The Statement of Theta-MEST Theory

Reference: Subject: Scientology Fundamentals

THETA-MEST THEORY is central to Scientology. Let’s look at its “definitions” from the TECHNICAL DICTIONARY and other works of L. Ron Hubbard, carefully.

THETA-MEST THEORY, 1. a theory generated by myself in the fall of 1950 as an effort to explain (just a theory) the phenomena of an analyzer working in one direction and a reactive mind working in quite another, the reactive mind being interesting, and the analyzer being interested.  

Here Theta refers to the analytical mind that thinks in a self-determined manner, and becomes interested. MEST refers to the reactive mind that thinks in a  mechanical fashion, and becomes interesting.

THETA-MEST THEORY, 2. the idea is that life is a no-substance thing, up against a physical universe which is a substance thing. Here is nothingness up against a somethingness interacting where the nothingness or the no-substance thing is actually giving orders to and handling the all substance thing, the physical universe. 

Here Theta represents life as a no-substance thing; and MEST represents the universe as a substance thing. Theta is up against MEST. Theta is interacting with MEST and  ordering and handling it. 

Hubbard assumes that the universe is made up of MEST only. Theta is “no-substance” only when contrasted against MEST as “substance”. 

THETA-MEST THEORY, 3. the idea that there was a universe and that there was thought—theta without wave-length, without mass, without time, without position in space: this was life. And that was impinged upon something else called the physical universe, which was a mechanical entity which did things in a peculiar way, and these two things together, theta-mest interacting, gave us life forms. (PXL, p. 140)

Here we have MEST as the dimension of universe, and Theta as the dimension of thought. Theta is devoid of the  MEST properties of mass, energy, space and time. Theta is regarded as life; MEST is regarded as a mechanical entity. Theta is completely different from MEST. It impinges on MEST and gives us life forms.

Hubbard assumes that the source of life comes from outside the universe. He does not see the universe as something alive. His viewpoint of the universe is narrow in the sense that he excludes the source of life from it.


The following data on Theta-MEST theory is quoted from the book SCIENTOLOGY 8-8008, by L. Ron Hubbard.

SCN 8-8008, 1. Scientology is essentially a study of statics and kinetics. If anything, it is more exact than what are called the physical sciences, for it is dealing with a theoretical static and a theoretical kinetic which are at the opposite ends of a spectrum of all motion. … In Scientology, the static is represented by the mathematical symbol theta; the kinetic is called MEST.

Hubbard postulates MEST to be all motion, and Theta to be static with respect to MEST. In other words, Theta and MEST are two different dimensions that do not overlap in their characteristics. This is indeed an original contribution of Hubbard.

SCN 8-8008, 2. The capabilities of the static are not limited. The static interacts with the kinetic which is considered to be the ultimate of motion. 

The capabilities of Theta are unlimited. Theta interacts with MEST.

Hubbard uses theta and static interchangeably; whereas static is actually the key property postulated for theta. This creates confusion.

SCN 8-8008, 3. The original of the Theta-MEST theory may be found in Science of Survival 1951. After the concept of the true static was reached, problems of processing began to solve much more rapidly, and the main proof of the Theta-MEST theory is its workability and the fact that it predicted an enormous amount of phenomena which, when looked for, were found to exist and which, when applied, resolved cases rapidly.

The realization that Theta and MEST are two very basic and different dimensions, resolved many confusions.

SCN 8-8008, 4. Theta can be the property or beingness of any individual and is, for our purposes, considered to be individualistic for each individual. MEST stands for matter, energy, space and time, and is a composite of the first letter of each. The word MEST appearing all by itself denotes the physical universe. MEST with a designation word after it designates another’s universe.

Hubbard associates Theta with the beingness of the individual. He assumes that the body is part of the MEST universe. 

Hubbard assumes the beingness to be actually separate from the body during out-of-body experiences and death. This, together with the memories from past lives, allows Hubbard to rationalize that the beingness of the individual is immortal.

