to be studied, the factual impossibility to disagree etc., would be enough I think to make a reasonably intelligent person look for the exit. (I have seen it happen.) I reckon the number of people leaving the cult within half a year must be much greater than the number staying in.
        I would like to maintain that those members with a higher education and maybe with a certain level of social and emotional intelligence are less fanatical about it. They would have more trouble with the management culture prevalent right now in the cult. I have seen it happening in companies with an aggressive management style where people got psychologically abused: the best employees with a social personality left as soon as possbile, while the more anti-social or sub-social personalities stayed on (and those were always a minority).

        • scnethics

          For the reasons you list, I don’t think *anyone* is getting into scientology these days. Back in the day, it was different.

          You can spend quite a bit of time in scientology before you run into “the factual impossibility to disagree”. New people are presented with scientology as a set of tools that you can learn and try out. The attitude is: if they work, great, and if not, then just throw it away. New people are love-bombed and what they are exposed to is limited in every way.

          Maybe I am deficient in one of those aspects of IQ and that could be part of why I got in.

          There is this factor that I’ve found people who haven’t been in a cult find difficult to accept. There’s a point when you fall into a cult where you kind of give yourself over to it. You do this because you have a mind-altering experience that impresses you or you are just desperate for change and so you decide to go in heads first and don’t see the danger in that (few people realize that there is a danger in spending hours a day surrounded by cult members doing cult activities). Once you give yourself over to it, there’s this short-circuiting that happens in your mind. When you see something that isn’t right, like for instance that you must get permission to go to the bathroom while on course, you convince yourself that it must be OK. The thinking goes something like this: “Hmmm, I don’t like this. Oh well, Hubbard decided it should be done this way and I’m sure there is a good reason. Maybe he found that it was best to completely control a student’s time while they were on course, and that this leads to best results and that’s why it’s done this way. I should just do it. What’s the big deal?” It goes like that for everything. You assume that there are good reasons for everything, and there are, you just don’t realize the goal is to gradually get you under more and more control.

          On the outside, it appears that scientologists are weak-minded, and when it comes to scientology, they most certainly are – due to this short-circuiting in their thinking.

          If a smart, educated person spends enough time “trying it out”, and has a mind-altering experience, they might give themselves over. Once they do, their smarts and education won’t protect them anymore, until they have a particularly jarring experience. The day to day of heavy regging and ethics in the name of saving mankind is pretty easy to swallow. In this way, these people have as much of a chance of becoming fanatical as anyone else.

  • Dee Findlay-DeElizabethan

    So much out there and available to help. Thank you Jon for the extensive list.
    I once saw a cult movie in the early ’80’s, possible moonies, that did a number on me and I saw for myself some similarities. I was very affected, but not enough to get me out. Just one movie opened my eyes, as I was extremely close to a breaking point and never quite forgot about that. I was so impressed with the similarities and it did help me eventually.

    • Frodis73

      Thanks for sharing that story as I always wonder how somebody in can’t see the similarities in their own life with sci compared to other cults, etc.

      • Dee Findlay-DeElizabethan

        Thanks. The problem is having the opportunity to see a film like this or read a book. I was in a special position and a trusted ally, able to confront ‘enemies’ but I almost broke with one movie. I wasn’t familiar with other cults except what I heard form Scn. No doubt if a scio saw or read some of this stuff they would see it for themselves. Those in, have no opportunity or willingness to see or read this material. Until something gets them out a bit and have the will to question and look. Mind control is a damning condition. One can decontaminate oneself when ready, through material like Jon suggests, which can shorten the process considerably.

        • It seems to me that world-views like Scientology are inherently implausible, which is why the CofS require believers to cut themselves off from all discourse with the wider world. Scientologists are ‘encouraged’ to only associate with other Scientologists, only read Hubbard’s books, only watch CofS films &c.

          The solution to the problems of bringing committed Scientologists to the realisation that Hubbard’s creation nonsense is simply to bring them into that wider world. The experiences they have there will naturally erode doctrines which don’t make sense and practices which don’t work (especially if they have some fun in the process).

          The problem, of course, is that the CofS has evolved to prevent interaction and dialogue with outsiders at all costs. Planting the occasional seed is one thing, providing an environment where it can germinate and grow is quite another.

          I wonder if the CofS itself is not the proximate cause of disaffected Scientologists. Eventually, they apply too much pressure on people so that they either leave to escape the stress, or are declared when they are no longer productive.

          In other words, do all the efforts of outsiders to penetrate the Scientology mindset actually motivate people to leave, or do they provide a justification to those Scientologists who just take the pressure any more (or are thrown out)?

          It seems to me, from many accounts by exe’s given here, that people commonly encounter situations and texts which raise doubts – and suppress them, often for years. They only begin to give this material credence when their career in the CofS has reached rock bottom, and they can’t take any more.

          • Dee Findlay-DeElizabethan

            Excellent, thanks! True, and everyone has a little different rock bottom point to hit.

          • ze moo

            If there is a ‘most common’ reason for clams to escape, it is the bad treatment of themselves or others. In a good scam, everyone is happy, in $cientology everyone is kept busy studying the wit and wisdom of Lroon. Thought stopping is the premise and end phenomenon of the clampire.

            One reg that went too far, asked for that 3rd mortgage or another child for the Sea Org or some staff demanding another 10 hours of expensive sec checks or re-re-redoing a level you paid for 10 years ago is the straw that can break the camels back.

            I do think that the slow desertion of the public is the death knell of the clams. They all get the reging and re-re-redoing and the sec checks and in the past skilled staff would know when to back off. There is no backing off now. Thursday 2pm is just too close. With fewer and fewer of the flock to fleece, those still in must be under terrific pressure to keep staff stats up, at the expense of keeping members and any future.

            • In the ‘glory days’ under Hubbard, when Scientology could suppress the mass media, they could always recruit new members, so a high turnover did not matter. It was, in fact, more profitable because new recruits bring new capital which they can fleeced of.

              The “[…] desertion of the clams” (I like that) has always taken pace. What is new is that deserters can no longer be replaced. Consequently (as you say) the registrars are required to put ever-increasing financial pressure on ever-fewer members.

              It’s like Christmas tree lights. Every time one of the bulbs fails it raises the voltage in all the others slightly, which shortens their life. Eventually, you reach to point where there is so much power flowing through the string, that the remainder all go ‘pop’ together. In the same way, every time a Scientologist leaves, more pressure is applied to the others.

          • Free Minds, Free Hearts

            This is a great post, Once Born. Very interesting point that the person may need to already have some doubt, and be more willing to look at these other pieces of information when they are ready to justify leaving.

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Dee that is very interesting. The seeds were planted although it took years for the plant to grow.

  • i-Betty

    How generous of Jon to share his process and steps with us 🙂

    • Eclipse-girl

      Hope you are on the mend

      • i-Betty

        Thanks so much, E-G 🙂 It’s the British way to say, “Oh I’m much better now, thank you!” but I’m among friends – my throat feels like I’ve swallowed glass shards!

        • Eclipse-girl

          Then give yourself the physical rest that your body needs.
          Stay in bed and watch TV or bunker vids or read a book.
          what genre do you enjoy and I am sure we can get a number of suggestions?

          I know your family is in the surrounding area. Will they deliver food to you?

          I would recommend hot tea with lemon but I think you are probably doing that, already.

          • i-Betty

            Oh wow, I must be feeling awful because your kindness made me teary. Thank you – really. My most excellent mother made me a hot brandy and ginger and sent me to bed for the afternoon, and when I came down she’d been back and taken the laundry away 🙂 I’m on probably my 12th run-through of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series so I feel like I’m with much-loved friends. x

            • Eclipse-girl

              I am particularly fond of the Nac Mac Feegles

              I am glad there is someone taking care of you. I am jealous you still have your mom.

            • i-Betty

              Wee Jock Poo-Pong McPlop? 🙂

              I’m so sorry you no longer have your mum. It must be especially hard at this time of year.

            • Eclipse-girl

              It has been a very long time since my parents passed.
              They both saw my daughter as an infant and knew my brother’s wife was pregnant. Mom saw both her grand daughters.
              I dream of my parents. The dreams are rare now, but I relish them

              I want to be a Kelda, but I am sure it is not as fun as it is described.

            • i-Betty

              Oh, I don’t know — giving birth to hundreds of baby Feegles at a time sounds a breeze, plus you are allowed to be the size of a basketball and nobody calls you fat!

              Ah, at least your mum saw both her grand daughters, E-G. That must mean the world to you.

            • Eclipse-girl

              It does.

              I am who I am (Popeye ?) because of my life.
              My parents were an important part of my life.
              I wish my daughter had know each of them Now, she only has the stories that we can share with her and her cousins.

        • Juicer77

          In a shot glass: 1 tbsp. lemon juice, 1 tbsp. honey, heavy dash of cayenne pepper on top. Down it. Really works on a sore throat/coughing. Feel better!

          • i-Betty

            Thanks so much, you’re all lovely 🙂 Hot brandy and ginger went down a storm at lunchtime. x

            • beauty for ashes

              that sound so good! did you use fresh ginger? recipe please! i’ve had migraines the past few days, and that sounds wonderbar!
              oh and a little sad that the silent night didn’t work out. but really proud of what miss tia did!
              i hope you do something else with your lovely voice, like read the “little davey(i lost the link but pretty well known) stories”

            • Robert Eckert

              I can’t do brandy anymore but I’ve been alternating ginger ale and Earl Grey with honey.

  • Frodis73

    I really love ‘Saturdays with Jon’ as he really helps us that have never been in understand. I have always wondered if scientologists ever read stories about North Korea or books like 1984 and have them get through to them. I find it fascinating that Jon said typically they just don’t see the comparisons. It just goes to show what an uphill battle it is to try and help somebody out of the mindf*** that is scientology.
    Now I have some more books & movies to add to my ever growing list!

    • Cosmo Pidgeon

      It’s true. When I was in I thought other religions were for the most part silly as they were not based on “science”, and “workable technology”. As far as North Korea goes , Hubbard himself said the most effective for of government was a “benevolent dictatorship”. And of course we all knew he was mankind’s best friend. What started me out was constantly being the victim of “ethics tech” applied by (in my view) out ethic people. It doesn’t work and only benefits the person using it on you. I eventually just refused to be “handled” any longer. You know f#$% off you dim witted moron. Then boy oh boy do you get to see the crazy side of Scientology. And what’s funny is that I’m really an OK guy and my moral and ethical views and actions have only improved since blowing off these self appointed inquisitors.

      • Stacy

        ” And what’s funny is that I’m really an OK guy and my moral and ethical views and actions have only improved since blowing off these self appointed inquisitors.”

        You seem like a way better than just OK guy Cosmo.

        Doing great.

        • Cosmo Pidgeon

          Thanks Stacy, You’re very kind.

          • Stacy

            You’ve been fun and interesting to talk to. I’ve very much enjoyed getting to know you the little bit that I have over the past few months.

            How’s Demon Haunted World going?

            • Cosmo Pidgeon

              Same here Stacy, I mean it. You are a bright and wonderful woman. If I say anymore I’m going to sound like I’m hitting on you. I’m about 3/4 through Demon Haunted World . This may sound silly but it has been the most illuminating and thought provoking book I can remember. I usually read history , historical biography, and occasional fiction. But this book has helped end the final mysteries of the “wins” I had in Scientology. Something that has perplexed me for years. Should be on the list discussed today.

            • Stacy

              Thank you, that’s very sweet of you to say. I may be blushing. ☺️

              I agree. Carl Sagan should definitely be on the list. I’m glad it’s been helping you. I found it so fascinating and just loved it.

      • Jon Atack

        Not only was he the ‘benevolent’ dictator, but Scn is also ‘the most ethical group on the planet’ (though compare this to Mary Sue Hubbard’s 200 page confession – the Stipulation in Evidence).

    • pluvo

      I read “1984” when I was in the Sea Org. When I saw some parallels I was horrified till the mechanism of the cognitive dissonance took over.

    • Jon Atack

      Cognitive dissonance. For which see Festinger’s marvellous When Prophecy Fails and marvel that the woman who led the flying saucer cult which is its subject had a live-in Scientology author. Eventually, the critical mass becomes too much. North Korea is a very good point. I saw a fine documentary about a GI who defected there, and was still enthusiastic (I’d say ‘enthused’ but Tony would tell me off!). Like Meet the Mormons – there is no need to actually criticise the believers, because it is patently obvious how weird they are.

  • Dale A.

    There is an interesting article over at Salon.com about science and the mindfulness tradition. It doesn’t address Scientology, but does address common concerns: ” People who are drawn to mindfulness programs are there for a variety of reasons and in response to all sorts of promises”

  • If I only had a day, I don’t know if I’d spend time on Brazil. While it’s great movie, someone behind the Scientology mental filter is likely to re-purpose various elements: Torturers = psychs; bureaucracy = conspiracy of 12 bankers, SMERSH and minions; dream sequences = discovering your inner Thetan…

    I recall that Steven Ferry, CoS photographer and Wikipedia editor under a drawer of socks, had Brazil listed as his favorite movie. *sigh*

    • Science Doc

      It’s a general phenomenon. I remember reading a letter from an SS Einzatsgrupen commander to his wife about how every time he heard Beethoven’s 9 th Symphony Ode to Joy choral passage he felt proud of his job, killing Jews in the occupied east.

  • ze moo

    Excellent suggestions and book recommendations Jon. I can see how just jump starting some critical thinking can get a clam to the ‘WTF’ moment that starts them out the door.

