On Sunday, 8th February 2015, ex-members of the Church of Scientology in South Africa came together to celebrate a landmark event – the first “South African Indie Event” – which took place in Johannesburg. The event was attended by international guest speakers, Mark Shreffler and Tami & Dani Lemberger.
Dani Lemberger was asked by the hosts to tell the story of the success of Dror Center. AFSI has recently received the transcript of his talk. Here it is:
Good morning, thank you for attending today. Tami and I are honored by your invitation to address this gathering. I was asked to talk about our success at Dror Center.
Dror Center was founded by Tami & Dani Lemberger 23 years ago, in Feb 1992. Dror, in Hebrew, means Freedom. So it is ‘Freedom Center.’
At the time, we had just returned home, Haifa, Israel, after 6 years in the U.S., last 2 years at Flag. We both completed OT VI in Nov 1991 and were both solo auditing on Solo NOTs, OT7.
At Flag, Tami trained as a Grad 5 Auditor and C/S. I trained on Admin Tech, Exec Statuses, Ethics Specialist, Course Supervisor and earlier as a Class 5 Auditor.
Dror began delivery of Scientology courses and auditing in Feb 1992 as a field group. It later became a Mission of Scientology. Dror expanded steadily, around 2005 we had 6 staff and approximately 50 public on lines.
Here are our stats for the last two years:
Here’s who we are:
[AFSI: This data was also published on Mike Rinder’s blog.]
What is Dror doing? Every company has a “Product Catalog”, here’s our product catalog. We’re in the Freedom business, like our name states. We deliver “The Bridge to Spiritual Freedom”, as developed by LRH:
This Bridge may be different from what you’ve seen elsewhere. I know that there are other “Bridges” in use. Our Bridge was derived by tech experts of the Association of Free Scientologists Israel, the AFSI, based on much study and research.
So the product we deliver is “Freedom.” What’s freedom?
“Freedom: The component parts of freedom are then: affinity, reality and communication, which summate into understanding. Once understanding is attained, freedom is obtained.” (LRH, Tech Dictionary)
Scientology provides an understanding of self and of life. This results in Freedom. Why freedom? Nelson Mandela fought for freedom, why? I guess it is an essential part of survival, asserting self-determinism, rejecting other-determinism and achieving KRC (the Knowledge-Responsibility-Control triangle) on your eight dynamics.
Tami and I spent some time yesterday at the Nelson Mandela Square in Standton. A poster is hanging there of Mandela with this saying: “May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.” I think that too could serve as a perfect definition of freedom.
Now, how do we get people to reach for freedom? To trust us? To demand our services? How do we keep our exchange in with the public? Here’s the trick, taken from an LRH lecture of 6 Dec 1959, “Promotion & Registration”:
“The funny part of it is – get this magic – all you’ve got to do is take responsibility for people and be interested in people, and make sure that those people are interested in what’s going on and you can’t drive them away from the door.
“And if all you’re interested in is cash, they stay away in droves. Cash is trash where a thetan is concerned.
“Now, I don’t mean to make you disrespectful of cash, but if you take thorough responsibility for the person, he’ll turn over his whole bank account, he won’t just pay you five hundred dollars for a student course. It’s easy to that degree.”
I was given this quote by my good friend, Rick Alexander, a class XII auditor at Flag. Rick was proud of what we were doing in the Holy Land and always had a useful tip for me.
What are we striving for? To become Free Thetans:
“Free Thetan: Was somebody who was free of a body. He wasn’t free of organizational commitments or ethics, but he was free of a body.” (LRH, Tech Dictionary)
We are all bound by Ethics. Ethics is for oneself. Not church-type punishment “ethics” but the enhancement of one’s own survival. Two years ago, Tami and I spent a week with Mary and Frankie Freeman in Idaho. We studied the “Personal Integrity Program”, developed under Ron in the 1970’s. It is brilliant, ethics applied to the individual, for his own use. We now deliver it at Dror Center with great success.
Ron says in the above quote, “organizational commitments.” Experience tells us that one can only survive or create anything with a group. Yet one remains free when the group is one that he chooses; when one’s obligations are self-determined. Above responsibility there is still Power of Choice.
Thus we are all members of many teams.
“Team: A team has a tendency to know what the other team members are doing and thinking and coordinates thereby. It is people who cooperate one with another to push forward a common purpose and they normally get along great.” (LRH, Modern Management Technology Defined, MMTD)
This does not say we agree on everything. We are NOT identical robots. There are now thousands of us pushing forward the purpose of making a better world using LRH Tech, but we have different ways of doing it, slight variation in technique, in application.
Who are our team-mates? What is a team-mate?
“Team-mate: Someone who assists in the overwhelming of the enemy.” (LRH, MMTD)
A team-mate cooperates in forwarding a common purpose and assists in fighting the enemies to that purpose. Who are the enemies?
