This has been a long time coming. A lonnnnnng time coming. I have been heartily “out of the closet” since Michael Fairman was descended upon by the undead, but I hadn’t figured out where to begin to unfold my story – so I procrastinated.
After meeting with Marty and Mike a few Tuesdays ago here in L.A., witnessing the keystone-cop-esque ABSURDITY (to be kind) of “the squirrel-buster” brigade and after being part of the conversation which encouraged Michael to write his latest post, I decided I had done enough procrastinating.
My name is Joy Graysen. Some of you know me as Joy Stimmel, Joy Veikley, Joy Fairman, Michael’s wife, Sky’s mother. Some of you know me as the voice of Flag’s anthem “Flag Is Here”. Some of you know me from all of the church events I have sung for over the last 25 years. And some of you don’t know me at all. After this open letter, hopefully you will just know me as Joy — one of you.
In 1983 I came home from my first year of college, very disillusioned with education. I complained to my father, Sam, my soulmate, that I was disgusted. Why could we get a man to the moon, but we couldn’t communicate to the person sitting in front of us? He told me about a man named L. Ron Hubbard, who had created a magnificent body of work that might help me with my dilemma. (My Mom and Dad had become Scientologists the late 60’s, for a brief time)
I was astonished to find that everything I had been lamenting was covered, explained and handled in Scientology.
I found a philosophy and a group of people that believed what I believed – that we all have within us, infinite wisdom, infinite compassion and infinite potential.
I found a group that supported and encouraged critical thinking, individuality, granting of beingness and the divine right to BE who WE are – each one of us. It was OK to question what didn’t make sense, and we were taught to disagree with the “apparencies” of the world around us.
I found a group that nurtured our inherent nature to be kind and powerful at the same time. A group that taught us to help others by helping them to become their true selves.
I signed up because I saw the truth everywhere I looked. Possibly for the first time in my life. I felt like I was finally home after an endless journey. I could cry now, remembering the relief I felt at that time in my life.
So I wound up on the “Bridge” in NYC.
As I became more and more familiar with Ron’s legacy, my admiration for him kept expanding. I couldn’t believe how much knowledge he had assembled and given us to understand and apply.
He created the technology of the mind and the spirit with Dianetics and Scientology to help us free ourselves from the suppressive booby-traps of life and our experiences.
He created the “Ethics Technology” to help us get out of our own way so we could take full advantage of the “tech”.
He created an organizing system to improve the management of our lives and careers; and in addition, set up a stalwart system of checks and balances so that his body of work could not be corrupted by external or internal influences. He created the Organizing or Org Board which helped ensure that KSW (a policy called Keeping Scientology Working) is always applied and everything operates smoothly according to his policies.
In my mind, the structure of this Org Board was a given. That’s how the church operated, and on every level, whether a mission, an org or upper management, this was simply how it worked. and I trusted that this was kept “in”. I never questioned that it was being followed. Scientologists were ethical, especially the Sea Org staff members; ESPECIALLY the upper, upper level management Sea Org staff members in RTC.
These were the reasons I chose to trust the group and to seek enlightenment from Scientology.
And so began my 25 year journey. I became “drunk” with the euphoria that comes with falling in love. I was in love with the endless possibilities of freedom. I was in love with the colors around me which seemed brighter. I was in love with the exhilaration of actually being listened to, being duplicated and, (who knew) being acknowledged! It was a whole new world and a world I had been seeking forever.
Three years later, in 1986, my daddy, the man who taught me kindness, who taught me how to sing in three part harmony, play the piano, guitar and ukulele by ear, all before I was 3 years old, the man who gave me my sense of humor and who introduced me to Scientology, died of a heart attack just before his 45th birthday.
This sweet man, who never once in my life let me down (with the exception of the time he tricked me into surrendering my blankey) left me without saying goodbye.
I wasn’t mad at him. But I did feel as though I had fallen down into the deepest, blackest hole there ever was in the history of any universe, and that no matter what happened from then on, I would always be living my life looking up from the bottom of that hole.
