Polarity

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
So let's talk about polarity. I have some thoughts about it.

When I was in CofS, it was "we're perfect, no one else is, anytime we're criticized it's the other guy.", even when they went back on their own word (as they did often) and changed their own materials. This prompted me to flee in horror, possibly not soon enough, but I did so. And so did almost everyone here, since almost everyone here's an ex.

I still liked some elements of Scn after I left the cult. Since I'd already been posting to critical fora- which is what led me to leave the cult and to quesiton a lot of things- I remained on those critical fora. I was straightforward about how I felt. On some occasions, I ran into polarity again. "you're wrong. If you ever studied anything else you wouldn't be doing this. You're OSA, etc." I was amazed that here were adults who were either ex cult or knew others who were ex cult, who wanted to draw a line such as this. I didn't accept it. I never have accepted it.

Meanwhile, I was delving into FZ and at the same time restarting my studies in other philosophies and modes of thought. I met a lot of FZers, "Indies" and people who weren't into Scn at all. In every single category, for lack of a better word, I found a range of common sense, capability, wisdom and so on. I did see a lot of goal driven mindset in the former, though. There was a dream for which they were reaching. When I saw that attitude among Christians, Buddhists and others, It was different. It was calmer. Not so much of a "it's got to be this way", although they were still reaching for something. But I will also say that my FZ friends were, for all of that, more realistic and calmer about reaching for THEIR dream than were people I'd known in CofS about the "go OT" carrot. It was a lot less carrotty in the FZ, IMO. Perhaps more like a parsnip. I"m not trying to make fun of anyone. I employ levity sometimes to make a point and because that's how I roll, in general.)I could almost make a scale of the reaching for enlightenment and hopefulness I found among various people but I leave the scale making up to Hubbard. I'm neither pundit nor cult leader. Nor am I planning on setting up any courses to teach anyone.

I've seen some truly vicious infighting amongst FZers and some very impractical commentary. This has been commented upon a great deal as of late. I've seen people come to the conclusion that they're stupid or crazy. I would point out that we're all bozos on this bus, but I have a feeling that a potential comment might be "But, Fluffy, isn't the Scn/OT promise so very high flown, so very specific, and that ultimate wisdom is just about guaranteed?" Yes, that is the case. I really think most FZers are more practical about it being a matter of degree than others sometimes give them credit for, though. A lot of people are more low key about those spiritual goals in the FZ than in CofS. Note I say " a lot of people". That's because I have met some hidebound types in the FZ who weren't all that different from CofS members in that and other regards. Can we call that fanaticism? I'd say yes, or at least a very single minded attitude. THAT is also polarity.

The problem with polarity is that it doesn't make room for another point of view or another type of person or any variance.

"They're batshit crazy"
"People need to go OT and get rid of their bts. It didn't work so well in CofS because of DM."

Both are things said by people on each side of the coin, and both are untrue.
So is anyone in the FZ "batshit crazy"? Yes. There are some troubled people there. Ok, so is anyone gonna ask "where's your Scientology NOW?" Sure. And would that be a valid question? Yes, it would. But it isn't everyone. So if we just look at the problem and not intro polarity into it, we'll be better off.

And for the latter- are there fundie types in the FZ who think OTness is perfect, going to be the same for everyone as long as "tech is standard" and "ethics are in"? Yes. Is that wrong headed? Yes. And it's polarity.

I've met some dumbasses and kooks in the FZ. I've also met people who were wise and helpful. IMO, the reason people sometimes want to categorize them all as stupid or crazy is that the ology promises so much and so they set themselves up for criticism. Their very PR seems to belie the "matter of degree" theory that I'm forwarding here. So people see FZers fall short of the mark again and again. That doesn't make them stupid or crazy, though, it makes them human and maybe a bit naive in some cases.

