This is the start of my story - it'll cover the thirty-odd (and they were thirty ODD) years of my involvment with the Co$. Hope you like the first installment. Introduction I found the diary of Albert Speer in the local library and began to read it. He was Hitler’s architect and had a close personal relationship with one of the Twentieth Century’s greatest monsters. Speer wrote the diary during the twenty years he spent in prison for war crimes, written secretly on toilet paper and smuggled out of the jail he was kept in. It was the story of a man with dreams of turning his country into something beautiful by creating the world’s most spectacular urban landscapes full of gardens, lakes, forests, beautiful buildings and sculptures, long wide avenues and so on and who got subverted into being a part of something indescribably evil and then who began to see just how misled he’d been and how wrong his actions were. He wasn’t a bad man, but he had done some very bad things that he slowly began to take some responsibility for. He was the only Nazi at the War Crimes trials who admitted responsibility for his part in the horrors – he was genuinely remorseful. The parallels with what my life had been for the last 30 or so years were frightening. “Take a deep breath and feel dizzy with terror” type of frightening. “Not wanting to look but being unable to look away” type of frightening. Hence the title of this story. I’m not pointing out anyone here and saying “This is the devil – kill him.” It’s just a story of how I and a lot of people who became my friends became entangled in something I finally came to see was so wrong yet I thought it was so right. I first came in direct contact with Scientology in February 1979. Until October 2008, I’d been active as a Scientology staff member or worked in some of the Scientology “Social Betterment” activities such as Narconon. Scientology’s drug rehab program. I’ve trained extensively in the time, completing 80 courses on the subject. I’ve added a list of these at the end. There are a lot of good things about Scientology. I’ve tried to include these in my story so that you get a balanced view of the subject. As I said, I’m not interested in blaming anyone or anything for my time spent in Scientology. I just don’t want anyone else going through the sufferings and insanities that I encountered in my journey – the bad has far outweighed the good. I’ve just detailed as much as I can so that you can judge for yourself what to think. Especially in the later years, I have referred to my extensive diaries and other notes taken at the time to be as accurate as I can Before the Start I had a pretty good upbringing. Part of a large Christian family, youngest of six. Did well at school, above-average intelligence and found school generally easy and enjoyed learning. Enjoyed music and painting and writing and bird-watching and surfing and playing football and growing orchids and breeding frogs and fish. Found myself at a loose end with no goals in life as I got older and got into drugs at the age of 14 and life began to disintergrate. Drifted into university to fail at Biology and fell into a clerical job with the Post Office. More drugs and alcohol. Several attempts to get away from this and get me back but every time I’d just get back on. Could drink 24 cans of beer at a party and happily deny I was an alcoholic. Grew some of the strongest MJ anyone had ever smoked and partied on while those around me crashed in a stupor. Screwed my life up to the point I could barely hold down a labouring job. Flirted with heroin. Did plenty of other drugs like speed and LSD. Stopped surfing. Stopped painting. Stopped playing soccer. Despite all of this, thought it was all fine but knew deep down it wasn’t. Was heading further and further down the black hole and knew of no way to climb back out again, or even if there were a way to regain what I’d lost already and could see myself losing in the near future. Totally powerless over what I was doing and where I was heading. First Contact Had some vague beliefs in being a spiritual being and had long abandoned Christianity but had gotten interested in Buddhism and had read a bit about it and apathetically followed what I understood of its philosophy. That is, when I wasn’t too out of it from whatever cocktail of chemicals I was currently on. Was 22, doing LSD every fortnight and digging holes by the roadside for a living. Got out of the truck one day to catch a train home where I normally wouldn’t have gotten out of the truck and had a young guy with a clipboard ask me if I’d do a survey. I agreed, and soon found myself in a rather dilapidated building answering a “Personality Test” and then having a girl about my age called Kerri telling me all about myself, especially the non-complimentary bits. Rubbed my nose in my wasted life and told me I needed to change. She asked me if I was doing drugs at all and I said yeah, just finished a fridgeload of acid and still had some great homegrown MJ and no I hadn’t done heroin for a while – was trying to stay away from that and she interrupted my ramble and told me to “knock of the drugs and do the ‘auditing’ “ - I think I passed over $30 for some “co-audit” stuff and came back for the next few nights to see if this stuff worked. Everyone there seemed to be my age or not much older and there was a nice feel to the place. Found myself sitting with a stranger asking the same set of questions over and over and then the stranger suddenly brightened up and had some really cool thoughts about his life. He did the same thing for me and I thought it was pretty cool too. After four nights of this, I suddenly realized that I’d been hiding behind drugs and I didn’t need to – I could sort out my own problems without the help of anyone or anything. From that day to this, I’ve not touched heroin, hash, MJ, speed, acid or anything else. I kept smoking cigarettes for quite a few years and even had the odd drink until 15 years after this but my life had changed totally at that point and I felt amazing. I wanted to paint again, I wanted to write stories and songs again. Life became fun again without a chemical assist. I played soccer again, this time without being stoned. But I couldn’t tell my family and friends what had caused all this – it was Scientology and it was at best “weird.” I was taken to see some guy who told me I’d make a great “auditor” and I could buy this course and get another one for free if I gave him a few hundred dollars (I think it was about $600 at the time). I easily had that in my bank account so I paid up. I could do more of this auditing stuff on others and get them to do it on me. But this new auditing was even better than what I’d been doing! More powerful! Wow! Life was looking great!