The Anderson Report
THE TEACHING OF SCIENTOLOGY
The formal teaching of scientology in Victoria is conducted at the Melbourne HASI in two separate divisions. A limited amount of instruction has been given at both the Geelong centre and the Hawthorn centre. At the HASI the elementary instruction is done in the personal efficiency department, and the more advanced teaching is done at the Academy of Scientology, which at the commencement of the Inquiry was in premises at 2 Coates Lane, Melbourne, but has since vacated those premises and is now at 157-159 Spring Street, Melbourne.
Great efforts are made to get persons "on course" at the HASI. Though individuals may initially attend the HASI only to be tested or for the free lectures, their thoughts and inclinations are skilfully channelled towards the various courses which the HASI conducts. These courses train them to be auditors, at the same time indoctrinating them in scientology theory and principles.
The HASI takes care to ensure that any advertising which is addressed generally to the public contains no reference to scientology theory or any of the advanced techniques. It is almost entirely confined to the "We can improve your condition," "We can make you more able," type of advertisement, in which the fact that the initial lectures are free is stressed and IQ and personality tests are recommended. Such advertisements appeared frequently in the daily metropolitan newspapers and in suburban newspapers, and also in some periodicals. A substantial proportion of the advertisements were inserted in newspapers by "The Melbourne Test Centre," an adjunct of the HAS1 and one of many business names used by the scientologists at 157 Spring-street, Melbourne. In 1961 the daily metropolitan press refused to accept scientology advertisements. Posters have also been exhibited in trams, and slides shown on theatre screens. Pamphlets have been distributed and are available at the HAST to any who care to take them. The Geelong and Hawthorn centres have advertised over the radio. The aspects of advertising are dealt with elsewhere in this Report (See Chapter 15). Advertisements with a scientology content are addressed to a more limited class, namely, persons already in scientology, or merely on mailing lists kept by the HASI. A name may find its way onto such a mailing list on the slightest pretext; its inclusion does not necessarily indicate any association with scientology. A regular means of disseminating scientology material and of advertising more advanced courses is the monthly magazine published by the Melbourne HASI, entitled Communication.
Personal Efficiency Courses.
The public advertising seeks to encourage people to attend the free lectures, which constitute an initiation into scientology and are part of the personal efficiency course which is run free of charge and is one of the main avenues for introducing people to scientology. Another important avenue is through recommendation by people who are already in scientology. Those attending the lectures are made to feel welcome, called by their Christian names and addressed by carefully selected instructors whose competence lies in their ability to arouse interest in scientology and procure submission to auditing and enrolment on paying courses. The PE course is considered of prime importance as, in Hubbard's words, it procures "bodies for the shop." The personal efficiency department has a director, a registrar and other staff members.
The audience generally contains a large proportion of people who are anxious and inadequate, who feel insecure or are unable effectively to cope with their environment, and the lectures are directed towards instilling self-confidence and an ability to face their environment without fear. The audience often includes persons who are anxious to improve themselves or are desirous of undergoing some form of business training.
About 4,000 persons have taken the PE course at the Melbourne HASI, and it is said that at the end of the course only 1 per cent. have filled in report forms which were unfavourable. The Board is unimpressed by this figure, which does not deal with equivocal answers and, in any event, relates to alleged benefit received from what are probably cleverly delivered lectures with conventional but elementary psychological content and negligible scientology content. Such benefits are comparable with benefits derived from lectures given in the friendly atmosphere of a club or similar institution to people who want to be cheered up and encouraged.
During the PE course the instructor explains that the principles and practices of scientology are aimed at making a person's environment less confused, and if those attending feel they have received benefit from the course and want to benefit still further, they are informed there are courses in scientology which they can embark upon, the next course being the Hubbard Apprentice Scientologist (HAS) Course.
In the PE course, "scientology" as a word, and something more, is cleverly introduced, the E-meter is referred to, perhaps even produced for inspection, and there is talk of IQ tests and personality tests which earlier formed part of the free PE course. (These tests were formerly free, but, from August 1963, they have been part of the HAS course, and fees have been paid for tests). These IQ and personality tests figure prominently in scientology, and are often used to deceive a person as to his state of mental health and to create a feeling of inadequacy and anxiety. The evidence shows that these initial tests are deliberately used to make the individual uncertain and anxious and predispose him to undertake scientology processing or study on the promise that scientology techniques can improve some undesirable trait supposed to have been revealed. These tests are conducted by inexperienced persons, who neither understand what they are doing nor appreciate the significance of the results which they obtain.
