The Anderson Report
If one excludes as "research" the fanciful imaginings of Hubbard, his research material appears to have been almost entirely what preclears have revealed in their processing. Almost if not entirely subjective and based on subjective standards, the "data" which Hubbard uses is that obtained from preclears who, while in a state of hypnosis induced by auditing, or otherwise mentally conditioned by processed which produce hallucinations, imagine fantastic, ludicrous and unusual experiences and thoughts, whic h Hubbard accepts as conclusive proof and on which he builds his theories. The evidence before the Board shows that processing reports of preclears from the several countries where scientology is practised are sent to Hubbard in England where they are exa mined and collated and the results reduced to some order, from which Hubbard then draws conclusions or gets ideas.
Williams described the development of a particular process called, "listing", wherein the goals of preclears were being sought. He said that preclears were required to provide a list of about 850 goals. These lists were compared and it was found that certain similarities began to emerge. There were many other goals, said Wil1iams, "which were not in common, but there were certain plots of those goals that were in common. The strange thing was, even though a person did not know the plot, with very little steering they could originate the plot. This was rather peculiar. Unless there was telepathic communication, how did the person know of the plot?" The question was rhetorical but the answer obvious. Preclears in auditing session are in a highly suggestible condition, and a "very little steering" would go a very long way. There was an abundance of evidence that preclears came up with particular past experiences only after they had become aware of Hubbard's theories on that particular topic. Furthermore, it is probable that in a list of 850 goals there would be at least some which would be found in another list of similar size. The thoughts, hopes and aspirations of mankind follow a fairly common pattern and their similarity in different people does not require a fanciful theory that they were electronically implanted in thetans trillions of years ago. Early in their sojourn in scientology, preclears become aware of Hubbard's ideas on a great variety of matters, and the evidence shows that when being audited they obligingly provide "data" on these matters, which "data" is taken as confirming Hubbard's theories.
The power of suggestion on preclears is strikingly illustrated by the disclosures by preclears as to helatrobus implants. During 1963 Hubbard promulgated information concerning the helatrobus implants, stating the periods at which these implants were laid in. Thereafter, when preclears were audited on the helatrobus implant of the goal "to forget", they told of the implanting of that goal at some date between those indicated by Hubbard, namely, 38 to 43 trillion years ago.
A further indication of the dependence of Hubbard on the evaluations of preclears during processing is Williams' evidence on "theta traps". In A History of Man Hubbard, in writing of "theta traps", states:
"There is no subject more interesting than that of theta traps. It is of vast interest to any invader, It is of vaster interest to your preclear. How can you trap a thetan ? By curiosity, by giving him awards and prizes (of an implant), by retractor screens, by mock-ups, by ornate buildings which he will enter unsuspectingly only to be electroniced down; by many such means the thetan is reduced from knowing to a colonist, a slave, a mest body.Williams said in evidence that Hubbard had no other way of acquiring such knowledge about thetans than from what preclears had revealed.
All theta traps have one thing in common: they use electronic force to knock the thetan into forgetting, into unknowingness, into effect . . . The thetan feels himself, in some traps, being drawn up to a post. He fights it with his force. It cannot be suc cessfully fought. He succumbs. A day or a hundred years later, he is picked off and elsewhere used ... there was a theta trap called the fly trap. It was of a gummy material."
Hubbard's "research" is done at Saint Hill by himself and a small team of assistants. The facilities for "scientific research" into all the fields with which Hubbard claims great familiarity are very meagre.
Mrs. Williams, the most recently returned advanced Australian student to visit Saint Hill and to study there for about eight months, told the Board that "there is really not a laboratory at Saint Hill". He said that the manor house had three large halls and other rooms, a T.V. room, and a room with tape recording equipment, &c.; that the "experiments" comprised, in effect auditing experiments on the advanced students and a consideration of auditing results supplemented by reports from ,all over the world as to what has been produced by auditing in the way in which Hubbard has directed the auditing to be conducted; that Hubbard first puts
forward to the students at Saint Hill whatever is to be audited and when it is successful with them he promulgates it for wider application, even though at that time research on it may not have been finalized; that the student groups which are the subject of such tests at Saint Hill may contain up to about 100 students from various parts of the world, and that the staff consists of from thirteen to twenty individuals, functioning as instructors, assistant instructors, case supervisors, clerks, auditors, and others and performing associated duties.