SCN 8-8008, 5. It is now considered that the origin of MEST lies with theta itself, and that MEST, as we know the physical universe, is a product of theta.

Hubbard considers MEST to be the product of Theta.

This parallels the long standing religious belief, which says, “God created the World.” But opposing this belief is the scientific reasoning, which says, “Man created the idea of God.” Here we have a very basic anomaly.



DEFINITION: An anomaly is any violation of the integrity of reality, such as, discontinuity (missing data), inconsistency (contradictory data), or disharmony (arbitrary data). An anomaly flags the presence of a hidden impression on the mind in the form of an assumption. When the assumption is discovered, one becomes aware of the underlying impression. This awareness produces a realization that resolves the anomaly.

Hubbard assumes the universe to be physical (MEST) and the source of life (THETA) to be external to it like God in the western religions. This maintains the long standing anomaly between religious thinking and scientific reasoning.

This anomaly can be resolved easily by taking a broader view of the universe in which THETA and MEST are the dimensions of the universe. In this broader view, neither MEST is the product of Theta, nor Theta is the product of MEST. 

Thus, the individual beingness is a unique configuration of Theta and MEST dimensions. Past memories can be explained in terms of the programming contained in the DNA molecule much like that in a seed.



Resolution occurs when we adopt a broad view of an all-encompassing universe from which nothing is excluded. Theta (spiritual) and MEST (physical) together describe the characteristics of this universe.

With subject clearing, the basic statement of Theta-MEST theory appears as follows:

THETA and MEST are two dimensions of the universe, which, together, explain not only all the phases of matter and its motion, but also the whole spectrum of living organisms and life.


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  • vinaire  On August 27, 2022 at 11:47 AM

    My position these days is disagreement with LRH’s theta-MEST theory. I tend to go with the science, and IMO there just isn’t any evidence for mind-over-matter. Did you follow the Benjamin Libet experiment which shows brain activity precedes a person’s awareness of making a free-will decision? Also, recent advances in neuroscience support the idea that brain activity always precedes awareness.

    Body-mind is a single system. The two components—body and mind—cannot exist without each other. This is scientific.

    Take the electrons in an atom. They are moving by themselves. Nothing is pushing them. The two dimensions of Theta and MEST are integrated in it. Similarly, the body is not being activated from something outside. It is self-activated when alive. Upon death the self-activation reduces to lower levels of organs and, ultimately, to the atomic level. This is because the body configuration changes and it loses overall coordination.

    Fundamentally, there must be a “gear” moving by itself. As it engages with other “gears” the motion gets increasingly sophisticated. In Man this motion has reached a new level of sophistication. But that sophistication gets lost as the “gears” start to disengage.

    This doesn’t mean that MEST produces Theta. Nor does Theta produce MEST. It is a single system with dimensions of Theta and MEST. Their coordination produces different levels of motion. The highest level of motion is “rational thinking in Man.” Life begins at the level of virus and cell. It continues to get increasingly sophisticated thereafter.

    The arbitrary in Hubbard’s system is: “Theta produces MEST”. This is a bias we find in The Western religions, philosophy and thinking.

  • vinaire  On August 27, 2022 at 12:51 PM

    We are in agreement up till your resolution that theta, MEST are two dimensions. I see a requirement for MEST to exist first, in order to provide a platform for theta to develop on – like computer hardware being necessary to run an AI chatbot – pull the plug and the ärtificial “person” ceases to manifest!

    No platform can be entirely of MEST. It has to have both Theta and MEST.

    Let’s take a mathematical example. We define a flat surface by two dimensions x and y. The flat surface cannot exist without both x and y being there. Neither of x and y came first.

    Remember, the flat surface came first before we invented the dimensions of x and y dimensions to explain it. Similarly, the existence (and life) came first before we invented the dimensions of Theta and MEST to explain it.

    Saying a dimension produced the other dimension, or preceded it, is mathematically and philosophically biased.

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