Redefining Death

PhotoMoodySmartt

For over a year I spent studying one on one with Dr. Raymond Moody, by phone or at his home. I learned so very much from this brilliant, gentle and funny man. From ancient Greek philosophy to the logic of nonsense to the use of a psychomanteum as a vehicle to address grief, he shared generously of his vast store of knowledge and expertise as a medical doctor, doctor of philosophy, and forensic psychiatrist.

And yet…after 50 years of research into near death and shared death experiences, reincarnation…virtually all things surrounding death…he never concluded that consciousness survives death. I cannot now give you the very lengthy definition he used for death…but… it came to the idea of complete annihilation. Period. Zilch. The end. Forever. All work in the field of life after death attempted to explain the paradox of…life…after…death. The phrase is nonsensical.

I suggested something to him that I am not sure he appreciated. I suggested that the very definition was wrong…was predicated on a falsity. I suggested that the definition of death needed to be redefined. I mean…who got to stipulate what death was? And when? Certainly, the ancient Egyptians and other cultures had a vastly different view of death. “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” In any case, after all these years and all this study, it just might be time to redefine death.

With that I invite you today to register for Dr. Moody’s free webinar, “I’m Convinced.” It kicks off the opening of his new online school, The University of Heaven. With his colleague, Lisa Smartt, they will be offering courses of study in many facets of the death. There will be many of the top people in the field of consciousness as guest teachers. And finally, after more than 50 years in the field, Dr. Moody will address his conclusion on whether consciousness does indeed survive what we call death.

For those of you, like me, who have been avid readers and admirers of his work since the beginning, this is a momentous occasion. Dr. Moody is an incomparable teacher, mentor…and friend. I hope you will join “us” this coming Tuesday, October 30th at 7pm ET.

 

Listening Deeply

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I wanted to check in after being silent for some time. It’s not that I haven’t been writing but my focus has shifted to a possible book. It is predicated upon all the work that I did first in death midwifery and now with the Community of Spirits. The idea ignited right around the winter solstice and has been going like gangbusters since. It is a project that, if it comes to fruition, will take a long time…so I wanted to check in and just connect with you.

I won’t speak of the topic. When I was a member of a Western Mystery school, when inspiration is hot, it is suggested to keep the vessel, the inspiration, tightly sealed, keeping things hot, holding the tension, allowing no leakage and therefore no weakening of the inspiration during the creative process. Writing is a fragile thing: it needs protection during its earlier stages. So I hope you will understand.

However, I would like to comment on something I am discovering about this particular process. In my journey to cross the threshold to the world of the “so-called living and the so-called dead” as Rudolf Steiner would language it, I have experimented with many different techniques: mediumship, the psychomanteum, the use of various brainwave entrainment music and various deep states of meditation. I’ve learned something from all of them.

Yet now…I find myself leaving all that behind and just sitting very silently and regularly, breathing deeply…and….listening. Just…listening. Then trusting what comes to me as having value. The source of this information, this dialogue? I am not sure. I do not know if I will reach a place when I do know for sure. Or perhaps the best attitude to take is that of a true skeptic as Dr. Raymond Moody would suggest. He told me that the classical skeptic never reaches a conclusion for to do that closes yourself off from any other possibilities. With your eye firmly on a conclusion you ignore your peripheral vision and therefore can miss miraculous things. That would be a great loss.

So…quietly I sit…listening more and more deeply as I sink down layer upon layer of…what? Mind stuff? The Higher Self? The Enlightened Dead? Yes to all? No to all? It is far too early in the process for me to tell if I ever will. But one thing I know is this: when I reach that place of connection with whatever this is, and we converse…it feels so beautiful…so loving…so safe. So…I must trust that there is purpose to this venture, that it will in some way serve.

I wanted to share that in the hopes that even this little bit of discovery might serve you…and just to connect with you for a bit…you who choose to read my little ramblings.

Thank you.

 

The Sun and What Follows

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My first attempt at mirror gazing at home was with my husband Richard. I purchased as large of a crystal ball as I could and used black curtains to block all light from outdoors. We used an artificial candle behind our yoga chairs (seated on the floor with our backs supported) for a very dim light. We used no music. Our intention was to enter the ball and connect with the Enlightened Dead. We used the Emerald Tablet, an ancient hermetic text considered technically as nonsense (it adheres to some rules of English while breaking others).

First of all, I could feel the very definite shift in energy. Richard has never mirror gazed and I have just a little experience with Dr. Moody. As I have mentioned several times before, his energy gave me a tremendous boost. Now I was doing what I could to boost Richard. I can tell you, it will take us much practice for us to be anywhere near as powerful. We also had our little dogs barking at various passersby. Since there is not a lot we can do about that, we will have to grow strong enough for certain noises and distractions to be overcome. But we persisted.

