Clearing Archive Roboposter
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Wed Jul 15 12:06:01 EDT 2020
Chapter 9 - COVERT HOSTILITY (1.1)
Covert: 1) Covered or covered over, sheltered. 2) concealed, hidden,
secretly hostile: 1) Of or pertaining to an enemy. 2) feeling or
showing enmity, & antagonistic.
-American Heritage Dictionary
The main difficulty with a 1.1 is that he doesn't wear a neon sign telling
you he's a 1.1.
It's a cover-up tone - the most difficult one on the scale to recognize.
After you do spot one, don't expect the next 1.1 you meet to bear much
HIS MANY DISGUISES
He may be that hearty buffoon, "the life of the party." She's the
inconspicuous little old maid down the street who never forgets your
-birthday. He could be the jovial, back-slapping salesman. The smooth
con man. The witty, entertaining gossip columnist. The swaggering office
Don Juan. She might be the smiling lady next door who knows all the
delicious little stories about the neighbors. He's the lover who is gay
and tenderly passionate one minute and disdainfully sarcastic the next.
He's the clever impostor who passed himself off as a surgeon for fifteen
years. He's the gentle-mannered homosexual. Or that pleasant young man
who "never said an unkind word to anyone" but was just convicted of seven
hideous sex crimes. Or that newspaper reporter who appeared so friendly
until his story (full of slimy innuendoes) was in print. And here's where
we find that nice bank president who embezzled $100,000 and skipped off to
Brazil with the belly dancer. He could be the sensitive poet, the suave
millionaire or the charming vagrant who lives by his wits and hasn't done
a day's work in twenty years.
Wherever he turns up, he'll be in disguise. If you're generous in
character, you may be tempted to treat him leniently.
At 1.1 we find the emotion Ron Hubbard has described as "the most
dangerous and wicked level on the tone scale." (Science of Survival)
He's halfway between Fear (which motivates his tone) and Anger (which he
must conceal). His emotion dictates that he smile and put up a good front
at all times since he "knows" he mustn't ever become angry. At this
position we find flagrant lying in order to avoid real communication.
Such lying may be in the form of pretended agreement ("what a marvelous
idea"), flattery ("that's a darling dress, my dear") or appeasement ("now
don't worry; I'll take care of everything").
The 1.1 constructs a false facade, an artificial personality. He's the
AS A FRIEND
You won't need enemies. You'd be better off as a recluse. Don't trust
him with your money, your reputation or your wife. He's a person who
hates but is unable to say he hates. He deals in treachery and expects to
be forgiven. He'll tell you he stood up for you when he actually did his
best to destroy your reputation. He'll flatter you quite insincerely
while he waits for his moment to do you in. And he'll find more ways of
doing you in than I can possibly catalog in one chapter.
The 1.1 expects special privileges or exemptions, He'll be the one most
likely to assume that he can break the rules-of a marriage, a company, a
group or society.
We often like the 1.1 at first because he pretends to be so high-tone.
But eventually (unless we're in Sympathy) we grow to despise him. Our
loathing, however, is sometimes hard to explain because we can seldom pin
down exactly what this doll is doing that's so despicable.
While he's arrogant, he's such an accomplished actor that we may be
deceived by his put-on of humility. Having command of all the tones below
his, he uses them without conscience to convince us he's harmless and
means well. In this way, he manipulates people, always seeking hidden
control. He may weep, plead, propitiate or sympathize; he may pose
contempt or disdain. But through all the histrionics he is trying to
nullify others to get them to the level where they can be used.
If you get mad at him, he usually drops to Propitiation (goes out of his
way to do things for you or brings you gifts) or Grief ("I didn't mean any
harm in order to worm his way back into your confidence. Count on him to
know your soft spots and to play on them with consummate skill.
Here's a fast way to peg a 1.1: he seeks to introvert you. This generally
occurs in the first few seconds of meeting him. He'll say, "You've gained
some weight, haven't you?" or "I can't figure out why you look so
different. On the phone, he may open the conversation with: "Your voice
sounds funny; do you have a cold?" Under the guise of friendly concern,
these remarks are meant to push your attention into yourself (and away
from him). Soon you'll be explaining yourself or worrying: "What's the
matter with me?"
On meeting, the 1.1 nearly always tries to speak first in order to grasp
control of the conversation. If he gets his own darts in first, there is
less chance for something to be thrown at him. I once introduced two 1.1
men to each other. As I did so, I wondered who would win the inevitable
rush to get in the first word. Well, they both started talking at once,
and they kept talking for at least a full minute, neither hearing a single
word said by the other. They were well-matched.
Covert Hostility fills his conversation with small barbs, thinly veiled as
compliments ("this cake is delicious, almost as good as anything you could
buy in a store"). It's a 1.1 who uttered the classic put-down: "That's
such a lovely dress you're wearing. I've admired it for years."
He feels a continual nervous necessity to reject almost any remark. If
you're trying to make a sincere statement or present an upscale idea,
he'll query it, "I see what you mean, but ... " He'll helpfully correct
your pronunciation and word choices (he's the semantic fanatic), start
picking lint off your shoulder, or interject a joke at your expense
(usually with puns; he loves them). He uses any conceivable method of
cutting your communication to ribbons. Of course (ha ha) he didn't mean
any harm. Just being friendly.
He lies when there's no reason to lie. Facts are confused, twisted or
hidden, while he noisily advertises his honesty, ethics and virtue. He
may be giving you his sacred word" while he wields his automatic knife-in
If you challenge his lies, he'll probably tell you he was being "subtle."
The high-tone person might play the role of spy and do it well (although
he does not enjoy subterfuge). The 1.1, however, is a natural spy. If
you want to make this fellow come to life, present him with an inviting
situation that requires guile, cunning, deviousness or perversion. Give
him a justification for window peeping, eavesdropping, snooping or secret
investigating and he's fully aware.
When there's a straight course for doing something, the 1.1 won't use it;
it doesn't occur to him. He'll think of a devious method for doing the
same thing. I once worked in an off ice where the 1.1 office manager
forbade dumping ashtrays in the wastebaskets. I assumed this rule was
motivated by fastidiousness (or a conscience about fire prevention) until
I learned that every night he searched through all the wastebaskets before
they were emptied (even piecing together torn bits of paper), so he could
find out what was "really going on" in the office. He relished
discovering some juicy secret in this manner. Of course, the word got
around, so the staff started amusing themselves by planting all sorts of
wild, fictitious scraps of "evidence" in with the discards.
Although 1.1 conceals his own motives and activities, he is strongly
compelled to reveal secrets of others. This is the tone of the traitor
and the subversive. Having no regard for privacy, he thrives on the
chance to expose people (this is even more prevalent in the next tone: No
Sympathy). The Covert Hostility who is having a "secret" love affair will
do his best to see that evidence is left around so that people find out,
especially where this creates trouble for his partner.
He's a genius at extracting information from others. Several years ago I
worked for a company on some secret research. Only three of us knew the
nature of the project and none of us was an indiscriminate talker.
Therefore, I was surprised one day, lunching with the switchboard
operator, when she casually said, "Well, I understand you found . . . "
She was so nearly right that it was hard to believe she was only guessing.
I denied any knowledge of the subject, so she said, "Oh, come on, don't
kid me. Everyone knows what you're working on." I realized later that she
must have listened in on phone conversations for part of her information;
the rest was conjecture.
Even the speculations of a 1.1 are done with a blatant pretense that he
knows all; this way he frequently lures his unsuspecting victim into
telling too much.
THE MYSTERY TECHNIQUE
The 1.1 not only enjoys probing a mystery, he likes to create one. He can
even use a knowing, enigmatic smile as a put-down. I once saw a 1.1
looking over the manuscript prepared by a friend of mine, while my friend
eagerly awaited comments. When he finished, the 1.1 merely smiled slyly
and said, "I'm reserving judgment on it. I'll be thinking it over."
This was an insidious blow to the author's pride, but he recovered when I
indicated the tone level of his would-be critic. A clever and vicious way
to entrap a creative person-pin his attention in a mystery.
Implying hidden knowledge is a common device of the gossip. A person of
higher tone may pass on news of mutual friends, but he tries to stay with
facts. The 1.1, however, embellishes the facts with additives which sound
true. "You know Joe and Phyllis are splitting up?" That may be a fact.
But Mabel (the 1.1) will add: "Just between you and me, it wouldn't
surprise me to hear that she was running around with Bill on the sly."
Her knowing manner suggests that she's certain of more facts than she's
The chronic gossip who enjoys shredding a reputation with half-truths,
suppositions and speculations is a 1.1. You may meet her draped over the
backyard fence; you'll find him leaning on the office water cooler. It's
often the tone of the reporter, interviewer and talk show M.C.-the one who
uses his charm to gain the confidence of the interviewee before he slices
It requires stoic discipline to resist the sly questioning techniques of
Many years ago I moved into a flat and purchased the furniture of the
former tenants. A short time later, the upstairs neighbor dropped in. "I
see you bought their furniture," she said.
I nodded and changed the subject. A few minutes later she brought the
conversation back to the furniture: "I understand they were asking fifteen
hundred dollars for it ..."
The statement hung in the air like a question, creating a perfect
opportunity for me to correct or confirm her statement. Having met her
kind before, however, I decided to out 1.1 her, so I simply murmured,
"Really?" and changed the subject.
The 1.1 will jeopardize a business. He cunningly infects an entire
office, turning people against each other and all of them against the
company. He's so covert that he's nearly invisible as the source of bad
news and general frustration in the environment.
Although he can do a job, and usually manages to appear hardworking, it's
often a bluff. Unable to tolerate being the effect of anyone, he evades
by covert means. Ask him to do a job and he says, "Sure, I'll be glad to
do it," but it never gets done. He pretends to take orders; but there's
no intention to follow through.
Covert Hostility is not responsible but he pretends to be. I went to a
charming modern wedding out on the West Coast where there were no ushers.
A 1.1 relative of the groom took it upon herself to stand at the door
telling incoming guests: "Since apparently there aren't to be any ushers,
I guess you'll just have to find your own seat."
Speaking with acid emphasis, she appeared to be dollars for it ...
assuming responsibility; but her intent was destructive. Clearly, she
wanted to make certain the guests knew this wedding was "improperly
planned." If a high-tone person noticed that arriving guests were confused
(and I don't think they were in this case), he might say, "Just take a
seat wherever you like." No vicious implications.
The 1.1 is so preoccupied with making an impression on people, his need
for recognition puts him on stage all of the time. Never relaxing, he's
an actor, constantly studying his audience to see if everyone is
impressed. It's difficult for a 1.1 to be an audience for long.
In the classroom, he's often the first person to pose a question after the
lecture (he'll interrupt if permitted): "Professor, don't you think . . .
" He's not interested in getting an answer; he merely wants to establish
his brilliance. The question is posed for its effect.
Many 1.1s want attention so much they're immune to embarrassment. I once
knew one who dressed in the most outlandish clothes imaginable. He
drifted around looking like a psychedelic bad trip and frequently bragged:
"Everybody noticed me." This same person relished any opportunity to make
remarks designed to shock everyone in the room. There are other 1.1s,
incidentally, who dress and speak most conservatively.
When he can't get into the limelight himself, he fastens onto creative,
successful people and works unceasingly to knock them downscale. We find
1.1s clustered around the perimeter of show business. He is often the
nonperforming critic who seeks hidden control over some area of aesthetics
so he can tell the talented person viciously destructive things "for your
When he fails to get close to the winners, he brags that he is anyway. He
knows the big movie stars. The President asks his advice. He pretends
he's having love affairs with the most beautiful women.
Because of a strong compulsion to play the big shot, the 1.1 often
connives his way to the higher echelons of business, politics, clubs or
social groups. He's a short-cutter, however, with such idle persistence
that he's rarely proficient in any line. Instead, he learns only enough
to fake his way to an influential spot. He wants the applause without
ever learning to dance.
He's the dilettante who dabbles in music and gives it up. He studies
painting for a month and loses interest. Too flighty to concentrate on a
subject long enough to become accomplished, he prefers to make a cursory
study after which he uses guile and chicanery to pass himself off as an
All criminals fall below 2.0 on the scale as long as they are still
criminals) and a great many of them are 1.1s. Even when a Covert Hostility
person is not actively breaking the law, he is unethical and dishonest.
He has a tendency toward suicidal actions; but he is actively seeking the
death of his entire environment ("I guess I'll succumb but maybe I'll take
you with me"). Here we have murder by slow erosion of individuals and
culture, each harmful action slyly masked with lengthy reasoning. Here we
find the people who most promote (and most enjoy) pornography. Here is
the silky pimp who talks the young girl into becoming a prostitute. Here
is the cagey pusher who convinces teenagers that they should "get with
it," and that drugs are harmless anyway.
