Not being deterred by CofS attacks, the independent field continued to grow and flourish. Without the heavy ethics and high prices that existed in the CofS, independent Scientologists progressed quickly up their bridges. Over the ensuing two years after the independent field's inception, large numbers of people completed the entire bridge of services, including the upper levels.
Unlike in the CofS, people in the independent field were free to question the technology and the results that they were getting. Although most of these people were pleased to finally make it up the bridge and although they did get wins, they realized that they hadn't gotten what they had expected or what had been promised to them for so many years. Additionally, many people completing all processing levels still had unwanted conditions that had never been resolved. The difficulties mentioned above were not limited to the independent field. They also occurred in the CofS but were not voiced as openly, and when they were mentioned, they were handled in a manner to keep the person continuing on the bridge.
The CofS always had a great response to any concerns expressed about not achieving a desired result. If not sent to review or ethics, the complaining pc would be told, "That will be handled on up the bridge". If the person complaining had completed the entire bridge, a gimmick that I refer to as the "constant carrot" would serve to keep the individual's hopes alive. It went something like this: "There are at least 40 levels above OT 7 that have not yet been released. Only when there are enough full OT 7s will the next level be forthcoming. " I remember first hearing this from a Class 9 auditor named Rocky Stump at an event at ASHO in 1971. But anyone on the inside track of technical development with LRH knew that such a statement was not true.
LRH had nothing substantial developed after he had released the old OT levels. In the late 1970s when he came out with NOTS (New Era Dianetics for OTs), he soon replaced the old OT levels with new ones. Anyone working with Hubbard on tech lines after that period of time knew there were no levels researched beyond that point. But the CofS kept promoting that fully developed and unreleased levels did exist.
By 1985 there were a great number of people in and out of the CofS who had completed everything that Scientology had to offer on the bridge through OT 7 or Advanced Level 7. Independent delivery facilities openly communicated to their public that what they had finished was the extent of existing levels. Having completed all the existing bridge yet still having issues they wanted to handle and abilities they wanted to attain, many in the independent field started looking outside of standard Scientology tech for answers and results. The blind acceptance that LRH was the only source for mental and spiritual development began to fall away, and a shift in viewpoint occurred in the independent field.
Other methods and systems were explored, from other forms of therapy to channeling and eastern teachings. Some continued to use parts of the technology of Scientology while discarding other sections of the tech. New systems were developed that utilized a portion of Scientology tech in conjunction with other methodologies. The true believers who had left the CofS two years prior, were now looking in many different directions to achieve the results they desired.
The highly trained and more technically knowledgeable people in the independent field began researching the next step after OT 7 or Advanced Level 7. David Mayo came out with his version of Advanced Level 8, as the CofS came out with their OT 8. However, David's Advanced Level 8 was not too effective as a next step. According to people leaving the CofS after completing OT 8, this level produced mediocre results. But field research into the next step on the bridge continued.
Based on all available data, there were several valid directions of research explored in the effort to come up with the next level. At Survival Services, our research took a different path than the paths other independent researchers were taking. This unique research line was possible because of the knowledge and experience of John Galusha.