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Pre-trial Scientology special: The new episode of Up the Bridge, for everyone!

In 2013 we began a very popular series at the Underground Bunker which lasted more than a year.

We called it “Up the Bridge,” and with Claire Headley’s help we explained something about every step on Scientology’s “Bridge to Total Freedom,” from beginning to end, and tallying up the costs along the way.

We wanted to give non-Scientologists some sense of what it was like to go all the way from beginner to Operating Thetan, and learn something about what Scientologists actually do all day as they’re making their way to that goal.

Recently we decided to try that again, but in a special podcast series for our subscribers, and with the help of our technical expert, former Hollywood Celebrity Centre officer and Sea Org veteran Sunny Pereira.


For several weeks now Sunny has been taking us on a pretty strange and entertaining journey through what it’s like to go through Scientology courses and auditing.

And now, with everything about to change as we head back to LA for the Danny Masterson retrial, we thought we’d let the rest of you get a listen to what an episode with Sunny has been like. So, for this week, we’re making the new installment available to everyone.

As you’ll see, we’re now up to Grade One on the Bridge, and things are only getting stranger!

Listen to the podcast here.


Technology Cocktail

“Connectedness is the basic process on ASSOCIATION of Theta with Mest. All forms and kinds of association, including being caught in traps, are prone to become identifications as in Dianetics. Connectedness puts the thetan at cause in making the Mest (or people when run outside) connect with him.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1957



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 as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.



THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?

[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH

— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see

[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— The first Danny Masterson trial and beyond

[18] Trial special with Chris Shelton [19] Trial week one [20] Marc Headley on the spy in the hallway [21] Trial week two [22] Trial week three [23] Trial week four [24] Leah Remini on LAPD Corruption [25] Mike Rinder 2022 Thanksgiving Special [26] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part One [27] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part Two [28] Claire Headley on the trial [29] Tory Christman [30] Bruce Hines on spying [31] Karen de la Carriere [32] Ron Miscavige on Shelly Miscavige [33] Karen de la Carriere on the L’s [34] Mark Bunker on Miscavige hiding [35] Mark Plummer [36] Mark Ebner [37] Karen Pressley [38] Steve Cannane [39] Fredrick Brennan [40] Clarissa Adams [41] Louise Shekter [42] John Sweeney


Source Code

“We are processing as close to definitions as possible. This has always been true in the Advanced Course — in these Clinical Courses. We process as close to definitions as possible. And when we’re right on the button with definitions, we see that space is a viewpoint of dimension, we of course have the basic of any universe. Of any actually created universe, the basic is that there must be somebody there to be the central viewpoint of it. Well, whose postulates would hold in that universe? Of course, the person whose viewpoint it was. That person’s viewpoint would hold. Therefore, we have the god concept. Now, the other things that are manifest here that aren’t mentioned on this data sheet — down here we see the Know to Sex Scale is something that you could use for diagnosis and hasn’t been gone into here very thoroughly. Now, here we have know, look, emote, effort, think, symbols, eating and sex.” — L. Ron Hubbard, April 13, 1954


Avast, Ye Mateys


“GOOD NEWS: Indications are that we will have won the war with Smersh in a year or two. They have lost further ‘prominent leaders.’ We have directly traced and documented their origin to East Germany and have found the crimes they sought to hide. Lesser lights in their ranks are turning to us for guidance. Their network is collapsing under the various stresses to which they have been subjected. They may fight more skirmishes through men they control in govts but it is obvious we will win the war.” — The Commodore, April 13, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“One of the ideas that Hubbard most frequently said of exteriorization is quite stupid: that a great part of people can exteriorize easily and the rest can easily be audited into it. False. Quite false! I’ve had experiences where I almost come out of my body. Or, once, I had an experience when I woke up floating above my body! But it was startling. And scary. It feels like you’re going to die. This fear is quite common among people. And Hubbard barely mentions it. I also can say I’ve had other experiences where I am expanded, more brilliant, disconnected from case or exteriorized from space or time. Those experiences are also quite recognizable. But they are not ‘exteriorization’ as defined by Scientology. Perhaps the road to exteriorization is to audit out the fear involved, all the bad things going exterior can be associated with, and case linked to it in general. To audit it directly, instead of expecting that general auditing will (for real) get you exterior.”


Past is Prologue

1998: The Washington Post published an article, which included discussion of comedian Jerry Seinfeld’s involvement in Scientology. “Seinfeld, while he says he is not a member of the Church of Scientology, took pains during an interview to defend the controversial sect. He said he had taken Scientology courses years earlier and found them to be very ‘pragmatic’ and helpful. He said he was ‘interested in Eastern religions generally,’ apparently thinking Scientology to be one of them. ‘I think the stuff I learned there really did help me a lot,’ he said. When reminded then that Time magazine had just run a cover story about Scientology that included charges it was a ‘thriving cult of greed and power’ and a ‘ruthless global scam,’ Seinfeld scowled and dismissed the article as ‘poor journalism.'”


Random Howdy

“Have you ever destroyed a planet with a jim-dandy whizzer?”



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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Retrial scheduled, jury selection begins March 29. Next pretrial hearing: Feb 16.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Next pretrial hearing Feb 13.
Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next status conference Feb 13.

Civil litigation:
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Complaint filed April 28 in Tampa federal court, Scientology moving to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs filed amended complaint on August 2. Hearing November 17 to argue the arbitration motions, awaiting ruling.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Selection of arbitrators underway. Next court hearing: March 15, 2023.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Stay in place at least through February 7.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: New trial ordered after appeals court overturned prior 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.



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 origin of Scientology’s notorious prison program: Hana Whitfield’s eyewitness account
[TWO years ago] Scientology chiro Jay Spina sentenced to 9 years for case that made judge’s ‘blood boil’
[THREE years ago] Scientology really reaching in latest attempt to keep Philly lawyers out of Masterson lawsuit
[FOUR years ago] Scientology and evolution: The otherwordly experience of reading ‘A History of Man’
[FIVE years ago] Returning to Clearwater with a Miscavige cutout and memories of the Lisa McPherson Trust
[SIX years ago] Scientology’s celebrities to the rescue! John Travolta shills while Jenna Elfman melts down
[SEVEN years ago] Class action lawsuit against Scientology’s drug rehabs refiled with new plaintiffs
[EIGHT years ago] If you want the IRS to re-examine Scientology’s tax exempt status, it’s time to get real
[NINE years ago] Sunday Funnies: The Writers of the Future and more success stories!
[TEN years ago] The Saga of David Mayo: Scientology’s Banished Tech Wizard
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology Admits Connection to Slimy Anonymous Attack Websites


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 2,998 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,503 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,053 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,043 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,934 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,238 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,109 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,214 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,691 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,003 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,569 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,488 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,656 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,237 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,498 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,534 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,250 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,814 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,129 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,304 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,855 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,986 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,324 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,179 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,298 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,654 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,957 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,063 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,461 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,337 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,920 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,415 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,669 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,778 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on April 13, 2023 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, 1995-2022 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2022), 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


Tony Ortega at Rolling Stone


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