From braintree!news.sprintlink.net!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!math.ohio-state.edu!cis.ohio-state.edu!nntp.sei.cmu.edu!bb3.andrew.cmu.edu!casaba.srv.cs.cmu.edu!dst Thu Nov 2 15:58:14 1995
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Dave Touretzky)
Subject: how to operate an E-meter
Date: 31 Oct 1995 08:57:42 GMT
Organization: School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon
References: <email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Xref: braintree alt.religion.scientology:120071 alt.clearing.technology:14948
Hubbard himself says that the E-meter is a Wheatstone bridge. The
following is a quote from page 1 of The Book Introducing the E-Meter,
"photographed and compiled from the lectures and demonstrations by L. RON
HUBBARD" (as it says on the title page):
"This is a Hubbard Electrometer called an E-Meter for short. Technically
it is a specially developed "Wheatstone Bridge" well known to electrically
minded people as a device to measure the amount of resistance to a flow
Come to think of it, given Scientology's fixation with removing "charge"
from the "reactive mind", all of us are "electrically minded people".
In addition to watching the needle swing back and forth, another thing a
Scientology auditor is trained to do is play constantly with the range
control (called a Tone Arm) to keep the needle from going off-scale.
Changes in the tone arm setting (or "TA") supposedly indicate gross changes
in the subject's mental state. Downward change in TA (leftward motion of
the knob) is associated with the "release of charge", i.e., evidence that
progress is being made. There is even a special attachement to the tone arm
knob to tally leftward motions so you can track how much charge was released
during the auditing session. Of course the tone arm also has to move
rightward, but I think that's supposed to happen when the auditor has
latched on to some new engram that then has to be audited out (producing
leftward motion again.)
It's not as easy to work one of these gizmos as you might think. You have
to work the tone arm with one hand, give your auditing question, listen to
the preclear's response, properly acknowledge his utterance, and make notes
of responses and needle motions. The Scientology training focuses on issues
such as being able to instanty recognize the ten main kinds of needle
motions and what they mean, and knowing when a needle movement is
significant and when it should be ignored. (The significant ones are the
ones that occur right at the end of the preclear's utterance. Movements
that occur in the middle of an utterance may indicate charge attached to
some word taken in isolation, but don't indicate the charge state of the
engram the entire utterance is referencing.)
Yes, I realize this is all nonsense. But it's *elaborate* nonsense, and
requires some dedication to master.
One of the principles of Scientology is that you never pursue a question
past a floating needle (or "F/N"). The floating indication means that all
the charge has supposedly been released. Of course, if you do take a
question past an F/N, you will discover that the needle doesn't float any
more. How can that be, if the charge is all gone? Scientology has an
explanation for this: you're causing damage to the preclear, which means
that charge is now accumulating instead of being released, and this damage
then has to be audited away -- until, of course, you get back to an F/N.
Here's what I'm guessing is really going on. Being able to float the
needle requires the subject to produce a certain kind of biophysical
response (manifested as a slowly and continuously varying body resistance),
and it can be hard to keep this up. So as soon as you get an F/N you're
supposed to drop the question and move on to something else. This prevents
the preclear from discovering that an F/N doesn't really correlate with any
permanent change in his mental state. But the preclear has been trained to
produce brief F/Ns with some regularity, so if you do go past an F/N, and
you run the appropriate auditing process for that, you will eventually get
him to produce another one. The thing is, if you run no auditing process at
all and just say "Think of a cheeseburger. Thank you." over and over,
you're still going to get an F/N eventually. When you do, stop.
Hey, I think I just invented some new "tech". The L. Ronald McDonald
rundown: "Think of a cheeseburger. Thank you."
-- Dave Touretzky, KoX (SP4): would you like any fries with that?