What was working in the Sea Org like?

Posted: August 22, 2013 in Uncategorized
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When you look back at your first year in the Sea Org, it had to be a big shock.  What were some of the aspects that affected you the most, or surprised you the most, after coming from a regular environment.

We use the term “regular” environment here loosely, because I was raised in a Scientology family.

The Sea Org is basically an insular society. It’s full of people who’s thought processes have been forcefully adjusted to work exactly the same. The entire structure is designed to work on punishment. The schedule is rigorous and does not change. Your focus is on getting your work done by the end of the day so you can start the next day and get even more work done. It’s like a hamster running on a wheel. You can run as fast as you want, and it might feel like you’re going somewhere, but you’re not. Every time you finish, you’re right back where you started.

Some people compare them to the military or call the Sea Org a paramilitary organization. It’s not. The Sea Org is more like prison. There are no freedoms. You are hardly allowed to leave the organization at all. There is no TV, no radio, no news, no internet, no interaction with the outside world. The food is bland. The same food is always served on the same days. People steal from each other because no one can afford basic needs (like soap, snacks, toothpaste, toothbrush, socks, underwear, etc.). The Sea Org provides you with only the most basic sustenance: food, a roof and a bed. I think prison gives you even more than that. The uniforms are not paramilitary uniforms, they are prison jumpsuits.

Uniforms are paid for and dry cleaning is paid for, but uniform parts are stolen all the time. I had 5 shirts issued to me when I started. For the next three years I was never issued a new shirt. I was down to 2 by the time I left.

Because the work hours are so long (18 hours a day, average), hygiene sometimes goes out the window. Some people get black rings on their necks and collars. Some people smell just awful. Athlete’s foot was rampant. Stinky breath. Ugh.

There’s not really a “friendship” in the Sea Org. You usually don’t discuss anything other than work. There’s no time for anything other than work. By the time the day ends and you get back to the dorms (which I shared with 30 other people) you are so exhausted you just want to sleep for a few hours before going back to work.

My room of 30 people stunk. Living conditions were squalor. The windows were broken. There was no ventilation, a/c or heat. Showers were dirty with mold and mildew. Like I said, athlete’s foot was rampant. No one had money for Tinactin or Lotramin. We spent all our money on basic hygiene needs, detergent, underwear, socks, shoes, etc.

There is a place in the Sea Org called “Isolation” or “Iso” for short. It’s a room where sick people are sent. In 2002 there was an outbreak of either food poisoning or stomach flu. I was in that tiny room with 15 other sick guys. We all had diarrhea and vomiting. You can imagine how that was. It smelled horrid in there. The only plus side: I didn’t have to work for three days. The downside: When you get back you have to submit to confessionals because the only reason you can get sick in Scientology is if you have crimes.

The theft was the most shocking thing out of all of that, probably. It was one of the first things I ran into. I told my dad about it and got reamed by a superior for sharing that information with someone. I had a book of CDs, a bathrobe, a lamp, a fan and a trunk that locked to keep my stuff in. All of that was gone in a matter of months. The last thing was my entire trunk was stolen from me. I reported it every time something was stolen. No one cared.

One of the characteristics of an “evil” person in Scientology is that they don’t think that anyone owns anything. Well the Sea Org is the epitome of that.

There is no healthcare. Barely enough food to feed everyone. You’re constantly getting yelled at, and running around like a fool. No matter what you do, you always do something wrong. There’s no time to sleep, read, watch TV, or go on the internet. It’s a dog eat dog world. Prisoners have more respect for each other, get more respect from society and have healthcare.  That is what it’s like working for the “Church” of Scientology.

Another similarity between prisoners and Sea Org members is that some prisoners lose friends and family because of the crimes they committed. Sea Org members lose family because they leave the cult after tiring of the abuse. Still, I know more prisoners that are in touch or living with their families than people who have left the “Church” of Scientology.

And now I am getting angry, so I’ll stop here.

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