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FREEDOM can be generally defined as:
HAVING CAPABILITY AND OPPORTUNITY FOR SOME FORM OF EXISTENCE OR EXPRESSION
“Capability” relates to internal factors such as those related to skill and ability. If someone could walk but was tied to a chair, their freedom to walk would be restricted by the lack of opportunity. If someone was free to get up and walk, but was unable to do so due to some form of physical dysfunction, their freedom to walk would be restricted by the lack of capability.
RESPONSIBILITY could be defined as:
AN ATTITUDE OF OWNERSHIP OR CONTROL OVER SOME FORM OF REALITY
Note: “attitude” in the above definition is used in a sense of “a position assumed for a specific purpose.” Position – in a sense of “point of view.” [Merriam-Webster Dictionary]
ABILITY could mean:
THE POWER OF CREATION OR DETERMINATION OVER SOME FORM OF REALITY
An entrance into greater ability over something is INCREASED AWARENESS of it.
TAKING RESPONSIBILITY would mean assumption of control over something; this would be initiated by expanding one’s consciousness over that form of reality for which one is taking responsibility. This is mainly done by learning to confront the realities in question and develop visions (perceptions) about them.
In essence, this practice could be called TRANSCENDENCE since when you take responsibility for something you have to become “bigger” than the thing you are taking responsibility for.
1a : to rise above or go beyond the limits of
1b : to triumph over the negative or restrictive aspects of : overcome
1c : to be prior to, beyond, and above (the universe or material existence)
2: to outstrip or outdo in some attribute, quality, or power
There can be two basic problems when it comes to responsibility: inability to take responsibility and inability to let go of responsibility after having taken it. One should be able to both take responsibility and not take responsibility over some form of reality in order to be free with respect to it. In fact, a good exercise along this line would be to alternate taking and letting go of responsibility for some target reality – assume a position of control and then let go of it; then after having liberated oneself from it, assume a position of control again, and so on.
Just as Reality could be subdivided into different Spheres of Existence so can Freedom be better understood in therms of them:
(1) Freedom to be an individual; (2) to be in an intimate relationship and have a family; (3) to be a group member and form group(s) of one’s choosing; (4) to contribute to the determination of the course of one’s own species; (5) to have nature and be a part of nature; (6) freedom to be space, energy and matter persisting through time; (7) freedom to be consciousness in itself, apart from anything else; (8) infinite freedom.
The same subdivision could comprise various Spheres of Responsibility:
Responsibility for (1) Self as an Individual, (2) one’s Intimate Partner and Family, (3) one’s Group(s), (4) one’s Civilization (Mankind for humans or a family of intelligent civilizations similar to oneself), (5) Nature (web of interconnected life forms), (6) the Physical Universe, (7) Consciousness in itself, and (8) Eternity
Below being an Individual is the sphere of Robotism where someone can still have responsibility for maintaining some line of orderly activity.
If we can view any REALITY as basically a CREATION, then taking responsibility for something would necessarily include taking responsibility for the creation of that something. In terms of SPHERES of responsibility this would mean: creation of Self; creation of a Family (or intimate relationships); creation of Group(s); creation of Mankind (for human beings); creation of Living Forms; creation of Matter, Energy, Space and Time; creation of consciousness or intelligence itself; and in the 8th dynamics we have an unlimited or infinite creation potential.
Each one of these spheres can be a subject in itself and would require a somewhat different approach.
Taking responsibility for another person, for example, would be taking responsibility for their actions, thoughts and emotions, their intentions as well as the fact of their existence and their identity – that is – any and every aspect of the perceivable reality of that individual AS WELL AS your own actions, thoughts, emotions, and intentions toward them. It’s a complete package.
Taking responsibility for Humanity at large would necessitate taking responsibility for all and any conceivable expressions of human nature. One would have to take responsibility for the realities of war, crime, immorality, hatred, aggression, injustice, stupidity, loss and failure and anything else that can be found to exist in human expression including love, compassion, happiness, forgiveness, intelligence and so on. Both “good” and “bad” realities need to be accounted for. Under Humanity would obviously fall extended subjects such as existence and relationships between different races, nations, religions, economic constructs, knowledge of the past and visions of future civilizations and so on… There is a lot there to “digest,” but one of course cannot hope to do it all “in one sitting.” As one works on expanding one’s consciousness the various realities to be processed and transcended will emerge to view almost automatically.