RELAY OF COMMUNICATION
He prefers to relay only the most malicious communication. Good news is
quickly forgotten or deliberately suppressed. If you send a special
bargain notice to a customer and there's a 1.1 opening the mail, he'll see
that the notice never gets to the buyer in time. Covert Hostility people
frequently position themselves where they can control incoming
communications. This not only gratifies their snooping instincts, it
permits hidden control.
One morning I observed a 1.1 handling a small business establishment for
the absent owner. It was a busy day with customers, orders and inquiries
constantly flowing in. An irate workman called; a foreman was not on the
job and couldn't be located. A few minutes later the owner phoned in.
"Oh boy," our dream girl reported with relish, "things are really a mess
around here today . . ."
She dwelled lengthily on the one "trouble" call, completely neglecting to
mention all the good news and normal business.
SENSE OF HUMOR
He enjoys no real sense of humor, but at this tone we most often hear the
compulsive laughter that burbles out when there is nothing at all amusing.
We may be discussing the weather or the ball scores and the 1.1 will
titter or chuckle meaninglessly. He laughs at a joke-probably longer than
everyone else-but it's not really funny to him. Nothing is.
I've known many 1.1s who were not practical jokers; but I've never known a
practical joker who wasn't a 1.1. They delight in making elaborate, secret
preparations designed to fool, embarrass, expose, belittle or humiliate
the victim. All in fun, of course.
The manager of a local insurance company told me of a time, early in his
career, when he was transferred to an office in another state. Apparently
some ethnic conviction caused people in that particular area to shun life
insurance policies, although they would happily buy annuities. Unaware of
this, our man spent two frustrating weeks trying to sell life insurance;
but he failed completely. Bewildered and depressed, he described his
experiences to the men in the office. Finally, they disclosed the secret
of selling in that city. Permitting him to lose for awhile was part of
the "initiation" for a new man. Although my friend failed to appreciate
the joke, the 1.1 boys in the office considered it hilarious.
He acts amazed when you don't laugh at his sly capers. If you get
annoyed, he expects you to forgive his peccadilloes.
You could write a whole book on the sexual characteristics of the 1.1 (and
many people have). Some of them are strait-laced to the point of
prudishness and blatantly insist on morals. for others. But also at this
level we most frequently find promiscuity, perversion, sadism and every
irregular practice. Strangely, the 1.1 doesn't actually enjoy the sex act
itself, but is hectically anxious about it. He'll be the strong advocate
of "free love."
The excessively promiscuous person is nearly always a 1.1. His lack of
persistence shows up in the inability to enjoy a long-term, meaningful
relationship with one individual. He constantly seeks sexual pleasure
through the new and different.
Such people are dangerous to a society because their kinky behavior is
contagious. Free love and promiscuity are danger signals which should be
heeded if a race is to go forward. Such activities indicate a covert
reversal of the sanctity of love and marriage. There are now so many
publications devoted exclusively to advocating, encouraging and
glamorizing promiscuity, that the upscale person may feel out-numbered.
He begins to question his natural instinct for fidelity and constancy and
wonders if he's old-fashioned.
Today's frank confrontation of problems related to abortion, birth control
and enlightened sexual adjustment is much saner than the Victorian
priggishness that clouded such issues for many years. However, harbingers
of the "liberated age" (usually the 1.1s of the press and periodicals)
would have us believe that this means anything goes. With glib
irresponsibility, they report on man's most debased activities and ignore
the possibility that their own choice of "news" will be a corroding
The 1.1 can be the sweetest-talking lover on the tone scale, but as a
long-term partner, he's most harmful. Very likely he'll cheat and/or
insidiously undermine his spouse's confidence with all manner of
subterfuge. He won't be satisfied until his partner is reduced to Apathy
and all dreams are gone.
Recently a friend wrote me about observing a group of homosexuals who
lived near him: "I think they're called 'gay' for good reason," he said,
"I've never heard so much laughter as I have living with these cats
around. There's an almost constant level of superficial gaiety and
This is the forced "happiness" of the 1.1.
Homosexuals may be fearful, sympathetic, propitiative, griefy or
apathetic. Occasionally they manage an ineffectual tantrum. But home
base is 1.1.
Homosexuals don't practice love; 1.1s can't. Their relationships consist
of: 1) brief, sordid and impersonal meetings or 2) longer arrangements
punctuated by dramatic tirades, discords, jealousies and frequent
infidelity. It could hardly be otherwise since the tone is made up of
suspicion and hate, producing a darling sweetness interspersed with petty
peevishness. Their "love" turns to deep contempt eventually.
Although the 1.1 detests children, he's sometimes capable of playing the
role of parent convincingly. There is always the subtle, damaging
inclination, however, no matter how benignly masked.. We see little
concern for the future of the child. We see careless family actions (such
as adultery) which tend to split up the family and destroy the security on
which the child's future depends.
Sometimes the 1.1 takes good physical care of a child, but is guilty of
emotional and moral neglect. This tone always tries to stop the child
from being angry, thus suppressing him below 1.5 on the scale. He's
excessively concerned with the child's appearance and manners-his front.
Ultimately, he tries to push the child to apathetic compliance. At best,
the Covert Hostility parent begets a Covert Hostility child.
Since it's unpopular to dislike children, the 1.1 may hide his cruelty
behind playful jokes. He will tease, criticize and gently harass a child
to the point of tears. One time a saleswoman calling at the door jokingly
said to my youngest son, "I'm going to take you home with me." He looked
at her as if she'd lost her marbles and wandered off to play. She related
that earlier the same day she told a little girl she was going to take her
baby brother home; the little girl burst into tears. It Is typical of the
1.1, that having just produced a totally alarming effect on one child, she
was now attempting to use the same technique on mine. Under the guise of
joking friendliness, she wanted to hurt the youngsters.
In a safe, upscale environment, the 1.1 may come up to 1.5. But generally
speaking, he is incapable of Anger. Somewhere in the past, losing his
temper became so dangerous that he is now afraid to do so. The animosity
is there, however, constantly squeezing out beneath the veneer of good
fellowship. If he could blow his top and get it out of his system, he
might move up the scale and become a nice person. But as long as he is
unable to express himself in direct confrontation, he works secretly to
injure and destroy.
If you're uncertain whether a person is 1.1, notice how you feel with him.
Do you get thrown off balance? Feel self-conscious? Worry about whether
you're witty enough, cool enough, sophisticated enough?
This is a common social tone. People of higher or lower levels will adopt
a somewhat false politeness for superficial contacts. Such "good
manners," however, do not carry the destructive intention of the chronic
The tones below this are more destructive (especially for the poor chaps
who are in them); but they are weak. Unless your relationship is very
personal, they will have little influence on you. The 1.1. however, can
seldom be ignored. He impinges. He makes his presence known. The more
able you are, the more likely he will insinuate himself into your space,
your time and your life-as jovial as the deadly virus that invades your
bloodstream and lays you up in bed for six weeks.
Several ways of handling a 1.1 will be discussed in later chapters, but
probably the best advice is this: get him out of your environment. Don't
bother being subtle about it. He's insensitive to hints, incapable of
embarrassment. He'll keep coming back with the persistence of a fly on a
sticky summer day unless you bluntly tell him-perhaps several times-that
you don't want his company. Once you do this, naturally, he'll talk about
you behind your back. But, don't kid yourself, he's been talking about
you all along anyway.
Remember that beneath that pixie twinkle thumps a heart of solid granite.
Chapter 10 - NO SYMPATHY (1.2)
"I don't know, Frank, which one of these girls do you think I should
Puzzled by the unexpected confidence from his fellow worker, my somewhat
conventional friend asked, "Well, which one are you in love with?"
"Who the hell's talking about love? I'm wondering which one will do me
the most good."
This young social climber later married a beautiful girl from a wealthy,
prominent family and worked his way to the top in the entertainment
business, ruthlessly trampling his trusting benefactors.
Meet No Sympathy. He's cold, blunt, uncaring, unfeeling. You aren't
going to like him. A man without a conscience, he appears to be totally
emotionless. He's the person for whom most of our explicit swear words
On this level we find an intriguing mixture of the characteristics of 1.5
and 1.1. Displaying more animosity then the 1.1, not quite blasting off in
Anger, he dwells in a narrow band where he can be identified by his cold
"Don't tell me your troubles." He puts up a black curtain before himself
to prevent experiencing any compassion for those he's hurting - and he will
be hurting somebody.
When people get upset by his actions (and many do), the 1.2 is genuinely
surprised. Such emotions are unreal to him. His aloof rigidity is the
result of tightly holding down a violent charge of Anger. He's using so
much effort to suppress Anger that he shuts off all emotions - high and low.
This creates a paradox: a person who appears unemotional because his
emotions are actually too strong. Of course, he is suppressing all
remorse for his past actions. He doesn't dare unbend, because "emotion"
to him is violent and uncontrolled Anger.
At a party once each person was giving a brief description of himself.
One man indicated his tone with the remark: "Most people think I'm
snobbish, but I just wasn't born with the gift of gregariousness."
Later the same man said to me, "I'm usually cool and unemotional,
although sometimes I do lose my temper and I suffer for it.
It's pretty terrible."
THE LOVE GAME
Some 1.2s are completely turned off to the whole love scene. Others are
compulsively promiscuous. If No Sympathy decides to play the lover, he is
usually a heartbreaker, because he is able to turn on enough of the 1.1
charm to captivate his victims; but his subsequent indifference leaves
them miserable and mystified.
If he's carrying on with more than one girl at a time, he may nonchalantly
tell them about each other. He'll get perverse enjoyment from their
Some (not all) 1.2 women are bluntly masculine in behavior. However, when
we find the 1.2 aloofness accompanied by femininity and beauty, the
combination devastates men.
A young man was successfully playing a 1.1 love-em-and-leave-em game until
he met a No Sympathy girl. He found her icy beauty and standoffish
attitude an intriguing challenge to his talents. Surely, he convinced
himself, beneath that glacial exterior there is a warm heart. He was
confident of ultimate victory. But he'd met his match-a better games
player. She accepted his attentions for a while (in a go-away-closer
manner) before casually dropping him. Bewildered and crestfallen, he
dropped downscale. He recovered enough to become successful in his field,
but he retained a beautiful sadness about the loss of his only "true love"
until years later when he became acquainted with the tone scale.
He states his views abruptly. If you disagree with him, that's too bad.
He'll probably ignore you. He appears strong. If he's ambitious, he's
often successful (by certain standards, anyway), because he'll mercilessly
stomp on anyone to get what he wants.
His super-confidence usually attracts lower-tone persons to him. They
think, "Here's a man who really knows what he's doing." But before long,
they find themselves confused and upset by his attitude and they wonder:
"How can he be so heartless?" But he maintains his frosty, unsmiling
attitude toward those less fortunate. He's a mixture of the blunt "I'm
too good for them" of the 1.5 and the self-conscious ego of the 1.1.
He may sometimes be an exhibitionist, in which case he'll embarrass
everyone around him; but he couldn't care less. His own insensitivity
makes it almost impossible for him to feel embarrassment himself-or to
understand it in others.
He may own a great deal or little; but he will have the 1.5's attitude
"It's mine!" about anyone's possessions. So he can be quite unscrupulous
about appropriating the property, time or money of other people.
While this tone is higher than Sympathy (he's more alive and more
capable), the person who remains at 1.2 is extremely aberrated. Instead
of needing to sympathize, he can't. Callously immune to pleas for pity or
understanding, he lives in his locked-up world between forced "niceness"
and smashing hate. If you tell him of some difficulty, he replies, "Well,
you got yourself into it." He refuses to help, "You made your bed. Now
lie in it."
He usually ignores communications from other people-except those close to
his own tone. If you're telling him something, he may tap his foot
impatiently or otherwise rush you, unless the subject matter is scandalous
or turbulent enough (he's fascinated with stories of violence).
ANGER IN ABSENTIA
Often we see this person act bold or angry in absentia. Unable to throw
his Anger straight at someone, he expresses it indirectly. He says, "They
can go fly a kite," but he says it to someone else. I've even seen the No
Sympathy utter sneering asides to a third person in front of the person
he's talking about.
Once I saw a 1.2 waiting in line at the bank. Annoyed at the delay, he
started loudly remarking to the room at large: "They sure have a bunch of
cretins working here. What's the delay anyhow? Did they wait until the
place filled up so they could all go out for coffee?"
This indirect Anger is a characteristic peculiar to No Sympathy. A 1.5 on
a rampage would blast the bank teller directly. A 1.1 would make critical
remarks after leaving the bank. No Sympathy, trapped between bravado and
cowardice, makes the negative remarks, but not in direct confrontation.
AS A FRIEND
You'll never develop a close, mutual understanding with 1.2. He can't
share your joys or comfort you in the boo-hoos. He may forget to call you
if he breaks a date; he may unexpectedly depart for Hong Kong without
saying good-bye. He gives no thought to amenities. Inconsiderate to an
extreme, he operates like a horse with blinders seeing only the path ahead
of him unaware of the upsets and wretchedness he creates.
