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Certainty, Knowingness and Blind Faith

May 25, 2010

Okay, I’ll admit it, I’m a fan of Lost. And I did watch the finale. One of my favorite scenes is the one where Locke screams at Jack, “Why is it so hard for you to believe?” And Jack fires back, “Why is it so easy for you to believe?” Sounds like some of our discussions.

I’ve been thinking about the subjects of knowledge, certainty and belief. How do we know something? How can we be certain of something? Where does knowledge end and belief begin?

In an Ability Magazine article, LRH said, “as Scientologists, we are Gnostics, which is to say that we know that we know.” The Church website says that “Scientology is a Gnostic faith in that it knows it knows.” So what is Gnosticism?

Gnosticism was an ancient mystical religious movement. Aside from any trappings or mythology they may have accumulated, they sought what they called gnosis, which loosely translates as “knowledge.” But they were talking about a special type of knowledge: intuitive knowledge gained through spiritual insight, rather than knowledge gained from rational or reasoned thinking. Gnosis is obtained through mysticism, meditation, or contemplation.

The equivalent Scientology term would be “knowingness,” which LRH defines as “self-determined knowledge.”

We also have the word agnostic, which sounds like the opposite of Gnostic, but really isn’t. Agnosticism isn’t a creed, but a method of skeptical, evidence-based inquiry. Sometimes, agnostics are lumped in with atheists as “people who don’t believe,” but it would be more accurate to say that an agnostic is someone who differentiates between belief and knowledge. An agnostic theist, for instance, may believe in God, but doesn’t know that God exists.

I would say that since leaving Scientology, I’ve become more of an agnostic. I believe, for instance, that I am an immortal being who has lived before and will live again. I believe that. I don’t know that – that is, I have no hard evidence that it is true. I haven’t looked up old gravestones or talked to people from a past life. So it is really a belief that I hold.

But as a Scientologist, I would have said that I know these things. I had “certainty.” I had “knowingness.”

Well, what is certainty? Here’s an interesting synonym study from the Random House dictionary: “Belief, certainty, conviction refer to acceptance of, or confidence in, an alleged fact or body of facts as true or right without positive knowledge or proof. Belief is such acceptance in general: belief in astrology. Certainty indicates unquestioning belief and positiveness in one’s own mind that something is true: I know this for a certainty. Conviction is settled, profound, or earnest belief that something is right: a conviction that a decision is just.”

In The Factors, LRH says, “Certainty, not data, is knowledge.” Well, that’s certainly a Gnostic idea. Knowledge, not as data or information, but as spiritual certainty.  And how do we gain that certainty?  In Scientology, we were encouraged to evaluate the value of the tech through our own subjective personal experience. As LRH put it, “For a Scientologist, the final test of any knowledge he has gained is, ‘did the data and the use of it in life actually improve conditions or didn’t it?'”

Well, fair enough. But evaluating one’s own personal, subjective experience is always tricky. A lot of factors enter in – hopes, expectations, group pressure.  I remember one of my first experiences in Scientology was a “Congress” in 1968 at the Masonic Temple on Wilshire, where John McMaster ran “Grand Tour” from Creation of Human Ability as a group process: “Be near Earth. Be near the Moon. Be near the Sun,” and so on.  Well, did I actually exteriorize and leave my body? Who knows? I felt giddy, even exhilarated at the thought that it might be possible.

There is something known as confirmation bias, which describes our natural tendency to focus on information that confirms our preconceptions and neglect information that contradicts those preconceptions. Confirmation bias is most likely to appear for issues that are emotionally significant or for well-established personal beliefs. As a Scientologist, I tended to focus on my positive experiences in auditing, and to neglect or explain away my negative experiences.  Thus I came to know (in the gnostic sense of subjective spiritual experience) that Scientology worked.

I had no actual objective knowledge that Scientology worked. I had not done an extensive study of cases or folders or results. I had not seen any scientific study validating Scientology. Yet I would have emphatically stated, if asked, “I know Scientology works.” In retrospect, it would have been more accurate to say “I believe Scientology works based on my own subjective experience.”

There’s nothing wrong, really, with gnostic knowledge or mysticism or “knowingness.” People have the right to think or believe what they want. The difficulty arises when one’s inner spiritual “knowingness,” one’s beliefs, is confused with actual real-world knowledge.

“How do you know David Miscavige is honest?” you ask a Scientologist. “I just know,” they reply, “I perceive that he is honest. That’s my reality. I have a knowingness that he is a good man.” And if you try to give them some facts or data about the man? They don’t want to hear it – after all “certainty, not data, is knowledge.”  And they are already certain that Miscavige is OK.

Let’s call that kind of “knowingness” by its true name – faith. And blind faith at that.

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110 Comments
  1. sherrymk permalink
    May 25, 2010 5:46 am

    Ah Jeff..here it is. Now this is a subject for much discussion.

    As one moves up through the “bridge” of Scientology and especially “OT” levels, this point of “Knowingness”, or “certainty not data is knowledge” is drilled and hammered into you. It got to such a point in my life that it basically ruined my marriage. I would just “know” something, like that a contractor had “good intentions” and could be trusted, that I would just “make it go right” about this or that, or that I would just “be able to make the money for the $100K I had just donated”, while my husband was one of those people who actually RESEARCHED stuff, looked at cold hard FACTS, evaluated by gathering DATA. WTF? How could I live with someone who just didn’t “perceive and know”? How mundane. How, je ne sais quois, but how un-OT.

    Now I’m not saying that there isn’t such a thing as perception, in fact I rarely doubt my own perceptions, but I’ve also been wrong a few times too(ha!). But this thing with “certainty not data is knowledge” is distorted to the point of insanity within the C of S. One is told that you just “have to know” that this or that will work, that you can “come up with the money”, that you KNOW this is right (whatever agenda the C of S is pushing). God forbid you need “time” to “figure it out” or “think about it” or gather data about it. That’s what is called a “comm lag”…and what was pushed on me as the difference between my husband and myself. We had different “comm lags” as regards such unimportant issues as finance, sound planning for retirement, etc.

    One thing I am certain about..and that is that I am not certain about anything that I can’t observe for myself. What am I observing? Data, information, the “stuff” of life, the planet, people. When it comes to humans, it’s all up for grabs, in my book. People change their minds, they reevaluate, they look at things from different viewpoints..I think one’s own certainty comes from these evaluations of one’s own observations and not doubting that what one sees is what one sees..something the C of S is scared to death to have anyone actually do. Another of those self-serving “truisms” .

  2. Nightmares Getting Less permalink
    May 25, 2010 5:47 am

    Jeff,

    Good stuff. I have to admit that at some times, I disagree with you on your position in regards to LRH et all, but this blog did strike a chord.

    And we are both relating alike (one who has spent 3/4th’s of his lifetime in Scientology/Sea Org).

    I have always respected your writing ability, and you do have artistic talents I hope and wish you expand upon.

    Please keep em coming.

  3. May 25, 2010 8:06 am

    Thanks, Jeff!
    This post definitely helps me pick up the pieces and put them together into full picture.
    I’ll have to give it some more thought but want to start here – for a spin (hopefully, positive one).
    It relates to embracing it all by one person: gnostic vs. agnostic, believer vs. atheist, subjective realist vs. objective realist, my knowledge vs. common knowledge, my truth vs. objective truth.
    It might sound like oxymoron to say “I’m a believer AND I’m an atheist” but it can become clear when you explain, “I’m a believer as spirituality is concerned, and I’m an atheist as religion and church are concerned”. The same, I believe, is with others “____ vs. ___”

    I’ll start with the video that Monte posted here:
    https://leavingscientology.wordpress.com/2010/04/28/%E2%80%9Cthe-most-ethical-group-on-the-planet%E2%80%9D/#comment-2464

    The video itself is:

    It’s about brain. Let me say how I see it now: gnostic is “right brain fan” and agnostic “left brain fan” but in fact those are two sides of one thing. And parts of one being. Which part of brain is to choose to use? I think, it should be both – in balance and harmony, helping each other. And who is an individual? – The one who uses both (or sticks to one of them).

    Will get back to it.

    • May 26, 2010 1:21 pm

      Comments to this post added greatly to my understanding.
      Thank you everyone who contributed.

      Here I go:
      Philosophy is the basic/primary/fundamental stronghold of any system of beliefs, of any fixed practice, of any religion.

      Basically, we have “materialistic” vs. “idealistic” views of the world.

      My history:
      I was born into communistic society. Philosophy was “materialism”. I believed in it.
      Then I joined Scientology. Philosophy was “idealism”. I believed in it.

      Now, you might argue with whether “materialism” (agnosticism) is correct, or “idealism” (gnostisism) is correct, I know this: Both are good.
      Both illuminate some parts of existence, and tell “that’s the only way how you can look at it!”
      The full picture includes BOTH (but doesn’t say which one is primary and which one is secondary). It just takes in both, and that is full pucture of existence.

      On the other hand, WE (humans) are the ones assigning the values (IMPORTANCE) to things and us (“Where am I?”, “Who am I?”, “Why am I here?”, “What’s my purpose in life?”…) which otherwise DOESN’T MATTER o the world at large.
      And such assignmnets have become quite RANDOM throughout the ages.
      To that, see this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outline_of_philosophy#Fundamental_philosophical_questions

      “Important” is what we GIVE importance. Such is a rather random assignment of values (importances) based on educatedness, experience, preferences, circumstances,..
      Then follows INEVITABLE conclusion and enforcement of this philosophy (once there are adherents to follow).

      Philosophies are sticky.
      No wonder people fell for LRH (since he has made many “breakthroughs” – convincing people
      that all other philosophies were faulty, “but mine is the best and workable”).

      Resume:
      Every single one philosophy illuminates certain parts of the whole picture. There is NO philosophy giving one view of the whole picture. All philosophies are man-made (including LRH’s). Therefore they can’t be “good for all”.

      The “way out”, as I see it, is to be open and take from anything (learning-from-life-and-teachings-experience) you are exposed to – the parts that resonate to you, and throw away the rest. It helps to be yourself (and not somebod else’s Kool-Aide drinker).

      NB: People out there just live and enjoy their lives while we are here trying to figure it all out (about “How to live further?”, “What’s the reason?”, “What are the goals?”).

      IMHO

      • Jeff permalink*
        May 26, 2010 5:12 pm

        Just one point on your post – agnosticism and materialism are not the same thing at all. Look up each subject and you will find that they are not at all synonymous.

      • May 26, 2010 5:16 pm

        Names are secondary to me, Jeff. I’m not after labels, and – to tell you the truth – not to support the truthfullness of your post here.
        I’m after my own truth, that’s all.
        And in my truth those things as agnosticism and materialism are of the same same side of a swing. But I don’t care.

      • May 26, 2010 5:40 pm

        Jeff, didn’t mean “I don’t care” to be directed to you and you views.
        I meant that I don’t care to be right in this “intelligence battle”.

      • Jeff permalink*
        May 26, 2010 5:53 pm

        To quote Daniel Patrick Moynihan: “You’re entitled to your own opinions. You’re not entitled to your own facts. ”

        These terms mean quite different things. Materialism is a belief. Agnosticism is scepticism towards all beliefs – including materialism.

      • May 26, 2010 6:11 pm

        “Agnosticism is scepticism towards all beliefs – including materialism”. – that should mean it being towards *everything*, including agnosticism as well. IMHO.

  4. Fidelio permalink
    May 25, 2010 8:43 am

    Jeff,

    another masterpiece of dissertation. Thank you!
    Your astute and even ruthless way to take things apart guides me to sharpen up my deliberations. Thanks for the challenge…
    My very best, Fidelio

  5. May 25, 2010 9:19 am

    I would actually like some serious, deep scientific studies regarding Scientology, auditing results, IQ etc. Incredible how that hasn’t been accomplished in something like 60 years.

    Anybody who wants a well documented case regarding reincarnation I suggest you read Soul Survivor about that boy who is a reincarnated WW II fighter pilot. Incredible much details and the boy went and met the pilots from his past life and recognized some of them etc. He also described how he chose his parents at a hotel in Hawii. The boy didn’t even know his parents had been there according to his father.

    • John Doe permalink
      May 26, 2010 4:35 pm

      It was always a farce to me, those IQ tests. You take a test, get some auditing, and then take the exact same test. Hey, you know what? You did better! Your IQ improved! See how that auditing worked on you! It’s proof!

      Those nagging little thoughts such as, “Ya but I remembered half the answers the second time I took the test when the first time I had to think about it and work it out”, well, just shove those down and out of sight. Nope, not thinking about that…

    • Jeff permalink*
      May 26, 2010 5:16 pm

      There are a lot of fascinating anecdotal stories about past lives. Ian Stephenson did a compilation of these. Interestingly, none of these come from Scientologists to my knowledge.

    • sherrymk permalink
      May 26, 2010 5:56 pm

      Re: IQ tests. If one’s IQ actually increases proportional to the amount of auditing one has had, I should have an IQ of about 500, or maybe 1000 by now.

      • lunamoth permalink
        May 26, 2010 9:35 pm

        This reminds me of an amusing experience I had with a certain couple of services provided by CCI.

        My intial IQ test, before doing service #1 was “A.”

        AFTER completing service #1, it was “A minus 5 points.”

        Whoops.

        After service #2, it was “A-8 points.”

        Hey, wait a minute!!

