“Understanding the E-Meter,” . . . No “Science” in Scientology.

The Scientific howlers pronounced by L. Ron Hubbard are so many and varied that if you were to try to select one as the “best” or the “biggest.” you would be hard pressed to choose one.  After all, when Hubbard failed the subject of “nuclear physics,” at George Washington University he took his ignorance, tucked it under his arm, and carried it right into Scientology.

Auditing, the response to certain questions posed to the subject by another person is the main practice of Scientology.  To evaluate the subject’s response the person being audited will hold on to two metal “cans” attached to a small box known as an “E-Meter” or the “Hubbard electro-psychometer   This device was invented in the early 1950’s by Volney Mathison, a chiropractor.  From an engineering point of view it is simply a  Wheatstone bridge that measures a galvanic skin response to a small amount of electricity passed through the body.  There was nothing new in this, plans for similar devices were to be found in the popular pulp “do-it-yourself” magazines of that era as being a sort of primitive lie-detector.

At some point Hubbard discovered that he could make any claim he wanted no matter of foolish, stupid or asinine and his followers would believe it.  That is the only way that I can understand how a man who served in the US Navy, sailed boats, ships and yachts, and who was literate enough to have some college even if he didn’t graduate, could make the claim that people have the power to create mass, physical, detectable mass, using only thoughts and “mental powers.”  If I am wrong and L. Ron Hubbard honestly believed that it was not only possible to creat matter from “mental energy” then he was not just another charlatan.  No, in that case he would be just plain nuts.


The book herein being quoted is Understanding the E-Meter by L. Ron Hubbard, Bridge Publications, 1982.

 “In Scientology is has been discovered that mental energy is simply a finer, higher level of physical energy.  The test of this is conclusive in that a thetan “mocking up” (creating) mental image pictures and thrusting them into the body can increase the body mass and by casting them away again can decrease the body mass.  This test has actually been made and an increase of as much as thirty pounds, actually measured on scales, has been added to, and subtracted from, a body by creating ‘mental energy.’  Energy is energy,  matter is condensed energy.”

 Here some mope of a kid shows how this works.  Forget dieting, just lose weight from getting rid of the “mental energy.’

Above.  This chart shows it all.  By the same line of reasoning you could make your laptop lighter by simply dumping the files.

First the meter, then the salad.

Here Hubbard shows what an auditor can do if he tires of auditing people.  Rocks are next.

In Scientology the random swing of an E-Meter needle can land you in the cult prison for months or years.  Your whole life can depend on Hubbard’s junk science, but instead of a roll of the dice it is the twitch on a meter.   In the end this piece of junk science served on purpose and one purpose only; it lent a certain Scientific air to Scientology making it look like something that was built on hard facts.  Nothing, of course, could be farther from the truth.

For another take on the E-Meter, this time by a former Scientologist, Mark Plummer, go here.  http://www.skeptictank.org/gen2/gen00050.htm

Published in: on March 16, 2012 at 10:56 am  Leave a Comment  

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