Disclaimer: This section presents a few reasonable texts critical of Scientology. This does not mean, however, that it supports in anyway the so-called Scientology "critics" who thrive in the alt.religion.scientology newsgroup. The majority of the posters in this newsgroup are extremists who promote a phobic picture of "cults", support discriminative and oppressive measures by governments, and aggressively attack those who disagree with them.
As Scientologists we are indoctrinated to some extent. By this I mean that we become less than adequately critical of Scientology and of LRH. And this is a no-no. It violates study tech. More fundamentally, it contradicts a good deal of basic Scientology philosophy, and it's from here that everything else is built.
As a Scientologist, one has no business accepting *any* data without having evaluated it thoroughly, critically, and entirely to one's satisfaction. Yet we all end up doing exactly this. The only difference amongst us is that some of us do it more or less than others.
The vast, vast majority of Scientology data is perfectly legitimate, if not downright brilliant and extraordinary. The more Scientology one does, the more clearly one understands this and the greater one's appreciation of LRH becomes. But there is also data included in the subject and authored by LRH which is simply false. I'm referring almost exclusively to what is actually a minuscule portion of Scientology policy, and not to Scientology philosophy or the tech. We'll look at an example in a moment.
If, as Scientologists, we were not indoctrinated to be less than adequately critical, this false data would be known and clearly evident as such to all of us.
If we're envisaging what the ideal scene might be here, we might ask the question, "Who, if not a Scientologist, should be well aware of anything in Scientology or about LRH which may be legitimately criticized?" Not exaggerated or incorrectly evaluated as critics almost invariably do, but correctly evaluated and criticized simply because it warrants criticism. The answer, of course, is no one.
KSW 1. There are parts of this policy which make a great deal of sense, and this is evident. But there are also some parts of it which are just false and make no sense at all, and this is evident too.
Take a look at the following excerpts in a new unit of time. I'm going to add some comments here and there to bring to your attention just some of the false or questionable data included in them.
I don't actually know how true any of this may or may not be, as I don't have all of the data concerning suggestions others made. The point here is that probably no one knew this other than LRH.
That individuals, not groups, evolve truth is, I'd say, evident. This does not mean, however, that only one person in any given group or only one person on an entire planet is capable of evolving truth.
LRH took the opportunity on a number of occasions in the early fifties to acknowledge the "thinking men" who came before. He acknowledged that he owed much to them. They too had evolved truth. Amongst these were Sigmund Freud, who made real the concept of resolving problems in the present by locating and re-examining traumas in the past.
Why LRH later stopped acknowledging others is a legitimate question to ask. Why he went on later to attack Freud viciously and to thoroughly invalidate his work - about the best he goes on to say about him is that he was a cocaine addict - this is a good question to ask too.
Neither you nor I are familiar, of course, with the "actual record" to which he refers, and one might legitimately wonder whether any such record exists.
Let's look at the numbers ourselves to see what we're looking at here. Let's just imagine any old group. And let's give its members as much time as they need to dream up 100,000 ideas which are to be applied to technology. 20 of these ideas will be okay at least insofar as they wouldn't destroy good technology. Some of them would be the ones that actually resulted in new and good technology or which would improve already existing and good technology. And 99,980 of them would destroy what good technology this group already had.
A few hours ago I visited my computer manufacturer's website to check out their latest computers. Then I took a quick look at some of IBM's. I know that both of these companies have more than one person dreaming up technology; they have quite a few. I imagine as well that if these people had been dreaming up 20 good ideas and 99,980 that would destroy what good technology they already had - well, I don't think I'd have been able even to access their sites. Do you?
Do you know of any group yourself, large or small, with such percentages? I don't.
The data is not just obviously false. It's obvious that it's ridiculously false.
If it were even remotely, remotely, remotely true, we wouldn't all still be living in caves, we'd have long ago destroyed all caves and become extinct.
Okay, just one more observation about this paragraph. Democracy. That democracy has given us inflation and income tax is false. There are a number of causes of inflation; none of them have anything to do with democracy. Just look at countries which have not been or are not now democracies and you'll see no lack of inflation. Same goes for income tax or, for that matter, unjust taxes of any kind.