        I said something to one of the HGC staff about this (wouldn’t YOU?). I was told that
        I was now, after benefiting from those particular two services, less “glib.” So my current score was reflecting my true IQ.

        WTF???

        Talk about making your own statistics, manipulating facts and ignoring results that don’t fit your paradigm : Scientology raises your IQ, so if your IQ goes down, it’s not scientology’s fault – it’s yours! You were glib!!

        As a side-note, I truly believe that getting out of scientology has completely remedied the IQ problem. I can just feel it, I am SO much smarter now! LOL!

  6. Martin Ruston permalink
    May 25, 2010 10:19 am

    It’s an interesting journey – from total unwavering certainty in our spirituality to agnostic atheism!! That was my journey. I left scio in the 1982 exodus and became involved heavily with the then independent movement. Then after some months, maybe a years or so I drifted away from that.

    Some many years later I awoke to find myself seriously looking at what I DID know. In reality it was very little. Prior to that I did have many beliefs.

    I sort of had to do some false data stripping. 30 years later I still find false data to strip!

    What I do KNOW is that there is no data to indicate that we are indeed spiritual beings, no life after death or anything remotely to indicate it. This realisation was harder on me than leaving scio all those years earlier, and took some time to adjust.

    I am willing to change back if any data allows me to do so.

    Belief is a very powerful thing. As you so lucidly say it takes getting your head around. If you don’t you will just have to join the “Flat Earth Society”!

    Very few 1950’s beliefs have much place in this century. Very few ideas of LRH hold water – certainly OT3 doesn’t and is provably untrue. And yes I did up to OT4 at St Hill.

    The notion that “what is true for you” can be very dangerous. I expect a brain surgeon to be competent at his job. I expect a carpenter to be able to cut wood and a car mechanic to repair cars. Just because a person believes him/her self to be something doesn’t make it true and can have a very damaging consequence.

    By the way John McMaster could make anyone feel giddy! I saw him “float” a whole auditorium in the late 60’s. I met him again mid 80’s and he was a sick alcoholic. Very very sad.

    regards
    Martin

  7. Synthia permalink
    May 25, 2010 11:20 am

    Great topic. This “knowingness” concept, misunderstood, can degenerate into something very convoluted.

    For example, I used to work for an original OT8 in her home improvement business. She had a stable datum that if it was difficult to find the person’s house on the way to the estimate that the person would be a jerk or something would go wrong with the job later should the estimate be accepted.

    She had this “knowingness” about the kind of people who would “put out flows” that would make her have a difficult time getting to her estimate! This is where knowingness goes full circle and becomes SUPERSTITION.

    • Marta permalink
      May 25, 2010 5:34 pm

      Good grief!

    • sherrymk permalink
      May 25, 2010 7:46 pm

      yup..that’s what I’m talkin’ bout, Synthia.

  8. Curious permalink
    May 25, 2010 12:48 pm

    Jeff

    I’m curious as to why you believe you are an immortal being…

    Given that you have no evidence for that, it is simply blind faith as you say.

    Is it a hangover from Scientology beliefs, or have you always had that belief?

    Over time I have shed all my “beliefs”, including immortality.

    It has left me with a desire to experience life as it is, and I have to say it is amazingly liberating. For me, God, heaven, hell, immortality is all the same as fairies at the bottom of the garden.

    I went through a period of doubt as it left me wondering what the heck life is for.

    Then I realised it doesn’t necessarily have to be “for” anything.

    I don’t know why I’m here. The best available evidence points to the evolutionary process. If that changes I will change with it.

    Either way I’m very happy with life, and given that I suspect it’s the only one I’m ever going to get I’m trying to live it to the full.

    Cheers.

    • Jeff permalink*
      May 25, 2010 4:58 pm

      I’ve had that belief my whole life. It just seemed to be true to me. And it was nice to think that it could be true. One of the things that attracted me to Scientology was the idea that they could “prove” it. They couldn’t, but at least I got a lot of agreement with my belief. But now I don’t confuse my beliefs with knowledge.

      • Fidelio permalink
        May 25, 2010 5:44 pm

        Same with me, I got even stuck in that win to be so strongly agreed with and acknowledged what I meant to know. As for me, I am still disentangling those three and your article is very helpful as a guideline for differentiation.

      • May 26, 2010 2:04 pm

        I have examined in the past this idea that we are ‘immortal’, and unfortunately, I had to reject it. Very roughly, it went like this: If we postulate that humans have a ‘spirit’, distinct from the materialistic body, this makes us “immortal beings”. From there, however, I couldn’t find any good reason to exclude animals from also having a ‘spirit’. Now, while it might be not too difficult to imagine high order animals (mammals, birds, etc.) could be host to a ‘spirit’, this become a problem when we consider *all* life forms. At which point a life form, or a complex molecule exhibiting basic life characteristics can be said of being devoid of a ‘spirit’? Are viruses or prions also host to a ‘spirit’? If not, why not? How about single cell organisms? Choosing where to draw the line is a very subjective exercise, since one can see a virtual continuous lineage from the most basic life form to the most complex. This, along with many other considerations, made me reject the idea of humans being immortal. Like for most people though, the idea of “the end of me” is not a pleasant one, but I am just one of those who are unable to believe in something just because it would makes me feel better.

        “Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It’s the transition that’s troublesome.” — Isaac Asimov

    • lunamoth permalink
      May 25, 2010 5:06 pm

      “Given that you have no evidence for that, it is simply blind faith as you say.”

      I would just like to point out that there is a big difference between evidence of something and proof of it.

      What makes the existence of the spirit evident to me, may not do so for you, and only you can say what effectively “proves” it’s existence to you, as only I can say what proves it me. I may require more or less “proof” than you. You may disagree with how much or how little proof I require (and vice versa).

      The point is that it is a great deal more subjective than science (the current religion of the modern technological age) would have you believe, and much LESS subjective than scientology would have you believe.

      • Just Me permalink
        May 25, 2010 6:18 pm

        Ah, yes, Lunamoth — that’s the big sticking point: What constitutes proof?

        Getting us all to back away from our precious rules and models and backward-arguing conclusions is tough enough. But even if we could get past all that, how will we ever agree to define and measure proof?

        So many human enterprises have crashed against this proof rock (Prufrock, get it?): science, law and politics, not to mention war, diplomacy and espionage, as well as history, literature and movies made by Oliver Stone.

        In fact, I think that because proof is such a toughie the policy of “what’s true for you is true for you” is such a useful fall-back–and I don’t mean just inside the Church or Scientology. Eventually we all must agree to disagree, otherwise we would try to kill each other in the name of Truth.

        On a related note, I don’t find the middle path all that comfortable a place. The left and the right both revile you for not making a stand. Plus, you often get hit by the arrows they fling against each other. It takes guts to be a moderate.

        Just Me

      • Jeff permalink*
        May 26, 2010 5:23 pm

        For me it helps to differentiate between gnosis type of knowledge, that is, inner spiritual revelations, and knowledge of the physical universe. Gnosis cannot be proved or disproved, it’s simply one’s inner realizations or “cognitions” as we used to say. If it’s “true for you” then it’s true and all that. That comes under the heading of one’s beliefs. And no matter how “certain” one is about these things, they are still beliefs.

        Knowledge about the physical universe, the law of gravity, the behavior of energy, biology, etc., are testable and provable in the scientific sense.

    • Aeolus permalink
      May 25, 2010 9:40 pm

      Perhaps this doesn’t need to be said, but there is nothing inherently wrong with belief, or faith. A friend of mine who owns a successful company once said that being a good CEO is the art of making mostly correct decisions, acting on too little information. In other words, you must act on belief rather than proof, and you must have faith in your gut impulses. Probably not a bad recipe for a productive life, either. Sometimes incorrect decisions can make us lose faith in ourselves and we become less causative, not because we’ve made mistakes, which everybody does, but because we now require more proof before we can act.

      Of course this doesn’t justify blind faith, where we adopt a belief and never examine it again, or worse, hold on with certainty when all the evidence is pointing the other way. If you can still believe that Scientology will Clear the Planet under the leadership of David Miscavige, once you know that he abuses people, squirrels the tech and squanders money on himself while the social betterment activities only get lip service, and that the staff obeys his every whim as Command Intention, well, that’s just stupid.

      Now, can you reject Miscavige and all the BS the church has run on us, and still believe in past lives and immortality? I do. My own recall on past lives may be subjective but it feels quite real to me, and there is plenty of other evidence to back up my feelings. Just recently Fox News did a feature on a boy who remembered his experience as a Navy pilot in WWII with very convincing details, much to the astonishment of his parents. He even located the woman who had been his sister in that life, and told her things only the two of them had known. There are many such examples, in almost every culture, and most young children will also give you clues of where they’ve been, if you pay attention.

      So, until I encounter more compelling evidence indicating otherwise, I believe in past lives. And I believe that faith can be a very useful thing, perhaps even necessary for a successful life. Blind faith, not so much.

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 1:14 am

        Well said.

    • May 26, 2010 11:26 am

      There’s an immortal existence. And we are part of it (having been misled for ages to think about ourselves that we are something special and separate from overall).

  9. Martin permalink
    May 25, 2010 12:50 pm

    There seemed to be 2 conflicting versions of the same idea in CofS. One was that if it’s true for you then it’s true (knowledge). The other was if LRH wrote/said it, it’s true – period. LRH may never have said that, but that was always the unspoken accepted “truth”. If it was LRH it was gospel, since LRH was the Messiah. (If he didn’t say it explicitly it was certainly implied in books like Hymn of Asia). LRH is not the Messiah (he’s a very naughty boy, ref: Life of Brian).

    I got into serious ethics trouble once for questioning the stat push, Thursday 2pm weekly nightmare because it seemed to take all attention away from the future. If all your efforts were in the direction of getting the Student Points up by 2pm Thursday, how could you plan for the future? I also disagreed with his statement in Marketing Series 17 that Earth is a “vastly underpopulated planet”. But since LRH said it, I had to make it “true” for me. This is surely the crunch point where a good worthy subject becomes a cult.

    • Martin permalink
      May 25, 2010 5:37 pm

      In case the – very, very funny – reference was lost on anyone:

  10. Aeolus permalink
    May 25, 2010 1:57 pm

    Great post, Jeff! There is nothing wrong with certainty of course, if one is willing to continue examining reality and give up a belief that no longer holds true. What I’ve seen in Scientology is that one is gradually nudged to rely more on knowingness and less on obnosis until at some point, you can tell the person that black is white and they will swear it’s true.

    It happens to a lesser degree outside of the Church too. The history of science is replete with one set of certainties being replaced by another, and the new set of certainties is always resisted for a while. It’s in our nature, I think, that once we have accepted something as true, we not only stop looking but actually reject facts that don’t fit, which then don’t get entered into the equation. The train has left the station, but we’re still on the platform holding on to our ticket with firm conviction.

    • Another Layer permalink
      May 26, 2010 6:16 am

      “It’s in our nature, I think, that once we have accepted something as true, we not only stop looking but actually reject facts that don’t fit, which then don’t get entered into the equation. The train has left the station, but we’re still on the platform holding on to our ticket with firm conviction.”

      Beautiful observation! I’d noticed this cycle in life long before Scientology; once in, I was initially surprised that Scientologists didn’t seem to notice it as well … until of couse I began to follow suit and became another passenger on the platform! By the late 70’s that element of spirited discourse had disappeared and was gradually being replaced by “faith” of a sort. In retrospect, as it was happening, the shift was helped along by scores of tiny compromises. I just never thought I’d have to be vigilant about my “church.”

  11. Kat permalink
    May 25, 2010 3:04 pm

    Jeff,
    Your website is my favorite as far as containing actual usable material that makes sense. This article is another example of just that. Logic and reason. No garbage or clutter. Great stuff! Thanks for keeping at it.

  12. May 25, 2010 3:31 pm

    Very insightful post jeff…. blind faith indeed! Although this form of blind faith has a dark underbelly with deadly intentions.

    • May 25, 2010 6:09 pm

      I can tell you there’s lots of evidence regarding reincarnation and exteriorization. Psychiatrist Ian Stevenson studied lots of reincarnation cases and came to some interesting conclusions, even Carl Sagan found them interesting despite he did not believe in reincarnation.

      I know a reliable man who claimed he exteriorized some time after doing L11 etc. Perhaps these aren’t scientifically proven as of now but perhaps the time is not ready for that yet?

      Blind faith? I personally have no interest in blind faith and look for real evidence, like stories from reliable people. And some of it, together with my own experiences, actually support Scientology and its ideas. LRH exagerrated some things yes and perhaps even added some wild stuff (acceptable truths, i.e. lies) but there’s also a whole lot of truth in Scientology.

      I guess it’s up to us to verifiy much of his claims and find out what is true and what is not.

  13. Just Me permalink
    May 25, 2010 4:37 pm

    I have a sister who talks with God. Regularly. She and He discuss stuff I don’t think God ought to be bothered with. Mostly he just tells her she’s right.

    When she shares her opinions on topics she and God have discussed (and apparently they cover pretty much everything), there’s little one can do but listen and nod. God’s opinions are pretty much conversation-stoppers.

    I used to tell her God tells me different things than he tells her, but she knows I’m lying since God and I aren’t BFFs like they are.

