Tag Archives: Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior

Scientology Literacy and Blackmail

Scientologists take a great deal of arrogant pride for allegedly possessing the only effective technology for producing super literacy.  But is it super literacy or super literalness that it ultimately produces?  Try asking a dedicated Scientologist a simple question under oath where the honest answer might not make David Miscavige and Scientology out to be infallible, and you will understand the question I pose.  I have spoken to many journalists who have been driven around the bend dealing with Scientology’s form of super literalness.  Honestly review the  arumentation you have received, or even used yourself, from Scientology staff and field staff members, registrars, public and officials at mass events.  It is even omnipresent in the never-ending streams of publications spit out by Scientology organizations.

Here is an example of how this super literalness plays out in institutional behavior of Scientology organizations and how they interact with the world at large, from Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior:

“By way of example, until I just recently re-read the following Hubbard Guardian’s Office Order, I would have vehemently argued that Scientology and L. Ron Hubbard never countenanced blackmail.  Sure, they promote aggression, intimidation and fighting fire with fire, but just as surely not the commission of felonies as serious as blackmail. L. Ron Hubbard uttered the following on July 1, 1968, in a briefing to Mary Sue Hubbard about how her Guardian’s Office ought to be conducting itself:

We try to isolate who is creating the unrest and giving the orders. But even while we’re doing that, we try to collect “protective materials.” Archaeological and scientific and social studies might very well result in disclosing Mr. De Gaulle’s peculiar liaison with Hitler. That’s protective material.

All of a sudden somebody is jumping all over us in “Wango-bingo” and all it would take would be a quiet phone call. That’s one way to keep order. That is an intelligence method of handling things. It’s not blackmail, because blackmail is demanding money and that has nothing to do with it. “You jump on us, you’re dead”— that type of material…

…So, Mr. Big decides to knock us flat in Bongville. All of a sudden it cools by the simple reason that we already know that the head of the public health service at Bongville has three wives. What you normally do is leak it to him. Somebody goes out and has dinner with his daughter as a perfect stranger and says, “You know, I would be awfully careful of jumping on those Scientologists in Bongville if I were you. You know somebody ought to tell your daddy that there’s some wild rumor—of course, we don’t know what the truth of it is—that actually you have three mothers. And they know that over there.”

In the context of protecting the power of Simon Bolivar (read: L. Ron Hubbard) I understood this just as Hubbard said: “It’s not blackmail, because blackmail is demanding money and that has nothing to do with it.””

 

Scientology’s Power Doctrine

From Chapter 12, Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior:

The seventh lesson was explained and memorialized by L. Ron Hubbard in a thirteen-page policy letter entitled “The Responsibilities of Leaders.” It begins with a several-page essay summarizing the rise and fall of nineteenth-century South American liberator Simon Bolivar. Hubbard speaks of Bolivar in glowing terms: brave, dashing, and cunning.  He recounts how one of Bolivar’s many mistresses, Manuela Saenz, stood above all the rest. Hubbard then analyzes Bolivar’s failure to empower Saenz to use any means she deemed necessary to keep his enemies at bay, and how Saenz failed to demand or utilize such power. That, per Hubbard, was the reason that Bolivar and Saenz wound up dying in a ditch, penniless.

Among other things, Hubbard criticizes Saenz for the following faults:

…she never collected or forged or stole any document to bring down enemies…

…she never used a penny to buy a quick knife or even a solid piece of evidence…

…she was not ruthless enough to make up for his lack of ruthlessness…

…she never handed over any daughter of a family clamoring against her to Negro troops and then said, “Which over-verbal family is next?”

And so Bolivar and Saenz became victims of the petty jealousies and shortcomings of the mere mortals who surrounded the romantic couple. The policy letter concludes with three pages of Hubbard’s seven points about power to be learned from Bolivar’s life. They are offered as points one can only fully grasp if one has already learned well the six lessons of a veteran Sea Organization member, described earlier.  Those seven points about power deserve some attention here, for three reasons.