There are five basic actions of consciousness with respect to any given reality:
OBLIVION or IGNORANCE (no awareness)
NON-CONFRONT (alter-isness) – creating a representative idea of something and confronting that instead of confronting the actual reality of that something. This could also be understood as indirect and distorted perception.
RESISTANCE or PROTEST or NEGATION (not-isness) – this is where someone begins to “press” one’s consciousness against an actual reality (or existence) in question.
OBSERVATION or DIRECT CONFRONT (is-ness) – this is where someone can simply observe some reality as it exists or unfolds.
TRANSCENDENCE – taking responsibility for the creation of experience or vision (perception) of the reality in question.
This was adopted from Scientology Axiom 11. Also, note that there is a big different between “symbolic”(non-direct) perception and direct perception of something.
One cannot usually go from complete oblivion to complete responsibility in one step (over some form of energy, manifestation, or expression) as one is progressing from a point of no ability to a point of complete ability or power over something. Hence, an expansion to a state of complete responsibility and transcendence over something is a gradient progression toward greater and greater state of awareness and ability.
It would be counter-productive to accuse someone of “not taking responsibility” when he or she is in a state of protest or resistance toward some form of reality, as it is an intermediary state on the path to a state of complete responsibility. Instead, a state of protest should be developed to a point where one no longer feels like he or she has to protest and can actually embrace the existence of a given reality as a form of existence.
It should also be noted that true responsibility is an extension of one’s will; hence, it is not something that can be enforced. An individual has to be free to take or not take responsibility for something. An idea that one must take responsibility for everything can actually result in a condition of being unable to take responsibility for anything. The scope of someone’s responsibility has to be appropriate to their ability and willingness to take it.
It also could be noted that one of the biggest barriers to transcending the reality of something could (and in most cases is) BLOCKED COMMUNICATION on the subject of that reality or in effect some form of blocking of the creation of perception. Someone may think that they have a problem or feel overwhelmed by some form of reality (such as antagonistic actions of another, for example) while the actual source of overwhelm would be found in the efforts to block observation or communication of that reality. In an abusive relationship, harmful actions and suppression of perception and communication usually come from the same source where the receipient of abuse of threatened or somehow intimidated into NOT COMMUNICATING about the realities of abuse, and often times the very act of recognition and perception of the reality of abuse as it is under attack or suppression as well. Hence, being liberated to TALK ABOUT and to freely FORM PERCEPTION of the reality of abuse would in most cases allow an individual to successfully overcome and move beyond – TRANSCEND – that reality. Also see page SANITY AND INSANITY.
There is a relationship between an ability to CREATE and an ability to EXPERIENCE (or perceive):
YOU WON’T BE ABLE TO EXPERIENCE WHAT YOU ARE UNWILLING OR UNABLE TO CREATE AND
YOU WON’T BE ABLE TO CREATE WHAT YOU ARE UNWILLING OR UNABLE TO EXPERIENCE.
Ability to experience means to be able to fully and easily perceive something (in Scientology, this is commonly referred to as an ability to “confront.”) Ability to create means to be able to create or recreate a certain experience if only on a level of perception as through mockups or re-experiencing memory recordings. Inability to experience something, inability to maintain presence and confront any given form of existence such as that of various thoughts, actions or emotions of another human being leads to overwhelm by that existence and lack of clear perception as well as lack of havingness and control over it.
Ultimately, one has to be able to freely consider the reality of any thought, action, emotion and intention in order to fully transcend the realm of human relationships.
If you are unwilling to experience criticism for example, you won’t be able to consciously express it and will be more likely to dramatize or urge to dramatize it unwittingly. If you are unwilling to harm somebody, then you won’t be able to easily confront someone trying to harm you or someone else. This is how it works – if you inhibit one, you will automatically inhibit the other…
If you, say, indoctrinate a child into never saying anything bad to anyone and get him or her into a state of anxiety about offending someone’s feelings, you will end up with a neurotic child on your hands who will feel overwhelmed and most likely dramatize to be offended at just about anything.