    Still, I have to admit that God is an efficient solution to her problems, a permanent lifeline in her Game of Life. If things turn out well, then God was right. If things turns out poorly, then the suppressive Devil and his suppressive followers and their evil counter intentions won the day.

    Me? I just muddle along, relying on my imperfect talents, inconsistent discipline, life’s messy lessons, and bloody good luck. On balance, I think my life has worked out better than hers, but she probably also thinks she’s the winner in this sibling competition.

    I’m never going to convince her of anything, unless she and God happen to agree with it. And all these years later, I’ve come maybe two millimeters closer to considering seriously any of her opinions on subjects that are important to me.

    But in the end, what difference do our differences really make? We didn’t start out with the same gifts or the same inclinations. Neither of us would or could have ever chosen the other’s path. We were “meant” to do what we’re now doing and have been doing for a long, long time.

    The best I can hope for – and it really is a nice thing to hope for – is that we can lay our differences aside and just love each other and wish the best for each other and recognize that this “I’m wiser than you are” game is just (choose your model) ego, maya, bullshit.

    My goal for us is that before we die we stop judging each other. It’s a big goal.

    Just Me

    • lunamoth permalink
      May 25, 2010 5:10 pm

      Just Me

      I absolutely LOVED this.

      lunamoth

    • Marta permalink
      May 25, 2010 5:43 pm

      Just Me

      Very nice! I share your hopes. And starting with my own judging behaviors, spotting them and releasing those static positions, working to replace them with tolerance and acceptance.

      Marta

    • May 26, 2010 1:57 am

      Just me,

      Don’t you love growing a bit wiser, when the trivia reveals itself to be trivia, and you can look at someone with a completely different mindset and embrace them as valuable for what they are and for what they see?

      Michael

  14. May 25, 2010 4:44 pm

    Jeff,

    Interesting one you’ve written here.

    You no-doubt read my recent Q and A post on the Houchin’s article regarding my own spirituality, and the subsequent informative and helpful responses to it from others on this site.

    What those responses did was put me into a more relaxed state regarding my immortality. And I’m hoping it did the same for others who read these threads and have their own Q and A about their spiritual nature. (that was part of why I asked in the first place….to get answers for others who might be struggling, too).

    One thing I know from auditing is that when I feel I’m F/Ning, I usually am. And it occurs when I hit something that unscrambles a lie. Truth “feels” good.

    When I look at immortality, it feels good. Feels like truth. It’s relaxed.

    When I look at brain cells as the highest achievement for us…….well, it doesn’t quite work for me. Feels sticky. Weird. Unhappy and untrue. It feels kind of like sitting in on a fund-raising slaughter for MEST. You just know deep down that it’s bullshit.

    So, I’m learning to go with what feels right, neat and clean in my deepest self. The self that seems to be logical and sane despite what’s going on in the physical plane.

    This might not be an exact science I’m using, but it’s working for now. I also plan to get more auditing/training in this life, when ready. Just not in the cult.

    IO

  15. Biga Watts permalink
    May 25, 2010 5:14 pm

    We probably all know people like Just Me’s sister. At times, I’ve envied people like that. Seems to make life so simple — it’s all up to God. But as it goes, I don’t like using crutches. I find them uncomfortable and as long as my legs are working, I’d rather stand on my own two feet. I believe this is what we are experiencing with the churchies. For them, the crutches are more comfortable than standing without them, at least for now. At some point, when the crutches become too uncomfortable, they may be ready to walk. For now, they are still “crutchees”.

  16. Its me again permalink
    May 25, 2010 5:29 pm

    I have observed that everyone is on the Bridge somewhere, look at the very very bottom of the Grade Chart. When someone is not even up to wanting to know anything different than what they know, they are not ready to get onto the Bridge where Scientology takes over. I have been married for 23 years to a Grad V C/S and we are have built a great life together and are great partners, but no one in my family is in Scientology. When I first came in, I brought my family members into look at it, but they just were not were I was. Since we are a BIG tight Italian family and love each very much, we respect each other believes and do not evaluate what each believes as being right or wrong. We stay happy in our group. I have learned a long time ago to grant a person beingness in regards to what he want to believe.

    Now Jeff brings up some interesting points. How is one certain? How does one know? Well, I can only tell you what I am certain about and why I think others have LOST their own certainty. Please remember, this is only my viewpoint and I don’t mean to evaluate for anybody.

    Years before I even heard of Scientology, I recalled some of my past lifes with very clear recall. Last life time, I know my name was Joe Mahony and I was married to Mary. I had two daughters and I lived in New Jersey. My favorite item in my house was my Grandfather Clock, it was beautiful. I was an accountant and mostly walked to work. I came here from a farm in Ireland with my parents when I was a teenager. I died under one of those breathing tents at age 68 with my wife sitting next to me. The hospital room had white tile with black trim. My certainty of my past lifes was as certain to me has this life. No one believed me, but I didn’t care. I was certain of it. I had no interest in proofing this to myself by going back there to verify it, to me, it would of been like I had to verify this Life Time.

    When my daughter was 3 years old, we were taking a shower together and I decided to ask her,”where were you before you knew me” with no comm lag she said, in an ambulance. I thought, Jesus Christ, what the hell do I do now. So I just said Ok, and washed her hair.

    When you are certain, no one can invalidate, evaluate, or tell you otherwise. You are just certain.

    Now the OT Levels. Well, I am not going to say too much, because it can become very unreal to others and it is a very personal thing for each of us. All this life time I have had experience with what is on the upper OT Levels. I knew something was there and I could actually ,with these body eyes, see what was there at times. When I was small, it scared me has I grew up and became more analytical, I tried to ignore it, but still, this shit bothered me on and off this lifetime and this is something I would never tell anyone because it was just too strange even for me. Even going up the Bridge on the auditing side, there was things I ran that I was “certain” of and then other things I kind of” knew” happened, but wasn’t certain. When my granddaugher was 4 years old she started telling me things that were pretty similar to what I experienced as a child and she had concerns and wanted to know what to do about it. Her mother, not a Scientologist, thought it was just her imagination and that didn’t indicate to her, so she turned to me. All I could tell her was to say “shut up”. When she did that she told me it was better. Now I don’t know if that was the correct thing to do, but I had to give her something to try. Shit like that can drive you crazy if you don’t know what it is.

    When I did OT V, I was certain that is what I came into Scientology to do. It was my item that I wanted to handle…I wanted to know what the hell was going on and because of my experience with it for so long, it totally indicated to me and I am certain of what it is. Just reading the LRH data before each step gave me the certainty I never had before in auditing people or being audited. It even answer some of the questions on parts of the tech that I really never had certainty on, it all became so clear. To try to explain it, it was like I was reading something I already knew, but forgot about… I would think, Oh yeah, I knew that.

    This has been a pretty key-out life time and so was my last. What trigger my memories and perceptions? I can’t say. All I can come up with is that these two life times let me key out a bit so my natural awareness kicked in.

    In talking to people that have done the upper OT levels, some have had a similar experience has I did, some did not. Like I said before, this is a very personal thing.

    Now this is were it gets hard for me because I try not to give anyone a wrong WHY, especially an OT. Someone trying to give me a wrong Why or Indication is up there with one of the worse things to try and do to me. The handling of an OT is a very touchy thing. Some people in the SO working with OT’s totally understand this and deals with OT’s as they should be dealt with… a lot of ARC and respect and I appreciate these SO members who treats OT’s as they would want to be treated themselves . OT’s should not be evaluated for, no one should tell them what to think about their case, give them any indication that their decisions are wrong, tell them that their comm lag is too long, or whatever bullshit someone has to come up with to get money or whatever motivation they have for doing so. This shouldn’t be done to anyone, but especially a pre- OT doing their Levels, that buffer is gone and the OT needs to be handled very respectfully. Unfortunately you have people dealing with OT’s who think that it is ok to tell an OT how to think, because this is how they are treated themselves. Some A=A=A stuff going on.

    The pre-OT has shit going on that could drive one crazy if the Level isn’t being done correctly or the OT is being messed with. It isn’t over until the Fat Lady sings and only the person knows when their case is under their own control.

    One never gets the full ability of the OT Levels with some of the stuff I hear going on. The Sec Checks alone with the “new” definition of F/N is a cash cow. Why a sec check every 6 months, especially one that is over-run because someone doesn’t understand the definition of a comma in The Book of E-Meter Drills and then disregards the HCOB were Ron gives the correct definition of an F/N and were Ron says that is the only definition? If the person has done something and needs a sec check, ok, then it is for the benefit of the OT. If not, why? This is a wrong indication to an OT and invalidates the shit out of him. How can anyone get to be Cause of Life with all the out-tech going on. An OT knows if he or she is doing well and if they are, they should never be messed with, yet they are not allowed to make that decision for themselves. How can you get be OT when you originate “I am doing great” and then forced into a sec check? The C/S should know if the pc needs a sec check or not and should never c/s for a sec check unless needed. And here is a another technical out-point, after a sec check if the auditor had done an error in the session, the OT goes right back into the sec check again…..Wait a minute! What happened to the correction on the auditor? Isn’t the auditor suppose to be corrected before taking his pc back in? What the hell!

    Again, this was not meant to invalidate anyone’s wins. There still were wins to have for most and those can never be taken away. The Church is not crazy enough to totally change everything were there are no wins. But can you imagine how much less time it could of been and how many more wins could of been had for everyone?

    If I wasn’t certain about this Life Time, I would think I entered the Twilight Zone. This is not the Tech that I studied and had so much certainly on.

    “That’s me in the corner
    That’s me in the spot light losing my religion”

    by REM

    • Jeff permalink*
      May 25, 2010 6:06 pm

      Thanks, Its Me. You’ve given many examples here of what I’m talking about – individual spiritual “gnosis,” one’s own certainties and beliefs.

      I think the error is taking one’s own “certainties” and saying that these are universal, immutable truths for all of mankind. What is true for you is not true for everyone. You may believe that “everyone is somewhere on the Scientology Bridge,” but that does not make it factual. Only a tiny fraction of the planetary population has ever had any involvement with Scientology at all.

      A Christian may believe that everyone is really a Christian, they just have not found the way yet, but are following “false gods.” A Buddhist may believe that everyone is really a Buddhist at heart and just have to find the right path. A Muslim may think that his religion is the only road to salvation and all others are infidels. These things are beliefs.

      Everyone has their own path, their own beliefs, their own “knowingnesses.” I think that people with strong beliefs and “certainties” need to learn some humility in dealing with others and in communicating about their subject and realize that their particular belief system is not “the only way.”

      • Martin permalink
        May 25, 2010 6:35 pm

        George Bernard Shaw once said, “There is only one religion,though there are a hundred versions of it.”

      • Its me again permalink
        May 25, 2010 9:21 pm

        Jeff,

        My belief is that everyone is on the Bridge somewhere. Not the actual Bridge that you pay for, but the little tiny writing below it. This is only my believe, I am not certain that is true, it only makes some sense to me.

        I have nothing on what anyone wants to believe. If you want to get to Heaven, then you would follow the path of those who have the same viewpoint as you and the promise of the road there. This is usually based on one’s learning or wanting salvation. Some people die and see a light at the end of a tunnel, who is anybody else to say different. This is what is true for them, so be it. Most of my family is on that path and I never try to talk them out of it.

        If you only want to live a good life, then you would follow those who have that same viewpoint and follow that path.

        Sorry, I don’t do humility. Everyone here seems to voice there options without humility, so what? You really think people need to be humble to each other?

        My experiences and recalls before Scientology lead me on a path to find out why I have lived before and why I keep coming back. So my search led me to Scientology. Yes, I did find answers that made perfect sense to me. If people don’t believe in past lifes, who is it for me to tell them otherwise? All I am trying to say is that I, me , myself, have had many past lifes and I recall most of them very well, this I am certain of and no one else can tell me different, and it had nothing to do with Scientology it only led me there.

        I am sure I am not the only one who came into Scientology looking for the same answers I was looking for. I will defend the tech as long as I can for others who are looking for the same answers I was. You don’t have to go into a CofS to get the tech.

        My only concern now is that all of the people who knew the truth and how to apply the real tech have been Declared and now a new line of young indoctrinated members are taking their place. This is not easy for people like me to confront. I have stopped on the Bridge because of the out-tech…now what do I do, give into the fact that I will be stuck in this cycle forever? This was the path that I choose for the reason’s I have stated above. I don’t know why anyone else on this site choose this path at one time, maybe the same, maybe different.

        Ron once said, that Scientology was a way out, maybe not the only way out, but it is all we have right now. (this is not verbatim). It just seems easier to me to fix it than to start looking again. I am looking for a way out, I am not sure what you are looking for, you have never told me. So of course if our goals are different, we would have different paths to follow.

        I have been all over the Tone Scale since I found your site over a month ago, you emailed me and told me to look at other different sites, remember me? So I looked.. I have been in apathy, I’ve cried, been pissed off , back to Boredom, Mild Interest and Strong Interest, back to crying may times in my search.

        This may not be real to you or others but I have to look at the fact that DM and whoever is with him on this has purposely block the road out for those of us who want out. I cannot believe that all this stuff with the SO members, all the Declares, supposed lost tech, alter tech was just a big MU.

        Don’t feel you have to post my comments if you feel it enturbulates other’s on your site. Seriously, I understand and I have nothing on you not wanting to. Maybe you could refer me to a site were people might have the same viewpoints as me and want to take the Church back? No hard feelings…really.

