Just more evidence that Ron was a Con.
I am of the opinion that Ron was sold on the Rosicrucian/OTO psychic/spiritual abilities/tricks.
I think his affrimations (admissions) demonstrate that he believed in this stuff himself.
Rosicrucian (the version he studied) and OTO teachings lay great emphasis on what one might call spiritual or psychic magic.
I think Ron bought into this stuff, it fed his must-cause personality. It's all there in his magical admissions.
Scientology was his creation of a magical school, disguised at lower exoteric levels as a psychological school.
The esoteric teachings were scattered amongst the exoteric lower level teachings - in his live lectures especially, which were delivered to his inner school (Briefing Course) students. This esoteric magic was discussed by him even before he formalised his upper esoteric levels.
His esoteric teachings (OT levels) were his manifestation of his spiritual/psychic magic beliefs. Not surprisingly they tended not to produce the desired magic effects so Ron struggled and worked and devised revisons and new "discoveries" to try to bring his magic into realisation.
Most students in the Rosicrucian schools he left behind would be well aware that the man was doomed to fail and even doomed to a bad later life and bad death.
Was it a con?
Well from the outside it looks like a con, because it is a manipulative attempt at magic that is doomed to be a fail magic. It was secretive with levels and intentions not revealed even to the students of the magic processes (OT students) because Ron's intention was always to realise his own magical goals not to actually develop any magical powers in his devotees.
His exoteric school (lower level scientology) is a simple win/trance psychological school with it's own layers of decept, designed to select out suggestible subjects on which he could impose his esoteric magic.
So, yes it is a con in that it is not what it appears and the "wins" sold are not what they seem. The actual result of scientology levels is reduced freedom. This was a deliberate goal from "men are your slaves" Hubbard.
But Hubbard believed in the magic he touted as OT powers.