That democracy has pushed Man further into the mud is false. Once can select just about any democracy and take a look at what has happened in it for however long it has been a democracy. In almost all cases one sees that these countries have become more and more democratic as time has gone by and that the people living in them have not been pushed further into the mud, but that their overall condition has risen and continues to rise.
Modern democracies are not all fun and games and ideal scenes all over the place. Neither can we assign the progress of the 20th century to democracy as though nothing else had gone on. But here we're viewing trends over long periods of time. And I should think that if democracy were so bad, and if countries have become more and more democratic as they have in the last century, we wouldn't have experienced the almost incredible progress we have.
These three false data about democracy (inflation, income tax, mud) are, in fact, just as ridiculously false as the "actual record."
The false datum here is his conclusion that group efforts will not add to Scientology or successfully alter it. To state that "in its formative stages it was not discovered by a group" is fine. But this is hardly a datum from which one can then go on to conclude anything at all. And especially in view of the fact that the group we're discussing is composed of individual Scientologists who are supposed to be able for starters and who are then supposed to become more and more able all the time.
In other words, the rest of us are up to nothing better than keeping score. And this only so long as any score-keeping doesn't affect basic principles, which is fine, or "successful applications," which is actually not fine if now, nearly fifteen years after LRH's death, someone discovers a "successful application" is not actually successful at all. Some of the policy off which the GO operated and OSA continues to operate, for example, is not successful in the least, but we'll get to this stuff later.
Once more, this doesn't mean that "discovery contribution" could not be part of the broad picture. He has given no legitimate reason, nor does he in the rest of this issue, to validate such a conclusion. And many of the reasons he does give are false.
This is actually my "favorite" in the entire issue. One is meant by this point to be in awe of LRH. Now, a certain amount of awe is fine. It's due him. No problem here. But anything can be exaggerated, including awe. And it's the exaggeration here which creates another false datum. And it's not just a bit of exaggeration; it's a whole hell of a lot of exaggeration.
I don't know about you, but when I used to read this, I'd sit there and wonder, in awe, just how he *did* come "to rise above the bank"? I didn't wonder long, though, because he leads one to believe that even speculating about it would be a waste of time. Why? Well, it's obvious: I'm some sort of second-rate thetan who's not up to comprehending something like this. So, I'd leave the concept sitting there as a great and profound mystery - to be resolved some day.
But guess what? There's no great and profound mystery. There's not even a minor and shallow mystery. There's no mystery at all. What does "rise above the bank" actually mean? Well, it doesn't mean anything different than what any of us does when any of us rises above the bank. I rise above the bank at least a few times a day. I'm sure you do too. Just as I'm sure just about everyone else does. If we didn't, we'd be back to the no-more-caves, now-we're-extinct scenario.
This statement is actually nothing more than a mystery sandwich designed to inspire more awe and to establish more distance between himself and the rest of us. So, fine, let's say there's some distance. Let's say there's lots of distance. But just how much distance is there supposed to be here?
And how does it compare to other statements he made which are along the lines of, "If I can do it, I figure you can too." Which statements seem to be considerably saner to me.
Nope, the "rise above the bank" bit is just another take on the basic concept of this issue which is, essentially, that compared to LRH, the rest of us are, more or less, just walk-on parts, supporting actors, bit players, or in his words, coordinators, tabulators, friends who helped out with financial contributions, etc.. Little guys. Runts. Compared to the incomparable Source.
And not just now, but for goodness knows how long, and at least until he cancels or revises the issue himself, as per policy no one else can cancel or revise LRH issues except LRH.
As I mentioned a moment ago, I consider LRH is rightfully due considerable awe. Lots of considerable awe. Whole lots of considerable awe. But I also consider that he went way out of his way in this issue to assign himself considerably more awe than is his due. This is what I mean by exaggeration. And an exaggeration is a false datum.