That’s why the ultimate solution to human ills always is going to be INCREASED ABILITY to Create and Experience any form of reality and so establish one’s power over it.
SOURCES FROM EARLY DIANETICS & SCIENTOLOGY
Under initial Dianetics: Modern Science of Mental Health there was not much discussion of responsibility as such. The responsibility was basically to handle and exhaust (or discharge) the “reactive mind” (or what Eckhart Tolle in his works calls a “pain-body”) through the use of Dianetic auditing technique and taking precautionary measures in society to prevent the reactive mind from gaining strength in the first place.
There was some discussion of Responsibility in his next book Science of Survival but more along the line of its regular definition as someone’s level of accountability depending on their position on the tone scale.
Where Responsibility was first addressed as a spiritual quality is in the book Advanced Procedure and Axioms which represented the next “echelon” of Dianetic processing.
(November 1951) Advanced Procedure and Axioms: Responsibility
DEFINITION: Responsibility is the ability and willingness to assume the status of full source and cause for all efforts and counter-efforts on all dynamics.
It means responsibility for all acts, all emotions on every dynamic and in every sphere as one’s own.
[comment: It seems that Hubbard forgot to include responsibility for “thoughts” in the book, but he discusses Thoughts and Counter-Thoughts in lectures related to this book.]
Complete negation of responsibility is complete admission of being under the complete control of the environment. Assumption of full responsibility is a statement of control of the environment and persons within it without necessity of control.
There is more in that book on this but for our point this will suffice.
Here are some quotes from accompanying lectures to the Advanced Procedure and Axioms book:
[19 NOVEMBER 1951] Thought, Emotion, and Effort: Cause and Effect
It’s very amusing. As a matter of fact, almost anybody can sit down and refuse to take the responsibility for something, just specifically, and feel a counter-effort. Did you ever see a medium sit down and get slapped by spirits? Did you ever see that? Well now, that’s the easiest one of them all. She will, too! She said, “Spirits exist and this exists and that exists, and I’m going to sit here quietly in a trance and … Of course, you have to be careful how you do it because there are evil spirits and they will sometimes come around and cuff you.” And she knows this out of her own experience, but, believe me, it’s a convincer. So she’ll sit down there quietly and she’ll relax and relax, not taking the responsibility for these counter-efforts, and she’ll all of a sudden get one.
Now, I have never heard one of these things audible, except when the medium slapped her hands behind her back like that. But I have seen a medium come up with a black eye on this. All she had – what she was doing, actually, is she had failed to take responsibility for her little brother – a punch that gave her a black eye and so she got the black eye back again. I mean, it’s very simple.
These counter-efforts exist and are effective on you to the exact degree that you don’t take responsibility for them.
. . .
It is not the amount of physical pain in a person’s life, or sorrow or loss or anything else – it simply breaks down his ability to handle his own theta facsimiles, his ability to handle his own memories. When he can’t handle a certain memory, why, he’s in tough way: it’ll start handling him, and this is pretty grim.
[17 DECEMBER 1951] Thought, Emotion, and Effort: Counter-Effort, Counter-Emotion and Counter-Thought
Now, actually, you know there’s such a thing as an engram, so we’re just neglecting the thing because we’ve found faster ways to snap the case out of its top. But you take an engram, all it is, in the world, is counter-thought and counter-emotion impressed against the individual when he is inert and unable to put forth an effort to resist them.
A companion book to Advanced Procedure and Axioms – Handbook for Preclears – also had a diagram in there demonstrating the superiority of THOUGHT over the rest of the organism:
Here are some quotes from Handbook for Preclears – note the emphasis on the ability to control one’s mind and the environment:
(December 1951) Handbook for Preclears: On The State of Man
Man does NOT adapt to an environment. He adapts the environment to himself. And in that lies his success. When he fails to adapt the environment, when he lags in his complete control of that environment, he has altered himself or his ideas until he could again change the environment.
(December 1951) Handbook for Preclears: An Ideal State of Being
Physically, on the evolution chain, Man is attempting a greater and greater control of his environment. The environment does not control a healthy Man. He controls the environment. The surroundings of a sick Man, a neurotic or insane Man have a tendency to control him. One sees this clearly as one advances, by this new science, into happier states of mind. One’s health and ability rises directly as one asserts greater and surer control over his surroundings. Conversely, one asserts better and better control of his surroundings as he becomes healthier and happier.
