Operation Clambake present:
OT III Scholarship Page
Founded Jan. 19, 1997, by David S. Touretzky (email@example.com) This page is based on this page.
Q: Why can't Lisa McPherson read this page?
A: Because she's dead.
Our sympathy to her family, and the families of all Scientology victims.
Space Opera as Theology: Scientology's OT III
This page is dedicated to the analysis and criticism of what Scientologists
must consider to be the most significant document in the history of the
human race: L. Ron Hubbard's "OT III". (See legal notes below.) The
first page of this historic work, jotted down in Hubbard's own hand, is
The head of the Galactic
Confederation (76 planets around
larger stars visible from here)
(founded 95,000,000 yrs ago, very space opera)
solved overpopulation (250 billion
or so per planet) -- 178 billion
average) by mass implanting.
He caused people to be brought to
Teegeeack (Earth) and put an H Bomb
on the principal volcanoes (Incident 2)
and then the Pacific area ones
were taken in boxes to Hawaii
and the Atlantic Area ones to
Las Palmas and there "packaged."
His name was Xenu. He used
renegades. Various misleading
data by means of circuits etc.
were placed in the implants.
When through with his crime Loyal Officers
(to the people) captured him
after 6 years of battle
and put him in an electronic
mountain trap where he still
is. "They" are gone. The place (Confed.)
has since been a desert.
How do you know this was actually written by L. Ron Hubbard?
The document was authenticated by Helena Kobrin, lawyer for Religious
Technology Center, in a letter sent to Carnegie Mellon's legal counsel on
January 24, 1997. Her assistance is much appreciated.
Do Scientologists really believe this stuff?
Yes, they do. This essay by Bob Minton describes the Scientology
world-view that emerges from OT III.
What comes after OT III?
After OT III comes NOTs, or NED for OTs (New
Era Dianetics for Operating Thetans), which covers levels OT IV through OT VII.
More body thetan stuff. You can learn about NOTs at the NOTs Scholars Home Page.
Was Xenu a drug-inspired hallucination, or a rip-off from
Prignillius contributed this interesting posting concerning how
Hubbard's drug use may have contributed to OT III.
A reader writes to inform us that "... the body thetans idea is similiar to
Gurdjieff's `Organ Kundabuffer': an organ supposedly implanted (long ago) in
human bodies in order to twist their perception of reality. The whole of Gurdjieff's work was aimed to destroy the
consequences of this Organ (as repeated many times in his Beelzebub's Tales
to his Grandson book)."
- Funny that there is no date on this page. Hubbard dated everything. Two
later pages of the 20 page handwritten manuscript bear the date October 28,
1968, but the first three pages have no date. Was he too spaced out when he
wrote this to remember such details? Why did he write (1) twice at the top of
the first page?
- The penmanship in this document is poor. Hubbard switches between cursive
and printed styles seemingly at random. Notice the "b" in "billion" is printed
the first time and cursive the second. And reader Jeff Lee points out that
"[Hubbard's] punctuation is atrocious. He also shows some inconsistency in
dotting his i's and crossing his t's."
- He underlines three words, presumably for emphasis: the word "then", and the
place names Hawaii and Las Palmas. It's hard for a lay reader to
see why emphasis is needed here. However, location is very important in
Scientology auditing: they believe it necessary to "date/locate" an incident in
order to properly identify it and "blow the charge" from the engram. Hubbard's
definition of "truth" is the exact time, place, form, and event. Hence, location
is emphasized here because this information will be needed later to identify
which implant station the person (thetan) was taken to. Note that
Teegeeack and Earth are not underlined.
- Hubbard writes "volcanoes" where my preferred spelling (and the one used in
Wakefield's book and the Fishman Declaration) is "volcanos". However, the
version of OT III in Scamizdat #5 has "volcanoes". Dictionaries list both
spellings. Equally acceptable spellings are listed in alphabetical order, so
"volcanoes" appears first, but it is not marked as the preferred form.
- Most of the volcanos cited in the "data" section of OT III (later in the
document) did not exist 75 million years ago. See the list here
- Hubbard capitalizes "H Bomb" where the convention (at least now) is
- Note that Hubbard uses the correct spelling of "principal". He does not
appear to be a bad speller. (It would be impossible to check this by looking at
printed Scientology literature, since his output was checked and edited by
underlings before publication.)