A number of ex members are former FZers. Are we going to call them stupid or crazy? No. Of course someone may say "that's cuz they got OUT, Fluffy." Yes, well, if they were that stupid or crazy, they'd not have gotten out. They were just reaching for a dream. Same as when they were in CofS. That's why I've never liked seeing people tar all CofS Scientologists with the "crazy/stupid" brush since almost everyone here was once in CofS. I don't think we were stupid or crazy. Abused, lied to, naive, head in the sand- yes. Stupid? Well, some people some of the time. There're stupid people in every walk of life. Crazy ones, too. I think we've found that Scn does not fix everything as it says it does.

I was kind of feeling holier than thou about the polarity thing, but now that I am finishing up this post, I just don't feel that way. I think that highflown promises and generalities of how perfect is it set people up for this stuff. Make a generality about the State of OT- which will be demonstrably false every time- it's going to lead to generalities made by skeptics, detractors, critics and other bemused folks looking into it. Cuz they're going to say "here's this thing that's supposed to be ALWAYS true, yet it's got a big flaw in it. That makes that promise false. As in NEVER true. How can we not generalize?" Generalities beget generalities. I think that holding onto the specific promise of Scn as Scn and talking about OT just sets people up for being put into a little box. Put there by themselves. It's not so much that detractors are putting you into a box, they've found your box that you constructed and into which you set up housekeeping and then they kind of poked it a bit with their sneaker.

I know that ANY ology or ism is a matter of degree and that it's possible to spend years on any of those things and not get too far or sometimes even do rather well, but I've seen no homo novis.

I object to the generalization of all Free Zoners are this or that but in a rather gentle half hearted way. I think they set themselves up for it.

Here's a piece of advice I gave to someone (which I actually gave when I was still clinging to the Scn'ist label and branding, if you can believe that):
We'll call her Jane. She wanted to know what I thought about doing FZ. She'd flirted with Scn on her own but had a lot of concerns. She was and is a brilliant iconoclastic decent woman who is very aware of the doings of CofS and has read a lot of Scn criticism and of Scn itself.

I said "Don't be a Scientologist. Be a Jane-ologist".

I honestly believe the only way Scn will survive is piecemeal. Individual ideas and methods being absorbed by other people and ologies and isms. This means the Scn branding goes away in those cases. I've already BEEN seeing it. This might make some people sad, but hell, it's not perfect anyway, it doesn't live up to its promise and if there's something cool in it, fine, have fun. There's too much squabbling and factionalism among Free Zoners. I've met a couple on line who I find to be utterly distasteful and others who I liked fine, but no more than I'd like or respect a Christian who seemed to be doing ok and to have some nifty insights. But it's not going to survive as any voice of Scn. Nothing will. But that doesn't stop anyone from doing things that help them.

I think that there are quite a few Indies and FZers who don't think Scn is perfect or that it lives up to all its promises. They know it's a matter of degree. I think that not everyone on the other side of the coin wants to admit that, though, no matter how many times people say they feel this way. My theory is that it's the use of the brand name that gets in the way.

So my solution for my beloved FZ and indie friends - and for anyone else who's thinking WTF do I do (ideologically speaking) is be a
John-ologist or a Jane-ologist or a Emma-ologist. Only John can be a Johnologist. Only Ems can be an Emmaologist. We don't want no more steekin' cults, nobody here is trying to be a cult leader. Let's just be ourselves, do TRs and get auditing if we want or totally eschew that but let's just call ourselves just OURSELVES and drop the labels. I think that would lead to more harmony and it might free some minds.
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
Labels are effective in expressing a category and are used as "short hand".

For example, I am an embedded systems software engineer. It gives people some ideas without having to explain the whole thing in paragraphs and pages every time I would mention it.

Some people are genetic biologists. This is an effective "label" that describes it without having to explain the whole thing in paragraphs and pages everytime it's mentioned.

Some people are Roman Catholics. This is an effective "label" that describes it without having to explain the whole thing in paragraphs and pages everytime it's mentioned.

Labels are words. Most of them can be found in any dictionary.
 

Zinjifar

Silver Meritorious Sponsor
It's one thing when a person labels himself; it's something else when he insists on controlling how others perceive that label.

