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Scientology’s mystery sandwich: A ‘church’ where deception is a sacrament

One of our readers forwarded an “FSM Newsletter” they received recently from the Church of Scientology. And reading it, we were reminded that Scientology is such a dishonest mess, we sometimes get inured to it.

Longtime Scientology watchers will not be surprised that “Field Staff Members” — essentially salespeople — are instructed to deceive and cajole new people into becoming members. But it still stuns us that something that calls itself a “church” would be so blatant about it.

The newsletter encourages FSMs, who bring in new people on commission, to rely on a 1978 policy letter written by founder L. Ron Hubbard. This policy, “Come-On Dissemination” has been public for years, but it doesn’t get the attention it really deserves.

This is Hubbard, known as “Source” in Scientology because everything he wrote or uttered is considered Scientology scripture, explaining how to trick someone into joining Scientology by holding back virtually everything about it and instead luring them in with a come-on that’s a “mystery sandwich.” Hubbard came up with this, he says, after discovering that if a recruiter explained any of Scientology’s actual processes — what it called the “tech” — a potential recruit would be too turned off to join…



A recent look at dissemination revealed the following data:

DISSEMINATION BY MEANS OF PURVEYING A LITTLE PIECE OR SEVERAL LITTLE PIECES OF TECH (to answer questions, show how a person’s problem could be handled, show how the mind works, etc.) ENDS THE CYCLE AND TERMINATES THE REACH.



A thetan is a mystery sandwich. If we tell him there is something to know and don’t tell him what it is we will zip people into Div 6 and on into the org. So in using come-on, one simply does the above. You either have or you create interest in your prospects — then you channel them along. Their own curiosity will pull them along the channel, providing you created the correct mystery in the first place.

You channel by indicating where and how to get the data — never just GIVE the data. And one can keep on doing this to a person — shuttle them along using mystery. Dept 17 services especially should be geared to this, one service ending in some mystery that only the next Div 6 (or better yet, Div 4) service will solve. One can also put this type of come-on promotion in books one sells so the person buying the book is put into mystery and doesn’t just end on a win by reading that one book alone.


Reach gets blunted or terminated once a person gets his question answered, the solution to his problem, etc. Purveying random and little pieces of tech to a prospect and the public at large does just this. This is end-off dissemination. Thus one should gear one’s dissemination to the come-on and keep the prospect’s appetite for knowledge and mystery well stimulated and channel the person right along so that he will and does become an actual Scientologist.

In our case, the curiosity restimulated eventually will be fully answered and to the person’s complete advantage. When he is given a mere scrap of information, he has been denied the full data, gains and technology which will be his if he attains the benefits of major services.


MYSTERY: the glue that sticks thetans to things. (Dianetics and Scientology Technical Dictionary)

MYSTERY SANDWICH: 1. the principle of mystery is, of course, this: the only way anybody gets stuck to anything is by a mystery sandwich. A person cannot be connected to his body, but he can have a mystery between him and his body which will connect him. You have to understand this thing about the mystery sandwich. It’s two pieces of bread, one of which represents the body and one of which represents the thetan, and the two pieces of bread are pulled together by a mystery. They are kept together by a volition to know the mystery. (PAB 66) 2. a thetan stuck to anything is, of course, just a mystery sandwich. Thetan, mystery, object-mystery sandwich. (SH Spec 48, 6108C31) (Dianetics and Scientology Technical Dictionary)

COME-ON: (noun) 1. something offered as an inducement. (Webster’s New World Dictionary) 2. something offered to attract or allure; enticement; inducement. (World Book Dictionary)



Imbue your prospects and the public at large with a thirst to find out. Mystery, not little scraps of data, will be found to be the biggest puller.

The newsletter contained success stories by FSMs who had used this strategy. For example, these experiences were submitted by Carmela Cywie, New OT 8, Super Power completion, Class V auditor…


[Carmela’s photo from the newsletter]

— The first person that I introduced to Scientology years ago is now auditing on Solo NOTs, and this is the best reward I could possibly have. He was a friend and had a ruin. One day he asked me “Do you think your Scientology can solve it?” And I replied “Yes, I really think so.” I was being very mild and was certain that any ruin could be resolved with the technology. He came in and resolved his ruin and much more! I am proud that I have been able to create a positive change in his life by being a Scientologist. Since then I have disseminated to other people and the technology I use is the “Come-on” dissemination!

