Ken Urquhart - What Was Ron Really Like?

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Ken Urquhart - What Was Ron Really Like?
Name Ken Urquhart
Period St. Hill, Early SO, At Sea
Location St. Hill, Lisbon, Las Palmas, Mediterranean
Note: Ken Urquhart was LRH's personal assistant and communicator for many years both at Saint Hill and on the Apollo. He also became an 'Advanced Course Specialist' (NOTS & Grad V Auditor) which later was designated as Class IX. He probably knew LRH as well as anyone alive today. This address was read to the 2012 Class VIII Reunion held in Los Angeles which Ken was unable to attend due to being in Europe auditing.

Greetings to the Class VIII Reunion of 2012

Ken urquhart.jpg

I am very sorry not to be here in person and I apologize sincerely that I committed to coming here and then felt that circumstances made it too difficult. I’ve decided to put a client’s needs first as I see them, and I can also say that I’m pretty burned out. I wish I were here, though. Through Ian, who is kindly reading my words, I send you friendly and respectful greetings, and my best wishes for a very enjoyable weekend.

Since I got to know Ron pretty well, I thought I’d write down some impressions of him and considerations about him and his work, as they might interest and apply to a gathering such as this. Perhaps I can reinforce your connection to the immense and supremely productive being that you, through your studies and work, know for yourselves that Ron was and always will be.

what was Ron really like[edit | edit source]

I am often asked, “What was Ron REALLY like?” Alas, the question defies answer. There is no answer humanly possible. One has to break it down into parts: “Which Ron are you asking about?” “What period of his life are you thinking of?” Even then, there are aspects of the man one has no way of conveying to another who has not directly experienced him. Some of you have had the great good fortune to experience him directly, person-to-person. If not, you have experienced him through your studies and your practices, and through your own received auditing and therefore are very familiar with who and what he was. In either case, you will agree with me, I’m sure that in his great pluspoints, he by far exceeded that which can be real to anyone occupying a viewpoint that knows nothing more than what is experienced in daily life on Earth. What and who he was/is and what he was all about at his best is beyond ordinary human conception. When you or I or anyone speaks of LRH, we are not talking about an ordinary, everyday, average human being – although, to tell the truth, he could behave like one.

reminders[edit | edit source]

Let’s focus now on a glimpse of the extent of this being whom we knew as LRH, by gathering to ourselves some reminders of what he accomplished. Let’s call to mind these things:

Technical Volumes of Dianetics and Scientology
  • Let’s be aware of the shelf of books we know of as the Red Volumes, old or recent.
The Flagship Apollo, part of the Fleet of ships LRH managed
  • Let’s be aware of the shelf of books we know of as the OEC and Management Series.
  • Let’s be aware of the significance and potential value of just one Management Series – the Data Series, a body of work that would in itself distinguish any philosopher or management guru of any period.
  • Let’s be aware of the shelf of all other published books of LRH’s.
  • Let’s be aware of the over 1,000 tapes of lectures that he gave, whether we think of them as reel-to-reel, cassettes, DVDs, or transcripts.
OEC & Management Volumes
  • Let’s be aware of the magazine articles that he wrote.
  • Let’s be aware of the films that he made.
  • Let’s be aware that he had organizations functioning all over the world.
  • Let’s be aware that he set up and managed Management to take care of all these organizations, day by day.
  • Let’s be aware that he arranged for numbers of ships to be put into service, then manned and operated.
  • Let’s be aware that he could navigate the 3,000-ton boat that was the Apollo into and out of any harbour, and out of any horribly dangerous tight spot we crew might let her sail into.
  • Let’s be aware that he could handle effectively ANY emergency or flap that came up to his level quickly, energetically, sometimes emotionally, but always terminatedly.
  • Let’s be aware of all the Courses based on his materials, delivered daily in organizations all over the world, and of all the people trained on them to deliver technology.
  • Let’s be aware of all the people who have received auditing all over the world and who experienced better lives as a result.
  • Let’s be aware of the care and attention he put into the organizing of the delivery of his tech to pc’s and to students, to make it all work the best it could for those receiving it. There’s not only the 7-division org board, there’s the design of Tech and Qual, and Ethics; there’s the HGC admin, the admin of sessions and folders, the Ivory Tower, What is a Course – all the meticulous detail that makes for smooth delivery of effective technology. We haven’t even mentioned the e-meter.
  • Let’s be aware that he energized a large organization to publish and distribute his books and artifacts.
  • Let’s be aware also of all the people who received imperfect technology, suffered, and caused trouble to the organizations and to him.
  • Let’s be aware that he was present at his post from the moment he got up and completed his research auditing, and was on deck, until the moment he retired to his cabin to rest, certainly when I was with him on the ship.
  • Let’s be aware that he had his human side and could respond in human ways to adversities and disappointments, of which he had plenty.
  • Let’s be aware that he lived his life without a terminal of comparable magnitude.