“Enemies: Things, groups, other determinisms that challenged or sought to stop… the basic purpose became enemies or opposition.” (LRH, MMTD)
Our enemies are those in opposition to our purpose, primarily the “church” operated by David Miscavige. We want LRH’s Tech to remain free and available to all. He wants to prevent use of the Tech, to monopolize it and subvert its use for the object of buying buildings and extorting money under false representations. Enemies are also people who attack LRH, who mock Scientology and deny its workability, such as Tony Ortega or Larry Wright or Alex Gibney and HBO. They are not on our team.
A group to function and prosper must have agreed-upon policies that the group follows.
“Policy: – Prudence or wisdom. – Policy is a growing thing. What works well today, becomes tomorrow’s policy. – All policies actually derive from group experience, which adds up to group agreement. – Policy is derived from successful experience in forwarding the basic purposes.” (LRH, MMTD)
Thus policy is dynamic, it is evolving, derived from group experience. If you are forced to do something which hampers the purpose, it is not policy. It must be denied, rejected by the group. The leader of the group guides the process of creating group agreement around its policies. The leader protects the group, so the group can develop policy and follow it without exterior pressures or interference.
At Dror, around 2005 we had six staff and about 50 public on lines, yet we hit a “glass ceiling”, couldn’t expand further. No new public was coming on-lines for a long time. Our active public, who tried to disseminate, told us, “people don’t want to come, it’s a church…”. People who did come in refused to stay after finding out we’re part of a “dangerous cult”. I knew that a long-term Emergency would turn into a Danger and then we will inevitably spiral down to Non-Existence.
I also saw other missions in Israel shrinking and Church Orgs in Israel and the United States emptying. Our prospects were grim.
Around that time I did the Data Series Evaluator’s Course at the TAV Org. It is packed full with vital know-how on analysis of data, handling out-points and de-bugging any situation based on stats. These are fundamentals an exec must have. I was looking for an answer to, “Why can’t I get Dror back to expand?”
“The Why: – The why will be how come the situation is such a departure from the ideal scene and will open the door to handling. – That basic outness found which will lead to a recovery of stats.” (LRH, MMTD)
The why is something that you are cause over. You find it and if it’s the right why, and you handle what’s found, you have stats rising again.
We found ourselves in a catch-22. We couldn’t be cause over the Church’s image and terrible reputation as a dangerous cult. There was nothing we could do about the vast resources being wasted on useless buildings. There was no promotion of Scientology, but arbitrary obstacles to the training of auditors and constant stops on the practice of auditing by field auditors and missions.
Our public was being blocked from progress on the Bridge because they had to travel far, at huge costs, to attest Clear and do their OT Levels. People developed fear from going to the AO’s or the Tel Aviv Org due to constant fund-raising and pressure to join staff. Scientology had not only ceased to be fun, it became impossible to do. And there was nothing I could do about it.
The thought of leaving the Church never crossed my mind, until 2012. I saw the church sliding; I knew there was no expansion, that we were being lied to at events, that Dror will decline same as the whole Scn network. Yet, there was no handling that I could cause.
Anything I dared to say while at Flag from 1992 until 2010, on auditing lines, was labeled “natter” and I was being sec-checked, at huge cost to myself, as a punishment to shut me up. We finally got booted, in July 2012.
Looking back, I can see they did the “Why handling” for me! The Why for our lowered stats was the connection to the church. Since leaving we are at cause over our production and stats are rising again!
The leader of the group and the group itself must have Ethics Presence.
“Ethics presence: Is an “X” quality made up of … endurance. Endurance asserts the truth of unkillability. The way you continue to have ethics presence is to be maximally right in your actions, decisions and dictates.” (LRH, MMTD)
”Endurance asserts the truth of unkillability.” What a beautiful line. Many years of staying your course, loyal to your basic purpose while overcoming obstacles. We at Dror have been at it only 23 years. Mark Shreffler has been disseminating LRH Tech for 30-40 years. When he couldn’t do it within the church, Shreff left the church and is still pushing the same purpose.
Our hosts, Gaye & Ernest Corbett, have been at it since the 1970’s, inside or outside the church. These people have tremendous Ethics Presence and we admire them for not wavering, not despairing. For their own loyalty to what they know is true.
The dedication of those present here and our team-mates around the world, forwards the basic purpose of freedom and of a better world.
Ron also says, “To be maximally right in your actions, decisions and dictates.” Are we maximally right? History will judge. If we prevail and salvage LRH Tech from oblivion or perversion, we would have won. We would be proven in the future to have been “maximally right” if we continue to deliver the Bridge, many years after the church is gone and forgotten.
Thank you for being here today. Thank you for doing daily what you’re doing for LRH. Our gratitude is extended for your tenacity, for persevering despite all attacks on us.