From International Viewpoints (IVy) Issue 57 - May 2002
See Home Page at http://www.ivymag.org/
IVy on the Wall
by Ken Urquhart, USA
My Head in My Clouds
Chapter Ten in a Consideration of 'A Piece of Blue Sky' by Jon Atack
My Head in My Clouds
THE CORE OF JON Atack's message is that L. Ron Hubbard's public persona lacked authenticity: inevitably, therefore, his work could not possibly be legitimate.
The basis of Hubbard's claim for the legitimacy of Dianetics and Scientology consisted in the desirability and limited accessibility of the states of Clear and Operating Thetan, or OT. There were no comparable states, and no superior ones. The only way to arrive at them was through Dianetics and Scientology. Neither these states nor the ways to arrive at them had ever occurred before, nor would there ever be any alternative or better state or way. And there was no more valuable individual in the world than the trained auditor and his support, the Case Supervisor. They guarded the route to and the gates of the temple of Clear and OT.
While I intend to pronounce upon these states and attitudes towards them rather critically, I must at the outset clearly express one opinion about LRH's output: I do not see the Axioms of Scientology easily surpassed or superceded in relevance to the highest Truth in and about existence. It may well be that someone will arrive at an even more concise expression, but I doubt that any development of ethical and productive methods of improving conditions, in increasing awareness and ability, or of raising tone level, could possibly succeed without following them. Time will tell.
Hubbard first postulated, around 1950, that running all engrams on the case would produce the state of Clear. He was not able to demonstrate this in reality and he spent several years searching for alternate ways to reach a state he could call Clear. He claimed a number of successes in this regard but ended his search only with the introduction of the Clearing Course in 1964-65. He did not work on Clear further until the early 1980's, when considerable confusion manifested as to what Clear might be and who might claim it. This confusion he did not resolve.
His 1960's Clearing Course ('CC') required the pc/student to solo-audit according to very precise instructions, and to run material very precisely delineated. LRH's assumption, or certain knowledge (as you wish), was that we all had this material on our cases, and that erasing it would bring us to the state of Clear.
The state of Clear distinguishes itself in two ways: 1. It has many different definitions most of which are fuzzy and whose very number emphasizes their fuzziness; 2. for several hundred people, if not a few thousand, their moving into what they felt to be Clear marked a very distinct shift in viewpoint and beingness.
I have not done and don't intend to do a survey of Clears to observe how they experienced going 'Clear' and what it meant to them. However, I have my own experience of it. Since mine was a little unusual (because of my own error) I will relate it as being of possible interest, and relevant.
As mentioned, the CC consists of material laid out by LRH and which he insisted we adhere to. The entire CC consisted of this material repeated a certain number of times. One's becoming Clear was signaled by a change of awareness brought about by erasing the material. It was normal for people to run only a small portion of the material before experiencing the officially required awareness. As soon as they had, they could ask for a Clear Check. A senior technical person administered the check on the meter and passed or failed the supplicant.
My error was to assume that when I came to the right awareness, I would be called in for my Clear Check. It did not occur to me that I should ask or demand it. At the end of the first week of daily sessions, I had, and wrote down, at least a form of the new awareness. I waited for my folder to come back with the direction to go for the Clear Check. I was told to continue with the CC. So I did. I slogged my way through every one of the repeats of the entire material. At the end of the last repeat, I wondered what instruction my folder would come back with. Again, they told me to continue.
I dragged myself through one re-repeat of the material. Somewhere in the second or third re-repeat, I was looking and looking for what I was supposed to find. Suddenly, I found myself instead gazing intently at the roof of the house in which my body was sitting, and over the roof at the trees and hill behind which sat Saint Hill Manor.
Thus I came to my own self-doubt-proof certainty that something had completely and irrevocably gone and that I as a being had changed myself profoundly and eternally.
Now, I concede that as a loyal and devoted Scientologist I was committed to finding and achieving something called 'Clear'. I dutifully followed the steps which LRH promised would lead to this happy result. Having followed those steps, I arrived at a very happy but unexpected destination. I deny as absolutely as I can that I dreamt or hypnotized myself into something somebody else had designed for me.
What hit me as I recognized those black slates on the roof, was something I already 'knew' but which I could now experience at a profoundly deeper level. I knew, out of my very own knowing, with a certainty that came only from my own being, that I exist, that I exist as a spiritual being, that as a spiritual being I exist independent of and exterior to, my body, my mind, and to the agreed-upon reality of universe, that I am immortal.
It no longer could matter to me how I got there, nor does it matter now or ever. I don't care what adjective or epithet you apply to L. Ron Hubbard and all his works. I don't care how crazy it seems or how contrary to accepted whatevers, or how much it violates What Is Supposed To Be in the jolly, predictable, and comfortable suburbs.