If he bothers to cultivate your friendship at all, he's probably using
"I ONLY WANT TO KNOW ENOUGH TO DESTROY"
Each tone has its awakening point-some acceptable activity that permits
the person to fully dramatize the characteristics of his tone. When an
individual finds a compatible profession which allows him the full play of
his emotional tone (with public sanction), he usually operates effectively
If the 1.2 finds his way into the field of journalism, he can become a
crackerjack expose writer. Such work calls for the guile of the 1.1 and
the impartial hatred of the 1.5. The guiding attitude is: "I only want to
know enough to destroy." The expose writer, operating with disarming
friendliness to get the confidence of his victims, prides himself on his
ability to ferret out the "real truth." Using the spying talents of the
1.1, he can start with a hint of a story and carefully piece together
elusive facts, rumors and reports extracted from informers.
He blatantly insists on ethics and morals for others, although his own
destructive actions are excused with: "The public deserves to know the
One such writer says he resorts to flagrant impersonations in order to get
information or documents. He considers that the end always justifies the
means, because "democracy entitles people to know; it is to the public
Waiving responsibility for any harmful result, he asserts that a good
journalist must absolutely never worry about the aftermath of the news
he's reporting. "Use any guile you can, bluff your way along if
necessary, but get the facts. Then report them, good or bad, to the
public without concern over the cons. We must satisfy the public's right
to know. To do otherwise, would mean the destruction of free journalism."
His biased viewpoint is close enough to the truth that it is believed and
accepted by many intelligent people. We should know, however, that
low-tone people selectively report only low-tone "news," the sordid and
sensational activities of a small minority. They actually do not see
uptone, high survival activities.
You could take a survey in middle-class suburbia any evening and you'd
hardly find anybody who was committing murder, rape, robbery or scandal.
Instead, you'd probably find Mom at the PTA meeting engaged in a warm
debate about hot lunches, Dad failing asleep over the newspaper and Junior
eating a pound of cookies, watching TV, listening to the blast of a stereo
and doodling in the margins of his history book.
"But none of this is news," the journalist tells us. It's an interesting
commentary on the tone of our whole society that the word "news" has come
to mean mostly low-scale sensationalism.
LIVING BY ROTE
It always seemed to me as if Beverly studied other people to find out how
she should react herself. She was like a teen-ager at his first formal
dinner, watching everyone else to see which fork to use.
On the day of her marriage, she asked me, "I never could figure out
weddings. Are they supposed to be somber like church or fun like a party
"I think it depends on how you feel yourself," I said.
"But I don't feel anything. I don't know how to act."
As she matured, she gradually acquired the accepted social gestures, but
there was never any spontaneous originality or graciousness. Once she
said to me: "My husband says I'm not sensitive enough. I never seem to
know when people are upset or disturbed about something. I guess this is
true, but how am I supposed to know what's going on in someone else's
I never could understand her strange uninvolvement with life until I
became familiar with the tone scale. She was so thoroughly walled in at
1.2 that she experienced no natural responses. It was necessary to
acquire them, by rote, from others.
The good-looking young man sat mute, expressionless. Throughout the long
trial he showed no emotion, no worry, no tears. When the jury convicted
him (on circumstantial evidence) of the brutal sex slaying of a young
girl, he still showed no response. Many people wondered if he was really
guilty. Former neighbors said, "I can't imagine him doing anything so
violent. He always seemed such a quiet fellow."
I didn't know the man was guilty either; but I knew from his tone that he
was capable of such a crime.
Not all 1.2s are sex killers (you might also find on this tone the crusty
dowager who doesn't even believe in sex), but such killers are usually in
He's a sadist. He likes to maim and injure for kicks. He's the kid who
picked the wings off the fly. He takes pleasure in hurting someone who
lies helpless. Incapable of the aggressive brutality of the 1.5, he
operates behind the scenes (Nazi war crimes and cruel treatment of war
prisoners were examples of 1.2). His balance of secrecy and brutality is
seen in clandestine crimes where there is little chance of retaliation.
Should you attempt to call down a 1.2 for his heartless actions, he'll be
unmoved: "I do what I do. If that bothers you, it's your problem." He's
afraid to know what others are feeling because he must avoid
responsibility for the effect he creates on them. His unpredictable
actions may be unsettling to others. But, of course, "That's tough."
The 1.1 often pretends to be sympathetic, understanding, or even griefy
(to achieve some covert ends), but the 1.2 seldom bothers with such
deception. He turns an indifferent back on someone else's weaknesses or
troubles. Paradoxically, however, he will fully expect his own harmful
acts to be understood, overlooked or forgiven.
At this level you often see a stubborn refusal to talk. He sulks in
silence, refusing to listen to others unless they are encouraging his own
To No Sympathy there is only one viewpoint: his own.
Let's get out in the open now.
Chapter 11 - ANGER (1.5)
Anger; 1) a feeling of extreme displeasure, hostility, indignation, or
exasperation toward someone or something, & rage, wrath, ire.
-American Heritage Dictionary
Bristling with a case of permanent distemper, he rants, raves, rages,
seethes, fumes, blames and complains.
He's the neighborhood crank who kicks the kids off the vacant lot in the
middle of the ball game. He's the impatient driver who starts honking a
millisecond after the stop light changes and shouts obscenities out the
car window. He's the tyrant father who berates and belittles the child.
He's the boss who keeps the whole office staff in terror. He's the wife
beater. The rapist.
His game is stopping things. When he isn't boiling over, he's simmering.
The 1.5 tone ranges from seething resentment at the bottom, through
expressed bad temper, up to a smashing rage on the top.
"I'M RIGHT WHENEVER I'M WRONG"
This one tells you what's wrong with things; that's all he tells you.
You're wrong; they're wrong; it's wrong. The only thing he never says is
"I'm wrong." He's always right-even when he's wrong. Don't try to confuse
him with facts.
This isn't the only tone trying to make others wrong (every tone below 2.0
does it one way or another), but the 1.5 is direct about it. You always
know where you stand with him; you're wrong, of course, just by being
ALL REALITY IS PERVERTED
Did you ever hear an Angry man tell the truth? I once tried to imagine
how a man and wife could have a real fight if they spoke only the truth,
without generalities and exaggerations. The usual argument goes something
HE: "When are you ever going to learn to cook? This food tastes
SHE: "You're always criticizing my cooking. You never appreciate all
the work I do for you."
HE: "Sure I do. I'm always telling you what a good wife you are."
SHE: "You do not! You don't even love me!" (Exits slamming door)
HE: "Women! They're impossible!"
If you removed all the generalities from this dispute and substituted
nothing but facts, it would sound something like this:
HE: "The gravy is a bit thin tonight."
SHE: "That's the fiftieth time you've criticized my cooking. In fact, on
one hundred and seventy-eight occasions during our marriage you showed a
lack of appreciation for my efforts."
HE: "That's true. However, I've complimented you three hundred and
seventy eight times."
SHE: "By my count, there were only three hundred and fourteen genuine
compliments and fifty-seven implied approvals. The seven additional
compliments you claim, apparently did not seem like compliments to me.
This imbalance of agreement leads me to believe that you don't love me."
HE: "That woman! Forty-three thousand two hundred and eighty-seven times
I have been unable to comprehend and converse intelligently with her."
A fight without a bit of untruth just isn't a fight. No producer would
buy that script.
"I AM SOMEBODY"
His oversized ego and aggressiveness frequently win him a position as
boss. He appears to be a man of action, but usually he merely creates a
flurry that's mostly noise. When the dust settles, we can see that little
Since his blustering distemper thrives best in a climate of emergencies,
he frequently creates them.
He knows exactly how to handle people: "Tell them off," "I say, shoot em
all," "You gotta be tough to get along in this world."
The angry person is hung up on obedience.
I once worked for a company owned by a 1.5. He was fanatic about
cleanliness and order, so when he was expected in town, the whole office
force scurried around spiffing up the place.
On one such visit, the big boss marched through the halls glancing into
rooms until he came to the empty office of the sales manager where he
noticed a hat lying on the desk. Erupting in rage, he screamed: "What's
the matter with these idiots? What do they think we have coat closets
He continued his virulent outburst as he picked up the hat, slammed open
the window and slung the offending headgear out of the twenty-first story
of the building. Just as the sales manager returned to his office with
one of the company's biggest clients, the client's hat caught in the
breeze and sailed off like a glorious kite across the city of Detroit.
The company lost a client.
ON THE JOB
High-tone creative people don't want to work for a 1.5. Anger is dedicated
to driving them downscale and killing all creativeness. In addition to
demands for obedience, he uses threats, punishment and alarming lies to
dominate. He gives enigmatic, incomplete orders, and after the job is
done he criticizes by saying, "I didn't tell you to do it that way."
A friend of mine told me about showing a presentation to his 1.5 boss who
said, "That's all wrong! Do this. Change that."
After my friend made all of the indicated changes, he returned the
proposal for approval. This time the boss yelled: "Where on earth did you
get these stupid ideas?"
In business the 1.5 will not delegate responsibility to subordinates. He
tries to keep control of everything while complaining that "no one can do
anything for himself around here. I have to do it all."
Because of his inability to give clear, understandable orders, and because
of his constant threatening interference, the 1.5's subordinates become
confused people-lacking in confidence and ability. They've been wrong so
often that most of them end up stuck in Fear, Grief or Apathy. At best,
they'll become 1.1s.
Anger's underlying obsession is a desire to make people remain in one
place. The angry parent says, "Stop running," "Stop doing that." Too
civilized to actually kill people usually), the 1.5 tries to reduce them
to Apathy. After he succeeds, he attempts to straighten things out by
I once knew a 1.5 boss who whipped his people into frenzied activity
("Let's get some action here")-the staff members were nervous and busy-but
little was ever accomplished. He went away for a month, however, and the
entire atmosphere changed. People were punctual, cheerful, relaxed and at
least twice as much work was accomplished.
SMASH AND DESTROY
The death-talker who plans revolts is a 1.5. He's going to save the
country (by destroying it). He won't listen to a constructive plan unless
he can turn it to destruction. Here we find warmongers and dictators.
He spreads dour and terrible news and generally won't pass on good news.
He prefers to spread tidings of alarm. He asserts that all is about to be
destroyed and that destruction alone can prevent destruction from taking
place. Sounds like madness, doesn't it? It is.
I read an underground newspaper which was handed out to Ann Arbor high
school students. In the middle of a "peace" article, it said, "We'll stop
war, even if we have to fight to do it."
The 1.5 will destroy any and all ethics (as will anyone from here on down
the scale). He's actively dishonest. I read another underground
newspaper published by an anarchist group which said: "For too long now,
sisters and brothers have been getting ripped off in this community. The
criminal element has run wild like a pack of mad dogs, busting and
harassing our people at will. It's time we got it together enough so our
culture has some 'police protection.' In other words, we need some
protection against the police (pigs). The LSD trip is one way to get this
together ... The first thing to be done is arming and training of each
affinity group ... The M-1 carbine is the ideal weapon for situations we
are likely to encounter."
The article went on to suggest regular target practice, exercises in gun
cleaning and more. The rest of the paper consisted of a "drug market
report" giving prices and quality of drugs currently on the local market.
In typical 1.5 conduct, this group would destroy the enemy" (organized
police forces) with guns and its own participants with drugs.
People will let themselves be led by someone who is in the next level up
on the scale. Therefore, all of the gullible souls in the Fear band can
be easily influenced and pushed into action by the 1.5.
SENSE OF HUMOR
His sense of humor (if you can call it that) consists of laughter at very
painful misfortunes. Fall down and break your neck and the 1.5 will think
His real "pleasure" in life comes from venting his Anger; he enjoys being
dangerous. He describes with relish how he "really told them off" or
"busted him in the nose."
At this position on the tone scale we find total unreasoning "bravery." He
gets his kicks from taking high risks-especially toward destruction of
other people and things. Many war heroes (but not all) operated on
nothing more than the false bravado of the 1.5, this, of course, looks
pretty awesome to the cowardly tones below it.
If you've ever experienced a moment of rage when it was tremendously
satisfying to smash a plate or slam a door, you can understand this tone.
Rage is the high side of 1.5 and if a person is here chronically, smashing
things is his form of pleasure.
"I OWN PEOPLE"
Not particularly interested in viewpoints unless they fortify his own, he
usually shuts off the other person's conversation by interrupting or
refusing to listen. Once he decides you shouldn't be what you are or do
what you're doing, he accepts no excuse or explanation.
While working for the company I mentioned earlier (owned by the
1.5), 1 heard this story about one of our young engineers: He was on
vacation, but came to the office to pick up a paycheck. Not knowing
the owner was in town, he wore a pair of slacks and a wildly colorful
sport shirt. To his alarm, he stepped out of the elevator directly in
front of the big boss. Scowling at the casual apparel, the boss snarled,
"Young man, do you work for me?"