Ron's office[edit | edit source]

LRH being served a Coca-Cola in his office circa 1964

We’ll return to these things but come with me now as I recall one of the many times he called me into his office on the ship, known as the Research Room. It was on the topmost covered deck; my office was just across the passage, and the Staff Aides very close. One went through the double, shiny glass doors with their heavy, dark, highly polished wooden frames and brass vertical handles, past the messenger or messengers sitting just outside that door. One of the first things to take one’s notice was always the bright red, always shiny linoleum on the floor, with a couple of oriental rugs on it.

Then one noticed his large and heavy desk over in the right-hand corner, against the bulkhead of the room with its windows curtained with gold damask. The other large feature of the room was the old-fashioned fireplace and mantelpiece; above it was a huge mirror. On the occasions I am thinking of, LRH would usually be standing over by the fireplace, to the left, under the mirror. As I entered the door and turned towards him, I could see at once that he was in a bright and expansive mood.

The really interesting thing about approaching him was that at about six feet from his body, it felt almost as though one left the P.U., and entered his personal space. It was like walking suddenly into a very different, very bright and spacious room. He was in a very high tone. He had dealt with his daily traffic and that chore was done. He maybe had dealt with some shore flap that had threatened our continued berth in that port. He might have resolved some shipboard problem that had been puzzling him. He had simply handled everything that had been on his immediate attetion and now he was very ready to expand further into p.t. happily and creatively. He was ready for some play.

LRH Ship12.jpg

As I approached him, he would smile broadly, and it wasn’t that broad smile he saved for social occasions when it behooved him to smile. It was very relaxed, just happy. He might mention something he wanted me to see to. He might make a comment on the day’s traffic, now handled by him and waiting on my desk for rapid distribution. He might run something by me. He might just want to chat. When he was done, I’d turn and leave the room. As I approached the door, I left his personal space and was back again in the P.U., although with an extra spring in my step. In those moments, in his space, one was conscious of a very, very high Affinity and granting of infinite beingness, of an infinite cleanliness, a deep composure, the potential of vast energy directable at will, of a presence exuberantly pleased at the very act of existing and perceiving, but ready to assume any tone level at the blink of an eye. Here was a core of infinite and energetic sanity. In this state, through his body and the physical space around it, he shone all golden, glowing, as pure, strong, and purposeful in beingness as any great fiery Sun. In the end, human-ness and the P.U. got the better of him, but we bow in awe at the job he attempted and the progress he most definitely did make.

LRH - C/S[edit | edit source]

Let’s also be aware of another LRH that I got to know and love: LRH the crew c/s. When he took the ship’s c/sing into his own hands, which happened perhaps 4 or 5 times, he had every current ship pc’s folder brought up to his office while he had dinner with MSH; he’d come back up to his desk to find a tall pile of folders for him to work on. Usually, he’d call me into the office as the first folder was placed in front of him by the attentive Messenger. I’d have to leave my in-basket piled high with traffic which spilled out on to the floor, traffic I had to monitor before he received it, in order to sit with him. He wanted somebody in addition to the messenger to chat to as he went through the folders.

He talked about what he was seeing, what that made him look for, what he found, and what he would do with c/s, auditor, and pc. He thoroughly, thoroughly enjoyed the work. He reveled in his virtuosity. He brought to bear everything that he knew about the tech and its application to bring pc’s out of misery, auditors out of trouble, and c/ses out of confusions. He was very active and energetic in correcting outnesses, although I never saw him get really angry with any auditor or c/s while I was with him as he c/sed.

