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Floating Needles
and End Phenomena

In this chapter we cover the important subject of End Phenomena in its entirety. We have touched upon the subject before in unmetered auditing. This is still valid.

In most ST processing the auditor will however use a Meter. The Meter enables the auditor to reach deeper and faster into the pc's case and for advanced auditing it is an invaluable help and a necessity. It is thus important to become an expert in metering at some point.

The needle behavior called a Floating Needle is in metered sessions a part of the End Phenomena (EP). Since there over the years have been some changes concerning F/N's lets first clear that up.


What is an Floating Needle?
Over the years of development of the processes R. Hubbard changed the definition of Floating Needle slightly. What seemed to cause the most trouble in processing was where the TA was supposed to be to consider an F/N valid. Originally it had to be between 2.0 and 3.0 to be valid.

An 'F/N' occurring above 3.0 or below 2.0 was considered an ARC break F/N, meaning it was an 'F/N' as far as needle behavior was concerned; but it meant that the pc had 'disconnected' from his Bank due to an ARC break, not a key-out or win.

In 1971 and later considerable research and testing was done in the field known as 'False TA' (and also into case reasons for high and low TA). It became clear that dry and callused hands could cause bad Meter contact and thus high TA. Wet and sweaty hand could cause 'too good' a connection and thus low TA. Since the Meter measures resistance (measured in Ohms) this is understandable from the viewpoint of physics.

In other words, it became clear that the range between 2.0 -3.0 for a valid F/N wasn't an absolute rule or requirement. In 1978 (in the issue, CS Series 99RA) this became the guide lines to auditors about valid F/N's:

"The CORRECT procedure for out of range F/Ns is:

1. Look at the pc's indicators.

2. Call the F/N regardless of its range.

3. Mark down the ACTUAL TA position.

4. Handle the false TA at the earliest opportunity when it will not intrude into the current cycle on which the pc is being audited.

5. On any pc you suspect has had his F/Ns disregarded because of false TA, you... repair and rehab this error." (in a later session).

Later the same year a new and simpler definition of F/N was made official in a technical bulletin called 'What is a Floating Needle?' It says:

"A floating needle is a rhythmic sweep of the dial at a slow, even pace of the needle."

In The Road to Clear we use the below formulation as 'harmonic motion' has a clear physical definition:

"A Floating Needle is a harmonic motion over the dial at a slow, even pace of the needle."



As you can see in this final definition of an F/N there is no mention of the TA position at all.

The final Bulletin R. Hubbard issued on the matter was HCOB 2 December 1980, 'F/N and TA Position Modified'. It states "a floating needle is a floating needle regardless of where the Tone Arm position may be. It should be called, indicated and written as an F/N, with the TA noted." and "Tone arm positions register the relative mass of the case and nothing in this finding changes that. There are low TA cases and high TA cases and the state of the TA remains important and all data regarding TA positions are valid."

In other words a Floating Needle is valid regardless of position of the Tone Arm.
If the pc has good indicators (GI's) or very good indicators (VGI's) it means the pc is experiencing a moment of relief and release.

If the pc has bad indicators (BI's) or very bad indicators (VBI's) it means the F/N is caused by an ARC break. In this case you would never call it to the pc.

CS Series 99RA says this about it:

"Where an ARC break needle (which looks like an F/N) is observed, whether it is in range (2.0 to 3.0) or out of range (below 2.0 or above 3.0) you LOOK at the pc and establish the pc's indicators before falsely calling an F/N. A pc who is about to cry is NOT an F/Ning pc and if you indicate an F/N to that pc you will further the ARC break and suppress the emotional charge that is about to come off."

You may find in this manual, that the range for a valid F/N is given as between 2.0 and 3.0. This is still the most desirable range, but not an absolute. If the TA remains high of low and the process still runs to F/N VGI that process and session is fine. But when the case supervisor (C/S) sees this he is alerted to that other case factors causing this increased mass has to be addresses (see also 'Flying Rudiments',  the section on 'High TA and Ruds'). 

In R. Hubbard's original technical writings of early date, you will find the range 2.0 - 3.0 given as the TA range for an F/N to be valid. As you can see from the above quotes, this was changed. So just remember, that the above data are the valid data and definitions of today regarding F/N's, indicators and TA position.

End Phenomena:
As you have seen on the Self Analysis Lists (SAL) the End Phenomena (EP) is what you are really after each time you go in session. This is true for the pc and the auditor as well.

The EP means a positive change has occurred. That another piece of the Bank has been dealt with and that the pc feels better.

