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We wondered what was in that new Scientology app: Now we know because we got in!

Last week, we told you that we’d heard from a couple of our tipsters that Scientology is putting pressure on members to download a new app for their smartphones that will keep them up on what’s happening at the church’s private cruise ship, the Freewinds.

The marketing of this app had us salivating, but darnit, downloading a Scientology app to our phone was not something we’d contemplate even while wearing a full body condom. Just not going to happen.

And anyway, you can’t get into the thing without a valid IAS number. (The International Association of Scientologists is Scientology’s membership organization, and leader David Miscavige’s litigation slush fund.)

After our story, we heard from a number of our readers who volunteered to risk downloading whatever infectious agents this thing might come with, and we urged caution. At least two of them, however, found out that their “lifetime” IAS memberships have been cancelled since they left the church.


Well, that was probably for the best. We really didn’t think they should be touching that thing with a ten foot pole.

But then, one of our readers managed to get into the app (and the less details we know on that the better, we figure).


Our tipster was kind enough to bring out some screenshots of what we’d said we were most looking forward to: OT 8 success stories!

Marc Headley estimated that it costs a Scientologist anywhere between half a million and two million dollars to reach Operating Thetan Level Eight, the highest auditing level on the “Bridge to Total Freedom.” OT 8 can only be completed on the ship, which is the main reason Scientology keeps this old bucket of bolts in service.

The most delicious part about “New” OT8 is that it turned out to be L. Ron Hubbard’s ultimate prank on his followers. (“Original” OT 8 was only delivered on the ship for a few months in 1988, and we think we’ve provided evidence that it was authentic, despite the denials by the church. It was such a disaster it was quickly replaced by New OT 8.)

What do you learn on New OT 8? You discover the cruel truth that you’ve spent the past ten to twenty years in Scientology wasting your time. It turns out that the “memories” you’ve been recovering on the E-meter of past lives spanning trillions of years are actually those of the body thetans you’ve spent decades chasing away, and now, Hubbard tells you, you know finally who you aren’t.

Surprise! After all this time, now that you’re OT 8, you can start back at the beginning! It’s a devastating prank. And year after year, Scientologists spend millions to experience it.

And after all of that time and money, a newly minted Scientology OT 8 has only one choice: Sing the praises of OT 8, and pretend that it was the greatest thing ever.

Let’s take a look at the success stories that our reader found on the new Freewinds app!



Shining For All Eternity

The world may be spinning under a dark cloud, but for those who soar to the heights of New OT VIII, each day is luminous.

Lindsey Schnell grew up in a family of Scientologists, and when she was about 12, she remembers seeing New OT VIII on the Grade Chart. Although she wasn’t sure what that meant, she says, “I knew I had to get there one day.” Over the years, Lindsey had met and admired many New OT VIIIs, and when she came aboard, she wondered, “How is it possible that I’m going to become one of those unstoppable, shining New OT VIIIs?” She soon found out. As truth was revealed, Lindsey recognized in herself those qualities that she found so admirable in other New OT VIIIs. “I had dreamed about being the person I now am. I can trust my decisions, my actions and my goals. I can trust myself. Now I am free of invalidation, free of the darkness.”


For Jaimee Trio, the light began to shine when she was auditing on Solo NOTs, and the darkness that had long cast its shadow over her life went away. “I really had no concept of how it could be better or what LRH could have in store for me on New OT VIII.” As soon as she entered the New OT VIII Course Room she was amazed by what she discovered. “Just reading the materials brought me to tears. And auditing on New OT VIII, I became my own stable datum — all confusion just disappeared.”


When he attested to New OT VIII, Robert Pace felt eternal gratitude for all those who had supported his life-changing journey, which began one day when a friend told him about something called Scientology. “I somehow knew that I would never be the same.” Indeed. Robert went from a life of addiction to a life dedicated to helping others with LRH Tech. And on New OT VIII he discovered “a clarity of thought and an ability to focus in ways that I am in awe of. It’s glorious.”


As Chi-Hen Douglas Hsu opened the doors to the New OT VIII Course Room, he was expecting to be bathed in a glorious light. Then he saw the materials and realized, “The data from New OT VIII is the light.” And from that point on, the revelations on this vary powerful level just kept on coming. One day after session, he recalls, “I suddenly reached the state of Tone 40 — Serenity of Beingness.” For Douglas, the path to serenity started years earlier on the Freewinds. “That trip truly awakened me as a thetan.” Now he’s reached New OT VIII, he says, “Everything Ron told me has become my reality.



Isabelle Fages also rediscovered herself. “I found my truth. Now I know who I am as a thetan, what I want and what I can do.” Her route to New OT VIII started by accident, literally, 10 years ago, when she and the man who wouuld become her husband — a Scientologist — were vacationing in Venice and she twisted her ankle. He gave her an assist and the pain disappeared. That prompted Isabelle to find out more about Scientology. Back home in France, she started on the Bridge and kept on going. Now having reached the heights of New OT VIII, she says, “I feel so serene and light now.”


As personal as New OT VIII is, that sense of serenity is universal. As the light shines and truth is revealed, all confusion disappears, says Chip Payson. “I feel stable like never before.” The starting point of his spiritual journey can be traced back to the deck of the USS Talbot, where he overheard a sailor trying to explain the OT Levels to someone. A year later, that same sailor invited Chip to the Boston Mission, and he has since moved up both sides of the Bridge. As a former sailor, Chip is especially effusive about the Freewinds and its crew. “In the state where I grew up, they have a slogan, ‘Maine. The Way Life Should Be.’ Well, the Freewinds is The Way Life Really Should Be.”