When he opened a folder of a pc that he’d debugged the night before, he’d open it eagerly, looking to see what the auditor had made of his c/s, and how the pc had responded. When the result was good, he was truly delighted. When it was not good, he applied himself intently to finding out why. Only when all the pcs were f/n VGIs, and all the auditors and c/ses f/n VGIs did he turn the hat back over to the crew c/s or c/ses. This is how much he cared about delivery in his immediate vicinity; one could say that this is how he wanted delivery to be everywhere, always.

purpose[edit | edit source]

Let’s be aware that this was the man who dedicated himself to the delivery of Scn to Planet Earth, whether he was dealing with a ship situation, an external situation (a government or PR flap, for example), a management situation, an organizational situation, or a technical situation. He did all those things so that tech delivery could continue. At his best, he devoted very ounce of his being, his strength, his energy, his intelligence, his diligence, and his power to the following ten things, directly or indirectly:

  1. One. Having the correct technology.
  2. Two. Knowing the technology.
  3. Three. Knowing it is correct.
  4. Four. Teaching correctly the correct technology.
  5. Five. Applying the technology.
  6. Six. Seeing that the technology is correctly applied.
  7. Seven. Hammering out of existence incorrect technology.
  8. Eight. Knocking out incorrect applications.
  9. Nine. Closing the door on any possibility of incorrect technology.
  10. Ten. Closing the door on incorrect application.
  • And let’s be aware that to this end, he spent most of his working life writing the bulletins in the red volumes, the policy letters in the green volumes, writing and publishing all his other books, giving his lectures, making his films, setting up his organizations and their management, managing their management, creating a small fleet of ships, captaining the largest of them in the trickiest of situations, confronting and handling the myriad of shocks and flaps that hit his lines, bearing ultimate responsibility for the standard of tech delivery all over the world, and for the ethics and integrity of every staff member.

imperfections[edit | edit source]

Now, there were imperfections within L.Ron Hubbard, as there are within every being and certainly within every being with human form. The pressures of his load rubbed some of these imperfections, rubbed them raw and in so doing led him into stresses that could bring him down-tone. I am sure that it was very painful to him to operate from a low tone level under these circumstances and he was not always able to exteriorize himself from such stresses.

Thus perhaps he led himself into creating new case after he had found himself, as I saw, without case and at an extremely high level of being. He was caught in a vice partly of his own making: he had taken on the job of finding the way to personal freedom, the way of return to own, authentic, and original self-hood and, with regard to himself, he seemed to have succeeded brilliantly; but he also had to stay around in order to fulfill his purpose of helping others find that way. In staying to help others, there was some invalidation of his own personal case achievement, and for that he paid a bitter price.

We must also acknowledge that although he could be said to have left his work incomplete, he accomplished so much in his work he unquestionably continued on over 3rd D, 4th D, 7th D, and probably 8th D wins which were not only unacknowledged but grossly invalidated by humankind, and still are.

recap[edit | edit source]

Allow me to recap a little. I have asked you to envision some of LRH’s accomplishments, some of his work and his products, some of his habits. That list may not be complete but it is not short and, in terms of ordinary human feats, it is beyond extraordinary; the physically observable aspects are themselves hard to believe as the work of one man in one lifetime; the significance of much of the work ranks with the significance of just about any prophet or spiritual leader who has walked this earth. And the size and the beauty of that being, Ron, at his best is totally beyond anything that your average Earth person, glued to his or her electronic gadgets, the TV, the papers and magazines, the social sites, the movies and the tunes, could have the slightest clue of ever beginning to imagine.

ksw[edit | edit source]

Let me assure you that I don’t want to give you a rant about Keeping Scn Working. I do NOT! But regardless of the apparently horribly perverted emphasis that our institutional friends place on that document seemingly for their own internal political purposes, this document, KSW, has meaning of profound value, profound importance. We need to strip this document of the pain that our friends have implanted on to it and in so doing have obscured its theta.

Again, I go back to my list of LRH’s products, accomplishments, and practices. If you will recall them, or as many of them as really impressed you, and consider all that again against what it means to take on a planet full of all sorts and conditions of men and women, and in order to effectively help them, work ceaselessly on:

One. Having the correct technology.

Two. Knowing the technology.

Three. Knowing it is correct.

Four. Teaching correctly the correct technology.

Five. Applying the technology.

Six. Seeing that the technology is correctly applied.

Seven. Hammering out of existence incorrect technology.

