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Chapter 1: The Church of Scientology 1.1 New Religious Movements Phenomena 1.2 The Emergence of the Church of Scientology 1.3 Goals and Practices 1.4 The Church of Scientology in the United States

Chapter 2: Sociology of Secrecy 2.1 Secrecy in Religion 2.2 Mystic Founder is Popular Dictator 2.3 Secrecy Helps or Fails?

Chapter 3: The Secrecy Culture in the Church of Scientology The Church of Scientology has been obscured in complex layers of secrecy. The matter of mystery exists at the heart of every religion but in the case of the Church of Scientology it turns into a culture. Urban observed that secrecy, in regard to the Church of Scientology, fundamentally functions as an “ambivalent and double-edge” social strategy (363). In the other words, secrecy is wielded in various forms in the Church of Scientology in order to pursueit its goals.

Inasmuch as the Church of Scientology plays an ambiguous role, the secrecy in each section works differently. The undefined boundary of the Church of Scientology, whether it is an educational organization, enterprise, or a religious group, fits the function of secrecy to the each category in a way thatwhich is variously understoodunderstood variously. As a matter of fact, the success of Scientologyy’ success lies in applying secrecy techniques in each working section of its enterprise. Ttherefore it is essential to have a look on the secrecy function separately.

Commented [K1]: Urban movements? Urban what?


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3.1 Trainings and Teachings The teachings of one man, L. Ron Hubbard, constituted the principles of a learning system in the Church of Scientology. Namely, “Spiritual Technology” consists of Scientology founders’ theories, assumptions, and techniques which make up the rituals of the Church. Accordingly, Hubbard’s popular book under the title of Dianetics hasve been useding as a primary source for ScientologScientology’sy main instructions. In fact, the Dianetics was the result of Hubbard imagination shift from writing on Science fiction to the science of the human mind, getting its while got its title from the combination of the words “Dia” meanings ‘through’ and “Nous” inreferring to a term of mind (Whitehead 52). In his Dianetics, Hubbard states that the human mind is composed of two basic parts, which are the analytical mind and the reactive mind. According to Hubbard, the analytical mind is the rational one and on the other side the reactive mind is the repository of “engrams”, a term used by Hubbard for the variety of memory traces. These engrams start burning in the reactive mind at the very moment of emotional loss or pain in the individual’s mind. The consequence of this mind process is the variety of problems that causes mental and physical illnesses, even insanity (Urban 356). The Dianetics does not only propose the problem but likewise suggests a solution for erasing all these painful engrams by taking the process of clearing, which is offered by the Church of Scientology. As a matter of fact, the Dianetics is published for

interested ppeople interested in

following Hubbard’s’ guidelines but the main point is that the levels in which these guidelines are put into practice, along with other supplementary material, aretried to be confidential. It is

Commented [K2]: Is this one learning system or multiple?


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essential to elaborate the system functions in different levels in order to figure out that how secrecy plays a role in the teaching and training system of the Church of Scientology. 3.1.1 To Be Clear Hubbard offers to the church members “an alleged state of high mental development” and made it known as “clear[ing]” (Stark and Bainbridge 128). Basically, through the process of clearing, the reactive mind will be cleared from painful engrams if the individual relives the original painful event by regressing it (Urban 365). In one of his advertisements, the Church of Scientology salespromotes Hubbard’shis clearing courses by demonstrating that “Go[ing] Clear for the first time in your life you will be truly yourself. On the Clearing Course you will smoothly achieve the stable State of Clear with: Good Memory, Raised I.Q., Strong Will Power, Magnetic Personality, Amazing Vitality, and Creative Imagination” (Stark 266). Hubbard named the whole process “auditing”, that is to say the patient in a systematic method is questioned by an the auditor in order to recall what he did in the past, then remove all problematic engrams from his/her mind. In his book Tthe Rroad to Ttotal Ffreedom, Wallis points out that Hubbard and his students would make even more noteworthy claims on the incredibility of the Clear state beyond its psychological or physical health. In this case, individuals in a Clear state would achieve an exceedingly normal human capability or power that which makes them “like Superman”. For instance claiming to have the ability such asto seeing through walls or communicating telepathically (121). Furthermore, Hubbard did not find the auditing enough for reaching ato Clear state for his clients and as a supplementary to his auditing sessionso as a supplementary tool to his sessions he , introduced a device, namely called the “E-meter”.