A trip to the Freewinds can have ripple effects that reach beyond the lives of the passengers. When Chun-Hsiu Kevin Wu was nine years old, his mother came aboard for a convention. That trip set into motion the opening of a mission in Taipei Taiwan. As Kevin says, “If she hadn’t come to the Ship, I would not be a New OT VIII today.” Now that he is, Kevin says, “I will do everything possible to get more people onto this level.”


Leticia Levy Behar, a Class V Auditor from Mexico, is also dedicated to helping others on the route to freedom. She likened her own journey up the Bridge to a kind of transformation out of darkness to a state of clarity shines through. “New OT VIII was like a beautiful diamond, crystal clear and shimmering, but now as a New OT VIII, I glow from within, and the sparkle is pure theta.” Leticia is a shining light, beckoning others to follow her to New OT VIII. “Everyone needs to do this. Together, we can create a stronger force toward a better world.”


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Source Code

“Had the most fiendish idea the other day. I’m going to write a science fiction story (I still do, you know). I got a wonderful idea of writing about a government scientist who goes mad, you see, and the security is so terrific that nobody can find out what he’s doing, see? Not even his own boss, because the security is so terrific, you know? And when he orders materials he can’t tell anybody in the materiel department what it’s for because, of course, it’s so secret. You see, his security is very great. And he goes ahead and he builds up this thing which makes space solid. See, space becomes totally solid. See? And then puts it over the light lines to all the government offices everywhere. And of course, all the space in all government offices, complete with personnel, gets totally solid. And the last person that’s left is J. Edgar Spoofer. And he tries to explain it to this guy, that this guy doesn’t have the right to go ahead and do this in any direction and that he’s going to arrest him. But the guy tells J. Edgar Spoofer, ‘But look, you’re supposed to safeguard security in the government. And it says right here that my work is under total security and all actions I perform are under total security, so therefore, you’re violating your own order.’ So J. Edgar Spoofer steps back and lets the entirety of the Department of Justice and his office get totally solid. And everybody lived happily ever after.” — L. Ron Hubbard, January 30, 1957


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Celebrity Center doing very well. GI Affluence Trend since last SEPT! How do you like that! Hats off and a highly commended to Diana H., Yvonne Gillham and all the crew! Asho moving out in front with a high trend GI! Ira Chaleff and our Asho crew and USGO doing very well and USLO getting in there too! Very nice work and good teamwork by US offices! Asho Fnd not doing too badly but needs its own C/O. And good old AOLA still soaring into its Affluence Trend and all but Booksales normal or Affluence or Power GDSes, meaning its a near clean sweep of rising GDSes! It will be a $100,000 GI unless it overloads. The place must be simply bulging the walls. Fred Hare and our AOLA crew have recently been highly commended several times and are again. They need all the support they can get. I think Pac Plan should be revised to get Alex and Dave out there to give Fred a hand without changing anything they’ve got going but put in the Prod Org System. Wonderful to see what our people are doing and what they can do. This and all the good case gains aboard and in the field have me all cheered up!” — The Commodore, January 30, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“LRH might have been part of Brit agendas, but his agenda sided with the white South Africans for the benefit of the blacks. His tape predicted and explained what is happening and is the key for correction not only on South Africa but also in the Middle East.”



Past is Prologue

2001: A motion by the prosecutors in the case against Keith Henson for making terroristic threats was posted to a.r.s this week, in which they are attempting to suppress any evidence about the purpose of Keith’s protests, or any information about Scientology. “The People of the State of California hereby move pursuant to California Evidence Code 352 to preclude defendant from introducing evidence of or concerning three accidental deaths at or near property belonging to a Church of Scientology. The People expect that defendant will attempt to introduce evidence of these deaths and the Church of Scientology’s ‘involvement’ in them, to either justify his criminal acts or to prejudice the jury against the complaining witnesses and their employer.”


Random Howdy

“If any kid ever needed a hickory switch it was L Ron Hubbard.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for February 8. Trial scheduled for August 29.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Last hearing was on January 18, referred to grand jury.
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 March 25 in Los Angeles

David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for February 11.
Joseph ‘Ben’ Barton, Medicare fraud: Pleaded guilty, awaiting sentencing.
Yanti Mike Greene, Scientology private eye accused of contempt of court: Next hearing February 15.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Eleventh Circuit affirmed ruling granting Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Garcias considering next move.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ US Supreme Court denied Valerie’s petition Oct 4.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Scientology has said it will file an anti-SLAPP motion.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for June 28.
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.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



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] Scientology in Russia, a series by historian Chris Owen, part 3: The current crackdown
[THREE years ago] Scientology targets Disney with anti-‘Aftermath’ rally, attendees number in the tens
[FOUR years ago] A private eye comes clean: ‘Scientology is a disgrace to the world’
[FIVE years ago] Putting back a family ripped apart by Scientology can be easier said than done
[SIX years ago] L. Ron Hubbard’s magic chalk, and other Scientology miracles at the ’07 Birthday Event
[SEVEN years ago] Another Secret Lives leak: L. Ron Hubbard enjoyed humiliating people under hypnosis
[EIGHT years ago] Jefferson Hawkins finishes off our series on Scientology ethics with a reprieve
[NINE years ago] Scientology’s Atlanta Drug Rehab Crumbling: Executive Director Mary Rieser Out
[TEN years ago] Death of a Scientologist: Why Annie Broeker, Famous in the Church, Had to Die in Secret


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 2,560 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,065 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,585 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,605 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,496 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,803 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,671 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,445 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,776 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,249 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,565 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,131 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,050 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,218 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,799 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,060 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,096 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,811 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,336 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 691 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,866 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,417 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,566 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,886 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,741 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,860 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,216 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,519 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,625 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,023 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,899 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,482 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,977 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,231 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,340 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 30, 2022 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, 1995-2021 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2021), 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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