Eight. Knocking out incorrect applications.

Nine. Closing the door on any possibility of incorrect technology.

Ten. Closing the door on incorrect application.

And considering also the possible difficulties of ensuring all of those ten things planet-wide, using all sorts and conditions of men and women as staff members and field members, we do indeed consider both LRH’s life and his Keeping Scn Working document in a light different than the one they are presented in by our friends.

WHY should these ten points have been important to LRH? His detractors of course yell that he was megalomaniac. We can let them yell. Maybe he was, now and again, maybe he wasn’t, now and again. Is that a Big Deal? For one answer to the question, let’s quickly visit HCOB 9 June 1960, “The Basic Assumptions of Scientology Versus Overts.” It says, amongst other things:

"We find that the more we process successfully, the kinder and more ethical our people become."
"That a being, without aberration, would be good, ethical, artistic and powerful is still a basic assumption in Scientology."

In the bulletin, LRH is talking about Scn helping people to be in their own valences, to be who and what they really are, having rid themselves of false beingnesses, or valences, that they have been holding to themselves and indulging in for various irrational purposes. He is saying that when a being is who and what he really is, he is kind, good, ethical, artistic or creative, and powerful. He wanted this for every single human being who was interested in having it. He wanted, amongst other things:

"A civilization without insanity, without criminals and without war, where the able can prosper and honest beings can have rights, and where man is free to rise to greater heights: [these] are The Aims of Scientology."

personal observation[edit | edit source]

Please let me add one thing from my observation and participation in Scn for a good many years, something I feel is extremely important. During the later sixties, after the CC and the first OT levels were released, the emphasis throughout much of the organization became “OT.” We felt it was all about getting to OT, and getting more and more people to OT. Through the 70’s, and more so over the decades, much of the emphasis was on getting more and more people to pay more and more money, and one very tempting carrot put in front of the public was the notion of “OT.”

Now, I think that the OT Levels are very interesting, very valuable, and can be very important. But I think it’s now clear that they do NOT produce super-beings who can do funny things with MEST and have all-powerful postulates that work all the time, and who are the ideal of a spiritual alpha male. [As an aside here: I’m really glad that they haven’t produced such beings; God save us from unrestrained alpha males, OT or otherwise.]

My feeling is that it is time that we reverted to one of the original purposes that LRH gave the group – to get Scn out into our communities at the level at which our communities need and want the tools of Scn that can help them with their personal, family, and community issues. I believe that the c of s has what seems to be a strong Volunteer Minister program, but I don’t know how effective it is on the ground. I personally think that the most OT thing we can do for Planet Earth is to work very hard on the creation and nurturing of centres all over the world that will reach out to and deliver to and support the higher-toned members of communities who are trying to be part of the Solution for their families and friends and environment. There isn’t a single part of the world that can’t use these tools. There are many parts of the world crying out for these tools. Decades have gone by and I don’t see that the tools are much closer to their grasp. Do we not have here a body of wisdom that we could be applying more, and getting others to apply more, than we are?

1970 - 1972[edit | edit source]

Ron came to be as fully himself, in his own valence, as ever I saw him or as ever I could imagine a human to be, as far as I could tell from my direct observation of him on the ship on frequent occasions between 1970 and 1972. The truth of what I saw is to me indelible. If he could do it for himself, if he could it for others, if he could help others help others do it for themselves, he would, in due course bring about his aims of kind, good, ethical, artistic or creative, and powerful people and enough of them to help bring about a civilization without insanity, without criminals, and without war, where the able can prosper and honest beings can have rights, and where man is free to rise to greater heights. Do we need “OTs” or do we need to Get Scientology Working where it is most needed by the most people, and then Keep it Working?

One last point: In my opinion, the only way to Keep Scientology Working is to keep it working in our own hearts and according to our own deepest personal integrity as beings. If we look about us, and, as a result of what our eyes see and our minds figure out, our hearts clearly tell us we have work to do amongst the unhappy people of Earth, and if we know we have some effective tools -- let’s get on with it.

What are we waiting for? Are we waiting for that “OT” –and heartless -- corporation that claims the name of “The Church of Scientology” to get Scientology a good reputation?

Thank you very much for your attention!

Wishing you the best of good fortune.

Ken Urquhart

Articles[edit | edit source]