A man is as well off as he can consider himself dangerous to his environment.
I will tell you a little short anecdote, which is quite amusing. Well, sometime early in 1945 I flunked my overseas examination. Well, I crawled around and felt sorry for myself, and the fact of it was that the Judo instructor there at the hospital brought up the idea that there was a shortage of people in the war — there was. So he kept up my training for me. I think it was July 25th that I went down to Hollywood and three sailors with Petty Officers’ ratings accosted me on the street. They were drunk. They were out to kill officers. And the three of them tied into me. An unbelievable thing happened. One of them turned me around facing him while the second one took a heavy beer bottle to bring it down on my skull. I took the fellow who brought the beer bottle down, threw him over my head into this fellow, who went down and hit the side of a bumper. The beer bottle hit the pavement, broke the end off, and the other fellow reared up where he had been sitting on the running board of a car, and I put it in his face. That’s what you are trained to do.
Overnight, the wound in my side healed — overnight. They wouldn’t let me out at all, but I could get extended leave from the hospital. I went down to Hollywood and messed around at the studios. In the middle of all that I managed to complete all the researches which I’d stacked up and which had been interrupted by the war.
Steam. . . where had it come from? You get your teeth shoved in this way and that, and you develop a tremendous amount of inflow. And then one day you just outflow! The Chief Petty Officer in charge of the Shore Patrol had been sitting at his desk, telling me, “Under no circumstances should you have taken any action. You were trifling with your life.” Telling me what a good boy I ought to be. And then through the door he saw the Shore Patrol bring these people in. Of course, they were all saturated with blood, and they were all messed up. And he just shut up right then!
He was running the usual social dramatization — ”You must protect yourself.” The society teaches you to hold in. All you have to do to somebody is to prevent him from outflowing to make him ill. And someday he decides to outflow. Not only the social world but the world of yourself can act to cause you to prevent outflow. Outflow is prevented by regret, it is prevented by all sorts of things. If one has something terrifically valuable he protects it — which is what? Prevent an inflow! Well, when you say prevent an inflow you might as well say prevent an outflow. If you hold flows from coming in toward you you might as well flow them in, because sooner or later that dike that you put up is going to burst. So you get these confounded actions in this universe composing a picture of tremendous inflow, not balanced at all by outflow.
What does this all add up to? Any time that you protect and defend, you are aiding and abetting all the structures which make up this universe. The child who is taught to defend himself against these big, vicious automobiles some day turns out to be one of the lousiest drivers you ever saw, because he is taught to defend and protect. All you have to assume is that safety is desirable to have all of the ills of Pandora’s box swarm around your head.
Just what boxing glove can hit a thetan I wouldn’t know. A thetan has to mock himself up to be reachable. You are dealing with the idea of what a person is supposed to feel as a result of, when it comes to inflows. And that’s just an idea. If a person over-defends himself through some exaggerated idea of pain, he will suffer the full consequences of that over-defense, just to the degree that anybody else over-defends himself to that degree.
So the reason for the defense or the reason for safety is variable, but the consequences of it aren’t. As long as you deal with masses, and agreements and ideas directly concerning masses, you are all right. But when you go back into an opinion of what it ought to be as far as the preclear is concerned, you are of course immediately in trouble. Any auditor who is having a rough time with preclears, not snapping them out of the hop immediately, is paying attention to this factor, which is a variable, which is opinion. Figure-figure, ideas, ideas, ideas.
Suppose we had no cops in the society but there was the idea around that there were cops. We would get some of the nuttiest ideas you have ever heard of! We would have a set of ideas about cops, different for each person in the entire community. Why? Because there is no way to experience cops. Cops are an idea which one cannot get into communication with; therefore we get this great oddity — abundance and scarcity. Only it isn’t actually the possession of quantity; it is only apparently quantitative. It is having something to go into communication with.
I’m very sure that the whole world of disease is built entirely on this mechanism. I seriously doubt the existence of any given germ — I seriously doubt it. It is very embarrassing to men in sailing ships and so on, very embarrassing to these fellows, to have venereal diseases happen when they have had no contact with women at all. And I have seen that often enough in young boys that were as pure as the driven lily to understand completely that we didn’t have here a germ at work. We had a series of ideas at work. Fascinating subject in view of the fact that it has ruined as many lives down the decades and centuries as it has. When you socially enter a great many prohibitions against communication on the second dynamic, you will get all sorts of interesting ideas.
Aberration is caused by cut communication with the mass, and is remedied by re- established communication with the mass. Look what they are doing with the A-bomb. This is one of the silliest things you ever saw in your life. They make everything about it confidential, secret, and nobody must be let in on it.
And there is possibly no more illness to radiation than that.
The formula for creating an illness is to establish a terminal, get everybody convinced that this terminal is there, and refuse to let them communicate with it.
Now one of the dangerous things to do with Scientology would be to put it under the counter. In the first place it isn’t a terminal. A terminal, however, must be maintained, and access to that terminal must be preserved. And it mustn’t be put on confidential, any part of it. Why? Because it’s already dynamite. We do anything with it that can be done with anything. Let’s not cut a line to it and let’s not put it beyond reach. There would be a certain fatality in doing that. And yet every group that has ever learned a series of great truths has inevitably gone into secret priesthoods concerning them, which was of course a destructive action.
It isn’t jumping into ten thousand volts of current that electrocutes a man. It’s having so many times in the past disconnected from electricity when confronted with it. Every time you disconnect you to that degree lower your own tolerance.
Obviously the electricity flying through these poles is more real to the individual being the line than the actual terminal of the pole. Why is it more real to him and his body? Because it has the greatest effect on him and his body. He can touch the pole, but he can’t touch the juice. That tells you there must be some terrific reality about the dangerousness of this juice, and the pole is either in apathy or non-existent. Therefore you can only teach one thing to a preclear, horribly enough, and that is — ”You can communicate with it.” The communication with a mass is the only thing we can do for him, but we have to have a mass.
We can get him to conceive of an is-ness, and we can get him to communicate with it, and by this he will change his mind concerning its existence. He will change his mind concerning its conditions, but most particularly and more important to you, he will change his mind with regard to its abundance or scarcity, and therefore its importance. It is the scarcity or abundance of things which denotes their value or importance. A man who has lived too long without women will consider women dangerous.
So scarcities and abundances do declare the final state of one’s reactions to anything. When something becomes very scarce it is because one has cut communication, and that action of cutting communication is the same action of defending or protecting self. Now as I say, you can break out of this. You can have this tremendous resurgence. You can outflow. You can act. And that’s all there is behind one of these resurgences, by the way, there are no other factors. Or you, as an auditor, can bring him gently and quietly up on a gradient scale until he can again communicate with the objects in his environment, and he again will experience the same thing he experienced when he did this tremendous outflow. We are reaching towards the same goals but we’re saying that by communication we establish the is-ness of existence, and by doing that, why, we make people well.