Note: This chapter is from 'The Road to Clear", Level 4 Pro.
What is Potential Trouble Source?
A Roller-coaster ride is known
What is PTS
A Potential Trouble Source (PTS) is a specific case condition or type of case. A person or preclear who gets better, then worse is said to "Roller-Coaster". This happens only when the PTS person is connected to a person hostile or antagonistic to him or her or to what the PTS person is doing. It can be an individual or a group expressing this hostility and disapproval. Such a person or group is called an Antagonistic Terminal (AT). If such a relationship or condition exists it is the first thing to do something about. We know a pc will not make gains over a Present Time Problem. If a PTS situation exists it is a Present Time Problem of magnitude and the only thing that should be addressed until handled. It must be handled for the pc in order to stabilize him or her. And it must be handled to some degree before any auditing is attempted as no permanent gains or benefits can be achieved over such a problem. After such a situation is handled to some extent by instructing and coaching the pc on how to deal with it and have him do something about it, the pc should be audited on it. And he must, in order to make permanent gains from processing, only receive processing intended to handle such a condition until handled.
A PTS has a
So a Potential Trouble Source (PTS) is somebody
who is connected to an Antagonistic Person (AT), who is invalidating him, his
beingness, his processing, his life. It means the case is going to go up and
fall down. He's a trouble source because he's going to get upset. He's a trouble
source because he's going to make trouble. And he's trouble for the auditor and
he's trouble for people around him and he's trouble for himself. He is connected
to a person or group opposed to him or processing or what he does in life. It is
a technical thing. It results in illness and roller-coaster and is the cause of
illness and roller-coaster.
Handling PTS Conditions
PTS situations can come about at any time. It can happen while a person is being audited or it can happen in daily life. For a pc receiving auditing or service it is a top priority to address and handle it right away. It has to be done competently to get the person back on his feet and back in auditing or training. Many pc's new to ST need a PTS handling as one of their first actions.
Auditing or training must not be done or continued over an unhandled PTS situation. It would cause any processing or study to be done under the heavy stress from the antagonism or suppression.
When you see such a situation you do not just go on hoping or try to ignore it. You have to look at it head on and handle it. Handling PTS situations is not difficult. There is no excuse for not doing it. The data and steps below lay out the many different handlings which can be used to bring about a full resolution of all PTSness in all pcs.
Educating the PTS is an
A person who has become PTS is often the last person to suspect it. He or she may have become PTS in a stressed situation and it is often a temporary condition. Sometimes his condition is very light. But he may also have been PTS for a long time and gotten so used to it so 'that's life' to him. Whatever the case may be the first step is to educate the person in the subject.
PTS Basic Definitions
The PTS Basic Definitions, given in this section, must be done before any other PTS handling is done.
Clearing the basic ideas and concepts prepares a person enough to understand his own PTS situation and the mechanisms involved. This is an important first step and it is always done.
Once the pc has been educated in the basic definitions a metered PTS interview can be done. The pc can also be given a "PTS Assist". This is usually done on a Meter by an auditor in session or another knowledgeable person (but it don't have to be metered). In most cases such an Assist will help the person to spot the antagonistic or suppressive element. Once the AT is found the potential trouble source can be assisted in working out a handling for that terminal. If it is not a terminal the pc depends on the simplest handling can be to cease contact. If the PTS person depends upon that terminal a handling should be worked out. There are a lot of data written on this subject, including chapters in the books "Introduction to Scn Ethics" and "Volunteers Minister's Handbook". In this manual we concentrate on the auditing side and will have to refer the student to these books to get an in-depth coverage of it. If the AT cannot easily be found the pc may have more 'case' related to the situation or condition. There are different categories of PTS situations. In the simplest form the pc is under attack in present time from a source that easily can be found. This is called PTS Type One (or Type A). A not uncommon situation is PTS Type Two. Here the condition depends on a past PTS situation being restimulated by present dangers or persons. This need to be addressed by a qualified auditor with actions like the Audited PTS RD.
Suppression and Entheta
Antagonistic persons usually use and speak entheta. Entheta means Enturbulated thought or life; this is especially destructive communications based on lies and wanting to spread confusion in an attempt to overwhelm or suppress the PTS person. Entheta has no power in itself but feed on theta in a parasitic fashion.
This is an important datum as it is often the PTS person that "feeds" the suppressive terminal. Thus by working with the PTS person you can find out what he or she is doing to fuel the situation and have him change that. In some instances disconnection is the only workable option. You cut the feed-line completely and the entheta will stop.