One is that Hubbard and his wife wound up living the Bolivar story Ron recounted as we shall see. Two, while adherence to the policy contributed to great strides for Scientology expansion, in Hubbard’s waning years the policy’s lessons had a backfire effect. Third, this one single writing would become the bible of his successors.  It would take precedence over all other of the thousands of pages of policy letters Hubbard had issued.

Here are Hubbard’s seven points concerning power:

One: …if you lead, you must either let them (those you lead) get on with it or lead them on with it actively.

Two: When the game or show is over, there must be a new game or a new show.  And if there isn’t, somebody else is jolly well going to start one, and if you won’t let anyone do it, the game will become getting you.

Three: If you have power, use it or delegate it or you sure won’t have it long.

Four: When you have people, use them or they will soon become most unhappy and you won’t have them anymore.

All very rational and sage so far.  But the final three points are a bit more complicated.

Five: When you move off a point of power, pay all your obligations on the nail, empower all your friends completely and move off with your pockets full of artillery, potential blackmail on every erstwhile rival, unlimited funds in your private account and the addresses of experienced assassins and go live in Bulgravia and bribe the police…Abandoning power utterly is dangerous indeed.

Then we graduate up to intrigue and believing that the ends must necessarily justify the means in dealing with any attempt to lessen a power.

Six: When you’re close to power get some delegated to you, enough to do your job and protect yourself and your interests, for you can be shot, fellow, shot, as the position near power is delicious but dangerous, dangerous always, open to the taunts of any enemy of the power who dare not boot the power but can boot you.  So to live at all in the shadow or employ of a power, you must yourself gather and USE enough power to hold your own – without just nattering (carpingly criticize) to the power to “kill Pete,” in straightforward or more suppressive veiled ways to him, as these wreck the power that supports yours.  He doesn’t have to know all the bad news, and if he’s a power really, he won’t ask all the time, “What are all those dead bodies doing at the door?”  And if you are clever, you never let it be thought HE killed them – that weakens you and also hurts the power source.  “Well, boss, about those dead bodies, nobody will suppose you did it.  She over there, those pink legs sticking out, didn’t like me.”  “Well,” he’ll say if he really is a power, “why are you bothering me with it if it’s done and you did it. Where’s my blue ink?”  Or “Skipper, three shore patrolmen will be along soon with your cook, Dober, and they’ll want to tell you he beat up Simson?”  “Who’s Simson?”  “He’s a clerk in the enemy office downtown.”  “Good. When they’ve done it, take Dober down to the dispensary for any treatment he needs.  Oh yes.  Raise his pay.”  Or “Sir, could I have the power to sign divisional orders?”  “Sure.”

And when one can develop that attitude and park one’s conscience when it comes to dealing with the “enemy” of the power one serves and from whom one derives his own power, the final point can be performed without a second thought.

Seven: And lastly and most important, for we all aren’t on the stage with our names in lights, always push power in the direction of anyone on whose power you depend.  It may be more money for the power or more ease or a snarling defense of the power to a critic or even the dull thud of one of his enemies in the dark or the glorious blaze of the whole enemy camp as a birthday surprise.

During my two years handling Hubbard’s communications to and from his messengers at the international Scientology headquarters, Hubbard withdrew further and further from the church.  I would soon learn the reason why, and play a central role in attempting to combat that reason.  As competing factions within the by-then sprawling international Scientology network vied for power in the larger-than-life vacuum left by Ron, he who adhered most exclusively and closely to the seven points of power from The Responsibilities of Leaders would emerge with all the power.

Reviews: Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior

There have been several reviews lodged at Amazon Books about Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior since an earlier post here on reviews.

The first half was very good and quite engaging. The second half spent far too much time on details in the the mid-80’s and seemed a bit self congratulatory over the authors actions that led to his rise in the church.

What we as outsiders really wanted to know was how people can get sucked into this cult and how those lucky few escape. I would find for instance, Katie Holmes’ story fascinating- though I’m guessing she’s not willing to take on Miscavige by opening up.

We can only hope that those within this “church” see the true Light.

