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Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard’s cosmos: An ancient battlefield shot through with ‘psychs’

Some of you know that your proprietor is a stargazer and telescope nerd. And besides our personal journeys through the night sky, we’ve also dabbled in some astronomy journalism. Working on a piece we wrote in 1997 about the author of an amazing guidebook to the heavens, Robert Burnham Jr., remains one of our most treasured experiences.

Besides our itinerant tinkering with equipment and leisurely poring through star charts, we were also recently going through some old files when we ran across a draft of a piece we wrote about, get this, Scientology and astronomy.

One of our old friends in the astronomy community had said something about Scientology’s outlook on the cosmos, and it motivated us to write a brief sketch about life, the universe, and everything from the perspective of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.

We never did anything with the draft, but we thought it might be fun to publish here at the Bunker. As always, we’re looking forward to your reactions.



Cosmologists today estimate that our universe is about 13.8 billion years old. That’s about three times as old as the Earth and a mind-bending length of time for the human brain to contemplate.

But it’s nothing compared to the age of the Scientology universe.

Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard (1911-1986) said that the universe was about four quadrillion years old (which is about 290,000 times older than 13.8 billion), and was created when “thetans” — massless, sizeless sentient beings — dreamed it up because they were bored in their own universe.

You and everyone else who ever lived on Earth are thetans, and Hubbard said that you have lived for 76 trillion years in a countless series of lifetimes that may have occurred in other parts of the galaxy. But we suffer from something called a “reactive mind” which prevents us from remembering our “Whole Track” of existence.

Hubbard said he was the first person in 50,000 years of civilization (for some reason he repeatedly cited that number, even though civilization is more like 6,000 years old) to discover the true nature of our minds and to discover the way to explore our Whole Tracks — through something he called Dianetics and then Scientology.

Before he kicked off the Scientology movement with the publication of his book Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health in 1950, Hubbard had been well-known as a writer for the pulps, and particularly for his stories of science fiction. But he largely gave up his fiction career in order to grow a following that accepted his claims that he was in fact a scientist who had discovered the true secrets of the universe. One of the great appeals of the early movement was that Hubbard offered to help you go back in time to discover what you had been doing in those countless past lives.

Hubbard himself, for example, managed to recall that he was a race-car driver on Earth some 40,000 years ago, during an earlier civilization. He recounted a story about a racetrack booby-trapped with atomic bombs that had special super-glass for spectators to watch as some drivers were vaporized in explosions. He kept setting the course record over hundreds of years, not realizing that he was beating his own records from past lifetimes.


[L. Ron Hubbard]

Hubbard said that he visited Heaven twice, 43 trillion and 42 trillion years ago. The first time, he said it was a nicely manicured place that reminded him of the old Busch Gardens in Pasadena (before the theme park version), but it was trashed when he went back the second time.

Most famously, Hubbard claimed that he nearly lost his life going through the Wall of Fire to recall an incident that happened 75 million years ago. In his own handwriting, he recounted that at that time, there was a 76-planet confederation run by a supreme ruler named Xenu. Faced with an overpopulation problem, Xenu tricked people by calling them in for tax audits, then paralyzed them and froze them in an alcohol-glycol mixture, and had billions of them flown in spaceships that resembled DC8s to the planet Teegeeack, which today we call Earth. He packed them around volcanoes in the Atlantic and Pacific, then hit the volcanoes with hydrogen bombs to vaporize his prisoners. But he captured their released thetans with electronic traps and then subjected those thetans to 36 days of 3D movies that implanted in their memories a lot of stuff, including all of the major world religions. (In other words, Hubbard was saying that Christianity, Judaism, Islam and the rest are false information implanted in us by an alien overlord.) At that point Xenu set them loose on Earth, and they took up residence in the animals that were around at the time, including clams. When humans evolved millions of years later, those thetans took up residence in us. Each of us, Hubbard said, are carrying around hundreds or thousands of these excess “body thetans,” who are still angry about being tricked and bombed, and Scientologists spend years and years removing these invisible spirits with the use of a machine they call an “E-meter,” which measures skin galvanism. While they’re doing this, they’re paying Scientology hundreds of dollars an hour.

As famous as that incident is (thanks to a 2005 episode of South Park), something that happened 75 million years ago is just a blip in the long time represented by the Whole Track. Hubbard repeatedly emphasized how important it was to go much, much further back in time to discover the things that made us who we are today. Evil psychiatrists, for example, from the planet Farsec booby-trapped our brains with implants that are hundreds and thousands of trillions of years old, and it’s important for Scientologists to hunt down those implants and defuse them.