    That would work for the public clams, but the Sea Ogres and staff are a somewhat different problem. Any one caught reading ‘entheta’ would be in a sec check very quickly. There has been a lot of positive, helpful advice for those in direct serfdom, but getting them to dodge the groupthink long enough to reach their own ‘WTF’ moment is very difficult.

    Getting a well programmed clam to recognize that space ship they bought is worthless is a long hard road. F5

  • Kim O’Brien

    I hope all these movies and books can be translated in to Mandarin .

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      As long as they are not translated by a Scientologist. We have been witness to that work (rolls my eyes).

    • Dolly Jones

      Hey Kim is there a way to contact you outside of disqus?

  • Jon, as usual, your scholarship is admirable. I’ve found this statement particularly true – “reach into the person’s pre-cult life to reaffirm the pre-cult identity.” The interesting thing is that I’ve seen just about every person who has been on staff a long time or utterly immersed in the $cientology community a long time, after they get out, to almost instantly “reset” to that pre-$cientology life. With my Baby Boomer generation, that often meant things they were interested in as hippies. Other people who maintain as many non-$cientology friends and professional acquaintances (or more) than $cientologists do better. I don’t think I as much as broke a stride when I left in 1996 because I was publishing one book after another and also because I had such deep knowledge of inner workings of the cult, having been an “ethics officer” for years at ASHO and AOLA (voluntary) and knowing Celebrity Centre’s public inside and out, etc. It took awhile to get rid of some ground-in $cientology attitudes like “Never defend, just attack.” My approach with people – the one that’s worked best – is a relaxed attitude of “Oh yeah, here’s where he got this…” For example, the Do It Now chapter of “Problems of Work.” Do It Now was a common sign in factories all over the U.S. when Hubbard was a kid. He just stole ideas constantly. You’ve elaborated on a lot of that. And I laugh at the cult when I’m talking about it. I’ve found the best thing you can do is a light-hearted “I can take it or leave it and you can, too” approach because in contrast the cult is, over and over and over again, continually very heavy and ham-fisted in how they bang their “reality” into people’s heads.

    • I doubt Hubbard ever spent a day of his life working in a factory. At least, not more than a day in a particular factory before being given the boot.

      • Well, that’s not the point so let me elaborate so maybe you’ll get it – that phrase and its meaning was COMMON KNOWLEDGE to a great many people yet he presented it in the book as though it was his own great original discovery. That’s the kind of crap he did repeatedly.

        • What you’re telling us is that he was an intellectual pack-rat.

          Also, this:

          http://41.media.tumblr.com/c6be7abc5b422db592abda4b753c910f/tumblr_nak0v83LmV1rqpa8po1_1280.jpg

          • beauty for ashes

            yeah chutney! i know that we bunkerites have quite a diversity of personal beliefs, but i think that quote synthesizes the core of what we believe. !

        • I get it just fine that Hubbard swiped it from common stuff of the day. I was just snarking at the idea that Hubbard was ever personally inside a factory to do a day’s honest work. (That’s okay, his rules were for other people too.)

    • Jon Atack

      There is an excellent book called Voices of Protest about Charlie Coughlin and Huey Long, back in the thirties in the US. Coughlin is said to have had the largest radio audience of all time – you could walk from one end of NY to the other without missing a word of his sermons, because so many apartments were tuned in. He was a Catholic priest and a big fan of Hitler. Those sermons are the template for Hubbard – if you substitute ‘psychs’ for Jews in Coughlin’s bigoted litany – which was Jews, communists and bankers. His phrasing is so similar. So, yes, Skip, you make a good point. Many of Hub’s ideas are typical 30s redneck – his racism, his homophobia, his anti-democracy, his idea (in Science of Survival) that a woman’s place is nowhere near business or industry.

      When I left, I went looking for the source of OT III. I’d spent a few days in a Zen monastery as a youngster, where they had a Tibetan tanka showing a meditator fighting his ‘gDons’. Because the penny hadn’t dropped (BTs = demons), I read Alexandra David-Neel’s remarkable books – best sellers in the 30s – which helped me to realize that Hubbard was treading a well worn path. Eventually, I found a treatise called Tibetan Buddhist Medicine and Psychiatry, where the Tibetan practice of exorcism was explained, and finally the penny did drop. The actual source of Hubbard’s own belief seems to have been his own guru – Major Arthur J Burks – who describes the ‘litte its’ as he called them in a book called Monitors, where the ‘redhead’ is mentioned (we now from Hubbard letters that he visited Burks in 1948, in Georgia, while he was doing the series of deep trance ‘experiments’ that would become Dianetics).

      Hubbard was very much the produce of his times. He was a neophyte of the Ancient and Mystical Order of Rosicrucians (AMORC confirmed this for me), where he found the idea of a series of graded steps to Utterness (curiously, a Rosicrucian told me that OT III is very much stolen from them – he’d done both versions – and that the RTC symbol is the Masonic ‘grave of fire’ – the 34th grade of the Freemasons, where, so I was told, Masons are finally told that they worship Baal – Behelzebub – not his brother Jehovah – wild stuff).

      I’ve come to believe that Hubbard actually never had an original idea – one of the Dn axioms tells us that dreams are an imaginative reconstruction of events, and I think that he just ‘alter-ised’ ideas. I was able to trace many, many such – see Possible Origins for Dianetics and Scientology.

      • He was soooooo 30s, Jon! I know I told you (and have mentioned here often) that the Xemu the Evil Space Emperor illustration he had done for the Revolt in the Stars script was a dead ringer for Ming the Merciless in “Flash Gordon.” I think Dianetic$ and $cientology came about to fulfill a 30s teenage wannabes dreams of Hollywood glory. Don’t forget Hollywood gangsters like “Little Caesar” – Hub must’ve admired them, too. Didn’t know about the Rosicrucian or Mason specifics other than they share the creepiness of $cientology on first examination. I should ask my ninja friend Stephen about Tibetan exorcism – he’s a bodyguard for the Dalai Lama. BTW, the top three levels of ninja training are all spiritual, he says. It’s too bad movie studios didn’t have “C” movies (which would’ve meant a triple feature) in the 30s. They could’ve hired Elwrong to rewrite decent scripts and turn them into crap, keeping him gainfully employed and us from $cientology. Don’t forget, Hub thought he was a cowboy, too. If only LSD had been around; he could’ve taken that and watched Gene Autry’s “Phantom Empire” and developed Cowboy $cientology. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iftsODZF5yc

        • Jon Atack

          Scary! Revolt in the Stars is very Flash Gordon, too (with characters like ‘Mish’ and ‘Rawl’). I have the complete interviews for the excellent Secret Life documentary – must upload them – so Forest Ackerman, Hub’s literary agent from 1938 on, goes into some detaila about his client. He rightly cites Final Blackout and Fear as fine stories, but then explains that Hub wasn’t up to the level of Asimov, Bradbury, van Vogt (who abandoned his career to practice Dianetics for the rest of his long life, sadly) or Heinlein (Hub’s one time gay lover). But it is true – I think he did live as a character in a rather low budget 30s movie. Just listen to the deplorable Road to Freedom (‘you’re supposed to eat vegetables, not listen to them’ in the words of one reviewer) and realize that Hubbard wasted two years of Chick Corea’s life making this rubbish. His photos are amateurish (those awful Advance! covers), the tech films are childish, his writing is immature (how awful Battlefield Earth is, reversion to his pulp days). The only thing that he excelled at as hypnosis. Oh, and narcissism, of course.

          And we believed him…

      • I think Hubbard was indeed the produce of his time – a rutabaga, specifically. (I replied to this post once but it didn’t seem to take, so I’m trying again.) Elwrong was sooo 30s and just a hack copycat. The illustration for Xemu the Evil Space Emperor in the script for “Revolt in the Stars” (it had several illustrations) was a direct ripoff of Ming the Merciless from “Flash Gordon.” Thanks for the info on the Rosicrucians and the Mason thing – I didn’t know much about them except the general impression of creepiness. I have a friend who is bodyguard to the Dalai Lama and also a ninja; I’ll have to ask him about Tibetan exorcism. (He says the top three ninja levels are all spiritual, by the way.) Thanks for the excellent data as usual. Yep, Hub was just a stimulant-driven idea thief. Shame he didn’t have LSD early on, he could have given us Cowboy $cientology where you learn how to rope them body thetans and roast ’em. I figure one dose of Clear Light and a simultaneous view of Gene Autry’s “Phantom Empire” would’ve done it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iftsODZF5yc

        • Jon Atack

          Queen’s title song for Flash Gordon ‘Ron, aha, saviour of the universe’. And now you come to mention it, Skip, Ron did claim that his nickname was Flash when he was a barnstorming pilot. Spooky.

          • I figure Elwrong was probably in love with Larry “Buster” Crabbe, who played Tarzan, Flash Gordon, and Buck Rogers, too. Check out the character credits in the opening of “Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe.” Hub probably wanted to fellate him and be him, too. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2GfYXtgneQ

  • Panopea Abrupta

    Red-X Red-X Red-X

    Four Joseph Campbell quotes, since Jon suggests his “Power of Myth” and “Masks of God” above:

    “Instead of clearing his own heart the zealot tries to clear the world.”

    “If the path before you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s.”

    “If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.”

    “There is perhaps nothing worse than reaching the top of the ladder
    and discovering that you’re on the wrong wall.”

    You might have a little fun in clearing Craigslist here –
    some new blues in the 12:30 trawl :
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1-Kvg78kCcvo5gL7UfPcmhmbsagTNtdj0y2LAiHVFrCU/pubhtml#

    If you are lurking or under the radar, stretch your wings and soar, free:

  • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

    Thanks, once again, Jon. The first thing I will be doing is rewatching Leap of Faith. Steve Martin seems to have a thing about cults what with Bowfinger and the mention of his made up religion when hosting the Academy Awards. I wonder if he ever comes by here. It wouldn’t surprise me.

    I post a link to my favourite cult film, Ticket to Heaven. It is a quirky film listed at Rotten Tomatoes under Canadian and art house. It isn’t really art house. The director, I am sure was trying to make a film worthy of Orson Welles.

    It has not been reviewed on Rotten Tomatoes except by two amateur critics. One pans it unforgivingly; the other praises it to the skies. Similarly, it is available for free on youtube but commands collector’s prices at Amazon. When it came out it got good reviews in Canada. It got picketed, too.

    It is about the Moonies who are never named, except in one seen where they are called Loonies. I am assured that every thing mentioned in it is from the Moonie playbook. It is based on an excellent book called Moonwebs by Josh Freed.

    It might be too heavy for someone about to leave. But it may be good for someone who has taken a single step out and wants to know what had happened to him. It is just about perfect for someone, say a teenager, who is flirting with Scientology but doesn’t want to spend his time on the internet going through the myriad of information on the myriad of websites.

    Here is the youtube link.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoavV7D74BU

  • Observer

    Lurkers, come on out! There’s a nice big universe out here, one where not everything that happens is your fault or responsibility to fix. No KRs, no sec checks, no regges, no disconnection. You can read anything you want, talk to anyone you want, keep your hard-earned money … and for staff and SO, Thursday at 2 p.m. is just another time of just another day. Yeah, it’s tough at times–that’s part of life. But it’s much harder where you are, much harder than it needs to be.

    F5

  • I haven’t had a chance to watch the entire series, but this particular one by a former LDS member, who explored control mechanisms in other groups, might be useful. Frequent cites of Steven Hassan.

    7.0 – My LDS Journey – How to Avoid Deception June 28, 2013, askreality, YouTube

    • Stacy

      This is now on my list to watch tonight. Thanks.

  • George Hyland

    What are the credentials of Jon Atack? Please don’t tell me that he was once a cult member. Besides, his grin and childish drawings are irritating me.

    • If you’ve cleared your reactive bank, then you’re choosing to be irritated. Why are you choosing irritation?

    • Panopea Abrupta

      A trolling drone gathers no moths.

    • nottrue

      interesting……

      • Robert Eckert

        Do you wish to subscribe to his newsletter?

    • scnethics

      Would you like some fries with that?

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Use your OT powers to be at cause over your irritation.

    • He takes the high land rather than the gorge.

    • scnethics

      You are no doubt wondering is he has received a CCDC certification from the NAFC.

    • McLovin_1982

      Again… sounds like someone needs a TP sec check…..

      http://tinyurl.com/q5wgl9p

    • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

      Engineer, Ph.D. from Sequoia, Medical Doctor, one of America’s first nuclear physicists, and… (drum roll please) A MAN! Old friend of Snake Thompson. Blood brother to Blackfeet. Barnstormer. Lumberjack fighter. Naval hero. Somebody told me that he wrote mediocre SF but I have trouble believing that.

      I’m sorry, George but sometimes I can’t resist the sarcasm. If you are here you are running the risk of becoming enturbulated. Way to go! You don’t need credentials to criticize a cult, you just need to make sense. He doesn’t want any money, except maybe, if one of us wants to buy his book. He is not declaring anyone suppressive or telling us to disconnect. He is not claiming to be all knowing on any matter. From my point of view he makes sense most of the time.

      See you around and good luck.

      .

      • villagedianne

        What’s a Lumberjack fighter?

