Inside Scientology

First-hand accounts of the Scientology Experience

Joyce Stephenson's letter

[Editor's note:  A serious effort was made to produce an accurate
text of Joyce Stephenson's affidavit here, but the copy available to
the editor seems to have defects in the middle of it.  If strict
accuracy is required, it will be necessary to consult a different
copy.  Any defects are a result of faulty transmission, not the fault
of Joyce Stephenson.]



12021 Valleyheart Drive #202
Studio City, California 91604

August 30, 1989

Dear Margery,

Here is a brief statement of some of my personal experiences with 
Scientology.  I was involved with Scientology for close to 20 years part
of this time was spent as a staff member.  I can honestly say that being
a staff member was the worst experience of my life - long hours, low pay,
severe punishment for minor infractions such as being thrown into the lake
at St. Hill, England, for auditing errors.  I finally resigned in 1983
after finding out about Ron Hubbard mainly from former members who were
close to him and now were telling the real story. My experiences, in 
comparison, were nothing compared to some of the horror stories I heard.
The most recent incident (which I think was the most traumatic) occurred
in 1984/5. A friend of mine (who was also the mother-in-law of David
Miscavage who is now one of the top people in the organization) called me
in great distress. I believe her words were "They are trying to kill
me - Can you come right away - I feel like I am dying." When I arrived
she was in bed and could scarcely move her eyes because of the pain in
her head. I tried unsuccessfully to get her to a doctor - when I mentioned 
the word  [Here some of the text is missing.]  The secret part of
Scientology - the so-called upper levels - tell people that their whole
body is infested with countless numbers of spirits that cause every ache
and pain.  Every mental picture that you have is really one of these other
entities' pictures - not yours. They tell you that you are clear (from
Dianetics) and you no longer have mental pictures. She totally believed that
her body would get well if the BTs would go away.  The pain was actually
caused by an aneurysm (abnormal dilation of an artery in her head) and it
was not until she collapsed 5-6 months later that this condition was
discovered. She had surgery - which was "fairly successful", I suppose - she
had some memory problems. Because of her inability to work, her lessened
mental awareness, and because her two daughters still in Scientology had
virtually abandoned her, she became very depressed. I was not much help, I
myself have suffered high anxiety, nightmares and phobias as a result of 
being in Scientology. The bad far outweighed the good, in my opinion.

I know of at least 500 ex-members who have a law suit (class action) against
Scientology in Los Angeles.

Margery, you are not a lone disaffected member. There are thousands.  Most
of them are probably afraid - thank God for people like you.

You have my support absolutely.

Perhaps your courage will inspire others to speak out and let the public 
know what a destructive organization Scientology really is.

I am telling everyone I know what your predicament is so hopefully they
will be courageous enough to write of their experiences, too.

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