There will be the occasional individual who tries to make your life miserable.
If you are in good shape, you simply handle the person and / or the situation that they are creating. Sometimes you can win enemies over or you drive them off or you just hold your own and they drop the matter eventually.
But sometimes it happens that a person is overwhelmed by an attacker, whether the attack is overt or covert. In that case your best course is often to retreat and gather your resources in a safe position away from the overwhelming influence. This is not meant to encourage running away, in the long run you will have to face up to things. But sometimes it is the appropriate solution in the short term so that you can catch your breath so to speak.
The reasons for attack can be many. There are some people who want to enslave and dominate everybody. And there are some who are stuck in old incidents that make them feel that everybody is an enemy. But mostly it is just vested interests and people who see themselves as being in competition with others in a dog eat dog world.
Overt attacks are visible and you probably already have some skill at handling these.
But covert attacks are not so obvious. They consist of efforts to dominate and control and invalidate in a subtle manner and are often done with a smile and a knife in the back.
Your sharpest indication of this is that when you begin to do better at something, the covert attacker will work to try and bring you down. This person is said to be “suppressive” to you because they are attempting to suppress your advancement and gains in abilities.
You will find that such a person works to invalidate you and make less of you, to stop you and undermine your confidence, and to make you feel depressed and disheartened. At the same time, you will often find that they try to keep you under their control and make you dependent on them.
Unfortunately, we are in a world of competition and domination. People do sometimes see it as their right to control you and will begin undermining you if they see you moving out from under their thumb.
Some parents do this when their children seem to be growing up too fast and becoming too independent.
Some bosses or employers do this when it seems that a junior is advancing too fast and may become competitive with them.
These are cases where someone may begin acting suppressively towards you even when they do not act that way in general. Sometimes it is simply fear of loosing somebody that they are dependent on.
Your best solution is simply to be in good enough shape that they cannot invalidate or hold you back and to have enough skill at things such as communication to handle the situation.
Your last resort is to retreat, just as you would from an overt attacker. This leaves behind something that will have to be faced later, but it is better than getting continually trampled into the ground.
The intermediate course is to struggle to hold your own, and to work to raise your confront and ability to handle a person who is currently suppressing you.
And this chapter has some processes to help you do that.
Note that orthodox Scientology currently has a bit of a fanatical attitude on the subject of suppression and “suppressive persons” (SPs). You can ignore this and operate on the practical basis of observing whether or not somebody is actively working to suppress you (hold you down).
And remember that many fights come about simply because of wrong data or misunderstood intentions or unjustified prejudices and these things can be dissolved by means of good communication.
Everybody occasionally runs into somebody who does not have their best interests at heart, so we’ll begin with some general processes that are helpful even if you are not currently having any trouble with somebody who is trying to suppress your progress.
Stopping somebody is not always done out of bad intentions (there are runaway trains), but it is not uncommon.
a) spot a time when somebody stopped you
b) spot a time when you stopped somebody else
c) spot a time when somebody else stopped another or others
d) spot a time when you stopped yourself
There is constructive criticism, but it generally includes a great deal of positive encouragement along with the criticism. And much criticism stems from simple upsets which we addressed in an earlier chapter. But sometimes it is ill intentioned.
a) spot a time when somebody criticized you
b) spot a time when you criticized somebody else
c) spot a time when somebody else criticized another or others
d) spot a time when you criticized yourself
24.3 Making Nothing
A good way to hold somebody down is to make nothing out of all of their efforts.
a) spot a time when somebody made nothing of you
b) spot a time when you made nothing of somebody else
c) spot a time when somebody else made nothing of another or others
d) spot a time when you made nothing of yourself
Now lets see if anybody is suppressing you.
There also might be someone who was very suppressive to you as you were growing up and who is still exerting some influence on you even though they are no longer around.
Write down answers to the following questions, putting down multiple answers if it seems appropriate, until you feel that you have answered each question fully.
a) Is there anybody around whom you seem to get sick or become sick shortly after seeing them?
b) Is there anybody who is continually criticizing you?
c) Is there anybody who keeps telling you how bad other people are?
d) Is there anybody who is continually stopping you?
e) Is there anybody who is continually invalidating you?
f) Is there anybody who continually provides false information?
g) Is there anybody who makes nothing of your efforts?