Gillham, who was also a Saint Hill graduate, said:
"We never saw Ron actually engaged in research, but then, because, as I understand, a lot of research was done in the early hours of the morning, but from the fact that the course was going, was also part of the research programme, as he would observe stu dents and see what they were doing, and then, in his own time, what was going wrong and correct it, and I was there for that."Gillham did not know of anyone else apart from Hubbard who was engaged in research and, as far as Gillham knew, Hubbard's "research" was done in his own private room.
Mrs. Gillham, another Saint Hill graduate, said that the only research she observed at Saint Hill was amongst the students, and that:
"Sometimes Ron would say if he wanted to do research on a certain process and there was at one time a number of students selected to run this process, but the majority of research he gets Mary Sue [his wife] to run. So whatever he worked out, Mary Sue run s on him before he uses it."Mrs. Tampion, who also was at Saint Hill, said that the research there consisted of
"auditors, pc's and students running new processes on each other to see how they fared".How Hubbard, without laboratory, equipment or scientific assistants, could carry out experiments in all the sciences in which he claims to speak as an expert remains unexplained.
Notwithstanding the absence of such indispensable aids, Hubbard claims that all his work in dianetics and scientology is validated by scientific proof and, early in the Inquiry, Williams went to great lengths in evidence in an endeavour to explain and pr ove that Hubbard and scientology proceeded by the scientific method to experiment, test, evaluate, prove and draw justifiable conclusions. However, his evidence was purely argumentative and mere empty words and no evidence in fact was called which remotel y suggested that there was anything scientific - or for that matter any real method - in Hubbard's experiments and "research".
One witness, a former ardent scientologist, and now a bachelor of science, who languished in the slough of scientology for a few years during which his University course was halted, had the opportunity of observing at close quarters the validity of Hubba rd's claims for scientology. His verdict was, "unproven, a lot of words, no evidence".
Hubbard makes claims that he has the proofs, that these proofs are inWashington and elsewhere, that his books and other writings tell of his experiments and their results. Judging the standard, value and extent of his research methods by what he has chos en to make public in his books and other writings, Hubbard fails ignominiously. Several expert scientific witnesses gave evidence to the effect that Hubbard's methods as revealed by his writings have not the slightest resemblance to scientific method.
Experts in many scientific fields criticized the so-called scientific method and research of Hubbard, and out of the evidence which the Board heard emerged the following criticisms, with which the Board wholly agrees: -
- Hubbard is satisfied with, and regards as sufficient, subjective standards of proof;
- He does not test the data obtained by subjective means even when there are means of objective testing; e.g., Hubbard's claims as to exteriorization could be tested objectively, but no such tests appear to have been undertaken. Hubbard and a scientolo
gy witness claimed that scientology processing could add 30 pounds of weight to a body by mocking up a mass and bringing it into the body. The Board invited the scientology interests to arrange a demonstration, but the invitation was declined;
- He does not give sufficient detail to establish the validity of his conclusions;
- There is no confirmation of any of his findings by experiments carried out by other workers in the same field;
- The experiments are not described and there is no way of testing his conclusions;
- The material which he uses is -
(a) not capable of being tested,
(b) obtained under conditions which do not admit of any control or check,
(c) necessarily suspect for the reasons, amongst others, that it is generally obtained from persons who are hypnotized or who are in some illusory state, and to whom suggestions have frequently been made;
- A great part of the material relied upon is no more than categorical pronouncements by Hubbard without any suggestion that there is any evidence to justify them;
- An enormous proportion of Hubbard's so-called evidence, alleged results of experiments, findings and conclusions is totally at variance with orthodox theory and actual known facts which are the results of scientifically conducted experiments made under proper control conditions and capable of being duplicated, tested and confirmed.
