Official L. Ron Hubbard: Scientologist writings, My Philosophy Essay, Spiritual Leadership & Guidance

My Philosophy
by L. Ron Hubbard

Dating from January 1965, “My Philosophy,” has been described as the definitive
 L. Ron Hubbard statement on his philosophic stance.

The subject of philosophy is very ancient. The word means “the love, study or pursuit of wisdom, or of knowledge of things and their causes, whether theoretical or practical.”

All we know of science or of religion comes from philosophy. It lies behind and above all other knowledge we have or use.

For long regarded as a subject reserved for halls of learning and the intellectual, the subject to a remarkable degree has been denied the man in the street.

Surrounded by protective coatings of impenetrable scholarliness, philosophy has been reserved to the privileged few.

The first principle of my own philosophy is that wisdom is meant for anyone who wishes to reach for it. It is the servant of the commoner and king alike and should never be regarded with awe.

The first principle of my own philosophy is that wisdom is meant for anyone who wishes to reach for it.

Selfish scholars seldom forgive anyone who seeks to break down the walls of mystery and let the people in. Will Durant, the modern American philosopher, was relegated to the scrapheap by his fellow scholars when he wrote a popular book on the subject, The Story of Philosophy. Thus brickbats come the way of any who seek to bring wisdom to the people over the objections of the “inner circle.”

The second principle of my own philosophy is that it must be capable of being applied.

Learning locked in mildewed books is of little use to anyone and therefore of no value unless it can be used.

The third principle is that any philosophic knowledge is only valuable if it is true or if it works.

These three principles are so strange to the field of philosophy that I have given my philosophy a name: Scientology. This means only “knowing how to know.”

A philosophy can only be a route to knowledge. It cannot be knowledge crammed down one’s throat. If one has a route, he can then find what is true for him. And that is Scientology.

Know thyself—and the truth shall set you free.

Therefore, in Scientology we are not concerned with individual actions and differences. We are only concerned with how to show Man how he can set himself or herself free.

This, of course, is not very popular with those who depend upon the slavery of others for their living or power. But it happens to be the only way I have found that really improves an individual’s life.

Suppression and oppression are the basic causes of depression. If you relieve those, a person can lift his head, become well, become happy with life.

And though it may be unpopular with the slave master, it is very popular with the people. Common Man likes to be happy and well. He likes to be able to understand things. And he knows his route to freedom lies through knowledge.