Once an antagonistic terminal has been located a handling is done. This is done outside session, usually by a so-called Ethics Officer. To handle the pc's Present Time Problem takes physical action. We had the definition of a PTP as: "A specific problem that exists in the physical universe now, on which a person has his attention fixed. This can be practical matters he feels he ought to do something about right away. Any set of circumstances that occupies the pc's attention so he feels he should do something about it instead of being audited". This is exactly what you have in a PTS situation. And the way to go about it is to do something about it. Such a handling should move the PTS person from being effect of the situation to a point where he can take a bit of responsibility for it. He is gradually moved towards being cause over the situation. This handling can include writing letters, making phone calls, handle whatever he is continuously being attacked for or simply tell him to make up his mind about something and act on it - whatever it takes to get the result. The handling and course of action depend on the person and the situation.
A "good roads, fair weather-approach" to the antagonistic terminal is usually what is needed (see chapter). The handling must be understood and accepted by the PTS person and the person assisting him must be focused on putting the PTS at cause step by step.
Handling may include coaching him along and look for things that brought about the PTS condition in the first place. Did the pc antagonize the AT in some way out of lack of concern or rudeness? Did he mis-apply any basic data, such as ARC and the tone scale? Such factors should be looked into and the PTS person instructed accordingly. Often simple measures and good manners, 'Good Roads and Fair Weather' will go a long way. Also 'Living with Right and Wrong' can be useful.
It will often be found, that a PTS situation
exists between the pc and his or her parents. The situation can be due to the
pc's rebelliousness or the parents lack of understanding and respect of the pc
as an independent individual. They may 'have other plans' for the pc than what
is right for him or her to do. There are a lot to be said for a person skilled
in handling PTS situations. It takes good grasp of the basics of Ethics and ST
and experience to master it.
The handling is best done with
The PTS handling is best done with a written program. When the PTS person has been interviewed and the matters and situation discussed, the Ethics Officer or handler should write a step by step program for the PTS person to do. It may contain things to read, things to drill, and things to do. It is a good idea to drill the PTS person on how to handle the situation in a practical sense. You simply run the person through what to say and how to act in relationship to the AT and correct anything that would make the situation worse.
Example: The following is based on a real case story. You want to coach the pc from effect to being cause. When the PTS person starts to become more cause over the situation the whole thing tends to cool off. The communication formula is "Cause - Distance - Effect" in its simplest form. We once handled a young woman being PTS to her mother. The daughter was living and working in another country now. She had these long phone conversations with the mother, the antagonistic person (AT). Not only was the mother giving her daughter a hard time, the calls were also expensive. We instructed and drilled the PTS person in what basically amounted to TR-2 and TR-4, acknowledgment and handling originations. This was after listening in on one conversation, where the daughter got very upset and apparently the mother went on and on. The AT mother was basically trying to get the daughter not to study or do ST nor receive auditing. Her mother was used to run her daughter's life and the present situation upset her. So we drilled the daughter in handling this kind of criticism and attempts of dominating control. An important point was simply acknowledgment. There were several more steps, of course, but this was really the one little thing that turned it around. The next time she talked to her mother the daughter just did what she had drilled. She listened and acknowledged with little comment. The comments she did make were well prepared and drilled. After all, each phone conversation was not much different from the previous so responses could be worked out beforehand. When you give an acknowledgment you are occupying the Cause end of the comm formula, you see. You are controlling the other person's comm to an extent. Not only was the daughter's phone bill only a fraction of the previous ones - which all by itself gave her some relief - she also realized she could do something about her mother without having to generate more antagonism. She realized she could control her mother's communication and not only be at Effect but also at Cause.
It may not always be that simple. Yet, beginning steps are usually best tackled with a light approach (see Effect Scale). You are starting to resolve the situation.
If the situation does not seem to resolve with physical handlings alone the PTS person may need an Audited PTS program. There may exist a PTS Type Two situation, where the real problem is restimulation and the actual source and incidents behind are unknown to the pc. There exists a line-up of techniques and Rundowns, designed to handle that:
Flying rudiments and overts on four flows on the antagonistic terminal is often done to "get the ruds in" and enable the pc to better confront the PTS situation he is faced with. This would of course only be done in session by a qualified auditor. The commands for this can be found as part of the audited PTS RD. This step can be done when the full PTS RD seems like an over-kill.
The PTS Rundown
The Audited PTS Rundown is done on preclears who have had successful PTS handlings, but is found to get sick or roller-coaster at a later time. Pc becomes ill, slumps after making gains, or continues to find additional terminals they are PTS to. Obviously there is more work to be done.
