The following first appeared in the private email list IVy-subscribers,
which was available to all those who subscribed to the
printed magazine, International Viewpoints.

Service Fac contest news, and more
by Phil Spickler
21 Jun 00

      Well folks, let's get right down to business here, and I think the
first Order of the Day, or OOD, is to issue highest commendations and
grateful thanks to Magister Kenneth Urquhart for once again gracing the pages
of the IVy-subscribers list with his deathless prose and insight.  A thousand
thanks to this returning god!

        The next order of business is to announce that the Service Facsimile
contest will be closed and accept no forther entries as of midnight, June 30,
no matter where you are in the world.  Entries of course posted close to that
date will still be received as part of the contest.  Then there'll be a
period of time while the judges look over all the entries, and after much
haggling will come up with the winners.  And as in most contests, the
decision of the judges will be final.

        As you know if you ever entered any contests in this world, people
like me or my family or my employes can't enter this contest 'cause we're the
sponsors of it, and it might look suspicious if some of us started winning.
So even though I've got some great Service Facsimiles, I can't put them into
this particular contest.  That doesn't mean, however, that you won't find
them liberally sprinkled throughout my postings.

        One regret I have is that some of the very best Service Facsimiles
that I've ever seen on the IVy-subscribers list were not entered into the
contest by their creators, and that's really too bad, because there were some
really fine service facsimiles visible in the last few weeks.  So as much as
I would like to put them up for entrance in the contest, I can't do it,
because that would be Enforced Reality.  I'd like to ask, though, that some
of the worthies that have been writing to the list in the past few weeks take
another look at some of their postings and see if you wouldn't like to relent
and make some of those beauties entries in the contest.

        As you probably know, anyone can make as many entries as they like --
you're not limited to one.  Just like in real life, a person doesn't have
just one service facsimile -- if he or she only has one, I fear that's a very
low havingness of one of the important things that allow us to be human.

       In this, as well as past Service Fac contests, different folks have
attributed various motives to yours truly, ranging from a very high-minded
and humorous effort to increase self-awareness, as well as an improved
understanding of just what service facsimiles are all about, to very devious
and evil intentions designed to make everyone wrong except Phil himself.  I
can appreciate all the viewpoint that appears on this subject, 'cause Service
Facsimiles as a subject can bring up some pretty heavy-duty stuff in the area
that we used to call "case."  (I'm defining case at the moment as what the
guy doesn't know that IS hurting him, and believe me there are a lot of other
and possibly better definitions than that one.)

        One of the legacies of our mutual connection, directly or indirectly,
with L. Ron Hubbard was the terrible example that he set of making himself
and his case something that could never be viewed as humorous or treated in a
lighthearted fashion, which is quite a bit different from the 1950's Ron and
the Philadelphia Lecture Series Ron, who might have had as a stable datum
something on the order of "What's a little case among friends?"

     Anyhow, Ron finally got to the point where anybody in his dynamic that
was foolish enough to poke fun at him or his case or any of the personalities
that he designed and inhabited was just as good as dead upon the old man
getting wind of it.  This permeated the Church, and not only did everybody
smoke cigarettes like Ron, but they got awfully touchy about their cases.

        A Service Facsimile contest, as you might already have divined, is an
effort to lighten up on an area of case that most people are quite solid and
serious about, and who have a tendency to treat their service facsimiles as
though they were some high order of truth that must be protected unto the

       Another thing we're aiming for is to get people into good enough shape
to be able to step back from the canvas of "self" that they have been
painting and have one heck of a good belly laugh at some of the silly
features that they have endowed this self with.  In other words, recover the
ability to laugh heartily and joyously at oneself, with the certain knowledge
that it isn't by any means the best picture that you could have painted,and
that it's OK to either throw it away or dump it and paint a better picture
with the full knowledge at all times that as the Creator, you can make as
many selves as you want.  You might even do one that lots of folks, or
perhaps even the whole world, thinks of as a masterpiece.  But if you keep
treating bad art as though it should be accepted as a masterpiece, you're in
for some rough times along the way.

       So as any painter or creator or artist will tell you, create and paint
for fun, even with the knowledge that you may not be a genius, and when you
do make something patently ridiculous, for gosh sakes, try to be the first to
laugh at it, which immediately opens the gates to improving creation, which
you can't do when you're stuck on the idea that you've done the very best
that will ever be possible.  In our opinion, one of the most wonderful
differences between the mentally healthy and the mentally unhealthy is the
ability of the mentally healthy to view themselves and their foibles and
their artistic atrocities with humor.

         When you've made something that is designed to make you right and
others wrong, and it's become fixed in your repertoire of communication, no
matter how lofty the thing you've created is that you've used to make others
wrong, it's really just another Service Facsimile that doesn't have good
intentions behind or in it, and doesn't serve you or those you're harming
with it, as will be noticed in the diminishment of ARC that occurs when two
or more service facsimiles clash together.

         If there be any process that's unlimited and inevitably successful,
it would go something like this: Start laughing at what you seriously
consider to be yourself, and keep on laughing at that self until you cease to
consider that anything that's that funny could really be you.

       Adieu, adieu kind friends, adieu--