I agree wholeheartedly that in and around the state of Clear there existed, and possibly still exists, a great deal of irrelevant nonsense. Let it be so. I won't argue that what I was doing through all those hours on the CC was not completely silly and a waste of my time. So be it. I celebrate my silliness. I came to my new, sharper, deeper, entirely self-generated awareness of myself and my relationship to Life. I came to it because LRH had created (in whatever manner for whatever reasons) the opportunity I took to arrive at my experience. I felt that LRH, in creating that opportunity, had proved himself beyond all doubt to be the very best friend I had ever had. And I extended that thought to make LRH potentially the best friend any being anywhere could have. Some disagree with that viewpoint - as they are free to do.
I cannot agree that in living life I might have come by myself to such an awareness. The idea is too absurd. When I was shepherded into Scientology in the 1950's I was helplessly and hopelessly incapable of any personal certainty whatever about anything, internal or external. I was by my own doing a thoroughly lost and broken being.
In LRH I instinctively recognized the core of sanity I have alluded to before. And it seemed that he made it available as a source of strength and stability, of decency and sanity. I reached out, grasped it, and, hanging on to it desperately, passed through my rough waters and arrived at the further shore. You may argue that my simple faith in him was all that was needed, that I persuaded myself he was my saviour and then I saw to it that I became saved: yeah maybe.
LRH's original vision of Clear was confused. It held a core of truth. It was something spiritual but it was also something mechanistic, a merchandising gimmick. He was drawn in both directions - the spiritual and the material - at once.
Once LRH had established his certain route to Clear he had to show what follows it. The performance of Clears, while nothing at all shameful, was not up to his (unreal) expectations. More work was to be done. And the paying customers had to have reason to persuade themselves to keep on paying. Thus the 'OT' levels above and beyond Clear. These levels, as in the development of Clear, have changed over the years, although the second and third remained constant at least up to the 1980's.
The definitions of OT direct one to the idea that one can do things as a spiritual being without having to use a body to do them - things that beforehand one could do only with a body. Each OT level had its own special result. One might be attracted by the possibility of achieving the promised result: I don't think much attention was given to that promised result once one had begun auditing it - one would be excited at doing it and completing it. Regardless, we all did the OT levels because they were there, and to not do them when one could do them violated our expectations of each other.
Those who anticipated possession of the alleged powers of the OT seem often to have imagined that they would demonstrate amazing capacities to move objects at a distance. I know of some who desired such ability in order to acquire power over others. In the overall scheme of things, such a view is childish and rather far from spiritual, in my opinion.
Is there a need?
I don't deny that spiritual abilities can and should develop. I'm certain that they will. How they should develop is a question we should consider with great care, and we should consider it in a context very remote from any that involves mercantile marketing or political power.
I believe that the subject deserves consideration within this framework: humankind lives in general within certain bands on the Tone Scale (or on whatever scale you wish). So does the physical universe. So does the universe that contains the physical universe. I believe also that humankind is moving up the Tone Scale. I consider the events of September 11th, 2001 and related happenings as confusion blowing off, as hitherto unexpressed resentments come to the surface. I sense, too, that the universe is beginning or resuming a movement upwards on the Tone Scale, as expressed by a shift to Solution away from Problem. I do not know if or how the larger universe is improving its condition but I do not suppose that we can change in here without a corresponding change out there.
The question of spiritual growth beyond clear, or beyond the individual's separating out newly from body, mind, and materiality, is inseparable from the question of how to facilitate, support, and enable the present upward movement on the Tone Scale. I say this because I agree with the original concept that connected further growth beyond Clear with action.
We need to bear in mind that the scope of our question might well have to include existences beyond the universe that contains ours, and indeed entire system or systems of universes, as well as whatever might lie beyond such system or systems, or Beyond Beyond. One can conceive of (even if not actually able to reach into) a level of existence so True it has no mechanics whatever.
I personally doubt that it is within the judgment of any individual to figure out what is the best for all these levels in the bettering of their respective conditions. I would seriously doubt the intelligence, integrity, or intention (not to mention the sanity) of any individual who presumed to pronounce himself capable of it. To me, it is a dual matter of partly getting our own lights to shine as brightly as we can get them to, and of helping others shine their lights better, and perhaps of shining our lights in concert. By `shining our lights' I mean simply to rid ourselves of untruth and to strengthen and grow our capacity to be the Truth that each of us is, individually and together.
I'd go so far as to say that this is what Life is to be all about in its next phase - which we are already moving into. Perhaps one should even say that we practitioners and supporters are amongst those leading the way into the new phase and helping to set it up for success.