The PTS Rundown handles a pc's PTSness in more depth and is run to the end phenomena of a pc who is getting and keeping case gains and never again roller-coasters.
Suppressed Person Rundown
This Rundown is simple, yet very effective. It can be done with great success on all PTS persons of any case level, from those just beginning their first auditing to Clears and above.
The end phenomena of this RD is a surprising - miraculous you could say - re-establishing of communication between the AT and the PTS. At some point of the RD the Antagonistic Terminal will actually originate such a communication to the pc.
Rest and Quiet
There is such a condition as a PTS Type Three situation. In daily language this is called a nervous breakdown or a psychotic break. The person has been totally overwhelmed by the antagonism, hostility and evil intentions he or she is subject to. If this should happen to a person in your care or happen to a person you know, the best thing to provide is rest, quiet, and a safe environment. The thing not to do is to run to the pharmacy to get 'nerve tablets' or any other drugs. Drugs may cover up the symptoms, but it is not a cure. To remove sources of restimulation from the environment is the best first aid. You may have to remove the person from where he or she lives as persons around and the environment keeps him restimulated. The real reason for the Type Three condition is however heavy BPC on terminals located in the PTS person's Bank but having to do with suppression.
A PTS Type Two condition exists, when the AT in the environment is only the apparent suppressive person (SP) or antagonistic terminal (AT). On the pc's track there will be a real suppressive person, unknown to the pc, that some time in the past created such a chaos and threat, that the pc has it in restimulation all the time. That is why it has to be found in auditing. The real source of suppression is not in the pc's present environment or an associate - even when the pc feels and thinks it is. This can be handled with the PTS RD. This is relatively easy to handle when caught in time.
When we talk about a PTS Type Three situation we are talking about a severe and acute restimulation of a Type Two condition. The apparent AT and the SP's on the pc's track are suddenly spread all over the world. Any contact with any human can set this restimulation off. It's a total A=A=A in action on any human being. It can include more than all the people in the world. The person may sometimes include ghosts or demons and imaginary beings as well. Peace and quiet is the best first aid. Healthy food, safe environment, big solid objects to touch. Gentle care and minimal 'treatment' of any kind. Eventually the thing will destimulate and key out. When the person feels stable and well enough the pc can be given light touch auditing and eventually be run on a PTS RD which is the real cure. In dealing with PTS Type Three any assignments and therapy should be done observing the effect scale.
Note: We use the term Antagonistic Terminal as the type of terminal a person goes effect to (PTS). It wasn't defined clearly this way until 1978 in the Suppressed Person RD. Quote: "...an antagonistic terminal... Where this terminal was antagonistic, invalidative, hostile or downright suppressive, he will suddenly have a change of heart and seek to make peace with the PTS pc."
The term Suppressive Person (SP) was the original term used for the person the PTS goes effect to. It was defined by R. Hubbard as an anti-social personality (1965) or what in psychiatry is called a 'psychopath' or 'sociopath' and in popular culture, the villain - somebody operating on evil purposes. But at some point in Scn it became practice to declare critics, opponents and 'political dissidents' for 'SP'. This eroded the term for technical meaning, clarity and usefulness. It was used as name calling and no-one could be totally safe. It now simply meant 'enemy', 'bad guy' or 'witch'. In ST we still use the term 'SP' in a narrow technical sense (as originally defined), when called for, as they do exist. But our general term is Antagonistic Terminal (AT) as it is used in Suppressed Person RD.
It also became clear over the years (between 1965 when 'SP' was first defined and 1971 when the Audited PTS RD first came out) that the "SP/PTS tech" had a much broader application than just handling the bad influences of true SP's on the pc. We have elevated the use of Antagonistic Terminal as a new technical term for what we have actually been handling all along. As most PTS situations have to do with all kinds of antagonism and confrontational situations and only occasionally true SP's, we call such persons or groups for Antagonistic Terminals and use the abbreviation AT for such terminals. The technology in this area we simply call PTS technology (not SP/PTS technology). The pc can go PTS and this is the tech for handling that. The focus is the pc. The true SP is outside the realm of individual practitioners to deal with and remains 'the villain'. It may be possible to develop institutions that can deal with these types of cases based on the technology (clinical tests for diagnosis do not exist at this time. Only production records or life history seem to give a somewhat reliable clue). But such projects would have to be very well funded and have solid back-up from the medical profession before they should be undertaken.