Archives for posts with tag: Near Death Experience

 

Credit: wallpapre.brothersoft.com

Credit: wallpapre.brothersoft.com

 

In probing the ‘After-Life’, World of Spirits, we moved from Near Death Experiences to episodes of Past Life repressions by eminent psychiatrists and hypnotherapists providing glimpses of that alternative reality which many described as our real Home World. We now look at it more closely through the eyes of a renowned American psychic and medium. Sylvia Browne for the past 50 years and more has established herself as possibly the most remarkable psychic, medium, channel and clairvoyant of the New Age, whose personal experiences and hypnotic regression appear to reveal all the secrets of that mystical world where souls are at home before and after life on the physical plane.

Her findings have been steeped in controversy with allegations of fraud by none other than a former estranged husband. Many of her forecasts and predictions have been proved erroneous and eminent sceptics and atheists have challenged her claims in the public domain. Yet, police and even the FBI are believed to have quietly relied on her sixth sense to apprehend criminals with satisfaction. She claims that these challenges were indeed of her own choosing in the Theme of Life Chart of her present incarnation wherein her soul itself inserted such negativities to hone her skills and for its own evolution in overcoming them.  Frankly I don’t see why a psychic is made to indulge in the business of making forecasts. A psychic is not an astrologer or palmiest after all. There is little doubt that she has paranormal abilities which does not need to be tested in such a public manner. It is like asking a great athlete to prove himself not merely on the parallel bars but to swallow fire and pierce his cheeks with flaming rods. She is a psychic not a circus performer.

If we wander into any Barnes and Noble bookshop in NYC to the section on philosophy, mysticism, the paranormal and New Age, we would find a whole shelf dedicated to the display of her books, several of which have been on the # 1 New York Times’ bestseller list. One can also find her numerous interviews with Larry King and the Montel Williams Show and several others on the internet. She has also set up a church inspired by the Gnostics called Novus Spiritus and the Nirvana Foundation of Psychic Research. She has also studied theology and world religions and interacted with priests, yogis, Tantriks, nuns, rabbis and Zen masters.

Her psychic abilities became evident from early childhood. She claims that her family history is full of psychics for almost 300 years, including her grandmother, son and granddaughter. She began having visions and premonitions of impending events from the age of five. As she grew to adulthood and began having frequent visitations from her Spirit Guides Francine and Raheim she began to doubt her sanity believing that she now fitted perfectly the description of a schizophrenic until Francine sought to disabuse her of her fears. Francine then by pre-arrangement materialized before her sceptical parents and sister. After that she never questioned her sanity and seriously began her quest. She began to give talks and lectures, many of which were ‘delivered’ by her Spirit Guide Francine by channeling through her. She also began regressive hypnotherapy to help cure psychic conditions.

Her knowledge of the ‘Other Side’ comes from her perpetually chattering companion and Spirit Guides Francine and Raheim, her own Near Death Experience (NDE), her claims to Astral Travel together with those of her son Christopher and granddaughter  in dreams and trances ( Out of Body Experiences OBE) and her questioning of patients and clients through regressive hypnotherapy.

Sylvia Browne

Sylvia Browne

The picture she paints generally matches those of persons who have undergone NDE and the reports of Regression therapies of psychiatrists and hypnotherapists we have covered earlier:  the soul moving out of the body and viewing it, the tunnel into which it is drawn, the growing light on the other side, the reception by guide Spirits, relatives and friends, recuperation, reconditioning and healing, the review of the last life, realization, acknowledgement and judgement of ones own failures in the charted mission goals that one had set, discussions with the Council of Advanced souls, the Elders, further research and threadbare examination of the course of that life, choice of reincarnation by the soul itself rather than God or Karma or anyone else, the existence of more elevated souls that do not need to incarnate, like elders, angels, teachers and Masters, the peaceful and tranquil, non judgemental environment of the Spirit world full of love and familiarity, preparation for reincarnation into the physical world at an appropriate time of the soul’s choosing, freedom to choose location, environment, parents, family and chart of a new life, including negativities and challenges and time and manner of exit, the dire need for reincarnation for soul’s evolution through experience of negativities on the physical plane and the challenge to overcome them, the presence of dedicated Spirit Guides throughout ones life time, the acceptance of all religious denominations and cultures as equally necessary and ennobling.