–          Joanne M. Greene (New York)

I found Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior a great read. Although I had read the general history of LRH and Scientology in other books, this book had a lot of info I had not read before and it was surprising, touching, shocking, dismaying and thought-provoking through the twists and turns of the story.

It made me understand a lot more about how an intelligent person could get so deeply involved in Scientology, then Corporate Scientology. In this memoir you point out the traps, the rationalizations, and the cognitive dissonances as they occurred throughout your experiences within the church. It must have taken a lot to rebuild yourself after you left Scientology. Your insightful writing in the book and this blog shows that you did.

–          Kasey Briggs (Charleston, SC)

For those who either were involved in the corporate Church of Scientology or knew someone who was, this book catches and keeps your attention like good summer fiction while carrying with it important facts about the management and conduct of the church that were heretofore unrevealed.

Mr. Rathbun explains his own personal entrance and involvement in scientology while tracing his rise to the number 2 position in the church. To me, this was the most fascinating part of the read and helps explain how one could become so immersed in a cult with such a horrible reputation, and stay there despite inhumane treatment. Fascinating.

–          NoTeacherLeftStanding (Chesapeake Bay, USA)

The key to understanding this book is that its title is truthful: the author, while no longer a top official of the Church of Scientology, is — still — a Scientology Warrior. This is not of the “I-was-a-Scientologist-until-I-realized-it-is-phony” genre.

Rathbun is a true believer. He compares L. Ron Hubbard to the Buddha. His descriptions of Scientology’s teachings are supportive and sympathetic. He even seems to accept the Xenu story, suggesting that it is in essence consistent with Gnostic philosophy (which is true, though the same can be said more convincingly of Mormonism; in any event, Rathbun does not explain why the fact that it echoes a recurrently-popular idea over two thousand years old proves that it was a cosmic insight of L. Ron Hubbard). The books’ theme is that David Miscavige has perverted and largely destroyed a religion that could have brought wisdom and health to the world, mostly by defeating psychiatrists. Rathbun’s animus against them stems from his dislike of the psychiatrist who treated his brother, who was apparently psychotic; this is a principal subject of the book’s five introductory biographical chapters, which is, with all due respect, about three too many. They do explain, though, that like so many of the people who have joined and left Scientology Rathbun was a rootless child from a dysfunctional family who lacked education beyond High School.

Much of the book deals with Rathbun’s involvement in coordinating legal matters, mostly lawsuits against Hubbard and Scientology. Although he has no legal training his experience gave him a good understanding of litigation. His descriptions of law, procedure, and strategy, as well as of the kinds of debates and discussions that go on behind the scenes before and during trials, are accurate.

The book discusses a few of Scientology’s embarrassing episodes and acknowledges that they occurred with Hubbard’s knowledge and approval, and generally at his inspiration. But it presents them as unfortunate excesses committed as overreactions to nefarious acts of Scientology’s vicious and unprincipled “enemies,” including psychiatrists, law enforcement, and various state and federal government agencies. Rathbun tells us that he has seen documents proving that the psychiatrists, etc., did lots of bad things but that the documents couldn’t actually be revealed, you see, because even though they were stolen by Scientologists (one of those unfortunate excesses) to prove these things, revealing them would harm Scientology.

The book’s editors are Scientologist friends of Rathbun; his prose is clear and easily-read but a professional might have pointed out that it does not always recognize where real English stops and Scientology jargon begins. The proofreading is not perfect; there are, at least at the moment, a few typos and places where information is repeated, clearly inadvertently, but not enough to be bothersome.

–          Steve Harrison (Tuscon, Az)

An overall interesting book which started a little slow but picked up steam quickly and then maintained my interest until the end.

–          J.K. Kerlin (Durant, Ok)

It’s been roughly 3 weeks since I finished Marty’s latest book. I started on a Friday evening and finished the following morning. I made myself unavailable and unreachable until I reached the back cover.

The book answered all the nagging questions I had regarding what went wrong. Ironically, Hubbard said in an early lecture that every living thing carries the germ of its own demise. I believe Marty spots the germs Hubbard himself implanted – no pun intended.