Hubbard himself claimed to have traveled so far back in time with his own “auditing” on the E-meter, he had reached an incident that occurred so long ago, to express it in years he used a number that had 347 digits. The number he wrote down was 24 billion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion years.


[Pat Broeker, at the Hubbard death announcement in 1986, showing the 347-digit number Hubbard had written down, representing the farthest back in years he had managed to explore his “Whole Track.”]

More close to home, Hubbard claimed that space is actually warm, which he discovered while traipsing through the Van Allen Belt, and he said that astronomers are also wrong about Venus being uninhabited — the last time he was there, he was nearly run over by a freight train, he said.

Other revelations about our solar system by Hubbard:

— Waves of “invader forces” have visited our system and some of them remain here, on Mars, Venus, and in certain places on the Earth, tormenting human beings. Hubbard made it clear that the Fifth Invader Force are not human beings themselves, but Scientologists will howl and call you ignorant if you say that there is any suggestion of “space aliens” anywhere in the tenets of Scientology. Not only does Hubbard make it clear that the Fifth Invader Force are not human, but he also refers to Snake Men and Cat People from other parts of the galaxy.

— Although thetans can leave their bodies and travel in space, Earth is a prison planet and thetans are prevented from leaving it. Hubbard theorized that a set of screens had been set up around the planet to keep us here. In a 1952 lecture, he suggested that the screens are camouflaged by the aurora borealis.

— Elsewhere in the galaxy, other traps have been set for thetans. One of them, Hubbard pointed out, is the Horsehead Nebula in the constellation of Orion.

As to Einstein’s theory that nothing can exceed the speed of light, from a 1953 lecture: “I hope that they don’t hear about this out in the outer planets there, because they’d have to drop those speedometers off. Because these boys going two or three times the speed of light there, as they just start to travel, would be embarrassed if they knew they couldn’t do that. And so somebody’d better inform them before they’re embarrassed by having this discovered about themselves.”

And one of the most important concepts about the laws of nature that Hubbard repeatedly came back to in his lectures was that basic realities like the law of gravity are really social constructs: Gravity exists because we have decided that it does. To illustrate this, Hubbard described an ancient space civilization he called “Arslycus” (pronounced arz-LIE-cuss), which was a city that floated in space until a slave who “polished the third row of bricks” suddenly came up with the concept of “mass,” which in turn caused the idea of gravity to come into existence, resulting in the sky-city abruptly crashing to the ground. Gravity has been holding people down ever since.

According to Hubbard when a person on Earth dies, we are whisked to either Venus or Mars where an invader force puts us through “implanting,” erasing our memories so that we forget who we were in our previous lives, and then sends us back down to earth to jump into a newborn baby and start a new life.

The goal of Scientology is not only to rid us of the angry, invisible body thetans, but also to erase those implants and the reactive mind so that we become not just thetans but Operating Thetans, with total “cause” over matter, energy, space and time. We will be able to leave our bodies at will and remain aware of our 57 senses (called “perceptics,” including not only sight and smell, etc., but also “the saline content of our cells” and “oiliness”). As Operating Thetans, we can then resist between-life implanting, and recall our entire Whole Tracks of existence as we live with godlike powers from lifetime to lifetime.

In one lecture, Hubbard talked about Operating Thetans having the power to destroy all life on a planet merely by touching it with a finger.

Of course, no Scientologist in the 71 years since Dianetics was published has demonstrated any of these abilities, and Scientology itself has been in steady decline for decades. But a hardcore membership remains, bolstered by the support of a few high-profile celebrities like Tom Cruise.


In some ways, it feels like the rest of the world, with the flat-earthers, QAnon, and chemtrail believers growing and growing, has finally caught up with Scientology.

Hubbard died in 1986 of a stroke at 74. But the membership was told that he had voluntarily left his healthy body to pursue further research in pure thetan form in another location, which they refer to as “Target Two.” They have never revealed which particular planet or star this might be.


