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More from a secretly-recorded executive griping about Scientology’s sad state of affairs

Andres_Rodriguez4Former Scientology Sea Org worker Chris Shelton is helping us decode a remarkable audio recording, secretly made, which captures a man named Andres Rodriguez (pictured) giving a briefing to an audience of Scientology non-staff “publics.”

Rodriguez carries the title of Senior Case Supervisor of the Western United States (Snr C/S WUS), and he’s also notable because at one time he was married to the “handler” of actress Katie Holmes, a woman named Jessica Feshbach. (Feshbach is today married to former Scientology spokesman Tommy Davis, and they are both out of the Sea Org.)

In this third portion of the audio recording (Go here for Part One and Part Two), we hear more jargon from Rodriguez as he explains to his audience at an org somewhere in the US that he has complaints about the way they’ve been doing things. Shelton, and our oldtimers in the commenting community, tell us they’re pretty surprised by what Rodriguez has been saying — the Scientology he’s describing is very different than what they experienced in past years.

Shelton and others tell us this is a result of alterations made by Scientology leader David Miscavige, who is dealing with dwindling membership as well as some members having topped out at the furthest reaches of the “Bridge to Total Freedom.” So he has convinced many of them to start over at low-leveled courses, and Rodriguez is complaining that they aren’t doing things “standardly.”

For people new to Scientology watching, it’s a chance to hear what goes on inside a Scientology facility without filters, and for the longtime watchers, there are interesting shifts and changes to policy that we’re told confirm that Scientology is under great stress right now.

Recently, John Travolta was asked about the dark portrayal of Scientology in Alex Gibney’s movie Going Clear. He said he wasn’t interested in seeing the movie, and he did what all celebrities are trained to do — he recommended that people “read a book” to learn more. But here we have a real peek inside what happens in Scientology — and it’s odd and troubling. Give the tape a listen, then Chris will define some of the terms and give us his analysis….



Chris, help us out with the jargon…

Intensive or intensive auditing: 12.5 hours of auditing delivered within a 7-day period of time. A person could receive this Mon – Fri evenings for 2.5 hours a day or over a weekend or during the weekdays. According to Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, getting less auditing than this each week will result in not getting the expected gains and will be a waste of time.

Scientology Drug Rundown: An auditing action done before a person achieves Clear that addresses drugs and medicines a person has taken. The E-meter is used to find which drugs are “charged” and then Scientology processes are used to locate times the person felt he attained a spiritual release of some kind using that drug or medicine. This was intended to “run out” the reasons a person took the drugs in the first place.

Four flows: In Scientology auditing, any subject can be addressed on different “flows” meaning different ways a person can experience something.The four flows are (0) Self to self; (1) Self to others; (2) Others to self; (3) Others to others. These are used in many different kinds of auditing such as the Scientology Drug Rundown. Example of the actual commands used might go like this:

Flow 0 – Recall a time you gave yourself cocaine
Flow 1 – Recall a time you gave another cocaine
Flow 2 – Recall a time another gave you cocaine
Flow 3 – Recall a time another gave another cocaine

Rehab: A Scientology auditing procedure. Rehab in this case means to “restore a former capacity or condition” and where “release” means when a person separates from his reactive mind or some part of it. According to Scientology, one reason people take drugs is to attain a “release state” where they feel wonderful or amazing because the drugs cause them to be separated from some part of the reactive mind. The idea with rehab is to restore a previous state of release which for whatever reason has been blocked or suppressed by a person.

Out-tech: An instance of violating or not following the exact procedures Hubbard laid out for auditing or doing some other procedure in Scientology.

Op Pro by Dup: Opening Procedure by Duplication, an Objective auditing process in Scientology. It involves walking back and forth between a book and a bottle over and over again for hours, each time picking up the book or bottle and telling the auditor its color, weight and temperature and then putting it back in exactly the same place.

Q&A: In Scientology, this means that a person did not finish something he started but instead bounced off or got distracted onto doing something else. It’s not a good thing.

Tone Arm: The large, numbered dial which an auditor adjusts in response to what the needle is doing in order to keep the needle on its dial.

Blowdown: When an auditor adjusts the Tone Arm downward significantly in order to put the needle back on the dial, this is supposed to indicate a big release of trauma for the preclear. Blowdowns in auditing indicate good progress is being made.

Reach and Withdraw: A procedure in Scientology consisting entirely of a person reaching for or touching something and then letting go or moving away from it, over and over again until the person feels better about that thing or has some realization about it. Reach and Withdraw can be done on not only a physical object in front of you, but also parts of one’s own body or a space such as a room or building.

Psychosomatic: In Dianetics and Scientology, a pain or some kind of non-optimum physical condition caused entirely by some past traumatic episode and not having any medical basis for existing.

Aberrations: A mental, spiritual or physical disability caused by some past traumatic incident, causing a person to behave irrationally or perceive incorrectly.

Cracked cases: A term indicating that the person was not making any progress in his auditing and now he is.

HGC: Hubbard Guidance Center – the section in a Scientology organization where professional auditing is delivered.

Briefing Course: The Saint Hill Special Briefing Course – the most extensive training course taught in Scientology covering the chronological development of the entire subject.

Ivory Tower: A Case Supervisor is supposed to do his work in seclusion, using only the information in the preclear’s folder to judge what to do with the preclear. This is called the Ivory Tower Rule.


And Chris sent us a really great distillation of this thoughts on this segment of the tape. We’re reproducing it in full here…

The main thing that Andres is talking about in this section is scheduling, but there are some other very good tidbits as well.