Demonstrating mental agility and a high survival instinct, the engineer
promptly replied, "No, sir. I'm on the wrong floor."
Quickly wheeling around, he vanished down the stairway.
If you leave a message with him, know that it will produce a different
result than the one you intended. Tell the 1.5 to have the janitor wash
the windows and he'll pass this on as a threat: "Boy, you're in trouble
with the front office. If you don't get those windows cleaned you're out
of a job."
Fiercely possessive of people and belongings, he'll actually destroy his
own property if threatened. The child when someone tries to take a toy
away screams, "It's mine!" In Anger a child will often destroy his toys
rather than be forced to share them.
AS A PARENT
Here's the old-time Victorian father who rules with an iron hand. Easily
upset by noise, clutter or enthusiastic play, the Anger person treats a
child brutally, sometimes with heavy corporal punishment, as he tries to
force the youngster into a mold with pain. (Incidentally, lower-tone
parents will get angry at their children when they don't dare express this
emotion to anyone else.)
I once saw an entire family driven into mutual covertness under the
domination of a 1.5 father. This father firmly believed that every
growing child should start each day with a huge bowl of oatmeal. Although
his four boys soon despised oatmeal, Father was unrelenting. During all
the growing-up years, there was an unvarying morning ritual: Father
supervised his wife's preparation of the cereal and watched her serve it
to the boys. Satisfied, he left for work. As soon as his car pulled out
of the driveway each morning, however, four untouched bowls of oatmeal
were dumped into the dog's dish and Mother started cooking bacon and eggs.
I never did learn how the dog survived on this peculiar diet.
Any warmth or affection from a 1.5 would indicate that he'd changed tone.
It's traditional for rampaging, conquering armies to rape. We hear of the
mad criminal who rapes. Today's 1.5 may be too civilized for actual rape,
but he takes his woman with unfeeling abruptness, as tender as the bull
storming through the barnyard. There's no smooth talk, no kindness, no
consideration. The 1.5 woman uses sex as punishment, by withholding it.
He may be blatantly unfaithful. Although he's a poor lover, he'll never
believe it. He's convinced (along with 1.1 and 1.2) that he's God's gift
He's all right, I guess, if you happen to like nuzzling with a barracuda.
"Stop! the movie director screamed at the actors, "For God's sake,
will you do this scene right?"
A psychology book described this director's behavior as a "mixture of
emotions: anger, disgust, and impatience." Actually, the mixture is just
several predictable characteristics of Anger, rather than separate
emotions. They're all part of the 1.5 package.
If you suggest something fun to a 1.5, he'll snap, "I've got no time for
that." He prefers to complain. No matter how much he acquires, he
experiences no real enjoyment from it; he feels he deserves more.
He blames someone for every defeat. He's a grudge collector. If you say
"I'm sorry, I take it all back," he won't let you take it back. He needs
his grudges. They're a reserve Supply of fuel to throw on his ever
Armed with blind certainty, he's the fool who rushes in while the angels
are still checking with their attorneys. If someone says "you're wrong,"
he's at 1.5 or 2.0. No other tone level will say this so bluntly.
The high-tone person drops to Anger when he's stopped; but he recovers
quickly and forgets it. He's only in trouble if he makes a major decision
or tries to fix something while he's still in this tone.
I was teaching the tone scale to a class in England once when I asked the
students to give me examples of low-scale behavior. One student described
watching his neighbor try to start the car one morning. The neighbor
turned the key, pumped the accelerator; but the car refused to start. He
lifted the hood, puttered around inside and tried again. Still no
response. After some time at this fruitless endeavor, the man flew into a
passionate fit. He opened the trunk, grabbed a big hammer, and ran to the
front of the car. Screaming, ranting, raving, he began beating the hammer
on the hood of the car ... again and again.
That's one way to fix things. Permanently.
Chapter 12 - PAIN (1.8)
If you've ever taken care of a fellow in pain, you know how demanding,
cranky and irritable a normally good-natured person can be.
Pain itself is not an emotion, but a perception that warns the individual
that his survival is threatened. However, there is a particular emotional
response to pain which occurs on a small way-stop between Anger and
A person cannot stay high-tone when he is in pain, so this is the level to
which he drops. His attention scatters; he wants to be elsewhere
(anywhere else); he's testy, snappish and impatient. He's fighting the
pain; but his mind is so scattered that he's completely ineffective.
Joe is cleaning the garage when a bee stings him. He makes a wild slap at
the bee, misses and knocks over an oil can. He picks up the oil can,
fumbles and drops it. Snarling, he lunges at the half-dead bee on the
work bench and hits his head on the open cupboard door. His comments
during this fiasco are unprintable.
Pain so interrupts a person's orderly control of his environment that he
fights it-with churlish, ill-natured thrusts. Extreme heat (one form of
pain) produces emotions in this band of the scale. We see this in the
person who climbs into a closed car on a hot summer day; he becomes
impatient and cantankerous. Those same hot summer days are the ones which
produce an eruption of riots and "crimes of passion."
An upscale person can tolerate more discomfort in the form of extreme
heat, cold, light or noise. The lower a person is on the scale, the lower
his pain tolerance. Grief considers everything painful (knowledge,
reality, experience and most sensations), so don't confuse him with 1.8
where pain is real and sharp and the emotion is much more alive. Grief
will complain of pain when his shoe pinches a little, whereas the hightone
person might not even consider the shoe uncomfortable.
We see many sports played across the level of 1.8 on the tone scale
(although the top athletes themselves are usually higher tone than this).
Ice hockey, for instance, is- essentially an Antagonism game that produces
frequent injuries. A player gets pushed against the boards; he drops to
1.8 and turns around clubbing with his stick at the offending opponent.
Another player gets hit, so he too swings. Soon the whole thing turns
into a donnybrook that sends half of the players to the penalty box.
It's easy to identify someone in this tone: splice together equal parts of
Anger and Antagonism, then sprinkle a little salt on the wound.
Chapter 13 - ANTAGONISM (2.0)
Antagonism: 1) Mutual resistance,- opposition, hostility- 2) The
condition of being an opposing principle, force or factor.
-American Heritage Dictionary
On leaving a luncheon party, a friend of mine heard a departing guest
gushing to the hostess: "This has been such a lovely lunch. I just can't
thank you enough . . .
The hostess queried dryly, "You can't?"
After my friend told this story, I indicated to him that his hostess was
at Antagonism. He was surprised by my quick evaluation; but he confirmed
it. The tip-off was not only the words used, but the occasion and manner
The primary characteristic of Antagonism is rebuttal. The emotion is
overt hostility. He never fields the ball; he always bats it back. He
twists facts to suit his Antagonism. He expresses verbal doubt.
Defending his own reality, he attempts to undermine the reality of others.
All of these characteristics were evident in the hostess who was unwilling
to accept a thank you with graciousness. Her challenging question was
expressing verbal doubt, trying to undermine a statement made by the
guest, twisting the facts by refusing to understand the guest's intention
and hurling the communication back.
That's getting high mileage out of two words. Right?
Antagonism is the place where Anger goes in his better moments and where
Boredom goes when provoked. The emotion is more alive than any tones
we've covered so far. We might find him sometimes amusing, but seldom
comfortable. This is the level of barbs and sarcastic word play. He
throws everything back at you. That's the quickest way to identify him.
He's openly resentful on the low side and mildly bantering on the high
While he can differentiate lower tones, he interprets all higher-tone
communications to be the same as his own. If you try to give him a
compliment, he turns it into an insult: "You did a great job here."
He says, "Yeah? What do you mean by that crack?"
He nags, threatens and bluntly criticizes. He thrives on an argument. He
challenges and cross-examines.
THE GAME IS THE THING
Two boys meet in a school yard: "What's your name?"
"What's it to you?"
"I can lick you, loud mouth."
"Yeah? Let's see you try."
Antagonism can't resist a dare. If you want him to do something, suggest
the opposite. If you want to sell him something, inform him that he can't
have it. Give him something to challenge. He will.
The best way to get him fired up is to give him a contest to win: "Bet you
can't get these done before two o'clock," or "Bill will probably get more
done than you." Competition is his game. He'll be persistent if there's a
chance to best the "enemy."
You zig; he must zag. He's the one who votes "no" when everyone else
votes "yes." He's the person who wants to go to the dog show when everyone
else wants to attend a concert. He must disagree. He must rebel. His
whole survival (he thinks) depends on finding and engaging an opponent.
Where Anger bluntly overrides you, the 2.0 prefers to debate about it.
(Anger doesn't bother arguing; he knows he's right). Antagonism
encourages a long argument in order to prove himself.
A high-tone person is not a blind follower. He often opposes the
group-think. But he does so only out of personal conviction and only for
a definite purpose. Antagonism, however, goes against others just for the
pleasure of going against.
He never plays for the fun of it; he only plays to win. It's serious. He
likes to dominate every activity; where he can't, he'll quit. If he can't
quit, he'll try to spoil it for others. He's a poor sport. In a card
game, he groans if he's given a bad hand; he's bitter if he loses a trick;
he blames others for his bad luck. When he wins, he gloats and brags.
He'll cheat if he dares. There's a driving compulsion to win at all
costs; it's winning, not playing, that counts. An upscale person enjoys
winning too; but he plays the game with a light, unserious touch ... and
it's OK if he loses.
At 2.0 the person is so convinced that he's either a victim or a victor
that you can't keep him from fighting his fellows (in a family or group)
unless you find a common enemy elsewhere for him to oppose.
IN THE FAMILY
As a spouse, the 2.0 receives love with suspicion. It's seriously
questioned ("How do I know you love me?"); he may even return it with
distaste or revulsion. Give him a tender pat on the cheek and he pushes
your hand away.
He's nagging and nervous about children and gives them a hard time.
If you marry a 2.0, don't expect a placid relationship. He only comes to
life at the chance of a good fight. If you refuse to fight, he carps and
picks away until he gets some response. He works on a higher-tone person
until he drags him down. He wants an opponent, not a partner.
His aggressiveness and competitive spirit frequently win him promotions;
but people won't like working for him. He'll give orders in the form of
threats: "Get this job done by the end of the week or you'll never see
that raise you're wanting."
Try to give him a job, and he'll argue about it: "Why don't we wait until
next month. This'll just bring us more headaches." He's a master at
inventing reasons why he shouldn't do a job.
How will 2.0 relay communication? Can you trust his reports? He does
better than any of the tones we've met so far, letting a certain amount of
communication come through accurately. However, he deals mostly in
hostile and threatening conversation, and he will likely omit more
creative or constructive news while passing on the destructive news.
Instead of telling you the research department finally solved the problem
of the leaking whatsis, he'll say, "Research has worked out something; but
they're running into a big hassle with production over how to do it."
Here is another tone that will laugh at the misfortune of others. He
enjoys hearing the brutal, cutting remark; but he has no ear for the
subtle or ludicrous humor enjoyed by higher-tone people.
When my oldest son was about four years old he was playing with a neighbor
girl who locked him in a closet and kept the door shut until he was in a
state of screaming hysteria. When I described the incident to a neighbor,
He's blunt, honest and tactless, The permanent chip on his shoulder can be
knocked off by a mosquito's breath.
* * *
We've made it through the worst of the obstacle course now. Antagonism is
the dividing line. Above it, a person is rational most of the time.
Below 2.0 the person is irrational a larger percentage of the time.
The irrationality of the downscale person is evident in his limited
viewpoint. He may be gullibly for, blindly against or forever indecisive;
but he's seldom flexible. Above this position, the person looks at things
from many different viewpoints.
Let's mosey out into the sunshine.
Chapter 14 - BOREDOM (2.5)
You go to the beach for a two-week vacation. Sometimes it takes most of
the journey to quit worrying about whether you turned off all the stove
burners and whether the dog will feel heartbroken at the kennel. It may
be another day or so before you stop waking up with the panicky feeling
that you're late for work. Finally you relax and drift along with the
mildly pleasant experience of no pressures or demands. You sleep late,
swim, fish, loaf. When everything becomes so calm that the big event of
the day is a stroll to the general store to see what's going on you've
arrived at Boredom.
It's a pleasant state where one is unconcerned about the larger issues of
the world. Most of us, however, soon reach a saturation point on this
level and start looking forward to getting involved again,
Not so with the chronic Boredom person. His biggest purpose in life is to
kill time; he's an expert at it.
About the only mistake you can make with this tone is putting people here
who don't belong.
Sometimes a person gives the appearance of going up to Boredom when
actually he is still in his usual tone with the volume turned down.
Nothing is happening which permits him to dramatize his chronic tone.