When I arrived at Celebrity Center NY for a session, I was numb and brittle and scarred to the center of my being. I knew that I would always feel this way but that Sam would have wanted me to have a session, so…
I emerged from my auditing room one hour later feeling like I could actually ‘have’ the loss. This was a true miracle. I would never have believed this could be the result of just a single hour of auditing. It still defies logic when I recall the magnitude of my loss at the time. But if there were ever a testament to the validity of LRH’s tech, for me that was it a million times over.
(blogger note: please take a moment to listen to Joy’s song written for her father Sam 08_Burning_Flame_(a_song_for_Sam))
So THIS was why I got into Scientology and THIS is how the tech was supposed to be delivered!
From that point in my life I was able to ‘have’ things more easily – good and bad. I guess because I was willing to accept their contribution to me and mine to them, regardless of whether I liked it or not. I was able to ‘have’ situations for what they were, with less protest than before; but I would still fight for what I wanted or what was right. I felt more able than before because I felt more grounded in present time.
In 1989, I moved to Los Angeles to be near CC Int and immersed myself in the group. I lived across the street from CC, and associated mostly with other Scientologists. I felt safe knowing that we all shared the same knowledge of ethics and ARC, and were all learning to understand ourselves and each other spiritually.
In 1993 I married Michael Fairman, and that summer we arrived at Flag for his OT VI and VII. With inheritance my father left me, I decided to do “L 11”
We were trying to have a baby at that time and had been waiting months for the right biological “window”. Michael had to CSW his course supervisor, Antonino, for permission to, as he put it, “make a baby”. Luckily Antonino was from Italy or we might not have been granted “time off from course” for baby making! Although it is a funny story to tell, it is a poignant example of how the church controlled even the most intimate of moments in our lives.
We returned to L.A. with a bun, named Sky, in the oven. Yay.
Also during that summer, I called my sister in Italy for weeks, attempting to get her to Flag. She eventually arrived and bought her Bridge to OT VIII. Her inheritance of $89,000, which she used for the package, eventually got her only to Clear.
I think one of the true turning points for both Michael and me was the event releasing the Volunteer Minister Course (remember the accompanying yellow back pack?). It was at The Shrine Auditorium. As we left the actual event, on our way to the giant Expo Hall, we were bombarded by literally walls of Sea Org members forming a human chain. Their patter to us was, “cash or credit?” No “hi, how are you, how’d you like the event?”; just “cash or credit, cash or credit, cash or credit”. They were selling the backpack with the new book in it. Michael and I looked at each other in disbelief. The basic fundamentals of Scientology were being ignored- hell- obliterated.There was no comm formula, no ARC triangle, no TRs, just an enforced hard-sell tactic. We were extremely annoyed by this. It was a violation of the most basic of basic sales techniques, never mind Scientology precepts. This was simply enforced reality, enforced communication and enforced affinity. Not a good cocktail.
Somehow we managed to work our way through the Expo Hall to escape. When we got outside, we both remarked that this patter had to have come from up-lines. It couldn’t have been a coincidence that every staff member had this exact same patter. We became unsettled by the idea that this command must have come from David Miscavige and we couldn’t reconcile the utter “outness” of it.
Similarly, when Tom Cruise won his Freedom Medal Award, we couldn’t understand how Miscavige could allow the video of Cruise to be broadcast at that major event. The actor seemed so hyper and on the edge of losing control. It also seemed very odd that he was not adequately hatted by Church officials — witness PR blunders of jumping up and down on Oprah’s couch, and his embarrassing attack of Brooke Shields and Matt Lauer in regard to psych drugs. Regardless of the fact that psych drugs are harmful, it seemed wildly out- PR in the way he handled it.
Then came the release of the “The Basics” That just seemed ludicrous, implausible and contrived from the moment we heard it. That’s when we really started to feel that cold feeling creeping up the back of our necks…
How could LRH, a man, who was infinitely meticulous, overlook all the basic books??? He never once checked or realized there were all of these errors in translation? Gross errors? “The blind leading the blind” as David Miscavige so eloquently put it… This signified to us that not only was the church trying to come up with new ways of making money, but that they were covertly admitting to actively and OVERTLY altering the tech!!