An ideal state of being, it goes without remark, would not include illnesses and inability to control oneself or his environment. Control of oneself and one’s environment depend upon his attainment toward the ideal state of being.
(December 1951) Handbook for Preclears: The Human Mind
As one goes through Life he records twenty-four hours a day, asleep and awake, in pain, under anesthetic, happy or sad. These facsimiles are usually recorded with all perceptics, which is to say, with every sense channel. In the person who has a missing sense channel such as deafness, that portion of the facsimile is missing.
A full facsimile is a sort of three-dimensional color picture with sound and smell and all other perceptions plus the conclusions or speculations of the individual. It was once, many years ago, noticed by a student of the mind that children had this faculty of seeing and hearing in memory what they had actually seen and heard. And it was noted that the ability did not last. No further study was made of the matter and indeed, so obscure were these studies that I did not know about them during the early stages of my own work.
We know a great deal about these facsimiles now — why they are not easily recovered by most people when they grow up, how they change, how the imagination can begin to remanufacture them as in hallucination or dreaming.
Briefly, a person is as aberrated as he is unable to handle his facsimiles. He is as sane as he can handle his facsimiles. He is as ill as he is unable to handle his facsimiles. He is as well as he can handle them.
That portion of this new science which is devoted to the rehabilitation of the mind and body deals with the phenomena of handling these facsimiles.
A person ought to be able to pick up and inspect and lay aside at will any facsimile he has. It is not a goal of this new science to restore full recall perception, it is the goal to rehabilitate the ability of a person to handle his facsimiles.
(December 1951) Handbook for Preclears: Processing
The pre-clear generally starts with the environment in rather heavy control of him. The modern educational system, various laws and parental authority all seek to cause the preclear to be an effect of the environment rather than a CAUSE of environmental effects. When he has come to a level where he can be self-determined on the majority of the dynamics, his case is considered closed. This book assists him to attain the goal.
The next “echelon” up from Advanced Procedure and Axiom is where the subject of Dianetics ends and Scientology begins. The three main books that cover the basics of Scientology are Scientology 8-8008, The Creation of Human Ability, and The Fundamentals of Thought as well as a number of lecture sets such as The Philadelphia Doctorate Course, The Phoenix Lectures, and The Factors. Let’s look at some quotes from some of these materials:
Note. PDC in the quotes below stands for The Philadelphia Doctorate Course.
(December 1952) Scientology 8-8008: Responsibility
The responsibility level of the preclear depends upon his willingness or unwillingness to handle energy. That preclear who is protesting against energy in any direction is abandoning responsibility in greater or lesser degree.
Slaves are made by giving them freedom from responsibility.
(December 1952) Scientology 8-8008: Creation and Destruction
An individual will not be responsible for that on which he will not use force. The definition of responsibility is entirely within this boundary. That person will not be responsible in that sphere where he cannot tolerate force, and if one discovers in an individual where he will not use force, he will find where that individual will also refuse to be responsible.
[02 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: Locks, Secondaries, Engrams – How to Handle Them
Now, with the First Book forward, we were trying to bring around and we succeeded in actually bringing a person up to the responsibility for the moments when he was unaware. We ran them out and brought them back into being. And whenever we ran one out and brought it back into being, we made him responsible for that section of his life and it ceased to have a heavy command value on him. Because anything for which a person is not responsible can effect — make an effect of that person. Any time he’s not responsible for something, it can affect him.
Well, so you see now what we’re talking about — we’re talking about engrams — it comes around to an engram. An engram is a moment of pain and unconsciousness by old definition. Let’s redefine it.
An engram is a period of no responsibility. An engram is a period where the individual has abandoned control of and ownership of space, energy and objects. An engram is a period where the individual has abandoned space, energy and objects.
Now, if you put that definition down, it becomes much more understandable when we start to define space, energy and objects and find out what they are in terms of experience. But you can see that right now as you connect that up.
Now, to run an engram — running an engram is a method of Standard Operating Procedure 1950 or 1951. It is a method of making the individual reassume control of a period where he has abandoned control of space, energy and objects. You make him reassume control of, by going through it again and running through it again and demonstrating to him that he had a better control of it than he supposed. And so you run it and you run it and you run it.