If Scientology has a bad perception, there are damn good reasons for it. Accurate too.

Zinj
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
It's one thing when a person labels himself; it's something else when he insists on controlling how others perceive that label.

If Scientology has a bad perception, there are damn good reasons for it. Accurate too.

Zinj

I suspect that Claire is objecting to improper labeling.
But we might then get into a discussion on "sophistry" or "equivocation" and what these mean.
 
It's one thing when a person labels himself; it's something else when he insists on controlling how others perceive that label.

If Scientology has a bad perception, there are damn good reasons for it. Accurate too.

Zinj

True. :yes:

And yes I do use Freezone Scientologist in describing my beliefs to others. Of course I also use Taoist, Buddhist, and occasionally Neo-Platonist.


Mark A. Baker
 

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
I suspect that Claire is objecting to improper labeling.

No. I've described my feelings on the matter in great detail. The post is about polarity and what people do to bring that upon themselves and why it occurs. If I was objecting to improper labelling, I would say that I was objecting to improper labelling. I'm quite straightforward in my commentary and I go into detail.

But we might then get into a discussion on "sophistry" or "equivocation" and what these mean..

There'd be no reason to do so, since neither are in evidence. Also, I'm the one who created this thread so I know exactly what I'm hoping to discuss here. I think my thesis is quite evident as I've described it with great detail and with great specificity. SO any discussion on sophistry or equivocation would perforce be, once again, a thread derail. I'd as lief discuss issues instead.
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
No. I've described my feelings on the matter in great detail. The post is about polarity and what people do to bring that upon themselves and why it occurs. If I was objecting to improper labelling, I would say that I was objecting to improper labelling. I'm quite straightforward in my commentary and I go into detail.



There'd be no reason to do so, since neither are in evidence. Also, I'm the one who created this thread so I know exactly what I'm hoping to discuss here. I think my thesis is quite evident as I've described it with great detail and with great specificity. SO any discussion on sophistry or equivocation would perforce be, once again, a thread derail. I'd as lief discuss issues instead.

You mentioned "You're OSA" and that would be improper labeling, whether you explicitly called it that or not... it's the same thing.
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
I think one would need to read the entirety of the post. Thus would context be conferred. I go into great detail.

Yes, I did read your whole post on this.
It looked to me that you are iffy, this way and that way.
You are very slippery on this topic.
As soon as someone tries to nail down what you mean you slide off into something else that can't be defined in any solid way.
 

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
I went into a lot of detail. I don't see things in black and white. Never did, never will. I've always had critic friends and FZ friends. I've never told any of them what to do. Remember, I'm the girl who came to ars (on her own) and found friends in the FZ and critic's communities while still caring very much about her CofS friends and about individual concepts.

I fucking resented it when, as a Catholic, I was told it was all or nothing. I fucking resented it when CofS pulled the same shit. And I sure as shit don't go along with it in the critic's/exe's scene.

If anyone finds that slippery, then go to a thread where you can confine your discussions with those who are sayiing the sorts of things you'd like them to say.
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
I went into a lot of detail. I don't see things in black and white. Never did, never will. I've always had critic friends and FZ friends. I've never told any of them what to do. Remember, I'm the girl who came to ars (on her own) and found friends in the FZ and critic's communities while still caring very much about her CofS friends and about individual concepts.

I fucking resented it when, as a Catholic, I was told it was all or nothing. I fucking resented it when CofS pulled the same shit. And I sure as shit don't go along with it in the critic's/exe's scene.

If anyone finds that slippery, then go to a thread where you can confine your discussions with those who are sayiing the sorts of things you'd like them to say.

When confronted with facts that Scientology (or any off-shoots) is a pseudo-science, indies and freezoners get offended. I understand this.
 

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
When confronted with facts that Scientology (any any off-shoots) is a pseudo-science, indies and freezoners get offended. I understand this.