Most of the above is either false or mere assumption or just meaningless. An example of the last is also the most interesting bit: that Man has never before evolved workable mental technology. This is also false, as there was *some* workable technology before, and there's also been *some* workable technology since, and which isn't Scientology. But mostly it's just meaningless. Before Scientology there was certainly little workable mental technology. And there's certainly nothing else around - zip - to compare to it even vaguely today. But, hey, until a couple of centuries ago, Man hadn't developed industrial technology to amount to much, either. And until just a few decades ago, Man was still using slide rules to speed up calculations and hadn't even dreamed of computers.
Now, the idea here isn't to compare Scientology to computers. Nor is it to take anything away from what LRH did discover or any of the truly amazing tech he developed. The idea is just not to exaggerate. Because *any* exaggeration is false.
The idea, then, is to correctly evaluate things and to arrive at a correct estimation.
How far would he have gotten, for example, without the e-meter? He didn't develop it, Volney Mathison did. And Volney wouldn't have developed it if a whole lot of people hadn't developed a whole lot of things first.
How soon would LRH have even gotten off the ground if it hadn't been for Freud popularizing some of the basic concepts of psychoanalysis in the late 19th and early 20th century?
In other words, are we to understand that LRH descended from Heaven, "rose above the bank," and developed something that no one else can touch for fear of destroying it at the odds of 100,000 to 20?
Or are we to understand that as extraordinary as was, and as remains, what he did, perhaps it was also about time that something like Scientology was developed?
And perhaps it's also about time that the Church of Scientology organized things such that at least some of its more questionable policy were actually evaluated against the effects it actually creates.
I chose KSW 1 because *some* of the data in it is at the heart of what I consider are the very few things wrong with Scientology.
I also chose it because it is at the same time at the heart of the indoctrination Scientologists receive and which is subsequently drummed into them, over and over again, and enforced at *all* costs.
There isn't anything more sacred in Scientology than KSW 1.
Which is absolutely batty when we realize that it's not the Scientology Axioms, it's not the Dianetic Axioms, it's not fundamental philosophy or tech of any kind. It's just a flipping policy letter with some perfectly correct data and some perfectly false data, the latter of which are entirely in conflict with ... some of the Scientology Axioms, some of the Dianetic Axioms, and some of the fundamental philosophy and tech of Scientology and Dianetics.
Okay, let's get to the fact that all Scientologists end up with a button on LRH. How can a Scientologist not develop such a button when he's so thoroughly indoctrinated to have an *exaggerated* opinion of LRH?
Now, this wouldn't be so bad if we were talking about Bill Gates and Microsoft. Bill might indoctrinate Microsoft staff to have an exaggerated opinion of him. He could way exaggerate it. But however way he exaggerated it, we'd still be looking at Bill Gates and Microsoft, and very few people would be *that* impressed.
Instead we're looking here at LRH and Scientology. And this complicates things considerably. It was entirely unnecessary for LRH to exaggerate his accomplishments at all at all at all. They were already huge. So, what happens if we exaggerate something which is already huge, and exaggerate it not just a little but a whole hell of a lot? Well, we get something far too exaggerated than is going to be good for anyone's health.
This is why Scientologists end up with a button on LRH. Our estimation of him becomes way exaggerated. He goes up on a pedestal. Most Scientologists consider that he could do no harm. That he was perfect or as good as. It becomes an overt or a nasty of some other kind to even have a critical thought about him. And all of this is part of the indoctrination too.
As we know, Scientologists are sheltered from "entheta," and especially entheta about LRH. When not sheltered, they're discouraged from having any contact with it. And if that isn't enough, there are policies which also forbid contact with the sources of "entheta," "SP's." All of this is part of the indoctrination too.
I'm not interested in promoting entheta. But if there are critical facts to be known, why doesn't each and every Scientologist learn about these sooner or later? Instead there is really no one more ignorant of Scientology's or LRH's outpoints than Scientologists.
Okay, one last thing here. Why is it not just a good idea but actually indispensable to discover what, if anything, may have been not quite right with LRH?
If he had some aberrations, if these remained unhandled right up to his death, but if these aberrations *did not* end up in Scientology materials, then they could be considered little or nothing more than historical data. If, on the other hand, any such aberrations did work their way into Scientology materials, then it would be more than useful to know what these aberrations were.
