By ensifer

What this site is all about

If you have followed any of the popular web sites and blogs concerning Scientology you’ll have noticed that most of them deal specifically with events that have transpired since 1982. More specifically, the main subjects of discussion center around David Miscavige, the Sea Org and how people manage to escape from the clutches of the much-reviled Billion Year Contracts.

There is also considerable information and opinion regarding L. Ron Hubbard, the nebulous events surrounding his death and the disposition of his estate. Tom Cruise and other celebrities are featured on most sites and almost nobody among the legions of ex-Scientology and ex-Sea org populace has anything positive to report on Scientology’s love affair with celebrity.

I don’t want to seem overly critical… but… my level of sympathy for what this Sea Org member or that Sea Org member went through is pretty low. Except for the kids that is. Those who were raised by parents who were also in the Sea Org. Those people didn’t actually have a real choice in how they were raised. Realize though, Miscavige himself was one of those Sea Org kids. While that doesn’t excuse any of his actions as an adult, it does explain some of how he used the tools and environment that he lived in to create an ideal scene for himself.

My goal is to tell a story about the 20 or so years leading up to the formation of the Religious Technology Corporation and the take-over of the Church of Scientology by Miscavige and his henchmen. I also grew up as a Scientologist, albeit a Scientologist from an entirely different and probably decidedly foreign Scientology that most bloggers write about on the Net. The Scientology I was a part began when Hubbard’s aim of making a Clear hadn’t been realized. Nor were there any OT Levels or a Sea Org. It was a different world than the one ruled by the Sea Org, Flag, FSM multi-level marketing schemes and mass revisions of Hubbard’s writings and intentions. Well, my view of what I imagined Hubbard’s intentions were.

A couple of things –

I left active participation in Scientology in 1982. I was one of the attendees at the infamous San Francisco Mission Holders meeting where Miscavige, Leserve and his crew of thugs took over Scientology and obliterated the Field. So far I haven’t found a detailed report on what transpired at that event and I intend to write one during the course of telling this story.

One of the blogs I came across had a short contribution from a gent by the name of John McMasters. John is a South African who was very close to Hubbard in the 60’s. Whether by design – because of his distinguished appearance and obvious skill at speaking coherently and with intelligence – or just happenstance, John was the official Clear #1 back in the late 1960’s. As I recall it was around 1967.  Anyway, in John’s article he stated that it seemed to him that Scientology changed course and became something entirely different when Hubbard changed the mission statement of his organization. Scientology used to be all about this – “Making the able more able”.

John MacMasters. He's the one standing. Duh. That's my mother Dolores on the left. The other lady I know but can't recall her name. This is at St. Hill in the mid 60's.

As John related, Hubbard himself had written that a cleared cannibal was merely a cleared cannibal. Removing or de-stimulating what hinders a person mentally or emotionally is no guarantee you’ll end up with a different person. Actually, it’s pretty much a guarantee you’ll get a person who is better at being whatever he or she was before they were “cleared”. As John said, it was when the mission statement was changed to “clearing the planet” that the whole nature of what we, as a group, had wrought with this collection of writings, interpretations and pronouncements that Hubbard produced. I agree. I never felt any sense of connection to the concept of clearing the planet. Besides being idiotic, it’s naive and unattainable.

In fact, it’s arrogant and detestable. Sorry folks, it is. If you have even passing knowledge of religion in the 20th and 21st Centuries you’ll know about the Mormons baptizing dead people. If not, I’ll give you the short version. In the Mormon church it’s vital that any spirit – alive, dead or unborn – be baptized into the LDS church. Failure to do so will leave them to Satan. The LDS (Mormons) are similar to Scientology in that they are stat-keepers as well.  One of the stats they are concerned with are how many of these souls-in-transition are baptized. So in order to get their stats up they started baptizing dead people. Jews, Catholics, whoever.

There was an uproar.  I found it amusing. And I found the arrogance and determination of the Sea Org and it’s goal of ‘clearing the planet’ amusing as well. Any of you reading this who were once a Sea Org or staff member who actually voiced that goal… I have news for you. You were rendered temporarily stupid by a purpose that is not only deranged, but all but impossible.

In the era of my Scientology we were concerned with doing the business of enhancing the abilities, perceptions and energy of people on Earth who are already “able”. It was beautiful. Sort of like playing a pick-up game of softball for money except you get to bring in a bunch of major league players on winter break. A whole team of ringers. Scientology was an assortment of communications skills, techniques for drawing out painful and destructive memories and eradicating their effects, common sense study and organizational tactics and a series of honest, effective tools for maintaining relationships with family, friends and associates. All nicely packaged with a Code that left each individual the responsible party for their own decisions.

Good stuff.

  1. Well, you’ve definitely got my attention. More please!

  2. Just Me says:

    Absolutely fascinating, ensifer. You’ve got my attention, too.

    Just Me

  3. Victoria says:

    Yep, same here:)

  4. Califa says:

    Love your writing! More, please!

