OT VIII (Operating Thetan Level 8) is the highest current auditing level in Scientology. OT VIII is known as "The Truth Revealed" and was first released to select high-ranking public Scientologists in 1988,[1][2] two years after the death of Scientology's founder, L. Ron Hubbard. OT VIII is only delivered to members of the Church of Scientology in one place—aboard the organization's private cruise ship, the Freewinds. OT8 is also available in the Scientology Independent Field. There are a few advanced auditors that are able to deliver the level to those who meet the prerequisites.[2]

"This Solo-audited level addresses the primary cause of amnesia on the whole track and lets one see the truth of his own existence. This is the first actual OT level and brings about a resurgence of power and native abilities for the being himself. The CoS does not currently deliver LRH's OT 8 but an eclipsed version of one part."[3]

Various outlines purporting to describe New OT VIII have been provided by ex-members who have completed the course, such as Ariane Jackson and Michael Pattinson. Jackson has described the course as having two parts: a preparatory e-meter drill, followed by a review of Scientology: A History of Man and an examination of previously identified past lives to find out which ones are false. According to Pattinson, the course included an affirmation from L. Ron Hubbard that "now he [Pattinson] knew who he wasn't, and was interested in finding out who he was."[4]


"Original" version submitted in Fishman affidavitEdit

In a posthumous prophecy that has been withheld intentionally until after death, Hubbard claims that 80 million years ago a group of aliens that exist outside spacetime have a plan to takeover the universe by activating an inserted genetic implant that will allow for the enslavement of the universe via telepathic mind control. The implant will be activated during the return of the galactic confederacy which is "rapidly approaching". All World Religions, except for "Original Buddhism", are participating in a conspiracy with the Aliens to telepathically enslave the universe. Hubbard claims the Second Coming in the Book of Revelation is referring to this event and identifies himself with the "Antichrist" and his life with the "brief anti-Christ period" it mentions and wrote the "anti-Christ represents the forces of Lucifer" which are "the forces of enlightenment". Hubbard then describes the Historical Jesus as being a homosexual and a pedophile and wrote he was "a lover of young boys and men" and claims the saintly figure portrayed in the Gospels are due to the implant mentioned above. Hubbard then writes "I will return not as a religious leader but a political one with another Identity in a body free of religious mania, right/wrong dichotomy and synthetic karma" and then "halt a series of events designed to make happy slaves of us all." Hubbard warns that anybody who tries to complete this auditing level without being prepared may "spontaneously combust".[5][6][7][8]

Forgery allegations and admission of authenticityEdit

The Church of Scientology initially verified authenticity of the document when they sued Steven Fishman for Copyright infringement of the OT VIII materials. Since infringement only exists if the document is authentic, they unintentionally established authenticity with their lawsuit against Fishman.[9] They dropped the suit afterwards and claimed they were forgeries and unsuccessfully tried to prevent others from seeing the publicly available court documents but they were eventually posted to the internet by scientology critic Arnie Lerma in August 1995. Church of Scientology lawyers asserted again that the Fishman OT VIII documents posted by Lerma are forgeries yet they sued to have them taken down and during the copyright battle over Lerma's web pages, the Church of Scientology's attorney Kendrick Moxon identified the "Antichrist" document as copyrighted material establishing their authenticity.[2][10] George White, a public Scientologist who had received OT VIII in the summer of 1988, also asserts the document is authentic (and states that the course cost him US$28,000 at the time).[2] Frank Oliver, a former operative with Scientology's Office of Special Affairs, reports having discovered the document in the church's archives.[2] Lawrence Wollersheim, a notable defector, claims they are genuine: "Two sets of defectors, at different times in different parts of the world, came out with those documents", he says. "I've been working with defectors for fifteen years. I have never dealt with anyone as afraid of having their identity revealed as the people who came out and verified those documents."[11]

Current version used by the churchEdit

On March 24, 2008, WikiLeaks obtained and placed the complete set of Operating Thetan Levels on their site, including the current "revised" version of OT VIII not previously publicly available.[12] The Church of Scientology again verified the authenticity of these documents when they threatened legal action for copyright infringement if they are not removed. WikiLeaks refused thus making all 612 pages of the OT materials that many scientologists spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to see through the church available for free on Wikileaks.[12][13]

Revisions made by the churchEdit

Jesse Prince, former second-in-command of Scientology's Religious Technology Center, wrote that OTVIII was revised after early participants were "horribly upset" by the content.[14][2] The OT VIII section has two parts: "original" and "new". The original section is identical to the Fishman version while the subsequent "New" section is completely redacted and virtually unrecognizable when compared to the original that Fishman produced.[12]

The revised version is dated 1991, which is three years after the initial roll out of OT VIII and states "It is not the original nor is it a perfect record" and claims "any differences are extremely minor (if at all). The author writes "What is presented here are reconstructions of those materials by people who have trained and delivered them before leaving that organization. If the original materials should become available at a future date, a revision of this volume will done to include them." The document also includes a legal disclaimer that reads "In the absence of the original materials, the following are presented on an "as is" basis and are used at your own discretion. No warranty is conferred or implied".[12]

The author of the revised edition does not identify themselves but since it was written five years after his death, the current edition of OT VIII could not have been authored by L. Ron Hubbard.[15]

The author states that the purpose of this auditing level is to learn the secret of the relationship between "the Supreme Being" and the Thetan. Both are infinite but the thetan is unable to perceive its infinite identify due to confusions and distortions caused by the MEST. The purpose of this OT level is to remove those impediments and thus know your identity from origin to infinity. The author states that anyone who is not "flat" on the previous OT levels should continue to retake them (presumably at full price) until they are. The author also states that this information is to remain confidential from "squirrels" or scientologists not in the church.

