History of the IFA/APIS
Before it was called the Association of Professional Independent Scientologists (APIS) It was called The International Freezone Association or IFA, and was launched in June 2005. Actually the germ of the idea was started back before then in January 2004. I had spent 20 years out in the cold from a 10 year on stint on staff in the Sea Organisation. Having come to the conclusion that the Church was a failed entity after the demise of Ron Hubbard, I was stuck for many years wondering how I was going to continue up the bridge until I became aware of the Freezone through the internet in 2003-2004. It was a delight to see that there were so many working and battling to keep the technology alive. I looked around, found no auditors in the area I was residing and decided, "Michael, if you wait for it to happen it never will. You are going to have to take responsibility yourself and get something done." So I then started up the Australian freezone group, FANZA, In a part selfish move to get more auditors in Australia and in part an effort to bring together more people in this area who were dissatisfied with the church and see if we could get some auditing going and a real group set up.
Create a future
From there I expanded my horizons and, looking at the state of play in the Freezone and the deteriorating state of the Church, formed the conclusion that, unless something was put into place to safeguard the tech and coordinate all the various groups and individuals in the Freezone, it would also eventually dissipate as people got older and left. The technology, without an organised back up and support and just left in the hands of a few would, with the best will in the world, just fade away.
I decided I did not want just some auditors around. I wanted the technology to be there in the next 50 years or so for when I come back.
Then the seed of an idea started.
What was needed, I thought, was a clearly defined group that had, as its prime purpose, maintaining and preserving the technology and ensuring it continues to be used. Also needed was an organisational support structure that actively assisted individuals and groups without infringing their personal liberties or ending up on the same punishment and duress track the Church of Scientology (C of S) seemed determined to go down.
The Important issue here was the structure. How should it be constructed?
There were three possibilities I thought.
A church or religion.
A company or business organisation
An independent free association of peoples.
I rejected the church option. It has been demonstrated that it is open to misuse and vulnerable to possible attack. It would also be in direct competition with the C of S and could cause conflicts with individuals. Were they scientologists or not? In view of the C of S's current activities this is already a matter of confusion for some. Besides which, there was also the issue of restimulating past church experiences. No, too complicated. Need something simpler I thought.
A company or business organisation, although independent is also subject to possible attack. Any business organisation is subject to the laws of the country in which it is registered including the tax laws. In addition the C of S has made plain the frailty of having a business corporation in control of a church. A company or corporation can be subject to take overs and other unsavoury activities. It also suffers limitations on what it can do and is generally money motivated. That was out.
That left an Association.
Advantages of an association
An Association, while not the most optimum solution perhaps, certainly seemed the best one I thought. It did have the advantage of being workable and if there was anything LRH said it was that something should be workable.
It is non profit making.
It is not subject to take overs or the problems besetting corporations.
It is not subject to tax or the tax implications are minimal (if registered in the right country).
There are no religious complications to undergo and attacks, if it was done right, would be minimal. An association does not have the same difficulties as a religion does.
It has guidelines on how to act or comport oneself.
It would not restimulate past experiences within this field yet can provide similar support and some of the facilities needed by people with a common agreement.
It is essentially based on an idea or purpose so has a higher motivation level.
For the price of a nominal membership fee, associations can traditionally offer various facilities at reduced costs for members since there is no driving urge to create a profit but simply to invest its proceeds in itself and it's members and expand on its ideals.
An association is a co-operation between people who agree on the principles of the association. It can also provide the sort of umbrella protection and support needed without to many demands upon its members and can carry forward the purposes for which it is constructed.
In short, an association would be close to ideal. People belong on their own determinism and the association is effective to the degree that its members participate, use and continue to support it.
In addition it is simplicity itself to set up. Which suited me very well. If something is simple there is a good chance I can do it
Getting to work
So I set about constructing the International Freezone Association (IFA) which later was changed to the Association of Professional Indepentent Scientologists or APIS for short
The backbone of APIS is the Constitution. This lays out the ground rules. The boundaries in the game if you like. Here is delineated what the association and its members can and cannot do. This document protects APIS, it strengthens it and binds it together. It is the agreement upon which APIS is constructed. It is important to note that, although I set up and put in place the constitution document, many other experienced individuals in the Freezone gave much of their time with some valuable contributions and vital assistance, helping with the fine tuning, discovering loop holes and working on ways to close them. It is doubtful that the constitution would be as robust as it is today or APIS would be as workable and effective as it is without those contributions.
APIS has a number of purposes outlined. These purposes indicate the direction APIS is travelling.