But it also gave Marty’s very personal experience with how very right many core aspects of the subject are; and which kept him fighting the good fight. The parallels with my Scn-staff experience were many.

I had personally believed Hubbard missed or under-evaluated one axiom: “Absolute power corrupts absolutely” . But its never just one datum that derails a subject.

Thanks Marty. And as I keep an eye on your blog – I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Mosey. As tough as Marty is I have my doubts he could of weathered these last several years without you.

–          Dean J. Detheridge (Sydney, Australia)

This book is a must read for any looking for the inside story from one who was there.

The time line covered is one mans journey into and up to the upper management ranks, telling the story as it occurred for him.

It is an amazing account of what was going on behind the scenes in his personal, managerial and legal fields.

I have spent years digging into many areas covered in this book and find Marty’s telling of events to align with what I had independently found. It provides, fill in the blank pieces otherwise unavailable to any who were simply not there.

This is a valuable book to add to ones knowledge of the inner workings of Scientology’s management and legal arms and some of the real story of Ron Hubbard’s final days.

This is recommended reading for all who were there during those troubled times.

–          “Ann Howe” (USA)

Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior is a MUST READ for any current or former members of Scientology. Marty Rathbun goes into detail concerning the major legal situations that confronted Scientology in the 70s and 80s. Many of us in Scientology were told to ignore what was going on and were fed a public relations line about what we should think about the dirty and dark activities of Scientology. In this book we get the facts from a key player. The book is also an honest reflection on Marty’s many years in Scientology and, after time for examination, a clearer sense about L.Ron Hubbard, his life and technology. The information about LRH in his later years including his interview with one of the last people to live with LRH is page turning and enlightening.

–          Mark Fisher (Las Vegas)

For me, reading this book was a matter of stepping into a magical, parallel dimension. No other story I could compare it to as the writer’s life was so completely unique. Which has made the book unforgettable. To become aware of places or lives or situations I have never been or seen before, or conditions one is wholly unfamiliar with, is an expansion of livingness. The writer conveys this experience to the reader like a gentle wind. I found myself wanting to read it all over again.

–          Catherine (Las Vegas)

It takes Rathbun almost 50 pages to get to his first encounter with Scientology. On the one hand it is interesting to read about his background, so we know where he is coming from. But he does go into much unnecessary detail about his teenage basketball exploits and some other things as well. Rathbun spent his preteen/teen years in Laguna Beach California in the late 1960s to early 1970s and the area in that era is described far better in Orange Sunshine: The Brotherhood of Eternal Love and Its Quest to Spread Peace, Love, and Acid to the World. Rathbun is at times a good writer, but for a project such as this–a real book–as opposed to blog writing–I think he would have greatly benefited from a co-writer or editor experienced with the memoir/autobiography genre.

The experience of joining the Sea Org and what life is like there is described far better, far more compellingly, and much more interestingly in books like Marc Headley’s Blown for Good, Jefferson Hawkins’ Counterfeit Dreams, and John Duignan’s The Complex.

What “Memoirs” ends up being is a sort of (perhaps unintentional) attempt at a legal thriller. Much of the book is a fairly dull recounting of Rathbun’s role as organizer and coordinator of defending the COS against lawsuits. While not an attorney himself, Rathbun is put in charge of overseeing it all. But this is no “A Civil Action” or John Grisham novel. Much of it, as I said, makes for fairly dull reading.

Rathbun also spends a bit too much time trying to explain Scientology, and there is in my opinion too much space devoted to quotes from Hubbard, whether musings or Scientology “scripture”. That is not what I bought the book for.

But there are more than a few interesting passages, enough for me to give the book 3 stars. However I feel the book is a missed opportunity to get a really compelling behind-the-scenes look at the people and personalities that made up the top of the COS hierarchy. From the book: “I did not witness the Mission Holder’s conference first-hand, nor the Mayo-Nelson takedown. It would be years later before [I heard about it]…I was too busy fighting in the trenches, fighting the war…” Well, from reading the book, it seems that what Rathbun did in this war was deathly dull legal work, filing endless motions, that sort of thing. The COS spent millions defending lawsuits that they could have settled for a song, and Rathbun knows it. But he is powerless to change the strategy.