Similarities with science fiction apocalyptical genreEdit

In a 1968 lecture, Hubbard acknowledged similarities between his teachings and the Sci-Fi sub-genre Space Opera. Said Hubbard: "This planet is part of an earlier federation and passed out of its control due to losses in war and other such things. Now, this larger confederacy, this isn’t its right name, but we have often called it and referred to it in the past as the Marcab Confederacy. And it has been wrongly or rightly pointed to as one of the tail stars of the Big Dipper, which is the capital planet of which this planet is. Now, all this sounds very Space Opera-ish and that sort of thing, and I’m sorry for it, but I am not one to quibble about the truth. "[16]

The Church of Scientology has denied claims that their religion is based on science fiction.[17][18][19] However, with the release of OT VIII all three cardinal Incidents of the churches esoteric scripture have elements found in science fiction literature which church founder L. Ron Hubbard was familiar with as a science fiction writer.[20][21] Scientology's Creation myth (Incident I), Origin of man myth (Incident II), and their Doomsday Prophesy (Incident III), share the key distinction from other religions in that instead of divine intervention, there is alien intervention.[22] Hubbard's Incident III was clearly modelled on the Book of Revelation which he references in the Original OT VIII version - the prophet's discovery of these events are a revelation, there is a sense of urgency that the apocalypse will be soon, the savior dies first, then the calamity begins, then the savior returns to stop it. The alien civilizations that Hubbard describes resemble modern human civilization but possess advanced technology that enables them to perform supernatural feats such as telepathy.[23] This is a common motif in science fiction and was popularized by the Star Trek franchise which was in syndication at the time.[24][25]


  1. ^ Rathbun, Mark C. (16 March 2011). "Truth Revealed about OT VIII".
  2. ^ a b c d e f Ortega, Tony (24 June 2014). "UP THE BRIDGE: We finally reach 'OT 8' — but was its first version really a hoax?". tonyortega.org. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  3. ^ Church of Scientology International. "Classification, Gradation and Awareness Chart". Retrieved 2008-03-22.
  4. ^ Pattinson v. Church of Scientology et al., US District Court for the Central District of California, 1998
  5. ^ "Fishman Exhibit: OT VIII, Part 2". www.cs.cmu.edu. Retrieved 2021-04-17.
  6. ^ "Fishman Exhibit: OT VIII, Part 2". cs.cmu.edu. US District Court, Central District of California Fishman Case No 91-6426 HLH (Tx). Retrieved 1 August 2016. By the time you read this I will no longer be occupying the body and identity that you have known as Ron.
  7. ^ "Fishman Exhibit: OT VIII, Part 2". cs.cmu.edu. US District Court, Central District of California Fishman Case No 91-6426 HLH (Tx). Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  8. ^ "What Christians Need to Know about Scientology".
  9. ^ "Church of Scientology International v. Fishman and Geertz". www.cs.cmu.edu. Retrieved 2021-04-17.
  10. ^ "Scientology vs. the mayor: The full Gabe Cazares interview from 1997's Secret Lives "The Underground Bunker"".
  11. ^ Prendergast, Alan (1995-10-04). "Stalking the Net". Denver Westword News. Village Voice Media. Retrieved 2011-08-10.
  12. ^ a b c d "Church of Scientology collected Operating Thetan documents – WikiLeaks".
  13. ^ Metz, Cade (2008-04-08). "Scientology threatens Wikileaks with injunction". The Register. Retrieved 2008-04-10.
  14. ^ xenu-directory.net
  15. ^ (PDF) https://file.wikileaks.org/file/scientology-ot-levels.pdf. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ https://tonyortega.org/source-code-actual-things-l-ron-hubbard-said-on-this-date-in-history/
  17. ^ "Cruise Sees No Scientology in 'War of the Worlds'". ABC News. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  18. ^ Yahr, Emily. "How Scientology controls John Travolta and Tom Cruise, according to 'Going Clear'". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  19. ^ Mahjouri, Shakiel (2018-01-06). "'Star Trek' Actress Kirstie Alley Slams Journalist Over Scientology: 'Go On With Your Hateful Self'". ET Canada. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  20. ^ "Scientology and Science Fiction". Wall Street Journal. 1997-05-01. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  21. ^ Whitney, Harvey AK (May 1995). "Is Scientology Science Fiction?". Journal of Pharmacy Technology. 11 (3): 89–122. doi:10.1177/875512259501100301. ISSN 8755-1225.
  22. ^ Shermer, Michael (22 April 2021). [The Real Science behind Scientology "The Real Science behind Scientology"] Check |url= value (help). Scientific America.
  23. ^ "Why Do Scientologists Accept the Xenu Story?". The Village Voice. 2012-07-21. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  24. ^ "Xenu's Paradox: The Fiction of L. Ron Hubbard and the Making of Scientology". Longreads. 2017-02-01. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  25. ^ "The Road to Xenu, Chapter 8: "Star Trek for Real"". www.cs.cmu.edu. Retrieved 2021-04-23.

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