I consider that as each of us on Earth more closely and purely approaches the Truth of who we are, we will become (naturally and spontaneously) more conscious of and sensitive to what is required of us to help Life move humankind up the Tone Scale and forward into a higher-toned way of living. And I believe that the space we create just out of who and what we are makes it much easier for all others, just getting into their stride, to soar. We are helping to create a safe and higher-toned space for the world to move forward into. As we do that, we affect the tenor and temper of our whole universe and then of the universe which contains it.
Opera in which space?
I do not share LRH's view of this universe as populated by distant large and powerful civilizations. I feel it very likely that there are very few, if any, other locations within this universe with populations intelligent or otherwise. I say this partly because I do not sense others' presence out there and partly because the physical factors that have to come together for life forms to develop are extremely sensitive to very small variations.
For example, were gravity only minutely more or less powerful than it is, the universe would be either tiny and sunless, or dispersed into gases. All other factors, I understand, are similarly precise, and there are six factors all told on which the universe depends. The odds against all factors coming together in such a way that life forms can develop are enormous.
To me, what LRH told of space opera on the track (that is to say, what he really recalled or perceived as distinct from what his fertile imagination dreamed up) was what he recalled or perceived of activities not within this universe but outside it.
In the same sense, I believe that sightings of UFOs and extra-terrestrial beings (I've never seen any myself that I know of) are, when they are real, contacts with beings and their vehicles that enter the space of our universe from without. The universe which contains ours has its own physics of which some people out there are doubtless the master. Their different physics allows them to penetrate and move about our space more easily than we can. For us, it is impossible (I'm told) to move faster than the speed of light. Those from outside our universe can move about within this universe as though in their own space with its physics, because our universe exists in their space and physics, and our universe is simply an extension of theirs. Our physics is not an impediment to their freedom of movement.
I presume that their physics allows them to move objects in their space without the use of bodies, and perhaps they can do the same in our universe, also using their physics rather than ours. It is possible that some of the paranormal abilities we sometime hear of within our universe occur because the perpetrator connects with the superior physics and operates with it to cause 'OT' things to happen, here.
I believe that people who report going to a different kind of place and meeting different kinds of people in near-death experiences are people who in some way pierced the veil separating our universe from its parent and have returned to tell the tale.
So, my belief is that LRH's vision of `OT' referred directly to activities and possibilities both past and present in the universe beyond this one, activities that normally don't and can't apply within the laws of this universe.
This is not to say that individuals in this universe cannot make the `impossible' happen
What can an `OT' do?
LRH once said, and I forget where, that auditing is what you can get away with. One way of interpreting this is that the client has a rate of speed of change that he or she is willing to experience - or to tolerate, as the case may be. If the practitioner tries to force this rate to increase, the client will manifest whatever he/she needs to in order to slow the practitioner down. Humankind itself has a rate of speed of change it can tolerate. When challenged with a demonstration it cannot not-is, that faster speeds of (spiritual) change are possible, humankind can react swiftly and violently. Crucifixion is a comparatively comfortable fate. Sometimes some brave or foolhardy souls risk being driven insane in their heroic efforts to hurry the pace of change.
LRH handed on to us two Golden Rules. One of them is to create only those effects that can be easily experienced. What can be easily experienced by the recipients is what they will let you get away with, when they have any say in the matter. We are considering here, with regard to OT, the question of what humankind (locally and generally) will let one get away with, what the physical universe will let one get away with, the immediately outer universe, and so on.
Humankind experiences easily that which is not too far from its accustomed tone level. The physical universe cannot let us monkey too much with the orderliness of time, space, mass, and energy; to contravene this orderliness is to deny the continuation of the universe, and such radical change it will not allow. I can't say what the next outer universe likes or dislikes, at the moment. However, we operate as OTs with considerable restraints, which is not necessarily a bad thing at all. It gives us a game, for one thing. The game becomes duplicating the existing condition and its limits, and then out-creating the limitations of current tolerance in order to push out the limits of the tolerance. We always assume that the present tolerance includes a little tolerance of a little stretching. This is a game of exquisite engineering, in which the engineering is one third science (or judgment), one third art (or instinct), and one third gambling (or, the spirit of play) - with each third essential to the whole.
It's entirely individual
My private and personal definition of OT (when I feel one is needed) is something like this: The performing of that wisdom, understanding, and integrity that brings about a rise in tone towards untrammeled Truth for individuals, groups, Mankind, Planet Earth, the Physical Universe, our system of Universe, all systems of Universe, for all Beyond Universe, and for Beyond Beyond - recognizing that every being is free to decide for self what Truth is and how he/she wishes to relate to that Truth.
The importance is in deciding for self what Truth is and how one relates to It. The magnitude of the effect is secondary. A hero can make noise that resounds through the whole of existence - without changing one thing for the better; a hermit in a cave can create such order that his presence settles, soothes, and inspires the whole of existence. Every action by every being acting out of his/her Truth helps, supports, enables, and beautifies all of existence.