      • May 26, 2010 2:13 am

        It’s me,

        Hey, I liked reading your comments. The advantage of these sites is in the provocation–provoking one to think. All of these different viewpoints offer a means of discovering understanding that was not available when we were expected to study just one viewpoint and not just study but accept that viewpoint as infallible.

        Michael

      • May 26, 2010 2:20 pm

        My experience is that any Budhist,Christ, Muslim that really undestood their religion never were preaching that their religion was the “only path” but had deep respects and understandings for the the religious beliefs of others ake eand mostly think that we are all speaking about the same thing.

        It’s only people,with not too high IQ, that take every text of their religion word for word which are making all this mess.
        Same in Scientology, Budhism etc…
        Fanatism is a symptom of taking things word by word. No conceptual understanding.
        The problem of mankind has always been the education of mankind.
        The greeks already knew it.
        Look at those Scientologists that are so foolish in Management or Scientologists that are behaving funny in their lifes.
        What most of them have in common is no real education and mainly a childhood with no real family, where love and respect is teached.
        Every human being should have the right to be fully educated in History, Philosophy, Religios, Human Rights, Science and as soon we achieve that there will be peace.
        And imagine the people getting cleared !
        Education and training is per LRH also processing and helps people to disenturbulate.

        IMHO

        LO

    • sherrymk permalink
      May 25, 2010 8:31 pm

      It’s Me,

      I, like you, never doubted, even before I started into Scientology, that I had lived before. In fact, that’s the hook that pulled me along into Scientology. I still don’t have any doubts, but also, I simply don’t care. It makes not one ounce of difference if I was this person or that person or I did this or that in another lifetime. It’s kind of like spending the present lifetime discovering the past, at the sacrifice of just living the one you’re in. Really, what does it matter when you look at the broad “scheme of things”.

      I now prefer to just experience TODAY…all it’s wonders, all it’s people, all it’s joys and griefs. I find that it’s one of those sort of contradictions in Scientology that to “be in present time” one has to get rid of all the past messes. I’m not sure I agree with that 100%. What, for the most part, I experienced was TRYING to be in present time, thinking I was, but always being pulled into the past by the auditing. I mean, auditing is basically, especially the OT levels, all based on the past. And it’s LRH’s evaluation of what that past consisted of..all thru the OT levels. It’s “leap of faith” all the way up.

      You did OTV which for you answered lots of questions or validated what you considered to be true.. First you read the indocs which basically are tons of evaluations on what your case consists of. Once “indoctrinated”, the “leap of faith” has to be there in order to run the stuff. For you, it was real. For me? Not. But only in retrospect. On retrospect and having done OTVlll, which, as I’ve stated before, knocks ALL your previous auditing’s “certainties” about who you “were” from under you, what was the point of running all that crap for years and years, in an attempt to “know who I really am”?

      And I make a point here that in actuality, at the point of starting OTVlll, I could have cared less about exploring (once again) whether or not I was this person or that person. Not in the slightest bit interested. And I can just about guarentee that anyone that’s finished OTVll, could care less about revisiting past identities. We were ready for some real fun “OT” stuff…

      You make a number of very significant points on the handling of OTs. It’s unfortunate that the only point of reference I have is all the out tech and mishandlings and horrendous invals and evals and attempts to limit my self determinism that existed. Perhaps it could have been a very different result had these factors not been present. Hard to tell. But even so, even without all the additives, the “true factual data” that Hubbard requires you take on faith would not change.

      Jus’ sayin’

      • Its me again permalink
        May 25, 2010 10:00 pm

        Thanks Sherry for the comm…I totally understand what you are saying. I am glad you are happy and have come up with what you want to do in life.

        Like I said before, I had already experienced some of that OT stuff previously, way before Scientology, so it was real to me when I reached OT V. I, myself didn’t have to have a leap of faith but I can see how that could be for others. The materials that I read was just the tech I already studied but looking at it from a total different view point. What it did for me was give me a new view point on what I already studied in training and see it from a different dynamic.

        From OT V, I pretty much figured out OT VII and from an auditor’s point of view, I already realized what happened in my previous auditing. Also from an auditor’s point of view, I don’t believe that ALL of past auditing had to do with what we are talking about on NOTs. I too wouldn’t want to have to revisit what I already handled…If you handled it, it was handled. I hope you follow, I really don’t like to talk about it as it is unreal to some.

        I too don’t care who I was or what happened in other lives. My quest was to find out why I kept coming back and how to stop that cycle. That is what my goal was and still is.

        I am sorry you were handled badly as an OT. I have meet a lot of really good caring SO members in the AO’s, but then there are the few that really should be in the back room sweeping the floor or something.

        Enjoy your joys and your griefs and all the things life is made of. It is really good to comm with you.

        All the best to you.

      • sherrymk permalink
        May 25, 2010 11:16 pm

        It’s good to be in comm with you too It’sMe.

        This is food for thought that you mentioned. “My quest was to find out why I kept coming back and how to stop that cycle. That is what my goal was and still is.” My question to you is: why or what brought you to the conclusion that you should “stop the cycle”? Just curious. And also another question: Of what significance and assistance to you personally would be the finding out of “why I kept coming back?”. Also, just curious. A point of discussion.

        Funny thing is that in the last few months, and I might have mentioned this on prior postings on this blog, but I’ve come to speculate that perhaps the “reason” we keep “coming back” is just someone’s idea of a big joke, starting with placing a bunch of humans around these parts whose entire existence is spent “wondering what I’m dong here” “what is my purpose” and “who am I”. If it was me positioning myself “outside” it all and watching the activities of humans in constant questioning as mentioned above, it would bring a big chuckle to my face. Quite an entertaining movie….

        Following, perhaps the whole “solution” to the “cycle of life and death” is simply: stop wondering about it all and just get on with living.

        For what it’s worth…my ten cent philosophy.

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 12:07 am

        I like your movie…LOL.. Kind of like the Twilight Zone when the humans kept riding the same train to the same place and they actually were in a big game with some extremely large alien kid playing with them as toys. I think the kid’s father brought them from earth for the kid to play with.

        Why I want to know ? I want to live under my own self determinism. If it was my own game to live and keep coming back, that would be fine, but I rather just live forever doing what I want and playing the games I want. If I want a body here on Earth, it would be my own game. If I wanted to go to another Universe with no bodies, I could do that also. I don’t like this game anymore of dying and picking up a new body, and I really don’t like being a baby.

        Oh and you are right, this is a big joke and I don’t like the joke anymore.

        This doesn’t consume all my life. This is why I have gone in and out of the Church over the past 25 years. I like to live on all my dynamics and the Church prefers you live only on the 3rd. This is why I don’t say who I am, I live way to close to the Base. I don’t need to be handling any shit on my lines. We have 3 businesses, 2 grand kids and a big family…a lot to keep me busy and happy.

        Thanks again for the up tone com

      • May 26, 2010 12:00 pm

        Its me again,
        Thank you very much for staying here and in a good OPEN comm. It’s worth more than few peanuts. 😉
        Sorry for having come down on you in previous post. That fact was maddening to me. And just I couldn’t take any explanations from the head of “citizen commision of HUMAN RIGHTS” to do such a thing to a person. I was mad because, I’m sure, it was nothing else in her mind but “it’s for the good of Scientology”.

        Now I see that you are into the open for real… not to troll and make us (those seeking one’s own truth) look back at LRH’s reference to see how wrong we/others were (not having used LRH).

        You are really here. You are openly saying what you have on your mind. And I DO appreciate that. I’ve appreciated such more than anything else throughout my life (being of the same type of person).

        You and I see here (on Jeff’s blog) the most diverse thoughts exchange than anywhere in or out of Scientology about Scientology and the subjects it has touched in our lives.

        BTW, I’m not anti-scientology. I’m here just to help people see things right, and learn from them to see things right. It’s not a new movement (right, Jeff?)
        There is also Marty’s blog which is more mild to those who wants to reach spiritual freedom thru scientology: markrathbum.wordpress.com

        Here we are all out to get to the bottom of this thing called scientology (at least me and several others). We are not after ruining it and doing harm to it. We are after getting to see the world in simple terms, and what our truth is REALLY. It seems to me that everyone has to have his own (and not be shot down for having the one that’s not a mainstream).

        I’ll add to this this quote from LRH which is very good to my “I”:
        “Once upon a time there was a thetan. And he was a happy little thetan and the world was simple thing. It was all very, very simple. And then one day somebody told him he was simple. And ever since that time he’s been trying to prove that he is not. And that is the history of the universe, the human race…” – LRH

        Its me again, I’d like you to keep exploring along with us those things we haven’t figured out yet. You are in my “desirable ones” list. 😉

    • May 26, 2010 12:16 pm

      Ooops! Did a typo above. It should be http://markrathbun.wordpress.com/
      Also, Freezone.org.
      If you want to get up to the top OT level fast and for MUCH LESS money, and without any suppression on your lines, those above are the sites and things worth checking out IRL.

      P.S. I believe there is no problem to become “full OT” in this society and at this time. There are services offered in and outside the Church on any continent. Some are even Class XIIs
      If you want it, you can get it with ease (that has never previously before been available).

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 7:58 pm

        Thanks VaD, I was certain that we could come up with at least one thing we could agree on, that is a good first step.

        Thanks for you com.

  17. lunamoth permalink
    May 25, 2010 5:51 pm

    Jeff,

    Wonderful post today. I’ve already read it twice and may have to read
    it a third time before I can comment with any intelligence.
    But it occurred to me after reading it the second time that it’s the
    failure to distinguish between our own certainty, belief and knowledge
    that leads us to be intolerant of the beliefs, certainty and knowingness
    of others (knowledge being something external from us that can
    be shared, knowingness being subjective). So it seems to me that every
    religion has built into it the seeds of intolerance. Yet every (major)
    religion I can think of has compassion as one of it’s central tenants.

    Thought you would enjoy this short piece from the NYTimes, written by a
    Noble Peace Prize winner, on that subject.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/25/opinion/25gyatso.html?emc=eta1

    lunamoth

    • Tyler permalink
      May 26, 2010 4:44 am

      Beautiful article — such an articulate writer. Thanks for the link.

  18. Just Me permalink
    May 25, 2010 6:48 pm

    OK, last comment for a while …

    About a month ago, in an effort to formulate what I observed with the Church of Scientology and the subject of Scientology, I wrote the following. I don’t know if it’s complete or even “true.”

    As the kids say, it’s definitely tl; dr (too long; didn’t read). However, if anyone wishes to do so and comment on it or improve it, please feel free.

    1. THINGS are.

    2. THINGS happen.

    3. We observe THINGS.

    4. Encouraged by life’s hard knocks, we start to observe THINGS more carefully and try to make sense of THINGS.

    5. We notice some THINGS are identical, some are similar, and some are different.

    6. We develop categories, taxonomies and relationships for these THINGS.

    7. We notice THINGS have timing and sequence, i.e., THINGS happen before, after, simultaneously, first, second, third, last, etc.

    8. We notice our survival is tied to our ability to respond to THINGS and to predict future THINGS.

    9. We become obsessed about understanding THINGS and our relationships with THINGS.

    10. Being good at developing tools, we use tools to collect new data about old THINGS and to find new THINGS.

    11. When our understanding of THINGS improves our ability to survive, we call our understanding TRUTH.

    Note: This is where the trouble starts.

    12. TRUTH helps us survive better by bestowing economic, military, political, intellectual, social, sexual, environmental, aesthetic and spiritual benefits.

    13. Motivated by our desire to (a) improve our own and our group’s survival and (b) gain higher status as truth-finders and truth-users, we share our knowledge of TRUTH with others.

    14. Through TRUTH’s exchange and our resulting higher survival, TRUTH acquires its own value.

    15. Because of TRUTH’s value, it attracts stakeholders who invest in it.

    16. TRUTH’s stakeholders, seeking to preserve or enhance their investment, help TRUTH survive by attracting more adherents to TRUTH.

    17. When TRUTH attracts enough followers, it is seen as really, really, really true and really, really valuable.

    Note: Oh boy! More trouble!

    18. Those now relying on TRUTH for their survival become less curious and reduce their observation of THINGS.

    19. Somewhere, sometime, TRUTH fails to help someone survive.

    20. Somewhere, sometime, someone notices that all THINGS observed and all data gathered about THINGS are not fully explained by TRUTH.

    21. One or more people observe that TRUTH is not always true.

    22. Those who are now least rewarded by and most invested in TRUTH look for new data about old THINGS and for new THINGS.

    23. Someone (or a small group) eventually creates a NEW TRUTH that they think better aligns all the data about THINGS.

    24. Those most invested in TRUTH feel threatened by these developments and defend TRUTH.

    25. Some people use NEW TRUTH and find they survive even better than they did when using following TRUTH.

    26. Others, attracted by NEW TRUTH’s successes, also leave TRUTH and start using NEW TRUTH.

    27. Those who were most rewarded by and most invested in TRUTH are the last to try NEW TRUTH.

    28. Eventually, some find NEW TRUTH to be true.

    29. Some find TRUTH to be partially true, and others find TRUTH to be false.

    30. Many people have mixed feelings about whether TRUTH was ever true, just partially true or even false.

    31. Having now followed and invested in TRUTH and/or NEW TRUTH, some people assign values of “good” or “evil” to the two paths.