An Apathy person may tell you almost anything was boring, because it takes
such an impact to create any effect on him. Grief will complain that a
funny movie was boring, simply because she found no occasion to cry. When
the 1.1 is not getting enough attention to ignite his spark plugs he
affects a sophisticated, hypercritical boredom: "Why are we hanging around
here? Let's go where there's some action."
Such people are bored (by most definitions) because nothing is occurring
that turns on the adrenaline; but they are not at 2.5 on the tone scale.
The Boredom person is not complaining, not impatient. He can endure it.
Let's look in on a high school classroom ....
"Dear Marcy, I've never been so bored. If this guy doesn't shut up pretty
soon, I'm going to have a screaming fit! He's talking about grasshopper
legs, for gosh sakes! Like, wouldn't you think you'd learn something sexy
Three seats behind our letter writer, a lanky sixfooter slumps in light
slumber. Across the row, a scowling youth swings his foot impatiently.
All of them will say they are bored; but none of them are really at
Boredom on the scale. The real 2.5 is sitting in the back of the room.
He doodles in his notebook. He watches a fly explore the top of the desk.
He wonders if the instructor is wearing a wig and decides it doesn't
matter. He examines dust particles drifting through a shaft of sunlight.
He thinks briefly about grasshoppers and limply resolves to read that
Let's turn up the volume on the true tone of the students by introducing
an emergency. A huge rock smashes through the window and thuds on the
teacher's desk. Papers fly. A vase of flowers crashes to the floor. The
teacher jumps back. A chilling wind whips through the room. A girl
screams. Another bursts into tears. Several students laugh. One of them
rushes up to see if the instructor is hurt. A 1.1 affects concern while
mentally planning how he'll embellish the story later. Each of them turns
on strong in his chronic tone. In the back of the room, Boredom placidly
watches everything. He realizes this might be serious; but he doesn't
panic. Looking out the window, he wonders who threw the rock; but he
decides it really doesn't matter. It's been an interesting afternoon.
He's "well adjusted." The emotion is pleasurable. His attention is
leisurely and slightly scattered. He wants to be entertained. He likes a
certain amount of pleasant, random activity. He can occupy himself for
hours, days, years with the most trivial matters. He'll wash the car,
trim the shrubs, play a game of cribbage, watch the ball game on TV.
Although some large ideas may flicker through his mind from time to time,
he won't be the guy who invents a new fuel to replace gasoline, and he
won't join the revolution movement.
This tone is marked by a purposelessness in living.
He's careless, indifferent, mildly pleasant. You'll probably like him.
He won't be attacking you, trying to undermine you, warning you, taking
care of you, or sopping all over you. He won't try to draw you into his
game; he's not even playing much of a game. He's just watching it.
Boredom is somewhat negligent about facts; but you'll find him comfortable
and amiable. He won't pick a fight because he doesn't care whether or not
you agree with him. If you introduce some static, he'll say, "Let's not
He makes pointless, idle conversation. Although this easygoing guy may be
able to tell you all about the neighbors, his mild gossip is never
vicious. He's somewhat careless as to whether his communications are
received or understood. If you try to clarify something, he'll toss it
away: "Oh, it's not important."
He accepts people, not necessarily because he's interested in them, but
because it would be too much trouble to do otherwise. Ask him whether he
thinks you should hire Mertin for the job and he'll say, "He's OK, I
The 2.5 devaluates emergencies. If somebody comes along and says, "The
house is burning down. Hurry! Do something!" he says, "Well, now, don't
get all worked up about it."
He collects comfortable platitudes with which to dismiss all emergencies
and shed all responsibilities. Tell him you're trying to find a way to
make more money, and he'll shrug and discard the whole subject with:
"Well, it takes money to make money."
He doesn't feel much need to do anything about anything.
Ask him what he's been doing lately; he'll probably say, "Oh, nothing
much. Same old thing." He putters and loafs. He collects useless
information and trivia. He may remember every baseball score since the
beginning of time; but won't master a new subject that could improve his
He'll never achieve greatness unless it's thrust upon him.
SENSE OF HUMOR
There's a moth-eaten old joke about two Britishers talking: "I was so
sorry to hear that you buried your wife yesterday."
"Well, I had to, old man. She was dead, you know."
The 2.5 will laugh merrily at that one (he'll probably repeat it too).
His sense of humor is so literal that he likes the groaners. His attempts
at humor will include cheerful, but corny puns and platitudes-seldom
original-which he will repeat predictably over and over: "Long time no
see," "I shoulda stood in bed," and "Well, shut my mouth." The witty,
original puns are usually the product of a 1.1. Boredom can't be bothered
thinking up anything original.
I was selecting ears of corn from a wheelbarrow in front of a farm house
when the owner strolled over. "Looks like nice corn," I said.
"Yup. Fresh too. Only been picked less than an hour. I know that for a
fact," he leaned forward and with a conspiratorial grin, confided: "cause
I picked it myself-that's how I know."
Chuckling in appreciation of his own nimble humor, he bagged up the corn
and handed me change. This agreeable exchange represents the height of
original humor that will be attempted by a 2.5.
Not exactly a rapier wit, but a pleasant fellow.
THE LOVE DEPARTMENT
As a father he's OK. He has a friendly tolerance of children, although he
never gets too involved in their affairs.
If you like a passionate relationship, scintillating repartee and
hilarious high jinks, don't hook up with Boredom. He's far too negligent
to pursue you with any burning passion. He won't even lose sleep worrying
about whether or not you love him.
If he wants to watch Wild Will Sixgun on television, he'll simply turn it
on. He's indifferent about getting your agreement or support.
Hardly the lordly cavalier; but he'll keep the grass mowed.
Although he doesn't look as active as many lowertone people, he'll drift
along fairly well on a routine job, and he'll be much better liked by his
fellow employees. He's a poor candidate for manager because he's
incapable of getting others enthused and too careless of support or
participation. As an idea man, don't count on him. His decision making
is indifferent. Ask him, "How would you like to organize a big sales
campaign?" He'll shrug and say, "I don't mind."
Not persistent, too idle, concentration poor, he's willing to do the job.
Boredom is a sort of high-tone Apathy. But there's flippancy in Boredom.
It's much more alive, carefree and extroverted.
This is the nicest person we've met so far on our trip up the scale. If
you find it hard to remember any Boredom people, it's because they so
seldom say or do anything memorable.
He's a man of unused ambition, pleasant and easygoing, who won't set the
world on fire-or even light a match.
He's neither contented nor discontented. He mostly wants to be
entertained. He's a spectator.
Chapter 15 - CONSERVATISM (3.0)
Conservatism: The disposition in politics or culture to maintain the
existing order and to resist or oppose change or innovation.
-The American Heritage Dictionary
He's not superman.
You'll probably like him, unless you're trying to bring about some drastic
reform. Being a don't-rock the-boat kind of a person, he squelches
enthusiasm and inventiveness.
More alive than any lower tone, it's still not the best place to park.
But park he does. Try to sell, inspire or shift him and he'll say, "I'll
have to think it over carefully. We'll talk about it later." Another
Ruled by caution, poised, conforming, restrained he's a tolerant guy who
never swings into action without careful consideration.
He probably won't make a fortune or go broke. His money will be in 3%
municipal bonds while his more adventurous friends are investing in the
volatile new oil stock.
He plods along like the famous tortoise, enjoying life in a rather routine
and unimaginative way.
If you see a fellow gussied up in the newest clothing and wearing the
latest haircut, you can be certain he's not a 3.0. No trend-setter, he
wears new styles only after they become common. He does nothing to make
himself stand out. He abhors attention directed at him, preferring to be
one of the crowd.
He's a moral person who follows the ethics in which he was educated.
Count on him to be honest in his dealings; but don't expect him to mention
that your new hairdo looks awful. He won't. He tells little social white
lies," and withholds anything he thinks might hurt someone's feelings.
I met a typical Conservatism person recently who told me that his wife
just purchased some new dress fabric which he considered too gaudy.
"The trouble is," he said, "I couldn't get enthused about it and she
suspected I didn't like it;- but I wouldn't hurt her feelings for the
This is the kind of problem that a 3.0 lives with.
"WE'RE ALL MORE OR LESS RIGHT"
He usually avoids arguments. Instead, he listens to everyone's comments
and decides that "We are all more or less right." While maintaining his
own viewpoint, he is able to see both sides of an issue more easily than
any of the lower tones. When his fellow workers are engaged in a gripe
session, he'll say, "Well, on the other hand, I can see what management's
up against. They've got their problems too."
He speaks casually, with reserve, preferring small talk about weather and
good roads, rather than massive ideas.
If you tell him you're going to quit your job, sell your house and drift
around the world in a sampan, the 3.0 will listen and, while he doesn't
suppress or ridicule you, he'll use all of his social graces to persuade
you out of it. He'll argue in favor of safety, security and what he
considers better survival actions.
RELAY OF COMMUNICATIONS
"Things are going fine. No problems." This is the communication he
prefers to pass on. He's fairly dependable as a relay, but if you give
him a communication much higher or lower on the scale, he'll tone it down.
He'll be suspicious of highly creative ideas and he minimizes sensational
or bad ones.
I was listening to some men talking about the Indian fishermen taking
salmon from the Great Lakes. One fellow (1.5) was saying, "If we don't
stop those Indians, there won't be any salmon left."
The 3.0 refused to take sides: "Well, I think it's difficult to say when
you're not personally involved. I'm not conversant enough to form an
opinion on that. I'm sure there's something to be said for both sides."
ON THE JOB
If you want somebody to dream up a bold, new advertising campaign, don't
choose a 3.0; he's not gutsy enough. If you need somebody in accounting to
hold extravagances to a minimum, he'll be superb. He's willing to work on
planning and goals, provided the end results are foreseeable. His
persistence is fairly good if the obstacles aren't too large. He's
content to do the job. If skilled in his line, his work will be highly
satisfactory. You can count on him to accept a limited amount of
The 3.0 attitude is highly admired and embraced by scientific circles: a
careful, tentative, non-sensational advancement of data and theory.
Suppose you're boss and you plan to fire someone in your company. The 3.0
will prefer not to do it personally; he doesn't like to hurt people.
Don't confuse him with Sympathy on this (the .9 will try to talk you out
of it: "Oh, he isn't all that bad. We should give him more of a chance.
He's really trying"). The 3.0 is more likely to see the logic of firing
the person although, if he is required to handle it, he'll gloss over
everything to avoid creating a scene or an upset. Instead of saying,
"Look man, you just aren't producing," he'll murmur something consoling
about budget cutbacks and wish the employee all the best.
Don't put him in charge of investigating someone. He shuns prying and
probing. Remarkably incurious, he strongly believes you should respect
the rights of others.
IN THE FAMILY
Children have a good chance of becoming better adults with a conservative
parent. He's interested in children, and rather than force his ideas on
them, he'll encourage them to express their own. He'll be shocked at his
son wearing wild clothes and his daughter going without a bra; but his
rebukes (if any) will be mild Although he will give advice (conservative,
naturally), he'll permit his children to select their own friends,
life-styles and occupations with a minimum of interference.
You could do much worse than marry a 3.0 (and most people do). He'll
receive your affection warmly, although he may be somewhat inhibited in
expressing his own. You can be sure he'll never serenade you in Central
Park (or she'll never wear that frontless, backless, topless creation
that's currently the rage), but his (or her) love will be constant.
Two 3.0s married to each other will probably stay married and be faithful.
This is the level of contentment.
If you try to convince him there is life on Saturn, he'll say, "You're
entitled to your opinion. I won't say it's impossible, but I'd want to
see more proof before I believe it completely."
Conservatism doesn't think anything should be done for the first time.
He's a follower, not an explorer.
Hold that line ...
Chapter 16 - INTEREST AND ENTHUSIASM (3.5-4.0)
Our new high school math teacher was speaking carefully, "This is supposed
to be a true story," he said. "A man, sitting in church with his wife,
fell asleep and dreamed he was living in the time of the French
Revolution. He was captured and brought before the guillotine. Death
seemed imminent. At just this moment his wife noticed his closed eyes and
drooping head, so she picked up his straw hat and tapped the back of his
neck. Dreaming that this was the blade of the guillotine coming down on
him, he died right there in his sleep.
"Now, how do you know this is not really a true story?"
The teacher laughed as he watched us catch on, one by one, to his trick
story. If the man died in his sleep who would know what he was dreaming?
Our introduction to this handsome young man was certainly unusual. The
girls were delighted to be in his class, of course, but we were somewhat
apprehensive about that formidable looking geometry textbook.
To our surprise, however, he ignored the text for over a week. Instead,
he spent each class period telling us baffling stories for which we were
to find loopholes or solutions. This was school? Soon we were eagerly
anticipating his class and wondering what kind of posers we would get each
day. After a week of grappling with strange puzzles-taking them apart,
finding flaws, arriving at solutions-we were convinced that problem
solving could be fun. By the time he finally opened the geometry
textbook, we were interested.