Commented [K3]: I think this would work better if you replaced it with the word “benefits”. I just don’t know if that is exactly what you’re trying to say.


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3.1.2 E-Meter “E-meter”, the abbreviated form of “electro-psychometer”, is a sort of skin galvometer. Its appearance is described as a small box with two metal cylinders with a and the needle that will show reaction to the patient responses during the auditing the session. This device isapply as an important object during the auditing session since it helps to extract the Scientologists' most intimate secrets and confessions (Cooper 98). According to the definition of Scientology “the E-meter measures the spiritual state or change of state of a person and thus is of enormous benefit to the auditor in helping the pre-clear locate areas to be handled. The reactive mind’s hidden nature requires the use of a device capable of registering its effects a function the E-Meter does accurately” (Scientology.org). To

Commented [K4]: Is this correctly written? The ‘a’ is throwing me off. You might want to double check.

point out, the inventor of E-Meter, Hubbard described that E-meter is never wrong. It sees all; it knows all. It tells everything. The following graphs pictures show that how E-meter functions: Commented [K5]: I would put captions under these pictuers. I know it’s redundant, but it makes it look a little more professional. Then I would mention them in the sentence above as figure 1 and 2 Formatted: Keep with next


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3.1.3 How Secrecy Plays a Role in Trainings and Teachings The learning process for followers in the Church of Scientology does not end atto the Clear level or E-meter. Actually, the levels of learning go beyond the Clear stage and gain its importance after the individual is get cleared. Below is a chart of the “processing levels” of Scientology. These are the levels through which a person will progress from first beginning in Scientology to achieving the celebrated state of “Clear”:

Formatted: Caption, Keep with next

Level OT VIII OT VII OT VI OT V OT IV OT III OT II OT I Clear SOLO GRADE4(Abilities) GRADE 3 (Upsets) GRADE2(OvertscandWithholds) GRADE 1 (Problems) GRADE 0 (Communication) DIANETICS ARC STRAIGHTWIRE OBJECTIVES

Abilities Gained Confidential Confidential Confidential Confidential Confidential Confidential Confidential Confidential A being who no longer has his reactive mind Freedom from dramatization and return of powers to act on own determinism Moving out of fixed conditions and gaining abilities to do new things Freedom from the upsets of the past and ability to face the future Relief from the hostilities and sufferings of life Ability to recognize the source of problems and make them vanish Ability to communicate freely with anyone on any subject A healthy and happy human being Knows he/she won't get any worse In present time and able to control and put order in the environment

Table 1: Processing levels of Scientology called "Bridge to the Total Freedom". The Chart lists the main courses available in Scientology, arranged in hierarchical sequence (Wakefield 86). Table 1. Processing Levels of Scientology called “Bridge to the Total Freedom” The chart lists the main courses available in Scientology, arranged in hierarchical sequence (Wakefield 86).

As it is obvious in the above chart, the secrecy seems to be a function in the process of teaching and training at the very beginning of the so-called “Operating Thetan”. Practically, all levels


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above Grade Four are considered “confidential” within Scientology. With the high security measures in this level, the church tries to prevent members from divulging of the materials and deploying of them in after clearing levels. With this intention, the levels above the Clear state are held under an aura of secrecy. For instance, the all the course materials related to the “Operating Thetan” are carried in a locked briefcase which that is chained to the pre-clearer’s arm. On the other side, in all upper secret levels, the pre-cleared audits himself while in lower levels the other person is responsible for auditing. The mysterious and exciting advance level of Scientology, namely “Operating Thetan” works as a motivation for the individuals to continue their studies to upper levels. To illustrateion, the pushing forces are gaining abilities such as telepathy, telekinesis, etc., as well as the ability to travel at will outside his body, known in Scientology as “exteriorization” (Wakefield 86). One of the confidential teachings in upper levels is the story of a cosmological figure called “Xenu”. Several ex-Scientologists described the secret story of “Xenu” like this: “75 million years ago, there was a Galactic Federation led by a figure named Xenu. The 76 planets within his Federation were faced with the problem of severe overpopulation, which he solved by bringing people en masse back to planet earth and then planting Hbombs in the principal volcanoes around the globe. The loyal officers within the Federation fought against Xenu, finally capturing and imprisoning him in an electronic mountain trap where he still dwells today. Unfortunately, Xenu had also placed “implants” within all human beings, which are designed to kill anyone who tries to


