Category Archives: Dianetics

OT 1948: Exhaustion of Engrams

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 13 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

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.


Exhaustion of Engrams

The technique of exhausting an engram is not complicated but it must be adhered to. An engram is an unconscious moment containing physical pain and conceived or actual antagonism to the organism. Therefore, that engram before it is discovered will exhibit antagonism toward the auditor trying to discover it. When it is first discovered, it may be found to be lacking in its essential data. There are many techniques by which this data can be developed. In a prenatal engram the analytical mind apparently must redevelop the situation. Many returns through the incident are therefore necessary.

The Dianetic method is: force your way to the engram by “clever guesswork” and then eliminate it by recounting it repeatedly. The logic is: once you eliminate the engram the cleaning up of aberrated circuits around the engram is easy and swift. In reality, this is not possible in most cases because it violates the gradient.

The proper gradient is achieved naturally through mindfulness auditing.

When an engram will not exhaust, the first thing the auditor should suspect is an earlier engram. It is actually possible for a later one to contain essential information which will not permit the information to rise. In the course of auditing, when an engram is restimulated by the auditor but will not rise above apathy and does not seem to contain all the necessary data, the auditor must look for an earlier engram, and it almost inevitably will be found to exist. This precursor is then developed as the basic engram. If it follows the same behavior pattern of not lifting or becoming complete, another previous to it must be discovered. If at last the auditor is entirely certain that there is no engram ahead of the one being run, some possible locking mechanism later on may be found and exhausted, at which time the basic may show itself. Continual application of energy to the basic will at length bring it into full view and continual recounting of it will gradually develop it, raise its tone and lift it into tone four.

There are no neat chains in the mind as assumed above. The data is networked like in a matrix.

The principle of recounting is very simple. The preclear is merely told to go back to the beginning and to tell it all over again. He does this many times. As he does it the engram should lift in tone on each recounting. It may lose some of its data and gain other. If the preclear is recounting in the same words time after time, it is certain that he is playing a memory record of what he has told you before. He must then be sent immediately back to the actual engram and the somatics of it restimulated. He will then be found to somewhat vary his story. He must be returned to the consciousness of somatics continually until these are fully developed, begin to lighten and are then gone. Tone four will appear shortly afterwards. If the preclear is bored with the incident and refuses to go on with it, there is either an earlier engram or there is other data in the engram which has not been located.

The method of “returning” is somewhat hypnotic and not optimum. Recounting amounts to associating data in a linear fashion.

The auditor will discover that occasionally an engram when lifted into a three, or even erased, without reaching laughter, will sag. This is a certain sign of an earlier basic on that chain. Any kind of sag from a tone four is impossible if tone four has truly been reached. 

Tone four will not be reached if there are earlier basics. The engram may vanish and be erased, but there will be no cheerfulness or laughter about it at the end if it is not the basic.

Full erasure takes place only when the whole engramic node is assimilated in the mental matrix. This happens only when the engramic node is approached on the natural gradient of the mind.

Once the basic has been reached and brought into tone four, it will disappear. The next engram on the chain will be located and rather easily brought into tone four. If one is accidentally skipped, the third in line will be found to hold or sag. The intermediate must then be located and brought into a tone four. In such a way the chain will gradually come up into a complete tone four. At this time the locks, the merely mentally painful incidents in the person’s life, will begin to release automatically. These will erase or lift without any attention from the auditor. While these are releasing, the auditor must concern himself with secondary engrams. These would be engrams on their own if they had not had forerunners. They therefore do not relieve after the removal of the basic but must be located as themselves. These in turn will start a chain of releasing locks which again need no attention. There may be entirely distinct engramic chains in the reactive mind which are not appended in any way to the original basic.

Most complications are generated by the dianetic procedure itself.

So long as a preclear retains any part of a reactive mind, he will be interested in himself (in the condition of his mind) and be introverted. Therefore, so long as he is interested in his own reactive mind, he is impeded in his dynamic pursuit of survival. A guarantee of a tone four is the patient’s interest in positive action along his dynamics, and his application of himself to the world around him. Introversion is not natural nor is it necessary to the creation of anything. It is a manifestation of the analytical mind trying to solve problems on improper data, and observing the organism being engaged in activities which are not conducive to survival along the dynamics. When a Clear has been reached, the basic personality and self-determinism of the individual will have asserted itself. No chronic somatics in the present will remain (excepting those which can be accounted for by actual disease, injury or malconstruction of the brain).

Introversion lessens as the mind assimilates aberrated nodes through free association. The mind knows how to handle itself best.

Though more germane to Child Dianetics, it is of help to the auditor to know that a child can be considered to have formed his general basic purpose in life somewhere around the age of two. This purpose is fairly reliable, as at that time his engrams have probably not gained much force over him since his responsibilities are slight. He will have tried to hold his main purpose throughout his life but it will undoubtedly have been warped both by his reactive mind’s experience content and by his environment. The time when the purpose is formed varies and may indeed never have been manifested, as in the case of amentia. As the preclear is normally interested in this purpose and its rehabilitation, he will often take a more intense interest in auditing if there is an attempt made to discover it. This purpose is quite valid and the preclear can be expected to rehabilitate his life along its dictates unless he is too oppressed by his environment. (It can be remarked that a Release or Clear will ordinarily order or change his environment.)

The basic purpose arises from the fully assimilated mental matrix. It manifests as the mind increasingly assimilates aberrated nodes through free association.

Vocational therapies have as their source the tenet of the rehabilitation of the general purpose of an individual or the establishment of a false purpose in order to allay the activity of his reactive mind. It has little bearing on Dianetics, but an auditor, for the term of auditing may engage his preclear along the purpose line of becoming a Clear. This is not necessary and is indeed often automatic since the basic personality beholds at last a chance to manifest itself. However, it will occasionally aid the auditor.