That's how a topscale person handles others - by bringing them up to a
level where they become interested. He uses reasoning rather than the
emotional persuasions used by lower tones ("Do your work or you flunk").
At the top of the scale we find a band ranging from Interest (amusement)
to Enthusiasm (cheerfulness). I've placed them in one chapter because
they're similar in characteristics. The 4.0 is just a little more so.
Anyway, when we meet either one of them, it's such a welcome experience we
don't want to waste our time nit-picking about which tone he's in.
One can become interested in various subjects, of course, at any level of
the tone scale. He may be interested in anything from learning Swahili to
looking at dirty pictures; but this doesn't place him at 3.5 on the scale.
The high-tone person takes an active interest in subjects related to
survival. There's more action, more involvement and more creativity.
He can envision far-reaching plans and ideas that project toward a better
future for himself and all mankind. His interests may be more novel and
of broader scope than those of the lower-tone person.
He's more of a participant than a spectator. If he takes up sports, he'll
excel because of his fast reaction time.
The 3.5 is capable of maintaining a strong, sustained interest; he doesn't
take up something and drop it a week later (as we see in lower tones).
I once knew a young man who became interested in bird-watching. He was so
enthused with the subject that he learned to recognize every bird call as
soon as he heard it, and within a few months became an expert. Later this
same young man studied karate until he earned the coveted black belt.
Before he was twenty years old he acquired two skills that would give him
pleasure and confidence for the rest of his life. I've known many people
twice his age who have dabbled in a dozen subjects without achieving such
proficiency in any of them.
One reason the 3.5 can put more attention onto any subject he's learning
is because he is less introverted. His attention is outside of himself;
he wants to be interested, rather than interesting.
This is the tone of the fellow who just won the Irish Sweepstakes (before
the income tax men arrive). He's eager, enthusiastic, cheerful, alive!
Before you get the picture of 4.0 as a perpetually grinning ape whom most
of us would find obnoxious (at least before the first cup of coffee in the
morning), 1 'd better explain that he is not constantly bubbling over
(that's more likely the phony bonhomie of the 1.1 or the strange,
hysterical glee that may occur on any low tone-even Apathy). Generally he
wakes up with a quiet sense of well-being and looks forward to carrying
out his plans for the future.
He's mobile on the scale-able to experience all emotions as the occasion
calls for them-although he's generally at the top with the volume turned
down to a good-natured cheerfulness.
He's an active person who inspires others to action. If he's not the boss
yet, he probably will be. He enjoys working and is willing to be
responsible for a large sphere of activity.
You won't find him in squalid quarters; he recognizes and enjoys the good
things in living. Here's a fully sane human being. He's free from having
to take sides. He finds no need to fight; but he definitely will rather
than tolerate injustices. Since he doesn't need approval from others, he
is able to do things courageously on a basis of personal conviction.
He can spend time with low-tone people without getting depressed,
compulsively sympathetic or cruel.
There was a San Francisco men's club which collected money and food each
year for a needy family in the community. One year, after such a family
was selected, Fred, an up-tone member of the club, said, "You know, I
don't mind helping this fellow, but I'd much rather see him earn his own
Fred followed up on his idea and learned that the impoverished man was
laid off, but sincerely wanted to work. With the cooperation of the other
members, Fred helped the man set up a lawn care business. The man soon
came upscale and started adding customers. Within two years he owned two
trucks, employed several helpers and ran a busy, thriving business-one
that benefited the whole community. That's upscale help.
Having no need to control or dominate people to satisfy his own ego, the
4.0 uses his enthusiasm and confidence to inspire others to reach higher
levels and do things for themselves. His tremendous personal power is a
calming influence to a worried or troubled area.
Because of his fast reaction time, he avoids accidents. He's excellent at
sports or any project he undertakes. He generally enjoys good health,
because he doesn't recklessly ignore the rules of good body care.
A high-tone person makes himself understood easily. He's capable of
communicating deeply-felt ideas, but he does so with discrimination. He
prefers dealing with constructive facts, rather than destructive ones.
While a lower-tone doom salesman is reciting all the shocking news, he
will be pointing to the survival activities occurring. He'll mention a
book that will help you make more money. He'll describe a new development
for making sturdier cars. H e prefers discussing solutions, rather than
clucking about the horribleness of it all.
He listens to others and understands them easily (provided the
communication is understandable and does not exceed his educational level)
and he can hear low-tone people without becoming upset, critical or
My son told me about an upscale teacher who periodically gave the students
a free discussion period in which they could make suggestions or comments
about the class. One day a girl peevishly complained, "I don't think you
let us talk enough."
Not finding it necessary to argue or defend himself, he replied calmly:
"Hmm. I think you're right. I often talk too much."
If a high-tone fellow delegates someone to give him a full report on a
situation, he'll expect truthful facts and, if possible, a suggestion for
rectifying any negative conditions. He will not accept a report based on
generalities, innuendoes and assumptions that merely concludes: "The world
is going to hell in a handbasket." The 3.5 will call such a person on the
carpet. He resents and strikes back at unnecessary "bad news" reports.
At 4.0 the person simply cuts a vicious or slanderous communication line.
He doesn't absorb it or relay it. If possible, he'll raise the tone of
the originator. Otherwise, he'll probably just cease accepting
communication from that person.
When the 3.5 gets mad at a newspaper for biased reporting, he'll write a
blistering letter to the editor. The 4.0 will most likely cancel his
subscription and look for a more upscale paper.
AS A FRIEND
His magnetic personality attracts people without effort, and he'll be
loved by almost everyone. Some low-tone types, however, will get upset
around 4.0 because they can't knock him down to their level. People who
can move easily on the tone scale will find him inspiring. His high tone
is contagious; they want to be around him so they can catch it themselves.
Be friends with him, hire him, elect him, promote him, work for him. You
can't go wrong.
If you are playing cards with him and accidentally expose your hand, he
won't look. He's honest. He doesn't subscribe to the
get-away-with-what-you-can philosophy. He actually refines ethics beyond
those demanded by his group. He doesn't need laws, rules or policies to
force him to be honest.
You can trust him with your money, your reputation or your wife.
ON THE JOB
A person who can assume no responsibility feels horrible.
"Full responsibility is a very light-hearted thing."
-L. Ron Hubbard,
Philadelphia Doctorate Course.
If Enthusiasm isn't chairman of the board, he should be. He enjoys his
work and takes large responsibilities easily. He's willing to take
command or take orders (although he'll rebel against executing
He works with persistence toward constructive goals. If someone tells him
it can't be done or "We don't have any," a person in this tone band will
bypass the obstructing individual and find another way to accomplish his
purpose. I observed a topscale man recently calling a New York supplier
to order materials for one of his machines. The supplier's order
department was manned by a Grief/Apathy person who said, "Well, I don't
know if you're ever going to get these supplies. We're out of them and
they've been on order for ages. That machine is obsolete now, you know."
"Are you telling me the company just stopped making supplies for the
machines that are out in the field?"
"Well, it's coming to that. We aren't getting our shipments like we used
"What am I supposed to do?"
"I don't know. You'll just have to get a new machine, I guess.
"Would I be able to trade this one in ?"
"Well, you won't get much money for it. After all, it's obsolete."
"This is ridiculous; my machine is still working fine."
"That's all I can tell you. There's nothing more I can do."
He hung up in disgust; but he didn't stay upset long.
Unwilling to accept this stop, he phoned another supplier who promptly
filled the order. A lower-tone person would have succumbed to the bad
news without question. The upscale guy just doesn't give up so easily.
He tends toward higher goals than people lower on the scale. If you hire
him, you'd better plan on promoting him; he won't settle for mediocrity.
While he's not grasping or greedy, he's more capable of owning than people
lower on the scale. He enjoys possessions, can easily make a fortune and
usually embraces plentiful goals of survival. Lower on the scale, we find
people who think they would like to have more money or more possessions
and sometimes they acquire them. More often, however, they cannot permit
themselves to own much. This is no problem to the high tone person. He
will realize that survival on a bare necessity level is unsafe, and it
will be intolerable to him. If it appears that he needs five hundred
dollars a month in order to provide the minimum needs for himself and his
family, he'll get busy and earn two thousand dollars a month.
He can tolerate larger effects on himself than lower-tone people. This
means that he may lose a fortune; but he's able to bounce back and earn
another one. Although he's frequently attacked by downscale people, he
fights such attacks (if necessary) and recovers easily.
LOVE AND FAMILY
If you can find such a spouse, take him (or her) and don't look back. You
must be doing something right.
Here at the highest level of the scale, we find constancy and a natural
instinct for monogamy. The 4-0 has a high enjoyment of sex; but a moral
reaction to it. Although he loves with a spontaneous and free exuberance,
we won't find the dissipated rouT at 4.0, because at this level a person
is more likely to sublimate the sexual drive into creative thought and
The 4.0 is extremely interested in children. He not only cares for their
mental and physical well-being, he is concerned about the society in which
they will live. He is interested in efforts that improve the culture, so
that youngsters will have a better chance for survival in the future.
THE EXPANDED SCALE
Ron Hubbard has plotted a second, expanded tone scale which goes below 0.0
and above 4.0. It relates to the spiritual entity, however, and to
understand it one must know and embrace the religious philosophy of
Scientology. One actually appears on both scales. But this book deals
with the human being, who will always be found somewhere between 0.0 and
4.0. A chart of the expanded scale is available to those who are
interested (see list in the back).
He's alive and he likes it. Neither falsely modest nor egotistically
inflated, he knows what he can do and has an honest evaluation of his own
worth. He enjoys being himself.
He's mobile on the tone scale. He can suffer a loss and bounce back
quickly. When he is deliberately stopped or suppressed, he fights with
fervor, although he holds no long-term grudges.
This fellow is no rubber stamp, but he'll follow orders without an
argument provided they do not compromise his own integrity. He's both
independent and cooperative. He can stay on good terms with others
without surrendering his own principles.
If he resolves to save money, lose weight or stop playing the horses,
he'll do it.
He's a lighthearted man with a free mind, capable of changing viewpoints
and looking at new concepts. He can act spontaneously and intuitively.
He's liable to follow his hunches-and be right.
Can you remember the last day of school? You walk out of the dreary
building. Gone are the deadlines, those tardy themes, the verb
conjugations, the heavy homework and the dull lectures. There's a
tremendous relief. You're so light you could float through the air with
the dandelion seeds. Nothing is serious; the future looks gloriously
bright. You feel magnanimous and the world is yours to explore, to love,
to play in and to laugh with.
That's the top of the scale.
You just can't buy that sort of thing at the corner drugstore.
Chapter 17 - SOME TIPS ON SPOTTING TONES
You will get the most benefit from the tone scale by using it on every
person you meet: business associates, neighbors, store clerks, club
members, relatives and friends. You begin by determining whether the
person is high or low. After that, spotting exact tone is easier (and
often unnecessary). The data in this chapter should help.
HOW DO YOU FEEL AFTER YOU ARE WITH HIM?
For at least a short time after exposure to a downscale person, the world
looks a bit grimmer and the future less exciting. The contagious good
humor of an UP-tone person leaves you happier and more optimistic.
Also, there's your instinctive sense the moment you meet a person for the
first time. As the young people say, you'll get "good vibes" or "bad
vibes." If you have established a fair batting average with your
intuition, trust it. If your average isn't so good, you are probably most
often taken in by beautiful Apathy, kind Sympathy or sweet Covert
HOW WELL IS HE SURVIVING?
Survival relates to both physical and mental well-being. If a person is
losing, if he can't support himself, if he's inadequately clothed, fed or
housed, he's in the lower ranges of the emotions. Nearer the top, the
person owns the basic necessities of living (or more). He's winning and
planning a better future.
Possession of money alone is not always an accurate index of a person's
survival. We sometimes see a downscale person with a great deal of money
who is unable to accomplish as much as a high-tone individual with much
HOW WELL IS HE UNDERSTOOD?
The chap in the lower emotions frequently complains that people don't
understand him. If you listen to him, you'll know why. He may say too
little. He may chatter on in a daffy monologue constantly interrupting
himself and flitting off on new tangents as he tries to say everything at
once. If he's in a hyper-intellectual bag, he'll use such big words and
obscure references that a hardened egghead can't understand him.
A topscale person is able to make himself understood. He's courageous
enough to communicate clearly and simply.
So, for a quick tone assessment, don't concern yourself with how much he
says or how many ten-dollar words he uses; the only question is: does his
message ever arrive?
WHAT DOES HE TALK ABOUT?
The higher level person enjoys hearing and passing on good news, ideas,
inspiring concepts and solutions. Lower types prefer talking about (and
listening to) bad news, sensationalism, death, destruction, scandal and
problems. Many people are concerned about pollution problems today; but
while the downscale people are merely spreading advance death notices, the
high-tone ones are offering solutions.