This is why I've read several entheta biographies. It's why I've read all sorts of other stuff about LRH too. Almost all of this material is packed with its own false data, exaggerations, incorrect evaluations, and god knows what else. So, one needs to evaluate things correctly and one needs as well to exercise one's capacity to leave a lot of this data in "suspended animation" - if it's not possible to evaluate it correctly because one isn't able to verify the data, or because there's omitted data, or whatever, don't try to draw conclusions from it; just park it for the time being - without getting bent out of shape, way arc broken, disaffected, or whatever.
What happens with too many Scientologists when they finally do decide to look at some of this stuff is that they do not correctly evaluate some of it or a lot of it, but draw conclusions from it anyway, and so end up getting bent out of shape, etc..
The good news is that there is *no* reason *anyone* cannot correctly evaluate, or temporarily leave unevaluated, any of this data. This may be harder for some than for others, but that's all.
Unindoctrination Hat Part II
Some Scientologists fail to correctly evaluate some things. The result is that instead of becoming better, more aware, more responsible Scientologists, they become disaffected.
Some become disaffected to the point of becoming ex-Scientologists. Some just go into apathy on the subject. I imagine there are all sorts of gradients and manners of disaffection.
I consider any degree at all of disaffection to be an outpoint. This doesn't mean that when one finds out something about LRH or OSA or whatever, that one can't get annoyed or very, very annoyed, or arc broken, or anything else. Responses such as these are often pluspoints, of course, as they're understandable, rational responses to the surprises one experiences.
If, however, and after one has had some time to cool off and reason things out, one also leaves oneself with arc breaks, HE&R of some kind or other, motivators, etc. - I consider any and all such things to be outpoints. There's just no reason for these things to *persist*. One should be able to get through such stuff and out the other end.
After having re-evaluated all sorts of things myself, I don't, for example, have less arc for LRH. As he observed, understanding is composed of a, r, and c. So, I now have greater arc and greater understanding of him. I no longer have some of the awe I had before, but that's cool because it was misplaced to begin with. I no longer have some of the awed considerations I had before, but this is cool because they were misplaced too.
What I have now is a far more accurate appreciation of the man. And it *is* appreciation. A lot of it. In fact a whole heck of a lot of it. All that's gone is stuff that shouldn't have been there in the first place. The result is that I have far more *actual and genuine* understanding and appreciation.
This is what I consider any Scientologist should end up with after re-evaluating some things. If they end up with something else, I can only conclude that it's because they've managed to accomplish a good deal of misevaluation instead of evaluation.
Instead, and as mentioned above, all Scientologists should become better, more aware, more responsible Scientologists.
RE: The Veritas Site.
It's a games condition. When you're interested, do a search for "The McDonald Papers." Mid-nineties, if I recall correctly; a small group of well indoctrinated Scientologists led by Randy McDonald go into a games condition with management, as it has begun issuing SPD's which oblige Scientologists to pay all of their taxes. This was after the "war" with the IRS was ended.
Many or most or all of them were eventually declared. They have remained thoroughly indoctrinated. They were and remain conspiracy-theorists.
They've done a lot of invest into the corporate structure of the Church of Scientology and they have published documents which show that the CST, I think it is (Church of Spiritual Technology), owns the copyrights and trademarks. Also that Meade Emory, ex-Assistant Commissioner of the IRS, I think he was, is a member of the board of directors. And there's other stuff I've forgotten. Their conspiracy theory insists that Scientology was taken over by the IRS or god knows who; that LRH was drugged/controlled/whatever in his later years; and that Miscavige is just a pawn of those who are actually in charge.
As even some of the less intelligent people on ars have pointed out, whatever the legal papers may say, it is na´ve to think that they are more than legal papers or that anyone other than Miscavige is actually running things. But the Veritas (Latin for *truth*) crowd (Randy and co.) are too stuck in their games condition to understand this.
"The McDonald Papers" give the history of the genesis of this scene. And if I were writing a checksheet to train people on the subject of games conditions, I'd consider including them in the theory section.
RE: The criminal time track which has been under constant construction for a year or two
The gist of it is that management has been squirreling the tech and screwing up other things as well, so management are the bad guys. A similar take as Virginia's with the "squirrel sec checks" on OT VII.