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Source Code

“These memory recordings aren’t passed along from cell to cell. They could be, but they are not stored as electrical energy. You start examining this any way you want to and you will find that there isn’t an energy in the physical universe — at least which we know about — which has a small enough wavelength to store memory recordings. Oddly enough, this was a discovery I made in 1932 when I was in atomic and molecular physics at George Washington University. I made an exhaustive study of the matter. There aren’t wavelengths small enough; physical scientists would know that. The boys fooling around in medicine would not know it because they don’t know the laws of energy, and as a consequence they have postulated, as the best postulates which they can offer, that memories are stored in punched protein molecules. That is cute!” — L. Ron Hubbard, October 8, 1951


Avast, Ye Mateys

“The cholera shot knocked quite a handful down. They’re mostly well again. Those not trained in Scientology possibly don’t realize one has to decide to be ill before one does. One can also decide to be well. Those off duty on MO lines are also off allowances and bonuses. Doc Robinson is cleaning up a lot of lifetime cycles. She’s a whiz at it. She’s looking for volunteers for a health food diet just sent in by a former Ship’s Rep.” — The Commodore, October 8, 1970



Overheard in the FreeZone

“New Scientology tattoo I got!”



Past is Prologue

1998: Lawrence Wollersheim posted a report on the status of documents seized by Scientology during its raid on Bob Penny, a former Factnet director. “Scientology absolutely knew Bob and Factnet did not scan or create the HCOB volumes found on Bob Penny’s computer. Scientology knew and had exact copies of the unique HCOB volumes found on Bob Penny’s computer most likely years before Factnet was even in existence. Scientology and its attorneys knowing represented to the Denver federal court that Bob and Factnet did scan or create the unique HCOB volumes found on Bob Penny’s computer when they knew that was a lie and had in their possession the very same unique HCOB’s and additional knew all the time who really had created and distributed these unique HCOBs years earlier. According to the group of people who have just stepped forward a few days ago, these HCOB volumes were created or typed in the San Francisco area in about the 1986-1992 period. From Europe copies were sent and traded with David Mayo’s ACC groups for other Scientology materials that the ACC people had on computer. Copies were also distributed in Europe and at least one copy was sent to Australia. At least one of these copies was then sent to the US. This US copy was sent by one of the receiving US parties to Bob Penny anonymously in August/September 1993.”


Random Howdy

“Not all of us are rich enough to afford cable and some of us think it’s a wasteland.”



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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for November 10. Trial tentatively scheduled for February.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Pretrial conference October 7 in Los Angeles, waiting for new court date to be posted.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for November 19.
Joseph ‘Ben’ Barton, Medicare fraud: Pleaded guilty, awaiting sentencing.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30, 2020 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition to US Supreme Court submitted on May 26. Scientology responded on June 25.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court granted review on May 26 and asked the Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Oral arguments scheduled for November 2.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Dec 17: Feshbachs sign court judgment obliging them to pay entire $3.674 million tax debt, plus interest from Nov 19.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for June 28, 2022.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 23. Appeal hearing held Aug 23-27. Awaiting a ruling.



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links, including our four days in Los Angeles covering the preliminary hearing and its ruling, which has Danny facing trial and the potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison.


After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. 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 a weekly series. How many have you read?


[ONE year ago] The Top 25 People Enabling Scientology, No. 13: Google and other tech titans
[TWO years ago] Scientologists will face trial after judge cites ‘sophisticated fraud’ scheme
[THREE years ago] With Scientology TV premiering a new ‘season’ tonight, David Miscavige is having a moment
[FOUR years ago] Guelph quest: Scientology sets up temporary shop in Canadian town and faces stiff opposition
[FIVE years ago] Atack: The forgotten history of disproving Scientology’s status as a “religion”
[SIX years ago] For some reason, news sites are keeping quiet about who found Cat White’s body. So here he is.
[SEVEN years ago] EXCLUSIVE: Scientology didn’t want you to see this letter it sent to the San Francisco Chronicle
[EIGHT years ago] William S. Burroughs and Scientology: Setting the Record Straight
[NINE years ago] Your Thoughts on The Master: Who Was Freddie Quell?
[TEN years ago] Scientology Symposium: Commenters of the Week!
[ELEVEN years ago] Daniel Montalvo, 19, Leaves Scientology, Which Convinces LA Sheriff to Jail Him For It


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 2,447 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,952 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,472 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,492 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,383 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,690 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,558 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,332 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,662 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,136 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,452 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,018 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,937 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,105 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,686 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,947 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,984 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,698 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,223 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 578 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,753 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,304 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,453 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,773 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,628 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,747 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,103 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,406 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,512 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,910 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,786 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,369 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,864 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,118 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,227 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on October 8, 2021 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, 1995-2020 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2020), 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, 15 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


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


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