While all these attributes of life on the Other Side are familiar to us from previous posts, in her path breaking book ‘Life on the Other Side – A Psychics Tour of the After Life’ ( copyright @ Sylvia Browne, SIGNET 2001, New American Library, a division of Penguins Group USA) she dwells in great detail on remarkable facts about the spiritual world on the Other Side which provide fresh insight on a topic hardly explored elsewhere.

What emerges is a kind of parallel living world in an alternate dimension ( barely a few feet away) which in many ways resembles our physical world as a kind of prototype. Incredibly, the spirit world is remarkably similar to the physical one with all the continents (add Atlantis) oceans, mountains and peoples inhabiting it as spirits. A glorious perpetual dawn ( no day and night), and clement weather (no storms) however distinguish it from the volatility of the physical one. It is also ‘timeless’ and its inhabitants are all aged about 30 years in perpetuity. Thought creates instant mobility ( no need for cars or vehicles). Thought also provides instant construction of homes, ones we have always dreamed of ( no need for masons or architects). Individual personalities and preferences are the permanent  identity and stamp of each souls’ identity, some have humour, others are serious and sedate etc all with diverse abilities and ambitions. Spirits are not intangible or wispy but have bodies and even, unbelievably, organs ( heart, lungs, kidneys – the works), though there is no production of ‘waste’, no ageing, no disease. A soul can enjoy eating what it likes in the early stages of rehabilitation, though it is not necessary for survival – you may cook your favourite meal for a while till you don’t want to anymore. There is no termination of ‘life’ which is eternal. Communication is possible through language or telepathy. Every manner of entertainment is universally available.

Flora and fauna are at their resplendent best, never withering, with unmatched scenic beauty and gardens. animals and birds abound adding to the beauty of the spiritual ‘nature, though there are no insects!. Spirits specialize in all manner of activity and research. Most inventions on the physical plane are first conceived by spirits in their research centres ( they are presently working on eradicating AIDS and Cancer)! Spirits pursue careers as scientists, artists, philosophers, students, performers, teachers, thinkers, healers – you name it. Schools, libraries, research centres, areas for socializing and recreation abound. In a word, spirits are busy with their lives and have fun also. Spirits can also adopt any appearance they wish without loosing their identity or recognition.

Spirits however do not suffer from anger, hatred, envy, greed, or any other negative quality. spirits also do not engage in sex ( sorry). However when they feel deeply intimate toward one another, they ‘merge’ exquisitely, sharing in harmony all their knowledge of one another, which is more profound, intimate and satisfying than sex could ever be !  Spirits also have gender and retain the same gender throughout eternity, despite reincarnating as either male or female for evolution. The institution of marriage does not exist on the spirit side ( redundant), nor are there any families, though there are friendly groups and clusters of like-minded souls at the same level of development who are closer than any family could be.

On arrival back at the spirit world the soul observes certain important buildings. The Hall of Wisdom where scanning machines help one to review in holograms, ones past life experiences, for evaluation. Then there are the Towers, where troubled and disoriented returnees are cacooned for healing. There are also the Hall of Records and the Hall of Justice where distinguished Elders help in a detailed examination of lives on the physical plane.The Hall of Tones is for meditation and chanting while the Hall of Voices for hearing the celestial songs of angels.

In due course spirits decide to reincarnate (reluctantly) after deciding upon a chart for a new incarnation. Before departure they have the privilege of an audience with a messiah of their preference ( Christ, Buddha etc)  which is fulfilling. energizing and empowering beyond measure. The final stage is a twilight sleep and transfer to a waiting womb of ones choice.

