Some people have been very fond of rushing up to me and saying, “You know, I’ve got a big idea of how we can sell Dianetics to psychiatry!” I can just see some fellow standing on a man-of-war, up on the signal platform working the shutter of a big searchlight, and it is going bippity-bap, bippitybap, and he is signaling to a submarine that is three hundred feet deep with no periscope up. The person rushing up to me saying “I know how we can sell Dianetics to psychiatry” is telling me to start that searchlight going. That is a waste of effort. As a matter of fact, I tried honestly and sincerely for quite a period of time down in Washington, D.C. (which is one of the nests of psychiatry in this country; it is infested), to deliver anything I could to psychiatrists.
They would come and listen to talks on Dianetics. We had a class going, and they would come in and hear the first talk: “This is Dianetics: C-A-T, cat.” And then they were supposed to go on to another class and they could be taught there. This was all free.
But night after night the same psychiatrists would come in and listen to the “C-A-T, cat” beginning lecture, and they would always say, “Ahhhh.” Then the next night you would say, “C-A-T, cat” about Dianetics and they would say, “Ahhhh.”
After about the fourth or fifth night of talking to the same people I got the idea that they weren’t quite getting what I was talking about! So I asked one of them, “When I talk about narcosynthesis, does it make sense to you what I say about narcosynthesis? That is to say, does it register with you that you can shove a needle in a patient and then tell the patient things which register with him and will become compulsive with him?”
“Well, as a matter of fact,” he said, “I was a part of the government project on narcosynthesis. As a matter of fact, I had a unit in North Africa on the subject.”
And I said, “Thank you. But does this make sense to you?”
“That’s right! That’s right. I was in North Africa for about three months. We had over two thousand cases under narcosynthesis there.”
“Yeah. But when you shoot the patient in the arm and tell him something, have you found out that it becomes compulsive to the patient afterwards on the order of a posthypnotic suggestion?”
“We came back in May of ‘45.” I went down the tone scale.
One woman psychiatrist turned to another doctor one night and said, “Doctor, doctor, please, please tell me, please tell me that babies can’t know anything, please!”
The doctor looked at me and he looked at her and he said, “Well, really, I don’t know.” “No! No! Please tell me!”
“Well, all right–babies can’t know anything.”
And she smiled and sat back. That got a load off her chest!
This was happening day after day after day, week after week. All these people were perfectly friendly to me but they were completely out of communication.1
- Hubbard, L. R. (1951, 6 August). Survival Processing. Professional Course, (5108C06B). Lecture conducted from Wichita, Kansas. ↩