The Prior Confusion
(See also data on Prior Confusion here)
Based on a lecture by Ron Hubbard given October 4, 1961, "The Prior Confusion".
(The basic theory about the prior confusion and the problem is the theory behind the process "A Problems Intensive" which is part of the processes used on Grade One, Problems step.)
A chronic somatic is the stuck point on the Time Track. It was adopted as a stable datum of a prior confusion. A hidden standard is the same phenomenon: a stable datum adopted after the fact. It's easy to miss this because the confusion is earlier and is confusing. The stable datum isn't in the middle of it if it's aberrative. You can always adopt a stable datum in the middle of a confusion. That's what you ought to do. It's the one chosen later that sticks you on the track. This is the way something gets very, very stuck. It can be a somatic; it can be a hidden standard or an aberrated decision or simply any decision, really. The way it gets really stuck is when the stable datum is adopted after the fact. This isn't necessarily logical. It is true because it is observed to be true, not because of any theoretical reason. The way to blow the chronic somatic is to blow the confusion immediately before its start.
Example: Some guy is driving pretty recklessly all the time and is usually getting away with it. Then, at some point, the person has an accident and breaks his leg in the accident. The leg heals up but the pain from the injury seems to persist. This is what we call a chronic somatic. The pain can come and go, but it never goes away entirely. The prior confusion of what led to the accident, and possibly earlier near misses, keeps the injury in place. The person can hold on real hard to this injury as to tell himself that he did no wrong but was the victim. The prior confusion of all his reckless driving is held in place by this aberrated stable datum of the broken leg and the chronic somatic of the injury.
Let's say our reckless driver develops this into a hidden standard. That would mean he would go into all kinds of treatment to get rid of this somatic in his leg. As a pc he would measure the effectiveness of any process received as whether it got rid of the somatic or not.
Example: A girl is going to college has a hard time succeeding as a student. She doesn't really make the grade. She is dispersed about sitting down and study and does a lot of partying instead. At some point she gets an offer about doing a modeling job and she gladly leaves college behind. This doesn't work out, however. She hangs up on this failure of her aspiring modeling career. The prior confusion was her poor performance as a student. The way to unstick her from this loss would be to audit her on the prior confusion of not making it in college.
It may be tricky to get the pc to look at the confusion, not at the stable datum; his attention bounces to later periods. The confusion has a lot of unknownness in it, which may be masked by a lot of pretended knowingness. When looking for the prior confusion, don't get just whatever was there right before; it may be six months earlier. Lots of odd forgettingness turns up as you look. Forgettingness is caused by inability to confront a motion. The confusion area is a not-know area, which the guy handles with a know later, even if it's stupid and painful. It's still a knowingness.
All psychosomatics and hidden standards are cures for mysteries. One can get a feeling of relief following a confusion that isn't really much relieved. It can be just from getting a knownness following a confusion. A pain at least is real. A chronic somatic can be a knowingness. If it's being used as a hidden standard, it is being used for knowingness. There must have been some confusion before it. It can take some time for the pc to sort out when the somatic started and what the prior confusion was about when it started. You can ask, "When did you notice it earlier?" or, "What happened before you noticed?" It's not a repetitive command. You can even, by Assessment, get the pc to look at the confusion accurately enough so it will As-is and blow.
If you are auditing a pc with a hidden standard, you are auditing a pc whose attention is fixed on some special area and is doing something extra with the command. He tries to fit the process to solve his hidden standard and problem. This indicates out-ruds, since the pc isn't under the auditor's control, but is putting in a self-audit step on each cycle. Any pc who doesn't seem to make progress is doing this. He may resist telling the auditor what he's doing as well. If you ask him, "When did you start to notice the (thing he's complaining of)?" and he gives a non-sequitur answer, you can see him bounce out of the confusion and up to present time. This tells you that you are on the right track. You have to direct his attention to the right area to get the confusion; don't just give him a free license to natter about the terminal he's fixated on. Keep guiding him to the occluded area that precedes the somatic or whatever. Ask about confusions or upsets or whatever you can get. This sounds like a long process. This phenomenon can show up when you run an Engram (painful incident). You start with the motionless point and search around to find the earlier action parts. Just auditing the motionless part with the chronic somatic in it won't resolve it. Even when running an ordinary Engram, if part of the Engram sticks, get the earlier part of the Engram. Some more basic questions arise here: "How does a person get stuck on the track in the first place and why is one on a Time Track at all? Could it be that there's a confusion at the beginning? What is time?" Maybe it's a retreat from a confusion we did not care to confront. A person's ability to confront confusion could just blow chronic somatics, but it's not to be counted on. It might be necessary to get several hidden standards out of the way. This can be accomplished by finding the prior confusion and Prep-check it and repeat the process on different areas.