This was the beginning of my awareness that the miracles of LRH that I mentioned earlier, would be forfeited. And, as I later learned from tech terminals more highly trained than I, that was exactly what was happening.
During that book-selling campaign, we were bombarded by enforced reality after enforced reality regarding buying them, training on them, buying them for others, buying them for Orgs and Missions, buying them for other countries, donating so translations could be made into other languages, buying for your dog, cat, gerbil and goldfish… I mean come onnnn…
So we started distancing ourselves, slowly but surely from the church. We talked about our observations to each other but were careful not to discuss our concerns with any other Scientologists – lest we “spread entheta” or were “critical” of the church…No, no, no…we know what THAT would mean! We did eventually to a select few, who we thought were safe terminals. We later found out otherwise.
And then there is the “Ideal Org” campaign!!! OY VEY!! Could THIS be any more contrary to what LRH wanted? And at the very least, makes no business sense.
It seemed there was no end to the request for donations. I even saw a promo recently advertising that the church would accept people’s gold teeth towards donations…Ummmm…?
In 2009, Paul Haggis’ letter of resignation was made public and Michael read it. He had met Paul and was friends with his wife Deborah, so he was very stricken by the letter’ s content. One of Paul’s major upsets with the church was, as he saw it, an intolerance of homosexuality. I myself had witnessed countless examples of Scientologists rolling their eyes in regard to someone who was gay, or the generality that all gays are covertly hostile.
And now here is the crux of MY personal crossroads in regards to the current church. More and more I felt like I had to withhold myself from my so called friends. Not because I had committed overts but because I felt a growing distance between my core beingness, my values, and these group members.
I started to notice an extreme lack of tolerance. I observed an arrogance and a ‘holier than thou’ point of view towards anyone who was not a Scientologist. My “friends” would have a “no sympathy” attitude towards homeless people, homosexuals, as I mentioned, and really anything remotely liberal minded. I thought compassion and understanding were at the core of Scientology’s values.
I remember Michael having a conversation with an OT VIII where Michael asked why shouldn’t Scientology be available to everyone, not just the rich people, and the response was “Scientology is for the able, they’ll just have to be left behind”.
I felt that I had to “good roads, and good weather” my friends and family more and more. I was no longer free to just be myself and talk about things that were important to me because if I gave money or food to a homeless person, or if I had gay friends or if I believed that healthcare is vital for everybody, that I would be scorned.
The main reason I embraced Scientology, as I outlined at the beginning of this letter, was disappearing. I no longer felt safe or comfortable within the group because the granting of beingness on many dynamics seemed to be withering away.
I believed that as we evolved, as we became more and more ourselves, as we mastered our understanding of the tone scale, the more our ARC for humanity would grow. As far as I am concerned, we would have MORE tolerance, understanding and compassion, not less. Regardless of any political inclination, we should have more heart, more generosity. I personally found this ‘group think’ to be getting more and more prevalent.
And don’t get me started on the utter snobbery of the Scn celebrities. Aside from a very select few, their arrogance towards people who weren’t in the ‘upper, upper President’s office circle’ was laughable. Nowhere in Hollywood, outside of our church, did I experience such blatant self-importance and nonsense. Michael has been acting for close to 50 years and I have been to my fair share of Hollywood events with major celebrities. They never acted like our celebrities did.
Sooo, at that point, I began confronting what I had suspected for a long while – there was something very wrong at the top of the Org Board. There were just too many uniform negative behaviors within the group. Again, it could not have simply been a coincidence.
And so I began reading the blogs and meeting with people who had personally experienced some of the most horrific atrocities perpetrated at the highest levels of Church management.
One such meeting lasted for more than 5 hours, where I sat, with my mouth hanging open, trying not to vomit or pass out. No one was that good an actor. No one could have made up the details of the story I heard. Hopefully, one day soon you will learn of that particular incident.