        • cdub

          a man’s man

        • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

          L.Ron said that when he was a boy he protected the local kids against much bigger and older bullies using, get this, LUMBERJACK FIGHTING!!!!! I guess every blow was strong enough to fell a tree. He never much went into it beyond that. Of course, as an OT he didn’t have to Lumberjack fight any more. He could as-is people. If you never hear from me again it is probably because I have been as-ised. If you do hear from me again it is only because L.Ron has allowed me to speak openly, pan-determined and kindly thetan that he is.

          • villagedianne

            Thanks MK! Even as a long-time Scientology watcher I still don’t understand what this as-is business refers to, but I hope we will hear from you again.

            • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

              Oh, my goodness! I never expected that there actually was such a thing as Lumberjack fighting and all it’s subtle variations. What a world.

              Let’s see if I can do better on as-ising. As I recall, in the whacky world of Scientology, a person can destroy something (or someone) by creating an exact duplicate. I think it is important that the kids don’t try this at home and that all as-isers have to be at least 18, but it is something that we should all live in terror of. Scarier than spontaneous human combustion, deadlier than ground zero on Atomic Testing Day at the Yucca Flats, all men must bow before the power of AS IS.

          • Robert Eckert

            He’s a Lumberjack, and he’s OK!

    • OSA, OSA
      How much entheta did you fight today?

      • villagedianne

        Reminds me of Bea Arthur as the Unemployment Office clerk in History of the World, Part One.

        Did you fight Entheta today? Did you fight Entheta yesterday? Will you fight Entheta tomorrow?

        From the flick:

        Dole Office Clerk: Occupation?

        Comicus: Stand-up philosopher.

        Dole Office Clerk: What?

        Comicus: Stand-up philosopher. I coalesce the vapors of human experience into a viable and meaningful comprehension.

        Dole Office Clerk: Oh, a *bullshit* artist!

        Comicus: *Grumble*…

        Dole Office Clerk: Did you bullshit last week?

        Comicus: No.

        Dole Office Clerk: Did you *try* to bullshit last week?

        Comicus: Yes!

        And:

        Dole Office Clerk: Occupation?

        Gladiator – The Roman Empire: Gladiator.

        Dole Office Clerk: Did you kill last week?

        Gladiator – The Roman Empire: No.

        Dole Office Clerk: Did you try to kill last week?

        Gladiator – The Roman Empire: Yeah.

        Dole Office Clerk: Now, listen, this is your last week of unemployment insurance. Either you kill somebody next week or we’re going to have to change your status, got it?

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      George have you read A Piece of Blue Sky? Please do and let us know what you think.

    • Stacy

      Just a lifetime’s worth of in-depth study. Is that enough for you?

      Insulting someone’s appearance when attacking their credentials is just juvenile and makes you appear stupid.

    • Alanzo

      No one ever said that Jon Atack was perfect.

      He is just a man.

    • Ella Raitch

      No ‘appeal to authority’ here. Read what is written, state your case if you disagree. Engage in discussion.

  • sumynona

    Jon Attack builds all of his reasoning on just a single assumption: “people who believe in some kind of religion
    are sick and in need to be saved”!
    He, like many other deprogrammers, actually believe that his superior mind can –at the end- convince people that their beliefs are just being indoctrinated and enforced upon them.
    But he fails to see that his kind of reasoning could be applied to ALL beliefs, including those of atheists and his owns!
    Here comes a joke: “The son of John Attack hears that the best school about life and spirituality in town happens to be inside the local Church of Scientology, so he enrolls in it. Things are going well until one day the boy comes home and says, “I just learned all about Hubbard, the Tone Scale and the Eight Dynamic .” The boy’s father is barely able to control his rage. He grabs his son by the shoulders and says, “Joey, this is very
    important, so listen carefully. There is only ONE God — and we don’t believe in Him! You need to be deprogrammed and reprogrammed in something that I believe”

    Well , dear John, I suspect your “heightened awareness” of the theism or cultism that permeates (infects?) our world is related to your ASSUMPTIONS that atheism is The Way, such that everything else is The Wrong Way. And in a way, you may have become just as fanatic as a religious fanatic. If in time you don’t find any relief, consider visiting a professional therapist (who you trust so much) to explore why you feel such a need for everything in the world to conform to your (current) worldview.

    • Jimmy3

      Here comes a joke: “The son of John Attack hears that the best school about life and spirituality in town happens to be inside the local Church of Scientology, so he enrolls in it.

      Did the kid not understand that it was a joke?

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Why didn’t George close the door behind him?
      Oh….wait….!

    • Is your nyn, sumynona, taken from “got some on ya” as in when you sit in front of your computer and masturbate? Inquiring mind wants to know. Funny thing about Jon, he’s not an anonymous coward like yourself.

      • sumynona

        We know very well that who used to masturbate behind an open window so everyone outside could see it…was you! And you know it.

        • I see the dark shadow of an approaching (and well-deserved) ban-hammer.
          Won’t miss you.

          • sumynona

            He started to insult me first…but something has prevented you to see it, of course.

            • *Yawn* I am so provoked. We all are. You’ve done really well. You can go away now.

            • Stacy

              Whatever happened to witty rejoinders? These troll visitors are so disappointing.

            • Qbird

              A Thousand Clowns ~

              Nick: My simple child reaction of what you did is that you are not funny. Funnier than you is
              even Stuart Schlossman, who is my friend, and is eleven, and puts walnuts in his mouth and makes noises. What is not funny is to call us names, and what is mostly not funny is how sad you are, and I’d feel sorry for you if it wasn’t for how dull you are. And those are the worst-tasting potato chips that I’ve ever tasted.
              And that’s my opinion from the blue, blue sky.

            • romanesco

              And what prevents you from reading and understanding Jon’s article? Hmmm?

          • Bury_The_Nuts

            He is like the Sea Org………….He will just come back!!!!

          • Robert Eckert

            I doubt it. He hasn’t really shown vicious personal attacks, which is usually where Tony draws the line.

            • Not yet, but such people can’t help escalating – hence “approaching”.

            • Robert Eckert

              Yes, we will see.

        • Here’s another turnon for ya, sumonya. Enjoy, but disinfect later! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srH94OR1TbU

          • Chee Chalker

            I’m guessing TC channeled COB for this movie as well. I can just see Tiny Dave, in his white muscle tee (the one he wore to TC’s bday party on the Freewinds) popping out dance moves like this.

        • romanesco

          No, but what we do know is that you guys accuse others of what you do. Think about it.

    • Another “Straw Man” argument.

      1) Accuse your opponent of saying something which they did not in fact say.
      2) Demonstrate that what they didn’t say is wrong.
      3) Be smug.

      PS, glad you warned us it was a joke. We wouldn’t have known otherwise.

    • Qbird

      hang on… it’s another call ~
      Murray Burns: [answers phone]
      Hello, is this someone with good news or money?
      No?
      Goodbye!

      [hangs up]

    • villagedianne

      You don’t have to be an atheist appreciate Jon Atack’s work. I’m involved in spiritual practices which he might not see the value of, and which he would no doubt call magical thinking. I am sure we would have significant philosophical differences, but that does not prevent me from appreciating the good work that Atack does.

    • ze moo

      You are such a putz, Your clam honed intellect is not up to rational discourse. Set shields to ignore, Spock.

    • nottrue

      You will feel much better after you eat. Here have a hamburger…..

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Sumy have you read A Piece of Blue Sky? Please do and let us know what you think.

    • Phil McKraken

      That whole story sounds just like a Jack Chick tract.

    • romanesco

      Are you a prankster posing as a Scientologist in order to show how brainless they can sound? If so, you’re doing a hell of a job.

    • Stacy

      Come back when you can type legibly. “…his owns?”
      Learn some grammar.

    • 0tessa

      Your writing (‘on the wall’) seems to me to be much more fanatic than Jon Atack’s essay.

    • (refresh)

    • Frodis73

      Flunk. Where in *any* of Jon’s essays, books, etc has he said ‘you must believe what I believe’? Oh, that’s right, he doesn’t.

    • Jgg2012

      No, he just thinks that religion shouldn’t cost anything, and should be practiced freely.

  • Caught In the Snow

    Thanks, Jon, as always, for the erudite and illuminating advice on how best to gradually awaken the enslaved mind of a Scientologist. I have learned so very much about Scientology, cults and mind control from your painstaking efforts to catalog, analyze, and hasten the demise of the CoS scam. A never-in, I’ve been closely following the Bunker and the meltdown of the cherch for over a year, and your insights have been invaluable to my understanding of how otherwise seemingly intelligent people get sucked into the Scio vortex, and how hard it is to just get out. Thank you so very much for your hard work- you are enlightening many folks and making a difference every day.
    OT, but I’ve been meaning to point out for the newer Bunker readership especially a peripheral film that documents the rise and fall of another modern, American-born (albeit tiny) cult, the Source Family, founded by James Edward Baker, aka Father Yod, in LA in the early 70’s. As we know, modern cults of personality come and go, usually disintegrating upon the death of the Leader, and the Source culties indeed disbanded upon Baker’s demise. “The Source Family” (2012) is available on Netflix. Worth watching if you have the time some day as the genesis and deconstruction of a cult of personality should be of interest to any Bunkerite. (Why the CoS survived this long is a perpetual discussion best left to the experts, but here’s a hint:$$$).
    From Wikipedia:
    The Source Family was a radical experiment in ’70s utopian living. Their outlandish style, popular health food restaurant, rock band, and beautiful women made them the darlings of Hollywood’s Sunset Strip; but their outsider ideals and the unconventional behavior of their spiritual leader, Father Yod, caused controversy with local authorities. They fled to Hawaii, leading to their dramatic demise.

  • Free Minds, Free Hearts

    So Jon Atack’s columns seem to really bring out the trolls. I guess he hits a nerve, eh.

    • Observer

      It never fails.

    • Jimmy3

      Maybe we’ll get a hat trick today. The triple troll.

      • Bury_The_Nuts

        That almost begs for a limerick.

        • Jimmy3

          Three trolls in a hat trick
          Share only one stale shtick
          So the Bunker grew bored
          They decided to ignore
          And told them to sit on a fat This comment is pending moderator approval.

    • Illinoisian

      Nat-lificent said I could bring this down from the attic when the trolls came to visit.

      • You rock, Illin! I made a Dummy-nona specific one too (scroll down)
        <3 nat

      • Robert Eckert

        I see that I owe you a Coke.

        • Illinoisian

          Really? Why would you owe me a Coke? (Did we make a wager that I’ve forgotten about?)

          • Robert Eckert

            You posted the troll drawing a little before I did.

          • Jimmy3

            “Owe me a coke!” is a claim one can say when the same thing is said simultaneously, like “Jinx!” As kids, we actually enforced this. If I coke jinxed someone, I didn’t let it go until they actually got me a can of coke. I was an annoying kid.

            • Illinoisian

              Thanks for the explanation. This ritual was not part of the culture in the suburbs where I grew up. (I almost wish someone would write a book about them.) I bet you *were* persistent — but a coke was quite a prize for a kid.

            • Robert Eckert

              Actually, where I grew up, the thing you said if someone else said the same thing as you was “Padiddle!” (same as the word for a car with one headlight burned out) and then the padiddled person could not speak until someone else spoke his/her name. I learned the “Jink!” and “You owe me a coke!” versions later.

            • Jimmy3

              “Jinx” meant that for us. That you couldn’t speak until your name was spoken.

            • Robert Eckert

              If the two said “Padiddle” at each other both at once, neither could speak until named.

            • Stacy

              Padiddle for a car with one headlight? Huh. We called them “Dinks” (double income no kids- yes, it’s completely illogical). I love regional variations in culture.

    • Robert Eckert

      Yep. On Jeff Hawkins days we can always count on them too.

    • Illinoisian

      I’ve been fooled by these trolls when they come on in,
      But I have found two ways to spot some of ’em:
      They can’t say good-bye to their piece of blue sky
      And they most always argue ad hominem.

      • Eileen

        Nice poetry!! Also true, they seem to think ad hominem is a form of logical reasoning.

  • sumynona

    By Jon Attack: “you should reach into the person’s pre-cult life to reaffirm the pre-cult identity.”
    Lol, What if his pre-cult lidentity was to be a drug addicted or a criminal?

    • If anyone turns out to have been a drug-using con-man pre-cult we will alert you that Ron has returned from target two.

    • Graham

      “What if his pre-cult lidentity was to be a drug addicted or a criminal?” Scientology- always seeing the good in people.

    • FollowTheMoney

      Dude, being able to make a choice, even an unwise one, is what real freedom is. Hope you decide to choose freedom one day.

      • sumynona

        “being able to make a choice, even an unwise one, is what real freedom is”
        Tell that to Mr. Atack and Mr. Hassan! They seem to be involved to indoctrinate individuals that may appear, TO THEM, to have chosen the unwise one.

        • FollowTheMoney

          It no longer becomes a choice of any kind when fear is the only thing keeping you in. Think about this, OSA-bot…. If scientology is so fricking great, why does it need the heavy handed trio of fair game, disconnection and sec checking to keep people in? Do away with these and let’s see how many people actually make the choice themselves to remain.

        • “WHAT IS TRUE FOR YOU is what you have observed yourself.”

          LRH

        • romanesco

          Verb

          indoctrinate (third-person singular simple present indoctrinates, present participleindoctrinating, simple past and past participleindoctrinated)To teach with a biased, one-sided oruncritical ideology.To brainwash.

        • Todd Tomorrow

          Please ignore this OSA troll and use that step over tech. This happens when Jon is on!

        • Stacy

          Try this stumper. How is scientology like a plea bargain when the defendant can’t afford bail?

