Blog: L. Ron Hubbard's Obsession with Instant Reads - 2017-12-16
A read—very basically the movement of an e-meter needle from left to right—is what auditors use to determine whether an item in their PC's mind is "charged" and should be addressed.
LRH wrote in HCOB 5 Aug 78, that "the correct definition of instant read is that reaction of the needle which occurs at the precise end of any major thought voiced by the auditor. All definitions which state it is fractions of seconds after the question is asked, are cancelled. Thus an instant read which occurs when the auditor assesses an item or calls a question is valid and would be taken up and latent reads, which occur fractions of seconds after the major thought, are ignored. Additionally when looking for reads while clearing commands or when the preclear is originating items, the auditor must note only those reads which occur at the exact moment the pc ends his statement of the item or command."
He defined major thought as "the complete thought being expressed in words by the auditor. Reads which occur prior to the completion of the major thought are prior reads. Reads which occur later than its completion are latent reads." Prior and latent reads are not taken up.