Examples of CoS related posters, leaflets, etc.

The following posters and leaflets were collected by me in June 1997, while on vacation in London and Stockholm. The posters and leaflets themselves are of course Copyright 1997 by the Church of ScientologyTM, and by A*B*L*ETM (Association for Better Living and Education). The presentation made here is within fair use, and is thus not an act of "copyright terrorism".

"Buy Dianetics"

One rainy evening, coming out from one of the tube stations in central London, I was given the following leaflet promoting Dianetics:

[Front of leaflet] [Other side of leaflet]

The front page of the leaflet states:
The world famous mathematician Albert Einstein made a startling statement, "we use only 10% of our mental potential", however he could not prove this or tell how we could improve. But now L. Ron Hubbard in his researches, has not only proven these words to be true, but more importantly he also demonstrates how to tap the dormant 90%. DIANETICSTM: The Modern Science of Mental Health by L. Ron Hubbard, is the most important breakthrough in the field of the human mind ever made.
[I should here be mentioned that this "10% of brain"-thing probably is an urban legend] On the back of the leaflet, we find the following:
In his book DIANETICSTM: The Modern Science of Mental Health, L. Ron Hubbard makes startling discoveries on the mind.

It has long been known that up to 70% of Man's Illnesses are psychosomatic (caused by the mind) but no-one know the solution to this. In the DIANETICS book, the single barrier to the mind's capacities is revealed and examined in detail. The application of DIANETICS techniques can raise intelligence, lower the rate of illness and mental anguish and bring about a far higher and happier state of mind. Thousands of written reports on the success of DIANETICS therapy are the best proof of the quality of this book. Here is a new insight into the mind, showing that its full potentialities are far in excess of past supposition. Rid yourself of those barriers. Order your copy today.

Now, how dare they use such an excellent scientist as Albert Einstein in their propaganda (besides, they claim that Einstein was a mathematician, which is wrong; he was a physicist, which is quite different)? And not only that; they imply that Hubbard managed what Einstein was unable to do; namely to prove his statement. If Hubbard's work was such an "important breakthrough in the field of the human mind", how come the only mention of these "breakthroughs" are in Hubbard's on writings, published by himself (or rather; by his "church"), heavily and aggressively protected by copyrights here and trademarksTM there, and not in independent, peer-reviewed scientific journals? Could it perhaps be that
  1. Hubbard was unable to get it published in scientific journals, since there were/are no merits to his claims?
  2. Hubbard didn't want it published, because he wanted all the income his "breakthroughs" could bring him (i.e. greed)?
When it dawned on Hubbard that his work was not recognized in the scientific community, he started blaiming the FBI, the CIA, and even claimed that there is an international conspiracy of psychiatrists actively opposing Dianetics, to keep these "startling discoveries" secret in order to take over the world. Now, don't you think it is strange that seemingly no serious scientists have reproduced any of his findings? If there were any merit to Hubbards claims, surely someone in the scientific community would have discovered the potential of his "techonology", and produced similar results? Hubbards claims are so fantastic, that if they could be reproduced by independent investigators, this would be such a piece of big news, and we would know about it not only through scientific journals, but also through the media!

For a thorough critical introduction to Dianetics, read Jeff Jacobsen's excellent essay The Hubbard is Bare. Then go visit the CoS's official Dianetics site to see how the CoS presents Hubbard's claims.

Tottenham Court Road, London

Walking up Tottenham Court Road in London, doing all the things that tourists usually do, I stumbled upon the Scientology org (actually, I knew the org was there, so it was not entirely coincidental :-). Being a very curious person, I went inside and asked about the "free stress analysis" they were advertising for outside. I won't bore you with details about the conversations I had with them inside (except mention that they tried to convince me that the common cold is a purely psychosomatic illness), so I'll just comment the two folders I took while inside the org.

"The Best Career on the Planet"

The following folder is quite scary in that it more or less encourages people to quit their jobs to become auditors, and pursue what the CoS calls "The Best Career on the Planet":

[Outside] [Inside]

On the outside of the folder, we find the following:

Back: "All over the world auditors are succeeding. However, in some areas we understand there are auditors who can't seem to get going. In one particular area we have heard that some auditors were working at regular jobs. What a waste! In a world without assistance, real honest assistance from anyone but Dianeticists and Scientologists, the waste of ability in these lines is practically criminal."
L. Ron Hubbard

What nerve! This leaflet practically calls it a criminal act to work in a regular job instead of performing Dianetics auditing! The inside of the leaflet is a plug for "I HELP" (probably trademarked by the CoS in one way or the other), aiming to make Scientologists join up for active or professional memberships in "I HELP". Now, there's not much point in transcribing the entire leaflet, so I'll just pick out a few parts:

"Make your postulates happen!"

This leaflet promotes the Sea Org Hatting courses aboard the Freewinds:

[Front] [Back]

OT Hatting courses are the most powerful training you could ever engage in anywhere in the universe and at any point on the whole track. Here lies the core data on OT, the mechanics of postulates, the truth about the whole track and the MEST universe, the vast extent of your true capabilities and, most importantly, how to utilize your OT power RIGHT NOW!

Now, if only there was such a thing as "OT powers"!

Narconon, Stockholm

Official web site: http://www.narconon.org/

This first sample is a poster promoting Narconon that I found at Cityterminalen (the central bus terminal building):

[Narconon Poster]

The reason they put up the poster there is, I suspect, that lots of people hang around there, including drug addicts. Translated to English, the poster says:
        [Picture of ]   Wouldn't you like
        [sitting man]   to manage without

        We have also been in this shit,
         so we know what it's like...

         [Picture of grinning people]

               [NARCONON LOGO]
      The successful support organisation
        for drug abusers.  Contact us!
              Call 08-710 90 20
       (You can of course be anonymous)
Sounds very promising, doesn't it? And if you're really desperate, and want to stop using drugs, you'd try everything, wouldn't you? So far, everything's fine. But if you investigate things a bit further, you will find that "the unique model of substance abuse treatment that Narconon employs was developed by L. Ron Hubbard". This treatment utilizes, among other things, massive doses of niacin and saunas, purportedly to sweat out the toxins from your body. Unfortunately, this treatment has no provable effect, despite the claims made by NARCONON and the CoS.

But this was not the only thing promoting Narconon I found at Cityterminalen in Stockholm. At each and every payphone, there were a stack of cards promoting Narconon. Naturally, I ripped down the poster, and "confiscated" all the cards I could find.

[Narconon Card]

Translated to English, the card says:
     Are you tired of doing drugs.
     Are you tired of not having any real friends.
     Do you want to stop doing drugs or alcohol.


     CALL                The organisation
     08-710 90 20        [Narconon logo]
                         The support organisation for drug abusers

     Copyright (C) 1995 NARCONON HUDDINGE: The Narconon symbol
     is a registered trademark owned by A*B*L*E.  Association for
     Better Living and Education International, and is being used
     with their permission.
Once again, the Scientologese obsession with copyrights and trademarks manifests itself.

On the card, they state that they have experience with abuse. In the context of drug abuse, there is nothing wrong with that, but when you think about the CoS (which NARCONON hesitates admitting being connected to) and its underpaid staff, its highly expensive courses, their brainwashing, the RPF (Rehabilitation Project Force -- the Scientologese version of gulags), this statement assumes quite another dimension. Ironic, don't you think?

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