My story by "Insightful"

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Patty Pieniadz


Posts: 22

Joined: Fri Feb 29, 2008 7:38 pm

Location: New London, CT

Post Mon Oct 26, 2009 11:24 am

My story by "Insightful"

This story was sent to me by an Ex Scientologist that want to remain anonymous. I have agreed to post their story and have given them the
nick of Insightful. I'm sure they will be watching the board for feedback.

As the anonymous person sends me more of their story I will post it for them

Copyright 2009 by the Author


Early 1980's

I do not remember what month it was when I, at the age of 19, joined staff for the first time in a Church of Scientology. Actually, I joined staff in a Scientology "mission", which has a lower classification than an "Org" or a "Class IV Org" as they were then called but are now called "churches". A mission was permitted to deliver only introductory Scientology services, not the higher level of counseling known as "auditing." The story of how I came to be on staff is worth having a look at, and in fact I am going to relate a bit of my upbringing so it can be understood where I was emotionally, mentally and intellectually at the time.

I had been raised in a Roman Catholic family with many children, myself placing towards the end of the bunch. My father was of Eastern European extraction and had the very old fashioned mind set that he ran the family and that everyone else in the family, from his wife to the least of his children, were to recognize his authority and obey blindly anything and everything he said. His choice of discipline was physical punishment.

Since I was not the oldest child and had several siblings ahead of me, by the time I was born and toddling about they were old enough to be creating the problems that young children do and were already earning the attendant physical penalties.

I am not going to elaborate on all of the brutality that I experienced and witnessed, but as a means to promote your understanding I will give you two examples. When I was six years old and my younger brother was 5, my father took an object and beat him with it so thoroughly that one of my older sisters has had nightmares throughout her life that my father is killing my brother. During this incident, I was made to sit on a couch and watch. Another time, when I was seven, I'd committed the horrendous act of accidentally breaking a milk bottle, for which I was beaten so badly that I lost consciousness.

Now, just so you don't think my family was some crazed anomaly living in the ghetto somewhere, let me tell you that my father was a respected business owner in the community, a Rotarian and accomplished pianist and organist who played weekly at our church and taught Sunday school to the unfortunate children whose parents could not afford to send them to private, Catholic schools which I and my siblings attended through elementary and high school. We lived in a large house with many bedrooms and bathrooms and each of my parents had their own cars, which back then was not common, and we never wanted for clothing or food. My mother was also a great contributor to our community, church and school and was very sweet in temperament and a complete door mat to my father. In later years she often lamented what she had allowed our father to do to us kids. When she died unexpectedly at barely fifty years of age, five priests performed her funeral mass and she received so many flowers that the funeral home had to open a 2nd section of the viewing area in order to display them all.

During the beating that my father delivered to my brother, when I was sitting on that couch in what I can only think now was stark terror, I remember formulating the thought that I hated my father. I remember it clearly to this day, and I am now in my mid- forties. That was the moment when I hated him, in all his 6'2" glory beating the life out of a boy that barely stood above his knees. I think before that I had only feared him; in fact I went through a phase when I was about three years old where I was unable to speak in his presence and this condition has spilled over into the rest of my life where it still affects me today. When I am extremely upset I go completely mute. I may want to speak about whatever problem I am experiencing, but I am unable to do so, sometimes for days. This is a condition called "selective mutism" and is a psychological response to emotional trauma. I did not learn this fact in Scientology.

So I and many of my siblings had a rough time growing up and, as can be predicted, many of us didn't make it to adulthood sound of mind and stable of emotion. By the time I was 12 years old, I was a mess. I did drugs; I had learning disabilities (which in those days were rarely diagnosed or accommodated - people just treated me like I was stupid despite the fact that my IQ had been measured as 126 at the age of 5); I was withdrawn and socially awkward; I had an on and off again weight problem until I hit my mid-teens, wherein I lost weight (reference the drugs), became suddenly beautiful and then, completely unable to deal with the attendant attention from every male walking, became a clueless whore.