The story of an After Life Paradise through a psychic and medium’s perspective and experience, does appear at times like an incredible fairy tale or a scene from a fantastic science fiction movie, particularly the aspects which show that the spirit world is quite as tangible and physical as our own. But this should be neither surprising nor novel. All religions after all speak of such a Paradise, a ‘land of milk and honey’. peace and plenty, eternal fulfillment and bliss, constant satisfaction. We have the Christian Paradise full of angels, the Muslim Zannah with Houris, the Hindu Swarg Lok with dancing Apsaras – if you research these concepts in the respective scriptures you will find some echoes of Sylvia’s Paradise.

Sylvia also speaks of a dark side, though it is not ‘Satanic’ in the sense of being ruled by a Satan with horns and a pitchfork. Those beings who commit irremediable crimes with no trace of remorse or repentance are souls that deny and refuse to embrace the light and are neither received by the light, at death nor find a place in ‘Paradise’ but quickly return through a dark abyss into another womb until some action eons later provides a glimmer of hope. Even they are not eternally lost though, being doomed to return age after age as dark entities without spirit guides to help them along the way, particularly because they reject help. The effort to redeem them however continues and one day they may see and accept the light. They till then dwell in a dark and lonely isolation and they may well intrude into your charted course of life uninvited as someone in your closest circle who exhibits evil traits with little hope of redemption.

Sylvia’s ‘Paradise’ appears to reflect the beliefs of several cultures and religions. Her description of buildings and monuments in the Spirit World with gothic arches and Greco-Roman architecture clearly are Western in their inspiration. On the other hand her repeated assertion that God has a male and female aspect, intellectual and emotional, combined as one, are Eastern. The ‘Mother goddess’ she speaks of with flowing hair and a staff in one hand, though robed in a classical western gown, has a lion standing beside her, clearly inspired by the popular Hindu depiction of the ‘Mother’ (Ma), epitomizing the energy of god and the universe (the concept of Shakti in Hinduism) astride a tiger or a lion. In the Hall of Tones, the chanting actually begins with the Sanskrit word Om, common to most religions of Indian origin when commencing a prayer and referring to the sound of creation. Paradise then does not neglect either Eastern or Western inspirations in becoming their prototype!

Sylvia’s Paradise though supported by scriptural analogies, is not always easy to accept no matter how comforting. It is one thing to accept that the soul is eternal and survives after death and that it reincarnates for its own evolution through experiencing the challenges and negativities of the physical plane and that it is welcomed after death into the spirit world, embraced by divine light and love – quite another to allow magnificent and thoroughly tangible scenic beauty, bodies with organs, buildings with halls and marble benches, scanning machines with holograms, records of lives being maintained in scrolls in libraries, dressing for events with just a flicker of a thought, wandering through superb gardens and a host of other physical activities  we never imagined  spirit worlds would, could or even needed to engage in.

From a metaphysical standpoint, those of us who are so inclined, would only allow a divine spirit to confine its physical activity to the human body when incarnating on the physical earthly plane rather than carrying forward a physical ‘hang-over’ to the spiritual one. All we would allow is an urge for the soul to be finally free of the physical and as pure spirit to seek to reunite blissfully with its divine source to become one again with the creative force, rather than enjoying separation. The idea of divinity within as a drop, merging back into the divinity of the grand ocean which creates the mirage (Maya) of the physical world, rather than itself becoming yet another physical albeit elevated mirage. Even if we were to allow this physical ‘Paradise’ to have any reality, it would only be another intermediate manifestation of the divine mirage or illusion (Maya). Only another physical level to be transcended.

To be fair, Sylvia does hint or address this issue when she speaks of levels of advancement for the soul. The Seventh level ( seventh heaven?) is as she says where the ‘rare’ souls lose their very identity and merge into the ‘ uncreated mass’  or the ‘ infinite, unfathomable force field from which the love and power of God emanates’. That is surely the ulterior dimension from which it never returns either as a spiritual entity or as an incarnation. Compare this with the Hindu concept of the last incarnation of an embodied soul where after it totally merges with the Absolute it  never incarnates again. She uses the same analogy as in Eastern cultures – the drop falls back into the ocean or as she puts it ‘ a cup of water spills into the Pacific Ocean’.

She however confesses that the ‘Seventh Level’ is not for her, as she would rather remain in a ‘spiritual world’  which still resembles the physical one.

