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Report: Scientology cancels LRH Birthday, but still spreads quackery about coronavirus

Last night we received a report that Scientology had moved its holiest annual event — L. Ron Hubbard’s Birthday — from Friday to Saturday, and then cancelled it altogether.

If true, this is a huge deal for an organization that looks down its nose at the medical profession and “wog” (non-Scientologist) society. Acknowledging that the coronavirus is a true threat is acknowledging that all of the “Operating Thetans” who came from out of town to celebrate Hubbard’s 109th birthday could not stop a microbe, even with their highly-developed minds.

COVID-19 has reached the level of a global pandemic. Scientology has postponed its April “Writers of the Future” gala, and we’ve learned that the Scientology-operated school Clearwater Academy International has closed for at least a week and we assume Delphi Academy and Washburn Academy will as well. But even with these cancellations and closures, Scientologists are still spreading quackery and misinformation about the pandemic.



A booklet entitled “How to Keep Yourself and Others Well” is being distributed at orgs and missions. We haven’t been able to secure a copy, but from the cover it doesn’t appear to address the virus in particular. Among themselves Scientologists are promoting a mixture of good and bad advice for avoiding infection. The good advice is that hand washing and not touching your face are good practices. Left out is expert advice to avoid close contact with others, particularly in large groups.


Scientology is encouraging members to come in close contact with others. In general Scientology events are going on as scheduled. These include the LRH birthday celebrations, seminars, and graduation ceremonies. We hope to see a change soon in the U.S. as schools and businesses are now closing in greater numbers to avoid the spread of this very contagious disease. Canceling Scientology events is one way to protect the members from infection and prevent them from spreading the virus to others.


More bad advice comes from a few high profile public Scientologists, such as actress Kirstie Alley and Nation of Islam figure Rizza Islam. Islam is currently fighting charges of fraud in California and is promoting the use of Vitamin C to combat the symptoms of COVID-19. Vitamin C is not a cure for the virus. Islam is apparently unaware that Vitamin D does reduce the risk of contracting respiratory tract infections, both bacterial and viral. Islam only missed by one letter.



In times of uncertainty Scientologists like to fall back on the words of L. Ron Hubbard, in this case his 1971 policy on Vitamin C. “It helps cure colds” is the only advice in this policy. Hubbard’s nutritional theories were largely based on the writings of Adelle Davis. Davis wrote a series of popular nutrition books in the 1940s and 50s. She promoted cooking with fresh vegetables and whole grains, avoiding processed foods and the use of vitamin supplements. Hubbard praised her books Let’s Get Well, Let’s Eat Right To Keep Fit, Let’s Cook It Right, and Let’s Have Healthy Children.

[Let’s Eat Right to Keep Fit by Adelle Davis]

Davis is the inventor of Cal-Mag, which Hubbard adopted as a part of the Purification Rundown. The vile tasting concoction was first described in Let’s Eat Right to Keep Fit. Davis was among the first to call for healthy eating habits, but her theories on the effects of nutrition on war and crime are now generally discounted.


Social media is full of misinformation about the virus, which is then shared by Scientologists to their friends and neighbors, such as the fallacy that coconut oil can prevent infection. Facebook removed a post by Volunteer Minister Mirit Hendrickson about 5G cell phone towers being the cause of the virus. Such misinformation can be dangerous, such as Scientologist Freddie Ulan’s counter-productive call for people to come together in a large group to discuss the virus. Scientologists would do better to follow the advice of medical experts. Wash your hands, don’t touch your face, avoid large groups. That’s how to keep yourself safe from COVID-19

— Rod Keller



Source Code

“I said, ‘Go ahead and fly through the air,’ to a preclear once in a very careless moment. Preclear had said something about flying all to pieces, or going up in the air, and I said, ‘Well, go ahead and fly through the air.’ It was a bad thing for me to do, because I was disgusted. I was disgusted with the preclear, and I actually mirrored it. And the preclear took it as an auditing command and looked at me blankly and said, ‘How am I supposed to do that?’ Well, I could have said at that moment, ‘It’s a mis-command. I didn’t mean it.’ But I didn’t. I picked the preclear up and made him fly through the air. And I said, ‘See, you can do it.'” — L. Ron Hubbard, March 15, 1957


Overheard in the FreeZone

“If people have thought that a few thousand hours was a long time to spend on NOTs then they are in for a shock when they start OT 9. I am guessing 20,000 hours for people in good shape.”


Random Howdy

“I (and my parents) got my high school teacher fired for trying to use EST to teach us algebra. This was after he threw me out of the class for pointing out to him that EST was a cult and what he was doing was illegal and against school policy. This was like ’73 or ’74.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Jay Spina: Sentencing set for April 3 in White Plains
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members: Trial set for April 14 in Los Angeles

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Waiting for an appellate decision from the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Hearing on motion for reconsideration set for April 16
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology: April 22 (plaintiff attorneys pro hac vice), June (demurrers by Masterson and Scientology), June (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe’s attorneys have asked for discovery, March 19 depositions (Warren McShane, Lynn Farny), March 24 deposition (David Miscavige), April 20 hearing set (motion to compel arbitration)
Matt and Kathy Feschbach bankruptcy appeal: Oral arguments on March 11 in Jacksonville
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Complaint filed.


Start making your plans…

Head over to the convention website and meet us in St. Louis!


Scientology’s celebrities, ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and more!

[Catherine Bell, Chick Corea, and Nancy Cartwright]

We’ve been building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and we’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them. Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society!

Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in our weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Tom Cruise, John Travolta and some other rare celebs made Scientology event in Florida
[TWO years ago] What do you want to see in Leah Remini’s third season of ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’?
[THREE years ago] Leah Remini’s second season of ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ — what do you want to see in it?
[FOUR years ago] Regency Outdoor caves to Scientology, cancels ‘disconnection’ billboard
[FIVE years ago] ‘Going Clear’ subject Tom DeVocht gets a lesson in Scientology’s social media surveillance
[SIX years ago] Ryan Hamilton files two new suits against Scientology’s drug rehab network — in California
[SEVEN years ago] VIDEO: What Did You Lose in Scientology?
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology’s Future History! A Vision from 1969, and our Stats Roundup


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,878 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,382 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,902 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 922 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 813 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,120 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,988 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,762 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,536 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,882 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,448 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,367 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,535 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,116 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,377 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,415 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,128 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,653 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,180 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,743 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,883 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,203 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,058 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,178 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,533 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,836 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,942 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,344 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,216 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,799 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,294 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,548 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,657 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 15, 2020 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post 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 new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2019 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2019), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | 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 | Shelly Miscavige, 14 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 | 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

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


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