The individual always wants his mental matrix to become fully assimilated.

The auditor should be prepared to have to solve many individual problems since above the basics are almost as many problems as there are cases. For example, in the case of a preclear who has several very nasty prenatals it will be found that the formation of the body in the womb has overlaid or confused the time track so that a later prenatal must be partially lifted before an earlier prenatal can be exhausted. This is often true of a later period of life. In one case an entire series of prenatals was held down by a dental operation under nitrous oxide at the age of twenty-five. Until some portion of this was removed, the bulk of the prenatals were not available. In short, the circuits of the mind can become entangled to a point where even the motor control time track is confused.

The aberration can be so mixed up that they may have to be resolved together. This is why the free association approach of mindfulness is more workable than the discrete engram approach of Dianetics theory.

Dispersal of purpose by some engram along some dynamic or purpose line is a common situation and is indeed the basic concept. As a stream of electrons would behave if they were to encounter a solid object in their path, so does a drive or purpose disperse. These many varied and faint tracks after impact with the engram are symptomatic. Along dynamic two, the sexual drive, promiscuity inevitably and invariably indicates a sexual engram of great magnitude. Once that engram is removed promiscuity can be expected to cease.

Dispersal of purpose is a very common and a serious aberration.

Anxiety is established in the preclear’s mind by such dispersals and he dramatizes because of the dispersal. This is one of the manifestations of his malady. No pervert ever became a pervert without having been educated or abused by a pervert. And that abuse must have been very thorough. The contagion of engrams is an interesting manifestation which the auditor should and must observe. It can be said that insanity runs in families, not because this is a eugenic truth but because a standard patter during emergencies or stress creates certain types of engrams which in turn create types of insanities. Insanities are so definitely contagious that when a child is raised by aberrated parents, the child becomes aberrated. As would be delineated by Child Dianetics, the best way to guarantee a sane child is to provide it with cleared or released parents. This is of definite interest to the auditor since he will discover that in cases of severe prenatals and birth the engrams were also received by the mother exactly as they were received by the child. The child will thereafter be a restimulator to the mother and the mother a restimulator to the child for the severe incidents. The mother, having received the exact wording of the engram, also contains the engram. Restimulation by the child will occasion the use of the engramic language toward the child. This brings the infant and child and adolescent into the unhappy situation of having his birth engram or his prenatal engrams continually restimulated. This occasions dire results and very great unhappiness in the home and is one of the main sources of family difficulties.

A child, even if he despises them, will dramatize the actions of his parents when he himself is married and when he himself has children. In addition to this the other partner in the marriage also has his or her own engrams. Their engrams combine into doubled engrams in the children. The result of this is a contagion and a progression of aberration. Thus any society which does not have a high purpose finds itself declining and gaining greater numbers of insane. The contagion of aberration is at work progressively, and the children become progressively aberrated until at last the society itself is aberrated.

The dramatization of engrams easily leads to a contagion of aberration when a society is in disarray as to its purpose.

While the fate of society belongs definitely in Social and Political Dianetics, the auditor is interested in the fact that he can take the prenatal and birth content of the engrams of his preclear and run them to discover post-birth locks and secondary engrams. The mother will normally have used much the same data whenever the troubles of the child impinged upon her reactive mind; this of course accounts for the locks.

The auditor will also discover that where he has a married preclear who is aberrated, he should have two preclears, which is to say, the partner. It is useless to return a preclear to his or her aberrated spouse and expect domestic tranquility to result. While the release cannot and will not pick up his old engrams from the spouse in whom he has implanted them, he will, nevertheless, find his life made unbearable by the mere existence of a spouse that he himself may have aberrated.

Further, the children of these people will also need auditing, since they will be found (if the parent’s aberrations were of any magnitude) to be sickly or aberrated or deficient in some way. The auditor should therefore, when he undertakes a case, be prepared to audit the family of his preclear, should an investigation of that preclear make it seem necessary.

Aberrations are contagious and where a person has been aberrated, his environment will to some degree also have become aberrated. The preclear may, for one thing, be somewhat victimized and impeded by his reactive mind which is now existing in his associates.

The auditor should not permit such terms as “psychoneurotic,” “crazy,” or “mentally exhausted” to exist for long in the preclear’s mind. These are depressive and are actually aberrations in the society. It is true and provable that the preclear is on his way to being, not a person who is crazy or neurotic, but an individual who will have more stability and self-command and ability, possibly, than those around him. To be blunt: this is not the process of reviving corpses into a semblance of life. It is a process which, at its best usage, is taking the “normal” and “average” and giving them their birthright of happiness and creative attainment in the world of man.

In the face of this contagion of aberration a method of rapid large scale clearing is needed. This need may be met by mindfulness auditing approach.



Most difficulties encountered in the Dianetic procedure are generated by the procedure itself. The mindfulness auditing approach may overcome those difficulties, and provide a method by which engramic nodes can be cleared up rapidly on a large scale.


OT 1948: Diagnosis

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 12 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

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.



