SCN 8-8008: Thought, Emotion and Effort

This paper presents Section 15 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.


Thought, Emotion and Effort

Thought is the highest level attainable. It is of two varieties; one is clear thought established by will which is from 10.0 up on the tone-scale, to well above 40.0; the other is thought established by counter-efforts as in Homo sapiens and governed entirely on a stimulus-response basis. The first could be called self-determined thought; the second could be called reactive thought.

As physical and mental perceptions enter the mental matrix they break down into perceptual elements. As these elements assimilate into the mental matrix they form certain associations. These associations manifest as thoughts. When the matrix is completely assimilated the resulting thoughts are objective. But to the degree the matrix is not fully assimilated the resulting thoughts are subjective.

Self-determined thought expresses itself as will and consists of the making of postulates based on evaluations and conclusions. Will does not exist in time when it is at this level. Homo sapiens’ will, as Schopenhauer once remarked, is stubbornness taking the place of the intellect. Will-power in Homo sapiens is most ordinarily demon-circuit power. Free from the body and its ridges which themselves contain stimulus-response thought, the thetan can change his postulates by making new evaluations and conclusions, and can express his will directly. It is very difficult for a thetan inside the head and confronted by the stimulus-response ridges of the body, to do other than obey these stimulus-response flows in agreement with the MEST universe.

The output of the fully assimilated mental matrix may be viewed as self-determined. The will is clear and easy to implement. As the degree of assimilation of the matrix declines, the will is not that clear and it requires effort to implement. Since the matrix is less flexible, its will may manifest as stubbornness. These thoughts then direct the body functions. The feedback from the body may modify these thoughts somewhat. The thetan and body is a single system and not what Hubbard suggests.

Ideas are invariably and inevitably senior to force and action, if those ideas stem from self-determined thought. Ideas born out of stimulus-response thought bear at times an almost indistinguishable similarity to self-determined ideas, but are occasioned by associative logic. In Homo sapiens, it is quite common for the person to believe himself incapable of originality. This is because the MEST universe will brook no competitor. Operating on a highly self-determined plane, originality is a simple thing to attain. What is called will power, then, could have two manifestations: the first would be actual self-determined thought; the second would be a result of an enforced or inhibited thought. When Homo sapiens attempts to exercise his will-power, he normally brings into flow the ridges around the body and is nullified by them and is pressed into aberrated behaviour.

Objective thought provides most effective solution. An effective solution creates maximum cooperation, such that, force in the form of “overcoming disagreement” is not part of the picture. Subjective thought is less efficient and may generate enforcement or inhibition. Thought is made subjective by lack of assimilation. The unassimilated nodes add arbitrary logic that generates aberration.

Ideas, when in the form of self-determined thought, exist above the level of 40.0 on the tone-scale and extend down into the action band.

Ideas of the stimulus-response variety are occasioned by experience as held and contained in facsimiles and are actually dictated to Homo sapiens by circuits.

Subjectivity of thought increases with lack of assimilation of the mental matrix. The unassimilated nodes provide facsimiles with their unassimilated logic.

Postulate processing is that processing which addresses the postulates, evaluations and conclusions of the preclear at the level of self-determined thought, yet postulate processing has some value when addressed to stimulus-response ideas. Postulate processing is the primary and highest method of processing a thetan. With creative processing, it constitutes Scientology 8-8008.

A postulate is an assumption made to support the evaluation and conclusion. Postulate processing permits an individual to change his postulates.

Emotion, as known to Homo sapiens, extends from slightly above 4.0 down to 0.0, and depends upon the wave characteristic.

Effort is an even lower level manifestation than emotion.

Matter would be the lower effort band.

Emotions are part of subjective thought lower on the tone scale. Effort enters with lower emotions until it reduces to the characteristics of matter.



At the highest level on the tone scale we have thought that is objective. It is supported by a fully assimilated mental matrix. It leads to most efficient solutions. The will required to implement them is effortless.

A less assimilated mental matrix leads to subjective thought. Such thought contains dictates from unassimilated facsimiles instead of proper logic. Thus, solutions are less efficient and bring about enforcement and inhibition. Arbitrary postulates also enter the computations and require cleaning up.

Increased subjectivity starts to manifest emotions. Thus, emotions appear at the lower end of the tone scale. As emotions condense they require increasing effort to get anything done. At the very bottom of the tone scale thought, emotion and effort reduce to characteristics of matter.


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