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Sumy, what he means is that the pre-cult identity has freedom of choice, freedom of movement, freedom of thought,freedom of feeling and acknowledging their own emotions including doubt, freedom of information seeking. These are lost when the person is in a cult, which characteristically does not allow these freedoms. For example, scientologists are told not to read bad news about the church nor to associate with people who do not agree with the church’s teaching. The pre-cult behavior maybe drug addicted or criminal (or cultish) but the person is more than their addiction or behavior.

    • Robert Eckert

      You can move on from addiction, but only if you are not in a state of mind control.

    • Alanzo

      sumynona –

      When I was on the Saint Hill Special Briefing Course, I listened to a taped lecture by LRH called “Moral Codes: What is a Witthold?”

      Have you heard that tape?

      Jon Atack is applying what Hubbard talked about on that tape directly when he says”you should reach into the person’s pre-cult life to reaffirm the pre-cult identity.” Hubbard applied it to auditing to get a person to create the self called “Scientologist”.

      What is on that tape is the foundation of all brainwashing: the creation, and destruction, of a self.

      Really. Not kidding.

      Look in to it. But after you do, do not look at the Sea Org, or the RPF, or to OW writes ups, or to ethics conditions or to sec checking, if you want to remain a Scientologist.

      Alanzo

  • romanesco

    html test

    • Robert Eckert

      By George, I think you’ve got it!

      • romanesco

        Okay, ‘Enry ‘Iggins.

  • Panopea Abrupta

    Xmas shopping list:

    a conscience, a heart, asbestos undies and Kevlar socks for Defiler Misbegotten;

    “How to skin a rat” for Ryan Hamilton
    and it’s companion volume “Tanning Eel-Hide, the Traditional Method.”l

    justice for Laura de Crescenzo, the Garcias, Monique Rathbun, Vance

    closure for the families of Narconon’s victims through the closure of Narconons

    luxury caek and decadent popcorn for the Bunker in readiness for the Alex Gibney, WBM and BBC movies

    an excellent single malt and a fine beer chaser for mine host to sip as he reads the final proofs of his manuscript prior to shipping it off to HIS editors/publishers

    good health for all the Bunkaroos

    freedom for all those enslaved at Gold, on the dingy dinghy and elsewhere

    reconnection and healing for all those families that live gaping painful holes through disconnection

    and a better quality of troll for 2015

  • j238

    Just ask a Scieftologist one question.

    Honestly, how free are you to leave Scientology?

    • Jgg2012

      I don’t know. What would LRH say?

      • Baby

        and so forth and so forth

  • Baby

    The Movie The Wave..( refresh)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICng-KRxXJ8

    • Frodis73

      Great movie Baby! There is a German remake that is only a few years old too, but I don’t remember the name. Also the movie “The Experiment” starring Adrian Brody is a take off on the prison experiments. It’s not the best movie by any means, but it is interesting.
      http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0997152/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_16

      • Baby

        It is isn’t it? It is amazing how quickly people can fall into Lock Step doggie!

        • Stacy

          It makes you wonder about our hardwiring.

          • Baby

            It really does doesn’t it..? Wow..

  • Still_On_Your_Side

    Jon, I realize I have said this before, but theft of free will is a security matter as well as a human rights violation. I hope your voice is being heard by people who need to know this stuff.

  • Ruby Grapefruit

    Hey … hope everyone is having a great holiday season.

    • FromPolandWithLove

      Hmm not in my case. For now a LOT of stress and worries , urgent need to do important changes in my life, but ZERO courage to do so. That’s why I look for inspiration in stories of people who left Scientology…They had courage to change. Sometimes I feel like Cowardly Lion from Wizard of Oz
      Refresh ;);p

        • Baby

          awwwwww Natalie.. You had me at hello.. I’m watching my puppies doing the same thing now..ha.. cutttttttte

        • Jimmy3

          What is the one on the left? A terrier mixed with what? She looks just like my younger dog.

          • Umm, it’s a cute dog . . . of some sort 😉
            ETA: You’re lucky to have such a cutie!

            • Jimmy3

              Thanks, Cesar Millan. 🙂

            • Baby

              You are cracking me up today..hahhahaha..

            • FromPolandWithLove

              You have saying “if You lay with the dogs You dogs you catch fleas” So I wonder if poor Cesar have to scratch often. Ave, Cesar, scratch, scratch 😉

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You Nat-lificient, so adorable:), I feel their cuddly , fluffy warmth inside 🙂

      • Baby

        Poland.. I am sorry.. I painted this years ago.. and added the words to it.. I have it in my office.

        You have a huge support system here sweetie..I am a retired counselor .. What strength do you need from me my friend. ( refresh)

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You Baby:), I have just turned on my printer and I’m looking for a frame. This place ( The Bunker) is so unique , because You can feel here support and warmth. It would be extremly difficult to find second such place in net. Thanks people like You Baby:)

          • Baby

            Listen to me very carefully. Make a list of things you want to change..
            When my twin died I literally wrote after 4 years of isolation.

            1. Get out of bed

            2. Take shower

            3. Brush teeth

            4. Put on clean clothes

            Seriously ..and when they became automatic I added to the list.

            So you have to just ( as Nike’ says) JUST DO IT.

            Make a plan. Things that need to be taken care of now.

            Do NOT try to bite off more than you can chew. It will be too overwhelming for you.

            Take the ” Salami approach.” Just one bite at a time. Mini goals.. and one more thing.

            We love you Poland. Now Buck Up Buckaroo and get Going!

            • Jimmy3

              Why is that called the Salami approach? I need to know

            • Baby

              Is this a Penis joke?

            • Now it is XD

            • Jimmy3

              I wasn’t making a penis joke, but as Nat just said.. I think it is now.

            • Baby

              hahahahhaha

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Be carefull boy with this penis, because censorship of Mighty Disqus of Teegaeck may cut it into slices. Slice by slice ;p;p;p

            • Again . . . f5

            • Baby

              hahahahhahahaa.. You still have your sense of humor Poland.. That’s a great start!

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Penis … where ?! ;p

            • Stole the words right outta my mouth 😉

            • I always called it the “how do you eat an elephant?” approach — one bite at a time.

            • Jimmy3

              If I don’t want to eat an elephant, can I just skip all the bites?

            • Baby

              Oh shoot Jimmy just start with the Balls..

            • Jimmy3

              You’re starting to scare me, Salami.

            • Baby

              Salami..Salami .. Bologna

            • FromPolandWithLove

              We have a saying: ” co zrobione to zrobione” which is translated as ” what is done , is done” , well redundand a bit, but it helps me do to important things and don’t put them later.
              Yes Ma’am!!! :):):) I promise to report progress 🙂

            • Baby

              You better report Soldier.. Most people procrastinate not because they are lazy but because they are scared.. Trust me..I know.

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Bunker time is not procrastination, it’s improving my English. Wink, wink ;);p

            • Baby

              I’m sorry everyone I promise this is my last download.. but we have a Soldier Down..(ref)

            • Stacy

              Baby, you are such an inspiration.

            • Baby

              Stacy thank you.. that was nice of you to say..I did that for 30 years.. Working with Clients.. to be

              ” The Best that they could be without joining the Army..” tee hee.. I love giving advice.

              ( Even when not asked to do so..haha)

            • Stacy

              You generally have some pretty good advice, so go for it.

        • Sherbet

          I love it.

          • Sherbet

            I had to come back to this and say again that I really, really love it.

            • Jimmy3

              I like it a lot, but I’m not quite ready to commit to loving it.

            • Sherbet

              Well, that’s how I feel about you, Jimmy.

            • Jimmy3

              That’s cold. And to think I was considering glomming onto you. No more.

            • Sherbet

              Oh, go ahead and glom. There’s room.

            • Vaquera

              Such a guy.
              (Such a great guy!)

            • Baby

              Hahaha.. Well I won’t have to worry this time about you wanting to Marry it..ha

          • Baby

            I have one that I painted and it said..But I hand Printed it..instead of taking a picture of the canvas and putting typography on it..

            ” Her World was Gray Until a Beautiful Gust of Colors Blew in..” It was so cool.. I have to see if I saved it..

            Thank you Sherb.. that means a lot to me..

            • Sherbet

              Awesome.

        • Eclipse-girl

          I love the inspiration.
          Thank you

          • Baby

            smooches E

        • Aslansown

          Wow! I didn’t know that you are artistically talented.That is beautiful and I love the words.

          • Baby

            Thank you Pie Lion.. xox

            • Aslansown

              Ha! Perfect name. The more I look at that painting the more I love it. How did you get those vertical “strips” ? (Not sure what to call them, but it kind of looks like strips laid down next to each other.) I love the colors, and the quote underneath really hits me — it’s the attitude I need to have, but can’t seem to summon up when things get hard….

            • Baby

              I had a (I want to say Bark like Pine board.) . and just started to paint it. It was a real rough texture and just piled on the paint.. to get the straighter lines I masked off the stripes with painter’s tape..

              but it was so rough and bled all over. I had to wait for the layers to dry before I could put another color down..so that they wouldn’t blend. but some did blend.

              I took a pallet knife and sandpaper when it was all done and roughed it up some more.

              My hubby put hooks on it and I gave it to my friend as a Coat rack.. It was cute..

              Took a picture of it without the hooks and made it rectangle and added the blue and letters on the computer.. I really loved how it turned out.. Thank you honey..xoxo

            • Aslansown

              Very, very cool.

            • Baby

              I just put a picture of a coat rack I made.. I have made maybe 100 of them.. Terrible picture.. it is right above my last comment..

            • Baby

              Here is an example of a coat rack I made.. It is distressed pine.. Terrible picture.. but you get the idea.. The colors look much better in person. ( refresh)

            • Aslansown

              Wow! How cool! You are really talented — I love it! I really like using the distressed wood. If I ever get the chance to meet you and we eat pie together, I want to see all your art!

            • Baby

              Thank you..It is a deal! I love working with distressed wood. I guess it’s because I always thought of me.. You know rough around the edges..not an easy path,

              but I had to put COLOR in my life to survive the gloom. Now I am NOT a victim..I am a Victor. But I will tell you. Coming here when I did is the BEST thing I have done ..

              I have met you and so many wonderful people. My life is good..but everyday I tell myself that. I don’t take anything for granted because it could all be gone tomorrow.

              My husband and I are getting older.. so I take one breath at a time. xo

            • Aslansown

              I’m so glad I found this community. I found Tony’s VV column when I was looking for info on Katie Holmes’ escape, and I couldn’t stop reading everything he wrote. I lurked for a long time here in the Bunker but I saw the caring and community and I got the nerve to post something. Since then this has been a place of support for me after leaving a job, being unemployed, now working a mind-numbing temp job in a highly dysfunctional department for almost no money…… and dealing with serious depression throughout. When I get a chance at night I pop in and see what’s happening, and just seeing certain people’s avatars (and you know how much I love yours, you smoking baby you) makes me feel like I’m among friends.

            • Baby

              You are truly among friends Lion. After the holidays hopefully things will change for you. I’m sorry for your depression. I couldn’t make it without Paxil..I just couldn’t ..

              I love see my Lion too.. ; )

            • Aslansown

              Thank you. The depression is long-standing even with the evil psych drugs…..hopefully when I can find a better job things will look up.

            • Baby

              NIGHT SWeetheart..Get through the holidays.. smooches ((HUGS))) yawwwwwwwwwn

            • Aslansown

              Yikes – didn’t realize it was so late, esp. in your area. Thanks for chatting. Sleep well!

            • Baby

              Oh.. It’s early for me..I loved chatting with you..Perfect in fact. But I am yawning and that is unusual at this hr. for me..( night owl..) So will grab sleep when it hits me.. xo

            • Baby

              OK found one more.. I made it for my grand daughter for her robe ( dragonfly hook) I’m done..ha..I promise.. refresh ..but I loved the letters I painted by hand

            • Aslansown

              Oh – I love the letters! They are wonderful — the way you used color on them and the colors themselves. I really like the quote too. (I don’t remember it because I was so terrified of the flying monkeys the first time I saw the Wizard of Oz when I was little I’ve never watched it again!) I bet your granddaughter just loves this!

            • Baby

              Oh she did..Every time I see her robe hung up on it I chuckle.. Thank you

              I wouldn’t post these earlier..but since it’s late I didn’t think the Bunker would mind..

              Oh Wizard of Oz is my favorite.. I was scared of the Guys marching around the castle.. It is a scary movie..but one day bite the bullet and watch it. It really is a beautiful movie..

            • Aslansown

              I try not to be too “chat room” too but also late at night I feel it’s maybe OK. I’m not sure I’ll ever be persuaded to watch the movie – I’ve got too much anxiety!

            • Baby

              Well then don’t push it.. I had anxiety tonight that over road my paxil. .. I was going to a bar and sat with like 6 people. I only knew 2.. and I was getting all worked up with my stupid social anxiety..

              but got through it without dying..but I felt it creep in..ugh.. Night doll..xoxox

      • Stacy

        Sending lots of encouragement your way. Holidays can be so stressful. Hang in there.

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You 🙂 Sometimes when Holidays are over You can hear on the streets colective sigh of relief;)

          • Baby

            I sent my kids $ for my Grandkids.. I’m done. No stress..No hustle and bustle..I refuse. I celebrate Christmas in my heart. I know it sounds hokey. I just can’t afford the stress.

