Dianetics: A Review
50 Years Later
It is comforting to know that my word processing program sees the main title as a spelling error. Still, sold from billboards, hawked on late night TV, pushed door to door and with a Dianeticsmobile tooling around Toronto, it is no surprise that Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health has sold well.
But don't waste your time reading "Dianetics".
Trust my summary: By remembering earlier incidents in your life, you will be able to rid yourself of the harm caused by painful subconscious memories (which in dianetics are called engrams) and become "clear," an individual completely sane and with enhanced abilities.
Trust my conclusion: While some of the procedures do work, Dianetics can't live up to its claims.
Trust my analysis: The procedures read like mid-century psychotherapy that has been quantified, mixed with nonsense and told in obtuse, pseudo- scientific prose. The hook is Hubbard's "clear". When people progress towards clear some naturally assume that they will eventually attain it. Unfortunately, however, no one ever has. While some 50,000 people have attested to being clear, none have been formally tested beyond the confines of the church, to see if they have the advertised attributes. For scientology, a clear's attestation is sufficient. It is not enough for me.
Many clears (perhaps most) have quit Scientology but some never will. After an investment of tens of thousands of dollars, years of therapy and training, withdrawal from friends and family, and encouragement from their Scientology peer group, it is a very, very difficult thing to do.
If you're sceptical about my allegations and DON'T trust me, let me refer you to a few lines from "Dianetics" itself. I would quote specific lines from "Dianetics" but for one thing. Scientology sues people who quote their literature for copyright infringement. I must conclude that they do not want their books to be quoted, for if they were, no one would join their organization. I will paraphrase and refer the reader to the source. All references are from Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health ,the Paperjacks edition, published in 1975.
Book 1, Chapter 1, (page 5) We are told that Dianetics is a science like physics or chemistry and works as precisely as they do.
Book 2, Chapter 7, (page 129) Hubbard explains that more than 270 cases were studied in preparing the book.
Book 2, Chapter 7, (page 133) Hubbard emphasizes that we are dealing with facts.
Book 3, Chapter 10, (page 400) It is explained that the book is a product of 15 years of research. (So, I am unwilling to listen to excuses about why things won't happen as stated.)
Book 1, Chapter 1, (page 10) We are told that a clear's eyesight improves a great deal and unless cleared when quite old, will no longer need glasses. (However I know people cleared at a young age who wear glasses. Go to XENUTV.COM and see Jeber Hentzch, church president, wearing glasses.)
Book 1, Chapter 1, (page 16) Once cleared, a person can work with the information he has, without error. (A clear's spelling, typing and mental arithmetic therefore should be without error.)
Book 2, Chapter 5, (page 92) Colds are a psychosomatic ailment, so clears will be immune to them. (However, clears do get colds then rationalize them. Look for tissues in cold season.)
Book 2, Chapter 5, (page 96) The science of dianetics will extend human life. ( Hubbard, himself died of a stroke at age seventy four. Try and find a very old scientologist.)
Book 2, Chapter 8, (page 135) Zulus are savage, unable to progress and frequently ill because of their poor mental state. (I admit that this can't be quickly disproved without having a large number of Zulus around to work with, but this does illustrate Hubbards racism, found now and then throughout his work.)
Book 2, Chapter 10, (page 156) Clears don't get morning sickness and women who do, have intentionally or unintentionally assaulted the fetus. (Ask mothers within scientology and outside of it about the relationship between morning sickness and assaulting the fetus. Ask your own mother.)
Book 2, Chapter 11, (page 170) He tells us that a clear can remember everything and has the ability to make use of these memories. (You can ask a clear to quote the precise phrasing from the text, and if he or she can't, there will be no need to find it yourself. You can also go to XENUTV.COM where David Miscavige, the head of the church, forgets someone's name.)
Book 2, Chapter 11, (page 171) We are told that what a normal is to an institutionalized person, is what a clear is to a normal person. A clear, with his perfect memory can do computations, and Hubbard gives the example of a chess player, 120 to 180 times as fast as a normal. ( Look for people that become markedly more accomplished after becoming clear. I still haven't met even one. The movie stars were famous or on their way there, before Scientology.)
These are only a few samples from a 436 page book. Is the rest brilliant? No, it is a Gordian knot of nonsense tied into some credible methodology, which is time consuming to disprove, even if scientology allowed their clears to be independently tested. I wish I could quote precisely. I have made my paraphrases as close to Hubbards meaning as possible. See for yourself, but take the book out of the library or buy one at a garage sale. Don't do anything at all to financially support their loathsome enterprise. One last comment from Hubbard. (Appendix, page 412) He says that any skepticism about his "science" only exists because of an individual's engrams.
Must I be crazy not to believe Hubbard?