Excerpt from Chapter One of The Enemy Formula:
The Zen of Basketball
Zen: A total state of focus that incorporates a total togetherness of body and mind. Zen is a way of being. It also is a state of mind. Zen involves dropping illusion and seeing things without distortion created by your own thoughts. – The Urban Dictionary
Caveat emptor (buyer, beware). I may be crazy – and this book of my recollections therefore may just be laced with delusion.
It all depends on whether you buy into the genetic theory of mental health. That is the school of thought that maintains we are simply organisms, unthinkingly carrying on the genetic, cellular commands we are born with. That is the very theory that L. Ron Hubbard eschewed in developing Scientology. Scientology is predicated upon the idea that the spirit (called thetan in Scientology) and its considerations are senior to the mind and the body, and that ultimately every one of us is capable of sanity and of becoming the captain of his own destiny – irrespective of genetic or biological make-up.
The church of Scientology has apparently done away with such core Hubbard principles. Corporate Scientology leader David Miscavige sent my former wife to Clearwater Florida to visit reporters Tom Tobin and Joe Childs of the St. Petersburg Times (now Tampa Bay Times) in mid 2009. She came with a script to read to the reporters, one no doubt carefully crafted by Miscavige himself. It would be Corporate Scientology’s answer to an interview I had given, exposing a culture of violence created by Miscavige at the highest levels of his church.
In embarrassed, halting phrases my former wife told the reporters that I had a family history of insanity and the “church” was concerned that I had picked up the insanity gene. When the reporters attempted to make some sense of the relevance of those claims, my former wife, on cue, stood, turned and walked from the room, noting with finality, “This is not a deposition; I’m not here to answer questions.” When official Scientology spokesperson Tommy Davis was confronted with the claims I’d made about violence in the church, he shouted, with veins popping from his neck, “Marty Rathbun is a fucking lunatic. He’s psychotic!”
Miscavige came up with this brilliant public relations move based on an analysis of my church counseling folders. Those folders note, in meticulous detail, every significant event of my life, and of many prior lives as well. It is a policy of the corporate Scientologists to find bits of embarrassing confession from a former member’s past, and then allude to one of these bits publicly. The hope is that the target will quail, for fear of any more particulars being revealed.
In order to erase any influence such attempted blackmail might otherwise have, let’s get right to the heart of Miscavige’s allusion to the matter he seems to believe is my Achilles’ heel.
Insanity runs deep in my family. My mother received multiple electro-convulsive shock therapy treatments while pregnant with me. I found that out through Scientology counseling which probes into pre-natal, and even previous lifetime, incidents of the being. I told my Scientology counselor that I recalled my mother being taken off to a private psychiatric facility while I resided in her womb. When she was hit with electro-convulsive shock I, the spirit, was hurtled out of the body and witnessed the rest of the ‘treatment’ from above looking down at the psychiatrist and his assistants and my mother’s body strapped to the table. When the violence was over, I contemplated leaving and finding another mother and another fetus to occupy. But, my conscience struck me and I decided I would weather the storm, stick around and help the mother I had initially chosen. When I was in my early thirties I told my aunt about these recollections and her jaw dropped. My descriptions of the facility and the surrounds and the event were accurate in all details. And that, in essence, is Scientology Inc.’s blackmail on me: I am a lunatic by virtue of carrying my mother’s genes, complicated and compounded by my fetal electro-shock experience…