SCN 8-8008: Affinity, Communication and Reality

This paper presents Section 9 from the book SCIENTOLOGY 8-8008 by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Church of Scientology (1952).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


Affinity, Communication and Reality

In human experience, which is probably an experience senior to and creative of such a thing as the material universe, space, energy and matter become beingness, doingness and havingness.

There is a spiritual dimension parallel to the physical dimension. The human experience is a combination of both physical and spiritual dimensions.

Beingness is space regardless of energy and matter; doingness requires both space and matter; and havingness requires space and energy.

Human experience proceeds from a viewpoint that is anchored in a human body. Beingness is the space and awareness of the person of himself. Doingness and havingness proceed from this beingness.

We have a gradient scale from space to matter which starts at the arbitrary number of 40.0 for our purposes and goes down to 0.0 for the purposes of Homo sapiens and to -8.0 for the purposes of estimating a thetan. This gradient scale is called the tone scale.

A person’s awareness rises as his viewpoint broadens from material into spiritual dimension. On a tone scale, the viewpoint as a body may be assigned a value 0.0, and a broad universal viewpoint may be assigned a value 40.0.

Space is found to be a broad characteristic from top to bottom of the scale and necessary to each part of it, but it is discovered that one has less and less space the more the scale is descended. If one were to attain zero space for himself, he would attain, even as a thetan, zero. That the body has space and the thetan apparently, to himself, does not have space, is responsible mainly for the feeling of not-beingness on the part of the thetan which causes him to forget his own identity.

At 0.0 one has physical awareness as a body, but no spiritual awareness as a person.

On this tone-scale, we have a theoretical point of no energy at 40.0, and a point where energy begins to be solid around 0.0; well below this level we have matter formed of the type known in the material universe. Thus one can see that this tone-scale is a gradient scale of energy, and that the energy is free toward the top of the scale and becomes less free and more fixed as one descends the scale.

Below 0.0 there is no awareness as a body even. There is only dying matter. As one ascends the tone scale from 0.0, there is increasing life and broadening of viewpoint. At 40.0 one has attained a broad universal viewpoint that includes complete physical and spiritual awareness.

A very important triangle in Scientology is the triangle called ARC. This stands for Affinity, Reality and Communication. It was used for some time before its relation to energy was understood.

Associated with viewpoint are affinity, reality and communication.

Affinity is wave characteristic and is the range of human emotions. Human emotions manifest themselves in energy flows, dispersals and ridges. As the emotions drop down from high on the scale to low on the scale, they are found to follow a cycle of dispersals, flows and ridges. Each dispersal has a harmonic on the scale, each flow has a harmonic and each ridge has a harmonic. Looking up the scale from zero one finds death as a ridge and, in human emotion, an apathy. Apathy reaches up some extent from death but at this end the harmonics are very close together and there are two unnamed human emotions immediately above apathy. One of them, next above apathy, is a flow; immediately above that there is a fearlike dispersal. The next named emotion above apathy is grief. Grief is a ridge and is occasioned by loss. Immediately above grief there is a flow. The next named emotion, however, is the next level, the dispersal called fear which is a drawing away. There is a flow immediately above this called covert hostility. Above covert hostility is anger which is a solid ridge. Between anger at 1.5 and antagonism at 2.0 there is a dispersal—unnamed but visible in behaviour. At 2.0 we have the flow outgoing called antagonism. Above this at 2.5 there is an idle dispersal known as boredom. Above boredom at 3.0 is a ridge called conservatism. At 4.0 we have another flow called enthusiasm. Each one of these points is a harmonic of a lower point. The characteristic of energy whether a flow, dispersal or ridge, expresses itself in human emotion in terms of affinity. Affinity is the cohesiveness of human relationships, and can be acceptance or rejection of such relationships. Affinity as here used is a degree of emotion. Its equivalent in the MEST universe is the cohesion and adhesion or revulsion from matter and energy itself as found in positive and negative currents, and in forms of matter.

According to Hubbard, affinity manifests itself as a whole range of emotions that follow a cycles of dispersals, flows, and ridges. A ridge is fixed attention. In dispersal the attention is all over the place. In a flow the attention has a direction.

Death is a ridge. Above that is the range of apathy containing a flow and dispersal. Above that is a ridge of grief and then a flow. Above that is fear, a dispersal of drawing away. Above that is a flow of covert hostility and a solid ridge of anger. Above that are dispersal and an outgoing flow of antagonism. Above that are an idle dispersal of boredom and a ridge of conservatism. Above that is a flow of enthusiasm.