It is a useful and positive principle that whatever confronts or contests the analytical mind of the preclear will also confront and contest the analytical mind of the auditor. When the auditor is acting as the analytical mind of the preclear, whatever emotion or antagonism is directed towards him is the emotion or antagonism which is directed by the reactive mind toward the preclear’s own analytical mind. If a preclear cannot hear what people are saying in his engrams, he has another engram about “can’t hear.” If he cannot feel anything in his engram, it is because he has an engram about “can’t feel.” If he cannot see, he has an engram about not being able to see, and so forth. If he cannot return, he has an engram about going back, or returning to childhood, or some such thing. If he is doubtful and skeptical about what is happening or what has happened to him, it is because he has an engram about being doubtful and skeptical. If he is antagonistic, his reactive mind contains a great deal of antagonism. If he is self-conscious or embarrassed, it is because his reactive mind contains self-consciousness or embarrassment. If he insists on maintaining his own control, refusing to do what the auditor tells him to do (although he is returned), it is because he has an engram about self-control, and so forth and so on. This is identity thought, and is used in diagnosis.

In the “BODY-MIND-I” model, the “I” is the objective viewpoint, which sees things as they are. The mind puts the filters there. When the auditor cannot understand something about the auditee, then it is the same thing that the auditee cannot understand about himself. That difficulty is being generated by the aberrated nodes of the mental matrix.

The return is the best method of learning the problems of the preclear. Trying to work the preclear into remembrance, hearing, seeing, feeling, going back and forward, going to sleep, awakening, and taking due notice of what he says about the entire process will form a rather complete diagnosis on one who is not insane. Questioning the preclear as to what is wrong with him while returned will elicit replies straight out of his principal engrams. Listening to an endless justification of his actions is both a delay and a waste of time but listening to what he has to say about what he thinks has happened to him or what he is afraid of is of definite value.

Dianetics employs the method of “return”, which is to go back and re-experience an incident. But there is not always a clear cut incident. Therefore, mindfulness employs the method of concentrating on the difficulty while letting the mind freely associate.

Free association is letting the mind associate whatever is there without any interference. No conscious effort is made for the auditee to remember anything. The auditee simply thinks of the difficulty and focuses on it for as long as necessary. The focus can go pretty deep. There is no questioning of the auditee other than that the auditee may briefly summarize the outcome of the free association. The auditee is trained simply to observe and not to justify any outcome.

The insane form and pose a slightly different problem but essentially the same.

It is a clinically established observation that the reactive mind is relatively shallow. Below it lies the basic personality of the individual no matter how “insane” he may be. Therefore, by one means or another, a rational being may be reached within a person, a being which is not aberrated. It is this fact of non-aberration which makes the basic personality a difficult aid in diagnosis. Here however it can be established what the person really wants, what he hopes, what he actually feels. It has been observed that no matter what his raving state, providing his brain structure is normal and complete, the basic personality is entirely sound and sane and will cooperate. After auditing the person will become this strong, competent and able personality.

An insane person is simply too introverted. His attention needs to be extroverted before he can be audited. But this is the first step with any introverted person.

The reactive mind, when unable to exert itself to its aberrated full in the environment of the person, will break the person, or cause him to lose tone. Therefore it is of definite interest to discover what immediately preceded the break of the preclear or what is currently causing him unhappiness. Something is dispersing his dynamics. The probability is that he has a chronic restimulator in his vicinity. Wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, superiors, etc., can be the source of such breaking since they turn the purpose of the reactive mind, which pretends to desire above all else the best interest of the person, back upon the person himself. Thus these sources cause the individual to lower back into the tone of the reactive mind, apathy, or a low tone two.

Diagnosis is isolating the difficulty to focus on. The difficulty may be understood broadly at first whatever is currently causing him unhappiness. As auditing proceeds, this difficulty may be narrowed down to something more specific. When there is a mental breakdown one may isolate the difficulty that preceded the break. There may be persons associated with the difficulty. The free association then includes their personalities.

The problem of the fixed person and the problem of the sympathy engram are both visible in the aberrated individual. The identity thought of the reactive mind has taken some part of the personality of some individual in the current environment and referred it to some part of the personality of an individual in the engramic past. The discovery of this identity is one of the principal problems in auditing. The sympathy engram is of a very specific nature, being the effort of the parent or guardian to be kind to a child who is severely hurt. If that parent or guardian has shown the child antagonism prior to the time of the injury, the adult (preclear) is prone to reactivate the injury in the presence of the identity personality with whom he is now associated. This causes many somatic ills to present themselves in the present. Only the exact words of a sympathy engram will soothe the aberrated personality.

A key problem occurs when a person gets attached to somebody because that person is similar to a personality in his engramic data. Discovering this brings great relief. Another key problem occurs when the engramic data is making a person ill in an effort to gain sympathy from somebody similar to an engramic personality.

There are not many personality types. A human being learns through mimicry. If his own self is found to be too painful he can become another self and very often does. A tone four can become another person at will without being aberrated about it, thus enjoying books and plays by “being” the person portrayed. But an aberrated individual can become part of the engramic cast of his reactive mind and so solve all of his problems in such an aberrated fashion. Aberrated persons are not themselves since they do not possess their own determinism.

As has been stated, those emotions, doubts, worries and problems which confront the auditor when attempting to place the preclear in reverie or to work him in that reverie will lead the auditor into the basic content of the reactive mind.

There are certain definite manifestations which can be suspected and certain routines which follow every case. Every human being has been carried in the womb and every human being has been born. The discovery of the basic engram on each chain is extremely important. Finding the basic engram is like taking the enemy in the flank. There is nothing before it, therefore the end most remote from the adult life of the individual is the end most exposed for the attack of the auditor.

The above is good to know. The mind engages its knowledge in free association as it sees fit. The mind is not consciously directed in any way.