— Regarding another person that I met, I simply said “I read an incredible book about human behavior” and I gave him an appointment at the Org and he came.

— I have used this technology with my children, who are both Scientologists and are going up the Bridge by simply saying “COME!”

Like we said, we know that jaded longtime Scientology watchers will find this old hat. But it really should be a devastating indictment of this totalitarian organization. Here the founder is on record saying that he realized that Scientology could never sell itself on what it actually does, that potential recruits would turn away if any of its actual “tech” was expained to them.

Instead, Hubbard encouraged his salespeople to lure people in by holding back information about Scientology, and by enticing them with mysterious statements about Scientology’s power.

And the recent FSM newsletter shows that this approach is still being endorsed by the church today, in 2020, and that it forms the basis of recruiting, even in an age when a few clicks on a keyboard can bring up a mountain of information about Scientology’s actual processes.

It’s damning stuff. But not damning enough, apparently, for governments to do anything about this deceptive organization.



Source Code

“The nitty-gritty of the West German raid on the dollar is to be found in a proposal to form a World Central Bank that ‘adjusts all the worlds currency.’ This is about the most cold-blooded effort at world domination I’ve ever seen. A country that surrenders its currency surrenders its sovereignty. It was Nazi banking expertise that saved the Third Reich and opened the door to WW II. What we DON’T need is Nazi control of all nations. Along with that goes psychiatric control, gas chambers, obliterated ‘impure’ minority groups. Heil Hitler. For the sake of German Scientologists of which there are now many, and the rest of the world, the new Nazi resurgence must end before it winds up in another blood bath.” — L. Ron Hubbard, May 8, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Suggestion: don’t go into the light after death. it’s probably better to create your own if you want. talk about a mismash of flows, data, beingness and identities. Further suggestion: maintain your own identity at all times. if you want to go into the light after death, at least maintain your own beingness. maintaining a position in space is vital to power and sanity as a thetan.”


Random Howdy

“They sent me a notice for jury duty last year and I scrawled across it ‘I am a Scientologist and we do not recognize your authority in this sector of the galaxy.’ They sent me a notice back about having to get a letter from my clergyman and to bring it down to the court. I threw that in the garbage.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Jay Spina: Sentencing was set for April 3 in White Plains
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members: Trial set for October 7 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 August 11
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: July 8 (plaintiff attorneys pro hac vice), August 31-Sept 1 (CSI/RTC demurrer against Riales, Masterson demurrer), Oct 7-19 (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe’s attorneys have asked for discovery, depositions (Warren McShane, Lynn Farny), amended complaint filed
Matt and Kathy Feschbach bankruptcy appeal: Oral arguments were heard on March 11 in Jacksonville
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Amended complaint filed.


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

[Kelly Preston, Jason Dohring, and Anne Archer]

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] New York Scientologist chiropractor pleads guilty in $80 million Medicare scam
[TWO years ago] Witness to Dianetics: For the first time, the letters of key Hubbard ally Donald H. Rogers
[THREE years ago] DRONE FLYOVER: Scientology’s Int Base and its hilltop camouflaged ‘Eagle’s Nest’
[FOUR years ago] Giant certificates and other weirdness from Scientology in our weekly online review
[FIVE years ago] A voice from inside the Church of Scientology: Yes, the ‘Survival Rundown’ drives you insane
[TWELVE years ago] Scientology Spokesman Gives Non-Answers on CNN


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 1,931 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,435 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,955 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 975 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 866 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,173 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,041 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,815 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,589 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,935 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,501 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,420 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,588 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,169 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,430 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,468 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,181 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,706 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,236 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,796 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,936 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,256 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,111 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,231 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,586 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,889 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,995 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,397 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,269 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,852 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,347 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,601 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,710 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 7, 2020 at 07:00

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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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