To bypass much of this document and go directly to summary and discussion of NOTS 45, select this link .


1978 was one of a string of bad years for Lafayette Ron Hubbard. Entering his sixty-seventh year in March, his Scientology organizations had been raided in 1977 by Federal agents who seized documents leading to the conviction of 11 Scientologists, including his wife Mary Sue.

The good news was that he was unlikely to be indicted himself, and that if he abandoned Mary Sue to her fate, he could continue to order the young Scientologists near him to do his bidding.

He was under continual guard by his cult-followers, hoping to ward off any further investigation of his criminal activities.

He amused himself by writing and directing movies, which I would dearly love to see, as they must be as enthusiastically as his music, his photographs, his prose, and his reasoning. Perhaps another Ed Wood is hidden in the vaults that Scientology has built to house Hubbard's effluvia.

As Russell Miller writes in Bare-Faced Messiah

One film, titled The Problems of Life, featured a perplexed young couple searching for a meaning to their lives. They first consulted a psychiatrist, predictably portrayed as a demented sadist, then sought advice from a scientist, who was shown madly scribbling theorems on a blackboard as if completely insane. Finally they approached a beaming Scientologist and concluded they were at last in the right place. Subtletly was not one of Hubbard's more obvious talents as a screenwriter.
On 15 August 1978, a federal grand jury indicted nine Scientologists--including Mary Sue Hubbard--on twenty-eight counts of conspiring to steal government documents, theft of government documents, burglarizing government offices, intercepting government communications, harbouring a fugitive, making false declarations before a grand jury, and conspiring to obstruct justice. Ultimately these Scientologists signed a Stipulation which detailed their nefarious activities

A few days later, playing film director in the California heat, L. Ron Hubbard suffered what appears to have been a stroke.

Again, quoting from Bare-Faced Messiah:

David Mayo, the senior case supervisor in Clearwater, did not know where he was going or what he had to do. All he was told was that an urgent, top-secret telex had arrived at the CMO instructing him to be on the next flight to Los Angeles.....Mayo was bundled in a third car and blindfolded. He asked what was going on and the driver replied: "We're taking you to LRH. He's sick. Keep the blindfold on until we arrive."

Mayo was dismayed when he was at last ushered into the Commodore's room at Rifle: 'He was obviously very ill, lying on his back almost in a coma. He could talk a little, but very slowly and quietly. There was medical equipment all round him, including an electric pulse machine to re-start his heart. Denk [a Scientology doctor] told me that he thought LRH was close to death. He would have moved him into a hospital but he thought the ride in the ambulance might finish him off. I was given his PC folders and told to solve the problem. I started looking through the folders that night and began auditing him next day.'

And thus, NOTS--New era dianetics For Operating Thetans--were born.

The prickly problem of how Hubbard--the Source of Scientology--could have such debilitating physical problems became a sticky one for Hubbard and for Scientology. After all, Hubbard's technology should alleviate such physical problems. Merely going 'clear' was posited in Dianetics to alleviate physical problems, or if not that, then passing through OTIII's "wall of fire" should make one immune. Perhaps auditing out Body Thetans or BTs (put simply, souls that are stuck to one's body), should provide relief. NOTS seems to be a way of dealing with more serious difficulties with the physical body, when merely ridding ones self of the obvious (to a high-level scientologist) body thetans was not enough.

Some NOTS tell the auditor to remove Body thetans that are sleeping. Well, that didn't work in Hubbard's case. Some tell the auditor to remove body thetans who are drugged. Odd, but that didn't do it either. Perhaps there are other possibilities.

Nots 45

NOTS 45, copyright L. Ron Hubbard 1978 and known as "Partially Blown BTs," is quite short: only 18 lines as presented in text form on the internet.

It begins by referring back to the 'visio' discussed in NOTS 16, which appears to refer to a perception of false exteriorization experienced by a subject when a body thetan blows in part but not entirely. Rather than being a full and true exterior perception, Hubbard and Mayo posit that the subject is experiencing one of the not-quite-blowing body thetan's perceptions.

In NOTS 16, Mayo and Hubbard discuss the difference in character between the false exterior perception of a visio and a true Operating Thetan perception during true exteriorization.

For me, it is odd that a belief system which claims to place such emphasis on the individual thetan (rougly, spirit or soul), finds that thetanic perceptions are so readily manipulable by other souls.

This concept, besides describing another similarity between scientology body thetan-handling and the Christian idea of demonic posession and exorcism, raises another point often made about the scientology system of belief. Namely, since many individual problems are caused by extra-individual entities (reactive mind, body thetans), the individual can point to the cause of his or her difficulties as being something outside him or herself. By extension, the problems noted in Scientology are not due to any problems with Hubbard's technology itself, but are caused by poor application of the essentially perfect techniques.

Scientology tells its adherents that the essential "you"--your thetan, or your analytical mind--is powerful and good. The bad behavior, errors in analysis, and aberrant thoughts you experience are due to some force that is not really 'you.'

In contrast, in many Christian traditions, the soul is besmirched from creation. The doctrine of Original Sin is perhaps the best known example. Such discrepancies may be another difficulty for Scientology when it claims to be compatible with all religions.

Hubbard and Mayo continue NOTS 45, claiming that the subject, besides having a false exterior perception or visio, may also experience a feeling of bodily distress when a thetan partially blows.

Apparently such thetans do not blow entirely because, by means of a mechanism that is not described, they are conglomerated with other thetans that have not been handled.

This reference to the entanglement of thetans is interesting and puzzling. If thetans (which, according to Hubbard, created Space and Time in which to cavort) are not extensible and without mass, how could they be commingled? Can pure 'life energy' be somehow intertwined? Can thetans, which create the reactive mind--which Scientology seems always to describe as a purely non-physical entity--be somehow palpable?

On the other hand, thetans are occasionally described as though they are tangible, as when they are collected and blown up in OT III, or when they attach to certain parts of the body.

This is a conundrum for which I would welcome explanation.

Mayo and Hubbard conclude NOTS 45 with a reference to the sense of relief the not-yet-OT will feel when a full cluster of body thetans is removed.

It is telling that in Dianetics, as published in 1950 in Astounding Science Fiction, Hubbard promised, as Miller tells it, "Every human brain, he argued, had the potential to operate as this optimum computer, with untold benefits to the individual and to mankind, not least restoring sanity to the insane, curing all manner of illnesses, and ending wars." These benefits would supposedly accrue after merely eliminating the reactive mind--going clear. Then, after Scientology was introduced in 1952--in the midst of legal entanglements over Dianetics--the Operating Thetan was introduced by Hubbard, who had "come across incontrovertible, scientifically-validated evidence of the existence of the human soul."

And, in Scientology: 8-8008 (1952), Hubbard wrote "With this book, the ability to make one's body old or young at will, the ability to heal the ill without physical contact, the ability to cure the insane and the incapacitated, is set forth for the physician, the layman, the mathematician and the physicist." But, oddly enough, these powerful tools could not prevent Hubbard from having a stroke at the age of 67.

Perhaps Hubbard believed twenty-six years hence, in 1978, that further auditing, thereby removing sleeping body thetans, then removing drugged thetans, then removing clustered thetans, etc., could alleviate those physical ills that Hubbard was experiencing. Perhaps eternal auditing was the cure, and finding and eliminating ever more complex structures of body thetans would stop aging and ailments, as Hubbard had claimed he could do so relatively simply in 1952.

Such auditing did not proceed infinitely. L. Ron Hubbard died, it seems, on 24 January 1986 at the age of 75. David Mayo still walks the earth, a repeated target of Scientology's vaunted litigation and, apparently, of its harassment.