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As Scientology declines, its members are even giving up on their spooky super powers


We want to thank Artoo45 for alerting us to the latest Advance! magazine, which has always been one of our favorite Scientology publications. It’s in Advance! that the “OT Phenomena” column runs. Jefferson Hawkins, who once edited Advance!, tells us that column was one of the most popular things the publications division put out. And we can see why.

It’s in this column that the highest-leveled Scientologists, the privileged and wealthy few who have reached the “Operating Thetan” levels, share a glimpse of the way they were bending the universe to their wills with the superhuman powers promised at the upper end of Scientology’s “Bridge to Total Freedom.” And back in the day, oh what powers and abilities those OTs had.

If you’re one of our longtime readers, you may remember excerpts that we ran at the Village Voice from copies of Advance! magazine from the 1970s and later. In those columns, Scientologists would relate that they could leave their bodies at will, travel across space and time, and perform all sorts of miracles (or figure out, from several states away, what the color of your patio furniture was).

Former church members have told us that these stories were important because they gave lower-leveled Scientologists the motivation to keep plugging away at their courses and forking over ever-increasing amounts of money. It was a powerful incentive, to get into the OT levels and begin to enjoy these spooky powers that were hinted at in Advance! magazine.


More recently, however, we’ve noticed something of a decline in the OT Phenomena column, which perhaps mirrors the decline of Scientology itself. Is it a result of having fewer people to share their stories? Or have Scientologists begun to give up on some of the more outlandish perceptions about what the “technology” of L. Ron Hubbard is capable of?

We don’t know. But as you’ll see in these most recent OT stories, the tales being related are little more than coincidences that result from confirmation bias. Where are the great ghost stories? The tales of wild exploits while exteriorized? Are even the superhuman dreams of Scientologists dying along with the church itself? Judge for yourself.

MEST Universe

I live in a village 7,000 feet above sea level. In the winter when it is extremely dry we have to burn firebreaks to protect all the pine plantations from fires. Two days ago my neighbor was burning firebreaks when suddenly a gusty wind came and turned into a howling gale, and the firebreaks turned into a raging, hungry fire. It quickly devoured a whole valley of trees and came roaring toward my farm. Balls of fire leapt 50 feet through the air, and I was worried it would jump across to my land and gallop down toward our farmhouse. I just decided that everything would be okay and that the firefighters would stop it. Ten minutes later a guy who’d been helping came and told me that it was quite amazing what had happened in the forest. A fireball had jumped across the road from the small trees and onto my land. It was burning fiercely when suddenly the wind just turned right around the opposite direction and the fire went out. I felt very pleased because I knew I had done that — I.W.

Making Postulates Stick

I find that one of the biggest things that people want to do as an OT is to make their postulates stick. Since completing OT III a couple of weeks ago, my ability to do this has skyrocketed. As an example, the other day as I pulled out of my driveway I decided I needed to find a gardener. I continued with my errands, went to the bank and met a neighbor. We chatted for a few minutes and she said, “By the way, if you’re interested, I just started using this really good gardener…” Next, there were several purchases I needed to make. I decided that I was just going to be more efficient and find everything in the first store. As I was paying, the cashier said, “It’s funny that you selected these items. We just started carrying them. Normally you’d have needed to go to a specialty grocery store for them.” I had a list of selectees and some fellow OTs I needed to contact. Two originated calls, one sent me an email, the other I saw at the store and the last one I did have to call (but even she said, “I knew you were going to call, and I was trying to get to you first, but you beat me to it!”). These are just simple daily cycles, but that’s life for me as an OT. — W.B.

Comm Lines

For my work, I deal with a lot of people. Many of them are very busy professionals who very often do not answer their phones or are hard to reach. One day, I didn’t really feel like listening to the phone ringing and answering machines all day, so I decided they were going to all start contacting me. I made a few calls, but as an OT, I knew my intention was very strong and that they would just start reaching out to me. The next day, I started getting answers in. I saw that they had received my intention and were starting to communicate back to me. In fact, it worked so well that the receptionist in my office was complaining that so many people were calling in, and she had to keep taking messages even after I had left work for the day. — F.W.

With Power of Choice

While on my OT Levels, my postulates started to work much more effectively. On the way to session one day, I decided to handle a long incomplete cycle. I had started installing a new energy system in my house but had never completed the cycle. I decided to contact the company but didn’t have the number. I called my wife, but she couldn’t find it either. Five minutes later my mobile rang. It was the company asking if they should come out the next day to look at my house. Of course I agreed. I checked with my wife, and she had not called them. The next day, 15 minutes before they were scheduled, I thought maybe I should have called a second company and asked for a better offer. The doorbell rang and outside was a man who said he came to see my house and wanted to give me an offer on a new energy system. We walked around for half an hour, discussing my options. My wife interrupted us and told me that there were two men from other companies outside who also came to give me offers! It is really amazing to see how well postulates work now. I got the job done and for a much better price! — J.J.

