When you think of Scientology in South Africa and its history here you think of certain people that have become synonymous with the subject.
Gaye & Ernest Corbett are two of those names. Going back about 40 years they have always been a part of the community and contributing. Ernest has been a popular speaker on OT, Admin Scale & Admin tech. You couldn’t find two people more supportive of people, Scientologists and their local church of Scientology.
They have trained, they have travelled the length of the Bridge as it is available in Scientology today. They have been in the trenches and fought with the best of us. Not that they are without their faults, of course not. But no one can be in any doubt that they contributed to Scientology and they contributed to LRH.
They have always been fine examples of what a Scientologist should be. They have also been tremendously successful in their personal lives.
I lay out the above because it is important to understand or at least have a glimpse of who these people are to understand the staggering actions of the church and its loyal servants.
For reasons that Gaye & Ernest have not yet made public it would seem they have chosen to no longer support the church and the direction it has taken in recent years. This is no surprise, many many others have done the same.
There has been no official issue distributed about Gaye & Ernest, no indication in writing that they are in bad standing. Yet there are on-going covert actions to discredit them. There have been at least 2 invitation-only briefings given by senior Sea Org members about them.
Instead of taking direct action they have chosen to let individual Scientologists spread rumours to discredit them. Once they have been thoroughly discredited through this process it may not be such a shock to Scientologists when & if they are finally declared.
Loyal Scientologists, who I’m sure believe they are doing the right thing for “their religion” have spread rumour with vigour. To my knowledge none of the leading names of Scientology management in South Africa have made any attempt to talk to Ernest & Gaye in person. Not Ken Krieger, not Alex Faust, David Lipsitz, Elmien Lochner, Peach Bokelmann. None of them. But all have been quite happy to spread rumours and start a whispering campaign, effectively “fair gaming” them. These rumours include:
- Gaye & Ernest have not really done anything (or done very little) for Scientology. They have never supported Ideal Orgs.
- They attended the wedding of a Scientologist in Durban and were recruiting people for a squirrel group.
- That they put their fingers in electric sockets to exteriorize
- That Gaye & Ernest are being suppressive and their kids are just PTS.
All of these are patently ridiculous but we Scientologists have been conditioned to just accept such statements even when we inwardly disagree.
We can speculate about why there has been no official issue published but I believe that chief among them is their son, Mark Corbett. He has been the single biggest contributor to Ideal Orgs by some distance. Exact figures are hard to know but he has contributed many many millions. That’s a lot of money. This makes Mark the biggest whale of them all locally. There must be some desperation to hang onto him and it would therefore not make good financial sense to declare his parents.
Another reason is probably the money contribution of Gaye & Ernest themselves. 4 years ago Peter Cooke pledged R5.5 million to ideal orgs and on the strength of this a deposit on a building was made. His cheque bounced. At the desperate request of Alex Faust, Gaye & Ernest put up a guarantee for this amount so the church would not lose the building and the rest of the money they had paid since the bounced cheque would put them in default. Alex Faust promised they wouldn’t have to pay this guarantee but, if they did, he would ensure they got this money back. Of course this never happened and Gaye & Ernest paid up and have never been repaid. An involuntary donation.
The situation is even more complicated in that they own the house in which the Joburg Org executives live and another house where outer org trainees live.
It’s an indictment of the church to see where it has come to that they will act in this covertly destructive way.
And those Scientologists who refuse to look are happy to accept the rumours without question. Every Scientologist must, however ask themselves this question: If the church is willing to treat its luminaries in this fashion what will they be willing to do to me?