Among the conditions purportedly treated were arthritis, allergies, asthma, some coronary difficulties, eye trouble, ulcers, migraine headaches, "sexual deviation" which for Hubbard included homosexuality , and even death. Dianetics is strongly related to the ideas of Sigmund Freud psychoanalysis and the ideas of William Sargant abreaction therapy. Hubbard borrowed ideas heavily also from Carl Jung, Spiegel hypnoanalysis , Korzybski theory of identity , Nandor Fodor prenatal and birth trauma , Otto Rank, and others.
Dianetics predates Hubbard's classification of Scientology as an "applied religious philosophy". Early in , he expanded his writings to include teachings related to the soul, or " thetan ". The Church of Scientology has prosecuted a number of people in court for unauthorized publication of Scientology and Dianetics copyrighted material. Ron Hubbard published Dianetics on May 9, , as a "branch of self-help psychology".
Many enthusiasts emerged to form groups to study and practice Dianetics. The atmosphere from which Dianetics was written about in this period was one of "excited experimentation". Roy Wallis writes that Hubbard's work was regarded as an "initial exploration" for further development.
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Hubbard always claimed that his ideas of Dianetics originated in the s and s. By his own account,  he had been injured by the premature detonation of a primer mechanism on a small depth charge that had become stuck in the launch rack aboard the navy ship he was assigned to in His injuries were mainly flash burns to his eyes and so was despatched ashore and he spent a great deal of his recovery time in the Oak Knoll Naval Hospital's library, despite claiming in his authorised biography that he was blinded.
In his Phoenix Lectures Series, Hubbard himself, explains that he took the opportunity to enter an office where research papers on the US Naval Medical Research Division's work on PTSD were kept in a filing cabinet and he spent the lunch hour free to read the notes left lying on the desk of the Naval Medical Officer involved. Much of what he learned then, along with his recent mastery of hypnotherapy technique by mail order, was influential in his later development of ideas and concepts for Dianetics Therapy from onwards.
All he needed was medical and scientific testing and approval from any source. However, his several attempts were blocked by several luminaries of the AMA American Medical Association in the years —, such as Professors Duncan Cameron and Allan Whyte White , who both were senior authorities within the AMA-funded Psychiatric Research Department, then conducting their own research into drug therapies and controversial psycho-surgical techniques on severely traumatised war veterans. Hubbard claimed in his several public lectures during the s to have "undertaken clinical research at several of the institutions" they, Cameron and Whyte, had directed.
It is thought that Hubbard simply privately visited patients and conducted unauthorised interviews with several war veterans suffering from Trauma, Psychosomatic illness and practiced some of the newly identified PTSD techniques being clinically tested by several AMA medical institutions after WW2. Winter, in Peoria, Winter, MD. Through the marketing efforts of Hubbard's friend and mentor John W. Campbell Jnr. See interviews with John Campbell in his published biography. Hubbard first introduced Dianetics to the public in the article Dianetics: The Evolution of a Science published in the May issue of the magazine Astounding Science Fiction.
When Dianetics was published in , Hubbard announced in the opening pages, "The first contribution of Dianetics is the discovery that the problems of thought and mental function can be resolved within the bounds of the finite universe, which is to say that all data needful to the solution of mental action and Man's endeavor can be measured, sensed and experienced as scientific truths independent of mysticism or metaphysics.
Publication of Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health brought in a flood of money, which Hubbard used to establish Dianetics foundations in six major American cities. Urban asserted that the initial success of Dianetics was reflective of Hubbard's "remarkable entrepreneurial skills. Some of the initial strongest supporters of Dianetics in the s were John W.
Campbell published some of Hubbard's short stories and Winter hoped that his colleagues would likewise be attracted to Hubbard's Dianetics system. Sociologist Roy Wallis says it was Dianetics popularity as a lay psychotherapy that contributed to the Foundation's downfall. It was the craze of , but the fad was dead by Most people read the book, tried it out, then put it down.
The remaining practitioners had no ties to the Foundation and resisted its control. Because there were no trained Dianetics professionals, factions formed. The followers challenged Hubbard's movement and his authority. Wallis suggests Hubbard learned an implicit lesson from this experience. He would not make the same mistake when creating Scientology. The Foundation closed its doors when Hubbard ditched the Foundation, causing the proceedings to be vacated, but its creditors began to demand settlement of its outstanding debts.
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Don Purcell, a millionaire Dianeticist from Wichita, Kansas , offered a brief respite from bankruptcy, but the Wichita Foundation's finances soon failed again in when Hubbard ran off to Phoenix with all his Dianetics materials to avoid the court bailiffs sent in by Don Purcell, who had paid a considerable amount of money to Hubbard for the copyrights to Dianetics in an effort to keep Hubbard from bankruptcy again.
In , Hubbard defined Scientology as a religion focused on the spirit, differentiating it from Dianetics, and subsequently Dianetics Auditing Therapy, which he defined as a counseling based science that addressed the physical being. He stated, "Dianetics is a science which applies to man, a living organism; and Scientology is a religion. Purcell later donated the copyright ownership back to Hubbard after Winter and Van Vogt had independently negotiated charitable debt relief with the disenchanted oil millionaire Purcell.