Public service scheduling has always been a bugbear with staff and Sea Org members. Ever since I was a course supervisor in Santa Barbara back in 1988, getting public to attend course or get auditing “intensively” was a near Herculean task. We had to constantly sit them down and convince, i.e. “hard sell”, them to be in the org more. Honestly, most wanted to attend only once or twice a week and use the rest of their time off work to get on with the rest of their lives. They actually wanted to do things other than Scientology like go to the movies, spend time with their kids, fix up their homes, go on vacations, etc. All of this we addressed with a policy letter from Hubbard called “SOFT SELL” which had a section entitled “Dilettante-ism” where Hubbard lambasted anyone who was off doing anything else but Scientology, stating outright that they were out-ethics and that anyone who was pushing anything else was a Suppressive Person. This put Ron on our side, but we couldn’t just sit there and call our public names. They didn’t like being called dilettantes and would understandably get pissed off about it. So the trick was to “push purpose” and “play the Birthday Game” and that sort of thing. We tried to convince them that the reason we were so intent on them being in the org more was because we cared about them as beings and we wanted them to move through their services quickly so that they would attain Total Spiritual Freedom that much faster. It was only when none of that worked that we resorted to telling them the real reason we needed them to come in and we would literally start begging: We needed to get our statistics up.

Every Scientology staff member is run with a great deal of pressure to produce more and more of whatever it is they are doing each week. As a Course Supervisor, my product was completed courses, so my statistic (my “stat”) was the Number of Student Completions each week. By Thursday at 2pm each week, I needed that stat to be more than it had been the prior Thursday at 2pm. I didn’t care about people moving up the Bridge or purpose or any of that stuff. What I cared about was not being in trouble with my senior if my “stats were down” because that would mean trouble for me. So we would do all sorts of things to get our stats up, including having public coming in more often and even staying up all night on Wednesday night working with them to get them through their courses before the magical Thursday 2pm struck. I can’t tell you how many crazy things I used to do in order to get my stats up.

Of course, by getting people through services quickly, this also gets them paying more rapidly for their next service and so more and more money comes in. That’s what it is really all about when you come down to it.

Scheduling was a problem in the 1980s and it was a problem in the 1990s and it continues to be a problem today. Because while people do get quite fanatical about Scientology beliefs and the indoctrination, it is also the “me” religion and the Scientology public are only willing to go so far with it impinging on their schedules and their lives. It’s an interesting paradox and one I’ve always been intrigued by. They all pay lip service to the idea that it’s the most important thing in the universe, but don’t let that course supervisor know that I’m going to play golf on Wednesday instead of coming on course!

The other fascinating thing here is that Andres lets everyone in on how “un-ideal” things are at the most wonderful place in Scientology — the PAC Base in Los Angeles. He says that there are 160 people doing the Survival Rundown, or 80 twinships. Considering that literally every single Scientologist is being called on to do this SRD, regardless of where they are on The Bridge, to have only 80 twinships working it tells you everything you need to know about Scientology’s “straight up and vertical expansion” in Los Angeles. Los Angeles has the highest concentration of Scientologists in the world. There really are thousands of them there. Yet they sure aren’t doing their Survival Rundown. I wonder what they could be doing instead?

Andres’ math is also a bit creative. He says there are 1,100 hours of co-auditing each week, with 160 people doing this auditing. That is not an average of 10.5 hours for each person like he says. It’s actually an average of 6.9 hours per person. I doubt anyone in the audience listening to Andres did the math or caught him out on this, but we can see that despite all his rhetoric about cracking down on intensive scheduling, nothing has really changed in 30 or more years on this. Scientology is still loaded with “dilettantes.”

One last amusing note here is the process to “Hit the Wall” which he mentions at the end of this clip. That command is taken literally and it’s run just like any other Objectives process, over and over again for hours. So yes, Scientologists are not just paying thousands of dollars to run in endless circles on the Cause Resurgence Rundown at Flag, but they are also paying good money to stand and pound their fists to bits on padded walls doing the “Hit the Wall” process. One can only marvel at the stupidity. I’m sure if there was a process to stand on one leg for hours, they’d do that too. And just imagine the success stories we could read from that one!

— Chris Shelton


Bonus photos from our tipsters

On Saturday, this lavish party was thrown in Copenhagen to raise money for yet another “Ideal Org” project — specifically the “EU Continent Ideal Org.” But hang on, didn’t AOSHEU, the Advanced Org in Copenhagen, already go “Ideal”? “The Class V Org in Copenhagen is the target. It is actually the Copenhagen Org, but it is planned to be used as a ‘model’ ideal org and training facility for Scientology staff from all over Europe (much like the LA Org),” says our tipster…


Alex Gibney tonight at the Going Clear premiere in Toronto…




On May 14, you will be able to purchase ‘The Unbreakable Miss Lovely’ from Amazon in either electronic or print format, and simultaneously in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia.

The book will not be available for pre-order before that date. It is going live for sale on Thursday, May 14, and not a moment earlier. And hey, that’s just a few weeks away, so you won’t have to wait long.

Our appearances…

May 16: Santa Barbara Humanist Society (with Paulette Cooper), 3:00 pm
May 17: Center for Inquiry-West Los Angeles, 4773 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood, 11 am (with Paulette Cooper)
May 17: CFI Orange County (Costa Mesa), 4:30 pm (with Paulette Cooper)
May 20, San Diego We’re getting some help from locals trying to assist the San Diego Association for Rational Inquiry (SDARI) find a venue for us (appearance with Paulette Cooper)
May 22: San Francisco (with Jamie DeWolf and Paulette Cooper)

(Finalizing a New York City event in early June)

June 20: Chicago
June 22/23: Toronto (with Paulette Cooper)

June 27/28: Florida (with Paulette Cooper)

July 12: Washington DC, Center for Inquiry


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 4, 2015 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to 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 cover to cover with the help of LA attorney and former church member Vance Woodward

UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield


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