In the Hindu scripture the Gita, there is a revealing passage which says:

”Worshppers of the gods go to the gods, worshippers of the ancestors go to the ancestors, worshippers of the ghosts go to the ghosts; but those who worship Me come to Me.”

Thus those who cannot overcome the need for physicality return to those realms (Paradise?), while those that have advanced merge with the pure spirit of Godhead.

Caption: wallpapersus.com

Caption: wallpapersus.com

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Credit: jeffreyolsen.com

Credit: jeffreyolsen.com

We began our exploration of the spirit world with a conception about the soul and its reincarnation, through Hindu scriptures, mainly the Gita. Later we compared the concept as appearing in Christian and Judaic theology, with the emerging thought on the subject by New Age scholars and writers, particularly James Redfield and GaryZukav. New Age concepts of the soul were remarkably similar to  Hindu concepts, allowing both reincarnation and effects of the law of Karma, yet different when viewing it as less than  divine and quite fallible, though ethereal.

I also sought to link the investigations and discoveries of quantum physics and biology with metaphysical thought, showing that science and spiritualism reflected similar thinking on the theme of the basic unity of the universe and our own existence, through the writings of scientists like Fritjof Kapra, David Bohm, Rupert Sheldrake and scholars like Renee Weber, Lynne McTaggart, Peter Russel and James Redfield. We also viewed the practice of meditation and visualization, particularly of pioneers like Jose De Silva to link the resulting para normal abilities they impart to practitioners, with an interlinked purposeful and benign universe.

The next step would be to probe the spiritual world itself to the extent that it allows us to unravel its closely kept secrets. Scriptural pronouncements and the theology of different religions over millenia have indeed sought to provide theories and presumptions about the nature of God and the spiritual realms and for believers and the faithful this presumably is satisfactory and sustaining. But lately over the past century ‘Near Death Experiences’, Hypnotic Regression and mediums appear more intensively to have unravelled the spiritual world’s closely guarded secrets, one can only imagine with its deliberate sanction, for a purpose. The revelations appear to be remarkably corroborative of each other and match many New Age presumptions and speculations on the subject. While there is a whole range of literature on the subject, I will only review some of  the books that have had a profound influence on me in shaping my thoughts to present a gist of their revelations of the spiritual world.

Betty J. Eadie

Betty J. Eadie

I would like to begin with a New York Times bestseller, ‘Embraced by the Light’ by Betty J. Eadie (Bantam Books 1992). Betty wrote of her extraordinary Near Death Experience during a major surgery. First hovering near the ceiling she saw her body below. Three stately glowing spirits who had ‘known her for an eternity’ materialized to comfort and reassure her with love before she felt as if being drawn into a great tornado which swallowed her. Then through this dark tunnel she rushed towards a glowing figure of celestial brilliance and was embraced by it in love and reassurance. She felt that the figure could be none other than Jesus.

So many questions were instantly answered. All religions upon earth were necessary because people needed what they taught. Each church fulfilled spiritual needs that possibly others could not for a particular people. All were important and precious. Very special people with important missions had been placed in all countries. Spirits in the spirit world took part in the continuous process of creation on earth. Prototypes of planets and solar systems were first created on a spiritual plane like blue prints, later being translated to reality on the physical plane. Souls incarnated on earth for a time so as to assist their spiritual growth through the earthly experience. As spirits we had a mission on earth chosen by us. Spirits of family members also bonded with us to help us complete our mission and their’s. All were valiant spirits even the least developed ones. We remained free to act in any way we pleased without any intervention by providence. We learnt important lessons both from joy and sorrow. The battle between the spirit and the body helped in developing both. Love, compassion and service of others helped the spirit grow enormously. Both positive and negative  experiences of life were chosen by us as spirits for our development. Even the cause (often painful and traumatic) and timing of our death was by choice. Difficult lessons were learned at the close of life. Our greatest challenges became our greatest teachers.

Betty’s spirit travelled to different realms of the spirit world. She encountered a library of thought for acquiring knowledge. There were areas where spirits gathered to exchange thought.