Affinity is a condition of the mental matrix. It is a degree of emotion that figures in human relationships. It manifests as acceptance or rejection.

Communication is an interchange of energy from one beingness to another; in the thetan and in Homo sapiens communication is known as perception. It is not solely talk, which is a symbolized form of communication which sums ideas which are themselves either a product of the tone-scale or are above the tone-scale as the case may be. Sight, of course, is at the wavelength of light. Sound is recorded as hearing. Tactile and smell are low-level wave types of the particle variety. And all other perceptions can be found on this gradient scale of wavelengths, modified by the wave characteristic in terms of type, whether sine or more complex. The auditor must realize that communication is essentially directed or received energy and is inhibited by the willingness or unwillingness of the preclear to take responsibility for energy or forms of energy. Where responsibility is low, perception is low.

In communication, beingness perceives dimension points and assimilates them in its mental matrix. It then puts out dimension points in response. These dimension points are then perceived by the other beingness and the same process takes place there. This cycle then repeats. These dimension points have the characteristics of energy and direction. Mental matrix has the characteristics of responsibility, willingness, etc.

Reality is established by wave direction or lack of motion.

As one ascends the tone scale from 0.0 he finds the realities are strongest at the points of flow and are weakest at the points where there are ridges on the scale.

The reality of apathy, grief and anger is very poor, but in the immediate vicinity of these there are more intense realities. Reality is established by agreement or disagreement or no opinion. Agreement is an inflow to the individual; disagreement is outflow from the Individual; no opinion can be established by the proximity of the individual to the centre of a dispersal or by a ridge.

Reality is established by subjectivity or objectivity of the viewpoint. Reality is most objective at the points of flows on the Tone scale and least when there are ridges. Common reality between two viewpoints has its basis in agreement.

Because of its wealth of energy and energy forms, the thetan finds himself ordinarily outdone in energy emanation by the Mest universe. Thus he is the target of an almost continuous inflow which causes him to have a consistent and continual agreement with the MEST universe. He seldom disagrees with the MEST universe, and the best processing one can do is to break this agreement and turn it into an opposite flow, for only in this wise can a preclear’s ability to handle energy and be responsible for it be reestablished. If you ask a preclear to get the concept of agreeing, he will find himself experiencing an inflow upon himself.

Beingness is part of the universe, and in harmony with it. It should always be alert for anomalies and continually sort them out. The whole purpose is to evolve. Hubbard talks about agreement. But instead of agreement there should be mindfulness.

Hypnotism is performed by causing a subject to receive a continuous rhythmic or monotonous flow from the operator. After this flow has continued the subject will accept any reality which the operator cares to deliver unto him. It is in this case, evidently, with the MEST universe, and the solidity of the MEST universe is completely dependent upon one’s acceptance of it in terms of agreement.

Hypnotism suppresses the questioning ability of the person by enforcing agreement. It does that by imposing a continuous, rhythmic or monotonous flow. One’s environment can be hypnotic. One must learn to be alert and mindful.

Reality in essence is agreement or disagreement. When one speaks of reality, he speaks in terms of the MEST universe. The MEST universe, according to any computation one cares to make upon it, is found to consist of a high-level agreement amongst us. Those who disagree with the MEST universe are punished by the MEST universe.

Hubbard defines reality in terms of agreement with the physical universe. This is not so. Reality is the degree of objectivity in recognizing the laws of the universe. This includes both physical and spiritual laws.

Hubbard sees the physical and spiritual aspects of the universe at odds with each other. Maybe Hubbard saw himself as the spiritual force and the physical universe as his adversary, because he could not bend it to his will. That seems to be a part of Hubbard’s case.

From the standpoint of the MEST universe, the greatest reality would be had by matter itself and this seems to be its evident goal toward the thetan, to make him into solid energy. The reality on one’s own universe is poor because he is in a comatose state of agreement with the MEST universe. It is found on processing, however, that a preclear is in poor condition in direct ratio that he has accepted and agrees and complies with the MEST universe, and is in good and active condition in direct ratio to the degree he can break this flow of agreement and establish his own flows and thus create his own universe. One’s appreciation of the MEST universe is almost uniformly the energy which one himself places upon the MEST universe, in other words his illusions. When he loses his hopes and dreams (his illusions), it is because he has lost his ability to emanate energy back at the MEST universe and is dependent upon the energy the MEST universe thrusts at him.

The objective reality of the universe is that it has physical and spiritual aspects that parallel each other. The universe operates on physical and spiritual laws that are there to be discovered. A person discovers these laws for himself as he observes anomalies and resolves them.

