Vol. 6 * Issue 2
January 31, 2003

By Marisa De La Paz,
Contributing Writer

Three years ago, a cut, 9-year-old autistic African-American boy named James was loved by his teachers at the Prescott Elementary School in Charlestown, although they felt there was no hope for him. Like many other autistic children, James would withdraw into a private world of fantasy and be unable to communicate with others or respond to the real environment. He would blankly utter gibberish, sometimes would swing his arms violently and aimlessly, and had to be led to different classrooms, the restrooms, etc., by hand. In each new place, James did not know where he was or what was around him. James had a very severe case of autism and it was believed that James would remain in this condition for the rest of his life.

But hope was on the way in the form of a young, six-foot, four-inch kindergarten teacher, Erik Bayersdorfer, who became a new member of the Church of Scientology. This loving ‘Kindergarten Cop’ pulled out an Oxford American Dictionary to find out more about autism. He learned that it was a condition wherein one is not in communication with his surrounding environment, and decided that there may be hope for James.

Erik used a simple technique called a ‘locational assist’ which was developed by author and Scientology founder, L. Ron Hubbard, to direct a person’s attention off the painful areas of his body or his difficulties and out into the environment – exactly what James could not do.

“I had concerns because James would never seem to do or undestand what anyone was telling him, but then asked him to ‘Look at that window,’ then other things in the environment. At first he didn’t readily comply, but surprisingly, James did do as I asked,” said Erik. “Soon he was fully understanding me and following my instructions.”

“Run, do you want to run?” came clearly out of James mouth that had never uttered a decipherable sound in nine years. Erik was in partial shock while saying, “Sure.” And soon they darted around the school. While actually playing for the first time in his life, James said things like “Catch me.” And “Do you want to play?”

The next day, James was back in his autistic dreamland and Erik gave him another locational assist. This time it was videotaped by another teacher, Becky. James responded immediately to the locational and was on his way playing chase with Erik. Erik gave Becky a booklet on how to do the locational and other assists and she promised to continue helping James. She also said she would show the video of James being helped to faculty so more children could be aided. Erik continued to learn from the staff at the Church of Scientology of Boston, a few days later, in order to gain more expertise in helping people. ‘Locationals and other assists, that alleviate the spritual component of physical pain, shock and emotional trauma should be known by everyone,” said Erik Bayersdorfer. “Assists were successfully used by Scientology Volunteer Ministers to help rescue workers stay on the job at Ground Zero immediately after September 11th and are valuable in everyday life.”

A couple of weeks ago, Bayersdorfer was in Barbados where he saw a homeless man crumpled up on a beautiful boardwalk with debris scattered around him. Erik told him to get up and had him looking at different things in the scenic environment. The person straightened up and isaid in his strong Caribbean accent, “I think it’s time to start my day, man.”

To start someone else’s day, feel free to contact the Church of Scientology at 617-266-9500 to learn more about how to do assists.

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This article reposted by Greg Churilov
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