Let me begin with...I'm a huge advocate of not judging anything I don't understand, have not studied, or have not tried on myself.
I'm also not a huge fan of gossip or allowing other people's opinions to lead me to or away from anything. This includes people. Some may call me disloyal but if you need me to hate another human being, another race, another religion on your behalf, we probably can not be friends and I'm okay with that. I won't do that, not for anyone.
I'm as human as anyone else and therefore vent to my support system, yet I'm very selective on who my support system is.
Same concept applies for me with various life enhancing or life enriching education. I need to experience things for myself to know what anything is.
I subscribe very heavily to the theory "take what you want and leave the rest."
Landmark Education came into my awareness at the gym one day. I just sat next to a man who was sharing a breathtaking story about how he was able to reunite with his estranged family members. There was something about his love leading and his freedom that had me say instantly "Can I come to this?" That's really all it took to get me there. I was already a yes before I even know the full extent of what landmark was.
Dianetics fell on my lap. I just happened to pick up the phone one day in a friends business and the conversation went deeper. The next thing I knew, this person bought me 15 hours of Dianetics Auditing as a gift.
Having done over 35 hours of Dianetics auditing & being on the upper side of "The bridge, in addition to taking numerous courses at the org in Philadelphia-I can only share from the point of my own experiences.
What I loved the most about pre-auditing was: You can not be on any substance, you need to eat and sleep well and take care of yourself before, during and after. Clean. I like clean.
They recommend taking B1. B1 benefits a healthy nervous system and the work you will be doing inside of an auditing room (which is different for everyone) is recalling memories. You will be doing this so thoroughly and until you have reclaimed every aspect of that memory. You keep going down the track (If you have seen the disney movie Inside Out-this is a connector) Throughout our lives memories get stored. Painful ones get filed in a specific place in our brains and anything that represents the origin of that memory will trigger you. Maybe when you were 2 you ate a rotten egg and now you are 42 and the smell of eggs makes you want to vomit. If you regained access to the origin (your two year old memory) in an auditing room, and reclaimed every aspect of that memory (even sound, voices, the weather that day, and more) that memory would get refiled back into the part of your brain that doesn't get triggered and you would no longer feel the sensation of wanting to vomit every time you smelled an egg.
I am simplifying. It's much more complex than that. Our memories are much more complex than my example, I'm just trying to give you the over all flavor.
The auditor doesn't "do," anything to you. There is no weirdness, oddity, and there is no "hypnosis," there's just a way to snap out of a memory if it's necessary to do so by having a very pleasant memory available and reviewed before you start. That's just brilliant vs "vodoo." You are being snapped out of a painful memory by your own pleasant memory. That's all that is.
I recalled so many things in that first 15 hours. I had an incident at St Gabriel's Elementary School when I was 7 years old, I recalled this memory so vividly, I could hear that big ole clock on the wall ticking. I recalled being a young person who had a beloved elderly neighbor who died. I loved her so much. I recalled every aspect of that day. I recalled seeing her laying at the top of the steps. I had never seen that before, it stayed with me. She was the most gentle, most loving elderly woman. I also recalled her funeral and my sense of unfairness that her husband's death (prior to hers) everyone came to the funeral, but when she died a few years later, there were not too many people there and that really upset and angered me. I recalled disagreements with my brothers, I recalled all kind of memories. Life, you know, things happen.
I really began to enjoy this process. There was something about recalling my own memories, restoring them and refiling them that really interested me. And then there were these awesome moments where I really knew I was doing that whole "THE FISH WAS THIS BIG" thing. Working so deeply inside of my own mind offered me so much.
It was an extraordinary experience to have the realization that although the events and incidents did happen, as I was recalling my own memories, I was also recalling all of the parts where I had added elements. And those added elements were not true.
It's that moment when you say "wait, I am BS'ing myself, that's not true!"
And I have to say, what a glorious moment that is. To spot your own BS instantly. I loved that. Underneath my own BS, there was just what happened.
Brilliant. Just brilliant.
(I did not do auditing work with Donovan's birth or death-it's the one thing I was NOT ready to do)
Now anyone who has taken the advance course in landmark education will hear landmark in my words at this point. And that's because I have done work there too. If I had to distinguish between the differences in my experiences with Landmark Education vs Dianetics or Scientology
First let me start with:
I'm really not caring so much about what came first: the chicken or the egg- as much as I care about- the benefits and value of both opportunities bestowed upon me.
Who came first, good vs evil and all that jazzy jazz is a complete waste of my time. And so is.. the need to bash one to make the other one better (refer back to paragraph 3)
Keep in mind, I'm the girl who can go to Church on Sunday, love God, sing "King Jesus" and on Monday love OSHO, or Maharishi. I'm open in that way and my soul is full by being this way.