I allowed myself a personal anecdote about my experience of Clear. Let me permit myself another with regard to my journey towards `OT.' It's a journey that just happened. It was not deliberately aimed at bringing me to anything. I saw something that needed to be done. I perceived it out of who and what I was, and I acted accordingly and naturally, without thinking about it. In doing so, I unconsciously followed my own definition of OT in my own small and lazy way.
I have to say that I have no way of asserting (and no intention of asserting) that what I will describe here has any validity of any kind. I took a journey that quite possibly happened only and entirely in my own head, nothing more than a fantasy affecting no person, thing, or condition anywhere else. I can't take it too seriously, therefore, and ask the reader not to either.
Some fifteen or so years ago I was pursuing my solo auditing, following NOTs procedures, which worked well for me. I used all the knowledge of the technology that I had. I was really doing a very expanded Step 28 of the NOTs Rundown. Although I audited regularly, I would also have long periods when I wouldn't think of having a session. Then, something would remind me, and I'd go back to it and find things to run.
After a while, I would go back into session and find nothing to run, but be unhappy at the idea of ending session. I focused on letting myself become aware of what might be happening. I'm a very firm believer in relaxing back into the truth. I opened myself up to whatever might be needing my attention, and found myself addressing beings that were not part of my own private universe (as has everyone doing this kind of session). Of course I'd come across these before, but now, for long periods, my sessions would consist of nothing else. I would go into session and the first communication was: 'Okay. Here I am. Who needs me?' I opened myself to whoever wanted to reach me with a request for help.
I addressed I don't know how many beings frozen in time in very different places. Many were beyond this universe, and further beyond - a total of five beyonds, and then beyond universe altogether. Soon there was no 'process' as such, merely a reaching through the being's mass and misconceptions to the Truth behind it all, at which point total duplication would occur and the being become free, clear, exterior, and in the present.
A few years ago I got the perception that I'd done enough of that, done all that was or could be expected of me - or caused all the change that could be tolerated of me on that level. So I eased off it. Of course I tell myself that this activity has value. I easily convince myself that I have substantially assisted Truth. Jon Atack considers it insane self-delusion. I have to agree that he's perfectly right. Here it is, raining cats and dogs, and I'm happily enjoying a sky that is enthrallingly blue. Wow! Fognition! This is the Piece of Blue Sky LRH sold me! Case closed. Thank you, Jon.
Wherefore Clear and OT?
Speaking only for myself as a practitioner, I find it almost impossible to conceive of delivering the equivalents of the CC and OT levels in an environment not highly structured and lacking the threat of sanction and expulsion. The evaluation that such material exists on every case is too radical an evaluation for me to impose on all. Without the hot-house atmosphere of the closed, secretive, and exclusive organization I don't feel one can impose the discipline necessary to train the clients to solo and to get them through such material. Besides, I do not have a large enough practice to make such training viable. I have never wanted a large practice. I am happy to help whoever comes to me; I have never been ambitious about the size and scope of my 'practice'. It is not within me to decide and pronounce on the relevance and reality now of the CC and some of Hubbard's OT levels. Others must do that. I would be sad to think that anyone who desires such results as I had from the CC and from Hubbard's OT levels, could not achieve them that way or some other way.
My attitude towards delivery of service that sets up an individual to solo on material similar to that of the CC and the OT levels is that I will consider it if asked to, and on a strictly individual basis but with considerable caution, step by step. It would be of great interest to hear how other practitioners approach it.
We've always had 'OTs' on Planet Earth. Some are famous and still known, some never known at all - people who were true to their own Truth despite the difficulty of expressing themselves in the restraints of their places and times. They deserve our deepest eternal respect. They never even thought about moving objects at a distance, too busy being true to themselves.
If the work of Hubbard helps you know your Truth and to honour it, use the tools he left us. If that work doesn't help you, don't use his tools. But by all means, know your Truth. It may be that when enough beings reach a high enough level of Truth their combined energy and clarity will be enough to pierce all veils and so begin a new phase of very rapid progress towards Truth for the majority, or perhaps all.
The being true to self out-creates the barriers his or her Truth requires him or her to tackle. Such a being does the most with the least through discipline, mastery, and focus. No being has to be a 'giant being': the only qualification is unrestrained Truth to Self, unambiguously and uncompromisingly True. If you're True, you're what I would call OT. When you're doing for others what excites and thrills your very soul to do, you're being True to you and to Truth, you and Truth are one. You find out that Truth has the purest, most generous, and completest trust in you.
Ride ‘em, Cowboy.
© 2002 Kenneth G. Urquhart