[02 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: A Thetan Creates by Postulates – Q2
And that’s a part of “I don’t want to make any decision about it.” And that is in essence no responsibility. Unwillingness to make a decision or unwillingness to make a condition of being is the highest essence of no responsibility. The next echelon immediately down is responsibility as force.
[03 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: The Track of the Thetan/GE-Space/Time
Now, a fellow is — we’ll cover responsibility very heavily, but when a fellow won’t take responsibility for an energy, he becomes an effect of it.
[03 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: ARC, Force, Be/Do/Have
Also, responsibility happens to be force in this universe, too, because objects in this universe are made out of energy. So, if you want to rehabilitate the responsibility of the preclear, you’ve got to rehabilitate his ability to handle force.
[09 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: Flow: The Part Force Bears in Clearing
No responsibility is the inability to handle force. Responsibility is the ability to handle force in the MEST universe. That is the definition of responsibility and that’s all there is to it.
[11 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: Chart of Attitudes: Rising Scale Processing
Now, what then is your level that is an attainable level for freedom? It would have to be a level which is so high that every man could reason and be responsible in his own right for his own acts and also for the acts of others.
[13 DECEMBER 1952] PDC: Goal: Rehabilitation of Thetan, Case Step I
One has to be able to command energy in order to perceive.
Lack of perception equals lack of force – force simply composed of energy and objects. To rehabilitate perception, rehabilitate the preclear’s ability to handle force.
Responsibility is the experience manifestation of taking on command of energy. That’s all. Responsibility is force. Willingness to be, use and have. Utilize and own energy and objects sitting in space – that’s responsibility. What is responsibility? It’s the willingness to handle force. If you get a person who is not even vaguely willing to handle force, you’ve also got a person who is not capable of responsibility.
If you get a manager who is afraid to hurt somebody – in other words, use force on somebody-you got a lousy manager. And that’s the end of it. A fighting ship might have an awful lot of men on it who just hated the hell out of its captain – might hate his guts from the word g o -a n d follow him to their deaths. Why? He used force. A person using force isn’t trying to be liked. He goes way upscale to get liked, not way downscale into M EST to be liked. Entirely different thing. Responsibility and force are the same thing. Perception and force are the same thing.
Energy: inability to handle energy would mean inability to perceive. Inability to perceive would be the inability to handle energy.
[27 MARCH 1953] The Factors: Beingness, Agreement, Hidden Influence, Process
I don’t know whether you – then you can call this – you can’t call this a religion, because a religion had to do, ordinarily, with some kind of an idol or a god or a devil or something of the sort. But it happens that we are working with the human soul. Because they’ve always called this thing the human soul. This is the guy. And they’ve called it “He has a soul” or “I have a soul” as though it’s a separate item. That means he’s o no longer taking any responsibility for his own self. He doesn’t-he isn’t responsible for himself anymore. And that’s his basic idea of existence. He says, “I’ll be a body and then I will not any longer be responsible for myself.” You see? That’s a negation of responsibility which is enormous.
[23 JULY 1954] The Phoenix Lectures: The Four Conditions of Existence, Part II
An individual couldn’t possibly get into trouble with As-isness, except if you consider losing everything trouble. But it would be things that he was losing which he either didn’t want or had just postulated into existence. In other words, As-isness is an exact duplication or an exact creation. All As-isness is doing is merely accepting the responsibility for having created it and anybody can accept the responsibility for anything. That’s all As-isness is when it operates as a perfect duplicate.
Now, what’s this full responsibility? Full responsibility merely says this: “I created it.” When you ask somebody to make a perfect duplicate of it, he’s going through the mechanics of creating it. Therefore, it disappears. He knows, unless he throws some other-determinism in on the thing – in other words, practices some Alter-ism on its creator – that it’s not going to exist at all.
Now, the physical universe, as we look at it right around us here, is an Isness for one reason only: we all agree that somebody else created it. Whether that is God or Mubjub or Bill, we agree that somebody else brought these conditions into existence. And as long as we are totally agreed upon this, boy, have we got everything solid. And the moment when we agree otherwise and we say, “Well, we made it,” then it starts to get thin.