A person is in a poor condition when he is hypnotized, whether by his environment or by a hypnotist. This condition comes about when a person’s ability to recognize and resolve anomalies has been suppressed. The Church of Scientology is doing just that at upper levels of auditing. This is the church that Hubbard put together.

At the upper levels of OT auditing, Hubbard is forcing a person to build “his own strong subjective reality to conquer the MEST universe”, instead of asking him to broaden his viewpoint and objectively view the universe. Unfortunately, Hubbard succumbed to his own case as a hypnotist.

A person has both physical and spiritual aspects. He is not separate from his body. There is no such separation at death either. It is the desire of the person to keep living after the body dies, which brings the illusion of life after death. The phenomenon of death needs to be properly understood.

ARC thus form a tone-scale. This tone-scale at any level finds a comparative state in affinity, in the reality and the communication abilities of the preclear. Thus, by testing the preclear and discovering his chronic emotion, his chronic state of agreement or disagreement, and his ability to communicate or not communicate, one establishes a level on this tone-scale.

Affinity-reality-communication does form a tone scale. This scale is very useful in assessing the mental condition of a person by observing his chronic emotion, his level of reality, and his ability to communicate ideas.

ARC form a triangle the corners of which are all at a single level. Thus if one wishes to create an increase of tone for the preclear—and one must do that to increase his self .determinism—he will find that he cannot raise the emotional state of the preclear without also addressing the reality and communication of the preclear. He cannot raise the reality of the preclear without addressing his affinity and communication problems. He cannot raise communication with the preclear without addressing his reality and affinity problems. The worst mistake an auditor can make is to undervalue this triangle in processing. A more or less complete tone-scale can be found in Science of Survival, and Book I of that volume is devoted entirely to an evaluation of the tone-scale and people.

Affinity, reality and communication are different aspects of consciousness. Improving the condition of a person amounts to improving the state of his consciousness. This improvement may be brought about by focusing on either affinity or reality or communication.

There are two positions on the tone-scale for the preclear when he is still a Homo sapiens. The composite known as Homo sapiens is considered to be dead at 0.0 and can rise on the tone-scale to slightly above 4.0. Thus Homo sapiens has this as his range. The thetan, however, who, in Homo sapiens, is below the level of awareness of self in terms of space and energy, has a wider range; and, as the thetan is basically the preclear and the beingness and identity of the preclear in actuality, this second range is even more important. This second range goes from -8.0 to 40.0 on the tone-scale. The optimum position for the thetan is considered to be 20.0 which is the point of optimum action. A Homo sapiens as such could not attain this level of the tone-scale because of his physical limitations.

A person has both physical and spiritual aspects. Hubbard refers to a person as a “homo sapiens” when that person’s attention is fixed on his body and his body acts as the major part of his identity. When the fixation on the body is not there, the person’s identity is determined more by his viewpoint. His identity then expands as his viewpoint expands.



A person is part of the universe. Just like the universe, the person also has both physical and spiritual aspects. The subject of affinity, reality and communication (ARC) is about the spiritual aspects of a person.

The physical and spiritual aspects are part of the same system. Therefore, there is only one universe and not two separate physical and spiritual universes. Similarly, there is only one person and not two separate thetan and body. Like many other religions, Hubbard’s Scientology makes the mistake of considering physical and spiritual to be two separate and independent systems.

ARC is a scale of consciousness associated with the person. A (affinity), R (reality) and C (communication) may be summarized as follows.

AFFINITY: The Tone scale is an affinity spectrum of consciousness that parallels the frequency spectrum of energy. As the inherent desire gets condensed, emotion deteriorates from serenity to boredom to apathy. These emotions follow a cycle of directed, fixed and dispersed attention. Attention is normally directed in normal course of life. It becomes fixed when it focuses on resolving an anomaly. It becomes dispersed when it fails to resolve that anomaly.

REALITY: Reality is the consciousness of what is there. As consciousness declines on the Tone scale, the reality of the person changes gradually from objectivity to subjectivity. His ability to recognize differences and similarities deteriorates. Reality is not defined by agreement or disagreement as Hubbard says. It is just that the more subjective a person is, the easier it is to get him to agree, and the easier it would be to hypnotize him.

COMMUNICATION: Communication is the interchange and assimilation of perceptions between mental matrices of two people. Each mental matrix has a certain tone scale level. As this level declines, so does the level of communication. It deteriorates from being a meaningful exchange to becoming a senseless exchange.

By recognizing the ARC level of a person, he can be assisted better in raising that level toward serenity.


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