by L. Ron
The subject of philosophy is very ancient. The word means:
love, study or pursuit of wisdom, or of
knowledge of things and
their causes, whether
theoretical or practical."
All we know of science or of religion comes from philosophy.
lies behind and above all other knowledge we have
For long regarded as a subject reserved for halls of learning
the intellectual, the subject, to a remarkable
degree, has been
denied the man in the
Surrounded by protective coatings of impenetrable
philosophy has been reserved to the
The first principle of my own philosophy is that wisdom is
for anyone who wishes to reach for it. It is
the servant of the
commoner and king alike and
should never be regarded with awe.
Selfish scholars seldom forgive anyone who seeks to break down
walls of mystery and let the people in. Will
Durant, the modern
American philosopher, was
relegated to the scrap heap by his fellow
when he wrote a popular book on the subject, _The
of Philosophy_. Thus brickbats come the way
of any who seek to
bring wisdom to the people over
the objections of the "inner
The second principle of my own philosophy is that it must
capable of being applied.
Learning locked in mildewed books is of little use to
therefore of no value unless it can be
The third principle is that any philosophic knowledge is
valuable if it is true or if it
These three principles are so strange to the field of
that I have given my philosophy a name:
Scientology. This means
only "knowing how to
philosophy can only be a *route* to knowledge. It cannot
crammed down one's throat. If one has a route, he
can then find
what is true for him. And that is
Know thyself...and the truth shall set you free.
Therefore, in Scientology, we are not concerned with
actions or differences. We are only
concerned with how to show man
how he can set
This, of course, is not very popular with those who depend
slavery of others for their living or
power. But it happens to be
the only way I have
found that really improves an individual's
Suppression and oppression are the basic causes of depression.
you relieve those a person can lift his head,
become well, become
happy with life.
And though it may be unpopular with the slave master, it is
popular with the people.
Common man likes to be happy and well. He likes to be able
understand things, and he knows that his route to
Therefore, for 15 years I have had mankind knocking on my
has not mattered where I have lived or how
remote, since I first
published a book on the
subject my life has no longer been my own.
like to help others and count it as my greatest pleasure in
to see a person free himself of the shadows
which darken his days.
These shadows look so thick to him and weigh him down so that
he finds they *are* shadows and that he can see
through them, walk
through them and be again in the
sun, he is enormously delighted.
And I am afraid I
am just as delighted as he is.
have seen much human misery. As a very young man I
through Asia and saw the agony and misery
of overpopulated and
underdeveloped lands. I have
seen people uncaring and stepping over
dying men in
the streets. I have seen children less than rags and
bones. And amongst this poverty and degradation I found holy
where wisdom was great, but where it was
carefully hidden and given
out only as superstition.
Later, in Western universities, I saw man
with materiality and with all his cunning; I saw him
what little wisdom he really had in forbidding
halls and make it
inaccessible to the common and
less favored man. I have been
through a terrible war
and saw its terror and pain uneased by a
of decency and humanity.
have led no cloistered life and hold in contempt the wise man
has not *lived* and the scholar who will not
There have been many wiser men than I, but few have travelled
have seen life from the top down and the bottom up. I know how
looks both ways. And I know there *is* wisdom and
that there is
Blinded with injured optic nerves, and lame with physical
to hip and back at the end of World War II,
I faced an almost
nonexistent future. My service
record states: "This officer has no
psychotic tendencies of any kind whatsoever," but it
also states "permanently disabled physically."
And so there came a further blow...I was abandoned by family
friends as a supposedly hopeless cripple and a
probable burden upon
them for the rest of my days. I
yet worked my way back to fitness and
less than two years, using only what I knew and
determine about man and his relationship to
the universe. I had no
one to help me; what I had to
know I had to find out. And it's
quite a trick
studying when you cannot see.
became used to being told it was all impossible, that there
no way, no hope. Yet I came to see again and
walk again, and I
built an entirely new life. It is
a happy life, a busy one and I
hope a useful one. My
only moments of sadness are those which come
bigoted men tell others all is bad and there is no
anywhere, no hope anywhere, nothing but
sadness and sameness and
desolation, and that every
effort to help others is false. I know
it is not
So my own philosophy is that one should share what wisdom he
one should help others to help themselves, and
one should keep
going despite heavy weather for
there is always a calm ahead. One
should also ignore
catcalls from the selfish intellectual who
"Don't expose the mystery. Keep it all for ourselves.
people cannot understand."
But as I have never seen wisdom do any good kept to oneself,
I like to see others happy, and as I find the
vast majority of the
people can and *do* understand,
I will keep on writing and working
and teaching so
long as I exist.
For I know no man who has any monopoly upon the wisdom of
universe. It belongs to those who *can* use it
to help themselves
If things were a little better known and understood, we would
lead happier lives.
And there is a way to know them and there is a way to
The old must give way to the new, falsehood must become
by truth, and truth, though fought, always
in the end prevails.