After death the spirit went to the level of development best suited for it where it would be comfortable. She met one enthusiastic spirit, brilliant and dynamic readying to incarnate as a mentally handicapped person as that would help both it and the parents spirits to grow in dealing with the trials and tribulations of dealing with the handicap. Finally she returned to earth, as her death was considered premature and she had to complete the mission she had set herself. At the moment of descent she was surrounded by cheering angels who applauded her courageous decision to return.

Betty does not claim to be a scholar, mystic or philosopher. A householder with several children and grandchildren she is now a successful businesswoman. The daughter of a Sioux-Indian mother, she was reared in Nebraska, South Dakota. After her experience she became a counselor and hypnotherapist. She has appeared on television in the USA and Japan and participated in programmes in universities on Near Death Studies. In a word she is a quite ordinary person, like you or me, who happened to have such an extraordinary experience.

Her Christian upbringing doubtless moulded her phraseology and her experiences are interpreted within a Christian frame of thought and terminology. Thus in her slim book which sold several million copies, she refers to the soul simply as spirit. Given her brief journey into the spirit world from which she was sent back to ‘complete her unfinished mission’, there is reference to incarnation but no reference to reincarnation or rebirth. Furthermore, she identified the being of effulgent light that embraced her as Jesus himself. She also speaks of the dark forces of Satan and other negative entities who create hindrances in the path of spiritual development. It is possible that the references arise from her earthly mind-set framed in traditional Christian beliefs. But if we filter these aside through rational thinking we would still be left with the essence of her experiences.

For instance the moving out of the body to view it at death, the allowance to visit her family who were unaware of her death in the transition, the tunnel through which one passes on, the light at the end of the tunnel, the glorious radiant beings full of love and reassurance receiving her, the feeling of utter peace and tranquility rather than fear, the knowledge gained in a short span of time before her return of the need for all religions on earth, the spirit’s freedom of choice of birth on the physical plane in certain particular circumstances with abilities and disabilities that would help in its evolution, the glimpse of spirits or souls at different levels of evolution in the spiritual realms, the areas of the spiritual world dedicated to creation and inspiration, angelic beings that applaud the valiant spirits that descend to incarnate for their own evolution, the immense power of prayer and its response from the spirit world, the understanding that suffering is a necessary pre-requisite for growth and development, the acknowledgement that an apparently disabled person, a destitute and poverty striken person may indeed be an advanced soul on a path of evolution, therefore the need to eschew being judgemental, the fact that we  at all times are  being helped by a compassionate providence which may appear harsh for creating necessary trials and adverse circumstances for our development, indeed that we ourselves have selected the course of our roller coaster ride on the physical plane.

This case is important because it is related first hand, not through hypnotherapy or mediums. It is a first hand report of an experience, without the trammels of sophisticated analysis, philosophical interpretations or through the lens of theology and religious dogma. It therefore has its own unique value.

Later I propose in succeeding posts to present case studies of similar experiences in the clinics of eminent psychologists, parapsychologists, hypnotists and mediums, to throw more light on the world of spirit.

I will be concluding the series with the most extraordinary presentation of case studies of ‘life between lives’ by the eminent Master Hypnotherapist and psychologist Michael Newton PhD. Newton went beyond merely inducing past life experiences of his clients and focussed on the world of the spirit. His books are seminal in providing us a glimpse of what the spirit world is like, why souls incarnate, how  they evolve, and what are the ascending order of spirit leading to God. His facts are not based on hypothesis or speculation. He relies for his facts on the recounting by clients  under hypnosis of their soul’s home world. After being regressed beyond birth the clients subconscious reveals its hidden memories of life in the spirit world. ( More on Michael Newton’s book ‘Journey of Souls’ in a subsequent post )

This last book made the greatest impact on my thinking revealing in a rationally convincing manner what I had been unable to find even in scriptures, philosophical treatises or speculations by mystics of what the spirit world could be like. I am convinced that this has only become possible because mankind is now ready and mature enough to receive the information which hitherto has been held from it. the spirit world apparently now wishes within limits to reveal some of its secrets.

Credit: thespiritscience.net

Credit: thespiritscience.net

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