The States of Existence
by L. Ron Hubbard


This state has often been described in Dianetics and Scientology. It has always been understated.

Release, for years, was mistaken for Clear and was even called Clear. But time has revealed that Clear was far above anything one had dreamed of previously.

Grade VII is not a Release Grade. It is a Clear.

Operating Thetan

This term, “Operating Thetan,” has meaning mainly to old-time Scientologists.

By “operating” is meant “able to act and handle things” and by “thetan” is meant the spiritual being that is the basic self. “Theta” is Greek for thought or life or the spirit. An Operating Thetan then is one who can handle things without having to use a body of physical means. “Poltergeist” is a learned term for only one of the phenomena of this state. Basically one is oneself, can handle things and exist without physical support and assistance. This state is really just “OT” but is numbered Grade VIII for convenience. It doesn’t mean one becomes God. It means one becomes wholly oneself.


Since 1952 we have been able to make man into a spiritual being in a few seconds.

It was startling. It was also unstable. A minute, a day or weeks later the person would become man again and the experience was often remembered dimly.

Recently we solved why this was so. It is fatal to overrun the processes of a Grade once that grade has been obtained. One can be audited on the processes of a new grade one has not attained. But not on the same grade one had already reached. Overauditing — auditing beyond a Grade of Release attained — is very upsetting to a person. He often does not really know why he got upset. He got better, then got worse again.

The same thing happened with the “Thetan Exterior” processes. We made a person exteriorize and then overaudited him by a few more commands. Or the person tried to audit himself into further “exteriorization.”

This state, however, is not a different state of existence. It occurs along with many of the higher Release Grades as a natural condition. And it is, of course, only a foreshadow of Operating Thetan.

Thus, there are nine definite states of existence above that of Homo sapiens and there are some intermediate states such as Grade VII A on the chart.

It is hard for man to grasp even that these states exist. He has no literature about them really or any vocabulary for them.

But they do exist.

Reach for them and you’ll see.

Once one starts going up there is no wish to stop. The whiff of freedom and the total reality of it after all this time is too strong.

L. Ron Hubbard-Founder

Other Articles by L. Ron Hubbard

The Discoveries of Dianetics

Scientology Answers