Each new "discovery" he hails as the ultimate, the final "breakthrough", the answer to all problems, requiring only that auditors develop sufficient skills in the techniques he has devised to "clear" the world. Yet very soon that "breakthrough" is superseded by another, more wonderful and more promising than the last. And so it goes on.
Reliance on the data provided by preclears in auditing, where hallucinatory images are generated, does not of course bear any resemblance to scientific method. Yet it is on such a foundation that Hubbard has built the whole structure of his teaching. In A History of Man, which Hubbard claims is "a cold-blooded and factual account of your last sixty trillion years", Hubbard writes the most fanciful nonsense. Examples of the material contained in A History of Man and on which Hubbard based his "research" are set out in Chapter 11. Hubbard published this book in 1952, before the Piltdown man hoax was exposed. In it, Hubbard writes,
"The Piltdown contains freakish acts of strange 'logic', of demonstrating dangerous on one's fellows, of eating one's wife and other somewhat illogical activities. The Piltdown teeth were enormous and he was quite careless as to whom and what he bit and often very much surprised at the resulting damage. Obsessions about biting, efforts to hide the mouth and early familial troubles can be found in the Piltdown. It is a wonderful area in which to locate GE overt acts."How preclears could recall "real" incidents which could not have happened has yet to be explained by scientology. Hubbard's research on the Piltdown man is surely a hoax upon a hoax.
It is the claim of scientology that it must be valid because it works, the test being "workability". In Dianetics: MSMH, Hubbard wrote -
"The only test is whether or not a fact works. If it does work and can be used, it is a scientific fact. And the prenatal engram is a scientific fact. Tested and checked for objective reality, it still stands firm. And as for subjective reality, the acceptance of the prenatal engram as a working fact alone makes possible the clear."Hubbard finds his proof of workability in the claims made that preclears frequently say they feel better after auditing. Leaving aside for the time being the likelihood that post-hypnotic suggestion may well explain a preclear's statement that he feels better after auditing, workability of itself really proves nothing. This is evident from, for example, the research of Freud whom, incidentally, Hubbard acknowledges as one on whose work he has drawn. Early in the history of psycho-analysis his experiments led Freud to regard recent sexual trauma as being solely responsible for the production of hysterical, neurotic symptoms, He noted that, when his patients recalled a sexual trauma, they tended to lose their symptoms. However, Freud soon noticed that the "cures" were not permanent and he then assumed that the symptoms might have had their origins in more distant sexual traumas. When he investigated this theory he found that patients reported sexual traumas occurring in adolescence and that when they recalled those incidents their symptoms disappeared, but these gains likewise tended to be temporary. Further experiments which brought to light sexual trauma experienced in early childhood once more brought in its train some relief, often only temporary, of the patient's symptoms. However, Freud found that, in some cases where patients reported such incidents as having occurred in early childhood and they appeared to be benefiting from this recall, there was no possibility whatsoever that the incident could have occurred. This, "workability", the fact that a patient may benefit from "recall" of an incident which did not happen, was no proof that the incident happened.
As already mentioned, Hubbard's acquaintance with Freud's work appears to be very superficial and to be confined to Freud's early writings. If Hubbard was aware of Freud's later work and theories, in which Freud later considerably modified his earlier tentatively propounded theories, Hubbard entirely ignores them, for whereas Freud accepted the position that temporary relief was experienced by conjuring up incidents which did not happen, Hubbard wrongly treats the hallucinations of the preclear in relation to things that could not have happened as conclusive proof of such happenings, and on this entirely unwarranted assumption he bases the great bulk of his theories and teachings on the thetan, the time track, past lives and many other fantasies.
The following extracts from Dianetics: MSMH illustrate the nature of Hubbard's "experiments" and the standard of his research. They are examples of how engrams are said to be acquired; one relates to engrams said to have been received at birth and the other relates to engrams said to have been received during a dental operation.