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Exactly, sometimes getting rid of pressure to celebrate Christmas in one “this is how it supposed to be, because tradition” model can be very liberating:) May I as how many grandkids You have? Grandmas are awesome nature’s invention :). I have great grandmother ( My grandmother’s mother ) and she is 102 years old 🙂

            • TheQueenofBulgravia

              WOW!!!

            • TheQueenofBulgravia

              $, One size fits all. …..and duplicates welcomed!

            • Stacy

              It doesn’t sound hokey at all. You figure out the best way to live your life with a minimum of stress, because stress is such a frigging killer. I do the same thing in different ways.

          • 0tessa

            Christmas blues…
            I ‘celebrate’ Christmas, or the returning of the light, by looking at the things I am grateful for. And they are there always, but somethimes, when things are rough, we don’t see them anymore. Life has taught me to be grateful. Especially for the little things.
            Look for the little things …

            • FromPolandWithLove

              I ‘m trying to write down things I am grateful in my calendar, I strongly confirm It helps 🙂

          • Stacy

            Oh yes!

      • Baby

        Here is another inspirational quote ( I made it up myself..) for me..and now I’ll give it to you.. Print it out 8×10 .. love you sweet Poland. ( refresh)

        • FromPolandWithLove

          So true…

          • Baby

            Well honey.. Just keep peeling off those layers.. Some days more some days less..Just keep peeling off that old wallpaper .

            Are the changes in your life too personal to discuss here?

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Yes too personal, great emotions attached and that’s why suddenly it is difficult to find words, now I’m like: how to say it in English? I have support in my life ( that’s why Scientology dissing psychoterapy so pisses me off, or make angry, real angry;) ), I have plan, only thing missing is that courage to make first step, overcome this feeling of being stuck.

            • Baby

              We are all here to catch you Poland.. You GOT ONE LIFE TO LIVE.. Go for the Gusto! (refresh)

            • Vaquera

              Poland, I have been stuck for quite a while and with what sound like similar fears. I’ll make you a deal: I’ll take a step forward if you will, too. We don’t have to say which step we take or how big is the step, only that we moved forward in some way.

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Deal! I’m here almost everyday so I’m going to find You 🙂

            • Vaquera

              ^^^^^ As am I. Buddy fear-fighters!

            • Jimmy3

              I appreciate this pact you’ve made, and I don’t want to sound insensitive. But “Buddy Fear-Fighters” is perhaps the worst superhero group name ever.

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              ‘Whacks you upside the head’

            • Jimmy3

              Story of my life. Always being hit, never being hit on.

            • Sherbet

              But the uniforms are sassy.

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Are You going to say: “No capes!”? Fun killer.
              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4R2aW03pwL0
              F5

            • Vaquera

              I was shooting for adequate.

            • *tea up my nose on that one*

            • Jon Atack

              Good luck to you both!

        • Stacy

          I love this Baby. It’s perfect!

          • Baby

            Thank you Stact,, I really needed it more than I can ever tell you.. : )

      • Captain Howdy

        Hang in there, chief. Right now I’m depending on the kindness of strangers (they’re not really strangers, just strange people) for my survival because I can’t even make it across the street to the store, but I know that’s only temporary and it’s up to me to fix it. Most of my current problems were caused by me doing nothing or procrastinating.The only way things get better is by doing something about it. It’s the fear that keeps us from acting.

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You Captain Howdy. ” Most of my current problems were caused by me doing nothing or procrastinating.” Trust me I know something about it :). Like I said to Baby: Bunker time isn’t procrastination, it’s improving my English . Wink, wink 😉 All right let’s call it procrastination with benefits: improving English, amazing people and great feeling of belonging ( like being fan of soccer team 😉 ) And let me repeat: I wish You good health with all of my heart. Well it is a bit cowardly heart, but it is still good heart with a lot of soft spots for The Bunker Strangers 🙂

          • Sherbet

            And they have a soft spot for you. This place is one big group hug, except for trolls; they have to observe and learn, but no hugs yet. 🙂

            I’ve said it before: This is a unique place. Lots of friendship and caring, without glomming all over on one another.

        • Sherbet

          That’s funny you said that (not funny haha), because today I glanced through a book a friend loaned me ages ago. It’s an allegory about butterflies and caterpillars — not my cup of tea and a bit corny. But the moral of the story is that fear keeps us from discarding the things that hurt us, because that negative behavior is familiar and comfortable. “It’s the fear that keeps us from acting.” Very true, Captain Howdy, PhD

          • Vaquera

            Fear of failure also keeps us from moving forward.

            • FromPolandWithLove

              Or expectations that something must be perfect, ideal.

            • Vaquera

              That’s exactly it.

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              Forget perfect…there is no such thing………strive for a flawed excellence and enjoy that that was always enough.

            • Stacy

              It’s hard to forget perfect if that’s what’s been drilled into you from birth. That can become paralyzingly too.

            • Getting older helps too.

            • Stacy

              It does, but at least for me this has been the hardest lesson from my parents to let go of.

            • Captain Howdy

              Some of us grow up from day one waiting for the other shoe to drop. We become paralyzed by this creeping fear that no matter what we do the end result will always be the same.

            • Sherbet

              So we set the bar really low, so we’re not surprised when we hit rock bottom. If you don’t aspire to the heights, you won’t feel the terror of falling from the top. Just keep everything tamped down and anesthetized with no highs and lows. It’s safer and less scary that way. Yup. I get it. I get it.

            • Captain Howdy

              Bingo.

            • Stop reading my diary Sherb and CH!
              😉

            • Frodis73

              I’m very late to this party, but wow. ^^^This!!!!

          • Bury_The_Nuts

            Yeah…………..I can’t believe I am using this either….but it seemed right.

        • stillgrace2

          We have a saying around my house. It’s: “Get ON it!!” Feel free to use it when you need to kick yourself in the caboose.

        • Eclipse-girl

          I am glad you have people helping you.
          As I said to Poland, we are here for you.

          If you need help, please ask.

      • Eclipse-girl

        Poland
        (((HUGS)))

        In regards to baby’s message below about doing the simple things
        Get out of bed
        Shower
        brush teeth
        put on clean clothes.

        It was reminiscent of what I too from Nancy Many’s book : My Billion year Contract.

        She was put through an Ethics routine that was meant to break it and it did.

        To recover from that psychotic break, she pretended.
        She tried to do what she could a normal routine.
        Like make coffee and read the newspaper.
        even if she didn’t read a word of the paper she kept the habit up.
        Eventually, things got better for Nancy.
        She did recover and then helped many others.

        We are all concerned and if you need help you just ask.
        (((HUGS)))

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You Eclipse 🙂 Now I have new help with motivation : I’m going to report progress to Baby, and with Vaquera I have also deal to motivate eachother. First i felt guilty because: off-topick, derailing discussion,etc, but after I realised that it is better to give comfort to somebody in need than engage in fight with troll :). And maybe trolls will learn something? And maybe a lot of under-radars lurking here will think about their fear of change and do something about it? So I decided to write about my struggle. Once again Thank You:):):) I’m sending You hugs :):):)

          • Eclipse-girl

            You are going to be doing the work.
            We will help you stay motivated and hold you when you are scared. If we could, we would take this journey with you.
            I think writing about your journey is a great idea.

            with practice, it does get easier

          • Ella Raitch

            Exactly Poland – there’s no ‘one’ right way to interact here, but being human is always a good way to go.

      • Bury_The_Nuts

        Come on…………You can ROAR!!!
        ROAR LOUD!!!!

      • Free Minds, Free Hearts

        Oh Poland you are brave beneath it all and we have enough courage and strength to hold you up when the going is rough.

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You 🙂

      • noseinabk

        Very brave of you to bring it up. I had to walk away from the computer when I read this and the reply’s from Baby. It made me face how I just suck it up and move along. I know this is not a good thing but the easier thing. You will be in my thoughts and I hope you find the strength to fix or improve the situation.

        • FromPolandWithLove

          Thank You 🙂 We are IAS – International Asossiation of Stucked 😉

  • Dear Jon,

    This list is fantastic! What great resources. I also love a good Derren Brown takedown as an easily digestible edutainment tool (have four cousins still in my old cult).

    Also, love the paragraph about reaching into “the person’s pre-cult life to reaffirm the pre-cult identity” with old pictures and things. Tory Magoo talks a lot about the role of music from her old life (while playing stones music etc.) helping her reconnect with that truer identity and I have read how music from adolescence helps Alzheimer’s sufferers “wake up” as well (http://www.livescience.com/19765-music-alzheimers-patients-memory.html). What are your thoughts about the role of music from adolescence? This stuff would not be helpful to born-ins (like my cuzzies) but if my paternal grandparents were still alive (the first ones in my family to get suckered in) I would definitely have tried it with them.
    Thank you,
    Nat-lificent

    • Robert Eckert

      Link broken because parser grabs the right parenthesis if you don’t leave a space before it; fixed:

      http://www.livescience.com/19765-music-alzheimers-patients-memory.html

    • Stacy

      Finding Derren Brown through the Bunker is one of the best fringe benefits. I’m already making plans to incorporate several of his shows into my classes next semester.

    • Jon Atack

      Music is very important. It has sustained me throughout my life. And there is always more to discover. We are so directly affected by music too – I listen to different music to match different moods – so swing jazz is uplifting (most of it – though Lady Day’s Gloomy Monday was banned on US radio, lest listeners killed themselves!). Today, I was playing NWA…

  • Someone told Miscavige that all great religious leaders have amazing presence. With his limited education, he misunderstood that. Now his minions are forced to “donate” their meager allowance towards buying him presents.

    • Jimmy3

      Someone once told Miscavige, “Don’t let your life slip away.” He thought, “Yeah, that’s right. I can just ship her away.”

      • Then there was time he took FDR’s advice to heart: Prosperity is just around the coroner!

  • lil

    Excellent info!

  • Mark

    Just a couple of corrections, Jon: The Diary of a Drug Fiend is not Crowley’s autobiography, but one of his two published novels (alongside Moonchild). His voluminous ‘autohagiography’ is called The Confessions of Aleister Crowley. And the author of Black Boomerang is Sefton Delmer, not “Delmar”: the book has long been out of print and is only occasionally available second-hand at exorbitant prices, but there is an online version available at http://www.psywar.co.uk/delmer/1005/1002

    • Jon Atack

      Thanks!

  • pamphlet#1

    Wow! Once again Jon manages to pack so much good information and advice into his writing.

    In this one he hits on one of the main reasons I think I find Scientology fascinating. I grew up in the community around Idries Shah in Langton Green just outside of Tunbridge Wells. Coincidentally this is not 12 miles from East Grinstead – I’ve found myself wondering what it is about the South East of the UK that attracts so many cults / esoteric groups.

    My book shelves still contain many of Shah’s books and other books on the Sufi.

    I asked my mother recently if there was much mention of Scientology in the Langton settings but she didn’t remember much being mentioned. One of the things I’ve taken from the many books is that there seem to be many chapters / anecdotes on how to recognize and avoid those who would prey on spiritual seekers. Although I don’t think everyone of my generation from Langton paid attention as one of my close friends became involved with Andrew Cohen’s personal brand of cult.

    Jon – thanks so much for all your writing around this 🙂

    • Perhaps believers move to be close to the first successful fringe group – and their presence brings in other gurus attracted to the concentration of potential converts.

      When several groups are concentrated in the same area, this creates a sympathetic environment for them and attracts others. If the situation endures for a generation or two, the culture becomes self-perpetuating.

  • ze moo

    Nick Xenophon, Aussie extraordinaire is starting his own political party.

    http://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/xenophon-to-launch-his-own-party/story-e6frfku9-1227147287390

  • Pierrot

    *** RED X +–+ Reminder ***
    An unusual strong start for a Saturday, they must have been picked by yesterday’s comment.
    Boston has added more ads, somebody is cracking the whip, SFBay is early on the job!
    We have an extraordinary 48 new ads so far for a Saturday!
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1-Kvg78kCcvo5gL7UfPcmhmbsagTNtdj0y2LAiHVFrCU/pubhtml
    Ty Mark : https://www.flickr.com/photos/120371503@N05/14816164487/in/set-7215764280207929

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      These never cease to excite the hell out of me.

  • Off-topic: I was listening to Hubbard’s 700802-1 A Short Briefing of Guardians Office Technical Personnel. At 17:00, he talks about William S. Burroughs, and what someone else did wrong. Apparently it was because Scientology tech had been completely lost and wasn’t being applied for several years. They weren’t even doing the Saint Hill course at Saint Hill. (I wonder if he means the SHSBC that Davey recently junked?)

    I guess it never occurred to anyone to wonder that if Scientology tech is so perfect and gives such great gains, how is it possible to drift away from doing it properly? It’s supposed to make Big Beings, but the first thing they do while Hubbard isn’t looking is go off-track. Once again, the only godhood allowed in Scientology is Hubbard’s own.

  • rockyslammer

    Hya Jon,

    For those that don’t know Jon & I have “history”! Good I hope

    If you have all the time in the world to work on someone with a view to getting some critical thinking I have used the following to great success.

    1. Never, never make a statement or give advice or data or anything.
    2. Always, always ask a question. Not a loaded question full of threat or undisguised significance.

    Just a nice casual question, asked in the way you really want to know the answer. You are asking a question about their genuinely held belief and you are interested. Over coffee (in my case tea) or lunch or somewhere without stress or hurry.

    Listen to the answer and I mean listen. Then ask another question regarding the answer. The secret is in what question you raise. Get them to really inspect what they’ve just said. If what they have said is nonsense please don’t laugh or outright reject it. Just probe gently. You are really interested.