What these fellows and the Veritas people keep missing, because they just won't confront it, is that although management is screwing up some things, they are not the primary Who. LRH is the primary Who. Most of management's screw-ups are nothing more than their attempts to apply various LRH policies and programs and orders and advices and who knows what else.
Now, if you've been management for nearly twenty years, and if you just keep making the same kind of screw-up over and over again in the name of Keeping Scientology Working, well, this isn't too bright, either, and it makes these people whos too. But if all of the management were replaced and no policy cancelled/revised, we'd just have other people committing and then repeating the same screw-ups over and over again.
Who are the good guys?
An area you'll have fun re-evaluating is PTS/SP philosophy. LRH developed some spot-on philosophy and some absolutely amazing tech. The Suppressed Person R/D, for example, is exactly what he wrote it was: magic.
I'd add, though, that some parts of the philosophy could be far better researched. In other words, and as just one example, I don't know that I'd be so quick to label some people SP's or PTS's.
Most Scientologists, for example, would consider many or most of the critics on ars to be SP's just because they're publicly criticizing/attacking Scientology. Well, things aren't quite this simple.
What is true is that ars critics, virtually without exception, have Scientology and LRH misevaluated big time. They've got *some* of the criticism right, but the rest of the criticism and everything else wrong. But this doesn't make them SP's either.
I think the biggest problem with critics of Scientology is that it's impossible to be a good one without understanding Scientology very well, and none of these people do. Even the ex's we read on ars end up screwing up much of whatever understanding they did have as part of the "way bad reaction" they experience becoming ex's.
All of these people experience overwhelm. The only difference is one of degree. Their stable data go for a loop, and they don't handle the resultant confusions as well as they otherwise might. As mentioned, some stable data need to go; others need to be revised; some old ones might be rehabed; and some new ones probably need to be formulated and adopted.
These people get some or a lot of this wrong. They don't dump some of their stable data that needs dumping; they do dump some that shouldn't be dumped; god knows what some of them rehab; and they may be less than adequately intelligent now and then in formulating and adopting new ones. From what I've seen, many of them readopt old ones; sometimes these even include real winners like, "I think with my brain."
So, we have an extraordinarily weird scene overall, actually. Critics who aren't particularly good critics; Scientologists who don't know there's anything major to fix in Scientology, let alone what it might be; and a very few Scientologists who do have a good estimation of what's wrong, but who can't speak freely because if they did, they'd be declared - for starters. LOL
Another thing that contributes to making this such a weird scene is that even when a critic gets some criticism right, instead of being given an acknowledgment or a "Hmm, I hope you're wrong, but we're going to look into this," he's roundly ignored. Unless he persists with his criticism, in which case he may end up being investigated by private investigators. LOL
In other words, the criticism scene is, and has always been, considerably more weird than it has any business being. The why and the who, however, are not critics. The why is some of the policy concerning criticism of Scientology and LRH. The who is LRH.
Do you think it can in fact be changed from within?
What I'm entirely certain about is that things can and will be sorted out. How and how long it might take - this is perhaps what makes this scene more interesting than anything else.
I'm thrilled, actually, that ars and activities connected to it are an element of the scene. Regardless of how bad some of the criticism is, Scientology needs external criticism. Any criticism would be better than none. Fortunately some of the criticism is quite good. Chris Owen's research into LRH's actual military record is an example.
The most important thing about ars and the rest of the critical stuff on the Net is that it's there. It's just a matter of time before more and more Scientologists get into it. Some of them will become disaffected and blow, just as some already have. Others will be more responsible. Slowly but surely, the Scientology indoctrination will become real as such to more and more Scientologists. If nothing else has a big impact first, such as Miscavige having a few cognitions, more and more Scientologists unindoctrinating themselves certainly will.
So, while there are aspects of this scene which can justly be considered serious, seriousness can be overdone. Part of the Scientology indoctrination, in fact, results in Scientologists taking Scientology and life way too seriously. Rather than the exaggerated seriousness heaped onto both of these in KSW 1 (another and big false datum), there are tons of LRH references along the lines of "seriousness equals mass" and "life is a game," and it is these which are quite true and sane.
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