In the basic engram the preclear can see, feel, hear, and freely emote. When he is returned to later incidents, it may be found that he cannot do these things no matter how hard the auditor works to enable him to do so. By pursuing the engramic chain up its chronological sequence, this ability will be restored. Therefore it is necessary first and foremost to locate the basic engram. This may, in some few cases, lie later than birth. In the majority of the cases it will be found to lie at or before birth. No discussion is here entered about the ability of the human mind to remember at such remote periods. It can be stated however that when engramic data does exist, the time track is opened by pain and antagonism at these extreme points and can be contacted and exhausted. It is with the greatest difficulty that the auditor will find the basic engram. It is ordinarily quite painful, and since the scanning mechanism has as its purpose (or one of its purposes) the avoidance of pain, it will not easily reach them. Like the scanning mechanism on a cathode ray tube, the scanners of even a very reduced potential analytical mind sweep over, skipping and not touching the data on the engramic chain. By various means the auditor must then require the scanners to contact that data and force the data back onto the time track where it can be properly exhausted.

In Dianetics procedure one’s primary effort is to find the basic engram by tracing the somatics down the time track, and force its contents into awareness. This is a simplistic model and dangerous. It does not work always, and it does create problems.

In Mindfulness procedure, the mind finds its own best way to assimilate the aberrated nodes back into the mental matrix. The mind is neither forced nor directed in any way. The concentrated focus on the difficulty maintains the general pressure on the mind to keep freely associating to resolve the difficulty. This approach is very safe.

Light prenatals are the best possible approach to a case. When the only prenatal is an extremely heavy one or an attempted abortion (which, by the way, are very common), the auditor must use a great deal of guile. It can be said that the basic engram and the beginning of the actual engram chains is very early, before, near, or during birth, is painful, and will not be easily contacted. In that few preclears have more than a few hundred serious engrams, the task is light when once begun but requires a great deal of imagination and persuasion.

The early Dianetics procedure made guesses and then used lot of cleverness to contact the actual engramic data. This is trial and error that can backfire. No such guile, imagination or cleverness is required in the mindfulness approach. It renders the use of E-meter unnecessary.

A prenatal must always be suspected unless birth, when lifted, rises easily into a tone four. If none of the engrams will rise into a tone four, the auditor would suppose that he has not discovered the basic. There are three kinds of engrams: the precursor, the engram and the follower. By engram here is meant that experience which the auditor has found and is working upon. If it does not seem to be lifting after a few recountings, a precursor (earlier engram) must be suspected and returned to. In this way an earlier basic may be discovered. Blows in the womb, attempted abortions, and birth are the usual basics. Easily the most important are the prenatals.

All this information should just be kept as part of background knowledge. It is not used consciously in mindfulness auditing. This information may or may not be applicable. The missing data could simply be not having connected all the dots. It could be more than just a single basic incident at the bottom of it.

When a child is abnormally afraid of the dark, he probably has a severe engramic experience in prenatal. This prenatal experience will include all the sound data and sensory data of the incident. It is idiotic and identical. The preclear will have somatics. These on the first few recountings will be ordinarily faint and then become more severe as more data is located. The data will finally be in a more or less complete state and the engram will begin to lift, rising up through the various tones. All prenatals are apathy experiences and are therefore serious. Minor taps and discomforts in the womb are of no consequence. A true engram will consist of such a thing as a knitting needle being rammed through the foetus, half of the foetus’ head being badly injured, blows of various kinds bringing about foetal unconsciousness and so forth. Return eventually will find an opening into any period when there has been pain.

Disbeliefs and antagonisms from the preclear on the subject of such a thing as an attempted abortion should be overlooked by the auditor or taken into account as the sign of an existing engram. A case is recalled wherein a girl insisted that if an abortion had ever been attempted on her it should have been successful. Through several sessions, while an attempt was made to lift birth, she continued this assertion until the auditor realized that this was probably a remark made by the abortionist (or the mother) when his efforts failed. As soon as this was suggested to the girl she was able to contact the actual incident. A chronic apathy case under treatment for some years in an institution, she suddenly responded to auditing, brought the abortion to tone four, erased birth to tone four and recovered mentally and physically into a social asset well above normal.

The auditor should continue to suspect prenatals as long as he cannot get later engrams easily into tone four. Once an engramic chain has been lifted at its end nearest to conception, the preclear should begin to release relatively automatically, aided but little by the auditor. The erasure should be in terms of laughter at its optimum. This laughter is the reversing of charges residual in the locks which depended for their fear content or antagonistic content upon the basic engrams.

If a prenatal painful experience is there it will come up automatically in the mindfulness approach.

Abortion attempts are easy to recognize when an auditor has had some experience. The parent who attempted the abortion will, after the child’s birth, likely be a source of anxiety to the individual who seems to require a great deal of affection and attraction from that parent. The individual will be found to be most fond of the parent (or other) who did not aid, or who actually tried to prevent the abortion attempt. At this time abortion attempts are extremely common. When an abortion attempt has been lifted, the engramic chain should easily be brought to the time track and exhausted.

If an abortion attempt painful experience is there it will come up automatically in the mindfulness approach.

Auditing is essentially very simple but it demands precise understanding of the principles involved and imagination and sympathy on the part of the auditor. He must learn to compute engramically—or learn to think with his analytical mind, only for the purposes of auditing others, engramically. His biggest problem is the discovery of the basic of basics. It may elude him for a considerable period of time.

The primary principle that is necessary is to keep the viewpoint objective and to relegate any assumption to the background. As the process of free association may take some time to conclude, a bit of patience is required.

There is, however, preparatory work to do in a case other than the discovery of the basic. Occasionally an entire time track must be rehabilitated in which “do not remember” and “can’t remember” have obscured the track. Later locks can be found and exhausted in the same manner that engrams are exhausted, and rapid scanning methods may be developed in the future for these. The hysteria or fear of the individual can be momentarily allayed one way or the other and the problem of reaching the basic can be entered upon. There are as many types of case as there are cases, but these are the primary fundamentals.