    I haven’t had to discuss scientology with, in this way, anyone for several years now. The last was the OSA bigwig at Auckland org. He phoned me on numerous occasions after I did a “60 Minute” TV spot. I guess he thought he was “handling” me. I thought it was the other way around. I started asking him about Miscavidge and that went well as I got some real responses. Didn’t achieve a full result as he stopped phoning after that.

    I don’t have the memory Jon has so I can’t give anecdotal incidences of this working. It was all so yesterday.

    However given enough time, if you are non confrontational, you will be able to get them to see the flaws for themselves.

    I use the same techniques, when I have the time, on the various religious sects that arrive at my door. Recently I broke my own rules of engagement when I was given a complete load of drivel by a very nice lady. I said with perfect interest and sincerity ” You don’t really believe that do you?” Her silence was deafening as the cogs went round! I can be an evil bastard.

    I usually tell people that I am an atheist (or Darwinian) and that I used to be a zealot in a cult. That way you are honest & up front and that is respected. Don’t say which cult unless they ask. Obviously not to to a scientologist as you will be immediately labelled an sp! However the surprise element can work. Years or so ago I arrived early to an Anonymous demo in Auckland. I found a bunch of 5 or so Org staff members sitting drinking coffee waiting for the Anons to arrive. I didn’t know them or they me. I went straight up to them and sat down and said “Hi – I am a real SP!” They didn’t run for cover and we sat around chatting for a while mostly about how to deal with psychiatric patients.

    That, by the way, is a very easy topic to get going. Very few scios have ever thought about what to do a with a real nut case, off his/her meds, running around with a butcher’s knife. Ask “OK, so you have eliminated psychiatry – what then?” Hey you can spend hours on just that topic. I have offered to take scios to a real forensic psych place so they can see for themselves. I have also offered to bring a big bad psych patient to their house so they can help him get off his meds. The news that the guy has killed people in the past usually ends the conversation. I know this is very tongue in cheek and it was understood as that but it does sometimes ignite the thought processes.

    Sorry TL:DR – not like me at all.

    Regards and thanks to all here
    Martin Ruston. SP with bar

    O a whimsical note – Jon & me and Warren McShane On St Hill driveway at the very first demonstration in 1982. I must rescan this pic.

    • Thank you, Martin! I love your post and a photo. Stop by here more often, please.

    • Jon Atack

      Good to see you here, Martin, and I agree with your approach. Often as not, believers can talk themselves out, given enough time. There’s a story in a text on attachment therapy, by John Bowlby, where a 16 year old who was abandoned by his mother at birth, tells his counsellor that he’s going to save enough money and travel to the US and find her. Rather than pointing out any of the obvious difficulties, the counsellor simply encourages the boy to talk. It took months, but, eventually, the lad realized that his plan was impossible. And people do, but if you are aggressive and conflictual, the ego defences go up and the belief is actually strengthened. Which is why protests can be harmful for those locked inside the belief system – even when the protestors are friendly. And, yes, this was us on a protest – I think it was actually 1984 (certainly no earlier than 1983, because that was when I left) – delivering a petition to St Hill. Captain Bill was with us with his ‘auditing not frauditing’ placard (and ‘freedom not greedom’). Warren pushed me off the drive, and told me that St Hill was his property. I pointed out that he had just committed common assault, and as he began to use his Tone 40 (or was it 8-C, something with numbers in), a diminutive police woman explained that I was telling the truth, and ordered him back on ‘his’ property. He was like a sheep when commanded by a woman in a uniform.

      Can I add that Martin was known for being a tad aggressive in his attitude at the time, which, as this post demonstrates was a scn related behaviour, as he has obviously become a deeply considerate individual. He remarked to me that he’d left the cult because he’d realised that the EP of Scn was enemies, which was a fair observation.

  • hansje brinker

    I would recommend a Scientologist to read “Mein Kampf” by Adolf Hitler………….

    • Captain Howdy

      They’d just see it as a “How To” manual like Hubbard saw “1984”.

      • hansje brinker

        Then I show them the pictures of the IAS-events and the speeches of Hitler. And let them notice the stage similarities.

  • Science Doc

    I go off and do a bunch of domestic stuff for a few hours and when I come back a troll has tracked mud all over the place. On the good side the kitchen is full of fresh and nutritious foods, juices and home made liquors.

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Can I come over?

  • Baby

    Excellent Documentary about the making of the wave..If you can’t watch now.. save it..It’s THAT good..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Psp3dGDGNgk

    • EnthralledObserver

      Wow – that’s scary… makes you wonder just where you might have fit in had you ever experienced this yourself. How would you react? How would you have reacted at 16?

      • Baby

        Absolutely.. I hope I would have walked out.. Notice I say I HOPE I would have..

    • noseinabk

      I am surprised that this never came up in relation to scientology. I wish we could force a few of them to watch this and see if anything resonates.

      • Baby

        Nose.. absolutely. It is an absolute gold mind! When I watched it I thought the same thing as you.. In fact when I come across someone on the fence I will post it for them to watch.

  • ze moo

    Mike Rinder makes a good case that there are only 10k loyal clams left.

    http://www.mikerindersblog.org/pleeeeeease-come-back/

    • Science Doc

      I’m not sure he goes that far. He states very clearly that COB and a few others know the exact count from the current and active (non declared) IAS members. He says it was below 30000 ten years ago. And he says they have trouble getting 10000 to come to the annual IAS meeting. I suspect the number is in free fall with several thousand technically lifetime IAS and not yet declared but otherwise avoiding the Regges and not buying any more intensives. So maybe it is down to 10000, but COB clearly knows a specific number, and that number is an upper limit. There is a limit to how much cancer you can cut out of a body until the body falls apart.

      • ze moo

        Actually, he only says that 10k clams will attend the Tent Event and its clones in Clearwater and LA. Those events must be major regfests. But I agree that they don’t tell the complete picture. Knowing the unique bodies in the shop during a year would tell the membership story. Any way to get that number?

      • I’d like to see the stats for the number of Mark 8 Easybake meters where the owner hasn’t done the yearly “update” yet.

  • Observer

    Does this seem familiar to anyone? It turns my blood to water. (Sorry if any of you get leukemia from that.)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuAzvb38PyI

    • Sherbet

      AARGGH!! Now I remember why I couldn’t ever watch The Twilight Zone!

    • Jimmy3

      That’s pretty good.

    • Eclipse-girl

      A young Cloris Leachman. I had forgotten she was Anthony’s mother.

      Has Bill Mumy ever spoken to others about this famous episode?

      • Observer

        Dang, I always get the young Ron Howard and Billy Mumy mixed up.

        • Eclipse-girl

          It is easy to do.

      • Sherbet
        • Eclipse-girl

          You have sent me down a rabbit hole.
          Now I have to find the 2003 episode.

          Thank you for finding this.

    • Captain Howdy

      I’ve made the David Miscavige as “Anthony” analogy in my head too many times to remember.

      • Sherbet

        “You are a bad man, a very bad CICS.”

    • FromPolandWithLove

      Kill it with fire !!!

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Ooh………and DM is about the same size Billy was then.

    • stillgrace2

      This episode freaked me out when I was young!!

      • Observer

        It’s not nearly as creepy as the story. I read it in 5th grade (I was a precocious reader) in a science fiction anthology in the school library. I loved those stories and checked it out over and over.

  • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

    OTVIIIisGrrr8!: How to get a convinced Scientologist on the road to donating more to the IAS!

    Stable Datum: All members of the Church of Scientology have a button on self importance, particularly OT’s and every single person in OSA.

    Therefore, we use the “self importance” button to soak these idiots appeal to Church parishioners to donate more money:

    * It is only your donation that stands between Planetary Salvation and Planetary Destruction!

    * COB was just telling us what a magnificent thetan you are. And now COB personally needs a favor from you. He needs you to help him pay the legal bills for a malicious Psych attack that could destroy Scientology!

    * You alone are the entire reason the entire Church of Scientology will survive today. Don’t let the group down. Please make a heroic donation.

    * Only you can save souls from being lost for eternity. Please donate today to help the IAS keep its Fourth Dynamic programs going.

    * You are a Big Being — and your big beingness can save this planet. Write that check.

    * Bob Duggan has a bigger IAS trophy than you do. Are you gonna let Bob get away with outdoing you in status? No, we didn’t think so.

    * Grant Cardone: You and Elena are actually far more important to the Scientology religion than Tom Cruise. COB said so. COB needs you and Elena to step up and personally fund the CCHR campaign for Florida. COB needs you to stop the psychiatric drugging of children in Flag’s own backyard! Thanks, you guys are such BiG Beings who are sooooo Theta!

    * Bob Duggan: “Bob, COB told us that just being around you completely blows charge for him. Bob, COB knows he can personally count on you and Trish to help him confront and shatter the Fourth Dynamic Engram on this prison planet. When people on this cleared planet look back one hundred years from now they will say, “Thank you Bob and Trish Duggan – and thank you COB!”

    • Jimmy3

      And thank you. It was starting to get really deep in here. We needed to be put back on the path of Planetary Salvation.

      • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

        Yes, well, with all this nonsense about how to persuade “convinced Scientologists” to read entheta, we in RTC felt is was getting so completely Psych in here that we needed to step in and handle the Reactive Group Bank and its aberrated computations.

        • Sherbet

          But you do recall, don’t you, that Big Pharma funds the Bunker and all its participants. Why, here’s my December check right here at my elbow.

          • Stacy

            I’m starting to get a bit cranky about not being on Big Pharma’s payroll. It’s been a almost 5 months. When can I expect the checks to start rolling in?

            • Observer

              Refresh

            • Qbird

              Ha Obs!
              PAYDAY!!!

            • Stacy

              That’s more like it! Christmas shopping, here I come!

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              Obs will up your status right after you reach ‘Clear’ and sign up for staff.
              You will have to buy your own crappy uniforms and shoes though.

            • Stacy

              Can I wear crocs?

            • Only if you want to be alone forever.

            • Stacy

              Comfort before fashion, is my motto. Funny I never wear crocs to work then…

            • L. Wrong Hubturd

              LOL. NO guys like a girl with Crocs.

            • Stacy

              My hero!

            • L. Wrong Hubturd

              I’ll push my luck. Or Uggs.

            • Stacy

              No Uggs.

            • L. Wrong Hubturd

              Excellent. You can grade my exams any time. 😉

            • Stacy

              Really? Yay. Just what I wanted. MORE exams to grade…

            • Juicer77

              Yeah, and I’m not only an employee… I’m a customer, too!

            • Stacy

              Lol, me too!

          • Observer

            *refresh*

            • Can DodoTheLaser get his check too, pretty please?!
              I will not accept 5 or 20 grand though. Any other number will do.

      • Sherbet

        I’ve been looking around for Dr. Phil to make an appearance. But scientology is a depressing subject, and when it’s piled on with personal stuff and seasonal issues and health matters,man!, it’s a misery casserole. It’s good to vent, safely, in the Bunker.

        • Jimmy3

          Dr. Phil will show up when there are un-disconnected Scientologists here to balance the discussion.

          • Sherbet

            😀 He sure loves them reunions.

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Ok, I have a question. Why is the Forth Dynamic Engram still such a BFD? Xenu has been locked up in Mountain Jail with his eternal everreadies for how long now?
      Why can’t you all just get over it and realize you have XENU in the SuperMax of the universe and just quit whining about him.
      For goodness sake, Its like being afraid Charles Manson is under your bed.
      It doesn’t seem to ‘Theta’ to me.

      • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

        BTN. we in RTC wish Scientology could just be given away for free, but the fact is that it costs money to handle the Fourth Dynamic Engram, it costs money to run Scientology’s vast prison system.

        Someday it will be free, but for now it costs money and lots of it.

        • Bury_The_Nuts

          My check is in the mail.

          And as soon as I get it from big pharma….I am gonna cash it and take the hubby out to dinner.

          • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

            COB thanks you for your monumental and heroic donation.

            http://i69.photobucket.com/albums/i68/sadhu77/HustlerDave-1.png

            • Charles Manson

              Yeah well that punkass con Dave Miscavige has always been a hustler. When the law sends him here to Corcoran we’ll do TR’s the hard way on him. Teach him some manners.

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              Hey Charlie, they had you in lockdown lately? Or been playin with the girlfriend?
              Good to see ya.

            • Charles Manson

              Conjugal visits = F/N.

            • EnthralledObserver

              Straight up and vertical… so I hear.

            • Is a LFBJ not allowed?

          • Observer

            F5

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              YAY!
              We are going to the Golden Corral and then stopping at dairy queen for dessert.
              YEEHAW!!!

            • Observer

              Perfect! If you’re gonna go, go BIG!

            • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

              All the Psychs in Psychville
              are lined up in their white lab coats
              drugging populations and planets
              why civilization is so drugged that
              Tom Cruise was almost run over by a bus!

              How many populations
              will all the Psychs in Psychville
              drug before you
              donate enough
              for the IAS to stop them?

              Donate heroically so we can stop
              all the Psychs in Psychville
              from writing prescriptions
              for slavery in pill form and
              and head-zapping lobotomies

              Donate today
              or we will keep
              writing really bad
              poetry!

            • Jon Atack

              Heck, where’s mine?

      • Science Doc

        Charles Manson’s fiancé is under my bed.

        • Bury_The_Nuts

          Untie her then you bad Science doc….!

