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I must have reposted this essay 5 or 6 times already, but it is a gem, so I'm posting it again. It is perfect to show someone who is having doubts about their involvement in the CoS.
Warning - Very long but well worth it!
Warning - Very long but well worth it!
We all have dreams. I think that everyone with a good heart dreams of a better place for mankind, whether that be a freedom from disease, a more prosperous society with freedom from hunger and want, or a personal freedom without the worries, travails, and constraints of ordinary life. Just imagine if someone you trusted came to you and told you it was possible to live in a much better world. Imagine if all your worries about what you were going to do with your life were suddenly wiped away and you were going to help the world achieve that great society. Just for a second, really believe that.
Over three decades ago I thought my dream was coming true. I signed on to what I thought was to be the greatest adventure ever. I became a Scientologist and I have spent over half of my life promoting, supporting, and defending the Goals of Scientology. I believe strongly in making this world a better place to live. The majority of Scientologists I have met over the years have shared that goal. We just wanted a better place to live. Most are caring people, who are idealistic and willing to dedicate their lives to that effort. We gave and gave and gave. Long hours, low pay, poor conditions, nothing would stop us. We held high the Banner of Scientology, the Ultimate Truth!
So here I stand committing the unspeakable sin for a Scientologist, dissent. How did I come to such a state? It’s a long story, but it’s rather like many that have already been posted on the Internet discussion group - ARS(Alt. Religion. Scientology). I tried hard to do good and I am not anything like a suppressive person (a SP is a person who has harmful evil intentions and acts on them) that the Church would like you to believe. I really did cared about the future of Scientology; after all I had made it my lifetime’s work. Over the last few years I had become increasing concerned about the direction and progress of the Church. Despite Church Management’s reports to the contrary, it was clear to me that the Church’s great expansion, long promised, wasn’t happening. The acceptance and application of Scientology in the general public wasn’t anywhere near the level needed to help change conditions in society. I had become tempered against the incessant PR of "Huge" wins, which never seem to materialize anywhere else but during Scientology International Management (Int) closed televised events. While a few of the Upper Organizations (Orgs) got a face lift with some new uniforms and the promotion was made more professional, all I ever saw was the majority of orgs and missions doing poorly. Also I was seeing behavior I really didn’t like and thought very inappropriate for a church to condone, and it was getting worst.
About this time I became fascinated with the Internet and it was natural to survey the various Scientology Internet web sites. At first I was just curiously looking at the various sites. I would try to stay away from anything that I thought the Church didn’t approve of, especially documents regarding Scientology’s confidential materials. But as I read on I got answers to questions that I had for a long time. I became more curious and rebellious. Also I started to feel a little foolish that here I was, an OT and an old time Scientologist, being intimidated by the Church what not to look at or read. OT is short for "Operating Thetan", a coined word by Hubbard to describe the spiritual being, not his mind or his body, but the "I" who controls the mind and operates the body. A full OT, according to Hubbard, has tremendous powers and can control matter, energy, space, and time. He doesn’t need a body, but can inhabit it and move out of it by will. By applying Hubbard’s spiritual technology he said a person could rehabilitate once lost abilities and again be an OT. So why would the Church have to censor what an OT could read? Realistically and more honestly, an OT is a person who has completed certain confidential levels in Scientology.
From the start it was apparent the Internet was something different and revolutionary, much like the invention of the printing press. Information flowed freely and quickly. Unbeknownst to the Church of Scientology it was about to face its greatest challenge, Disclosure. Scientology International Management (INT) was woefully unprepared while the critics of Scientology were finally able to embrace the freedom of communication. I jumped in the WWW pouring over depositions, government documents, affidavits, newspaper articles, legal stipulation of facts (an important item because the Church agrees these things to be true), web sites, books, and anything I could get my hands on, and what I read shocked me. This was the stuff the Church’s Department of Special Affairs (OSA) saw and that I wasn’t allowed to see. I wasn’t naïve about this as I am well trained; staff experienced, and have done most of the auditing available. I realized that not all the data about the evils of Scientology were true, but I knew enough of personal experience to start to sort out the wheat from the chaff.
I read about a person with the Internet handle of "Safe" who was attacked by the Church for trying to reform it by bringing up issues where he thinks the Church is wrong. He posted anonymously on the Internet in ARS his thoughts regarding what he thought was incorrect applications of Scientology procedures by Scientology management. Much of what he said was in my opinion valid, but it really does not matter what he said. The idea that "Safe" communicates possible misdeeds is what upsets Church Officials. They went after him. They tried to find out who he was from his Internet Service Provider. It shocked me. I could think of no other religion, which would go psychotic over really what was simple criticism. Why was this I asked myself?
It reminded me of a reaction from Nazi Germany or the old Soviet Union. Frankly, what is at stake for the Church is simple. Scientology is an Absolute Dictatorship and any threat to it must be stopped at any cost. If Church members in mass start to question it, then it will come apart. The Church of Scientology depends on fear of eternal damnation to keep Church members under control.