With the temporary sale of assets resulting from the HDRF's bankruptcy, Hubbard no longer owned the rights to the name "Dianetics",  but its philosophical framework still provided the seed for Scientology to grow. In and again in May , Hubbard reorganized the material in Dianetics, the auditing commands, and original Volney Mathieson invented E-meter use, naming the package "Standard Dianetics. This gives the complete steps of Routine 3-R Revised. The course consists of 11 rundowns and requires a specifically trained auditor.
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In the book, Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health , Hubbard describes techniques that he suggests can rid individuals of fears and psychosomatic illnesses. A basic idea in Dianetics is that the mind consists of two parts: the "analytical mind" and the " reactive mind. Experiences such as these, stored in the "reactive mind" are dubbed " engrams ". Dianetics is proposed as a method to erase these engrams in the reactive mind to achieve a state of clear. Hubbard described Dianetics as "an organized science of thought built on definite axioms: statements of natural laws on the order of those of the physical sciences".
In Dianetics, the unconscious or reactive mind is described as a collection of "mental image pictures," which contain the recorded experience of past moments of unconsciousness, including all sensory perceptions and feelings involved, ranging from pre-natal experiences, infancy and childhood, to even the traumatic feelings associated with events from past lives and extraterrestrial cultures. The type of mental image picture created during a period of unconsciousness involves the exact recording of a painful experience.
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Hubbard called this phenomenon an engram , and defined it as "a complete recording of a moment of unconsciousness containing physical pain or painful emotion and all perceptions. Hubbard said that in Dianetics, it was the analytical mind and not the reactive mind that was the most important because the analytical mind "computes decisions" even when these are dictated by the reactive mind.
The damage and aberration caused by the reactive mind would not be possible without the analytic mind. Hubbard stated, "the analytical is so important to the intelligent being and the somatic mind so important to the athlete that Dianetics processing can be said to consist of deintensifying the reactive mind so that the analytical and somatic minds can be free to function properly.
Hubbard proposed that painful physical or emotional traumas caused "aberrations" deviations from rational thinking in the mind, which produced lasting adverse physical and emotional effects, similar to conversion disorders. When the analytical conscious mind shut down during these moments, events and perceptions of this period were stored as engrams in the unconscious or reactive mind.
In Hubbard's earliest publications on the subject, engrams were variously referred to as "Norns",  "Impediments," and "comanomes" before "engram" was adapted from its existing usage at the suggestion of Joseph Augustus Winter, MD. Hubbard claimed that these engrams are the cause of almost all psychological and physical problems. In addition to physical pain, engrams could include words or phrases spoken in the vicinity while the patient was unconscious. For instance, Winter cites the example of a patient with a persistent headache supposedly tracing the problem to a doctor saying, "Take him now," during the patient's birth.
And it is the only thing in the human being which can produce these effects Discharge the content of [the reactive mind] and the arthritis vanishes, myopia gets better, heart illness decreases, asthma disappears, stomachs function properly and the whole catalog of ills goes away and stays away.
Hubbard defined the third mind, or the somatic mind, as "that mind which, directed by the analytical or reactive mind, places solution into effect on the physical level. When a person is "aberrated," the reactive mind controls the somatic mind. Some of the psychometric ideas in Dianetics, in particular the E-meter , can be traced to Carl Jung.
Basic concepts, including conversion disorder , are derived from Sigmund Freud , whom Hubbard credited as an inspiration and source. Such a chain would be relieved by inducing the patient to remember the earliest trauma, "with an accompanying expression of emotion.
According to Bent Corydon, Hubbard created the illusion that Dianetics was the first psychotherapy to address traumatic experiences in their own time, but others had done so as standard procedure. One treatment method Hubbard drew from in developing Dianetics was abreaction therapy. Abreaction is a psychoanalytical term that means bringing to consciousness , and thus adequate expression, material that has been unconscious. This process is usually facilitated by the patient's gaining awareness of the causal relationship between the previously undischarged emotion and his symptoms.
According to Hubbard, before Dianetics psychotherapists had dealt with very light and superficial incidents e. He emphasized: "The discovery of the engram is entirely the property of Dianetics. Methods of its erasure are also owned entirely by Dianetics While style Dianetics was in some respects similar to older therapies, with the development of New Era Dianetics in , the similarity vanished.
New Era Dianetics uses an E-Meter and a rote procedure  for running chains of related traumatic incidents.
Dianetics clarifies the understanding of psychosomatic illness in terms of predisposition , precipitation , and prolongation. With the use of Dianetics techniques, Hubbard claimed, the reactive mind could be processed and all stored engrams could be refiled as experience. The central technique was "auditing," a two-person question-and-answer therapy designed to isolate and dissipate engrams or "mental masses".
An auditor addresses questions to a subject, observes and records the subject's responses, and returns repeatedly to experiences or areas under discussion that appear painful until the troubling experience has been identified and confronted. Through repeated applications of this method, the reactive mind could be "cleared" of its content having outlived its usefulness in the process of evolution ; a person who has completed this process would be "Clear".
The benefits of going Clear, according to Hubbard, were dramatic. A Clear would have no compulsions, repressions, psychoses or neuroses , and would enjoy a near-perfect memory as well as a rise in IQ of as much as 50 points. He also claimed that "the atheist is activated by engrams as thoroughly as the zealot".
One of the key ideas of Dianetics, according to Hubbard, is the fundamental existential command to survive.