Let's go over the definition of EP in its entirety:

The End Phenomena of a ST process are:

1) Floating Needle. 2) VGI. 3) Cognition. 4) Release.

A Floating Needle (FN or F/N): A floating needle is a certain needle behavior on a Meter. It is a harmonic motion of the needle over the dial at a slow, even pace. A valid floating needle is always accompanied by very good indicators in the pc.

Pc VGI. That means pc is happy. Pc is at 3.3 on the tone scale or higher at the end of the process.

Pc has a cognition: that is a new realization. That is a statement like: "I suddenly realize..." Or: "It now became clear to me..." He has realized something new about his life, his past, his relationships and so on. It is a subjective new understanding the pc has obtained as a result of running the process. Sometimes it can be a spectacular life-changing new knowledge. It is not always that spectacular, but it is always a "What do you know!" type of realization. It results in a higher degree of awareness and consequently a greater ability to succeed with one's activities in life.

Release. Means pc knows he has had worthwhile gains from the process. If you talk about a whole Grade, like communication, release means a well defined ability regained.


F/N's and End Phenomena
Now and then you will have pc's that go into a protest when they hear the words 'Floating Needle'.

The pc may feel he isn't really done, yet the auditor says "Your needle is floating".

This can become so bad so the subject of 'F/N's' themselves has to be taken up as a charged subject.

The reason why the auditor has gotten his pc in this trouble is, that he hasn't understood the subject of End Phenomena it its entirety.

End Phenomena is defined as "those indicators in the pc and the Meter which shows that a process is ended". In ST it shows that the pc has been released on the process being run. A new process or flow can be taken up only when the End Phenomena of the previous process has been reached.

Auditors become nervous of fear of overrunning the pc. But this only happens if the auditor goes past the entire EP. In that case the F/N will cease and the TA will start to go up. It only happens if you go past all four parts of the EP.

It doesn't happen just because you go past the F/N. The EP need to develop.

When you are near the end of a process you will see:

1. The needle starts to float narrowly.

2. The pc cognites - and the F/N becomes wider.

3. You see the very good indicators on your pc coming in - The F/N may even become wider.

4. The pc goes release on the process.

That is the full End Phenomena you want to see develop.

If the auditor sees the narrow F/N under (1) and immediately says "I would like to indicate your needle is floating" it can upset the pc and his Bank.

There is still charge. The pc has not had a cognition yet and the VGI's will never show up if this charge is left hanging there.

If you as an auditor out of eagerness or fear, or by just wanting to get it done with, indicates an F/N too soon you will cut the pc off from 3/4 of the End Phenomena.

The Grades
All the processes of the Grades 0-4 of ST have the same principal EP.

ST 5, Engram Clearing - that deals with physical painful incidents (Engrams) and how to erase them, has a slightly different EP. Here you are running through the picture recordings of these painful incidents (Engrams) and part of the EP is to ensure the 'Incident' (recording) is erased from the Bank.

But on the processes of ST 0-4 the End Phenomena are:

1. Floating Needle

2. Cognition

3. Very good indicators

4. Release

The pc will go through these four steps every time - if permitted to do so.

It can sometimes be a delicate decision to know exactly when to indicate the F/N.

In ST 0-4 you can run into the phenomena of 'overrun'. This is seen if the F/N disappears and the TA starts to go up (you can remedy it on the spot by applying the rehabilitation process - 'Rehab'). The auditor has to be alert and all ears and eyes. But there is no excuse to cut the pc off from 3/4 of his EP.

The "I would like to indicate to you your needle is floating" can be a premature acknowledgment, a cut-off. On major processes the needle should be widely floating and keep floating before you indicate it.

Pc's that leave session with an F/N and shortly after at the Examiner has no F/N has been mis-audited. If audited properly they should keep the F/N and arrive at the next session with an F/N.

The premature indication of F/N's can be difficult to catch for the supervisor. It is more obvious if the pc was overrun.

Here is how you determine when the right time for the F/N indication is:

Never interrupt a pc that is still looking inward. Do not try to pull pc's attention over on you, the auditor. You are handling his case, not just trying to perform the actions you have learned.

When you see the beginnings of the F/N you listen for the cognition. If there isn't any you carry on with the process and give the next command. If still no cognition you give the next command. You are very alert to anything the pc wants to say. If he starts on an origination you shut up immediately. The real skill is to know when to shut up. You will get the cognition, the needle will start floating widely. You will see the VGI's on the pc and an even freer needle (wider F/N).