    Note: And now here comes the author’s gratuitous, self-serving cognition.

    32. However, others view neither TRUTH nor NEW TRUTH as true, false, good or evil and have some big eurekas:

    Eureka #1: Neither TRUTH nor NEW TRUTH is true. Instead, these are WORKABLE MODELS that align and explain the THINGS we have (thus far) observed and collected data about.

    Eureka #2: We should not confuse (a) THINGS, (b) data about THINGS, (c) TRUTH and (d) WORKABLE MODELS.

    Eureka #3: As we build civilizations, we should teach our children to:

    * Use the best WORKABLE MODELS they can find, but not imagine they are
    TRUTH.

    * Accept that we may or may not day discover TRUTH one day, but that we should continue to seek it.

    * Be willing to look for new THINGS and new data about old THINGS so that one day we can build an even better WORKABLE MODEL and elevate our civilization further.

    Note: And they all lived happily ever after. (I wish!)

    Marta could, of course, condense all this into a single pithy paragraph, and we’d all go, “Right on!”

    Just Me

    P.S. Did I mention I wanted to lurk moar?

    • May 25, 2010 7:39 pm

      Just me,

      BRILLIANT!!!

    • Marta permalink
      May 26, 2010 12:06 am

      Just Me – I’ll see what I can do….LOL

    • craig houchin permalink
      May 26, 2010 6:19 am

      Just Me,

      Pithy or not, you have definitely given voice and structure to ideas that have been swimming through my mind recently. Nicely done, and thanks!

  19. May 25, 2010 9:50 pm

    That organisms are so intelligently designed speaks of an intelligent designer.

    That we are aware and that we can know indicates that knowing and awareness are fact.

    That living with faith provides a richer life than living without is simply an observation I’ve made from trying both.

    Not all evidence has equal weight. A detective could measure the victim’s hair after counting each, and use that same approach in compiling a crime book that reached a thousand volumes and never solve the crime because he was too focused on the irrelevant “facts” and not able to determine what was important: the wife was standing there holding the smoking gun.

    The relevant evidence that we are spiritual beings lies in our ability to perceive ourselves as such. We are aware that we are aware and we are aware that we perceive.

    And we give meaning to what we perceive based on our storehouse of meanings available. That Just Me’s sister speaks to God on a daily basis does not refute God or that she is actually speaking to another being or even to herself on a higher level. She is assigning meaning to the experience from the understanding and meaning she has accumulated.

    The experience may be valid; the explanation may not be.

    So, in my experience, one should accept and validate one’s experience and assign those experiences the best meaning, explanation and understanding currently available. But one should also keep in mind that understanding increases. And as understanding increases, we can assign better meaning. We can change.

    Many of us have had wonderful experiences in Scientology. And we assigned those experiences meanings provided by Scientology. Then we left or were kicked out and went on a campaign to understand why and what. We discovered all sorts of things about LRH and about Scientology. And we might have been sufficiently shocked that we invalidated all the wonderful experiences as some sort of delusion or hypnosis or insanity.

    But the experiences were real, we’re just assigning new meanings. Or furthering our understanding and validating those experiences and having even better ones now that we’re free to assign our own meaning.

    You fall in love. You give your heart to someone. Then you break up. You’re in pain and curse the day you met her. “It wasn’t love!” you scream in pain. “Not love at all!” But it was. And your understanding and faith have been shattered. At the time you knew it was love, and latter you knew it wasn’t. Same experience, different meanings assigned.

    Words are not experience. Study Korzybski.

    But that we can play games with words does not refute the underlying truths, realities, and conditions expressed by words. There are conditions and experience and truths that exist with or without words.

    The key is to discover those underlying conditions and concepts without words. Words can conveniently distort. All of the words here have ranges of meaning and a crafty wordsmith can shuffle the deck of meaning and use sleight of mind to dazzle us. Wow! We thought that truth and belief meant one thing, but they actually meant something else! And wow! the hope I had is now being pulled out from behind my ear. Dazzling.

    But words are words. And magic is magic.

    Voltaire, being full of mischief, used to say, “If you would argue with me define your terms.” He understood that words and their meanings could be twisted and manipulated so he forced his opponent to offer even more words and meanings to make that manipulation easier. And another trick was to apply the wrong definition for a word where it didn’t belong to undermine his opponent’s position. By getting his opponent on the defensive, he could attack from many angles, causing concatenations of confusion and making his opponent look ridiculous.

    There is a huge difference between searching for truth and winning an argument. And Voltaire noted this.

    What Jeff writes about is a valid area of exploration. Truth and belief and certainty. I’ve explored them many times. And I find each concept rewarding when correctly assigned. I like to increase my understanding rather than frustrate myself with dead ends. I have no use for how many hairs a victim has and how many were gray.

    That we can have this discussion at all speaks of a grandeur of intelligence and awareness worthy of admiration. And that is relevant. And that is evidence of something.

    Michael

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 1:28 am

      Wow, I am impressed. You write very well and to the point.
      Thanks, that is quite a viewpoint.

  20. Martin Ruston permalink
    May 26, 2010 2:24 am

    We have “believed” in gods and spirits since the dawn of time – when we had no way of rationalising the complexities of life and the universe. It’s now in our DNA!

    As time went by these complexities were explained by science and will continue. However we still have that lingering belief system in us. Besides it’s what we want. As intelligent self aware beings we can’t quite get it that there isn’t more to life.

    I don’t say this to be contentious. Isn’t it better to apply our lives doing something worthwhile to us than to fritter it away on some meaningless activity?

    There is one thing that I have total certainty about:- no one here (or there), not you, nor me, or anyone has any real knowledge regarding the spiritual nature of man. No one has.

    That doesn’t mean we aren’t – it just means there is no knowledge regarding it, just superstitions left over from some previous time. To base our lives around something as unknown as this seems incomprehensible.

    From a person who was a scio zealot I am now a Darwinian. I don’t know if we are spiritual or not but I can see for myself that we are an evolved species. The data is irrefutable.

    By all means have theories, make assumptions, postulate, believe but please don’t confuse these as truth.

    As I said earlier, in this thread, if any evidence for our spirituality surfaces I will be re-evaluating my position. Certainly I would like there to be “more to life than this”!

    Our experiences in scio were real to us, certainly. However there is a lot to know about our mental processes – some known, some yet to be known. The “placebo effect” is one area that seems pertinent to me and “religious effect” another, probably two sides of the same coin. The future holds the answer to all our questions. We are not there yet though.

    I don’t say beliefs are not important. After all they provide us with the energy and drive to go forward and discover new worlds. But the downside is that more beliefs are inconclusive or fail.

    Take care
    Martin R.

    • May 26, 2010 10:30 am

      Martin Ruston,
      RE: “no one here (or there), not you, nor me, or anyone has any real knowledge regarding the spiritual nature of man. No one has.”
      – I do. We are the one.
      You, I, computer in front of you, everything and everybody you and me.
      How do I know that?
      Minimally, we are all (as science proves it) made of the same stuff (nuclei and atoms). Minimally, all humans have always had the same phenomena displayed. Among those are: memory, be it short or “of the whole track”; imagination; insights; intuition, and other cool things that are present in physical objects called “humans”. Those (memory, imaginations…) may or may not be compounded of nuclei or atoms, but are empirically correct.
      It’s not “faith” that you or I have memory. It doesn’t “belong” to ANY system of beliefs. It just IS.
      Can you deny above?
      So, whether we die and come asunder (into nuclei and atoms) or we go into the next life, or we go to Hell or Heaven (which is now more doubtful to me then into the next life), we stay in this Universe. We don’t perish forever. One can sweep dust out of his house but one can’t sweep human out of the Universe.

      About me: do I believe in life after death? – Yeah, sure.
      Do I know it for the fact? – Hell, no!
      So how do I have to live? – Enjoy my current existence, and help others with that. When it comes to death, I will see what is happening after that. I will cross that bridge when I come to it.

      • May 26, 2010 10:38 am

        Forgot to say main thought here:
        “Physical” and “Spiritual” are from the same source (call it “God”, “Big Blow” or any other names).
        We are the one… (Not even “were”, “have been” or “will become”).
        Tyou may call it my opinion or my belief. So be it. The fact is that we are of the same source. To me it’s – we are the one.

    • Aeolus permalink
      May 26, 2010 2:10 pm

      Martin,

      About your assertion that no-one has any real knowledge regarding the spiritual nature of man – years ago, before I got into Scientology, I was exploring potential paths to enlightenment that were more ‘chemical based’. Hey, it was the 60’s, OK? Anyway, on my first real ‘trip’, I found myself floating on the ceiling, looking down at my body, wondering what the f85k was going on. I was in no condition to figure it out at the time, but when I came across the datum that we are spirits and not our bodies, it made total sense.

      Is that proof? No. Is it knowledge? Absolutely, and it’s completely valid for me, and for anyone else who’s willing to accept someone else’s experience as useful information. Will you convince me that I’m a body and not a spirit? Never in a million years.

  21. Its me again permalink
    May 26, 2010 3:14 am

    Jeff, I have a question for you.

    When I first came to your site, I read “How to Leave” and “About”. I got the impression that this was a site about the problems in upper management, info on how the Church went down the toilet and giving information.

    It seems to me that the favor of your site is more anti-Scientology, not all of it, but enough to make me wonder if I had some MU,s on the two articles I mentioned above.

    Do you have some type of purpose for this site? I am getting the feeling I am odd man out here. Not to blame you our anyone on this site, I can have other point of views, but I think maybe when I read those articles, I had the wrong idea of what this site was about.

    Thanks

    • Jeff permalink*
      May 26, 2010 4:23 am

      Interesting take on the blog. I’ve written extensively about why I started the blog and what it’s for, particularly on this post, “Voice of the Silenced.” I don’t consider myself anti-Scientology. I have no objection to the practice of Scientology if done without abusing others. I am against the abuse that goes on in the Church. I also believe in open discussion, which I know some people don’t like. I’d be interested in what you feel is “anti-Scientology” about the blog.

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 5:00 am

        Jeff,

        Thanks for giving me your post “Voice of Silenced” It is not posted on your main page under your list of Blogs and since I have only been looking around on the web for a little over a month, I only read the “About” and “How to Leave”.

        Now, I said it had a flavor (sorry I spelled it wrong before) of anti-Scientology. You have to know what I am talking about and I am not going to give names or examples because what is the point in that? I also said “not all of it,” there are some very good debates and people on your site and I have enjoyed their interaction.

        If I wanted to call up my friends and say, hey, you have got to look at this site to find out what is really happening in the Church, I probably wouldn’t use your site. You are a very good writer, but the comments would be too out gradient for someone still in the Church but wanted to look. I would want to use a site that had just the facts and not so much opinions….facts like the one you wrote about the Portland Org closing, you know, things like that.

        Does this make sense to you?

      • Just Me permalink
        May 26, 2010 11:00 am

        It’s Me Again,

        First, let me say how very much I’m enjoying your posts. It’s fun to hear someone who expresses themselves so well. It’s also fun to hear about someone who’s had so much success on the Bridge and wants more of it.

        My interpretation of Scientology is pretty broad. I don’t view Scientology as my life’s purpose, but as a wide range of very useful tools and perspectives that continue to help me tremendously. I also feel the same way about my formal education, my work experiences, travel, the books I read, and the posts I read here.

        I felt the same way about Scientology when I was on lines at the Church. But in the last 20 years I haven’t communicated much with other Scientologists and thought I was formally done with the subject. However, the last five months of reading this and other blogs have interested me again in Scientology more than I could have ever imagined.

        I find this blog helps me think about and communicate and understand Scientology in ways I didn’t understand when I was younger. To use a Christian church analogy, this blog does not encourage a Southern Baptist Convention version of Scientology, but perhaps an Episcopalian or maybe even Unitarian version of Scientology. I certainly never would have had anything to do with the Southern Baptist version again, ever.

        If pro-Scientology means only that we all sign up to purify the Church and that only those who show up there for roll call can use or explore Scientology, I’m probably not up for that. But if pro-Scientology means that I am now giving myself a new space and time in which to reconsider my relationship with the subject then yes, that works for me. At this point in my life I’m looking for more flexibility, not less.

        This blog is good for my brain and my soul. It encourages a spirit of “knowing how to know.” It’s not so good for my exercise regimen since I spend too much time sitting on my butt staring at a computer screen. However, a little obsession is OK too, in moderation.

        Just Me

      • Jeff permalink*
        May 26, 2010 5:40 pm

        Maybe its just me, but I have never felt that Scientologists needed to be protected from exposure to “entheta” or shielded from open discourse about Scientology. I know the Church tries to tightly control the information flow of Scientologists and keep them away from the wrong sites. That just says to me that the Church does not trust their own members to intelligently handle an open flow of information. It’s like they are afraid that exposure to the slightest challenge to Scientology beliefs will fatally jar their faith. As most Scientologists have spent a considerable amount of money to increase their awareness, their intelligence, their certainty, there is a certain irony to this. All of these gains, they seem to be saying, can be blown away by a negative comment or a sneer. It doesn’t say much about what the Church thinks of their strength of conviction.

        When I left Scientology, all I had for information was OCMB. Now there are a vast array of sites. Some of them are carefully kept sanitized for Scientologists. But I don’t believe in censoring opinions I disagree with, sorry.