- Note the reference to "Incident 2". In both the Fishman Declaration and
Wakefield versions of OT III this is transcribed as "Incident II", i.e., using
roman numerals, and this convention is also followed in the Vorlon edition of
the FLAG NOTs pack. Martin Ottman's transcription says "Incident 2". In
Hubbard's original document, arabic numbers or the words "One" and "Two" are
used, but never roman numerals.
- The heavy use of parenthetical interjections gives the page the tone of a
verbal report, but examining the actual document shows that a couple of these
were inserted later, so this cannot be a verbatim transcript. The first one,
"(founded 95,000,000 yrs ago, very space opera)", appears to be an insert
because it uses smaller letters and smaller inter-line spacing than the rest of
the text. The second one is "(Confed.)", which clarifies the meaning of "place".
This is expanded to "(Confederation)" in the typeset versions of OT III I've
seen, such as Wakefield's (cited below.)
- On the RJ-67 tape (Ron's Journal #67), Hubbard uses "Confederacy" rather
- Two other insertions are noteworthy. The "with his crime" phrase, the only
interjection not parenthesized, indicates that it was Xenu who was "through",
rather than the implanting of an individual reaching completion. And the "(to
the people)" comment clarifies that the officers were loyal to Xenu's victims,
not Xenu. The visual appearance of this comment shows that it could not have
been inserted later. On the other hand, it is ungrammatical, suggesting that
Hubbard realized the ambiguity at the moment he finished the preceding line, and
stuck in the parenthetical comment to resolve it.
- Attorney Douglas M. Johnson suggests (see bottom of
page) that the word I've transcribed as "loyal" may actually be "Royal".
- The document has a telegraphic style in places, suggesting it was scribbled
down in haste. One example is the abbreviation "yrs" in the first parenthetical
comment. (All the typeset versions of OT III I've seen expand this to "years".)
Another example is the ungrammatical "(to the people)" insertion.
- On pages 2-3 Hubbard suggests he may be the only person in 75,000,000 years
to have discovered the implant and lived to tell about it. The raw, breathless
tone of this document, and the fact that it is still presented to Scientologists
in its original handwritten form, heighten the reader's sense of being there
with Hubbard in 1967 when he emerges "very knocked out but alive" to scribble
down his momentous discovery.
- It's hard to see how a galactic confederation could become a "desert" except
in a highly metaphorical sense. What happened to all the folks who defeated
Xenu's renegades? Is Xenu, still locked in his mountain trap, the lone survivor
of his race?
- Logical contradiction: how can there be 250 billion "or so" per planet if
the average number was 178 billion?
The Xenu/Xemu Controversy
- This page contains one of the few appearances of the word "Xenu"
in print in the Scientology scriptures. (To the best of my knowledge, this
is the only occurrence in Hubbard's own handwriting.) I've heard that
there was an OT III teacher's manual that contained "Xemu" in print, and in
at least one case the word was crossed out and "Xenu" was handwritten in,
but I have not been able to confirm this. The ex-Scientologists I've
personally spoken with say "Xenu" is the more commonly used form.
- There is reference to the OT III story in the RJ-67 tape cited by
Kendrick Moxon in his deposition of Jeff Jacobsen (see below). Moxon says
"Xenu" in the deposition, but Xenu himself is not mentioned on that
- Why did Warren McShane say "Xemu" rather than "Xenu" in his testimony
in the FACTNet case in Colorado? (Transcript below.) This may be a
transcription error, since Robert Vaughn Young, a former high-level
Scientologist turned critic who also testified that day, is shown using the
same pronunciation. RTC lawyer Helena Kobrin has been known to block out
the word "Xenu" in some of her legal correspondence, so perhaps saying
"Xemu" is a Scientologist's way of avoiding pronunciation of the real word.
It's clear from the document image that Hubbard really did write "Xenu" and
not "Xemu". And two people who knew Hubbard have told me that the name is
definitely "Xenu", although one recalled that there was one place where
"Xemu" was used. Presumably that was the Class VIII Assists tape.
- There are several spoken mentions of "Xemu" on the Class VIII
Assists tape. A partial transcript of this tape appeared in Scamizdat
#5. Sound clips are available here in several formats: WAV, PCM, or
RealAudio files. (You can download a free RealAudio player by clicking here.)
In the first excerpt Hubbard appears unsure about the name:
xemu0.wav, xemu0.ram, xemu0.pcm:
Aren't thetans supposed to have perfect recall of all their memories? How
come Hubbard can't remember whether the biggest villain in galactic history
is named Xenu or Xemu? Wouldn't such a thing be indelibly burned into his
menal image pictures of his life as a space alien?