I was also expecting the book to be about Rathbun’s complete career in Scientology (the title suggests as much), yet the book ends upon the death of Hubbard. There is a short epilogue and Rathbun mentions that he has mostly written about his post-Hubbard Sea Org career elsewhere. I found this a bit odd; I suppose readers of Rathbun’s other two books won’t mind, but as I have not read them, I was left wanting less about his early, pre-Scientology life, less about the lawsuits, and more about the COS under Miscavige.

Rathbun himself is an interesting figure, no doubt. He comes across in interviews as soft-spoken, intelligent, and insightful. Yet he was a right-hand-man to the evil David Miscavige, and is pretty unapologetic about it all (only very recently, when he pretty much had to move away from his Texas apartment because he was being spied upon by the COS, did he say that it was sort of Karma what was being done to him).

–          Nytc7 (New York)

Graduation from Scientology

An alternate route to graduation from Scientology:

If you want to know what is wrong with Scientology, read What is Wrong With Scientology? (2012, Amazon Books)

If you want to know how that which is wrong with Scientology came about and why, read Memoirs of  a Scientology Warrior (2013, Amazon Books)

If you want to know the result of the what, how and why, read The Scientology Reformation (2012, Amazon Books)

 

 

The Bridge Beyond The Bridge

By Don Jolly in The Revealer: A Review of Religion and Media:

Mark Rathbun’s Search For the Future of Scientology

Graduating Scientology

A lot of what I do has come to be characterized by my wife and me as assisting folks to graduate above Scientology.   It is somewhat of a unique notion.  In fact, the vast majority of people who devoted much time to Scientology ultimately go through the graduation process;  reconciling what they learned and gained, differentiating it from the entrapment mechanisms involved, and finding ways to integrate with society, and to evolve and transcend as a person.  As far as Scientology-understanding assistance along that route, resources have been slim.

To date there has really only been a couple of paths for Scientologists and ex-Scientologists; at least ones that are assisted by Scientologists or ex-Scientologists who understand something about the subject.  Both avenues are of the least resistance variety; the easy, least effective ways that ultimately don’t lead toward graduation.

First, one can cling to his firmly held Scientology religious beliefs and continue with the installed cognitive dissonance that entails.  He or she can be guided to pretend that it is all ‘over-there’ in the church and play the ‘I am the resurrection of the real Scientology’ game.   That ultimately leads to a sort of bitter, secluded ‘victorious Confederate soldier’ megalomania and melancholy.  Second, one can be guided to redirect the implanted Scientology need for an enemy and spend years in a state of suspended enturbulation, senselessly flailing at the church or Scientology itself.  The latter route leads to much the same state of mind and consciousness as the former.

I think both routes are infected by perhaps the most insidious virus one is inoculated with in participating in Scientology.   That is the need to have an enemy.  I have written about this before, e.g. Cults, Enemies and Shadows.  It is a decidedly ‘effect’ state of mind; a continual restimulation of a paranoia about the external ‘true’ cause of one’s travails.  It does not lead to growth, evolution and transcendence in any sense.  It is like remaining in High School year after year, failing to evolve past the angst of adolescence.

There has been a tremendous amount of research done on stages of human growth; cognitive, psychological, moral and more.   This is research done by way of learning more about biology, and observing and interviewing tens of thousands of people for over a century.   It is not ivory tower ‘psych’ chatter.   James Fowler thoroughly studied this huge body of work and spent many years observing an entirely new category of development consistent with those already done on moral, biological, and cognitive bases.  His work was on the stages of development of faith.  Please read this excerpt from his book on the subject,  Stages of Faith, concerning the observed stage of adolescence:

New expectations, qualitatively different disciplines and a host of difficult decisions are the requirements with which societies greet the now more womanly or manly adolescent. In trying to meet and fulfill these requisites youth will call on the available and personally resonant ideological resources of their environments, particularly those that are embodied in charismatic and convincing leaders.  They will seek sponsoring groups and figures and will appoint otherwise well-meaning persons as temporary enemies over against whom their identities may be clarified.  They may band together in tight cliques, overemphasizing some relatively trivial commonality as a symbol of shared identity.  In this cliquishness they can be quite cruel as they exclude those who do not share this common element.