The only good thing about me was that I passed through the above stages rather quickly. For example, as I said I started doing drugs when I was 12 (it was the mid 70's and one of my older brothers in high school was dealing), so by the time I was 18 and had been arrested a couple of times, lost a boyfriend to a drug overdose, another friend to a car accident where he inexplicably ran into a tree, and another friend to suffocating on his own regurgitation while passed out on his back, I was pretty much done with drugs. My whore phase didn't last more than a couple of years, either. And I must say that in those days though I had a lot of sex, I was capable of feeling from it absolutely nothing.

By the age of 18 I was done with drugs, done with being a whore, unhappily surrounded by others who were doing drugs and being whores and had attained the age of adulthood wherein my father said, "You have to move out." I was working a low paying job, could not get into college since doing math was nearly impossible for me and had no idea where I was going to go or what I was going to do. Then I met a man I'll call David.

David was ten years older than me. He lived in a town about 50 miles away from my town and the minute he saw me he latched on. He did not do drugs and had a steady well paying job; he was not good looking but he did offer me a place to live far enough away from my home that I took him up on the offer and took off.

David was in love with me. I probably said I was in love with him, but in truth I don't remember and I doubt it. David had a darling little apartment, a steady job and a calm, stable life and one of the first things he shared with me when I moved in was a small poster with cutesy drawings demonstrating different emotions listed in chart format. The emotions were organized from very low, like "grief", to very high, like "exhilaration." I listened and looked at it and thought it interesting. I did not, however, become too excited about it and I could see he was disappointed in that. He tried to relate to me how important this chart was in life; in his life. I listened, but I guess I did not give him the reaction he wanted, so eventually he told me why the chart was so important to him. David, I learned, was a Scientologist.

* * *

For the first year that I lived with David, he tried diligently to interest me in Scientology. At that time it wasn't calling itself a straight out religion and we never referred to it as the "church"; it was always the "Org." I was told on one of my many visits for a sit down chat with some staff member trying to "enlighten" me, that Scientology was an "applied religious philosophy." These words seemed meaningless to me and I had no interest in involving myself in religion at that time as I was still suffering the effects of nuns and daily mass and enforced sacraments; all of which, in my mind, were tied to my father's violence and perceived hypocrisy: this man so admired in our community for his selfless and "religious" acts was nothing less to me than a monster.

The receptionist at the Org was a woman named Joanne who was married to the one trained auditor (Scientology counselor) in the building, whose name was Scott. Joanne was smiley and outgoing and I genuinely liked her. Scott was surly, but a nice guy once you got to know him. Joanne was the person who sat with me one evening and explained to me the difference between an "applied religious philosophy" and a straight out religion so that I could grasp those differences and understand that Scientology was not to be equated with any idea of religion I may have previously formulated.

I didn't bite on this explanation, so they told me I needed to do a personality test, to which I agreed. My understanding was that the test was developed at Oxford University, which I now believe to be untrue, and it consisted of a list of dozens of questions about your behavior to which you answered "yes", "no" or "some of the time." It took a long time to fill out, and when I had completed it they took the test and used my answers to chart a graph. This graph had sections like "stable" "happy" "responsible" etc., on it and its purpose was to show your strengths and weaknesses.

The graph was divided horizontally into three sections and if points of your personality fell below the middle section it indicated a weakness in this area: if it was high, it was strength; if you were in the middle that was relatively normal. The high and low points also related to one another but in any eventuality my graph seemed to puzzle Joanne, who looked at it and then took it to Kevin who then took it to Scott who returned the graph to Joanne. I was told it was a very good graph: my graph line ran pretty much in the middle with no extreme highs or lows. So that didn't work out too well for them and it was suggested that I take an IQ test.

So I took the IQ test, which was timed and very short and easy, and when the results from that came back it showed I had an IQ in the 160s, which I could not believe at first but it didn't take me long to accept the fact that I was, indeed, a genius.

The results of the testing left me feeling complacent, but I still didn't want to get involved with Scientology. Not only was I not interested, but David's mother hated the fact that he was involved with the group and pestered me consistently to do what I could to convince him to give it up.

David then started bringing home books. The first was "Dianetics", which I read partially and then lost interest. (The Scientology explanation for this would be that I had misunderstood words within the text and that is why I gave it up.) The next book was "Science of Survival" which I tried to read but I remember thinking it made no sense at all and I abandoned it rapidly, against David's angry remonstrations.