  5. Fascinating! Very much!

  6. Bryon says:

    Wow, I love this blog! By the way, the Church of Scientology dropped the idea of clearing the planet years ago. The real stats are not Clears Made, but dollars raised by the IAS. I myself gave $20K to the IAS to pay for one of those fancy sushi dinners Mr. Miscavage likes to have flown in from Nobu for himself and his entourage. Actually as I recall, they told me the money was for something else. I am just an ordinary working Joe and wouldn’t have given that money for some criminal non-producer to eat expensive sushi.

    • ensifer says:

      Interesting. I still see the phrase in some of the 7 or 8 pounds of bulk mailing I get every week but your comment will make me look a bit closer at what the newest fund-raising slant is.

      Sorry about the $20K man. That would have bought me a brand new BMW motorcycle I’ve been eyeballing. And I’d cheerfully have audited you for the cash. Even if you didn’t need the auditing!


  7. Vicki says:

    My start in scientology was on the West coast and my exit from the sea org was in ’82. Love hearing of others I knew and cared about, in these “pre” times.

    Refreshing and enjoyable. Thank you.

  8. Veritas says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed what you’ve written so far and look forward to checking in again!
    Please keep writing!

  9. I used to love my Church says:

    Yeah, I’d love the skinny on the attitude towards LRH. And when did it change? Were there any “Independents” back then?

    And how ’bout Ron maybe taking a tad too much credit for a ‘discovery’? Did you ever question?

    • ensifer says:

      I can only offer my personal skinny. But I am planning to do an article on how credit for the ‘tech” was viewed by myself and a few close friends back in the 70’s. I also want to float my theory on why Hubbard really went the church route.

      Thanks for dropping by. I hope you come back.


  10. David,
    In response to your last comment on this thread!

    As your number one public on this blog I am very interested in this mentioned, forthcoming article.
    The research and the tech. For anyone that wants to know, I have HAD tremendous case gain with my past auditing in the old Scientology world. Auditors with their TR’s in that could read a meter, were always my best friends, instantly.

    Well, when that ceased to be the case on a continuing basis, I began having doubts. Finally after there were too many outpoints to ignore, I started looking online to get some answers. I read what David Mayo had to say. Articles by Otto Roose and John McMaster, the first Scientology Clear. It was shocking, amazing and enlightening.

    The truth is the truth and the sooner one can confront that, the saner they will ultimately end up. I was shocked! I was “overwhelmed” by the difference in the PR mode of the current C of S and the actual facts of LRH’s death, Mary Sue’s death, Quenton Hubbard’s death…all this was just unbelievable. Rechecked other references, kept reading, saw the death certificate, read other blogs….A month of my life passed before me in a minute and I was still reading.
    If was over 40 years ago when I sat down to do TR 0 on my comm course. In all my research, I learned much but I am sure, David, aka Ensifer, has more to tell.

    This will be an exiting post and a great starting point for your book, when you get ready to write it.

  11. Chuck McMullen says:

    Hey Stokes, ran across your blog and was really surprised it was written by you. I was trying to find about Jim Aubrey, linked into your site and there was your picture w/ Cindy!. I remember all the faces in the staff pictures. Interesting stuff indeed. I could go on about COS forever, but they have already robbed too much from me, won’t spend another minute on the BS.

    Keep up the good work.

    • ensifer says:

      Hi again Chuck. At some point we have to stop running into each other on the internet and actually do a motorcycle tour… before we get too old. 🙂

      Glad you like the blog. At some point I’m going to do a “Fresno Page” and post pictures of all the staff and people from that era. Maybe some of them will arrive and start adding their comments as well.

      • Chuck McMullen says:


        I would like that very much, maybe next summer.


      • Don Filbert says:

        Hey David. This comment of yours – very nicely said!! Also – if you go on a motorcycle tour … I’d like to come too. I have been riding in the North Georgia mountains for that last 15 years … and in the last 10 years – on a Kawasaki Nomad 1500. I’ll always remember your KAW 900 – and the Kerker pipes. That was an awesome motorcycle !!!

  12. Chuck McMullen says:


    Sorry to hear about Dol, she was someone special to me.

  13. AnonLover says:

    /APPLAUSE!! There is indeed a big gap in the available info about the mission holders being pillaged. It’s about dam time someone stepped up to fill in the gaps. Thank you Ensifar, this looks to be a fantastic blog and I can’t wait to read more!

  14. ensifer says:


    I’ll continue when I’m inspired. Actually, this whole effort is about 90% inspiration and 10% actually sitting down and writing something. Hopefully I won;t disappoint you. Come back and check from time to time.


  15. Karen LeCocq says:

    Wow… a flash from the past via Bill Wadhams…Interesting blog, David. Some memories… some not so pleasant. Sorry to hear about your mother, Jim and Phil. I remember them all fondly. Glad to hear Steve is not dead (a former 2D, briefly), not surprised to hear about Alan (he once attacked me in the parking lot of the Wild Blue Yonder… so much for the ethics of a married OT7…) FYI, if you are interested: I am no longer crazy, I am still an artist, married to another artist. We live in the foothills of the Sierra overlooking a lake. I teach art at UC Merced. I am very happy with life, my art, my 2D and my teaching. I am so glad I blew Scientology many years ago. It was not a highlight of my life, but I am glad for some of the people I met. I was interesting painting the leaves in your bedroom, Hubbard’s Cupboard and the van… but it wasn’t my best work. See what I do now on my website. Ciao, KL