Then we started meeting more people who had left the church. Some had similar horror stories. Some had terrible experiences of disconnection by their immediate family members. Some had been physically injured, others mentally, and all spiritually.
Where is executive oversight? It appears , from countless reports, that Miscavige runs the whole show, with no one but his sycophants following him around, doing his bidding.
There are FAR too many reports, eye witness accounts, broken families and unanswered questions for all this to be manufactured by a group of “SP’s” as Church spokespeople continue to affirm. And a large majority of these reports have come from people who devoted 20, 30, 40 years or more of their lives to Scientology, many ex-Sea Org, many who personally worked with LRH. Am I supposed to believe that these people have anything to gain from making up such heinous lies? Pu-leeeease!
At that point we had decided to unofficially leave the Church. I had gotten Michael’s agreement that we would stay under the radar because I love my sister and my nieces very much and I didn’t want to jeopardize my relationship with them.
By this time, Michael and I had already met Marty Rathbun and Michael traveled to Texas to get some auditing. The week after he returned, my sister, who has been auditing on OT VII, arrived in LA for work, and I decided to tell her some of what I had learned. I wanted to ease her in to the reality I had come to learn over a period of time – to “test the water” with her. She was shocked and clearly shaken and upset with me for bringing this up. She then disappeared for two days with no communication.
When I finally did hear from her she said she wanted to discuss what we talked about. So we got together and it was obvious she had been coached to “handle” me.
She told me I owed it to myself and to the church to go into CC and get the other side of the story. I was reluctant to do this as I knew I would be opening Pandora’s Box by alerting the church of my disaffection but she insisted that it would mean so much to her if I could just do that. I explained to her that it would probably make things worse but she said to me “I guarantee that if you are not convinced, Jenny Butler promised me you could just walk away and you would not be harassed” (Jenny Butler is CC Int President’s office staff).
Michael and I arrived at CC and needless to say, I never got to speak to Jenny, because when I arrived, two OSA officers were waiting for us. I refused to speak with them.
Right after this, Tommy Davis, Mike Sutter and one of Michael’s oldest friends, Lee Kessler arrived at Michael’s doorstep with goldenrod in tow and his “adventure” began in earnest. (The details are in Michael’s resignation letter to be found on Marty’s blog) Kessler set up this meeting with Michael on the false pretenses that they were going to discuss a script…
That night, my sister sent me a scathing voicemail stating that she heard what Michael had done, and that I had better make sure that he goes in to the church and fix it. I was too furious to call her back so sent her a long text, explaining how they surveilled him, lied to him, threatened him, and harassed him. THIS is the church you’re defending?” I asked her. THIS is the church that’s going to save mankind??” I sent her several texts explaining the situation, trying to tell her what was really going on and then discovered that she had immediately forwarded my personal texts to OSA and Tommy Davis.
I then sent a long email to my sister after that and one to my mother, to again try and explain the situation.
What follows are excerpts from the letter I got back:
“It is my power of choice to communicate with whom I wish – no-one decides this for me – I decide for myself…”
She lists several LRH references on Suppression and Suppressive Acts, and then quotes from a piece LRH wrote in 1964 countering an article written in the Saturday Evening Post that same year: “This “article”. LRH wrote, “is a rather clumsy effort to discredit the leader of a movement by direct personal attack…”
Neither Michael, I, Marty, Mike, nor the overwhelming majority in the Independent movement have EVER attacked LRH personally. So it’s obvious she means Miscavige who is under attack. LRH continued, “…By misquotes and inferences, statements out of context and avoiding all actual values, they seek to kill confidence and therefore the movement…” End LRH quote
Now my sister does an A=A=A: “You and Michael are trying to stop my Church, my beliefs, my life. I do not take your inclination in this direction lightly. You are both against LRH by connecting up with a squirrel and a declared SP who is making a weak fruitlessly feeble attack – it is one neither he nor you will ever win at, as Mommy pointed out to you months ago. Everything you are doing is in complete contravention with Scientology and LRH policies.”
