02 April 2012

Left hand, right hand, Aleister, Ron

This from the comments thread to this post by Village Voice editor Tony Ortega. For those not aware, Marty Rathbun was previously the 2nd-in-charge of the Church of Scientology, and he has since split from that organisation, denounced its leader David Miscavige betraying the legacy of its Founder and running slave-labour camps, and is attempting to start his own Scientologist International, with blackjack, and hookers, and e-meters. (So, these guys are to the Tom Cruise church what Protestants are to Catholics, or Trots are to orthodox Communists.)

I post this as a counterbalance to my recent positive-sounding ruminations on Rathbun's independent Scientology. I think perhaps my ego continues to have a sneaking regard for the subject because it would love to, as Scientology promises, be able to solve all its own problems using rationalism and without surrender. However, I am still intrigued by what seem surface similarities between Scientology and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - in that both claim to be able to "deprogramme" the subconscious mind by extracting, looking at and then "as-is"ing rules of behaviour and assumptions about reality. This "tech" doesn't require an empathic or transference relationship with a therapist, only someone to guide the patient/preclear's self-analysis, a job which can be equally well done by a computer.

Other points: given the points raised about Ron's insane bullshit auto-hagiography, others have pointed out that this is yet another link showing his debt to Crowley. Thelemites have often argued with me that Uncle Al did that deliberately - throwing insane grandiose lies into his writings just to see who'd be enlightened enough to realise they were bullshit. I don't credit Ron with that much self-insight. I also note the points made by other commenters on this thread that Rathbun seems much more interested salvaging those people damaged by the Miscavage/Cruise regime than repackinging "LRH tech" for the broad masses.


One thing that the Scientology Cult fears the most is that the common-sense parts of what is called "auditing" - which exclude trickery and coercion, and exclude subtle psychological manipulation and overwhelm, such as found in the Auditor-Code-violating "Implantology levels" - be recognized and used in a free fashion by independent counselors.

Skydog 7 hours ago
I have to think Rathbun must be a little frustrated at his current predicament. He is trying to defend a subject which is indefensible. I do agree with his premise that Miscavige is doing all in his power to portray Hubbard as a fraud. Fortunately, I did not watch the entire three hour video extravaganza that is the 2012 birthday celebration. Three hours is a long time for decent movie and the thought of watching and listening to the dropout dwarf and mullet head for that time would no doubt lead me to at least suicide ideations, if not attempts.  

The words of LRH [L. Ron Hubbard] go beyond "tall tales" and amount to fraud. Recently, someone asked me why or how anyone would ever get involved in this cult? My response was simply ego. It is a religion marketed on the promise that their "tech" can solve each and every problem-emotional and physical-that plagues the initiate.  The promise of immortality and super powers are powerful motivators for the vainglorious with large amounts of disposable income. These dupes are secure in their belief that the large donations made by them will ultimately contribute to their further success and give the the "super power" that they know LRH possessed. Absent in this fraudulent conduct is any "science" to back up their ridiculous claims. When challenged on this point, they point to faith.

  • Well said. This is precisely why Scientology is not an authentic religion. Authentic spiritual practice is about getting free of your attachment to thousands of ego-desires, not the amassing of power to control everyone and everything to your liking.
    This is authentic spiritual freedom and enlightenment that lies at the heart of the great spiritual traditions of the human race. It costs nothing.
    True spiritual freedom cannot be bought and yet demands that you surrender everything as you burn up your ego-desires in prayer and meditation in the zendo, church, synagogue, mosque, or temple.
  • Some of the very good research in this subject describe the effect of the great spiritual traditions as moving from a dualistic (egoistic) mindset to a nondualistic midset (no "I versus you" dichotomy). 
    Part of this also involves moving to direct unqualified life experience as opposed judgmental qualified experience.  This has been described as presymbolic, or beyond vocabulary.
    So Hubbard, by invented an entire new vocabulary and forcing his members to constantly look up words, he is pushing them back to a dualistic "pigeonholing" experience of life.  This is the opposite of what you're supposed to do.  I see no way around LRH's tech putting people at risk for insanity.
    But that's what you get when you trust a charlatan with your soul.
  • You are describing the "right-hand path." L. Ron Hubbard was a master of the "left-hand path." See http://carolineletkeman.org/sp/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1364&Itemid=92 and http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2012/02/scientology_and_4.php.
    Most Scientologists don't see themselves as following a left-hand path, however. Letkeman explains: "For its members, Scientology does not qualify as a valid left-hand path.
    Their members are lied to about the true sources of Scientology doctrine
    and about the qualifications and true background of its founder.
    ...  A left-hand path designation can only be assigned to those members in Scientology who are fully cognizant of Hubbard’s sources and true intent. Scientology’s upper management is cognizant of the exact left-hand path that Hubbard left for them—it cannot be other than this. It is only these small few that can legitimately claim to be following a left-hand path."
  • I'm aware that Hubbard practiced black magic, although it is interesting that he wasn't trying to pass that "expertise" on to his followers; rather, he implemented mind control mechanisms. 
    But what I was referring to is the research done on people who have had enlightenment experiences (and there are quite a few).  These were all on the "right hand" path of experience.  The descriptions of peaceful well being are fairly uniform.
    I'm not aware of any research done on the success of "left hand" practitioners, other than the examples of people who seem to have gone insane from the practice, like Hubbard. But I'd be interested in any references:)  That Letkeman article was interesting.