Hubbard considers that "birth is a very aberrative affair"; and to make his point tells of the case where, by processing a patient on his birth, it was established that
"his asthma had been caused by the doctor's enthusiasm in yanking him off the table just when he was fighting for his first breath. He had had conjunctivitis. That came from the eye drops. He had had sinusitis. That had come from the nose swabs used by th e pretty nurse."The second case is described in the following terms:
"Let us make this an example: a man is under nitrous oxide (the most vicious anaesthetic ever invented as it is actually not anaesthetic but a hypnotic) undergoing exodontistry. As usual everybody present around the 'unconscious' patient chatters and yaps about the patient, the weather, the most popular movie star, of baseball. The exodontist is a tough character, bossy to the nurse, apt to be angry about trifles; he is also very sympathetic toward the patient. The nurse is a blue-eyed blonde, who is sexually aberrated. The patient, actually in agony, receiving an engram amongst engrams which may ruin his life (terrible stuff, nitrous oxide; really hands out a fancy engram as any dianeticist can attest) is unanalytical. Everything said to him or around him is taken literally. He takes the valence of the exodontist as both the top valence present and the sympathetic valence. But every phrase uttered is aberrative and will be interpreted by that happy little moron, the reactive mind, on the order of Simple Simon who was told he had to be careful how he stepped in the pies, so he stepped in them carefully. These people may be talking about somebody else but every 'I' or 'he' or 'you' uttered is engramic and will be applied to others and himself by the patient in the most literal sense. 'He can't remember anything' says the exodontist. All right, when the engram keys-in, this patient will have an occlusion on memory in greater or lesser degree. 'He can't see or feel it': this means an occlusion on sight, pain and tactile. If the patient has his eyes watering in agony at the moment (though completely 'under') he may get actual bad vision as well as poor visual recall from this experience. Now they put him in the hands of this blonde nurse to let him sleep off the drug and recover. She is an aberree amongst aberrees. She knows patients do weird things when they are still 'out' so she pumps him for information about his life. And she knows they are hypnotic (yes, she sure does) so she gives him some positive suggestions. Amusing herself. She says he'll like her. That she'll be good to him. And stay there now for the present.
"So the poor patient, who has had two wisdom teeth, impacted, taken out, has a full anger-sympathy dramatization. The general tone he takes is the tone the exodontist showed to the others in the room. The exodontist was angry at the nurse. With his recalls all messed up, the patient a few years later meets a woman similar to this nurse. The nurse has given him compulsions towards her. The silly little moron, the reactive mind, sees in this entirely different person enough similarity to create an identity between the nurse and this new woman. So the patient divorces his wife and marries the pseudo-nurse. Only now that he has married the pseudo-nurse the dental engram begins to key-in in earnest. Physically he gets ill: the two molars adjacent to where the wisdom teeth came out develop large cavities and begin to rot (circulation shut down, pain in the area but can't be felt because there's a pain recall shut-out). His memory goes to pieces. His recalls become worse. He begins to develop eye trouble and a strange conjunctivitis. Further (because the dentist leaned on his chest and stomach with a sharp elbow from time to time) he has chest and stomach pains. This nitrous oxide hurt his lungs and this pain is also in chronic restimulation. But most horrible; he believes that this pseudo-nurse will take care of him and he stops to some degree taking care of himself in any way; his energy dissipates; and analytically he knows it is all wrong and that he is not himself. For he is now fixed in the valence of the exodontist who is angry with this nurse and so he beats the pseudo-nurse because he senses that from her all evil flows. The girl he married is not and was not the nurse, she sounds something like her and is a blonde. She has her own engrams and reacts. She attempts suicide.
"Then, one day, since this is one engram among many, the mental hospital gets our patient and the doctors there decide that all he needs is a good solid series of electric shocks to tear his brain up, and if that doesn't work, a nice ice-pick into each eyeball after and during electric shock, the ice-pick sweeping a wide arc to tear the analytical mind to pieces. His wife agrees. Our patient can't defend himself; he's insane and the insane have no rights, you know.
"Only the cavalry, in this one case, arrived in the form of dianetics and cleared the patient and the wife and they are happy today. This is an actual engram and an actual case history. It is a sympathy engram, pro-survival on the moronic reactive mind level".