(You will have to determine that this is the release point of the process. If the pc is cogniting on something completely disrelated you would be suspicious but simply write it down as an observation at this point.)

When the pc's attention is extroverted and he has finished expressing his cognition it means he is ready and done. Now you can say, expressing agreement with the pc, "Your needle is floating".

A pc that complains about 'F/N's' is actually complaining about being distracted, while he is still realizing his full cognition, by the auditor demanding his attention a moment too soon.

The pc, who is still looking inward, becomes upset when the auditor tries to catch his attention when it actually is on what it is supposed to be on. This leaves charge on the case and at some point the pc may refuse more auditing.

In ST 0-4 processes an overrun can happen. The F/N stops and the TA starts to go up. As mentioned it is an overrun phenomenon. What happens is, that the pc pulls in the Bank again.

But there is no excuse for cutting a pc's EP short. You simply have to develop the skill to know when is the exact right time to indicate the F/N for the individual pc in front of you.


Persistent F/N
A Floating Needle can persist.

When a pc gets a big win in auditing it can turn on a wide and persistent F/N. There is nothing more you can do or should do for that pc in that session.

You can't and shouldn't go on to the next major auditing action or process.

If you do go ahead and clear the next command you will see an F/N. If he ran 3 processes after that you would just see F/N, F/N, F/N.

But it would be the same F/N!

The result would be, that the 3 processes run after the wide F/N were actually never run on the case.

This can happen in any auditing. When a person goes Clear he will have this Persistent F/N. You couldn't stop it with an axe.

If you run a lot of Grade Zero, communications processes, you can get it too. A real wide persistent, unkillable F/N.

When pc turns up for session the next day it is still there.

If you finished off the Level Zero processes in one session and put the pc onto Grade One in the same session you wouldn't be auditing the pc's case. You would just be looking at the same win and the same persistent F/N. The pc would get no benefit from his Level One auditing. He would still be in awe about his win on Level Zero. That's what he would be talking about.

You would for sure have a Level Zero (communications release). But on Level One (problems) you couldn't even get him close to look at that subject. He would be so keyed out so his Bank would be nowhere to be found.

Next week he would have problems (Grade One) hitting him with a hammer again. And so it would go with any other subject audited over a Persistent F/N.

As an auditor you 'shouldn't distract a pc form his case' (per Auditors Code). But you shouldn't distract him from his big win either.

If you see a dial wide F/N, cognition and VVGI, there is only one thing you should do, and that is end off the session and let the pc enjoy his win. You wouldn't take him back in session until at least the day after.

That is what is meant by letting the pc have his win.

You may see this phenomena coming gradually during the session - and great!

You see an F/N on flow 1, a wider F/N on flow 2 and 3. Then on flow 0 you see this dial wide F/N and VVGI and you know it is time to end off. You will also see auditing actions get shorter and shorter during the course of this.

If you have never seen that as an auditor you better get your TR-0 completely flattened. Do TR-0 Bullbait until you can pass a 2 (two) hours Bullbait without a break or flunks. Then get your other TRs in to perfection too. Then you will see it, because that is what is supposed to happen.

If you have a pc ending session with a small F/N he may not be able to have an F/N at the Examiner. If you get it to Persistent F/N, you don't have to worry. It will always get to the Examiner.

One day your pc will come into session with a dial-wide F/N and anything you say or do can't disturb that.

This is a Release! A real one. It may last for weeks, months or even years.

Tell the pc to go out and enjoy it and come back for some more auditing, when he feels he needs some.

If it is truly a Persistent F/N he won't object. If it isn't you may see him the next day and carry on.

You don't use this to refuse auditing to pc's. You use it to determine, when to end off a series of major actions in a session.

Auditor has to realize a pc 
  can go Exterior in auditing.  
This is usually a Big Win 
as pc realizes she is 
a spiritual being.


Going Exterior and EP
There is a special type of Big Win you need to be aware of. As we have covered the pc, the thetan, or the "I", is not the body but an independent spiritual being.
During the course of auditing the pc as a thetan gets more and more aware of this fact. Thus it can happen that the pc moves out of his body. This is called 'Going Exterior'. He is exterior to his body.

Under normal circumstances this will be a big win for the pc. Realizing one is a spiritual being is no small thing to a Homo Sapiens.

It will usually be accompanied by a persistent F/N and VVGI's. If this happens, the usual action is to smoothly end session.

You wait to indicate the F/N until appropriate, but you don't give one more command or question of any kind. You don't ask pc if 'there is anything he wants to say or ask' (as you usually do at session end), you don't run 'Havingness' processes or anything else. 

