Daily Archives: April 12, 2011

What’s all this about the “Mayo Myth?”

Marty’s latest concerns what he calls the Mayo Myth (catchy title, by the way). It’s a Scientology sore point – the idea that David Mayo, a Scientologist who was close to founder L. Ron Hubbard, actually wrote some of Scientology’s upper-level (read: expensive) materials – specifically New Era Dianetics for Operating Thetans, a.k.a. “NED for OTs” or “NOTs”, which encompasses OT levels 5 through 7.

Why is this important? Obviously, every Scientologist is concerned with the origin of the doctrine. After all, this is supposed to be LRH’s “tech,” and the idea of Mayo writing the NOTs materials is similar in magnitude to a revelation that God had help creating the earth. (I’ve always suspected Him of subcontracting out the birds and reptiles.) Doubters claim that LRH came up with the materials and Mayo merely transcribed them.

For Marty, the issue isn’t just about authorship – it’s whether Mayo’s materials are legitimate. Those materials are in the public domain, but merely reading them isn’t enough; you need an auditor to deliver them. If the Mayo materials are legit, Marty can deliver them to paying customers – specifically mid-level OTs, the folks with motivation and money.

Now, some might say it’s unfair to accuse Marty of having a financial motivation; after all, he doesn’t charge sky-high prices like the Church. He claims to ask people to donate what they feel the services are worth. But what do you think someone who is prepared to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Co$ for the OT levels would be willing to pay to Marty? Twenty bucks? No way, Jose. I’m sure Marty, just like David Miscavige, has realize that OTs are where the dough is. Why hit up his dozens of blog commenters for a few hundred bucks of lower-level auditing, when all he needs is two or three OTs on the hook to pay off his house? For the record, I think Marty really does believe in this shit, but which would you prefer – salvage the universe, or salvage the universe and get your bills paid?

Anyway, back to Marty, Mayo and the NOTs. The Church’s big claim against Marty Rathbun is that he’s a squirrel and doesn’t have proper materials to deliver. That’s the reason many Scientologists cling to the Church – as one Scn friend put it to me, if you go to the Free Zone, “How do you know you’re getting the right stuff?” Remember, Scientologists believe that LRH’s “tech” must be applied exactly as written or it won’t work. Having accurate materials is key.

So if Marty can convince people that Mayo’s NOTs material are correct, he’s got a good business opportunity. (And if he can convince people that the Church’s materials have been altered (or “squirreled”), that’s even better, because he can make money and live out his revenge fantasies against David Miscavige.)

Now, if Scientology really worked, this would be a simple issue to solve: Simply see which folks have the abilities promised by the OT levels. Unfortunately, it’s not so easy – by the time he got to the OT levels, Hubbard shied away from solid claims like he made for Dianetics. Furthermore, asking an OT to demonstrate his “abilities” is not allowed – nor is discussion of what happens on the OT levels. That leaves Scientologists crediting all of their good fortune, explicable or not, to Scientology and their “OT abilities,” while skeptics stand at the sidelines and call “Bullshit.”

Did Mayo really write the NOTs? I don’t know and I don’t care. I suspect his role was much like Marty said; after all, LRH wasn’t one to share the spotlight. That said, it’s in Marty’s best financial interests if people think that the Mayo materials really were written by LRH.

Not that it matters much. For both Marty and the Church, it’s important to keep people focused on things like this – anything to distract them from thinking critically about the “tech” for which they are paying so much money.