Upscale people enjoy talking; but they are equally able and willing to
listen. So, when we see someone whose mouth runs like a perpetual motion
machine or someone who's bottled up like a time capsule, we can be sure he
is in the bottom ranks.
Under 2.0 a person takes pride in convincing others that his problems
can't be solved. He says he has to get downtown but his car is in the
garage for repairs. You suggest a taxi and he replies, "Oh, you can't get
a taxi this time of day." A neighbor perhaps? "I don't know anyone well
enough to ask." Hitchhike? "But people won't pick up hitchhikers
anymore." By this time, you'll probably quit trying to solve his dilemma.
The real problem isn't transportation anyway; it's tone.
A person near the top enjoys getting problems solved so he can get on with
his major goals.
THE COMMUNICATION LAG
Ron Hubbard discovered another excellent indication of tone level: the
communication lag (usually referred to as comm lag). This is the length
of time that elapses after a person is asked a question and before he
answers. If you ask an upscale person an answerable question, such as
"How many doors are in this room?" he will look and give you an instant
answer. Someone on the downside, however, will hesitate for a short or a
long time (depending on how low-tone he is). He may wonder what you're
driving at, or try to figure out if this is a trick question. He may
launch into a long dissertation about the definition of a door and maybe
those windows could be considered doors and how does he know you don't
have a hidden door under the rug; but he doesn't answer the question. A
long communication lag indicates a chaotic mind, one that cannot handle
the simple cycle of a question and an answer.
A person in Apathy or Grief may never answer a question (unless you repeat
it several times). Some college boys brought a friend to see me one day.
Several weeks earlier this boy had taken one LSD trip too many; he never
came back. He was in deep, foggy Apathy. When I suggested a cup of
coffee, he followed me to the kitchen. I asked if he took cream or sugar;
he stared off vacantly for several minutes until I repeated the question.
Finally, looking at me as if I were a total stranger, he mumbled, "I don't
A person's environment becomes less and less real as he descends the tone
scale. What he hears, sees, smells, tastes or feels is less real in the
low bands. To this young man, a cup of coffee was unreal, and so was the
cream and sugar.
The communication lag is an excellent tool for a personnel man or anyone
who is interviewing men and women for hire. If you ask someone for his
name, address or phone number, he may reply quickly because he is
programmed by habit to give automatic answers to these questions. Ask him
something like: "How many feet do most people have?" and you will learn
his communication lag.
Some low-tone individuals will give you a barrel of philosophical hogwash
without answering the question. The 1.1 will comm lag while he searches
for meaning behind your question (he'll be trying out what you want to
hear). A person may jabber, or be silent; he may repeat or try to clarify
your question. Near answers, guesses and indecision don't count. The
length of time between asking the question the first time and receiving a
correct answer is the comm lag.
An individual's ability to plunge into elaborate thinking processes is no
clue to his tone. He must be here-now-to observe accurately. So the comm
lag tells you how far a person is out of present time.
A person or business will take a certain length of time to execute an
order. This is also a comm lag. When a secretary takes three hours to
find a letter in her files, she's pretty far gone. If you order office
equipment that doesn't arrive for six months, you are dealing with a
low-tone organization. You can predict the survival potential of a
business by its comm lag.
When someone frequently cuts, bruises and smashes his body, gets things in
his eyes, bashes the fenders of his car, or acquires an excessive number
of traffic tickets, he's low-tone, regardless of how well he explains his
tribulations. The lower the tone, the more accident prone he is.
The person on the upper side leads a "charmed life," experiencing few
accidents and injuries. This isn't just luck. He's more here; he reacts
faster and thereby avoids accidents.
DOING A JOB
Someone high on the tone scale structure accomplishes a great deal in a
short time, while the low person takes a long time to do a small job.
However, there are the downscale short-cutters who rush through something
and really make a hash of it.
Willingness to do a job is another indication of tone. The upscale
individual is willing to take on any job, big or small, if it fits in with
his general goals. A downscale person finds all sorts of ways to avoid
getting involved. Many jobs are beneath his dignity (unless he's way down
in the mop-the-floor-with-me tones). It's below 2.0 that we find the chap
who wastes his life away because he's too good for all the jobs around.
"I KNEW IT ALL THE TIME" SYNDROME
In the bottom zones we find people who refuse to be surprised. This is
most common between 1.1 and 2.0. You tell him something amazing and he
says, "I already knew that...... I expected as much," or "I can't say I'm
He "agrees late." Unwilling to be taken by surprise, or thrown off
balance, he pretends he knew it all the time. He's second cousin to the
man who says "I told you so," and twin brother to the one who makes a
mistake and pretends he meant to do it that way all along.
The highscale person is willing to be surprised and he's willing to make
and admit mistakes.
The most important thing to know about emotions is that individuals change
all over the scale if they are sane. The sane man gets mad when the
supplier fails to deliver on time; but he gets over it. He gets scared if
a drunken driver careens out in front of him; but he gets unscared when
the danger is past. He experiences the appropriate emotion for the
occasion; but the higher he is on the scale, the more quickly he recovers.
Most of the time, of course, he's cheerful and confident.
The low-tone person gets shaken up more easily and takes longer to
recover. He may stay upset for days or weeks. He may never recover, in
which case he settles into a chronic lower tone.
A number of years ago I played duplicate bridge in Detroit tournaments.
My partner and I agreed that when either of us made an error, we would
acknowledge it and forget it. By taking our thoughts off of our goofs we
could put our full attention on the present play at all times. This
agreement turned out to be one of our best assets. As we moved from table
to table, we often encountered couples who were still engaged in heated
arguments about the previous hand. When this happened, we nearly always
won our round with them because the angry person will continue the attack
against his own partner (this gave us three against one). He can be
counted on to be reckless, to give too little information and to do
everything possible to make his partner wrong. With such a couple the
bidding might go something like this:
Opponent: "Two hearts." (That'll force her to bid.)
His Partner: "Three hearts." (Let's see him make that, the fool.)
Opponent: "Four hearts." (She'd better have them!)
While this could be legitimate bidding, with two angry people, the chances
are it's not. In such a case we generally doubled the contract and walked
off with top board.
As mentioned several times, people move on the scale. This can be
confusing when you are trying to spot someone who moves only in a low
range, for it means that when he is at his best, he's still below 2.0. If
he's usually in Grief, he'll feel excited and alive when he gets up to
Dennis, an unsuccessful free lance writer and moderately successful
gigolo, spent most of his time in subdued Fear, although he was flexible
enough to utilize a 1.1 charm or a griefy Propitiation when threatened
with the necessity of having to support himself. Thus he lived by worming
his way into the benevolent confidence of sympathetic and propitiative
women. With a full stomach and a few extra dollars in his pocket,
however, he often soared up to his emotional ceiling-No Sympathy-where he
snarled at the hands that fed him, ran around looking menacing and took
tremendous pride in believing that people found him formidable.
Perry was in Anger most of the time. As the volume turned up and down, he
ranged from sullen resentment (at the bottom of 1.2) to bristling
combativeness, but never made it quite up to rage. His uninformed
friends, however, liked him best when he dropped down to 1.1 where he
became politely "nice."
Merilee, the lovely and constantly promiscuous actress, was primarily a
Sympathy person who frequently slipped to Apathy and drank herself
senseless. In her best (and sober) times, she became a 1.1 doll who
glowingly proclaimed that everything was marvelous.
The most insane people of all are those who remain solidly in one tone all
the time. Next on the sanity scale are those who move; but their peak is
still below 2.0. Even more sane are those who can hit the high tones when
all is going well and the environment is good. The sanest people rest at
the top, but travel down and back up the scale freely.
The downscale person prefers explaining why he failed, telling you (with
malicious pleasure) that others are failing or pretending he's a huge
success when his actual achievements are minimal.
The upscale person enjoys true success and seeing others succeed.
An individual in the lower tones uses generalities to justify his position
on something: "Nobody goes there anymore," "Everybody thinks . . ."
"People always . . ."
The upscale person is more specific. If he uses generalities for
convenience, they will be backed up with statistics.
If you're having a social lunch with a friend and he suggests you put the
lunch on your expense account because "nobody will know the difference
anyway," he's below 2.5 on the scale.
At Boredom a person will do what he can get away with. Lower down, ethics
go all the way from mild cheating to flagrant criminality. A person
engaged in any illegal or unethical activities is always below 2.0.
The high-tone person plays it straight-even when nobody's looking.
Notice how the person grooms himself. Is he clean and neat or is he dirty
and unkempt? He'll take care of his-environment the same way he takes
care of his body.
In the upper tones a person puts order into an environment. His property
will be neat, clean and in good repair. The low-scale individual creates
chaos; his possessions will be dirty, broken, unworkable (and sometimes
If you create an attractive home or office, the down-tone individual who
comes into it will destroy the beauty one way or another. He dirties it,
breaks the curtain rod and leaves it drooping, clutters the space with
junk, smashes a window and neglects to fix it. He turns your beauty into
His "acceptance level" is low. This is reflected in the cars he drives,
the hotels he uses, the clothes he wears. Living in a cluttered, shabby
environment indicates that he cannot accept a clean, attractive area.
When a man leaves a beautiful, happy girl to run off with a low-tone
prostitute, his acceptance level is below that of the beautiful girl. If
he receives handsome clothes but wears rags, if he remains on a poorly
paying job, his acceptance level is low.
Some downscale people are trained to be clean and to collect decent
belongings; but they care for their property very seriously, constantly
worrying and fussing about it. The upscale person takes good care of
possessions; but he's splendidly lighthearted about them.
Too often a fun-loving child is chastised for not "taking things
seriously." That's a sure clue to a downscale person. He's intense and he
wants others to be serious about things. The upscale individual keeps his
sense of humor and buoyancy.
While happiness and cheerfulness are trademarks of the high-tone person,
we must differentiate the real thing from the sham. Happiness isn't: 1)
the sad-faced euphoric living-happily-ever-after kind of thing in which
the Apathy person speaks of "inner peace" in a dull monotone interspersed
with deep sighs 2) the phony 1.1 enthusiasm with its perpetual smile and
compulsive laughter 3) Propitiation asserting (with sober intensity) how
fulfilling it is to "do" for those less fortunate or 4) a manic state of
he-hawing donkey glee (usually such a person is actually Apathy).
It is a quiet inner glow of cheerfulness which sometimes bubbles over into
a song or a belly laugh. It's not asserted; it's just there. And the sun
shines a little brighter.
If there's any doubt, look at the other aspects of the person's life.
THE "COME ALIVE" ASSESSMENT
One of the most valuable tools in spotting tone is this: What turns the
person on? I call it the "come alive" assessment. Notice what grabs a
person's interest and animates him and you'll know his tone.
Between 1.1 and 2.0 a person gets kicks out of scaring people, making them
nervous, bewildered, embarrassed, making them wrong and seeing them
disturbed. He will relish recounting such incidents. Upscale people
never take pleasure in someone else's discomfort.
I read recently about a carnival side show in which (with the aid of glass
and special lighting) the audience was tricked into believing that a wild
animal was coming right out into the audience. The perpetrator of this
hoax says he's happy when the crowd is frightened into a frenzied stampede
for the door. "When I do a show and nobody runs, it makes me feel bad,"
Pleasure is something that neither man nor civilization can do without.
It's man's whole reason for existing. The concept of pleasure takes on
many meanings as we move up and down the scale, however. In the rich
playboy, pleasure becomes an idle satisfaction of the senses without plan
or progress toward any goal. High-tone pleasure may be easy and relaxed
or dynamic and constructive; but the upscale person never enjoys purely
destructive or perverted sensual gratification. He gets enjoyment from
survival actions. He will desire skills, a good job, a large income, many
holdings and good possessions. These are all survival goals.
Downscale, pleasure moments are turned toward destruction. The Antagonism
person takes pleasure in whomping up a good argument or beating down the
enemy. The 1.5 will tell you, with satisfaction, how he really "put a
stop to that." He'll advocate killing and blowing things up. The idea of
destruction turns him on. A 1.1 comes alive if he runs across a
tremendously inviting situation which permits him to be devious, covertly
hostile, or perverted in some way. He'll delight in deceiving someone
into believing an outrageous lie. He'll chuckle lasciviously as he
describes how he cheated on his wife. If he dwells on death, illness,
tragedy, and poverty he's probably in the lower band. And if he turns on
with a chance to do for the unfortunate, he's in Sympathy or Propitiation.
A Grief/Apathy person will actually daydream contemplating the most
gruesome suicides and deaths of his loved ones and how he and everyone
else would feel if this happened. That's his kinky kind of pleasure.
PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
Where is his attention in time? A person between 0 and 1.0 is caught in
the past. You say, "Look at the purple sunset," and he must describe all
the other sunsets he's ever seen (or those he missed).
Between 1.1 and 2.0 he's barely in present time. He talks a great deal
about "getting things started." He lives impulsively without regard for
the future consequences.
