In psychology, there is the term, “defense mechanism”:
“Any of various usually unconscious mental processes, including denial, projection, rationalization, and repression, that protect the ego from shame, anxiety, conflict, loss of self-esteem, or other unacceptable feelings or thoughts.”
In Scientology terms, “service facsimile”:
“ ‘Service’ because they serve him. ‘Facsimiles’ because they are in mental image picture form. They explain his disabilities as well. The facsimile part is actually a self-installed disability that ‘explains’ how he is not responsible for not being able to cope. So he is not wrong for not coping. Part of the ‘package’ is to be right by making wrong.”
Doubtless this mental mechanism has been recognized in many other terms as well through the ages, perhaps most simply as “stubborn attitudes”, which is as good a way of saying it as any, in terms of being the most universally recognizable attribute of this type of frequently repeated automatic responding to various things a person encounters.
It can be frustrating and exhausting to encounter these “stubborn attitudes” in other people, in which case it is so much more obvious how illogical, and how constricting these mental roadblocks are. What we have great difficulty realizing is how heavily stocked most, if not all of us are with these mentally and spiritually crippling mechanisms.
Scientology, psychology, and I’m sure, other therapeutic methodologies have developed means intended to cure or resolve these. The basic technique is to prod the person to recognize, and consciously and rationally examine and re-evaluate the particular attitude.
From the vantage point of having trained in the Scientology approach and in further developments as well as years of practical experience addressing and processing these, I’ve learned, discovered, and realized a few things that opened the door to a much greater level of understanding, and thereby, substantially improved means of detecting and deconstructing one’s stubbornly held protective attitudes:
(1) When to address the person’s stubbornly held protective attitudes:
In Scientology, these are addressed once the client, through a standard and uniform series of steps, “arrives at the level” for addressing their “service facsimiles”, at which point they undergo a procedure termed “listing and nulling”, in which they are asked to give all the answers they have to one of the formularized standard questions asking for these, and through that procedure, those answers are then narrowed down to one single answer, at which point the client’s “item” is then processed by the standard Scientology “service facsimile handling” process, or technique.
While this approach is not without some success, perhaps its most basic flaw can be understood by relating it to the most important processing guideline:
The client is best served by addressing what is manifesting for them in the moment, right now, as their “spiritual compass” is presenting it to be addressed.
While anything discovered through a processing technique can be a fascinating discovery, and provide a pinch of momentary euphoria in being processed,
That material that is immediately relevant, that the client is experiencing and expressing HERE AND NOW is the material that, when successfully addressed and resolved, will have THE MOST BENEFICIAL LIFE IMPACT- and that is what processing sessions are (or certainly should be) all about. The client’s stubbornly held crippling attitudes emerge naturally, in response to the things they most need and want to resolve, and so you are best served by “striking while the iron is hot”- and if you ask any of my clients about it, the processing of those stubbornly held crippling attitudes in this way has always turned out to be a very “hot” process.
Scientology actually does recognize this concept, or at least, it did in earlier times, as “paralleling the mind”, but then, in my view, that principle was largely washed away in the formulating of a uniformly sequenced “bridge”, or set of “levels” of processes which is uniformly set for every individual. One’s stubbornly held protective attitudes, or “service facsimiles”, are going to manifest frequently, but they’re not going to be addressed until they “have arrived at grade four”, which supposedly culminates with the processing of the person’s “core service facsimile”, at which point it is believed that one is now free of such mechanisms- which simply doesn’t happen; in my practice, these mechanisms routinely reveal themselves, including in those clients who have experienced Scientology’s “grade four”, and beyond.
(2) Understanding the specific composition, function and mechanics of a Stubbornly Held Protective Attitude:
First, there is the most visible, surface characteristic that identifies this attitude:
It imposes an energy that deflects, and closes the door on connecting with and permeating something. It is a resistance to something, expressed essentially as:
“This is all I need to know about that”
Think of it as the sound of an automatic garage door closing; an apparently impenetrable resistance, a firm
“We are not going there.”
It is generally attached to an automatic knee-jerk “solution” action, and it is not too hard to tell that in this moment, the being is not really present; they are substituting a rigid attitude in place of their presence.
Just behind this thought-energy shield that is being presented, the being is experiencing a state of anxiety and/or utter confusion, so intense at times that it is palpable. They can’t “go there”; they don’t dare, because something about that subject is related to something in that person’s mind that for them is dangerous and overwhelming.
In fact, the very energy that powers the resistance in that Stubbornly Held Crippling Attitude is the energy of some dangerous and overwhelming experience(s) involving that subject which is now being resisted through that attitude. The recognition of this being the very substance of that attitude is a very important breakthrough, which opens up new possibilities in thoroughly and effectively deconstructing the particularly daunting spiritual architecture of the Stubbornly Held Protective Attitude.
As explained earlier, “The basic technique is to prod the person to recognize, and consciously and rationally examine and re-evaluate the particular attitude”. By asking questions that bring this about, for example, “How does (the particular articulated attitude) help you to avoid what you don’t want to have to experience?”, bits and pieces of the energy holding that wall of resistance in place bleed out as expressions of the “charge” of the underlying prior overwhelming experience(s), which then allows the auditor/counselor to shift gears to parallel the client’s mind and directly address and process the energies of that experience. The apparent “solid wall” is successfully being dis-integrated.
Scientology’s original, “standard” methodology for addressing “service facsimiles” did not even recognize this actual composition, and so never directly addressed it. As you will understand here, processing the attitude while failing to recognize, address and resolve the underlying material of the attitude can expose the being to the full force of the underlying experiences, rendering them more unstable than when they had their “shield” in place, and also thereby can result in their simply adopting another, likely similarly articulated attitude in its place to fend off what they can’t experience without the appropriate processing.
And beyond even that, there is the more basic level to all such negatively “charged” spiritual architectures, which is:
All negatively charged material is manifested as a form of opposition to a being’s natural, drive in the direction of a positive aspiration. The “negative charge” derives all of its energy from that of the underlying positive aspiration. (You could consider this “positive charge”, “spiritual energy”, “theta”, “life energy”, etc). All negatively charged spiritual constructs are in fact composed of the energy of one’s positive drive, turned back against itself, and thus converted to the negative.
And therefore, the deconstructing and full processing of any such Stubbornly Held Protective Attitude must involve the complete processing of the underlying negatively charged material, and then, the positive processing, i.e., rehabilitation of the foundation of one’s positive aspiration. In fact, all negative gain processing cycles should be completed with that positive step.
Here’s a brand new discovery: To enhance the full effective processing of the Stubbornly Held Protective Attitude (SHPA), here is the other key processing question:
“What is the emotion of (the SHPA)?” This opens the mechanism up and allows the force to pour out of it. The SHPA is, essentially, an attitude, and an attitude is an idea powered by the carrier wave of emotion. Ask that question, and watch the charge fly off, deflating the mechanism. Very useful.
All of these factors are built into the Stubbornly Held Protective Attitude processing technique I’ve developed and make use of very frequently in ongoing processing. I’m happy to be available to avail all of the benefits of this technique.