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Scientology’s Sea Org: Almost no pay and no sleep, but plenty of swearing and smoking!

Why do Sea Org members smoke and swear so much? I think the first time I remember hearing a swear word was when I was around four. By the age of five, I was swearing like a sailor. By 15 I was in the adult RPF, smoking nearly a pack a day of cigarettes.

Well, the Sea Org thinks it’s full of sailors, so could that be why all the swearing?

Within the Sea Org itself, swearing isn’t anything that I have ever seen a punishment doled out for. The same for smoking.

But going to meals on time? Leaving per your schedule to shower and sleep? Oh yeah, you can be punished for those.


We always had urgent things that had to be done that day, or that afternoon. So, it was very common to overhear, or be told, “You don’t go to dinner until you have a fucking person arrived into the Sea Org!” or “Nobody secures until the entire damn shithole of Central Files is brought up to Sea Org standards!” or “If you don’t resolve this right fucking now, I will send you to the RPF.”

We all felt the constant threat looming over us. Would we eat today? Would we be able to rest? If I only slept an hour last night, will I be allowed to make it up the next night (no)? Orgs set out leftover dinner at midnight for those who had been told they could not secure until something or other was done. Midrats (short for midnight rations) might have been the most visited meal in the Sea Org.

I guess swearing with anger tones gave an emphasis that you meant business. Seniors swearing and joking sometimes meant they were in a good mood and you might get your mealtime or even go to bed on time that night. It was rare, however.

Sometimes the swearing was misconstrued and ended up being something we all laugh about for years. For example, the story of Guillaume Lesevre, Executive Director Int. Those who know him know that he speaks English with a heavy French accent. He had been sent, in the middle of the night, to wake up Janet Light to tell her she was going to Australia. I believe it was somewhere around 2 AM or so. Waking up Sea Org members was common. Many were lucky to get full night of sleep. He banged on her door to wake her up. She came to the door sleepily and he told her to “get dressed, you are being sent to Australia,” to which she screamed “get the fuck out of here!” as an expression of surprise. Guillaume looked a little taken aback and said “no, I’m not going anywhere.”

This still cracks me up.

Have y’all ever heard about people who were on the RPF and had been given permission to leave? They were wanted back on post? And they refused to go? Why would that be? I’ll tell you what the most people told me, that had refused: because on the RPF they got regular sleep and meals. Some just wanted another month or so of rest before going back into the Sea Org. Yes, the work on the RPF is heavy and difficult, but for many, they preferred it to the torture they endured on posts. At least they got regular meals and sleep on the RPF.

I know this also raises the question of why these people didn’t leave. Well, this article isn’t about that, but we can note here a basic and simple answer: They were under heavy mind control in the Sea Org. Many were held back because of family, many truly believed that Scientology was the only answer and they felt they had to endure in order for everyone to be free. There are a lot of martyrs and would-be martyrs in the Sea Org.

So what about the smoking? Well, smoking isn’t forbidden anywhere in Scientology or the Sea Org. Locations for smoking are designated, of course. But Sea Org members could be denied food, denied sleep, but they were always allowed a cigarette break. Plus they killed our appetite and even perked us up with a little energy for a while. And there was no limit to the number of cig breaks you could have. For example, if you could not rest until Central Files was perfect, that could be many, many days being up. So those cigs were what kept you going. Those were the only brain breaks we had sometimes. And so we smoked. Liked chimneys.

Shortly after I left the Sea Org and realized that the scam of Scientology was much more than I originally thought, I took my last drag of my last cigarette and said “fuck that.” I was done with smoking and Scientology.

I have tried to quit swearing, and I think I have gotten much better at it than I had been. Like another ex famously said, “I only swear when I am talking about my Scientology past.”

I’d say that is because of what it brings out of us. Maybe the swearing helps us process what we have been through.

— Sunny Pereira



Technology Cocktail

“TR 8 is begun with student holding the ashtray which he manually makes execute the commands he gives. Under the heading of training stress is included the various ways and means of getting the student to achieve the goals of this training step. During the early part of this drill, say in the first coaching session, the student should be coached in the basic parts of the drill, one at a time. First, locate the space which includes himself and the ashtray but not more than that much. Second, have him locate the object in that space. Third, have him command the object in the loudest possible voice he can muster. This is called shouting. The coach’s patter would run something like this: ‘Locate the space.’ ‘Locate the object in that space.’ ‘Command it as loudly as you can.’ ‘Acknowledge it as loudly as you can.’ ‘Command it as loudly as you can.’ ‘Acknowledge it as loudly as you can.’ That would complete two cycles of action.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1967



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 [43] Tory Christman [44] Kate Bornstein [45] Christian Stolte [46] Mark Bunker [47] Jon Atack [48] Luke Y. Thompson [49] Mark Ebner [50] Bruce Hines [51] Spanky Taylor and Karen Pressley [51] Geoff and Robbie Levin [52] Sands Hall [53] Jonny Jacobsen [54] Sandy Holeman


