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That time L. Ron Hubbard was hit by lightning while wearing full armor: It’s science!

hapislideYesterday, in our Sunday Funnies, we showed you a flier (pictured, right) announcing a set of L. Ron Hubbard lectures that the folks at Scientology’s London Ideal Org claim were never previously released, and that would be on sale for £200.

“Ron talks about the anatomy of the body and gives a glimpse at one of his past lives in the nineteenth century when he wrote a textbook on the subject,” the flier said, and we thought that sounded great. But never before released? The flier itself said the lectures of the Special Hubbard Professional Auditor Course were recorded in 1959. Have they really been under wraps all this time?

Well, of course not. And it didn’t take us long to find an excerpt from one of the lectures referenced in the flier. We think you’ll find it fascinating as L. Ron Hubbard describes what it’s like to be an immortal spirit that gets into the most embarrassing hijinks when the body dies and he has to go find a new one.

To help illustrate that problem, Hubbard tells us about a couple of specific past lives he experienced, one of which ended when he was struck by lightning while wearing a full set of armor. It happened when he was an English knight, some centuries back, and his disembodied spirit then traveled to Bavaria for his next life.

Here, give it a listen…



Isn’t it fascinating to hear Hubbard’s idiosyncratic cadence and word choice and emphasis? Biographers like Janet Reitman and Lawrence Wright talk about Hubbard’s “charisma” and “magnetism,” but listening to Hubbard’s actual words, we’re not sure those descriptions really apply.

Jon Atack has explained to us that Scientologists must take these words of Hubbard at face value — they literally constitute Scientology’s “scripture” and must be read literally.

But what do you think? How credible was Hubbard when he told his audience in 1959 that he’d once been struck and killed by lightning while dressed in full armor? Do you think he believed it? Do you think he expected his audience to buy it?

It’s really a shame that Scientology itself keeps Hubbard’s actual lectures and written works under wraps. If more people were aware of lectures like this, would it help or hinder recruitment?

We look forward to your thoughts on this remarkable lecture excerpt.


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 30, 2014 at 07:00

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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

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

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer


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