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 6:27 pm

        Hey Just Me,

        Thanks for the comm. It is appreciated.

        I would only like more Bridge, if I was “certain” that I was really getting the real Bridge.

        I understand that my experience with Scientology is not the same as others who had to go through..well what some had to go through. I think that all of us in the Church knew something was OUT, especially in the last 10 years, but it was carefully hidden from the public, some of just couldn’t make out exactly what was wrong….until, for me, all the “New, Lost, Tech”, changing the definition of an F/N, telling us what buttons can be used in Ruds…so I started pulling the string and ended up, well the best I can say is Horrified.

        DM may try to make us pre-Golden Age of auditor’s think we really don’t know what we are doing so he can push through his new tech….and that is a pretty good move on his part, because he really know we are the ones who did the training through blood sweat and tears and got it…and anyone who really got it, need to be invalidated or removed.

        Hard to fight someone with an unlimited amount of money at his disposal for attorney’s and all the free man power he has for PR. But it looks like a lot of people are waking up, I hope it won’t be too late.

        So keep feeding your brain and soul and enjoy your obsessions, we can’t just live on the 3rd dynamic….thanks again, me.

    • May 26, 2010 1:55 pm

      It’s Me Again,

      I know that some believe Jeff’s site is anti-Scientology, but I don’t really get that feeling. I think most people who post here have a great appreciation for freedom and truth. Being lied to does not sit well with most of us. And, unlike Marty or Steve, most of us here recognize that LRH was actually the source of much that went wrong with the Church of Scientology; DM is merely a reductio ad absurdum of outpoints already in existence.

      The argument by the Marty and Steve camp is that focusing attention on LRH’s and the pre-DM Church’s outpoints is merely a misguided or suppressive attempt to distract from the real purpose: getting that horrible suppressive DM handled. For them, DM is THE WHY. And they (excuse the generality) are applying the data series and evaluating like crazy to make this argument. And they are very successfully proving with oodles of evidence just how corrupt DM is and how horribly he has abused and altered the subject of Scientology. But data evaluation depends on the evaluator more than the data, and conclusions are often subscriptions to hobby horses.

      And that is what it is. But you can’t really ignore the pre-existing conditions that allowed DM to come to power and maintain that power. It’s like the argument no Christian wants to hear: If God were omniscient and omnipotent, and if God created everything, why did he create the Devil and allow evil to persist? Shudder.

      So, most of the posters here are actually very pro-scientology in many ways. Most have had fantastic gains and apply the various pieces of information from the subject to make life run a bit smoother. And we recognize the good. We recognize the incredible benefits attainable. We recognize the value of having a sane planet. We just want all involved to ‘fess up and make needed corrections. Not as punishment, but as positive change.

      Spiritual freedom is a worthwhile and ancient goal. Applying Scientology principles can actually help you increase spiritual awareness. But should this gift come with a price tag? And what should that cost entail? Your freedom? Your life? Your children’s freedom? All of your assets? All of your free time?

      When I give a gift, it’s without strings attached. A gift is given without demand for recompense. Otherwise the offer is a prelude to barter.

      Your soul for your assets.

      And, for me, there is something sinister, something cynical, something criminal about bartering spiritual freedom for anything. Anything.

      I understand that we all have bodies to feed and mortgages and car payments. An organization needs to buy paper and ink and toilet paper; and it needs to pay the rent. I understand the economics. And I don’t begrudge any church the necessity of expecting its parishioners contributions to provide economic health.

      But,the account books should be open. No lies. No inurement. No personal accounts in the millions.

      And no abusing parishioners. No throwing children in chain lockers because “children are old thetans in young bodies.”

      You know, when your basement floods, you or someone has to go down and clean up the mess. A lot of the mess is going to stink, and it’s going to be disgusting. And you’re going to have to throw away a lot of stuff you might have wanted to keep. But realistically and practically, you have to face what is there without pretense. You can’t just leave the rot hiding in the corners and behind the couch and in the cabinets because you either didn’t want to handle it or wanted to ignore it or just hoped the damaged goods weren’t really damaged and you could keep them.

      So, in many ways, the posters here are down in the basement, holding a malodorous glob of mildewed garment at arms length, holding our noses and dropping it in the trash. We’re looking at those old love letters that have lost their ink and become nothing more than fetid paper mache and deciding that they’ve lost their value and need to be tossed. We realize that the basement has value. And we want it clean so we can restore it to livability.

      And we want to figure out how to ensure that it doesn’t flood again. It hurts to throw out those love letters and the letter jackets. So let’s clean up the mess and insure that it won’t happen again.

      Michael

      • sherrymk permalink
        May 26, 2010 6:09 pm

        Very astutely put Michael. I could not have stated it in a more perfect way.

      • Synthia permalink
        May 26, 2010 6:25 pm

        Michael,

        This is brillianly, eloquoently and so genuinely spoken. I could not agree with you more. This says it exactly. EXACTLY.

        Synthia

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 7:30 pm

        Hi Michael,

        I understand what you are saying. You write well and I write too much in what I am trying to get across. Sometimes I look back at what I write and I don’t even understand what I just wrote.

        So I will try to be simple and not go on and on and on (which I will probably end up doing anyhow).

        I understand the Tech. I studied it, looked at it, applied it and observed it works if understood and applied in a way to help another. It could also be altered and use to harm.

        LRH, Jesus Christ, Buddha, and other great believers in helping others, all had one thing in common. They were here on earth and men. In our universe we have laws of life that can be observed by most and most of these men expanded on them so they were broken down in a language that their followers could understand.

        I personally don’t believe that any of these men were perfect, nor do I believe that any of them were above the laws of life. Because some one is not perfect, does that mean what he has discovered is wrong?

        LRH received auditing, for as far as I can tell, up to the end. This tells me he didn’t feel he was above his tech. Jesus prayed and Buddha meditated every day, to me this means they didn’t feel they were above their teachings. Another words they all knew that they were not perfect. They all suffered the same faith as those who break the laws of the game and I believe they knew this as much as anyone.

        LRH did not alter his own tech. I don’t believe that he had Tech that he wanted used and left it in some drawer to be found 20 years later by RTC. When he was running the Church, things were going much better than now. He didn’t have to keep changing the tech so he could keep using the same members over and over for stats and money. Yes, in his research he found more data and changed the Bridge, but that was his hat. I don’t believe he changed anything for a stat.

        LRH actually produced a product and he worked hard at doing so. What has DM produced besides a way to steal money so he can act like the rich and famous? Ron even knew how to produce an income before Scientology, what did DM produce before he became COB?

        So did LRH break the laws of life written in his own tech? I am sure he did. Did he go PTS at the end because of the suppression on his lines and people trying to do him in and his work, probably. If he didn’t follow his own tech would he suffer the same outcomes that he writes about in the tech…of course. Does this make the Tech wrong? To me, no, that would be an A=A evaluation.

        I have never come across a reference were LRH said he was perfect and above what he wrote.

        There are sites now trying to convince Christians that Jesus had a sexual relationship the prostitute Mary or that he was married to her and had a family. This, to me, is only an intention to make his followers wrong in believing in his teachings. Which again, to me, only another A=A=A.

        But I totally agree that this mess as to be cleared up, but I am not willing to throw the Tech out the window with the rest of the mess.

        Thanks again…Me

      • May 26, 2010 9:15 pm

        It’s me again,

        A few points that might help.

        First, thanks to Jim Logan I’m a KSW non-Scientologist. That’s one of those oxymoronic statements that just leave some of the readers scratching their heads. But I also realize that the tech only goes so far, and I also realize that some people can accomplish the end goals of Scientology without using Scientology.

        One area I’ve explored lately is beings in the theta universe who are operating without bodies–at least not bodies as we know them. And, I accept that the experience is flawed, just as I accept that when I touch a chair I am touching a force field that has defined shape but is really mostly empty space, So how could space be solid? And how can one talk to beings without bodies?

        But speak to them I do. Without words. In concepts. And one of the things I find, which I accept as merely an hypothesis, is that all the information about how this universe was formed, and all the information about each and every one of us, and all the information about past societies is available. And the technology of Scientology is only one means of becoming an operating thetan. And Scientology is not designed to discover that knowledge as far as I know.

        But what is an operating thetan? It’s a thetan who knows he is a thetan and can operate or function as himself without dependence on anything else. He can create; he can perceive, he can understand, he can communicate. He’s got that ARC and KRC thing going.

        And we all talk about “The TEch.” But, what is tech? Tech is technology or studied technique. A technique for what? for accomplishing some end. Tech is merely a means and a skill used to accomplish some end. So, in complex fields, the technology is complex and hard to understand. And because we have all been exposed to complex and incomprehensible tech, we tend to go a little glassy-eyed about the word. But, it’s a simple word that means a simple thing. How do you do it?

        And what we are trying to do is initially to clear away those ideas or blocks or images which prevent one from being able to accurately observe the world and then prevent one from rationally analyzing that information and formulating sensible and practical responses. Thus you have a clear.

        And we are trying to make a person aware of himself/herself as a spiritual being separate from the body. And we are trying to return that being to complete awareness of himself as a spiritual being so he can operate independently of the body and regain his immortality. We’re trying to increase a being’s awareness to the point where he can understand and escape or overcome any traps or hinderances which prevent him from being all that he wishes to be.

        So, I think most who read these blogs have some interest in spiritual insight and gaining immortality. (Some not, but that’s okay.) And Scientology’s tech does provide a means of accomplishing this, so I really don’t think many here are overly interested in getting rid of or altering the tech. I think most would like to see the tech fully used, correctly used and taken to the limits. Just maybe not in an institution that can’t be trusted or which doesn’t follow its own basic rules. Most of us have had a lot of personal gain from auditing.

        Now, on a personal note for you. I don’t know how much training you’ve had, so forgive me if I’m presumptuous here. But, I detect by-passed-charge which is common. As you read these blogs and communicate, that by-passed charge will become apparent, will indicate, and will blow off. You will know. And you should pat yourself on the back, give yourself an acknowledgement, and move on. You might find yourself keyed out for days from communicating on these blogs. You might find yourself going exterior and having all manner of increased theta perceptions. Again, accept the cognition and the end phenomenon.

        After leaving Scientology, I learned in solo auditing that the thetan reads before the meter. You talked about knowing when you were had an f/n. The same thing applies to other meter reads.

        So, being here will be the cheapest case gain you’ve ever gotten.

        And another thing: posting on blogs can act as the e-meter drill designed to dirty your needle. You will write something that you desperately want to share and get no acknowledgement or response. And your needle will dirty just like in the drill. My advice is to just note the point of ARC break just as you do on cleaning a dirty needle. Cut comm dirties a needle. But the nature of blogs is an incomplete communication cycle.

        But, despite that, you’ll still get some heady experiences.

        Michael

      • Its me again permalink
        May 26, 2010 11:24 pm

        Hi Michael,

        Just found a com from you to me. I have to get use to going back and forth to find things here.

        I understand what you are saying. I am a Class V, and have done the BC to Level E.

        I understand that there is some BBC on this site, but I also understand why. Being betrayed can cause a lot of that, since that probably goes way way back on the track.

        If you want to handle BBC, depending if that is the actual charge, you would find it on the meter and then indicate the correct BBC to the pc. Of course, on ARC break, you are doing the same thing by assessing the BBC. Sometimes you can spot it out of session and it indicates to you and it will blow, but most of the time it takes a meter if it originated somewhere way back.

        I don’t try to C/S my own case. I am not a C/S and I can’t handle my case without a C/S at this point on the Bridge. (been there, tried that, got ugly) I do use remedies that I can use outside of session and they seem to work just fine.

        I am not here to try and blow my BBC by talking and listening. I get charge sometimes, sure, but since I don’t go into session daily, I just take a walk or do something and that handles it. I don’t get really keyed-in like I did at the bottom of the Bridge. I handled a lot throughout the years.

        I do, however, appreciate your concern for me and your advise. I can tell you have a very good help flow. I like people who like to help others.

        Oh yeah, one more thing:
        There are rightnesses and wrongnesses in conduct and society and life at large
        ( taken from HCOB 21 Jan 60, Justification). When one feels something is wrong or not right, it is appropriate to move to the Tone Level that fits.

        Have a great time with your solo auditing. Solo auditing is the best, no com lag at all.

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 9:19 pm

      Jeff,

      I understand.

      I wasn’t asking you or even thought you should censor anyone’s options. I just had a different idea on what this site was about from the articles I mentioned when I first came here. I can totally have this site and I certainly don’t know were this idea came from in Scientology that one can’t look…another altered piece of tech.

      I was just pointing out that, with the friends I have in mind, the sites I would first choose for them to look at are informational sites…then they could take it from there. Knowing hard core staff members, who may think in there own minds something is not right, this site might be too steep of a gradient to suggest to them. Hey, I could be wrong, what the hell do I know in that regard.

      No hard feelings..OK?

