My co-audit twin and I have looked into this matter of hypnosis and belief, at length.
We are both aware of Hubbard's history and actual origins of his tech.
Speaking for myself, I have greatly benefited from Arnie's exposure of the hypnosis factor, as well as Veda's exposure of the true sources.
We have spotted and removed the hypnosis from our auditing, though there is a certain degree of hypnosis going on with almost anyone in any situation. The primary source of hypnosis in an auditing session is "altitude" - the idea that your auditor knows what he/she is doing, which becomes trust which can also become hypnosis if taken too far.
Taken too far? An extreme example would be these new Flag-trained "SuperPower" auditors - trained within an inch of their life to never reveal a speck of doubt (called "total certainty") or let your pc out of your total control. Doubt on the part of the pc? Send straight to ethics, or handle as a "resistive case."
The irony is that techniques (including certain questions on correction lists) exist in the "system" to undo bad effects of hypnosis, but they are not encouraged. No one in the system is really allowed to question it.
Having studied Hubbard's history at length, I will give out my opinion on how the tech developed and when he was both a "true believer" and earnestly working to make the tech benefit people (though with whatever motives you want to assign - they were all seemingly present in greater or lesser degree throughout - greed, ego, power, domination - and yes, nobler motives that I agree are evident in the work he poured into a great many of the lectures and writings). The Alan Walter write-up is the most comprehensive on all this.
Dianetics actually was developed by Freud-Breuer. My co-audit twin did a side-by-side comparison of translated lectures done ~1911 when they first came to America to lecture. It is all there. Engrams, engram chains. (Yes, William Sargeant employed these techniques and wrote a book about it which Arnie says Hubbard may well have had access to in his internships at Elizabeth hospital.)
for an in-depth study of this background.
He "borrowed" those ideas for Dianetics and when it got popular he worked on furthering the research - not always by ethical means.
The primary reason it became slightly more "workable" was the number of researchers doing the work and coming up with new ideas and techniques.
But the real discovery - the engine that runs Scientology and its "workability" came not from Ron but from Jack Horner:
The Origin of Repetitive Processes
During that period when I was working at the
Los Angeles organization, about the time I left
it, I developed a form of what was called “con-
cept straightwire”, which was a set of repetitive
techniques. Not repeater phrases, but a repetitive
question. So I introduced into Dianetics the
idea of the repetitive question, which incidentally
I’d forgotten about until A E. van Vogt
(American science fiction writer) reminded me
of it. Hubbard did such a good job of taking the
credit I forgot that I’d developed it
Another important point worth mentioning is that Hubbard probably did not care about the auditing - until - he needed it. In 1951, after Hubbard had kidnapped Alexis and ran to Cuba, where he dictated Science of Survival to his hired companion (Richard de Mille who also wrote "How to Live Though an Executive"). Near the end of this stay, he wrote a desperate letter claiming he was so sick he was dying, and Don Purcell at his own expense flew a team of auditors to rescue Hubbard. While Hubbard was clearly involved in drugs, paranoia and possibly crime (which would have been embezzlement of the New Jersey foundation, which could not pay its bills or account for its money), it is my opinion that Hubbard got a taste of the miracles of talk therapy, attention and care, using his techniques to make him well. He returned to the states with new-found enthusiasm and used Purcell's largesse to establish Dianetics in Wichita (then shortly after turned on his rescuer - a lifelong pattern typical of a psychopath).
The next major step for Hubbard's own belief in the possibilities of the developing technology was, I believe, the arrival of Evans Farber from California who drove all the way out to Phoenix, to introduce Ron to "Be 3 Ft Back of Your Head" in 1952. Apparently, it "worked" on Ron. This revitalized and launched Scientology.
Well, back to Horner's repetitive process, these began trickling in from the field and soon Hubbard had a whole collection of effective processes which he catalogued in "Creation of Human Ability." (late 1953 - published 1954 coincident with the launching of the Scientology religion).