I'd just turned 19 and was working in a clothing store making little money and itching to do something with my life; but I had no idea what. David's good friend who lived across the hall from us was a crazy guy named Gregg who was a real alcoholic but still young enough that it hadn't completely corroded his life. He introduced me to Mad Dog 20/20 which is truly the most putrid liquid you can put into your body but it got me drunk out of my mind quite rapidly. Some days when David was at work Gregg and I would drink Mad Dog and run errands (I don't think he even worked so don't ask me where we were going or what we were doing.) We had some hilarious adventures, which really pissed off David and eventually made me realize that I had to get serious about getting my act together.

So one day I called my mom for advice and she convinced me to go to the state University and enroll in some classes. I was interested in literature and was a decent writer and could, she said, obtain any of several degrees, getting tutoring help with the math in order to pass the classes. (I have no deficiencies in understanding languages; it is only math that seems to stick up my brain.) She also reminded me that one of my cousins was attending that same University and suggested I call her for help and companionship.

When David came home that evening I told him of the conversation with my mother and how I thought it was something I needed to do. I told him I was going to start making calls the next day and see about getting enrolled. Much to my surprise, this did not please him. He launched into a diatribe telling me how stupid I was, how I couldn't even concentrate long enough to read "Science of Survival" and how college was a waste of a person's life. I was really stunned by this because we had been having conversations for weeks about how I wanted and needed to get my life together and I had explained to him that I wanted to do something more meaningful and self-fulfilling.

That night we went to bed in angry silence. The next day I went ahead and called the University and spoke with the admission's office, giving them my address so they could send me an information packet. I called my cousin, but she wasn't in. When David came home I could see that he was still angry when he asked me to sit with him so we could talk it out; but instead of talking he said I needed to go to the Org with him right away; right then.

Going to the Org was the last thing I wanted to do, but he asked me to do it for him. He said they had information they wanted to share with me about modern day colleges and the least I could do, for him, was to accompany him and listen to what they had to say.

So, we went to the Org.

That night Joanne had a talk with me about my ideas on going to college during which she showed me some of L. Ron Hubbard's writings on the subject. I don't remember the exact words that I read but I do remember how they spoke derogatorily of college and education in general, about its uselessness in the real world, about professors in their Ivory Towers who were out of touch with reality and didn't teach anything of actual use to an individual. Then she addressed my reluctance to give Scientology an honest chance, suggesting that if I really wanted to improve myself and do something worthy with my life, I should at least look down all avenues available.

I really did want to improve myself and I really did want to do something meaningful with my life. Additionally, I figured that if I actually took a course I would be on firmer footing when talking to David about leaving the organization. I wasn't sure I believed all they had to say about the worthlessness of college, but I did agree that I should at least form my opinion of Scientology based upon my own experience. Within minutes I had signed up for an introductory communication course and a few minutes after that I was sitting in a chair staring at a person across from me doing the first of many, many sets of what is known as the "TRs."

* * *

The person across from me was a tall, gangly man with dark hair and beautiful brown eyes and a persistent, throat clearing cough. His name was Kevin and he was the husband of the Executive Director of the Org, whose name was Barbara; a red haired exuberant, aggressive woman whom I'd met only in passing but she always showed a broad smile and seemed quite warm and real.

Kevin was very animated when he spoke, gesticulating and waving his hands, and he, too, had a terrific smile. He told me to read about the first TR, which I did, and then he sat me in a chair and tried it with me.

TR 0, as it is called, is designed as an exercise in confrontation; it is just two people sitting face to face looking at one another without flinching or squirming or doing anything that might be interpreted as discomfort or an unwillingness or inability to simply confront.

Kevin said, "OK, Go," and we started staring at each other. Within seconds he said, "Stop," so I stopped. He was "coaching" me so it was his place to instruct me and call me out when he detected a lack of confront on my part.

"You're not hypnotizing me," he said. "Your eyes are like this," and he widened his eyes crazily. "Just look at me. Just confront."

So I thought, ok, fine. I'm just looking: just confronting. Kevin said, "Go" and we started again. Within seconds he said "Stop."

"What?" I asked.

"You moved your arm," he said.

I thought 'big deal' but he explained to me that my arm moved because I was using it as a "via"; in other words using my arm to confront instead of just confronting. I was not exactly sure how one can use one's arm to confront something but I said "ok," and we continued, and this is pretty much the way the rest of the session went.