If the auditee is concerned about nothing coming up in a session then he may focus on the difficulty with remembering. The focus on difficulty may thus shift in the mindfulness approach as the situation arises.

An auditor must think his way through every case, taking as his data the constantly reiterated statements of the preclear during auditing, and accumulating experience as to how incidents can be thrust off the time track, burying them from sight by the analytical mind, thus forming a reactive mind to the detriment of the organism.

The Dianetics procedure depends on the ability of the auditor to “compute” the case. That is a great weakness of this procedure. In mindfulness procedure, no such computation is required. Even when one can guess the content of engramic node, such knowledge is simply kept in the background.  



Diagnosis means isolating the difficulty that a person (auditee) is going to focus on in his auditing session. The difficulty may be understood broadly at first as whatever the auditee is unhappy about. As auditing proceeds, this difficulty may be narrowed down to something more specific.

Dianetics assumes that all aberrations arise, ultimately, from a physically painful experience. In its opinion, locating and running that painful incident is the fastest way of curing that person. Therefore, Dianetics employs the method of “return”, or light regression, to make the auditee re-experience an incident that is causing his difficulty. There is, however, not always a clear cut incident to return to.

Mindfulness auditing, on the other hand, employs the method where the auditee focuses on the difficulty while letting the mind freely associate whatever data it finds. The auditee is not made to recall or return to some incident. Instead he simply concentrates on the details of his difficulty. Mind shall automatically associate freely the data available to it.  If there is an incident to come up, it will do so. The auditee is trained to simply observe and not to justify what comes up. This way his focus can go pretty deep.

The auditee will discover details about his difficulty but he is not required to provide them to the counselor (auditor). He may discuss whatever details he wants to as part of further diagnosis. If the auditee is concerned about nothing coming up in a session then he may focus on the difficulty with remembering. The difficulty to be focused on may thus shift in the mindfulness approach as the situation arises.

When there is a mental breakdown one may look at the difficulty that preceded the break. When the auditee is too introverted his attention needs to be extroverted by taking walks, or by changing his environment, before he can avail of an auditing session.


OT 1948: Auditing

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 11 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

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.



The auditing technique consists of assisting the preclear’s analytical mind or some part of it with the auditor’s analytical mind. The auditor then functions during each successive period of auditing, and only during the periods themselves, as an extra analytical mind of the preclear.

The mindfulness auditing technique consists of concentrating on a clearly recognized aberration while letting the mind unwind through free association.

The job of the auditor is to help the auditee find the aberration that is real and ready to be concentrated on. He then encourages the auditee to apply the auditing technique as above. He simply listens to and acknowledges the auditee and does not interfere otherwise. In mindfulness meditation, the auditee is the auditor.

The reactive mind was received during the dispersal or inactivity of the analytical mind. The reactive mind is removed by “returning” the preclear to the engram, and laying its contents before the scrutiny of the analytical mind.

The “engram” is the clearly recognized aberration. The mind is allowed to freely associate all experiences related to that aberration.

This technique may be considered the lowest common denominator of a number of techniques. Anything which will serve this purpose and permit auditing to be accomplished efficiently is valid technique.

The optimum is purely personal affinity brought about by understanding and communication with the preclear on agreeable subjects. Another and almost useless method is narcosynthesis together with the various drugs and hypnotics used to produce sleep. Methods can be found such as faith healing, books on medical hypnosis, the techniques of Indian medicine men and so forth. It is pointless to delineate these methods here. They are currently available under the name of hypnotism but a caution should be enjoined that hypnosis as itself is not at all acceptable to Dianetics and indeed has extremely limited use. Briefly, however, it must be remarked that if hypnotism is studied to advance these techniques, all positive suggestion and post-hypnotic suggestion must be avoided as these suggestions depend for their effectiveness upon the already existing content of the reactive mind and will only form additional locks.

Drugs, hypnosis, faith healing, suggestions, etc., are not part of this procedure. The auditor never suggests anything to the auditee (preclear). He helps the auditee isolate the aberration through objective observation and discussion.

Any and all so-called hypnotic drugs have definite drawbacks since they, like so many other things, may be termed “shot-gun” methods. These paralyze not only the analytical mind but the remainder of the organism so that it is nearly impossible to obtain the proper somatic reaction in the preclear. They are not anesthetics but anesthesias. By using them the auditor instantly denies himself the main material which will lead him to the engram, which is to say, restimulated physical pain. Such restimulated pain is never of very great magnitude and is obliterated by the use of anesthesias.

Drugs may interfere with the free association ability of the mind. Free association is key to the success of this auditing procedure. Free association may bring up hard to face realities and physical pain, but it is never of great magnitude.

At no time should the auditor permit the preclear to be under the delusion that he is being hypnotized. This is mentioned because hypnotism is a current fad and the principles of Dianetics have nothing whatever to do with hypnotism. Both are based upon simple natural laws but have between them an enormous gulf. One is the tool of the charlatan and the other is the science of the human mind.

Regression in its simplest form, hereafter called return, is employed in dianetic auditing. It would be an extraordinary case which required revivification. Return is the method of retaining the body and the awareness of the subject in present time while he is told to go back to a certain incident. Dates are not mentioned. His size is not mentioned. Various means are used to restimulate his memory. Any of the perceptics may be employed to return him to some period of his past. He is told simply to “go back to the time when_________.” He is asked to recount what he can of the incident. He is told that he is “right there” and that he can “recall this.” Little else is said by the auditor save those hints necessary to return the preclear to the proper time.