And they had elected a fellow by the name of Xenu, ahhh, could
be spelled X-E-M-U, to the supreme "rulah", and they were about to
unelect him. And he took the last moments he had in office to
really "goof the floof."
The remaining four instances on the tape are all "Xemu":
- xemu1.wav, xemu1.ram: "Xemu missed."
- xemu2.wav, xemu2.ram: "which Xemu had brought in"
- xemu3.wav, xemu3.ram:
"so on, the administrators that had been loyal to Xemu were"
- xemu4.wav, xemu4.ram:
"Xemu was put with several of his cohorts in the center of a mountain"
So, if the transcript is accurate, Hubbard himself was unclear whether the
name was Xenu or Xemu. His associates insist that he always said "Xenu",
and in this tape he does start out with "Xenu", but then he continues with
Isn't this material a trade secret?
No, it's not, according to the sworn testimony of Warren McShane, president
of Religious Technology Center, in civil action no. 95-B-2143, Religious
Technology Center v. F.A.C.T.Net, Inc., et al., U.S. District Court for the
District of Colorado:
24 A The very first tab under Tab No. 1. You can see there are
And later in his testimony:
25 references to the Galactic confederation, 76 planets, but
1 within that there is information on what are called incidents
2 that you see there, Your Honor, in parentheses. Those itself
3 are trade secret. Any descriptions in that first page which
4 actually described what happened to the individual himself is
5 a trade secret.
6 But it may be easier to explain what's not. The
7 discussion of the -- of the volcanoes, the explosions, the
8 Galactic confederation 75 million years ago, and a gentleman
9 by the name Xemu there. Those are not trade secrets. The
10 officers mentioned there are not. But the -- the parts in
11 there that actually described what happened to the individual
12 and how to handle it, especially when it goes onto page 2 from
13 that point forward, that is trade secret.
14 Q Everything thereafter?
15 A Yes.
16 MR. KELLEY: Is page 2 Tab 2?
17 THE WITNESS: Tab 2, I'm sorry.
18 THE WITNESS: This particular exhibit I am looking at
And here's Warren talking about mention of Xenu in
Ron's Journal 67 in the FACTNet case. See also the statement by Scientology
lawyer Kendrick Moxon, during the deposition of
Jeff Jacobsen in the Arnie Lerma case, that the Xenu story "has been a
matter of public record for many years".
19 is O.T. III. And as I explained to the court the other day,
20 when we were talking about what's generally known in the 75
21 million years ago and Xemu and the volcanoes, which is
22 knowledge that has been known for years, that is contained in
23 bits and pieces in the first paragraph of page 1. This is
24 page 3. Your Honor, if you look at the first full paragraph,
25 it starts with "one's" on the handwritten part.
1 THE COURT: All right.
2 THE WITNESS: First full paragraph where it says
3 "one's body." From that point on -- at least on that point is
4 what's trade secret. Mr. Hubbard describing what has occurred
5 to the individual, not the general description of what events
6 happened 75 million years ago, but what happened to the
7 individual person. That is a trade secret. That's what's not
8 published in any works. From that point forward is a
9 description of the actual technology itself and how to undo
10 that great catastrophe that occurred.
McShane is mistaken when he says the OT III data beginning "one's body"
remains a trade secret. This material has been published in several places,
including Margery Wakefield's book, where the first three pages of the OT III
document are quoted in full. And see Jon Atack's ``OT 3 for Beginners'' for a
synopsis that spills all the secrets.
Isn't this material subject to copyright?
It may be. The copyright registration number is TXu-290-496. The
copyright is currently owned by the Church of Spiritual Technology, and
licensed to Religious Technology Center, both Scientology shell
corporations. However, the US Copyright Code provides for "fair use"
quotation for purposes of comment and criticism, and this web page clearly
falls in that category. There is also some evidence that the copyright filing might be fraudulent.
Is this drivel worth anything at all?
Scientology thinks it's worth thousands of dollars. Check out this advertisement and price list for their ``OT III Wall of
Fire'' course. Scientology has gone to great lengths to keep OT III secret, as
detailed in this 1985 LA Times article.
Where can I read the rest of OT III?
The following list, filed as an appendix to an injunction in
the Erlich case, sets out the contents of the OT III course:
- Scans of the actual 20 handwritten pages of OT III were present (as of
January 2003) on a Russian web server. Please read the Russian webmaster's legal statement explaining why
this unauthorized distribution is permissible under Russian law.
