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The New York Times
Restoration of Lost Scientology Materials Complete
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: January 8, 2010
CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) -- More than 1,000 unreleased recordings of lectures by L. Ron Hubbard and reams of corresponding writings have been unveiled in the culmination of a 25-year project to locate, restore and transcribe lost pieces of the Scientology founder's work.
Its followers say the materials amount to an opportunity to deepen understanding of the religion and to release the last known unpublished Hubbard works dealing with Scientology and Dianetics.
"It would be like discovering that Buddha, unbeknownst to anybody, had sat down and wrote down the entirety of his discoveries and it could be verified that he wrote it," said Tommy Davis, the church's top spokesman.
The new materials were announced in a New Year's celebration at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles that was broadcast to churches around the world last week and include 1,020 lectures and hundreds of corresponding booklets from courses and other sessions with Scientology ministers from 1953 to 1961. They include discussions of how Hubbard arrived at the principles of Dianetics and his research on everything from decision-making to personal responsibility.
They were recovered through a painstaking hunt that led members to find tapes and papers in a basement in Wichita, Kansas, a storage trailer in Phoenix, and a garage in Oakland, California, among other places. Some of the materials were believed to have been lost.
"We've been able to restore lectures we literally never thought would be heard again," Davis said.
The release marks the third and final batch of Hubbard works to be distributed as part of the decades-long project initiated by Hubbard himself but carried out after his 1986 death by the church's current leader, David Miscavige. Releases in 2005 and 2007 included updated versions of 18 basic Scientology books to correct transcriptional errors, as well as hundreds of other lectures given by Hubbard.
"It's so huge for our religion having these materials. It's really a renaissance," said Davis. "it's as if it's a rediscovery of our own scriptures and what they hold and what they mean."
All the materials -- contained on 970 compact discs and corresponding booklets in 57 binders -- are being shipped out of a Los Angeles warehouse to Scientology churches worldwide. Unlike writings related to upper-level coursework, they are not considered confidential; they are available to those outside the church and members of all levels.