Hypnotism and regression are a substitute for concentration of the mind. They are externally controlled procedures, whereas, concentration is exercised by the person himself. Dianetic technique of “return” also falls under the category of external control, and it is not allowed in the mindfulness auditing procedure.

The preclear is not allowed at any moment to revivify in that period since the data is drained as a surcharge from his time track to present time. He is told that he can remember this in present time since that will occasion the somatics to return to present time. Most of the data is located by observing some somatic pain in the individual or some somatic aberration and seeking to discover wherein it was received.

In free association the mental matrix associates the data elements in the present. Any past memory is reconstructed in the present. Free association is releasing the tension in the mind. Any effort to forcibly associate data only generates more tension in the mind.

The somatics are employed primarily because the motor controls possess a less disturbed time track than the sensory strip. Anything which tends to lighten these somatics is then antipathetic to auditing. It must be remembered that there is no aberration without an accompanying somatic. The somatics alone, being physical ills of one sort or another, hold the aberrated content of the reactive mind in place. The motor controls can be returned to a period although the conscious or analytical mind believes itself to be entirely in present time. By talking to the muscles or motor controls or various bodily aches and pains, the auditor can shift them at will up and down their time track. This time track is not connected to the analytical mind and speech, but is apparently a parallel time track with greater reliability than the sensory track. The precision of data contained in the motor control time track is enormous. Muscles can be made to tense or relax. Coughs, aches, and pains can be made to come and go simply by uttering the right words for the engrams, or the wrong words.

One may concentrate on the somatic aspect of the aberration, such as, “pain in the _______”. Somatic may be defined as part of a larger aberration which is a sort of confusion. Dianetics believes in controlling the attention and the autonomic responses of the auditee but that is not necessary to accomplish the purpose of auditing.

It is the primary task of the auditor to cause the time tracks of the motor strip and the sensory strip to come into parallel. That the time track exists in the strips has not been proven but they can so be considered for the purposes of this explanation. That they exist is extremely apparent. The motor strip time track can be asked questions down to the smallest moment of time, and the area of an engram can be so located and its character determined.

There is no simple time track. The primary task of the auditor is to help the auditee find the right aberration to concentrate on. The auditor does not do the auditing for the auditee. If the auditee runs into difficulty, the auditor’s task is to discuss the aberration objectively until the auditee understands what to concentrate on.

As an analogy, a dream may be considered as the reception by the remaining analytical mind of a distortedly reflected and indirectly received picture of the engrams. This applies only when the dream is specifically directed at the reactive mind. It will be found that a preclear with a large and active reactive mind does not dream to any great extent in normal sleep but that a release may dream pleasantly and consistently. A dream in its normal function is that powerful and original mechanism called the imagination compositing or creating new pictures.

The use of the dream is not highly technical and has little value in Dianetics. The auditor gleans data from the preclear by his own remarks about any subject, or by the preclear’s illogicalness on a subject. The auditor tells the preclear to dream about this data. When the preclear has had the dream he is directed to go back to the engram causing the dream. Quite often he will do so. If he does not, or if he becomes hostile, it is certain that an engram exists on the subject.

A Dianetic auditor observes what the auditee says and how he acts, to guess at the content of his engramic node. He then asks the auditee to concentrate on it. But this can get very complicated.

The Mindfulness auditor simply finds the area about the auditee that naturally draws auditee’s attention. The auditor then discusses it with the auditee to isolate what the auditee wants most to concentrate on. Only that aberration can be audited that is real to the auditee. The auditee may have a glaring aberration, but if it not real to him, it cannot be audited.

The lie detector, the encephalograph and many other means are of limited usefulness in determining both the character and the extent of the engrams since into these as into the dreams can be fed the restimulators of the preclear. A codified restimulator list can be created which will be found to be common to most preclears. It should include all types of illnesses, accidents, the common trite phrases of the society, and names of various persons who commonly surround a child during his childhood. Such a codified restimulator list would be interesting for experiment and every auditor can compose his own. These are best composed after auditing the individual preclear and after inquiry into his life to determine the various irrationalities of thought. In that engrams are identity thought, the remarks of the preclear about his engrams will be found to be included in the content of those engrams. When the preclear is asked to imagine a bad situation at certain ages and under hypnotic conditions, he will very often deliver up a complete engram. The auditor must realize that every remark that a preclear makes while he is going over his reactive mind is probably some part of the content of that reactive mind. That mind is literal. The words the preclear uses when referring to it must be literally evaluated.

Dianetics uses a lie-detector type instrument called “E-meter” as an aid in auditing. The auditor uses it to note the subtle reactions of the auditee, and to guide the auditee’s attention accordingly. The E-meter has been misused greatly by interpreting its reaction in such a way that it goes against what the auditee thinks and feels. Such a dependence on a mechanical instrument can greatly retard the progress in auditing and can even be harmful.



Hubbard was an accomplished hypnotist. It is obvious from reading his ORIGINAL THESIS (1948) that the Dianetics procedure is derived from his experience with the mind as a hypnotist. I have no doubt that Hubbard’s intention was to undo hypnotic effects using his knowledge of hypnotism. That is how the Dianetic procedure came about. But in spite of all his precautions the Dianetic procedure is not totally clean of hypnotic elements. The primary hypnotic element in Dianetic procedure is ‘returning’ that digs into the mind.

We know through mindfulness that the mind shall immediately present the data asked for, if it is available. Some more data may come up with contemplation based on free association. But if certain data asked for is not coming up then there is a reason for it. That reason has to do with mind’s self-protective mechanism. Some other data needs to be unwound first before this data could be made available.

