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Disconnection as Spiritual Blackmail

July 16, 2009


I have this friend, let’s call him Sam (I’ll mix up names, genders and details a bit to protect the innocent). Sam is a dedicated Scientologist, an OT, and a major contributor to the IAS, the SuperPower building, etc., etc.  He raised his children in Scientology and was proud when his son and daughter joined the Sea Org.

Over the years, their visits and phone calls became fewer and fewer. Still, they assured him they were “doing great,” although they were vague about what they were actually doing.

Then one day he was shocked to hear that his daughter, let’s call her Mary, had blown the Sea Organization and had been declared suppressive. Sam was devastated as it meant he would have to disconnect from Mary. He couldn’t talk with her until she applied her A to E steps and got restored to good standing.

But Mary wasn’t about to do that. In fact, she was considering joining some other Ex-Sea Org members in a lawsuit claiming labor code violations, physical and emotional abuse while she had been in the Sea Org.

Sam was shocked. He trusted his daughter, he knew she was not a liar, but he could not believe the allegations. He began researching on the internet and was shocked at what he found.  He got in touch with some Ex-Scientologists, former friends of his, and listened to their stories.

Enter the Church “negotiators.”  They offered Sam and his daughter Mary  a “deal.”  If Mary would shut up about the abuses, and agree not to be part of any lawsuit, then her SP declare would be lifted. Her “freeloader debt” would be forgiven. She could be in touch with her family, even her brother, let’s call him Paul, who was still in the Sea Org.  And Sam would be forgiven for his foray into forbidden websites and contacts if he gave the Church representatives all of the names of people he had contacted and what they had said. In other words, if he ratted them out.

And if Mary refused? She would never talk to her family again. Not only that, but they showed her a pleading letter from her brother. He had been removed from his post in the Sea Org and assigned to menial work as he was “PTS.” Please, he urged her, take the deal, otherwise he might be RPFed or offloaded.

Mary signed. She dropped the lawsuit. She shut up. Sam stopped contacting any Ex-Scientologists and gave the Church all their names. In other words, they folded to the pressure.

Can I blame them? No.  They were under terrific pressure.

But what right does the Church have to play with our lives like that? What right do they have to grant or withhold our own communication with our loved ones? Who gave them that power?

It’s spiritual blackmail. What’s the difference between the Church’s behavior and a two-bit mobster shaking down shop owners for “protection” money?

Why do we agree to cut communication with our loved ones, our family, our children, based on the threats of the Church?

Why do we buckle under and agree not to speak about abuses and wrongnesses we see in the Church? Because we fear that power.  The power to ruin our families.

Back in the 60s, we used to say, “what if they called a war and nobody came?”

Well, what if they called for a disconnection and nobody disconnected?

  1. July 16, 2009 11:51 pm

    That is very disturbing. When I was a young girl (14) I was swayed by a few patrons of the church you are speaking of. They gave me a personality test~something about my potential, if I remember correctly. It was very exciting to a 14 year old girl. When I went home, and told my very open minded hippy parents about it, they almost took the house down in anger. It was quite a day. The only things I ever heard my mom say a very loud NO!!! too, were Scientology, and Cocain. Gives you something to think about. Hmmmmmmmm. Thank you for this.

  2. Rebel TOO permalink
    July 17, 2009 9:58 pm

    I was amazed to read this post as this is exactly what happened to two friends of mine whose daughter was in the S.O., left the SO, was declared and then began speaking out after she was refused “permission” to talk to her sister and parents. Finally after she was making a lot of noise, she was approached by OSA and offered a “deal”..if she shut up, her freeloader debt and declare would be cancelled and she could see her family. The rub? She and her family had to give up anyone they’d spoken to, websites they’d visited and any information they had on exes or people outspoken against the church. I was sickened to find this out. Thanks for writing this blog..all the articles are great and so true

  3. Christie permalink
    July 22, 2009 10:10 pm

    This is all true. I was invited to meet with OSA and my parents – and I figured it would be something like this, where I would have to sell my soul to be able to remain connected to my family. I refused to go to the meeting. After that, my family stopped speaking to me and my SP declare was officially broadly issued.

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