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.

Whatever happened to the sperm-ovum sequence?
by Phil Spickler
17 Jul 1998

Back in the almost prehistoric days of Book 1 Dianetics, and in the
quest for the Holy Grail known as Clear, there was the belief, nay,
the postulate, nay, the fact, that if you could reach something
called Basic- Basic, namely the great-great-great-great-grandfather
of all engrams, and then run this incident to erasure and clean up
everything that lay upon it, you would indeed be looking at a Clear.
Some preclears in the quest for Basic- Basic ran into an incident or
set of incidents that came to be described as the sperm-ovum
sequence, and for a few of these, at least, this proved to be
Basic-Basic.  As an aside, the business of going earlier often led
people into incidents that for all intents and purposes were quite a
bit earlier than anything having to do with the this-lifetime body --
this phenomenon got treated in all kinds of different ways, depending
on who you were and who was doing the auditing, since prior to the
publishing of the Dianetic axioms, the 1950 picture was essentially
this lifetime and four dynamics: not a bad package.  And if it wasn't
horribly abused by attempting to audit people past enormous wins,
there were indeed a fair number of people who did, if but
temporarily, achieve states that looked pretty darned clear.  One of
the most famous at that time was a chap known as The Minnesota Clear,
and he exhibited practically all of the attributes that a Clear
should possess, as described in _Dianetics, the Modern Science of
Mental Health_.  I kind of lost track of his exploits, but a few
years later heard that he had become a Catholic priest.  I shall make
no further comment about him at this time.

But anyway, let's pick up our story at the sperm-ovum sequence and
look at some of the fascinating aspects that appear with an increased
understanding of just what this sequence is all about.  As we know,
Ron Hubbard, in some ways along the same chain as Sigmund Freud, was
looking for hidden influences that could and did explain much of the
aberrated behavior of human beings. Is it possible that the
interaction between sperm and ovum, the two consitutents of the human
body, could contain pre-programed survival items that might later
become dramatized by the mature product of such a union?  I'd say the
answer to that question is "YES."  Just for example, consider the
life of a single sperm in intense competition with millions of its
own kind in a desperate struggle to be Number 1.  In the world of the
sperm, there's no analytical fooling around, there's no
pan-determined looking out for the welfare of others, there's no
"After you, my dear Alphonse" -- it's absolute tooth and claw, with
the whole potential for the survival of the human race built into
each one  of these individuals, with only one chance to create the
union that will create the possibility of biological immortality.
The stakes are pretty high, the goal extremely important, and if you
can imagine the struggle and then look at some of the characters,
mostly male, that have been spawned in this world, you may, with a
great chuckle or even a succession of loud laughs, get the idea of
what drives some of our most frantic and fanatic historical figures
into the enormous excesses that their lives display to the rest of
us.  For a moment let's turn our attention to the ovum.  Here again
we have one single possibility for this individual to attain
biological immortality; the ovum in its environment is more or less
in a passive state, unable to actively influence its position but
intending with all its heart and soul to reach a point that will be
most favorable to the consummation of the union.  The ovum cannot
penetrate the sperm, but must serve itself as a target and intend
with all its might to be penetrated.  There are of course numerous
attitudes, emotions, intentions, and postulates built into and around
this amazing creature that can and do often explain behavioral
problems in both sexes, just as those of the sperm also can explain
behavioral problems in both sexes, since once the union of the two
does occur, all the memories and desperate possibilities that both
have been through become part and parcel of the product of that union.

It is somewhat laughable, as well as extremely tragic, to see the
degree to which mature specimens of our biology are driven to make
the sperm-ovum sequence possible, without perhaps consciously
realizing that the whole future of the human race depends on this
sequence, not on Scientology or Dianetics as Ron, without putting his
tongue into his cheek, claimed in the bulletin "Keeping Scientology
Working."  Anyhow, in the shaping of individual humans and their
destiny, most of us don't laugh about and are made uncomfortable by
being told that the biggest reason for our existence is simply to
make possible future existence, and that it in large part consists of
getting these microorganisms into a favorable location for this to
happen; that we're just a bunch of good-looking seedbearers.  Well,
we're all fond of thinking there's a lot more to it than that, and I
would tend to agree that this is the case; howsomever, this seems to
be a big part of what it's all about, and many of the constructs of
civilization and the great and various trappings that we clothe our
actions in come down to this simple basic point of survival.  Does
this throw out all the ideas about theta and thetans and spiritual
immortality and high states of conssciousness?  I don't think so, but
I think you'll agree with me that the influences hidden in this area
and dramatized by human beings, both sadly and humorously, contribute
a great deal to the Sturm-und- Drang of life, and certainly can and
often do make great fools of us.

When Ron Hubbard wrote _Advanced Procedures and Axioms_ and published
it, this became one of his least popular books, and in one or more
talks that I heard him make in 1957, in a meeting we were having
about book sales, he claimed with lots of laughing that one of the
big reasons that this book never sold very well was that in it he had
said the basic aberration is to be human, and that an immortal
consciousness couldn't get any crazier than when it was trying to do
the only thing it could do, which is survive.  Yes, for an immortal
consciousness to get on the kick of trying to survive as an immortal
biological entity could be kind of nuts, don't you think?

Well, join with me in having a good laugh as I quote the lines of an
early Scientologist by the name of William Shakespeare, whose
character Puck in _Midsummer Night's Dream_ said, "What fools these
mortals be!" and enjoy the startling realization that Basic-Basic is
probably not the sperm-ovum sequence but simply the intention to be
human.  Thank you for bearing with me in this, my midsummer night's
dream, and I shall look forward to the silent minority and majority
of IVy subscribers piping up to set the record straight as I retire
to my alfalfa farm and count sheep as sleep o'ercomes my soul.  Love,