  22. Freeman permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:15 am

    Very interesting discussion. Jeff starts the post off with this dilemma: “One of my favorite scenes is the one where Locke screams at Jack, “Why is it so hard for you to believe?” And Jack fires back, “Why is it so easy for you to believe?” To me, this is one of the key parts of the puzzle — how can we “see” the same thing, yet have such diverse responses and opinions and experiences from that thing. I will not pretend to have an answer, although there is a part of me that judges harshly those who “see” it differently. (My work right now is tolerance and acceptance and learning the joys of being open to these differences. Thanks to Lunamoth for pointing me to that article btw.) Of course our experiences with scientology were different from each other, we went in with different motivations, we came away with different needs met (or not), and we evaluate the thing we “saw” differently. Why is that? Perhaps it’s as simple and obvious as “we’re different people.” Fascinating.

    Another thing I was thinking about has to do with faith — really really really REALLY strong faith. Before I ever heard of scn or “postulates,” I read a book called Name it and Claim it. The author believed that her faith or certainty or conviction or whatever it was, made things happen. An example: she entered a sweepstakes that had as a prize a brand new kitchen. The day she dropped her entry in the mail, she went about gutting her existing kitchen. I know Hubbard talked about the importance of thinking in terms of what you want already existing, not as something that was “going to happen” — it already had happened. He certainly was not the only person who has had this idea. I’ve had experiences with this: strong, clear idea of what I wanted and then it materialized. In one case, I had a vision of something that I didn’t understand (I was 12) and it wasn’t until many years later that the vision came to be in the physical universe and I understood.

    There is much research into our ability to “think” something into existence. Is it faith? Or something else at work?

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 3:00 pm

      What is interesting about Lost is that a lot of viewers came away with a different view point each time it aired. In the very beginning, I thought that the plane crashed and they were all dead and at some kind of middle point to look at their past life and figure out something they didn’t understand until they decided to go on.

      The the writers got smart and started putting like things in the plot and I started to have to think again.

      On Sunday, watching it, I was trying to figure it out before it ended. Are they all dead and they have just created their own universe together playing some type of game? Then, wait a minute, why do some of them want to get the rest to remember the Island? Are they playing a game now of not wanting to remember..wait, now what is going on?

      At the end I thought, well I guess they were all so tight and liked each other so much that they all agreed that once they all died, they would all go off together again and play another adventurous game. Others may have thought they were going to heaven together, and other thought..well, what ever they believed.

      I guess we all picked the ending we would of liked to happen, based on what we ourselves would of liked and our viewpoint of what life is all about.

  23. An Interested Party permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:19 am

    I found this pertinent:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gary-jones/spirituality-a-powerful-f_b_570129.html

  24. Rebecca-Tribecca permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:29 am

    I respect the previous posts and do not want to come across and flippant.

    But I have CERTAINTY that I was declared Clear and undeclared 6x.

    I have CERTAINTY that I had to pay each time the mess ups occurred for repair.

    I have KNOWLEDGE and CERTAINTY that I am $1.5 milion less in my net worth and that donations were scammed as their no accounting to any agency as to where the donations for Super Power, Libraries etc. went.

    Those videos of the GOLD BASE in the recent Freedom Mag made me SICK.
    This is not the Church of Scientology Management at Hemet.
    It is a series of buildings and playgrounds to pamper and pimp Celebrities so that
    DM has “connections in high places”.

    • Marta permalink
      May 26, 2010 5:42 pm

      My flippant certainty, knowledge, and experience tells me you are spot on. Pimps and whores by any other name….. still make a cluster-f*ck in CoS.

    • sherrymk permalink
      May 26, 2010 6:15 pm

      I see that you and I share a lot of the same CERTAINTIES…

      Yup…we certainly are knowledgeable…aren’t we?

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 8:51 pm

      I am totally with you on this. Before DM took over, no one invalidated the state of Clear, if you attested to Clear, you were Clear. Now all of a sudden a LRH reference is found that anybody who attested to Clear before a certain date is not clear, only keyed Out. Ok, fine, so everyone now has to be checked on the Clear Cog again and of course, mostly everyone doesn’t have it right. Interesting. Ok, let’s play this game further. You go to Qual and are shown part of a reference, LRH? Who knows in this day and age? Now you go back in, no matter where you are on the Bridge and re-do NED…now you come up with the correct cog, after being over run to death with the new definition of F/N…and you are now officially Clear.

      Are there people who were not Clear? Maybe. But come on, how can almost everyone around when LRH ran things not be Clear? Did LRH just miss this somehow, wrote about it and then just forgot where he put those notes to handle it back when? Did all the C/S’s miss it?

      How many more times are people going to have to re-do Clear, OT VII, OT VIII, before one starts to wonder? How many times is one going to have to re-do their training or Internships because I guess Ron wasn’t paying attention or just lost his notes? It use to be when Ron was running things, if you had your Certs for auditing, they were permanent. We use to have a Qual for corrections, now we have a Blanket Qual and Blanket C/Sing.

      How much by-pass charge does management think they can get away with, or is it a numbers game to them?

      Its like everything is now done as a Collective. These things are just big cash cows.

      Boy Rebecca, I am sorry you spend so much money. I think I would be afraid to add up what I spend after hearing your story. I hope you at least got some good wins or cogs for your money.

  25. Just Me permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:07 pm

    Following up on the themes already introduced here, I’d like to say something about measurements and evidence and proof. I realize most readers here already know what I’m about to say, but I still think it’s worth noting.

    Scientific measurements do indicate the existence of something. But measurements alone tell us little if anything about what those things are or mean. To understand what measurements might mean, we rely on the models we conjure up and how well they accommodate all the data we can collect. Also, our observations about the absence of something may simply represent our inability to measure (yet) that thing’s existence.

    Our knowledge of the physical universe, as well as any behaviors (including human behaviors) we can measure, increases as we build new tools to measure with, collect more data, and posit new models against which all our data will fit better. In fact, much of what we think we “know” about the physical universe is really just a layman’s easy expression of the theories and models currently in vogue, meaning the models that best accommodate the data we’ve got.

    Listed below are a few (quite respectable in their day) models that were supported by lots of measurements, but which turned out not to be duds as far as “knowledge” goes:

    1. Ptolemaic universe – Extremely accurate measurements led to the appreciation of cosmology in which the sun, moon and stars revolved around the sun. These planetary bodies’ movements, although complicated, were so predictable their movements around the earth could be plotted on paper and used to predict where and when they would appear in the sky. Oops!

    2. Difference between witches and good girls – Witches will sink when they’re tied up and thrown into deep water. However, innocent women will drown. Oops!

    3. Phrenology – The shapes and dimensions of people’s heads reveal their personalities and character traits. Oops!

    Below are just a couple of other current scientific models about the physical universe (what we now think we know is true) that we certainly didn’t know when I was in college:

    Plate tectonics – Earth’s land masses move slowly across the planet’s surface in response to forces we now refer to as plate tectonics. When I was in grad school, this theory was referred to by one of my professors as “that crackpot theory some woman geologist came up with.” Oops!

    Dark matter – This stuff is now believed to account for the great majority of all total mass-energy of the universe even though we can’t measure it yet because we haven’t found any of it yet. When I was in college, all matter was known to be made up of atoms (neutrons, protons and electrons) and a few other weirdo particles like neutrinos and quarks. Oops!

    Do plate tectonics and dark energy really exist? I dunno. However, those models do explain much of what we have observed. But for all I know in 200 years we may discover that flying pigs really run the universe.

    In closing, I once met a nurse in an Intensive Care Unit in Los Angeles (I was auditing a friend there who’d been in a terrible accident). While I was hanging around, an ICU nurse (not a Scientologist) told me amazing stories about some very measurable phenomena she had observed when people were acutely ill or dying in ICU. She was certain those measurements meant something, but she couldn’t say for sure what they were. That nurse was one smart cookie who probably would’ve been a good scientist, since she appreciated the difference between measurements (evidence) and models.

    I guess I’ve been a scientist so long now that the only people who really bother me are those who know what they‘re talking about.

    Just Me

    P.S. Jeff, thank you so much for this topic. I’ve been wanting to get some of this stuff off my chest for a very long time.

    • Just Me permalink
      May 26, 2010 8:30 pm

      Corrections for post above:

      Listed below are a few (quite respectable in their day) models that were supported by lots of measurements, but which turned out to be duds as far as “knowledge” goes:

      * * *

      2. The difference between witches and good girls – Witches will float when they’re tied up and thrown into deep water. However, innocent women will drown. Oops!

      • Heather G permalink
        May 27, 2010 4:21 am

        And the Ptolemaic view was that the sun, moon and stars revolved around the earth, IIRC. 😉

      • Just Me permalink
        May 27, 2010 2:55 pm

        Arrgh, yes, Heather. Thank you!

        Too much fast-typing, not enough slow-reading.

        Just Me

    • Heather G permalink
      May 27, 2010 4:19 am

      I guess I’ve been a scientist so long now that the only people who really bother me are those who know what they‘re talking about.

      Great comment, Just Me. I think part of growing older and wiser is knowing you know less than you knew when you were younger!

      One of the problems I have with study tech is the goal of achieving “100% mastery” and certainty. It’s fool’s gold. Plus, it robs people of the adventure that life-long learning is.

      In my professional life, the best people to work with have been those who are most competent and whose competence includes an acceptance of the fact that they can’t know everything. That acceptance makes people teachable and good to work with. The hardest people to work with are those who think they know it all (because they can’t be taught) and those who are too afraid to be seen as incompetent to admit that they don’t know it all.

      Cheers

  26. Mike permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:09 pm

    I find this whole thread fascinating. Its me again’s comments I find I agree with and enjoyed.

    But when all is said and done it still comes down to belief and how we know what we know. Even when we know something with certainty, is that enough? How did we arrive at that certainty? The mind (however you choose to define it, be it physical or non-physical) is extremely clever and resourceful. I have had experiences that were very real and believable, but they were hallucinations. The mind is very capable of fooling us. And the easiest person in the world to tell a lie to is yourself.

    Are we being fooled when we believe something? When we KNOW something? Maybe. I prefer to believe that I am not just MEST and will cease to be after this body draws its last breath. Is it true? Maybe.

    I could also comment on Lost here, but would end up going on forever. 🙂 Suffice it to say that I agree with Its me again, again.

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 9:31 pm

      Thanks Mike,

      You said this so well, that I have looked at my quest to end the cycle of birth and re-birth in a body and now tweak it a little:

      I see that I would have to be Cause over my mind and not be fooled by it to even get to a point where I could even understand how to achieve my quest.

      Good Point!

    • Heather G permalink
      May 27, 2010 4:29 am

      Cogito ergo sum. I think, therefore I am. Ultimately, as Descartes put it, the only way I can prove that I exist is that I have thoughts. After all, even my body may be a hallucination or imagining, as might be my perceptions of others reacting toward me. So, at an extreme level, even our observations of data, such as the effect of gravity upon things, are matters of belief.

      Most of us don’t live on that basis, of course. But it’s a healthy thing to remember on occasion.

  27. Just Me permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:56 pm

    Up above, Michael (OnceUponaTime) said: “And another thing: posting on blogs can act as the e-meter drill designed to dirty your needle. You will write something that you desperately want to share and get no acknowledgement or response. And your needle will dirty just like in the drill. My advice is to just note the point of ARC break just as you do on cleaning a dirty needle. Cut comm dirties a needle. But the nature of blogs is an incomplete communication cycle.

    “But, despite that, you’ll still get some heady experiences.”

    Michael, thank you for offering this observation. It’s so true.

    So I would like to say to everyone who has posted and commented on this thread: I’ve read and gained much from everything you’ve said here. This has, thus far, been one of my favorite threads on this blog. Thank you for communicating and for what you have shared. It has helped me understand this topic much better.

    Just Me

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 10:22 pm

      Right back at your Just Me.

  28. lunamoth permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:27 pm

    Wow, I have SO enjoyed reading all of the posts on this topic. Sherry, It’s Me Again, Just Me, OnceUponaTime, Aeolus, Jeff (of course), and all you contributors – you are some heavy hitters.

    Thank god you have the communication skills to go along with the creativity, analytical abilities and mental organization, or I would not be benefiting from your viewpoints here and now. Thanks for taking the time to put it down in words, and for being willing to open to view your most personal ideas about existence.

    Speaking of here and now… I am going to share MY viewpoint on this. I don’t wish to invalidate or make less of, in any way, the differing viewpoints that have come before me. Simply put, my viewpoint is this: I no longer care. I find the discussion fascinating. I think you guys are brilliant.
    You have held my interest throughout this discussion, but I have nothing to contribute.

    I don’t mean that I’m apathetic about these issues, but rather that I no longer grant them very much importance in my life. In the past several months, since my scientology-colored glasses fell onto the pavement and were crushed underfoot by a hob-nailed, jack-booted foot, my world view and my view of the internal, spiritual side of my own existence have both gone through some unexpected changes.

    I am amused, in a far-removed sort of way, by the anxiety that can sometimes be produced by the realization that we share such diverse, even opposing views on these subjects. I think the contributors on this blog handle that very well, actually, and there is an INORDINATE amount of granting to others the right to differ, as well as a great respectfulness, generally, toward others. Makes me respect you all the more.

    But more and more, I find myself just in present time, sometimes in the future for a bit, but mainly I am experiencing life. And I find that life is actually much lovelier, friendlier, more beautiful and SATISFYING than I had previously ever realized.

    You would think that studying an applied religious philosophy for 30-plus years would have taken me to that place, at some point. I mean, you would, wouldn’t you? Yet while involved with scientology I was constantly ptp’d, was often feeling overty about spending time doing anything but course, auditing, volunteering or making money to pay for bridge, donate, etc. And to be clear, I usually wasn’t doing any of those things, but I still felt guilty all the time on some level, that I should be. My reach for life in general was stunted.