Source Code

“We’re not in the business of whether people are crazy or not crazy. It’s just a method of calling dirty names anyway. The psychiatrists have no idea who’s crazy and who’s sane, and so forth. It’s just a matter of saying, ‘This fellow’s no good, and the US government wants to get him out of the way so he’s crazy.’ It’s just a matter of expediency. It says en masse, ‘We don’t agree with this particular person. He sees spiders on the ceiling and we don’t. Therefore he’s crazy.’ Has nothing to do with anything we are doing. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing. Just forget those classifications. We don’t care how potty this guy’s ideas of the physical universe are, you know, he just might have come down here from the Martian scout command or something like this, and they probably have very, very odd ideas, you see? The quality, the significance of the fellow’s ideas are no business of the auditor’s.” — L. Ron Hubbard, February 19, 1963


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Recently Flag was divided into 3 separate orgs. The Flag Bureaux (FB), the International Management Org was the first to be formed fully. It is the FOUNDING Org of the other two. It is doing very well and has stats rising in most areas and is heavily in the Mission business. Its colour flash is GREEN. The Flag Admin Org (FAO) is the Service Org. It trains, processes and handles Finance. It has the pattern of the standard 7 Division Organization. It is the ESTABLISHING ORG. The FAO flash color is RED. The Flag Ship Org is the ship itself. It consists of the usual yacht organization functions of Command, Deck, Stewards and Galley and Engine Room. The Ship Org Flash color is BLUE….To summarize the FB is running excellently, the tech and training of the FAO is tops. Finance FAO is going in well. By constant personal work and lots of help, I have these points in hand. Now the three numbered points above must occur and every effort, including very heavy Ethics, will be made to bring them into existence. Your cooperation will be appreciated.” — The Commodore, February 19, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“We need auditors well trained. When I went through the upper sections no one could get on the solo course without the Briefing Course first — that was (and is) the level of understanding it takes to make happy, successful OTs. Unfortunately that no longer seems an option either in the independent field or in the Church of Scientology. No Saint Hill Special Briefing Course offer there, I have heard. I offer it, but so far, no takers, not in 20 years. So how do we get OTs functioning and happy? It takes a lot of personal attention, helping the student solo auditor fill in his missing data, helping him through his levels.”



Past is Prologue

1996: Peter Lucey reported this week concerning the Jive Aces, a bar band preaching Scientology propaganda at gigs in the U.K. “I was in the ‘Bier Keller’, a bar under the Coppid Beach Hotel, Bracknell, UK on Friday, 16th Feb and the band booked was called the ‘Jive Aces’. [T]hey were ‘sponsored’ by Dianetics and there was much more ‘buy Dianetics’ adverts on the flyers than band info. Scn was not mentioned but the band’s booking address was Saint Hill Manor, East Grinstead. I talked to the leader – he described Jon Atack as a ‘wanker’ and said he was expelled from the CoS for drug dealing; my retort, that the ‘unconvicted drug dealing’ was a confession taken from his PC-folders after he left, fell on stony ground.”


Random Howdy

“Confiscating people’s passports is a classic Eastern European sex trade/slave tactic. It doesn’t get more obvious and sinister.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Found guilty on two counts on May 31, remanded to custody. Sentenced to 30 years to life on Sep 7.
‘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 January 29, 2024.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.


Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, motion to strike/anti-SLAPP motions by Scientology to be heard January 9, 2024.
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Forced to arbitration. Plaintiffs allowed interlocutory appeal to Eleventh Circuit.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Discovery phase.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Scientology moves for religious arbitration.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Ordered to mediation.



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] Celebrity Sunday: John Travolta, Anne Archer, and ‘rising star’ Joy Villa
[TWO years ago] Valerie Haney asks court for reconsideration after Scientology defeat in Masterson case
[THREE years ago] Transcript: In the Danny Masterson lawsuit, Scientology continues to get its way
[FOUR years ago] California is going ‘Ideal,’ and Scientology is on fire about it
[FIVE years ago] Leah Remini accuses former Scientologists of sabotaging an episode of ‘Aftermath’
[SIX years ago] Atack: What David Mayo told me about L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology, and the upper levels
[SEVEN years ago] Disconnecting from the dead: Another employer accused of forcing Scientology is taken to court
[EIGHT years ago] DOX: A former L. Ron Hubbard business partner dishes on Scientology to the feds
[NINE years ago] HBO moves back ‘Going Clear’ to March 29 and TV’s most coveted spot: Sunday night
[TEN years ago] SCIENTOLOGY’S PRAYER: The Hail Mary petition to keep David Miscavige from being deposed
[ELEVEN years ago] SUPER POWER UPDATE: Scientology Has Even More Excuses Not to Open Its Boondoggle


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Tammy Synovec has not seen her daughter Julia in 2,815 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 3,310 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,825 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,375 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,365 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,246 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,550 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,421 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,973 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,314 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,881 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,800 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,968 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,549 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,810 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,846 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,562 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,126 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,441 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,616 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,167 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,298 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,636 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,491 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,610 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,966 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,269 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,375 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,773 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,649 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,214 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,727 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,981 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,090 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on February 19, 2024 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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