          • Sherbet

            Science Doc IS Charles Manson’s fiance.

            • Science Doc

              We’re just friends.

            • Sherbet

              Typo? Freudian? Or true fact?

            • Science Doc

              Ipad spell correct. Fiends is now friends.

            • Jimmy3

              Waste of a great typo, IMO

            • Science Doc

              Ok I’ll switch it back.

            • Science Doc

              Although now that I think about it, stability is critical to a long term relationship, and not many people have lived in the same place for the past 45 years.

            • Sherbet

              Well, there’s that. Not that it was Charlie’s choice, mind you.

            • Jimmy3

              I know. #1 on my list is “Stability.” Unfortunately, #2 is “Doesn’t have a swastika carved into their forehead.” It’s so hard to find that right someone, isn’t it?

            • Science Doc

              A youthful indiscretion.

        • Charles Manson

          Yeah, well, someone’s about to get a visit from a few members of my family to fix that.

          • Science Doc

            Is it Squeaky?

            • Charles Manson

              No, it’s some Ukrainian girls from Vegas.

            • Science Doc

              They sound like fun. Hope you can join us.

            • I thought it was a Venusian girl from Uranus.

          • Jon Atack

            Nice to see you here, Charlie. Rather than under my bed.

      • Jon Atack

        Ron is Xenu. The clue is the old cover of Dianetics: Evolution of a Science (from 1968) where we see white clad ‘loyal officers’ loading boxes of clusters onto a space freighter. As Hubbard said in a Flag Order, people will obey those who last betrayed them, which is why the Sea Org is modelled on the Galactic Confederacy (though why he’d base anything on an EE Doc Smith novel is beyond me). Charles Manson, and two other members of the Family, had received auditing. Manson had actually had quite a bit. He said that he would never have had the nerve to create a following without it. So, I’m checking under my bed, right now.

    • Robert Eckert

      Bob Duggan, COB told us that just being around you completely blows chunks for him.

    • Jon Atack

      Thank you for listening/I write just for you…

  • Narcissist

    “Material about the Moonies, Mark Twain on Christian Science (hilarious
    as ever), just about anything about cults, is grist to the mill.”

    Meh

    • Jimmy3

      Yeh

      • Bury_The_Nuts

        Like Death……..they seem to come in 3’s.

        • Jimmy3

          I think this one is just a cuddly kitty cat.

          • Bury_The_Nuts

            mmmKay….
            You get to pet him.

            • Jimmy3

              I’m a dog person. You go.

            • Stacy

              Normally as the “cat activist” I’d offer to step in; this time however…

            • Bury_The_Nuts

              Sssshhhhhhhhhh….be vewy, vewy quiet….

              Edit: troll is sleeping (and we didn’t even have to use big pharma to make him pass out)

    • I see your meh and I raise you to bleh.

  • Michael Leonard Tilse

    Thanks Jon, great material and a nice study schedule. A point Arnaldo makes which is similar to what I see in your essay, is that de-hypnosis (which I believe is what Scientology is) is done by widening the perspective or breadth of attention while hypnosis is done by narrowing the attention.

    Thanks so much for what you write. It helps.

  • Xique

    Thank you Jon, again and again.

    • Vaquera

      Hi, Xique. Let me know if you would like Tory or Steve Hassan’s email address. You can reach me at txvaquera AT gmail DOT com.

  • valshifter

    Am reading “Christian Science” by Mark Twain, I wander how much of his ideas LRH stole from Mary Baker Eddy, for starters, the verbal tech; she was the only one allowed to give the spiritual interpretation of the Bible thru her books. and verbal tech was discouraged or even considered a crime. “in Revelation x. She is the ‘mighty angel,’ or God’s highest thought to this age (verse 1)” [according to Mark Twain]
    At least LRH did not consider himself “the mighty angel” or did he? in the early days he claimed to be only a man, but then on OT 8 he claims to be the Beast himself, allocating himself a divinity card. well in this case a malign personality but never the less implies power and superiority to a simple mortal or wog like us. Satanology is stolen, stolen from everywhere.

  • Jon

    “Ticket to Heaven” is an excellent movie about cult brainwashing
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoavV7D74BU

  • Captain Howdy

    I would second Jon’s recommendation of seeking out and viewing The Devils except for the fact the film was butchered on numerous occasions by censors in the U.K and the U.S.A when it was released. I found a version at a video store in the East Village that has most of the missing footage restored and I see that version is for sale on Amazon. It is a Hieronymus Bosch painting brought to life.

    http://www.amazon.com/Devils-special-directors-Region-format/dp/B007S194OC

    http://youtu.be/xqBAKptamUk

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      I have never watched this movie. I always wanted to watch it………but I was too young.
      And then I forgot about it.
      My Mom wouldn’t let me go watch Lisztomania either.
      I still feel cheated.

      • Captain Howdy

        The Devils is a masterpiece..the rest of Ken Russel’s stuff belongs on MST3K, imo.

        • Bury_The_Nuts

          GAH!!!!

        • Stacy

          Did you just dis MST3k? Have you no class?!

          • Robert Eckert

            MST3k disses the movies that are on MST3k. I do not believe that Howdy was dissing the dissers. That would be meta-dissing.

            • Stacy

              True. Subtle difference. Which I missed.

      • Robert Eckert

        I saw a stage production once which was excellent.

    • That is a brilliant movie. Not actually over the top at all. (Well, OK, maybe a little, but it’s consistently over the top, not ironically.)

  • One of the books that helped me was a survey of NLP called Heart of the Mind by Steve and Connirae Andreas.

    http://www.amazon.com/Heart-Mind-Engaging-Neuro-Linguistic-Programming/dp/0911226311/

    Of particular interest might be Chapter 19, Timelines, because it is much richer than the Scn theory on the subject. A lot of books on NLP are very technical, but this one’s pretty conversational and does give example sessions. Just seeing there’s something familiar out there may help someone else.

  • Anonymous

    Secure sockets – awesome – and thanks!

    A perfect fit for the secure socks one frequently must employ here. Heh.

  • Captain Howdy

    It got awfully quiet around here round 8:00..Don’t let me find out you’re all watching It’s A Wonderful Life.

    • Observer

      I hate sappy, sentimental movies. Sue me!

      • Captain Howdy

        I’m watching Elmer Gantry on a local channel.

        • Observer

          Mr. Observer is binge watching Arrow on Netflix. I may go to the bedroom and watch whatever horribly cheesy movie is on SyFy.

        • Sherbet

          Oh, Mrs. Partridge! You are a naughty girl.

          • Captain Howdy

            Shirley was one hot girly back in the day.

            • Sherbet

              She was.

            • beauty for ashes

              totally shocked me when i saw it, didn’t she win an oscar?

    • Eclipse-girl

      Theres a college football game
      Wis vs Ohio

      • Sandy

        Come on, Badgers!!! You can do this!

        • Eclipse-girl

          We were blown out. I was saddened but it is only a game.
          Ohio outplayed us.

    • Observer

      I think I found a tree for you …

      F5

    • Sherbet

      Every time a bell rings, a scientologist blows.

    • Stacy

      Not on your life. I can’t stand Jimmy Stewart. Don’t know why.

      Now, I’ll watch White Christmas every time it’s on and get my fill of saccharine X-mas that way. And A Christmas Story at least once in memory of my dad, who just loved that movie.

      • noseinabk

        Ouch! I adore Jimmy Stewart. It’s a Wonderful Life and The Philadelphia Story are among my favorites to watch at least once a year. How could you not love a guy who wrote this ode to his dog? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwGnCIdHQH0

        • Stacy

          Ok, I’m a HUGE Katherine Hepburn fan, and the Philadelphia Story is my favorite movie of hers. But it’s in spite of Jimmy Stewart. Sorry

          • noseinabk

            I will just pretend I never read the second part of that reply. I am a such a sucker for a Hepburn movie that I refused to read the gossip written about her. My Mom asked if I wanted to read a book she read about Hepburn. Nope.

            • Stacy

              I admire her for being who and what she was in the era she lived in.

        • Baby

          Nose…. my hubby is Jimmy Stewart.. Same personality.. everything. Just so easy going. Never have seen him angry or stressed. Just Jimmy Stewart all the way.

          • noseinabk

            Baby, if that is true, anything happens to you I will console him for you.

            • Baby

              Hahah.. Well you have to let him FISH all he wants.. Oh.. and don’t expect him to dance.. and he doesn’t like musicals.

              He doesn’t like to shop. But everything else he is absolutely perfect. He cooks, cleans and does all the grocery shopping.

              I have NEVER heard him swear, belch or fart. ( Swear to God) . He is a True Gentleman…

              and has never tried to change me.. So if you are on board with all of that I will save him just for you! It would be my pleasure.

            • Cosmo Pidgeon

              I don’t know too many men that like musicals or shopping……I will bet 100 to one on the farting bit. He’s just discreet. A skill in itself.

            • Baby

              Hahahhahaa.. That is funny.. I need a Gay husband.

              I did forget to add.. He is discreet..but he does fart in his sleep once in awhile..and he would be so embarrassed if I told him.. So it’s my secret.. xo

            • Cosmo Pidgeon

              My wife snores like a horse and doesn’t believe it.

            • noseinabk

              We would boor each other to death. Proof that opposites attract. I retract my statement. My husband is the complete opposite of me. Loves to dance,social butterfly, no filter on what he will say and never met a stranger. We have never gone on a vacation that he did not run into someone he knows. Disney, Mexico, NC, Va, PA, NY, Canada.
              I do like to go fishing though.

            • Baby

              Absolutely.. opposites attract. I go for the the logical pragmatic. Because I am like a roller coaster ride at times.

              He is stable and my rock. He keeps me organized ( Do you have your sunglasses, hookah, keys etc. ) and I make him laugh.. Yes

              You and I would probably make a great couple nose..ha

            • noseinabk

              My Mom now lives in Winter Haven FL and is in Sarasota for the winter. If I ever visit, I will harass you into visiting with us!

            • Baby

              In a heartbeat!

        • Captain Howdy

          Awww…damn smoke is getting in my eyes.

          • Jo

            Me too.

          • noseinabk

            I posted it and can not watch it. It was a year before I could mow the lawn near my newfies grave and had to get my son or husband to finish mowing. Not long after he went, Obs lost her dog and someone put this link up. Never have I had such a hard time over losing a pet.

            • Captain Howdy

              I’m sorry for your loss and thank you for the vid.

            • noseinabk

              Sorry Howdy, I forgot that you lost a furbaby recently. I desperately want to get another and my daughter that grew up with him begs me to get her one. I just can not do it yet.

            • Jimmy3

              I understand that sentiment, but I don’t necessarily agree with it. Wouldn’t your guy want you to find another to join your family? It’s never a replacement. It can’t be. But there are so many in shelters that need a good home and a loving family. Rescuing a new puppy does not mean you forget those you’ve loved and lost.

            • noseinabk

              He was not our first loss. We had two labs and a Chesapeake before him. He was just that dog that was above and beyond in intelligence and loyalty. We will get another newf. Just not ready yet.

            • Eclipse-girl

              Please give yourself the time you need.
              You will now when its the right time.

              I lost a cat many years ago that has been replaced. I love my other cats since Birdie, but Birdie and I had a special bond.

            • Jimmy3

              You’re not even supposed to be mowing the lawn. Future Howdy said so.

            • noseinabk

              I love mowing the lawn! You can not hear anyone when a riding mower is going.

          • Jimmy3

            You’re not even supposed to be smoking. Future Howdy said so.

            • Captain Howdy

              One thing at a time.

            • Jimmy3

              Salami method. Good call.

            • Baby

              See..See.. You got it!

            • Elephant!

            • Jimmy3

              We had elephant for thanksgiving one year and I got all hoof and tusk. It wasn’t good. No more elephant.

        • Frodis73

          Sob. It’s been a little more than 2yrs and I still miss my guy up there to the left. Best. Dog. Ever.

        • Jon Atack

          Magic Town is a cute movie about advertising. Philadelphia Story is simply one of the greatest films ever mad.

    • Jimmy3

      It’s A Wonderful Footbaw

    • Sandy

      Wisc vs Ohio

      • Sandy

        E-G … where are those Badgers that whipped the Gophers butts? Come on!!!

        • Jimmy3

          They are there. But the Buckeyes are not the Gophers. OSU can play with any team in the country besides Oregon or Alabama.

          • Sandy

            Bologna. Wisc can play with Ohio. I don’t know what this game is about … Wisc is better than this.

            • Jimmy3

              But it’s 38-0 at the half. With what was the 3rd string QB, making his first start. So I respectfully say that Wisconsin cannot play with OSU.

            • Sandy

              *sob*

            • Jimmy3

              It’s not too late. Jump on the Buckeye Bandwagon and root for GA Tech to beat FSU. Then the mighty Midwest will be represented in the playoffs. Big Ten pride go.

            • Sandy

              Well, of course I want GAT to beat FSU. But, but Wisc & Minn are like sisters. If we can’t win, we want the other to win.

            • Jimmy3

              Girls don’t play footbaw. You can’t root for sisters.

            • Sandy

              I tried to down vote, but it didn’t take

            • Jimmy3

              45-0

            • Sandy

              Now, you are being mean …

            • Sandy

              I need E-G here to help me defend …

            • Jimmy3

              They need someone to help defend. I’m not so sure Eclipse-girl will help, but it couldn’t hurt at this point.

            • Eclipse-girl

              I got hung up on a phone call.
              I can’t defend the poor performance of the Badgers.