The Scientologist and ex-Scientologist adolescent pack mentality can be graduated from.  It opens up to view a wonderful horizon of possibilities and futures.  I think first and foremost it entails getting over the implanted need for enemies.

My Practice

My practice is grounded in client-centered education techniques.  That is not because I sought to duplicate them.  Instead, I recently came to learn that the way I coach and counsel toward recovery and graduation from Scientology was discovered and written about long before I was born.  Reading of it helped me to improve what I was already doing.  Carl Rogers covered this approach in his book, On Becoming a Person, explaining how educational techniques logically evolve out of client-centered therapy.

That I gravitated in this direction during my own recovery and graduation should be no surprise, given the authoritarian, religious discipline all Scientologists studied under for so many years.  The client-centered approach is tailored to consulting the understanding of the client or student.  In that regard, it radically differs from Hubbard’s training approach that was memorialized as follows:

If you can’t graduate them with their good sense appealed to and their wisdom shining, graduate them in such a state of shock they’ll have nightmares if they contemplate squirreling (defined as departing one iota from the letter of what is taught).  – L. Ron Hubbard, Keeping Scientology Working

That learning philosophy was explained further in Hubbard’s highest level instructions (Class VIII course) wherein he told the most advanced Scientologists that humanity was incapable of being appealed to through understanding; and so, instead, it was their duty to command people and make them ‘obey.’   (See Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior, Amazon Books 2012)

Irrespective of the fact that much of the technology such methods sought to impart was geared towards bringing a person to self-determined understandings, that system of indoctrination ultimately implants fixed, subjective ideas about living, God and ultimate spiritual concerns.  At the end of the day, the methods place a glass ceiling on growth (in fact create regression) by means of enforced belief that curiosity and thirst for continuing education inherently stem from aberration.

It may well be that I was also influenced in the client-centered approach through my own earlier education, some of which was influenced by, or was even attempting to experiment in, Roger’s educational recommendations.  The middle school I attended was a fail-pass (no grade), choice of curriculum, self-scheduling format with emphasis on consulting students’ interests.  I also attended a semester of similar organization at University of California Santa Cruz.  I never knew until I read Rogers where these ideas came from.  Perhaps my Scientology study contributed to this leaning too, since I have noted in the post On Becoming A Person, Scientology’s central practice (auditing) is a modified, structuralized form of Rogerian client-centered therapy.  No matter what led to which along this road, it is interesting to note how what gets around comes around.

Having studied all of Scientology and a great deal on the subjects that led to its development (including their continued evolution while Scientology has remained static), a simple, workable rule of thumb has materialized for me.  That is, the degree to which Scientology departs from its client-centered philosophical and technical roots is proportional to the degree it harms rather than helps.  This in large part has become evident to me in helping people who were disappointed with their Scientology experience over the past five years.  Almost to a one, somewhere along the line each individual’s intent and purpose for engaging in Scientology in the first place were tampered with, rejected and replaced entirely by imposed intents and purposes.

Somewhere along the line in the Scientology experience the magic of the technology – each of its efficacious results marked by its adherence to its client-centered philosophic roots – is replaced by inculcation of the client rather than consultation and service of his or her needs, wants, aspirations and purposes.  Those goals do, and ought to if a positive evolution of awareness and ability is being achieved, change along the road.   But evolution in Scientology is geared solely toward achievement of goals that do not involve the client’s participation in establishing, except to the extent means are employed to obtain the client’s agreement to pursue them.  The attainment of those implanted goals turns out to be purely subjective – no matter how clothed in science its claims and promises are presented.   An objective examination of the result of those who pursue the implanted goals to their ends – no matter how convincing its achievers may be in professing their alleged subjective feelings of happiness, power, ability and bliss of self-actualization – proves their actions often betray their vigorous assertions of equanimity.  For the most part they have turned their own self-determinism (the restoration of which is promised) over lock, stock and barrel to their teacher (See What Is Wrong With Scientology, Amazon Books 2012).  They will lie, steal, and cheat for their religion without a twinge of conscience – all while attempting to exude a vibrant, open, extroverted appearance. Thus, they cannot be trusted by ordinary mortals, not even by their mothers, fathers or even their children. In any values computation, their religion trumps conscience.  And thus the price of the ultimate ring in Scientology is the forfeiture of one’s conscience.