It is my on-going experience: You can't talk to landmark lovers about Scientology any more than you can talk about Landmark to Scientology lovers. Everybody is loyal to what they are passionate about. That's just how it goes. Me? I show up in all of my weirdness "Oh, I've done them both, I love them both" In the same way a mother with a first born, middle child and baby loves all of her children the same but may have that special bond with... maybe 1 of them for no other reason than perhaps from an astrology standpoint or personality standpoint, they just are meant to be closer. That doesn't mean she does not love all of her children.
I floated into landmark language because you really have to study Scientology to understand the language and the meaning of many of Ron Hubbard's words, and without that thorough education or a Ph.D in engineering-I would just end up sounding like Tom Cruise if I start hitting everyone with words words or abbreviations like, engrams, D of T, SP, PTP, PTS C/S-1
By the way, Tom Cruise used the term "SP" Which all that means is a suppressive person. A suppressive person is a person who suppresses other people in his vicinity. Present time people are mistaken by him for past, long-gone enemies. Therefore, he never knows what he is fighting in present time, so he just fights.
If everyone knew exactly what an SP was-he may have still sounded weird in his passion (because it seems like people are way more comfortable with misery than they are bliss) but at least everyone would have understood what he was talking about.
All that said....
The difference for me is this:
Landmark is great and offers a community of like minded people. It's a bit slower and less individualized than Scientology. While there is value in everyone sharing and stopping while one person gets what they need to get...and there is always something inside of that for everyone-that comes with having to travel to the city for everything. Add up travel time and it can get too stressful for my specific system. My time is a big consideration for me. If I had a home across the street from Landmark Education, I probably would have done more.
Scientology also offers a community but they extend to home study courses and I can walk into the org, have a conversation that is specific and I can pick what I want to work on "specifically." I am free to go into the class room with a supervisor who can help me for however many hours that works with my actual life. In this regard, this is way more appealing to me. There is more freedom to flow.
Sometimes I like to sit in a room for 2-4 straight days from 8 am to midnight with a group of amazing people and work as a tribe- and other times: I like to sit in the comfort of my own home in a private place and dig into my education alone and streamline. There is a part of my brain that can study extremely well alone. My focus becomes like a laser. In that space, something that the average study time takes a few weeks or months, takes me a few hours or a day or two tops. And efficiency makes me very happy.
I also like the absolute thoroughness of Scientology. They teach you thoroughly. There is no such thing as leaving or completing any course without truly "getting" it. I really love that. There are dictionaries lining the walls of the classroom. If you get tired or your interest starts to change, the first place to look is if you skipped over a word you do not understand. I have had this happen and I have to say, I perked up and was back on track once I found that one word I skipped over. Eventually, the next thing I knew, I had the study habits of a ninja. To me, that alone was so worth it.
If I had a choice between taking a landmark course or taking a Scientology course, it would really all depend on my current reality, how much time I have to truly commit and if it will impact or lower my commitment to other things.
Now all of this "EVIL" stuff....
There are so many people who have dedicated their existence to bashing both landmark and Scientology, or people who worked there so "they know" or Ron Hubbard son on what a monster his father was. Okay, none of that sounds very good but I don't really know what's true and what isn't. I was not there and if I'm not there-I don't know anything. I do suspect though, just based on my over-all observation as a person walking this planet for 46 years.. Any time you get a bunch of humans and they go higher and deeper into things...that seems to be where all of that "evil" lives. I don't actually take anything that far. I only work within the confines of what interests me.
I didn't watch T.V for almost 10 years. So I missed that whole Michael Jackson scandal. It was like one day I was watching him moon walk for the first time with my family and the next thing I knew there was this whole scandal that went down for years and I knew nothing about it. I wasn't inundated by Fox News, CNN or whatever.
There are also horror stories circulating about Werner Erhard (the man who started EST that led to Landmark) and some stuff around him and Ron Hubbard going from friends to enemies. These things are really not my business.
Keep in mind, I am The Bio-Stepmom PEACE NEGOTIATOR. I am highly trained to NOT take sides. I am also highly trained to want everyone to live without shame so they can be free. I'm interested in healing vs beating the drum of what's wrong. I have zero interest in writing an entire dissertation on the perils of the past. I prefer to only use the past as a way to get over it or grow from it and in my mind, the internal structure within any organization (which is what both things are) is the responsibility of the leaders in each organization. Combine that with spirituality or religion and things can get a little weird. And I don't really have that internal pressure cooker that I can't say no if I'm a no. So it's easy for me to not deal with any of the intense hard selling that goes down in these organizations.
So that's my story...and I'm sticking to it...