Between 2.0 and 3.0 the person is pretty much in present time, although he
doesn't look back much and prefers not to plan too far ahead.
The individual at the top can remember the past with enjoyment; but his
attention is on the present and long-range planning of the future.
ARE YOU KILLING OR CURING?
If you're a teacher, minister, office manager, marriage counselor, doctor
or a person with a next door neighbor, sooner or later you are likely to
be faced with the job of coping with an upset person. When this happens,
you should keep in mind the progressive order of the tones. This is the
only way to determine whether you boosted him up the scale a bit or pushed
him out the bottom.
When someone comes to you in tears and leaves feeling calm, you should be
able to determine whether his calmness is higher tone or whether he's
slipping into Apathy. If a person stops crying, heaves a monstrous sigh,
and says, "Well, I guess that's the way life is. I'll just have to accept
it," you'd better panic. He's gone down-tone and you may next hear of him
in the obituary column. On the other hand, if a Grief person stops crying
and becomes interested in you or someone else and wants to do something,
he's risen to Propitiation and that's an improvement.
A friend once called me sobbing, "I just can't take any more. What's the
use of it all?"
Without waiting to hear her whole story, I said: "Put the coffee pot on.
I'm coming over."
The trouble, it seemed was with her marriage which had graduated into a
limply "polite" stage. Now, due to some small provocation, she was
convinced that her husband no longer loved her and everything was
hopeless. Many cups of coffee later I left her in Anger-not the best
tone, but much more alive.
Before her husband arrived home she lined up her old job and a place for
herself and three children to live. Typical of Anger, she was ready to
destroy the marriage; but she was also eager to confront her husband
without sentimentality or forced niceness, and she did so. A royal battle
ensued. Her husband, apparently, harbored much repressed discontent with
their marriage too. Her Anger brought him out of his shell. They
screamed until all their gripes were aired, a few confessions made and
they became bored with the whole thing. After realizing that they were
both more or less right, they emerged at a new level of interest in each
other and this led to a second honeymoon-type situation which, according
to her report, was better than the first one. Their marriage now operates
on a higher tone. They engage in healthy battle from time to time; but
they are no longer covert with each other. When they are loving and kind,
As a person changes emotions, he may skip some tones or they won't be
apparent. It's an elevator ride where he won't necessarily stop at every
floor; but you should be able to identify enough emotions to know whether
he's going up or down.
Learn to differentiate between high and low tones first. After that an
exact evaluation is easier.
A person may not manifest every characteristic of his tone. You may know
someone who seems to be in Fear, but who whips up a tirade at the paper
boy. You may know a 1.1 who never puns, plays practical jokes or laughs
nervously. Look for the tone in which most of his actions fall and don't
worry about the manifestations that don't fit.
Most people move up and down the scale somewhat, so you may need to
observe someone several times to determine his chronic tone (or tone
When you encounter someone you can't place on the scale (and you know he's
not at the top) he's probably a 1.1.
Social prejudices can hamper our ability to use the tone scale accurately.
A man may admire a beautiful girl so much that he is incapable of
evaluating her tone. A person over forty, may form an instant dislike for
a long-haired, bare-footed, let-it-all-hang-out youth. If you evaluate by
tone instead of prejudice you'll find some lovable, topscale men under
those shaggy beards. When we use outmoded standards to classify people we
may choose some bad ones-and we may also miss the opportunity of sharing a
bit of merriment with a blithe spirit.
The other major flaw in tone scale evaluation lies in our own personal
weaknesses. We may give someone the "benefit of the doubt" when we
actually know better. This is a misguided kindness, for we can aid the
other person most (not to mention the wear and tear we save on our own
nervous systems) by simply evaluating him correctly in the beginning.
So, the first mistake you can make with the tone scale is not using it.
The second mistake you can make is not believing it.
Any further mistakes depend upon your own originality and imagination.
Chapter 18 - CLICHE'S TO LIVE BY-OR SHOULD WE?
The well-meaning minister tells us to "turn the other cheek." Mother says,
"Laugh and the world laughs with you." Teacher admonishes, "Count to ten
before you lose your temper."
With the help of kindly mentors, most of us started stuffing our mental
closets with guiding platitudes from the time we read our first Popeye
comic strip. We take out and dust off some of them at the slightest
provocation; others we keep around because they might be valuable someday.
We seldom consider cleaning out the closet because it's too difficult to
separate the authentic pieces from the counterfeit. In this chapter we'll
haul out a few odds and ends and examine them beside the tone scale.
THE INGREDIENT OF TRUTH
In a Professional Bulletin, L. Ron Hubbard once said: "In all aberration
we discover that it is the ingredient of truth which maintains the
aberration in force."
-P.A.B. No. 46
Every level of the tone scale contains an "ingredient f truth," and this
is what each person uses to defend his emotional temperament. The person
in Fear says, "What's wrong with being a little careful?" Propitiation
asks: "Why shouldn't you do things for people? Isn't that what life's all
They're both right, of course. There's enough truth in each tone to make
a person feel justified in his emotional inclinations; but it is only part
of the truth.
There was the case of the butcher who lost both legs and worked around his
shop in a wheel chair for fifteen years. One day his granddaughter,
Debbie, was playing in a neighbor's yard with a friend when a strange man
came out of the house. Debbie asked, "Who's that?"
"That's my grandfather," her friend replied.
"No," said Debbie scornfully, "he can't be your grandfather."
"Because grandfathers don't have legs, silly."
That was Debbie's ingredient of truth about grandfathers. It was right as
far as it went. Thus it is with the tones. Each one is right as far as
it goes; but it only goes far enough to become a mockery of the higher
Every tone level is fortified with cliches, bromides, proverbs and whole
philosophies to justify the position. Only with the use of the Emotional
Tone Scale can we differentiate between a truly sane attitude and it's
lowtone imitation. Let's look at some of the levels to see what sayings a
person might use to excuse his tone.
"Give me the serenity to accept those things I cannot change." This might
well be the prayer of a high-tone person because he is basically realistic
about his ambitions. Apathy, however, thinks you can't change anything
anyway, so his brand of serenity is only the weakness of the overwhelmed.
A regrettable influence on mankind is the King James translation of the
beatitude, "Blessed are the meek . . This phrase is a paradox to thinking
man, for "meek" implies spineless submissiveness. Many experts consider
this word a faulty translation. In fact, the French Douay Bible
translates the beatitude as: "Blessed are the debonair .. .
"Debonair," according to the dictionary, is "affable, gracious, genial,
carefree, gay and jaunty." That's hightone. It makes more sense.
Personally, I've never seen a doormat inherit anything but a little more
"To weep is to make less the depth of grief." Yes, if he can shed his
grief through tears, one can move back upscale again. The stuck Grief
person, however, just keeps finding more to wail about.
The upscale individual takes pleasure in remembering and describing
pleasant experiences from the past. Grief, too, reminisces; but he thinks
the past is all there is, so his stories are basted with dripping regrets
and spiced with nostalgic might-have-beens.
Is it really better to give than to receive? Yes. The high-tone person
is a generous one (after the needs of self and family are met), and his
giving tends to promote survival. The downscale mockery, Propitiation,
however, gives because he is too weak to do otherwise. He's trying to buy
off danger, so his hidden motive is to stop the recipient and render him
"There is always someone worse off than yourself." Yes, indeed, and
Sympathy delights in finding every one of them. At the top levels we
discover a natural empathy. He doesn't enjoy seeing someone in difficulty
and will do his best to help the person out of it. Sympathy, on the other
hand, pats the unfortunate one on the head, murmurs if poor dear," and
does his best to keep him there.
"Look before you leap." The upscale person has a healthy respect for
danger if his actual survival is threatened; but his fear is balanced with
courage and good judgment. The person at 1.0 is afraid of everything.
"Count to ten before you lose your temper" may be sound practice for one
who is above Anger, but it's suppressive to one below that emotion for it
leaves him without a safety valve and fixes him in the lower tones.
"The day is lost in which one has not laughed." Upscale we find a
fun-loving spirit of play. The 1.1 however, takes everything so seriously
that he now pretends to be unserious. He manifests compulsive laughter, a
constant effort to entertain or a sweet, insincere mimicry of highscale
good humor. He jokes at others' expense. He mocks and makes fun of
everything he can't do himself. He must show that it doesn't matter and
"it's all amusing." He's the witty, cynical critic-the player who spends
all his time on the bench.
"Don't tell everything you know." The high-tone person can be discreet;
but he's not sneaky. The 1.1 prides himself on being "subtle," which is
merely a way of defending the subterfuge with which he covers up his
Kipling said, "If you can keep your head when all about you are losing
theirs . . ." The No Sympathy person prides himself on never getting
emotional; he's always in control.
The high-tone fellow doesn't panic in a crisis. He handles emergencies
better than anyone else; but he needn't consign his soul to the deep
freeze in order to keep his cool. He's a warm-hearted, loving person
who's willing to feel emotions.
"You can't make an omelet without breaking eggs." The upscale person is
courageous enough to destroy where necessary for survival or when it
benefits the greatest number. Anger, driven by false bravado, only breaks
the eggs; he never does get around to making the omelet.
"You have to fight fire with fire." When the upscale person gets some
opposition thrown at him, he turns it to his advantage; he neither
collapses nor gets endlessly involved in fighting it. The "truth" at 2.0,
however, is reflected in the necessity to challenge anything that seems
threatening. He tries to build a fire out of every spark.
SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES
There are hundreds of memorable passages (both profound and trite)
containing an ingredient of truth which can be used to amplify below 2.0
emotions. For a helpful exercise, examine the similarities and
differences between upscale truths and their downscale mockeries. Do this
especially before you accept advice; it may be attractively gift-wrapped
in a low-tone package.
Many self-help books are in the category of near truths. I read such a
book recently by an experienced psychologist who pointed out the flaws in
numerous human attitudes. He condemned whining, bootlicking, false veneer
and competitiveness. Most of his advice, however, rested in the tone of
Boredom. He suggested that one should sway with the breeze. Take life as
it comes. Adjust. Don't set your hopes impossibly high. Don't try to
thrive on daydreams. Just enjoy what's here."
Some of his advice rested in Apathy: "We should not try to understand
man's conduct," he claimed, "because asking why we do things is of little
use. There are no causes for behavior."
He further advised the reader to be neither optimistic nor pessimistic
because both attitudes were crutches used by those who lacked confidence
in themselves. We should take life as it comes, he tells us, not dwelling
in hope because it's only wishful thinking.
These statements contain both elements of truth and something false. All
of us might hope for a saner world. An idealistic dream, to be sure. The
lowscale person only listlessly wishes that someone would do something
about it. The uptone individual discovers a way to make one man saner,
and another, so he keeps working toward his dream, and his life has a
purpose. A man without hope is a flower that never blooms, a sun without
warmth, a man with no tomorrow. Hope is man's link with the future.
In short, this book was telling us that in order to be "mature" one should
quit hoping and trying and getting all involved and frustrated. Throw
away the oars instead, and let the current take your boat wherever it
will. At best this is Boredom; at worst it's Apathy. In either case,
it's a limp surrender. No high-tone person needs to compromise with
mediocrity. And no man needs to settle for less than high-tone.
I read another interesting self-help book which promised to make the
reader "powerful and influential with people." The author started off
advocating that one walk with confidence, look people right in the eye,
observe good manners, courtesy and respect. Sounds good; but this turned
out to be another downscale look-alike. When he began proposing methods
for artificially boosting status and leveling others down, I realized that
the author was selling a 1.1 and 1.2 mockery of power. Nearly every
paragraph advocated smooth, but covert, methods for getting attention and
putting others down. He warned the reader: "Other people are out to get
you, to nullify your status, prestige or authority. Never relax for a
moment or someone will push you off your pedestal."
He repeatedly cautioned against the danger of losing one's temper: "Keep a
tight control." He even offered several techniques for introverting the
other person with snide, well-placed questions when there was any risk of
venting Anger. The book could be summarized briefly: the way to be
powerful is to suppress everyone else; but do it nicely with a smile on
Sometimes we see the results of research by sincere people who (because
they do not know the tone scale) arrive at false judgments. Recently
I heard of a London psychiatrist who concluded after several years of
study that "good girls grow up to be bad mothers."
He explained that a young girl who always minds her mother, does just as
she's told at home or school, and never causes any trouble or fuss, turns
out to be inadequate as a mother because there is no longer anyone telling
her what to do.
Those "good girls" were obviously Fear or below, since no spirited,
upscale child is so blindly obedient that she remains dependent.
What his research actually tells us is that 1) many people consider a
downscale, submissive child to be a "good girl" and 2) the low-tone child
grows into a low-tone adult.
Before you accept the ancient proverb, the popular cliche' or the advice
of an "expert," look beyond the ingredient of truth for the emotion behind
those words of alleged wisdom.
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