Some surely do. However, that does not pertain to the commentary (of mine) that you quoted since I'm neither an indie, a FreeZoner nor do I "get offended" when "confronted" with such "facts". Else, I'd not have so many friends who are critics. Ask Pooks how I behaved at her parties wherein I was (as was the case at the time) the only Scn'ist there.
 

programmer_guy

True Ex-Scientologist
Some surely do. However, that does not pertain to the commentary (of mine) that you quoted since I'm neither an indie, a FreeZoner nor do I "get offended" when "confronted" with such "facts". Else, I'd not have so many friends who are critics. Ask Pooks how I behaved at her parties wherein I was (as was the case at the time) the only Scn'ist there.

My point was that you say that it doesn't matter. You say it's "this way and that way" whatever one wants to believe. I certainly wouldn't be in favor of passing any laws against the freezoners or indies or whatever BUT it certainly isn't scientifically valid in any way.
 

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
My point was that you say that it doesn't matter. You say it's "this way and that way" whatever one wants to believe. I certainly wouldn't be in favor of passing any laws against the freezoners or indies or whatever BUT it certainly isn't scientifically valid in any way.

I've not said it does not matter. If this stuff didn't matter, I'd not have changed my life around as I did, I'd not have the friends I've had and have, I'd not have left the cult, and I'd not have spilled my guts in public as I have.

I wasn't talking about whether or not something's valid, scientifically or otherwise. You are certainly welcome to your opinion on that. It's fine. But it's not what I was discussing.
 

OTBT

Patron Meritorious
"They're batshit crazy"
"People need to go OT and get rid of their bts. It didn't work so well in CofS because of DM."

My deliberately mocked-up valence on critics boards is frequently that of an "Operating Body Thetan", which is simply my version of an ex-scientologist.
.
 

Voltaire's Child

Fool on the Hill
Now, see, I kept wanting to pronounce your nick as "OT Bait". Sure glad you clued me in.

Anyway, cute post and nice to talk to you again.
 

Veda

Sponsor
True. :yes:

And yes I do use Freezone Scientologist in describing my beliefs to others. Of course I also use Taoist, Buddhist, and occasionally Neo-Platonist.


Mark A. Baker

You should have written 'Man's Spiritual History' articles for the CofS's 'Advance!' magazine. They went on about Taoism, Buddhism, and Neo-Platonism too - and each screed leading back to the Scientology Bridge, just like you.

The difference is that your "public" are Ex Scientologists and, sometimes, recently out of the CofS Scientologists who, in a state of some bewilderment, can be led by you, and other Zoner PR types, back onto the "Bridge" - but first let's chat about Taoism, etc.

Eh.
 

OTBT

Patron Meritorious
Now, see, I kept wanting to pronounce your nick as "OT Bait". Sure glad you clued me in.

Anyway, cute post and nice to talk to you again.

Heh, my nick is short for Operating Thetan Body Thetan, which is obviously a polarity. But Operating Body Thetan is probably a better description. Don't read too much into it. I was drinking, and joking and degrading when I created the OTBT sock on a lark. "OT Bait" is pretty humorous too, though. Similar to / Opposite of "Ethics Bait"?

Nice to chit chat again with you too, Claire, its been a while. You are one of the few indie scientologists that I haven't gotten too frustrated with over the years.

Personally, I despise LRH and the "tech". I've watched you over the years slowly ( v e r y . slowly ) start backing away from blind acceptance of the tech and becoming more questioning of it. I hope that trend continues.
 

VaD

Gold Meritorious Patron
So let's talk about polarity. I have some thoughts about it.

When I was in CofS, it was "we're perfect, no one else is, anytime we're criticized it's the other guy.", even when they went back on their own word (as they did often) and changed their own materials. This prompted me to flee in horror, possibly not soon enough, but I did so. And so did almost everyone here, since almost everyone here's an ex.

I still liked some elements of Scn after I left the cult. Since I'd already been posting to critical fora- which is what led me to leave the cult and to quesiton a lot of things- I remained on those critical fora. I was straightforward about how I felt. On some occasions, I ran into polarity again. "you're wrong. If you ever studied anything else you wouldn't be doing this. You're OSA, etc." I was amazed that here were adults who were either ex cult or knew others who were ex cult, who wanted to draw a line such as this. I didn't accept it. I never have accepted it.