That result is patently evident from counseling a number of people who have completed much of, or all of, the Scientology route both inside and outside of Scientology.  To a one, of those who graduated and moved on, their departures from Scientology were occasioned by their consciences failing to succumb to Scientology demands that they be forfeited.  To a one, of the dozens I have counseled.  The top Scientology achievers who remain, who forfeit their consciences to achieve (or at least assert) the ultimate super human powers Scientology promises, are in the somewhat schizophrenic condition of apparently being as happy as hell but in fact having nowhere to go. The result is continued, slavish adherence to the goals and programs of an organization that – by the time it has ceased delivering client-centered techniques – offers no purpose beyond self-perpetuation and world dominance.  The resultant super-amped adherent’s course is described well by Abraham Maslow, as apparently a common result of many paths that lose sight of client-centered principles:

The better we know which ends we want, the easier it is for us to create truly efficient means to those ends.  If we are not clear about those ends, or deny there are any, then we are doomed to confusion of instruments.  We can’t speak about efficiency unless we know efficiency for what.  (I want to quote again the veritable symbol of our times, the test pilot who radioed back, ‘I’m lost, but I’m making record time.’)

Client-centered education begins with finding out where the interests and purposes of the student (client) lie.  One encourages open communication in that discovery process.  Viktor Frankl’s work Man’s Search For Meaning is helpful in that regard.  Knowing the individual before you proceed is essential in working to recover and strengthen that person’s determinism.  Omitting this step tends to usurp determinism.  One doesn’t rehabilitate and enhance the faculty of determinism by indoctrination that conflicts with the client’s interests and purposes.  For example, one does not force a student who is inspired by, inclined toward – and thus usually gifted in some way – the arts to become an arms manufacturing specialist.  Similarly, one would not attempt to enforce upon a person seeking spiritual awakening the behavior and habits of a para-military religious zealot.

A client-centered educator does not preach and teach as much as find out and only then guide. He puts more emphasis on assisting an individual in finding and following his own purposes and interests.  He then does what he can to help the person move along that chosen path with the best possible chances for success. He acts more as a facilitator than an instructor.  He operates more of a resources center than a rigid curriculum school.

I have been asked, and challenged, to publish the specific route I recommend several times.  I have tried to do that.  But, each time in the process I find myself thinking of particular individual whom I have assisted in the past and recognize that a given reference for that person would not be of interest or applicable to another individual I had worked with.  No two paths are exactly the same.   I have learned through life that to the extent one tries to convince you otherwise that person is trying to lead you to where he wants you to go – irrespective of how eloquently he might convincingly represent otherwise. To the extent one attempts to enforce one way for all, one deviates from the client-centered approach – and some other interest or evaluation is entered into the equation for someone to whom it may not apply or serve any salutary purpose.

There are a number of recommendations I have made in the recommended reading section of the blog that I find myself recommending over and over again to people.   For the most part those are applicable to the Scientology decompression and contextualization process, and lead toward freeing one from Scientology’s injunctions against exercise of conscience and awareness.  Most of them were chosen because of their effectiveness in expanding people’s intellectual and spiritual horizons after years or decades of having those horizons treated as forbidden terrain.

I am working on a book that will make many more recommendations for those seeking to move up the Scientology Bridge in an integral fashion (non-cult, integrated approach), and another for those seeking to move up from and beyond the Scientology Bridge.  In the meantime, I strongly recommend that those embarking on the Scientology path – whether in the church or out – read  What Is Wrong With Scientology?, before doing so.  It will help you avoid the pitfalls inherent in the system.