The 3 Prime Purposes are:
Preserve the exact technology and original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard for future use so it is available for all mankind.
Protect the exact technology and original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard so it is not altered, diluted or changed in anyway but remains exactly as Lafayette Ron Hubbard issued it.
Promote the exact technology and original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard so it may be known by all mankind.
Preserving the technology is vital. Ron Hubbard spent the best part of his life discovering, developing and laying out the technology to free beings and to lose it out of a sense of complacency would be the height of stupidity. First one must put the technology there. This might be called the be part of the IFA.
Protecting the technology to ensures it is not changed or altered in anyway is vital. Actively working on monitoring the duplication, understanding and application of the technology is a very important part of the IFA. The more the technology is changed or altered the less effective it becomes. It is important that we keep this in mind for future generations (when we return!) This might be called the doing part.
And Data is only as useful as it is applied. For any one of us to be free it a truism that we all need to be free. This means promotion of the technology. Keeping it in a Vault 'so it is safe' does not promote the technology. Spreading it far and wide does. This would be the havingness part.
Further sub purposes were also included to lend support to the above purposes and they are as follows:
Foster, promote and develop fellowship and mutual aid among APIS members within the framework of the constitution.
Establish communication and understanding among the members of APIS and members of other communities.
Promote and sponsor educational activities that alert and teach the general public about the exact technology and original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard.
Defend APIS from any attempt to inhibit it's existence and expansion from any quarter.
Assist in the defense of any of it's members in the event of any unwarranted legal process to the detriment of the member on the basis of the member(s) exercising their legal religious right to practice the technology and original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard.
These three prime purposes then formed the motto of APIS
Preserve, Protect & Promote
Pursuing and working on achieving these three purposes will ensure that that the technology is available for future generations. I am a selfish person. I want to ensure that in 50 years time the technology will still be here and not lost in a welter of dimly remembered thoughts and alterised technology to the point of unrecognisability.
Having set that up the next step was to bore down in more detail and work on the actual steps necessary to ensure the purposes were carried out. This is an ongoing process and is mainly carried out with Projects.
These projects have been set up to forward the purpose lines with projects ICs working exclusively on these areas. They are:
The Tech Research Project. This enhances and fits in with preserving the tech Purpose and work here is being done to ensure the technology is being preserved for all time.
The Great Training Project. Training is the key to the future. It is the key to protecting the technology as the more people that know understand and apply the technology the less chance there is of it being lost. Great emphasis is made on training people on the technology as part of this purpose.
The Link & Website Project. This can best be described as Promote! This is getting the Freezone well known and thought of. It is getting the products out to the people. Producing more web sites and links so that the freezone presence on the net is increased. Getting the Freezone out of non existence on this planet so people can find out that all is not lost and there is an alternative
In addition, on the web site, one can find additional tools and facilities for members and non members alike.
The APIS web site http://independent-scientologists-association.net is not simply a showcase for the independent field. It is a place one can go to find useful facilities and tools to assist one in the playing of the game and in forwarding the purposes of preserving, protecting and promoting the priceless technology we have. Here is a list of some:
A list of Auditors and groups that deliver the technology. These are members who are qualified auditors. There are various grades and levels.
A list of services relating to correction including:
Video Critiques by a Class XII,
An Org Board that shows the expansion of APIS over the years.
Links to sources of Ron's technology
A Dispute Resolution Process set up
Many success stories
An extensive links page to the independent world
Special tributes to Ron and Mary Sue
And many other useful tools such as a currency converter, Web creation tools, web security information, word lister and much more. Other services are envisaged in the not too distant future.
There is also a monthly newsletter free to the public. We also have the journal of APIS, the Free Theta for members which contains fascinating articles by past and current highly trained C/S's and Auditors as well as information by LRH.
All this goes to enhance the three prime purposes and to forward the expansion of the freezone in general.
Ron said that a psychotic lives in the past, a neurotic lives in the present and a sane man lives in the future.
The future of Scientology, and Ron's workable technology and applied philosophy lie in the independent field. For the many many groups, organisations and individuals who are working with their head down and bottom up, and pressing ahead with auditing, training and generally keeping Scientology alive and well. They need support. They need to have somewhere to go where they know that Ron's Technology is being applied and is available. They need predictability. They need to know that for generations to come, the work will still be there and people will still have the opportunity of going free
APIS is a part of that. It is not just a web site or another group sticking its head up. It is here for the duration. It is the vanguard. It is the future. Come and join us!
Association of Professional Independent Scientologists