Meanwhile, I was delving into FZ and at the same time restarting my studies in other philosophies and modes of thought. I met a lot of FZers, "Indies" and people who weren't into Scn at all. In every single category, for lack of a better word, I found a range of common sense, capability, wisdom and so on. I did see a lot of goal driven mindset in the former, though. There was a dream for which they were reaching. When I saw that attitude among Christians, Buddhists and others, It was different. It was calmer. Not so much of a "it's got to be this way", although they were still reaching for something. But I will also say that my FZ friends were, for all of that, more realistic and calmer about reaching for THEIR dream than were people I'd known in CofS about the "go OT" carrot. It was a lot less carrotty in the FZ, IMO. Perhaps more like a parsnip. I"m not trying to make fun of anyone. I employ levity sometimes to make a point and because that's how I roll, in general.)I could almost make a scale of the reaching for enlightenment and hopefulness I found among various people but I leave the scale making up to Hubbard. I'm neither pundit nor cult leader. Nor am I planning on setting up any courses to teach anyone.

I've seen some truly vicious infighting amongst FZers and some very impractical commentary. This has been commented upon a great deal as of late. I've seen people come to the conclusion that they're stupid or crazy. I would point out that we're all bozos on this bus, but I have a feeling that a potential comment might be "But, Fluffy, isn't the Scn/OT promise so very high flown, so very specific, and that ultimate wisdom is just about guaranteed?" Yes, that is the case. I really think most FZers are more practical about it being a matter of degree than others sometimes give them credit for, though. A lot of people are more low key about those spiritual goals in the FZ than in CofS. Note I say " a lot of people". That's because I have met some hidebound types in the FZ who weren't all that different from CofS members in that and other regards. Can we call that fanaticism? I'd say yes, or at least a very single minded attitude. THAT is also polarity.

The problem with polarity is that it doesn't make room for another point of view or another type of person or any variance.

"They're batshit crazy"
"People need to go OT and get rid of their bts. It didn't work so well in CofS because of DM."

Both are things said by people on each side of the coin, and both are untrue.
So is anyone in the FZ "batshit crazy"? Yes. There are some troubled people there. Ok, so is anyone gonna ask "where's your Scientology NOW?" Sure. And would that be a valid question? Yes, it would. But it isn't everyone. So if we just look at the problem and not intro polarity into it, we'll be better off.

And for the latter- are there fundie types in the FZ who think OTness is perfect, going to be the same for everyone as long as "tech is standard" and "ethics are in"? Yes. Is that wrong headed? Yes. And it's polarity.

I've met some dumbasses and kooks in the FZ. I've also met people who were wise and helpful. IMO, the reason people sometimes want to categorize them all as stupid or crazy is that the ology promises so much and so they set themselves up for criticism. Their very PR seems to belie the "matter of degree" theory that I'm forwarding here. So people see FZers fall short of the mark again and again. That doesn't make them stupid or crazy, though, it makes them human and maybe a bit naive in some cases.

A number of ex members are former FZers. Are we going to call them stupid or crazy? No. Of course someone may say "that's cuz they got OUT, Fluffy." Yes, well, if they were that stupid or crazy, they'd not have gotten out. They were just reaching for a dream. Same as when they were in CofS. That's why I've never liked seeing people tar all CofS Scientologists with the "crazy/stupid" brush since almost everyone here was once in CofS. I don't think we were stupid or crazy. Abused, lied to, naive, head in the sand- yes. Stupid? Well, some people some of the time. There're stupid people in every walk of life. Crazy ones, too. I think we've found that Scn does not fix everything as it says it does.