Digging into the mind forcefully can upset the matrix of the mind, rearranging it in unpredictable ways that could be damaging to the mind. Dianetics procedure does require forceful probing. In defense, It is said that the E-meter tells the auditor if the data is available or not and this makes the Dianetic procedure safe. But there are innumerable accounts of misinterpretation of e-meter. The reaction of e-meter is not always what it is interpreted to mean.


OT 1948: The Auditor’s Code

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 10 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

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.


The Auditor’s Code

Not because it is a pleasant thing to do or because it is a noble idea, the auditor must always treat a preclear in a certain definite way which can be outlined as the auditor’s code. Failure to follow this code will cause trouble to the auditor, will considerably lengthen and disturb his work and may endanger the preclear. The auditor in the first place, at the optimum, should be himself cleared; otherwise he will find that many of his own engrams are restimulated as he listens to the engrams of his preclears. This restimulation may cause his own engrams to become chronic, victimizing him with various allergies and delusions and causing him to be, at best, extremely uncomfortable. An auditor can audit while he himself is being cleared as this is a peculiar and special method of locating his own engrams, since they become restimulated. Becoming painful to him, they can be found and speedily removed. Even if he is not himself cleared, the auditor must act like a Clear towards the preclear. The auditor’s code is the natural activity of a Clear.

In mindfulness meditation, a person is both the auditee and the auditor. The auditor’s code is same as the discipline of mindfulness. An auditor must apply this code to oneself and others for the benefit of all.

The auditor must act toward the preclear exactly in the way that the preclear as an organism would desire that his own conscious analytical mind would react to and consider the organism. An affinity must therefore be maintained at all costs.

The analytical mind is made up of the fully assimilated mental matrix. Its effort is to assimilate the engramic and aberrated nodes. This is accomplished by recognizing the aberration and following it to fully recognize its source. The auditor supports this effort fully. He does not deviate from this effort by adding other considerations.

The auditor must never permit himself to lose his temper, become aggravated, to scold or badger or antagonize the preclear in any way. To do so would not merely disturb the comfort of the preclear but might additionally derange him and might even prohibit further beneficial therapy by the auditor.

The code is nearly “Christlike.”

The auditor approaches the situation objectively and does not become rattled. He maintains his own mental matrix in an assimilated state. He becomes aware when his own aberrated nodes are activated, and uses the discipline of mindfulness to defuse them.

The auditor must be confident in that he must continually reassure the preclear when restimulated engrams cause despondency on the preclear’s part. A cheerful optimistic presence encourages the preclear through his most painful experiences.

The auditor is confident in the application of mindfulness and is continually reassuring others of its success in a cheerful and optimistic manner. He keeps the attention extroverted and objective.

The auditor must be courageous, never permitting himself to be intimidated by either the aggression or hostility of the preclear.

The auditor recognizes any aggression or hostility to be dramatizations and does not react to them. He courageously applies mindfulness to defuse that behavior.

The auditor must be kind, never indulging in hostilities or personal prejudices. The auditor must be trustworthy, never betraying or capriciously denying a preclear and above all never breaking his word to the preclear. An auditor must be clean, for personal odors or bad breath may be restimulators to the preclear or may disturb him. The auditor must take care not to offend the concepts or sensibilities of the preclear.

The auditor is kind and aware of the needs that are there. He can be trusted for his skills and actions to bring assimilation to the mental matrix. He keeps good hygiene. His approach is just right to help overcome a difficulty.

The auditor must be persistent, never permitting the case of the preclear to either resist him or to remain unsolved until it is in a proper tone four, since the restimulation of engrams is a malady unto itself unless they are being properly exhausted.

The auditor proceeds systematically with the help of the assimilated mental matrix to resolve the aberrated nodes as aberrations are presented. He never gives up.

The auditor must be patient, never hurrying or harassing the preclear beyond the needs of stirring an engram into view. He must be willing to work at any and all times necessary and for the length of time necessary to exhaust the engrams in process of elimination.

The auditor approaches the aberrated node on a gradient by letting the mind unwind as it may. He handles the aberrated node as soon as it becomes available. He is patient and willing to work whenever and as long as needed.

In addition to these things it may be remarked that a definite affinity is established between the auditor and preclear during the auditing. In the case of opposite sexes this affinity may amount to an infatuation. The auditor must remain aware of this and know that he can and should redirect the infatuation to some person or activity other than himself when auditing is at an end. Not to do so is to produce an eventual situation wherein the preclear may have to be rebuffed with consequent trouble for the auditor.

Over time there is a deep and mutual understanding established between the auditor and the auditee. The auditor respects this trust and understanding and never takes advantage of it for personal gains.



The auditor has the responsibility of keeping his own mental matrix well assimilated and not disturbed by his own aberrated nodes, while helping others assimilate their aberrated and engramic nodes.


OT 1948: Dramatization

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 9 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

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.



Dramatization is the duplication of an engramic content, entire or in part, by an aberree in his present time environment. Aberrated conduct is entirely dramatization. Aberrated conduct will occur only when and if an engram exists in the reactive mind of the aberree. That conduct will be a duplication of such an engram. The degree of dramatization is in direct ratio to the degree of restimulation of the engrams causing it. A mild dramatization would be a similarity to the engram. A severe dramatization would be an identity with the engram.

The general tone of an aberree, when high—when his person is unwearied and he is well and not directly menaced in his environment—does not permit as great an influence by the reactive mind, since the tone level of the entire individual possesses too great a differential from the tone of the engram. As the general tone of the individual approaches the tone level of the engram under restimulation, dramatization becomes more severe.