The second course is the HAS course of two weeks duration, three nights a week, and the fee is £5. It includes lectures on listen style auditing, the students being told that listening is helpful, and they practise listen style auditing on each other. They are introduced to Sharpe's book This is Life. As appears in Chapter 23, "listen style auditing" can be accompanied by grave consequences to individuals in certain conditions of mental health.
The HAS course is followed by a further course, HAS Course 1, which is conducted three nights a week for four weeks, and the fee is £10. During this course the student is taught the scientology principles of affinity, reality and communication, the eight dynamics and the auditor's code, and he practises more advanced auditing techniques on his fellow students. The successful student obtains a certificate stating that he has passed the HAS Course at Class 1 level.
Academy of Scientology.
Courses beyond the HAS Course 1 are conducted in the Academy of Scientology, which also has its separate director and staff. The courses normally conducted at the Academy are the HQS (Hubbard Qualified Scientologist), HCA (Hubbard Certified Auditor) and HPA (Hubbard Professional Auditor.) As from the 2nd July, 1964, the fees for the HQS Course were £40 cash or £44 on terms, and for the HPA Course £140 cash or £160 on terms. A further course, to be known as HCS (Hubbard Clearing Scientologist), is in contemplation. This will be more advanced than the HPA Course.
Before a student is accepted for a course at the Academy he is given a security check. Likewise, a security check is given to a preclear before he is accepted at the Hubbard Guidance Centre for processing. These security checks are designed to ensure a favourable predisposition towards Hubbard, scientology and its imagined efficiency. For such security checks the E-meter is used. (See Chapter 24 as to some types of security checks.)
At the Academy, a student is trained in various drills which Hubbard claims to have developed. The first of these is TR 0, entitled "Confronting Preclear," this drill being developed by Hubbard "to train students to confront preclears in the absence of social tricks or conversation and to overcome obsessive compulsions to be 'interesting'." Instructions for conducting this drill are as follows:
"Have student and coach sit facing each other, neither making any conversation or effort to be interesting. Have them sit and look at each other and say and do nothing for some hours. Students must not speak, fidget, giggle or be embarrassed or anaten. It will be found the student tends to confront with a body part, rather than just confront, or to use a system of confronting rather than just be there. The drill is misnamed if Confront means to do something to the pc. The whole action is to accustom an auditor to being there three feet in front of a preclear without apologising or moving or being startled or embarrassed or defending self. After a student has become able to just sit there for two hours 'bull baiting' can begin. Anything added to being there is queried by the coach with a 'What happened?' Twitches, blinks, sighs, fidgets, anything except just being there is promptly queried with the reason why, if necessary. TR 0 has been divided into four parts. Each part is drilled for about 15 minutes in turn and then begun over again and again.""Bull baiting" is, as its name suggests, an activity designed to provoke the student to display some resentment at the manner in which the instructor is treating him. Training drill TR 0 is divided into a number of parts, and in one of them directions are given that "the coach may say anything or do anything except leave the chair. The student's 'buttons' can be found and tromped on hard." In this context, "buttons" means something about which the student is sensitive.
The second drill is TR 1, and is entitled "Dear Alice." The purpose of this drill is to "train the student to deliver a command newly and in a new unit of time to a preclear without flinching or trying to overwhelm or using a via." The procedure in this drill is to require the student to read to the coach a phrase from Alice in Wonderland. This book is chosen because it offers the greatest choice of nonsensical statements. The student is then required to repeat the phrase
until such time as it is his own, that is, until it appears to emanate entirely from him. Part of this drill is a command by the coach to "create the space of the coaching session by locating 4 points in front of you and four points behind you."
The third drill, TR 2, entitled "Acknowledgements," is conducted with an E-meter. This drill was developed by Hubbard to teach the student that "an acknowledgement ends a communication cycle and a period of time, that a new command begins a new period of time." In this drill, the coach reads lines from Alice in Wonderland to the student and "the student thoroughly acknowledges them."
The fourth drill is TR 3, entitled "Duplicative question," and is designed to teach the student "to duplicate without variation an auditing question, each time newly, in its own unit of time, not as a blur with other questions, and to acknowledge it. To teach that one never asks a second question until he has received an answer to the one asked." This drill trains the student to repeat the same question for hours at a time, without any variation. These repetitive processes in auditing are one of the many disturbing features of scientology techniques . The student practises this drill with such questions as "Do fish swim?" or "Do birds fly?"