Power of a Decision

In order to get my driver’s license renewed, I had to get a mandatory eye exam done. I already wore glasses and didn’t really think anything of it. I went to go and do the eye test, and the results said that I needed to get stronger glasses. This really bothered me, and I disagreed. I suddenly cognited on all types of considerations and problems related to sight, glasses and so on. I went home and told my wife that I no longer wanted to deal with problems with my eyesight or have to go through the trouble of getting new glasses. I decided that is it with the Q and A. I was done with glasses. I spotted the original postulate I had made on why I should see badly, and it blew completely. I went back the next day to the optician, did a new test, and the optician said, “I don’t understand how this is possible, but you can see perfectly and don’t need any glasses.” Of course, he didn’t know he was dealing with an OT. — G.E.

Controlling MEST

I was mid my OT Levels when I went on a weekend car trip. I was driving for a few hours on a highway when it started raining. The road was very slick and the visibility was bad. Suddenly, the lights of the car in front of me flashed as they unexpectedly slammed on their brakes. I had no chance to react and there was nowhere for me to turn off. I had to stop immediately to avoid an accident, but it was physically impossible to stop that fast at the speed I was going. I knew this was the only way. I pushed down fully on the brake pedal, and decided I was not going to have an accident. After a seemingly endless moment, my car stopped. I had the distance of a hand span between my bumper and the car in front of me. By the laws of physics this was not possible, but as an OT it was possible. — E.F.

Speaking of Scientology publications, what’s up with Freedom magazine?

Scientology’s chief propaganda organ retooled after spending several years as a cartoonish smear sheet and took on a more earnest gloss as it published monthly from July 2014 to September 2015. Then it went dark, and started up again as a bi-monthly with issues in April/May and June/July 2016, but here we’re more than halfway into August/September, and there’s no new issue.

Has moving into the spanking new offices at the Scientology Media Productions studio in Los Angeles slowed down publication? David Miscavige sure doesn’t seem to be in a rush about putting anything out from that new complex. Even Freedom is dragging. We’ll just have to wait, apparently.


Taco trucks on every corner

Jeffrey Augustine found this one for us, and it’s almost too good to be true.

No doubt you’ve noticed the hilarity that ensued after “Latinos for Trump” founder Marco Gutierrez told an MSNBC host that if Hillary Clinton were to be elected, “You’re going to have taco trucks on every corner.”


Not only was this a beautiful vision for the future, Augustine pointed out that one person who might be thrilled with taco trucks on every corner is Scientology leader David Miscavige.

At the website Scientology has set up to trash David’s father, Ron Miscavige, and his memoir, Ruthless, the church has posted numerous pages smearing Ron. But it has also posted happy testimonials from Scientology Sea Org workers talking about what a great guy David Miscavige is. And in one video, featuring International Management executive Mollie Hoertling, Miscavige is described as a guy who really appreciates a good taco truck. We’re not kidding. Here, see the website’s helpful transcript yourself…


“Abnormally normal.” OK, if you say so.

In our experience, Scientologists tend to be a little more on the politically conservative side, and we’ve noticed that quite a few ex-Scientologists are supporting Donald Trump. But with taco trucks in the offing, Miscavige has even more incentive to instruct his followers to vote Democratic this election.


Shilling for Scientology Down Under

We’ve heaped a lot of praise on Australian journalists for the work they do on Scientology and its controversies, in particular TV journos Steve Cannane (who is now in England) and Bryan Seymour, who was all over yesterday’s grand opening of an “Advanced Org” outside of Sydney.

But it’s good to remember that not everyone is Bryan Seymour. Get a load of Channel 9’s happy coverage of the grand opening, which included a tour inside.


What Channel 9’s Mark Burrows doesn’t point out (and probably doesn’t know) is that the woman who showed him around and provided a line of happy bullshit, Scientology spokeswoman Erin Banks, is the daughter of Paula Tyler, one of Scientology’s most notorious spies, who helped to frame journalist Paulette Cooper for a felony back in 1972, when the church was doing everything it could to destroy Paulette’s life.

It was Paula Tyler who was sent in to befriend Paulette and get an apartment in her building. She then brought in super spy Don Alverzo, calling himself Jerry Levin, who eventually moved in with Paulette herself from May to September, 1973, and provided daily reports to the church about what Paulette was saying while she faced trial for a felony she’d been framed for. For more about that operation and how it came out, see our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely.

Maybe Mark Burrows ought to pick up a copy.


3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on September 5, 2016 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information about the book, and our 2015 book tour, can also be found at the book’s dedicated 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 L.A. 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

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | 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 | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | 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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