The analytical mind is present to the degree that the general tone of the aberree is high. As this general tone lowers through ill health, reverses, or constant restimulation of the reactive mind, the analytical mind is proportionately less aware. Dramatization is demonstrated by the aberree in inverse ratio to the potential of the analytical mind. A geometrical progression is entered as general tone lowers to cause the analytical mind to lose its entire awareness potential.

Once every engram contains, as the common denominator of all engrams, the unconsciousness of the organ which is the analytical mind, dramatizations gain rapidly as this interaction progresses.

In the presence of a relatively high analytical mind awareness-potential dramatization takes the form of similarity. The data of the engram is present but is interspersed with or modified by justified thought. The physical pain which is always present as part of the dramatization is equally mild, a duplication of the pain which was present during the engram. The awareness potential of the analytical mind reduces in the restimulation of the engram which again reduces the general tone.

The aberree is subject to almost continuous dramatization of one engram or another as the restimulators appear in his vicinity. (Although the aberration may be so mild as to include only some chronically affected organ.) Complete dramatization is complete identity. It is the engram in full force in present time with the aberree taking one or more parts of the dramatis personae present in the engram. He may dramatize all the actors or merely one of them. His dramatization is identity, is unreasoned and always entirely reactive. When the analytical mind reaches the low point of awareness potential it held during the engramic incident, that point is also forced upon the aberree as a part of the dramatization. The aberree may also dramatize himself as he was at the moment of the engram’s receipt.

The words, physical actions, expressions, and emotions of an aberree undergoing an identity dramatization are those of the single or various dramatis personae present in the engram.

An engram which can be dramatized may at any time in an aberree’s future be dramatized as an identity dramatization, when and if his general tone is low and his environment becomes infiltrated by restimulators.

An aberree, because of high general tone and other factors, may not suffer the restimulation of an engram for a number of years after its receipt. A large number of engrams may be present and undramatized in any aberree, if he has never been presented with their particular restimulators in an optimum moment for restimulation. The common denominator of all insanity is the absence of all or almost all awareness potential in the analytical mind. Insanity can be acute or chronic. Any identity dramatization is insanity, by which is meant the entire absence of rationality.

The aberree commonly and chronically dramatizes locks. The engramic content may compel or repress the aberree whenever restimulated. An irrational person is irrational to the degree that he dramatizes or succumbs to engramic content in his reactive mind. The computations which can be made on the basis of dramatization are infinite. The reactive mind thinks in identities. Dramatizations are severe as they approach identity with the engrams which force them into being in the conduct of the aberree. The Dianeticist can profit in many ways by these principles of dramatization. By examination of the rage or apathy or hysteria patterns of the preclear, the Dianeticist will find himself in possession of the exact character of the engrams for which he is searching.

In the case of the manic, the fanatic, or the zealot an engram has entirely blocked at least one of the purpose lines deriving from a dynamic. The engram may be called an “assist engram.” Its own surcharge (not the dynamic force) leads the individual to believe that he has a high purpose which will permit him to escape pain. This “purpose” is a false purpose not ordinarily sympathetic with the organism, having a hectic quality derived from the pain which is part of it, even though that pain is not wittingly experienced. This “assist engram” is using the native ability of the organism to accomplish its false “purpose” and brings about a furious and destructive effort on the part of the individual who, without this “assist engram” could have better accomplished the same goal. The worst feature of the “assist engram” is that the effort it commands is engramic dramatization of a particular sort, and if the engram itself is restimulated the individual becomes subject to the physical pain and fear which the entire experience contained. Therefore, the false purpose itself is subject to sporadic “sag.” This sag becomes longer and longer in duration between periods of false thrust. It is easy to confuse, in casual observation, an “assist engram” and an actual, valid drive, unless one also observes the interspersed periods of “sag.” The “assist engram” may or may not occasionally accomplish something, but it does accomplish a confusion in the society that the dynamics of the individual are derived from his bad experiences. This is a thing which is emphatically untrue.

Inherently the individual has great will power. This however can be aberrated. Will power or its absence occasions the attitude of the aberree toward his reactive mind.

The prevention of the dramatization of an engram or a lock further reduces dynamic thrust of the aberree. Chronic prevention lowers his general tone toward the break point. Unhampered dramatization, as it contains restimulation of a physical pain and the reduced potential of the analytical mind, produces other harmful effects.

Necessity can and does render inactive the entire reactive mind. Dramatization occurs most often in the absence of necessity or when the reactive mind has obscured the presence of necessity.

Dramatization is residual in the motor controls including speech and can be allayed by the physical exhaustion of the individual. The organism during dramatization tends to revivify toward the moment of the engram’s occurrence—the engram containing, as one of its identity parts, the complete physical condition of the organism as at the moment of laying-in of the engram.

There is no folly or facet of human activity which cannot be dramatized. An immediate alleviation can be achieved when addressing an aberree who is in identity dramatization by acting upon the fact that the conditions of auditing, with no exception, already exist; i.e., the preclear returned to the moment of occurrence. Affinity may be established and dianetic auditing begun at once. He can be persuaded to listen for the phrases he is uttering and they can be alleviated by exhaustion on routine procedure.



The main points of this chapter are as follows:

The contents of the engramic node are dramatized when that node is activated by similar content appearing in the environment. There is no aspect of human activity, which cannot be dramatized.

A person is more prone to dramatization when he is sick, tired or worn out. Rest, sleep, nutritious food, and change of environment may help reduce the dramatization.

He may be persuaded to listen to the phrases he is uttering as part of the dramatization. He may then meditate on those phrases with mindfulness and see what comes up. As the understanding about those phrases dawns, it diffuses the engramic node..