In the fifth drill, TR 4, which is a development of TR 3, the coach endeavours to digress, and the student is required to handle the situation as he would with an obstructive preclear in an auditing session.
The foregoing information on the training drills is contained in HCO Bull. of the 29th April, 1963, entitled "Modernized Training Drills." There are other drills, numbered 6 to 9. These are repetitive drills which condition the student to audit preclears with similar repetitive processes.
These drills have produced in students who have undergone training some astonishing quantities which were later apparent in some of the witnesses who gave evidence before the Board. Scientology-trained witnesses generally "confronted" the Board and spoke directly and clearly. With an air of apparently complete sincerity and frankness they were able on occasions to talk utter rubbish, to persist in it and to seek by illogical argument to justify nonsensical statements. What they were saying on many occasions was untrue, though it may be that they believed it, and one hesitates to brand as perjurers a number of individuals who, while apparently normal in other respects, did not appear to know the meaning of truth when they came to speak on scientology. As mentioned elsewhere in this Report, their capacity for almost ecstatic sincerity was heightened in a number of cases by the fact that they had undergone processing only shortly before giving evidence.
The HQS course is either a full-time day course of a month on five days a week, or an evening course of thirteen weeks, three nights a week. In this course, which is at Class 2 level, the student learns verbatim the Auditor's Code and the Code of the Scientologist. These codes are respectively Appendices 14 and 15. He receives a general background knowledge of the theory of scientology and is able to apply the easier scientology procedures.
The Hubbard Professional Auditor (HPA) Course is an intensive course which often takes students a year or longer to complete, though a student may qualify in three months. Even when the course has been completed and the student has been successful, he does not receive his certificate entitling him to practise in his own right as an auditor until he has been security checked and is regarded as satisfactory from a security point of view. One requirement, before a preclear can advance beyond a particular level, is that he should "cognite" on everything scientological up to that stage, and a failure to satisfy the organization that one has a reality on all relevant scientology theory to that stage delays the issue of the HPA certificate.
The HPA course is designed to instruct the student in all aspects of auditing; a large part of the course is devoted to instructing the student in the operation of the E-meter.
Various processes in which the student is instructed are dealt with later in this Report. (See Chapter 13.)
Saint Hill Training.
The ambition of the dedicated scientologist is to visit Saint Hill Manor, and there do an advanced course conducted by Hubbard himself. A variety of claims are made for the efficacy of a Saint Hill course. It is said Saint Hill trained auditors are clear or nearly so, they alone can audit to OT, they alone can be entrusted with the most advanced techniques. Elsewhere in this Report are other references to Saint Hill and the activities which witnesses who had been there were able to talk about. It seems that at least nine scientologists have gone from Victoria to Saint Hill for such advanced courses, at a cost of £358 12s. each. The cost of the course, which did not include
fares and living expenses, has been borne by the student in question, or partly or wholly by the Melbourne HASI. In cases where the HAST has contributed to the cost of the course, the student has been required to enter into a bond to serve on the staff of the HASI for a specified period on his return from Saint Hill. (See Chapter 8, as to research at Saint Hill.)
These advanced courses, termed "special briefing courses", are attended by as many as ninety students at a time. They come from various parts of the world, including U.S.A., South Africa, South America, Greece, France, East Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and England.
Indoctrination in Scientology.
Training as an auditor involves quite intensive study of scientology theory and a large amount of practical work in which students audit one another in co-audit sessions and undergo other individual auditing. The discipline is firm, almost harsh, with heavy "infractions" for slight transgressions. As the student aspires to be HPA (Hubbard Professional Auditor) it is impressed on him that he is now a superior type of person who is leaving behind mundane considerations which preoccupy the despised homo sapiens. Advancement and success are dependent on the complete acceptance of scientology theory. Before commencing the professional courses (i.e., above HAS) one necessary qualification is "Complete subjective and objective reality on the entire scope of the Science of Scientology." This involves accepting without question or reservation-or what is called "cogniting" upon-not only those items of scientology theory mentioned in this Report but much similar additional material.