You simply end off as you have gotten your EP and a big win.

Different Actions - Different EP's
Different kinds of auditing have different actions and different EP's.

The EP you will be looking for depends on what you are running.

The definition of End Phenomena is "Those indicators in the pc and Meter which shows a process has ended". It is therefore important to exactly know what you are going for on a particular action.

In Engram Clearing of Grade 5 you are looking for erasure of the basic incident on a Chain of incidents, accompanied with F/N, cognition and VGI's.

If you are doing an assist or 'first aide' type of action you may settle for less.

On normal ST 0-4 processes there are also distinctly different types of actions with different expectations to the EP.

If you have a pc who has a heavy ARC break situation, there is a type of auditing called auditing by list. The list will help you to find charge, that can be 'peeled off' one item at the time (List used L1C). The pc can be expected to come up the tone scale a little after each line taken up and F/N'ed. At some point the auditing of the L1C may come to a full EP. In best case scenario the pc will get a dial wide F/N and VVGI's. The EP of the whole action can be expected after charge, little by little, has been removed.

When you fly the rudiments at the beginning of the session (handle ARC breaks, Present Time Problems and Missed Withholds), you are not trying to change the case as on a major action. You simply want to get distractions out of the way so the pc can be audited on a major action. So you take a reading rudiment question and take it to its F/N and the charge is gone.

After rudiments are cleared up you can do a major action such as Grade processes. A major Grade process will run to F/N, Cog, VGI's and release. By release is meant some ability has been regained by the pc on the process. You can only get the full EP of a Grades process, when the pc was set up properly, meaning he had rudiment types questions handled and F/N'ed.

Overrun and underrun both can mess up cases.

You have to be able to recognize the different types of EP's. You need to be able to handle your tools expertly and keep up your speed in auditing.

Don't overrun pc's so they have to be cleaned up afterwards.

And let the pc have his wins.


F/N Everything
When an auditor gets a read on a rudiment question (rud) or on a prepared list like L1C (there are many other prepared lists) he must take the read to an F/N.

If the auditor doesn't do that the pc will accumulate by-passed charge (charge that could have been picked up but was merely restimulated).

If a pc has had several or many reads on various lists and none of them were taken to F/N he may eventually get upset or depressed for no evident reason. As the auditor thinks he has done the list (but actually really hasn't) it is now a mystery what is wrong.

The error was cleaning the read on the rudiment or list, but not taking it to F/N.

(Just 'cleaning a read' was an older system. You would get an answer from pc when there was a read and then recheck the question. If the recheck didn't give a read the question was now 'clean' and not taken further).

In modern auditing you always take a read to F/N.

It is simple to do. If you know the Bank structure you know it is necessary to find an earlier similar item if something won't release and F/N.

If what the pc gave on first being asked was a basic Lock or incident it would F/N then. But the rule is simple, if it doesn't F/N you get an earlier incident or item. If that doesn't F/N either go earlier, earlier until it does F/N.

The Rule is:

Never leave a reading item or a rudiment or an item from a prepared list (repair list) before you carry it to F/N. Go Earlier similar as needed.

Example: The ARC break rudiment question "Do you have an ARC break?" reads. The pc says what it is. Auditor does the ARC break Assessment on it. If there is no F/N at this point auditor asks "Is there an Earlier Similar ARC break?" He gets it from pc and does a new Assessment on this incident. He keeps this up until it F/N's.

Example: "Do you have a Present Time Problem?" reads. Pc tells what it is; no F/N. The auditor asks "Is there an Earlier Similar PTP?" until he gets an F/N.

Example: On an L1C (a so-called repair list that handles upsets) auditor gets a read on "Has a communication been cut short?" The pc answers; no F/N. The auditor asks, "Is there an earlier time a communication was cut short?" Pc answers and gets an F/N.

Other correction lists and repair lists are done in a similar way.

The general rule is:

Every item that reads must be taken to an F/N.

The student will learn many different actions on the next levels of ST. The techniques may differ slightly from simple taking it earlier similar (E/S), but the basic rule is the same:

Every major and minor auditing action must be taken to an F/N.

There are no exceptions!

To do it otherwise will leave restimulated charge on the pc's case.

Also, you indicate the F/N at the conclusion of the action (usually when a cognition occurs).

And remember, don't indicate the F/N too soon as you cut the pc's cognition and that is a source of By Passed Charge too.

Thus "Have reading items been left charged?" would be a key question and is included on correction lists.

Good TRs and F/N'ing every reading item or rudiment question go a long way in keeping your pc's happy and winning.



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