What the repetitive process does, and its value regardless of Scientology or L. Ron Hubbard, is to direct attention into a focused area (not so focused as hypnosis - but can go that way) much in the way that Socratic questioning and the Buddhist Koan accomplishes. The latter is also widely believed to accelerate spiritual growth - via the student-master relationship.
Of course, as was pointed out on this thread, the lower bridge works also on communication and attention. Adding on top of that, it is the repetitive process that "clears" an area up a bit, with a resulting realization on life (which can be perceived, as I do, as "spiritual progress" - if not intellectual progress - exercising the mind).
A lot of people don't realize that the "tech" has already gone into the field of psychology (Traumatic Incident Reduction - not just Dianetics, but the Grades, as well) thanks to Frank Gerbode (a psychiatrist and spurned Mission Holder). So the "tech" has use and acceptance outside the Scio universe.
Yes, Hubbard lied, defrauded and harmed. That is not okay with me.
But contrary to KSW#1, where he lied so badly about "source" - the workable parts of the tech were brought in by many incredible students of the subject.
Still, he led this movement and a positive spin-off of his "make a million starting a religion" was actual, usable stuff that gets people feeling better and "releases" them from the trauma and preoccupation with life problems (again, it is the care and attention factor, plus the mechanics of looking at an area repeatedly until a barrier in that direction is surmounted).
Who knows what it could do if matched with a sane, scientifically correct cosmology and truths that are not booby-trapped as the Scio axioms are.
In my humble opinion, if you want to get back at this charlatan who stole your dreams and wasted your lives (me too!), don't make the mistake of attacking "his" tech - cuz it ain't his. He, hisself, said that "all wisdom belongs to the common man" in January 1965, then turned on us and turned out KSW#1, the disconnection machine called "ethics," an authoritarian Org Board, and secreted Power ALL THAT SAME YEAR (see the above Alan Walter story on Reg Sharpe observing Ron first going psychotic in Summer 1964 - coincident with stealing the Study Tech from the Berners).
After cheating on his wife Mary Sue one too many times, getting deep into his GPM case - over, by his own words, "missed withholds" - he went psychotic (blowing Saint Hill for Rhodesia) and never really recovered. Inventing OT III in 1967 sealed the deal. He now "believed his tech" - lies and all. From there on, his product was destroyed families and lives - the continuing saga of the authoritarian Sea Org.
Not that he was exactly the "good guy" before that, because during this "golden era" of tech development (1951-1964 - as I see it) where he was "winning" with his tech and excitedly pushing the research along, he was still doing other men's wives, booze, mafia-style intimidation, writing psychotic letters to governments, and inventing "Psychopolitics" (1955) passing it off as "Soviet."
I am enjoying the benefits of co-auditing, but it is by no means the only way to handle life and you can get messed up if you think that is so. Balanced with actively pursuing your own goals in life, and study of subjects of interest (outside the Scio bubble) it is actually quite helpful.
That is a nice post Watchful and I'm glad you're back here ... I really wish that you would also now take the extra step (and I expect you will when you feel you are ready) and accept that you are almost certainly OK just as you are and need nothing (on a regular basis) to "improve" yourself (ie co-auditing).
Why people get so hung up on what needs fixing (via auditing) about themselves is completely beyond me ... if there is an issue and you know about it (which most of us do) then fair enough, put some work in to that specific issue and fix it ... but just fannying around hunting for something for the sake of it seems such a waste of time and can create issues (of introversion at the very least).
I like a clean and organised office, house, garden, shed and car and sometimes find myself looking for stuff to sort out (lol) and have to stop myself because I'll pick it up next time I am in reorganising/cleaning mode and know I need to teach myself to relax and just enjoy life for what it is. Auditing reminds me very much of that (hunting out issues and possibly creating them for the sake of it or out of habit).
Why bother? I bet you are a very good person just exactly as you are and it comes across in your posts.