The oppressive processes of auditing, with their repetitive and searching procedures, produce, in the case of a person who is already mentally or neurotically disturbed, at least some psychotic condition. The Board heard expert psychiatric evidence that repetitive questions and repetitive commands increase suggestibility and, if continued long enough, may reach the point where indoctrination could be effected, and a reversal of opinions and ideas previously held could be obtained. Many of the processes are hypnotic, and there is a fruitful field for post hypnotic suggestion. A preclear who "cognites" unreservedly upon scientology theory at the HPA level may wel1 be paranoid, though apparently normal in other respects. A person suffering from a paranoid disorder can often disguise the symptoms of his disease by an impressive facade of reasonableness and normality; he may even be in an advanced state of paranoia, but, provided that he comports himself in a creditable manner and speaks lucidly and reasonably, a layman - even an informed layman - may not realize that the individual is mentally ill. A quality of imperturbability and an air of reason and normality on most matters tend to give to the nonsensical utterances of such a person a spurious quality of reason. Herein may lie an explanation for the dedication of several of the witnesses who gave evidence in support of scientology. Several spoke with the same engaging frankness and clarity about normal matters and the nonsense of scientology. Their speech and attitude were equally as open and direct when they talked about thetans, engrams, theta bops on the E-meter, time tracks and past lives, as when they gave their names and their addresses appropriate to this lifetime. One began to understand how staff members, confronting the curious enquirer and lecturing to those attending the free lectures, could impress the gullible and the anxious and the mentally ill with an admixture of common sense and nonsense.
The effect of prolonged processing and training is that the critical faculties and common sense of the individual are destroyed, so that he comes to believe that Hubbard is right, scientology is right and everything else is wrong, and that the greatest thing that he can do is to work for Hubbard and thereby assist in saving the world.
During the Inquiry reference was made from time to time to brainwashing. This expression usually connotes techniques applied to an unwilling subject. Where it is so practised on a subject in normal health the objective of the operator may be achieved, but generally only temporarily, for once the processing is halted and the subject is returned to normal conditions and surroundings, reason tends to reassert itself, and the subject usually tends to resume his former way of thinking. In scientology, however, the auditor has a very willing victim, who submits to procedures which are in the main hypnotic and have been devised in a calculated way to achieve domination over the mind of the preclear. These procedures constitute a kind of brainwashing, though their pattern may not precisely be found in other techniques which are conventionally termed brainwashing. The Board is not concerned to find that the scientology techniques are brainwashing techniques as practised, so it is understood, in some communist-controlled countries. Scientology techniques are, nevertheless, a kind of brainwashing.
Expert psychiatric evidence was to the effect that in the early stages of brainwashing, a psychotic state, very much like schizophrenia, can be achieved. A person who "cognites" unreservedly upon scientology theory at the HPA course level has been scientologically brainwashed and might well be schizophrenic.
The astonishing feature of scientology is that its techniques and propagation resemble very closely those set out in a book entitled Brain-washing, advertised and sold by the HASI. This book purports to be "A synthesis of the Communist Textbook on Psychopolitics," "Psychopolitics" being defined as "the art and science of asserting and maintaining dominion over the thoughts and loyalties of individuals, officers, bureaus and masses, and effecting the conquest of enemy nations through 'mental healing'." (One edition of Brainwashing is described as "A synthesis of the Russian Text-book on Psychopolitics".)
The Board heard astonishing evidence about the Brain-washing Manual, as this book was usually called. Though purporting to be a synthesis of the communist text-book, with an introduction which purports to be the text of a lecture said to have been delivered by "Beria", to American students at the Lenin University, the English version of the manual bears a startling resemblance to Hubbard's own literary style. Whether he is the author, as was suggested by a witness hostile to scientology, is probably immaterial. What is of some significance is that his organization assiduously sold and distributed this manual. The Board heard evidence to the effect that Hubbard or his American organization, desiring to draw the attention of the "authorities" to the contents of the manual and to expose the craftiness of the Russian psychopoliticians, posted from America to the Melbourne HASI an envelope containing a copy of the manual, and a similar envelope but with no copy of the manual in it. When the two envelopes arrived at their destination, the Melbourne HASI then complained to the "authorities" that the contents of one envelope were missing, the suggestion being that the manual had been removed en route by communists, and the other envelope containing the manual was produced to the "authorities," so that they could see the nature of the material involved, and in this way the manual was brought to the notice of the "authorities."
It was a fanciful story, but it was consistent with Hubbard's policies of deceit and may very well be true. Certainly, a great part of the manual is almost a blue print for the propagation of scientology. One remarkable exhibit tendered to the Board was a series of extracts from the Brain-washing Manual, with, however, the substitution of a number of words with a scientology connotation for certain words with a communist connotation. With these substitutions effected, the extracts were in the main startlingly applicable to scientology as operating in Victoria. This exhibit, with the substitutions made, is Appendix 16.