Reunions

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Two weeks ago I had the great honor to attend a weekend workshop held by Dr. Raymond Moody in Rowe, MA. Based on his book “Reunions”, which I highly recommend reading, we spent the weekend preparing for an opportunity to connect with dead loved ones using an ancient Greek technique known as the psychomanteum.

Dr. Moody has visited the famous Necromanteion of Ephyra near the Acheron River in Greece and learned about the rituals those who aspired to make contact with their beloved dead underwent – 29 days in the dark, making their way through labyrinths, crawling under very low archways, spending hours talking to the priests about those they wished to connect with, inhaling fumes of hashish. After nearly a months’ worth of preparation, they made their way to a cauldron supported by a tripod and there in the reflection of the water, would hope to connect and communicate with their much loved dead.

We spent a good deal of time understanding the history and literary background of the Necromanteion and thoughts of the various ancient Greek philosophers about the afterlife. Honestly at times, it felt as if we had been transported back into time, sitting at the feet of Socrates and carrying on the dialogues. We also learned about what we would need to build a modern day version of the psychomanteum.

Obviously the elaborate and time intensive way the Greeks prepared for visiting with this dead is not really viable in the 21st century. Dr. Moody has, in his book and during this weekend, settled on the most important elements in a modified version better suited to today. We were able to experiment with it and perhaps get a small taste of the experience with the hope that we would continue the practice on our own.

Basically, Dr. Moody refers to this practice as “mirror gazing.” Many different modalities can be used – mirrors, crystal balls, scrying bowls, polished obsidian stone, shiny bottles, etc. but that weekend we used mirrors and darkened rooms with dimly lit candles. I won’t go into too much detail as you can read about it in his book if you are so inclined. I would just say that his has modified his technique a bit since writing the book to make it simpler and easier to do.

He suggested that to begin with; go into the psychomanteum with no preconceived agenda, then over weeks and months, perhaps even years, to then begin evoking the dead. Since I knew I would be working with him privately at his home in Alabama and our time this weekend was limited, that is what I chose to do, though some desperately needed to connect with lost loved ones. This technique has far reaching applications in grief therapy and many find even five years after their experience that their grief has been greatly reduced. Some during the weekend were successful in making contact; some were not…though some experienced bedside visitations from their beloved dead that night when they went to sleep. I had a truly unexpected and rather psychedelic experience I am still trying to wrap my head around today but did not make contact with the dead.

Now here is the interesting thing about this process and why I am pursuing it as adjunct to Rudolf Steiner’s work. Steiner himself admits that his process of entering the “supersensible worlds” is infinitely difficult. Very few of this students are successful. He assures us, though, that if we cannot access the worlds ourselves, we can trust the reporting of those precious few who can. And you know…somehow that bothers me. I am not giving up on learning the technique Dr. Steiner offers but the “mirror gazing” technique, which has been practiced in many cultures for thousands of years, has been used successfully by almost everyone of sound mind, with practice, who has the ability to let go of results and “not try.”

You see…I just don’t like relying on someone else’s experience. I want direct experience myself – not through mediums and not even through the genius of Steiner. I prefer to be my own crash test dummy. So I have started my own private practice, at home, with my first rendition of “mirror gazing.” It so far, it has been very, very interesting though I am not ready to share my experiences as they are too new and too few. Also, there are many ways one can use mirror gazing beyond communication with dead loved ones and I am very interested in experimenting with all the ways this might be used to help “bring down the Light,” as we need it now more than ever.

Until I go to work privately with Dr. Moody in January, I will be practicing with mirror gazing and journaling my experiences. But this is just one phase of my work with Dr. Moody. We are in the process of defining a project to work together upon using his logic of nonsense as a means of “cross dimensional” travel. So there is a LOT of work yet to be done. And as I know what it is, I will it share with you.

 

When the Gods Speak to Us

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“Initiation is precisely this: that we are able to see from the other side of the threshold. There, seeing is not just looking but is also reading. We read the spiritual deeds of spiritual beings who have brought everything into existence. And if we read long enough in this silence, if we put our heart and soul into this reading, we begin to hear in the spirit, and then the gods speak to us. And when the gods speak to us we are within the spiritual world.” —Rudolf Steiner

I have just returned from my weekend workshop with Dr. Raymond Moody in Rowe, MA. I will be writing more in detail soon but this quote from Steiner sums it up beautifully. This is where I am heading. This is what it is all about for me. With the technique propounded by Dr. Moody, it is something most everyone can learn to do. And, I believe, it is one of the things this world needs now…more than ever.

Until then…

A Simple Act of Service to the Dead

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Friday I will be heading to Rowe, Massachusetts to attend Dr. Raymond Moody’s workshop, “Reunions, visionary encounters with departed loved ones!” The more I become familiar with his work, the more I feel strongly that I will find the synthesis between his work and Rudolf Steiner’s in communing with the dead. When I return I will, of course, tell you all about it but I would like to leave you today with a simple yet elegant way to serve the dead while strengthening your bond with those you love across the threshold.

One of the most important acts of service you an offer those you love who have died is to read to them. This can take many forms but the simplest is to actually read spiritual materials to them. According to Steiner, the dead are no longer interested in or can connect with the mundane and/or abstract thoughts of the physical world. But spiritual thoughts read to them with great love, act as nourishment and even as art for the dead. Without these spirituals readings, the dead can actually starve.

It can be any book of a spiritual nature, something that they were interested in during their physical life or something entirely new. Even those souls who never had an interest in spiritual things while in the flesh will be very grateful for you reading to them now.

I’ll share what I do but please know you can set up your practice in the way that is most satisfying to you. I’ve collected scores of books on Steiner’s theories about life between death and rebirth, destiny, reincarnation, karma, etc. and I use them primarily as I too am learning as I read. I choose to read in the evening in bed so that these thoughts will fill my dreamtime, the place where the living and the dead coexist, and my beloved dead can soak them up most easily. I read most nights but I do not make it a chore. If I am too tired or not in the right mood, I will let a night go by…but most nights I read.

I lay out pictures of those in my “reading circle” focusing on each one with love and inviting them to join me. I wait and usually feel them connect to me. Not always, but most times. And I feel confident that even if I don’t feel a sure connect, they are there just the same. Then I invite my guardian or guiding angel and the angels of each member of the circle to join us, affirming that our communication and bond grows stronger, clearer, more consistent and precise each time we gather. Next I say a little prayer that is meaningful to our purpose.

Then…I read. Usually I read aloud but that may fade into silent reading as time goes on. In some texts, Steiner says to read aloud, others times he says to read silently. I think you should do what feels right to you and your circle at the time. I read for as long as I can stay fully present with the material. If I become cloudy or tired, the images do not translate well for the dead, so I stop for the evening, closing with another little prayer and thanking everyone for attending with the invitation to join me again next time.

Steiner asserts over and over again that this is one of the most important acts of service we can perform for our beloved dead. I can also tell you it is extremely fulfilling for me as well. The intimacy and the feeling of them actually being there, which they are, is so strong at times, it brings me to tears.

So, I hope you will try it out and see if this is something you could also offer your beloved dead. It is a first step…one of many I will share in time, in building the bridge between the so-called living and the so-called dead that is absolutely essential during this time on earth. Both sides of the veil need this bridge desperately. Each of us can play our part. This is one small step I urge you to take. Until I return from Rowe…