(from the "EXTERIORIZATION AND HAVINGNESS" cassette series)

(A lecture given on 7 February 1956 by L. Ron Hubbard)


Now, a person doesn't just go crazier and crazier as he gets older and
older. This is a natural conclusion one should make, but a person would
go crazier and crazier to the degree that he had less and less game. And
if it got to be less game and then less game, and if it was always less
game than it had been, yes, this would be true that a person would get
crazier and crazier the older he got.

But that doesn't happen to be the case. The state of game varies. In
fact, this Earth was in a wilder turmoil within all of our easy memories
than it's ever before been, perhaps, since the days when the volcanoes
were blowing their stacks. It was an interesting mess, World War II. You
talk about chaos and a game involvement.

Well, what's very funny is, World War II, of course, produced an
enormous amount of insanity in the armed forces. It must have because
there are a lot of people in hospitals. The first time I ever suspected
this fact was the first time I ever confronted that fact: that there was
some coordination between being disenfranchised from a game and going
mad. Found that out. It was quite interesting.

I was flown in from the South Pacific as the first casualty to be
shipped out of the South Pacific war back to the States. The war had
been started in Pearl Harbor, and I'd been down in the South Pacific and
- a lot of things happened down there. And the outfits down there were
pretty well wiped out, as you can remember before the US and Great
Britain started to fight and go back in. All right.

Most of the guys that were shipped out of there who had been wounded,
were shipped out by slow boat. And I didn't, I wasn't that seriously
done in. I hooked a ride on the Secretary of Navy's plane; produced the
right set of orders (I hope nobody ever kept them on file) and got flown
home. And when I got home, they turned me in to the hospital.

And I thought, "That's an interesting place to get turned in to, and -
but it's nice. Fine as far as I'm concerned."

And I was lying very comfortably in my bunk about eight o'clock in the
morning when there was a funny looking joker with glasses about a foot
thick standing down at the bottom of my bed. And he looked at me very
piercingly and he said, "How many fingers am I holding up?"

Well, I did a double take, and I was all of a sudden going to give him a
facetious reply in . . . and - because my morale wasn't very bad; his
was, though. And I remembered a friend of mine had been thrown into
Bellevue Hospital for ten days one time when he was drunk, simply
because he had answered silly answers to these obvious absurdities. So,
I said carefully, "One.

And he looked at me very piercingly and he prowled around the side of
the bed and he grabbed ahold of the clock that was sitting there and he
pulled it around and he says, "What time is it?"

So, I told him. He looked very disappointed. He asked me for my name,
rank and serial number and I gave them to him. He left.

All day long there was a parade of people walking in and saying strange
things to me. At the end of that day, the whole hospital had deserted me
except, of course, one very good-looking nurse. But anyhow, the point
was they had lost interest and they were very confused.

Everybody knew, up to that time, that no man could stand the stress of
modern war. They knew that a Stuka bomber, in diving, drove men mad.
They knew that the terrific, unexpected attacks and heroic forces being
employed were such as to plow you in. Your psyche would get unpsyched in
a hurry if you were shot at enough.

And yet here, a fellow, a young officer, had the utter brass to come
along and throw aside this theory. They didn't like me anymore. In fact,
they simply reported to Washington, DC that I was in good condition - I
was, by the way, walking with a cane. I was in good condition. I
couldn't see. I had dark glasses on, but I, you know, I was doing all
right in a kind of a dumb sort of way, and they sent me to sea in the
North Atlantic the following week. That shows you what happens to people
that disprove people's theories.

But during the remainder of that week, I became very curious at their
tremendous and absorbing interest in neurosis, not in me, but in this
fact, because their psychoneurotic wards were full - jammed from door to
door with members of the armed services.

From where? There were no casualties home yet - till I established this
very interesting fact: they had all gone nuts in navy yards. Of course,
I can imagine somebody going crazy in a navy yard. But not with this
wild abandon. And as the war progressed, I discovered consistently and
consecutively that the people who were going into these places were the
people who were not being permitted to fight the war.

Interesting, isn't it? During the armed - the amphibious forces, I had a
vessel that was carrying attack cargo during the last few months I was
at sea in the war, and that vessel, for a long time was getting -
because it was pretty upset and there were a lot of people aboard it -
it was getting a couple of psychos a week. It was not a combat ship.

There was a story made about that vessel, by the way. It was called
Mister Roberts. You may have seen this picture or read the book. Now,
the boys were going crazy on that ship. Inactivity. They would very
often be permitted to see a beachhead being blown up, and take no part
in it at all. They were beautifully protected. They always slept in warm
bunks, and it was too much for them, and they were going mad.

So, if we look at madness, we had better also examine not-doingness. We
had better also examine where did this fellow get disenfranchised? Where
was this fellow not permitted to play the game? That is actually more
important than any other single factor in the case.


(Excerpt from "The Game of Life" lecture by L. Ron Hubbard, 7-Feb-1956)