"Go." "Stop. You're wiggling your leg." "Go." "Stop. You twitched your finger." "Go." "Stop. You're squirming in your seat." "Go." "Stop. You blinked."

Now when he said I blinked I was really taken aback. Of course I blinked. It's a natural physiological function: I had to blink. But no, I should not blink. He gave me something to read about blinking during the TR (it may have been called "blinkless TRs") which I read and though I was somewhat mystified I was also willing to accept the challenge. I had to sit and confront him to his satisfaction for a specified period of time, (how long I don't remember), in order to receive a pass: no twitching or squirming or confronting with other body parts or blinking. And I did. We worked on it for a couple of hours but by the end I had sat in that chair without moving or blinking, just staring into his returned gaze and finally he said, "Stop. Pass. You did very well."

I was so pleased with myself as I carried on through the course, doing the different drills that progressed from just confronting another person to handling active communication, for example getting an answer from someone who is not answering your questions or not reacting to someone who is deliberately trying to upset you in some way.

This latter TR was called "bull baiting" and the first time I did bull baiting I did it with a guy whom I did not know who started out saying innocuous things like "You seem to be kind of snotty," and progressed to saying things like, "You have really nice tits," which I objected to but the Course Room Supervisor, who was Kevin, explained to me that I had to take whatever the guy said to me and learn to confront it with no reaction. I did not like it because the guy got really crude and I felt that in life I wouldn't just sit there and let some moron talk to me that way; I'd distance myself from him in a heartbeat. But in the class I learned to just sit there passively no matter what he said to me and eventually I was given a pass.

After the TR class I enrolled in the ARC Triangle class, ARC standing for "Affinity" "Realty" and "Communication" which was explained as a basis for all relationships (if I remember correctly. I no longer have any Scientology references so am relating things straight from memory) and a tool to be used to improve and understand relationships.

From there I continued to take introductory courses. At that time, all of these courses came straight from the Volunteer Minister's Handbook, which I'd had to purchase for myself at a cost of over $100, much to David's chagrin. When I was done with the introductory courses I was ready to move up to higher level teachings and I had my first true Scientology "Reg (soft "g") Cycle".

The Reg cycle. Oh, how your everyday Scientologist hates the Reg Cycle.

The person within the Scientology organization who signs people up for courses is known as the "registrar". The word "cycle" is used in Scientology to indicate an action undertaken by someone. There are very specific Scientological definitions for the usage of "cycle" like a "cycle of action" having a beginning, a middle and an end; so if someone takes up some activity and does not complete it then they didn't complete the cycle. Or if you are engaged in some activity and are finished, then you have "ended cycle". If someone wants you to do something and you're busy, you would often say, "I'm already in cycle." A Reg Cycle is when the registrar sits you down and, having predetermined what it is they want to sell you (or register you for), proceeds to involve you in a "cycle" of grueling, hard sell, take everything they can get from you tactics in order to "encourage" you to take your next step up their "Bridge to Total Freedom," more commonly referred to simply as "The Bridge."

"The Bridge to Total Freedom" is a layout of all of the courses and counseling steps you must take in order to make yourself a completely free and in control spiritual being. Only Scientology has the "Bridge to Total Freedom." Only by taking Scientology courses and receiving their counseling (which they call auditing) can you achieve true universal enlightenment, fix up all of the things that are wrong or bad (or "out" as they say) within yourself, and truly attain your potential. And there are many, many steps required to fully cross this bridge. And, they are progressively expensive.

Joanne the receptionist, who was also a reg, wanted me to move on to taking some counseling steps up the Bridge called the "Grades." There were four of them, I believe, though this changed from time to time as "The Bridge to Total Freedom," I would soon learn, was nothing firm or finite. I was fine with taking these steps but it was David who had to pay for them and as soon as I asked him for the money he firmly refused. Did I mention he was cheap?

David himself had only recently finished his grades and though I don't remember exact figures I do remember that it was a few thousand dollars and he was absolutely unwilling to part with his dough on my behalf. Joanne regged him, and Kevin regged him and even Barbara, the Executive Director, stepped in and tried to get him to shell out the money, but he refused.