- Andreas Heldal Lund, maintainer of the Operation Clambake web site, has said that he
will make copies of OT III available on request for
journalists and researchers.
OT III - including but not limited to the following works:
HCOB 4 May 1968 Character of______
HCOB 4 May 1968 ________ Auditing
UCOB 4 May 1968R ________ Auditing
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 4 May 1968 Issue II Overrun on III
HCOB 4 May 1968R Issue II Overrun on III
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 23 August 1968 Arbitraries
HCOB 2 October 1968 OT III
HCOB 2 October 1968R OT III
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 26 August 1969 OT III Case Supervision
HCOB 26 August 1969R OT III Case Supervision
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 13 October 1969 Issue II OT III Errors
HCOB 13 October 1969R Issue II OT III Errors
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 25 October 1969R Formation
HCOB 25 October 1969RA Formation
Revised 20 September 1978
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 5 February 1970 The Basic
HCOB 5 February 1970R The Basic
Revised 16 August 1983
HCOB 5 February 1970 Issue II Definitions, Sec. III
HCOB 12 April 1970 Running OT III
HCOB 9 July 1971 Section III Running
HCO PL 14 January 1972 Issue I The Green Green Form Revised
HCOB 14 September 1978 Dianetics Forbidden on Clears and OTs
HCOB 2 November 1978R Dianetics Deleted from OT III Materials
Revised 10 December 1978
HCOB 10 December 1978 Addition to OT III Pack
HCOB 4 July 1979 Handling Correction Lists on OTs
HCO PL 19 November 1980 OT 3 Solo Auditor Training Course
HCOB 14 August 1983 C.C. Implant
HCOB 15 August 1983 Flying Ruds on Solo OT III and Above
HCOB 16 August 1983 Ruds Going Out
HCOB 17 August 1983 List of LRH Handwritten Materials on OT III Course
Attachment No 1 - Data
Attachment No 2 - 2nd Note
Attachment No 3 - 1st Note
Attachment No 4 - Instructions
Attachment No 5 - Section III OT
Attachment No 6 - 3rd Note
Attachment No 7 - Important Note
HCOB 2 July 1984 Issue II Assessment
HCOB 8 June 1970 Issue II Secret
- Atack, Jonathan. (1996) OT 3 -
Scientology's "secret" course rewritten for beginers.
- Fishman, Steven. (1993)
Declaration filed April 9, 1993 in connection with civil case 91-6426
HLH (Tx), Church of Scientology International v. Steven Fishman and Uwe
Geertz, US District Court for the Central District of California. Pages
76-100 contain the text of OT III.
- Hubbard, Lafayette Ronald. (1968) Operating Thetan Section III.
Handwritten manuscript. Available online
courtesy of Andreas Heldal-Lund.
- McShane, Warren. (1995) Transcript of testimony in civil action no.
95-B-2143, Religious Technology Center v. F.A.C.T.Net, Inc., et al., U.S.
District Court for the District of Colorado. Proceedings before the
Honorable John L. Kane on September 11, 1995.
- Ottman, Martin. (1996) Posting to Usenet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology titled
"New (old) OT III material". Posted in November, 1996, under the name
firstname.lastname@example.org. Contains a transcript of the first handwritten page of OT
III, and several HCOBs comprising the OT III Course Pack.
- Scamizdat Staff. (1995) Scamizdat #5. Contains a partial transcript
of L. Ron Hubbard's "Class VIII Course, Lecture #10", commonly known as the
Class VIII Assists tape, a lecture delivered October 3, 1968 aboard the
Scientology ship Apollo. Hubbard discusses Xenu/Xemu by name. Scamizdat
#5 was published on the Usenet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology in May,
- Spaink, Karin. (1996) Summary of OT III.
Ruled legal by a Dutch court.
- Vorlon. (1996) The
FLAG NOTs Pack. This is referred to as the "Vorlon edition". For more
information, see the NOTs
Scholars Home Page.
- Wakefield, Margery. (1991) The
Road to Xenu. The first three pages of OTIII are quoted in
chapter 13 . This chapter also gives the full descriptions of
Incidents 1 and 2, which are referred to in OT III auditing.
Test your knowledge of OT III by taking a quiz. Level 1 is funny and easy.
Level 2 is much harder, but anyone who has truly earned their OT III
certificate should pass it without trouble.
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