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unravel this cosmic secret. Luckily, however, these implants can be disabled by Scientology auditing.” (Urban 371) It seems that much more secret information is taught within the confines of the church and it is clear that the “Operating Thetan” levels are shrouded in extreme secrecy and tantalizing mystery. Surprisingly, people in Scientology organizations, not only in the United States but also all over the world, are sitting in small rooms while holding E-meters in their hand staring into space looking for the invisible objects which Hubbard has said are there (Wakefield 93). They are all looking forward to becoming Clear thenonly after secrets are revealed in front ofor their eyes. Consequently, along with this processstories come a complex legal and financial organizations tothat direct histhis rapidly growing Church. 3.2 Secret Business The Church of Scientology stepped into enormous varied business organization or rather an “intricate network of businesses” in an interconnected hierarchical system by the 1960s. Consequently, numerous organization and groups, under Hubbard’s leadership, came into existence and gradually they went under the shield of a bigger organization, namely the Church of Scientology. Progressively, Scientology gained a stance as a powerful corporate enterprise coupled with a reputation as a popular new religious movement in the United States (Urban 368). Factually, “the organization of Scientology resembles less a traditional Church than it does multi-national enterprises such as the Ford Motor Company, Coca Cola or International Telephone and Telegraph” (Wallis 124). Likewise, Hubbard tried to achieve success not only in psychology and human well being but also in all domains of his life, in particular, in business. Accordingly, Hubbard reveals this

Commented [K6]: This is a great sentence. It’s very nice to read aloud! Good job!


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claim in stating that “the end object of Scientology is making the individual capable of living a better life in his own estimation…. And the playing of a better game” (125). With this in mind, Scientology aspiration is winning in the game of life by presenting a way to get this achievement. Heelas argues that the religious operation of the Church of Scientology would extend to the explicit business world and a variety of organizations which that helps the improvement of efficiency and profit (62). The process of marketing in Scientology starts from the very bottom of the Church principles where the members have to pay for “auditing”. In response, Hubbard claimed that learning is always with has a price. On the other side, many critics called Scientology “the most expensive religion on the earth” since it charginge theits members a great amount of money (Behar 56). The so-called “the bridge to total freedom” is a fifteen higher levels higher thanof

Commented [K7]: This may be hard to find, but you should try and find an average amount.

Operating Teatan and each each of grades costs more an amount of money. For instance, achieving the level of “Clear” demands at least $128,560 dollars and by following the further steps, sessions, and trainings, these costs become increasingly expensive. As a matter of fact, for getting to the higher level, namely confidential levels individuals cannot leap any level and in most of cases they are recommended to take additional services and sessions before they can gain access to higher levels (Behar 50-57). In the sense of Scientology, confidentiality turns into a source of income for making individuals to pay for each level in order to be able to achieve to the levels whichlevels that are not revealed for to ordinary peoples. The use of secrecy as a source of power and authority is a strategy that Hubbard exemplifies through the use of his religion, Scientology. This secrecy only further promotes Scientology’s monopoly on knowledge. Because it’s members pay to have access to valued information, Scientology has obtained a powerful economic hierarchy giving

Formatted: Highlight


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it’s members a perceived status of prestige and privilege. Therefore, Scientology exemplifies the

Formatted: Font color: Red

role of secrecy as a source of statue, power and authority. As a device to maintain an exclusive monopoly on knowledge, secrecy often serves to enhance the prestige and status of privileged individuals within a particular social or religious hierarchy. In the case of Scientology, secrecy and access to valued information are also clearly tied to a powerful economic hierarchy, as well (372 urban). Consequently, the relationship between the Church of Scientology and its believers are ofmore commercial rather than religious in nature. Moreover, having obtained its goal in the religiousn market, the Church of Scientology applies some strategies thatwhich are defined in the frame of marketing and business. The most significantce of which in a successful business is the ability is to attracting clients who athat are interested in your products. Henceforth,Therefore the Church usinge some exclusive strategies which arethat helps it to recruit numerous followers and but how secrecy is also used enforce in getting members, will be investigated in the next section.

Commented [K8]: I am guessing this is a quote you wanted reworded. Mine is highlighted in yellow.

Amani_Samira Thesis edit 3  

I edited a masters thesis for foreign student friend of mine, from Iran studying in Hungary.

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