I was really quite upset with him at this point as over the course of time that I had been taking the introductory courses and being regged for further auditing I had been shown the Bridge and had fallen for the idea that if I did all of the steps on the Bridge, I would be a very cool being operating on a superior spiritual plane, obtaining all that I was capable of with a full understanding of myself and the universe and eventually, at the top of the Bridge, I would even be in control of the "life and death cycle".

I did have a bit of an obsession at that time with death which had started back in High School when my boyfriend had died. He was my first real love; I adored that guy. He had long hair and played guitar in a band. He was fun and happy all the time and didn't think about anything except what was making him fun and happy at that moment. He was so different from me, who could barely even experience happiness and was anxious and worried about everything from my father to starving African children.

We were together for over a year when he died, and we barely ever fought and I was always content when with him and him with me. Unfortunately, he also had some sort of blood disease that hospitalized him from time to time and he also did more drugs than me or anyone I knew at that time or in my whole life since. He would take anything anyone gave to him and pop it in his mouth. He would do LSD and Quaaludes and speed in one night. We went to a Rush concert once and he had to be removed after the show via ambulance because he had taken so many drugs he'd gone comatose. When one of the ambulance attendants asked me what he'd taken, I just stared at him. He'd taken everything!

Anyway, one weekend I went to a nearby college town to visit my sister and when I returned I was told that my boyfriend had died while I was gone. To add to the horror, we'd gotten into some sort of tiff before I'd left town and during our last phone call he kept saying he loved me and I'd refused to say it back to him though he'd asked many times. "Just say it", he said. But I did not. This made a real mess of me for some time thereafter but the crux of it was that he'd died so suddenly that I'd found myself fixated on the question: where did he go?

So when I was new to Scientology and learning about The Bridge I asked about their theory on death and it was Kevin who finally pulled out a large red bound book that was used in auditor training and showed me L. Ron Hubbard's writings on death. I read about how beings are sent to earth and we live and we die and then we go to a "between lives area" where we are spun around in some contraption in order to wipe out our memories and then we are sent back to earth and only Scientologist are aware of how this cycle works and of how to break the cycle.

There was more about death that I read but I don't remember it all. I just remember that I bought into it. I bought into their whole spiel about the life/death cycle and their special and singular knowledge and that each step up the bridge would bring me closer to that knowledge and control. So when David said he would not pay for my auditing I was desperate to find a way to continue up that Bridge.

The next time I sat down with Joanne, trying to figure out how I was going to get my Grades, she had a solution. The best thing for me to do was to join Scientology Staff.

* * *

1 This was the "Emotional Tone Scale": a very important tool in Scientology. "Love" is one emotion that is not on the scale.

2 This graph is used to show a person their weaknesses and then explain to them how "Scientology can help you with that." I would learn this later when I trained to be a "registrar."

3 David was not a college graduate.

4 TR stands for "Training Routine" and is a set of practices developed by L. Ron Hubbard to supposedly improve a persons confront of life and ability to communicate.

5 Blinkless TRs were being practiced when I first became involved with Scientology. They were later rescinded as being incorrect and people were allowed to blink again during TR 0.
Education is not a hate crime.-- Anonymous


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Post Mon Oct 26, 2009 7:29 pm

Thanks for this part of the story, Insightful, and thanks to Patty for posting it. Hope to see the next installment soon.

My understanding was that the test was developed at Oxford University, which I now believe to be untrue ...

Almost certainly this is just another of LRH's many deceptions/lies. He knew the name "Oxford" had prestige and decided he might as well borrow it.

That night Joanne had a talk with me about my ideas on going to college during which she showed me some of L. Ron Hubbard's writings on the subject. I don't remember the exact words that I read but I do remember how they spoke derogatorily of college and education in general, about its uselessness in the real world, about professors in their Ivory Towers who were out of touch with reality and didn't teach anything of actual use to an individual.

Scn knows all about being "out of touch with reality" and "uselessness in the real world."

See how LRH used Oxford for its prestige but then badmouthed university education? He got a fake degree from a diploma mill called Sequoia University, and for a time assumed the title "Dr. Hubbard." He also boosted his personal PR by claiming to be an engineer and nuclear physicist.

He actually earned a doctorate (of hypocrisy). :P
Enjoy your life today,
For time is fleeting.

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