            • (refresh)

            • Jimmy3

              I’ve never had my ass kicked by a girl, and I’d like to keep it that way.

            • AND she has 10 friends XD

            • Eclipse-girl

              I played football in the front yard with my brother. 😉

              I understand the game better than same. I do not bother trying to know all the stars on the 32 teams.
              Since moving to Wisc, and understanding the lore of the Pack, the ownership of the Pack, the non profit status of the Pack (not talking NFL – our team is a non profit – it does a great deal for the community of Green Bay) – How can you not think that GB is the greatest team in all of pro sports?

            • Jimmy3

              I would agree that GB is the greatest team in all pro sports. And they’re my pick to beat NE in the Super Bowl. Safe pick, I know, but it seems right. But the Wisconsin Badgers looked terrible. And I’m not sure this blowout is enough to move OSU up. Even though they would beat FSU/TCU. Kinda bummed.

            • Eclipse-girl

              They did look terrible.
              Coach Anderson is going to take some heat.
              Why weren’t they prepared for Ohio?
              But Ohio knew the game Wisconsin had was the running game, and they played their defense to stop the run on every play.

              I feel a little sad for Melvin Gordon because I think he is good.
              He didn’t get to shine in the first 3 quarters and at 45 – 0, we decided to minimize our misery.

            • Eclipse-girl

              very true, except I still have antipathy towards the Vikings.
              We understand the cold.

              Bret should never have gone to the Vikings. It was a bad move that will take some more time to heal

            • Robert Eckert

              Wisconsin can play with Ohio. But apparently they can’t play with Ohio State.

            • Eclipse-girl

              We should be. But Stave is not a good passing QB.

          • lucille austero

            Ducks all the way!

            • Vaquera

              OOOOOOOOOOOOO

    • Cosmo Pidgeon

      Ha Ha Captain! My wife is watching that right now in between working on her computer. I love that story. The Snowman is my favorite though. No dialogue, just pencil animation and music.

  • nottrue

    They are looking to rip you off…..Must be W.I.S.E

    • That depends on where they draw the line between the completely secular business courses that have nothing to do with forcing your religion on employees, and the religious courses that are First Amendment protected… (Where they draw it this week or retroactively, that is.)

  • Peter McMahon

    Some good references here. I left with my wife in Sept. of ’82 and it took a long while to process things. Reading books and articles I wasn’t supposed to read as a Scientologist helped speed up the process.

    But I had been primed earlier, while still in the Sea Org. I took over from Jeff Hawkins as Advance Magazine editor. The main part of the magazine was the monthly article on Man’s Spiritual History. I was not a very good writer and spent many hours pouring through our Advance Mag Library which included the “Man, Myth and Magic encyclopedia volumes. I also spent a lot of time at the Clearwater Library and found Plato’s Republic to be the most fascinating work. Reading his allegory of the cave which talks about becoming aware of higher levels of Consciousness blew my mind.

    After putting together an article based on Plato, I realized that he put the whole spiritual search thing much more eloquently than Hubbard and it rang more true. Of course I had to cap the article with the hackneyed, “And now with Scientology Plato’s dreams have been realized….. blah blah blah. Horseshit.

    So my mind was already stirred up before I left and later as I read Paulette Cooper’s book and Kaufman’s Road to Total Freedom and then John’s “Piece of Blue Sky” and Bent Corydon’s “Madmen or Messiah” I was set free. All before the internet.

    Don’t know why but I’m still fascinated by the whole subject. Mike Rinder’s blog has been so informative as has Marty’s, and Jeff Hawkins “Counterfeit Dreams” is perhaps the most vivid description of life in the cult released so far.

    Now we await the next defectors and their stories. How bad has it gotten since Mark Headley left. How is Miscavige tormenting his minions now? All will be revealed soon, I’m sure.

    • Tony Ortega

      John Brousseau is the last to leave who has spoken publicly. He ran from the base in 2010, five years after Marc Headley did..

      http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2012/07/scientology_john_brousseau_tom_cruise.php

      http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2012/07/scientology_john_brousseau_mareka_james.php

      • Peter McMahon

        That’s right, fascinating stuff as revealed at tonyortega.org The Underground Bunker. I follow it every day. Learned about turning burled wood into dashboard paneling for Tom Cruises custom Scientology Slave produced Van.

      • Eclipse-girl

        It is time for another major executive to blow.

      • Jon Atack

        A splendid piece.

    • Baby

      Peter glad to see you again!! Oh we are all fascinated in it.. although I will add.. Fasinatingly obsessed..ha

    • Graham

      Peter- interesting that you mention Plato’s cave http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave Back in the 70s someone told me that story in an attempt to get me INTO a cult. Allegedly us mere mortals are like the prisoners chained in the cave, able only to see real life via shadows of it on the wall of the cave. If I joined their cult and followed the practises laid down by their guru I’d be able to release myself from the cave and see life as it really is. That was a cult which lasted 20 years before descending into chaos after it was discovered that the leadership was preaching one thing whilst doing the exact opposite.

    • Jon Atack

      Yes, Plato’s shadowy cave is a revealing notion. Then you have the fish caught by the shadow bars on that African lake or the lecture about Lord Dunsany’s story about the monastery that fell as predicted after a thousand years, and the villager who walked past the despondent guards, to find that the Holy of Holies was empty (‘What IT VIIIs aren’t ‘at cause over physical matter, energy, space and time’ as the odl Bridge promised for so many years?). I remember reading the Dunsany story in Advance and wondering if there was a message there.

      Kaufman wrote Inside Scientology (not to be confused with Reitman’s book and the title is not the only thing she borrowed for her ‘first objective history’) and Roy Wallis wrote The Road to Total Freedom. I too loved Jeff’s book. Marc Headley’s excellent Blown for Good has a couple of the funniest stories – the one about the guy whose parents called him ‘Power’ made me laugh out loud. And Jenna’s book is very scary, too. Among exmembers, one of the most poignant is Helen O’Brien’s Dianetics in Limbo. It made me cry, as have many exmember accounts. And Tony’s book will be brilliant, too. Oh, and watch out for Steve Cannane’s.

      I’m guessing that you still find it fascinating because it is. There is no story like it – a lonely, obese, spotty kid worshipped by his granddad decides to hypnotise the world into believing he created the universe and everything that’s in it. He creates a ‘religion’ with its own intelligence agency, fools the IRS (though that was actually his disciple -the one who used his master’s money to gamble and whore, we’re told), and has 40,000 people bow down and worship him. And he leaves half a billion dollars to an organization that exists solely to perpetuate his reputation. ‘Look on my works ye mighty, and despair.’

      I’m still fascinated and it will be 40 years since Hubbard first caught my attention this very week.

  • Baby

    I was on forum..got text friend in bar.. good band ( blues/rock) dropped everything. Just got home. Tried to answer everyone. If I didn’t I’m sorry..

    Will get caught up.. That is all.. 10-4

  • Mike Leopold

    I’m not certain it qualifies as “biblical retribution” but the mudslides which apparently caused significant property damage (thankfully no people were hurt) on the anniversary of Lisa McPherson’s death at the hands of Scientology seem to be much more than mere coincidence.
    Perhaps a harbinger of things to come, but without any doubt it is irrefutable evidence of the completely delusional state called “Operating Thetan.”

    • Jimmy3

      They hit the day before her anniversary. But maybe that still counts.

  • Lady Squash

    What a great list! Thank you Jon. And he does have rotten teeth in the video “The Shrinking World of L. Ron Hubbard”. I am thinking that that is a sign of mental illness since he had the money to take care of himself. What a mess he was.

    • Jimmy3

      He was afraid of dentists.

        • Cosmo Pidgeon

          Could be so but my experience has been that poor dental health is a result of poverty mostly. In his case yeah, most certainly a form of mental illness. I’m not a professional in the field of mental health. ( Oh yeah ,I used to be when I was a Scientologist) but I would not guess depression. Something worse.

      • And barbers.

        • noseinabk

          And women.

          • And college professors.

            • MaxSpaceman

              and afraid of the lancing of sebaceous cysts on one’s forehead

          • Artoo45

            And children.

      • Baby

        and the TRUTH

      • Lady Squash

        Jimmy, Sounds like a phobia. Scientology could have helped him with that. Such a shame he didn’t take advantage of his own discoveries.

  • noseinabk

    Good night bunker and Good morning night shift ( Hi DoDo) . Posting my new favorite lullaby I learned from Howdy. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FO8iatdgse4

    • Love it! Sweet dreams, Nosei.

    • Hingle McCringleberry

      great choice! g’night.

      • Sherbet

        Good morning. You must be the early early morning shift.

        • What are you doing, being up in Boston at this hour?

  • Ten Aug

    Thank you Jon.

    For all that you have done.

    Just bought another copy of blue sky for a friend… Saves me explaining everything and it’s a good read too. I hope lots more get bought before Christmas…:-)

  • George M. White

    Awesome Jon, Thanks for the essay.
    After more than forty years, the key out of the cult for me was to recognize my own
    simple, inner statement of desire based on hard, relentless work to achieve a goal.
    Hubbard took possession of this desire and used it to his own ends.
    Hubbard said that “Survive” was the common denominator. He knew
    how to manipulate and steal this mental process from his readings of Crowley.
    By the way, my readings in 1989 included:
    1. St Augustine, The City of God
    2. St Francis of Assisi, Ode to Brother Sun.
    3. Rahula Walpola, What the Buddha Taught.

    You are making history with great research into the cult mindset.

  • There is a detailed description of the successful intervention of a 27–year veteran of Scientology in my new book “Cults Inside Out: How People Get In and Can Get Out.” The book also has a chapter about Scientology, a history of modern cults and a very detailed step-by-step explanation of the cult intervention process. The book incorporates with footnotes the research of Margaret Singer, Robert Lifton, Robert Cialdiani and many others in its explanation of the synthesis of coercive persuasion and influence techniques commonly called “cult brainwashing” along with chapters on assessment, coping strategies and recovery. The documentary “Captive Minds” (1983) directed by Pierre Lasry, is included in the bibliography and suggested along with other films such as “Die Welle” (English: “The Wave”) a 2008 German film directed by Dennis Gansel.

  • Edward Whalley

    Mock up yourself as Supreme Ruler.
    mock up lrh.
    Mock up that he is at your feet, indeed a footstool.
    Feel your feet warmed by his back.
    Mock up that he is asking you for the Answer, with tears in his eyes.
    Run this until floating needle.
    Extra credit: record answer to him.

    If necessary, apply standard counter spell: Nothing human is alien to me.

  • James Mcguigan

    Thank you for this john

    a very largely contributing factor to my decision to leave was as you said, parallels found in works of both fiction and non-fiction. It creates those uncomfortable “what if” moments that begin the process of toppling the mental house of cards. Some of these are already mentioned but some works that i strongly remember having an unsettling effect on me are:

    Shutter Island (Film)
    The Most Hated Family in America (Louis Theroux Documentary)
    Brave New World (Book)
    Fahrenheit 451 (Book)
    The Matrix (Film)
    1984 (which you mentioned) had the strongest effect on me
    and oddly enough a book called Remote Viewing Secrets by Joseph McMoneagle which is something i know a lot of scientologists are already interested in. The great thing about this book is that before it gets into the remote viewing techniques it goes quite in depth into discussing how one’s mental philosophy for perceiving the world dictates not only their actions but also the world they see, and it does so without knocking any religion. I remember when i read this i had no philosophy on life other than scientology views and wasn’t even aware of the most basic mechanics behind perception and mental philosophy.

  • Sitkajo

    Hey guys: I am following this other religious abuse controversy with a mega church in Seattle called Mars Hill.
    Some ex members are preparing to file a civil RICO lawsuit against the leadership.
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton/2014/12/08/former-executive-elders-of-mars-hill-church-may-face-rico-lawsuit/
    It seems like something ex-scientology should try.
    Scientology has always struck me as something like organized crime and that RICO would be a natural legal tool.

  • flyonthewall

    test

  • mockingbird

    Um…to kill a MOCKINGBIRD !!? Seriously , I already told Jon I took my very name from that book ! Knowing as a critic who COMPLETELY rejects Hubby and ALL his ” tech ” I would get a tremendous amount of free disgust , disdain and rancor from indies and exes , yeah !!!

    I want to thank Jon for this article as I get people with family in pleading for something to do to free their minds and not antagonize them !

    These are great resources and I look forward to learning a lot more.

    Oh , and regarding the taking ideas from him : he has inspired so much of my work and given me so many clues you should assume unless I state otherwise that everything I write on the tech is at least partially ” stealing ” from him .

    Really , in my initial research long ago ( Jan 2014 ) I read all the Mythbusting pieces and never believe a hypnotist and Scientology is an implant and those really set me on the path I am on today .

    I wrote an email to Jon detailing many of the ways that helped me and have written on recovery beginnings at ESMB as well :http://www.forum.exscn.net/showthread.php?37734-Recovery-Beginnings

    Needless to say I have other stuff on the tech largely inspired by Jon’s work as well :http://www.forum.exscn.net/showthread.php?37203-MOCKINGBIRD-RECOMMEND-S-A-SEQUENCE-OF-STUDY

  • Mockingbird

    I want to thank Jon for writing this as I had asked him about this very issue before he wrote this article . I have some thoughts of my own and threw up a post at my blog on it too .http://mbnest.blogspot.com/2015/02/on-exes-letting-go-at-differing-rates.html