Every Scientologist is taught, and has it drilled into him, that to be critical of L. Ron Hubbard and/or the Church of Scientology is to be guilty of hidden crimes, most likely against that which you are criticizing. Now I know that sounds silly, but you have to believe me that free speech, free ideas and critical thoughts are not welcome in this area. It is an essential part of Church doctrine that if you have criticism of Hubbard or the Church that you have done something wrong to Hubbard or the Church or have a mis-understood word regarding what they said. Who would speak up knowing that to speak objections is to be labeled a criminal in the eyes of a Scientologist? There is one way in Scientology, LRH’s way. Even now, almost Fifteen years after his death, his words hold hostage any intellectual freedom and are used in every communication to enforce what he wanted. Only now it’s David Miscaviage, Head of Scientology, who is the main interpreter.
First let me explain something to those who have not done services. The Church of Scientology is controlled by what is called the Sea Organization, which as I said earlier was formed by LRH when he went into hiding in the middle sixties. It was & is composed of fervent church members who have dedicated themselves to promote LRH and his goals. Members of the Sea Org live in a restricted environment for the most part. They are told what to think of current society and the happenings of everyday life. They are discouraged from watching TV or reading the news. They really don’t have leisure time. They are pushed and are always under the gun to produce more on their post. It is a very stressful life. The Sea Org was under the direct control of Hubbard and is where he ran the Church after he supposedly resigned in 1966. It continued to act under his direction up until he became too reclusive and unfit to govern in the Eighties. It continues to be the real ruling body of Scientology. No matter what anybody says or whatever corporate documents can be produce, Sea Org personnel control Scientology. Most experienced Scientologists realize that the corporate structure is only for protection from the government and the legal world to avoid taxes and scrutiny. The headman of the Sea Organization is David Miscaviage. He had been working his way into power from the early 80’s and by the time LRH died in 1986 he was able to dismiss any other pretenders and step into LRH’s void. He has aligned himself as Hubbard’s senior messenger, his protector of Scientology’s future, the savior of Scientology. So when David Miscaviage speaks, everyone listens. He is spoken of in awe. Myths are being created around him. His nickname is the COB, Chairman of the Board. Even old time Scientologists address him as "Sir." Whatever he says goes, and he justifies it to Church members by manipulating and aligning it to what Hubbard supposedly said. You have to understand this; Scientologists believe that Hubbard had the answer for everything. And I mean everything, from handling mental illness, to running a business, and even to the washing of windows on your car. I kid you not!
Therefore Rule #1 when speaking with a Scientologist is that they think they know all the answers and thus "they really can’t communicate with you." For all the talk about being there and listening, a Scientologist thinks LRH knew it all and thus Scientology has all the answers. In his mind he knows why you speak and do the things you do. There is no real two-way communication with a dedicated Scientologist. He is computing in his mind constantly and can NEVER agree with you over anything, which is critical of Hubbard or Scientology. L. Ron Hubbard belittled the "wog" world. "Wog" is a contemptuous word used by him to group most everybody in the everyday world and explain that they are trapped beings living an implanted life following their reactive mind commands. Virtually nothing in the "wog" world is acknowledged as innovative or original. Even when it comes to technology Hubbard relates that past civilizations had better computers. Hubbard says our current society is duplicating past society on some unknowing robotic level. It has all been done before in the trillions of years before this lifetime and he even goes on to say that nothing done in this lifetime is really harmful to you. Everything that makes life hard is due to past lives trauma. Hubbard implies that all the truth one needs is in Scientology, as it is the most basic and fundamental truth in this universe. So to a Scientologist all your protests or objections are symptomatic of crimes against Hubbard, the Church, or related subjects like religion. That’s why you hear Scientology handlers of picketers always asking what are your crimes, what have you done?
I think many older Scientologists, in their inner most private thoughts, know that something is very wrong with the Church. We have literally seen too much and so we speak privately to trusted friends over the strange practices of management and it’s failure to expand the Church. You have to understand this point. To a Scientologist the success of the Church surpasses everything. They truly believe Hubbard when he said in the Hubbard Policy Letter Keeping Scientology Working that, "the whole agonized future of this planet, every Man, Woman and Child on it, and your own destiny for the next endless trillions of years depend on what you do here and now with and in Scientology."
So those of us who dedicated ours lives to that goal get frustrated and tired of the explanations management uses to always blame somebody else for it’s lack of success. It always seems that this staff member was a Suppressive Person or that guy was not following Church policy. From lost LRH orders or newly discovered materials to the present "Golden Age of Tech" Drills, always it is LRH was right and somebody else did something wrong. Every few years Sea Org Management comes up with a new reason why the orgs aren’t doing well and unfortunately most Scientologists blindly accept it. Never is the Sea organization held up for criticism or fault. Never is the management team of David Miscaviage and his closest aides made responsible for their lack of results. Never is any responsibility laid on LRH's work.