    No more. And by having that reach for life rehabbed, as it was, I find that the burning questions of existence are no longer burning. I can’t explain it. I just feel calmer, more present, happier.

    So while I have enjoyed this conversation among some Class A minds, I have nothing of real value to contribute to it. Please allow me to “lurk moar,” as It’s Me Again said. I may not be able to inform the dialogue, but I’m still here, listening.

    lunamoth

    • Its me again permalink
      May 26, 2010 11:41 pm

      Lunamoth,

      Sounds like you need to just kick back and key out the rest of this life time! That sounds like an acceptable therapy to me! Just make sure you don’t walk barefooted where you stepped on and crushed those glasses!

      Your com to us had real value in itself.

      Me

    • Mary Jo permalink
      May 27, 2010 5:46 am

      Oh my Luna, you spoke my mind!!!! Thank you! Like a mutual friend recently said, “The physical universe is my friend!!!” LOL, life is good!

    • sherrymk permalink
      May 27, 2010 6:14 am

      Ah..sista soul mate…exactimundo my LunaMoth.

    • May 27, 2010 9:03 pm

      Dear Lunamoth,
      I had about the same cognition, i.e. It doesn’t matter.

      There were many questions I had:
      Why am I here? Is there more to just me? What is it? What am I *really*? Am I “just me” or something more than that?
      Why are we here? What is our role in the world?
      What’s the purpose and goal of LIFE? What’s the sense and meaning to living?
      What is “normal” life? Do I live “normal” Life?
      Is there “standard life”? Can I reach living this “standard life”?
      What is my *hat* in life?
      What is the principal principle of my existence?
      Is there a way people can become “more of themselves”?

      Now, when I look at these questions and at myself having my head been cluttered up with them 24/7, I tell myself, “Who cares!”
      “The answers” don’t matter to me any longer. Whatever anyone comes up with, is just of the same fabric – a founder doesn’t like it here as it is. Sad!

      Scientology not only didn’t answer those questions to me (and others) but got me (and others) confused and creeping along the life, and not walking freely (which it was supposed to teach one to do).
      And not only scientology but other teachings, too.

      Being preached by all those mumblings and babblings about *meaning of life* and your *Supreme role* of being on this planet, got me to think there was some *meat* to it.
      Getting oneself *willfully into the trap* was that what it actually was (and I mean even before being involved in scientology).

      What brought me to such self-exploring in the first place?
      – Being into self-exploring journey.
      – Stupid attempts at making “TRUE ME” out of myself.
      – Discomfort and shyness at being myself.
      – Uncertainty in own determinism.
      – Certainty that I had to be guided and directed if I wanted to live happy life.

      No more needed.

      Life doesn’t owe me to be this way or that way, or my way.
      It’s better to perceive and take what it gives me with gratitude (and enjoyment, where there is an opportunity). And without continual sweating about making “my postulates” come true.

      So much easier having stopped looking for the meaning and questioning life. Life itself gives me meaning, and takes me to more enjoyable, fulfilling existence. I just follow where my life leads me.
      It opens up all flows.

      Simple pleasures of life, that’s what counts.
      I’m not interested anymore about “spiritual journeys”. Physical side is much more fulfilling.
      I’d rather go to a disco than ponder about “the meaning of my life”.

      Jeff, thanks to you personally for helping me to get out of this endless and useless “spiritual journey.”

  29. Moving Forward permalink
    May 29, 2010 5:39 pm

    Jeff, I wanted to say thanks for this great article. I’m late to the game on this one, but I haven’t had much time recently to post any comments, even though I’ve found these discussions very interesting and enlightening.

    I look back and shudder at times when I’ve held ideas with ‘unshakable certainty’ but with no real foundation. This is something that goes very much against my nature.

    I had previously thought agnostics were fence-sitters and I had only thought of it in Christian terms, as in ‘I don’t know if there is a God.’ But, honestly, it’s a term I’ve never really looked into. Your explanation piqued my interest because it very much aligns with my own views.

    I haven’t considered myself religious for most of my life. In fact, I’ve been an athiest for probably close to 20 years. But I guess I’m also agnostic in the sense that I consider this is my own personal belief (disbelief?) and don’t consider that I can ‘know’ this is true for everyone. I’ve been interested in spirituality, but not in what I consider to be the ‘new age, hippie’ sense. Mysticism and metaphysical experiences just aren’t my thing. Synthia’s story about the OT8 she worked for is exactly the sort of crap I always thought was crap. I think she was spot on about ‘knowingness’ becoming superstition.

    Her story reminded me of something. I once got really irritated at a small group of OTs who felt that they were body brokers. I was pregnant and a long-time staff member had just dropped his body. These 3 people came up to me and asked me if ‘he could have the body’. WTF! I was so pissed at them. I said that, first of all, it’s not my body to ‘give away’. Secondly, it’s not up to them to determine who, what and where the guy was going to move on to and that they weren’t practicing any sort of Scientology doing what they were doing. To me, they were just being all electrified about whatever quasi-spiritual phenomena they thought they were involved in.

    Maybe some consider this wishy-washy, but I’ve always considered it presumptuous to be certain of such beliefs for others. You may be certain of something for yourself, but that’s still just your own personal certainty for you, not for everyone else. I had a twin on KTL once who did not believe in ‘past lives’ and others had tried to enforce their beliefs on him. To them it was a certainty and they couldn’t accept any other view. That, to me, was never what Scientology was about.

  30. May 31, 2010 11:16 pm

    Grat piece

  31. June 9, 2010 4:33 pm

    I have recently arrived at that point where I am certain that I am uncertain. And, I feel no obligation or compulsion to be certain about anything. For me, this is a very good place to be as I am discovering that from here I can finally look without restriction. I can freely experience and come to understand.

    Leaving CoS was not so difficult. Leaving Scn, on the other hand, has been. I believe it has something to do with all those many, many laminated layers of false certainties that I so thoroughly embraced and fully accepted as being of my own origination and truth.

    I have come to the conclusion that the reason I have been having such difficulty in actually leaving Scn is because I did not really understand it. Furthermore, I have discovered that I could not come to understand it by looking at it. Not even by taking it apart and analyzing all of its components could I come to understand it. Instead, for me to come to an understanding of Scn, it required that look at, explore and experience other things (things that I used to instantly reject as being some form of insane implanted dramatization) which brought me to a veiwpoint where my perspective changed enormously whereby what I was viewing changed enormously too.

    Scn, I have found, is but one very small thread amongst a seemingly infinite number of other threads that are all part of an enormous fabric that has been assigned myriad labels throughout time. And, I am of the mind, that one cannot fully understand a single thread within this fabric until one begins to have an understanding of the whole. The more I understand the whole, the more I am able to understand about the single thread and its relationship to, and function within, the whole.

    THERE IS A UNIVERSAL TRUTH. Of that I am uncertain. But that said, it’s my idea that there is a universal truth and my desire to understand “The Big Picture”, that continues to nudge me onto different paths for the purpose of discovering and understanding more of self. And, like trying to make sense out of Scn, discovering more about “self”, can only be achieved by discovering more about the whole.

    I realize now that when I took the path of Scn that I took the path that lead right into a spiritual snare. Once I was secure in the snare, I was fed upon on numerous levels. And the further down that path I walked, the more ensnared I became. Entering onto the path of Scn was a big mistake until, that is, that point where I finally woke up (just recently btw). The instant I woke up, the mistake morphed into a most incredible and valuable lesson. I am lucky like that.

    There is a part of me that exists somewhere, on some other frequency, that is much more awake and aware than that part of me that is writing this comment right now. That part of me that is more aware is doing all that it can to move this part of me onto paths that will serve to wake “me” up enough so that I can join “me” where I exist on a different (higher) frequency. Of course, this is just theory on my part. That said, throughout this lifetime as Monte Smith, there have been many experiences that support this theory.

    ……………………

    Jeff, thanks much for this blog post. It’s incredible! And, of course, as always….all of those commenting here have really delivered! I have been evoked beyond recognition. 🙂

    Thank you all so very much. As I have said before, but will never tire of saying it, you are each and all remarkable beings and I am so fortunate to be able to meet and explore with you here.

    Monte

    FYI: here’s my email… monterock@yahoo.com To you all, please feel free to communicate with me if ever or whenever you might want to. My email inbox is wide open.

    • June 12, 2010 7:48 pm

      I came back to this thread to add some more of my thoughts on the topic of certainty.

      At the time I intercepted Scn I was very uncertain about matters of the spirit, mind and body. But, because I was uncertain, I was continually exploring new avenues of conjecture and opened numerous doors that led into rooms where I found the “certainty” of others who were being very certain (and a bit forceful) about their “certainties.” Note: I never stayed for long in these rooms. All that cetainty about such things made be nervous. Then finding Scn, I began following a trail of crumbs cleverly organized into an essay titled Personal Integrity. Following then another organization of crumbs where I read about Scn not being the “only” way but being a “workable” way. And finally, I was in far enough and as I read about Scios being free thinking people, I did not notice the door being locked behind me. Without looking back I proceeded ever deeper within the room becoming more and more CERTAIN as I went. But, with each new level of certainty attained, I not only stopped to close, but also tightly lock, any all doors that might open up into other possibilities. In achieving certainty I no longer needed to look or examine anything outside of where I was.

      I have no aversion to certainty or being certain. In fact, I know that when one is certain about what they’re doing, they usually get along better in life. However, when certainty becomes so rigid that one closes any and all doors that might offer connections to other possibilites, that is a very detrimental condition to get oneself into. For that is when one is stopped from being able to expand their perspective and understanding. I encounter people everyday who are so certain about what they’re doing, what they know as truth, that they will not even consider another possibility.

      Empiracally, when one is really certain about something there is a self-security in that state. And if one has locked themself into a false certainty then any resulting self-security is also false and this is a condition wherein the individual can be easy used and manipulated by others.

      Now that I have egressed from the myriad false certainties of Scn, I am once again exploring, expanding and having tremendous fun! I have discovered that I can be quite certain about being uncertain. 🙂 Being in a state of uncertainty for me is my freedom, my fertile ground in which to grow, branch out and continue to bear luscious fruit of love and understanding. OH,oh…I’d better watch out here…the next thing you know I’ll be getting all “airy-fairy” with you. Cna’t have that! 🙂

  32. June 22, 2010 12:23 pm

    Things are rarely what they appear to be. Likewise, things are rarely about what they seem to be about. Perspective is key. Am I “zoomed in” or am I “zoomed out” that is the question. And the answer to that question makes a world of difference in how I consider and understand the game.

    In my leaving scientology I had to once again pick up the art of suspending disbelief. Disbelief is a formidable barrier in one’s being able to effectively seek and/or view truth.

    Practising the art of suspending disbelief reveals myriad doors where prior there appeared to be only a very solid wall. While in one hand disbelief is suspended, in the other hand I have come to realize that I hold the master key that will unlock any door that I might want to open. This “master key” is none other than my newly embraced state of uncertainty.

    • Jeff permalink*
      June 22, 2010 3:50 pm

      Isn’t “suspending disbelief” the same as “believing”? One could say that if you suspended enough disbelief, you could end up believing pretty much anything.

      • June 23, 2010 2:40 pm

        Hi Jeff. Thanks much for your reply. I had to give your question some thought and after doing so I have concluded that suspending disbelief is not the same as believing.

        When one is in a state of disbelief with regards to a particular thing the doors that might lead to any exploration of the topic are kept shut. Now, it does happen that one can, while still in disbelief, open a door, walk through and claim to be having a look. However, without suspending their disbelief the “look” they give will be weighted to support their disbelief. But, if they can manage to actually suspend their disbelief prior to walking through the door and having a look, they will then be able to look without modification. Whether or not their experience in exploration will lead to a new belief is a result that can only be speculated upon.

        For example: Let’s say that I am in a state of complete disbelief that LRH had a dark side to him and that he presented himself dishonestly on many occasions. While in this state of mind I instantly reject any suggestion (no matter how slight) that LRH was less than perfect and label such as entheta trash. And, if I do happen to look at anything I do so with the full intent to discredit it. In other words, this door of exploration remains tightly closed. But, if I can suspend my disbelief regarding this matter I can then open the door and walk into that space of uncertainty where I now begin to actually look at the data which is extant on LRH. Maybe I will come to believe, to one degree or another, that LRH was not so perfect as I had believed or, I could return to my former conclusion that he was exactly as I thought he was or….I could remain in that space of uncertainty that exists between disbelief and belief and continue to explore the matter further.

        Being able to suspend one’s disbelief allows one to open doors ad go have an honest look for themselves. Sometimes this will lead to having new or modified beliefs. Sometimes not.

        It is okay to be uncertain. The space of uncertainy is the journey wherein you are not waiting for the answers (comm lag) you are actively looking for the answers. That said, I have to revise my earlier statement where I wrote…

        “This ‘master key’ is none other than my newly embraced state of uncertainty.”

        Instead, I now see that it is the suspending of disbelief that is actually the “master key” that opens all the doors that lead into the space of uncertainy. Uncertainty is the journey between disbelief and belief.

        Thanks for evoking me Jeff. It’s fun!! :>)

        Monte

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