She continues with the personal attack on Marty, Michael and myself and justifies the intervention at Michael’s. And there were additional vicious comments.. The e-mail doesn’t even sound like her. There are words in it I know she has never used before in her life. All too pathetic. She and my mother have both disconnected from me.
Once Michael’s letter on Marty’s blog went out, within 24 hours, over 100 Scientologist “friends” unfriended me on Facebook. Only two asked any questions of me whatsoever. Many of these were people I’ve known for over 20 years. Apparently JoJo Zawawi, a covert OSA operative, contacted all of my Scn FB “friends” and told them to unfriend me.
Then I found out that the DSA of CCI was calling my friends and students (I am a vocal coach) into ethics and showing my goldenrod declare, and telling them they are not allowed to associate with me anymore. One such student was having so many wins that we would both cry after each voice lesson because she handled so many barriers that neither of us could believe it!
Here is an excerpt from a success story from her…
“In about a month after learning the basics of Joy’s special vocal technique I discovered that ever since I started with Joy my throat has never hurt any more (so I cancelled my Dr’s Appointment as there was nothing to complain about)”
“…I have only been working with Joy for a few months, I cannot imagine what can be achieved in a year, she is just so absolutely amazing and fabulous. I believe she can help any singer to achieve their true potential.”
And then excerpts from her disconnection letter:
“I was asked to go in Ethics today at CC and read the declare on you as CC knew you were my teacher”
…I am very upset that I cannot continue working with you, I really love you and hope this gets handles in one way or another and I can come back to you. I am very sad to lose you as my teacher and my mentor as you have done so much for me…”
…The church does not allow me to continue being connected with you, and I am sure you understand. Even though we are taken apart for the time being, I still have nothing but respect and admiration for you as a being and nothing (not even a declare) can take that away…”
This was one of many students who are now no longer able to work with me as a result of this covert, black PR campaign against me. As a result I have lost a great deal of my income, not to mention my heart.
It would be very easy to be angry and hateful towards the loyal followers of DM’s church who have turned their backs on us, the truth is I feel very, very sorry for them.
Despite the arrogant valence of rightness most of them are stuck in, they are, in actuality, poor, duped victims, whose original intention was to dedicate their lives to helping their fellow man. By their own misguided trust and blind faith, they have allowed themselves to be manipulated so thoroughly, they can’t see that the Church they are fighting for is what is eating them alive. They are not helping mankind – they are sinking into unconsciousness; unaware of the criminally false statistics, abuses, mind control and theft that are being perpetrated on mankind. And so they are contributing to it, unknowingly.
There is a line in one of my original songs, ‘Moth To A Flame’, which states,
“Through your seductive smoke, I can finally see,
The darkness I tried to escape was the shadow you cast over me.”
I believe David Miscavige has cast his degraded shadow over LRH and it is my job to do what I can to expose that.
We, who have endured the pain of disconnection and loss and harassment are the lucky ones. We have superficial wounds. We have retained our clarity, our integrity and our eternity. They have forsaken theirs by refusing to see. We must continue to tell the truth here so that somehow, they might read one of our posts and walk back into the light.
I consider myself infinitely fortunate to have had the clarity, for whatever reason, to see the church for what it is, not what it used to be nor what I wish it was. The confront it takes to be willing to “have” that reality is what I believe LRH really wanted us take from his teachings.
Until this letter, I have made no official public declarations of my resignation. I was never shown a single KR (knowledge report), never offered a Com-Ev (Committee Of Evidence) was never officially contacted regarding my disaffection nor was I shown my Golden-rod Suppressive Declare Order. I was simply and covertly declared a suppressive person. This occurred long before I became as outspoken and aggressive as I am now.
After I started losing my friends, family, clients and business associates I became very vocal about my disgust, but I still had not put it in writing.
Well…HERE IT IS IN WRITING!!! BAAAMMM!! Take THAT David Miscavige.
Love to ALL
I came into Scientology because I imagined a better world. I would like to believe we all came into Scientology for that reason. To end my declaration, I would like to share with you my version of John Lennon’s “Imagine”