[23 JULY 1954] The Phoenix Lectures: The Four Conditions of Existence, Part III
Now, the funny part of it is that if you made it and you know you made it, you can always say, “It doesn’t exist now.” By saying what? By saying “I made it.” As-isness, see? You accept the responsibility for having created it and you get a “Not-isness.”
So there are really two conditions of “Not-isness”: there’s just vanishment or the other one, which is what we mean, which is an Isness which somebody is trying to postulate out of existence by simply saying “It isn’t.”
A Not-isness in our terminology would be this specialized case of an individual trying to banish something without taking responsibility for creating it. Definite, positive and precise definition: trying to vanish something without taking the responsibility for creating it. And the only result of doing this is to make it all unreal, to make it forgotten, to make it back of the black screen, to make it transparent, to make it dull down, to give it over to a machine, to wear glasses-anything that you could possibly do to get a dim-down of an Isness. A nd that is done by saying-just this, just this precise operation, no other operation: “I didn’t make it. It isn’t.” See? “I didn’t do it, so it doesn’t exist.”
An Isness exists only because of As-isness – As-isness took place in the first place. It got created, then we had to alter it slightly to get an Isness. We had to give up some responsibility for it and we had to shift it around. A Not-isness, then, exists in order to provide a game. A game is an Isness which is being handled by a couple of Not-isnesses or an Isness being handled by a Not-isness, any way you want to look at it.
A football game can be added up in terms of existence, see? Here we have one side and it’s got the ball and so the other side must Not-is the side that’s got the ball. And the side that’s got the ball has to win – in other words, to arrive at a receipt-point someplace along the line.
We get the Communication Formula itself as being lower than the conditions of existence. And we get affinity, reality and communication as simply being the methods by which existence is conducted. It is not the interplay of existences-so we’re dealing with a higher echelon than ARC right now.
[23 JULY 1954] The Phoenix Lectures: The Four Conditions of Existence, Part IV
All right. Let’s take this legend of the Creator and discover that it is quite uniform, it is found in every savage tribe, it is found across the face of the world and it is found throughout this universe – the legend of the Creator.
Very well. We can say there was a Creator and he created everything and that’s fine. Well, if this were the case, why, that’s fine too because it wouldn’t unmock. In other words, things would not disappear if there were a Creator who made everything.
You could even use this as a tremendous argument to prove that there was such a thing as a Creator and he made everything – just by the fact that it’s here. And if you had made it and continued to accept your responsibility for it, it wouldn’t be here. So there must have been a Creator. You could go at it with this type of logic.
However, it works this way: If somebody else, other than yourself, made a mass of energy, all you would have to do would be to come along and fish around for its approximate moment of creation and duplicate it and it would then disappear.
So whether the Creator created everything or not, it’s a certainty that you, in order to continue with the physical universe, have to, to some degree, lay the blame on some other identity and say, therefore – this postulate, whether he created it or you created it, does not enter the question at all, if you duplicated it, it would go away, you see, regardless of who created it. This happens to be not too easily subjectable to proof, but we’re talking now about a very basic fundamental. And it is necessary for you to carry around the postulate that somebody else created it in order for it to exist.
So we get this basic thing of other man’s responsibilities – that God is responsible and so forth – as being the fundamental here in terms of persistence and survival. We have to have an other-determinism at work or we get no persistence whatsoever. And so we get these postulated other-determinisms.
[19 MAY 1952] The Route to Infinity Lectures: Outline of Technique 80
How do you not discover – how do you not discover – a secret of existence? Well, the best way not to discover it is to back up from it and sit still. If you are going up toward infinity, for heaven’s sakes, examine infinity. Infinity would consist of everything, wouldn’t it, just at first glance and first analysis. And so that would mean sweeping action, it would mean sweeping decision, it would be “to be.” But in order to be you have to have willingness to be and as you go up the line – all angels have two faces: one white, one black – you have to be willing to destroy as well as willing to create. “To be” is everything and therefore as you go up the line, you have to be willing to risk, to dare.
[02 DECEMBER 1952] The Philadelphia Doctorate Course: A Thetan Creates by Postulates – Q2
Now, that which a person can create cannot have any great effect upon him. Anything that a person can create, change or destroy doesn’t have any large value to him.