If the same name cropped up on a number of these lists, then you should run the following processes fitting the person found into the commands.
If there is more than one name that came up on 3 or more lists, then run each one in turn on the full set of processes given below.
Note that you do not have to make an adjudication at this point as to whether or not the person is really suppressive towards you.
The fact of their coming up on a number of the above lists means that there is enough charge present to make it worthwhile to run the processes. One can sometimes get into bad situations or games with people who are otherwise well intentioned. It is valuable to handle any suppression that occurred in any case.
You might consider it odd to consider helping somebody who has been suppressing you, but it really does help blow out the barriers of hatred and raise your confront on the person.
The end result is not necessarily that you will now help the person, we are only restoring free choice here, but you certainly should find them easier to confront.
a) How could you help ____
b) How could ____ help you
c) How could ____ help others
d) How could others help ____
a) What problem has ___ been to you
b) What have you done about that
c) What problem have you been to ___
d) What have they done about that
e) What problem has ___ been to others
f) What have others done about that
g) What problem have others been to ___
h) What have they done about that
a) What haven’t you said to ___
b) What hasn’t ___ said to you
c) What hasn’t ___ said to others
a) What have you done to ____
b) What has ____ done to you
c) What have others done to ____
d) What has ____ done to others
a) How has ____ invalidated you
b) How have you invalidated ____
c) How has ____ invalidated others
d) How have others invalidated ____
Each of these 3 processes has 6 alternating commands. Run it just like other recall type processes, except that sometimes you might not have anything to recall on the command.
a) is there a time when you rejected their affinity
b) is there a time when they rejected your affinity
c) is there a time when you insisted that they like you
d) is there a time when they insisted that you like them
e) is there a time when you did like them
f) is there a time when they did like you
a) is there a time when you rejected their communication
b) is there a time when they rejected your communication
c) is there a time when you insisted that they listen to you
d) is there a time when they insisted that you listen to them
e) is there a time when you were in good communication with them
f) is there a time when they were in good communication with you
a) is there a time when you refused to agree with them
b) is there a time when they refused to agree with you
c) is there a time when you insisted that they agree with you
d) is there a time when they insisted that you agree with them
e) is there a time when you did agree with them
f) is there a time when they did agree with you
You can also use the handling for upsets (ARC Breaks) that was given in an earlier chapter.
a) where would ____ be safe
b) where could you put ___ so that you would be safe
a) What could you confront about ____
b) What action of ____ could you be responsible for
c) What about ____ could you be at cause over
Mockup or write down imaginary scenes in which you successfully handle ____, working out ways of dealing with whatever difficulties might arise.
Steps 24.5 to 24.12 above should help you to confront and handle the person so that they are no longer suppressive to your doing better in life.
If you still can’t handle them and they are seriously pushing you down, then you probably should back off and retreat, moving out from under the suppressive influence, at least until you can build up some more horsepower.
But if you do back off in this manner, be very careful not to blame the “suppressive” influence for the condition that you are in. This is deadly because it is handing off control to an external agency that seems to be hostile to you.
In actual truth, the cause and effect points are in a constant state of flux and other people can help or hinder you. But these can be shifted by an act of will, and you need to take the causative viewpoint to be able to change things to your liking. If you take the effect viewpoint for the sake of being able to blame somebody else, you tend to trap yourself.
It is nice to take the effect viewpoint in a helpful relationship. It is pure masochism to accept the effect viewpoint in a harmful relationship.
If you continue to have difficulties with the person or just for the sake of learning more on a second pass through the book, you can also look for earlier lives in which you knew the same being and run some or all of the above processes on that time period.
24.15 A Note on Orthodox Misbehavior
Orthodox Scientology has gone through a period of “witch hunts” and declarations of various individuals as “Suppressive Persons”.
This has been used as a means to blame external sources for things which are wrong. As noted above, this is deadly as it hands responsibility over to the external source.
There will be situations where an organization may need to lable somebody as persona non grata and keep them away from the organization because they are liable to burn it down or something like that.
This has nothing to do with the fact of individual suppression or the lack thereof. Do not confuse these two things.
And do not trust any organization which is continually looking for scapegoats. A sane organization will occasionally find a troublemaker and take some action to handle the situation, but they do not sit around and continually blame the state of the organization on these people.