I was kind of feeling holier than thou about the polarity thing, but now that I am finishing up this post, I just don't feel that way. I think that highflown promises and generalities of how perfect is it set people up for this stuff. Make a generality about the State of OT- which will be demonstrably false every time- it's going to lead to generalities made by skeptics, detractors, critics and other bemused folks looking into it. Cuz they're going to say "here's this thing that's supposed to be ALWAYS true, yet it's got a big flaw in it. That makes that promise false. As in NEVER true. How can we not generalize?" Generalities beget generalities. I think that holding onto the specific promise of Scn as Scn and talking about OT just sets people up for being put into a little box. Put there by themselves. It's not so much that detractors are putting you into a box, they've found your box that you constructed and into which you set up housekeeping and then they kind of poked it a bit with their sneaker.

I know that ANY ology or ism is a matter of degree and that it's possible to spend years on any of those things and not get too far or sometimes even do rather well, but I've seen no homo novis.

I object to the generalization of all Free Zoners are this or that but in a rather gentle half hearted way. I think they set themselves up for it.

Here's a piece of advice I gave to someone (which I actually gave when I was still clinging to the Scn'ist label and branding, if you can believe that):
We'll call her Jane. She wanted to know what I thought about doing FZ. She'd flirted with Scn on her own but had a lot of concerns. She was and is a brilliant iconoclastic decent woman who is very aware of the doings of CofS and has read a lot of Scn criticism and of Scn itself.

I said "Don't be a Scientologist. Be a Jane-ologist".

I honestly believe the only way Scn will survive is piecemeal. Individual ideas and methods being absorbed by other people and ologies and isms. This means the Scn branding goes away in those cases. I've already BEEN seeing it. This might make some people sad, but hell, it's not perfect anyway, it doesn't live up to its promise and if there's something cool in it, fine, have fun. There's too much squabbling and factionalism among Free Zoners. I've met a couple on line who I find to be utterly distasteful and others who I liked fine, but no more than I'd like or respect a Christian who seemed to be doing ok and to have some nifty insights. But it's not going to survive as any voice of Scn. Nothing will. But that doesn't stop anyone from doing things that help them.

I think that there are quite a few Indies and FZers who don't think Scn is perfect or that it lives up to all its promises. They know it's a matter of degree. I think that not everyone on the other side of the coin wants to admit that, though, no matter how many times people say they feel this way. My theory is that it's the use of the brand name that gets in the way.

So my solution for my beloved FZ and indie friends - and for anyone else who's thinking WTF do I do (ideologically speaking) is be a
John-ologist or a Jane-ologist or a Emma-ologist. Only John can be a Johnologist. Only Ems can be an Emmaologist. We don't want no more steekin' cults, nobody here is trying to be a cult leader. Let's just be ourselves, do TRs and get auditing if we want or totally eschew that but let's just call ourselves just OURSELVES and drop the labels. I think that would lead to more harmony and it might free some minds.

This is very nice rant, Claire! :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

I had pleasure while reading it, because you expressed my thoughts, too. :hifive::handinhand:

Everyone is entitled to do his own thing. I have friends on FB whose views are ranging from "Scn is perfect" to "Scn is nothing but crap". I don't and won't argue with them or label them or show them how stupid/crazy they are.
And I'm grateful that they don't do it to me, either. So, it's only beneficial for both sides - to do your thing while letting others do theirs, without interfering or "showing the right path".
Perhaps, the only useful thing one can do is to make factual information available (without forcing it down his throat). And if that doesn't help, well... just leave him alone, doing his thing (while being careful he doesn't hurt others around him, and others you like).

Re: Polarity
What you described seems to be Western mentality vs. Eastern mentality issue.
You seem to have adopted Eastern mentality, and, like me, don't like this *Black and White* thinking, and *Us vs. Them* attitude.

Western concept of Dualism is pretty much a Polarity.
Oriental is more of a - one complements another and they don't exist without one another.

Moral dualism is the belief of the great complement (in eastern and naturalistic religions) or conflict (in western religions) between the benevolent and the malignant. Most religious systems have some form of moral dualism - in western religions, for instance, a conflict between good and evil.

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dualism
 
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