Challenging as it was, after some few minutes of focusing, the crystal ball expanded for me. It became the Sun – sentient, ancient and wise. It spoke to me saying:

“Child of the Sun, I am your mother and your father. I am the third link in the chain though I am the First Cause behind all things. Lean on me.  Look to me for guidance, for strength, for nourishment, for encouragement, for I love the Earth will all my being and would not have her perish before her time.

Do not be fooled by the Darkness for I am blazing even in the darkest night. Know and trust in me. Feel my radiance pulsing thorough you (I noticed that my hands grew hot and pulsating). Draw on that any time and do not doubt. All who chose to do this work are Children of the Sun. Draw on my Light to Love the Darkness Bright. I am Shemesh.”

It is possible that with so much outside distraction to overcome, I only heard part of Shemesh’s message but what I reported is what I heard. It is also of note that up until recently and for the past ten years, I was part of a Western Mystery tradition of Hermetic Kabbalah. As the Sun, Shemesh, is a vital part of that tradition, it makes sense that I might connect with an energy from that tradition. So one could say that intending to connect with the “Enlightened Dead” has a broad scope and may elicit a variety of responses.

Okay…so…where to go from here? What purpose can it serve? Seeking guidance on this, a kind of process was shown to me. One I have experimented with, with enough success to feel it is worth sharing with you. If you feel called to this particular act of service, you might try the following:

I am assuming that you are drawn to the practice of mirror gazing as this is the particular method we are using to cross the threshold. There are others and as I work with them, I will share them with you but for now, this is the form of practice we are using. It is my feeling that a large mirror, set at a height so that it has no distractions in its reflection, is better than the largest crystal ball. You can get a good idea of creating your own psychomanteum from Raymond Moody’s book Reunions: Visionary Encounters With Departed Loved Ones.

I cannot guarantee what you will discover but once you engage your spiritual practice and have yourself in a state of peace, protection and poise, should you make contact with members of the Enlightened Dead, over time, while in a state of deep Presence, form a chain. See each member of your “team” holding hands, one with another until the last one links hands with you. So for me it was Shemesh with Its dazzling Light, holding the hand of Sarawati’s Sadhu, holding the hand of St. Catherine of Siena, holding my hand.

Again, I do not know what the purpose of your link with the Enlightened Dead will be…but mine was most definitely to help the United States in this time of extreme change. While in meditation, it was given to me to link my free hand, crossing the threshold from the Dead to the Living with Ivanka Trump. She was chosen as the person the President is closest to and perhaps can influence him most lovingly. She then took the President’s hand with her free hand. Now the link was complete. From there I saw brilliant white Light coursing down the link of hands, flowing like a mighty river from Shemesh all the way down into the President, filling him, healing him, nourishing him with wisdom, compassion and loving guidance. Wave after wave coursing into him healing not only him but all who participated in this linking of Beings. Once that link is established, you can easily form it in meditation, repeating it without needing the crystal ball.

Science is beginning to show that the Universe, or more accurately, the Multi-verse, is a hologram. One small change creates changes throughout eternity. Therefore even our smallest endeavors to serve the Light can create important and much needed change, out and forever, on and on. So if this process calls to you, I hope you will consider experimenting with it.

I will leave you with this and see where I am led to speak with you again. Thank you for sharing this journey with me.

 

Cry of the Elephants

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For my second double mirror gazing experience with Raymond Moody, he chose a travel narrative piece of nonsense (which is self-explanatory as it conveys a sense of traveling) to carry us over the threshold and into the mirror. We decided we would have no particular agenda for this trip; we would just see what happened.

Again, piggy backing off Raymond’s considerable experience and energy for this work, I easily entered, or more accurately, was absorbed by the mirror and found myself nose to trunk with a giant and old elephant.

“I will take you through the nephesh,” he told me. “You’ll be safe with me.” He picked me up and placed me gently upon his back. I should explain for those not familiar with the Kabbalah, nephesh refers to the level of soul related to the lower astral and the sephira Yesod. It is also known as the animal soul. There are four or five levels of soul in the Kabbalah depending on the school of thought one follows. The nephesh can be the most problematic as it encompasses the more primitive aspects of man and animal.

We traveled deep into the jungle until we entered a clearing. Here I saw the whole family of this ancient elephant gathered in a circle around a dead bull lying in the center upon the ground.

“Please grieve with us,” the lead elephant asked. “We know you are one whose task it is to feel what others cannot or will not. Grieve his death with us. Poachers killed him for his ivory tusks. We know you know how to grieve. Please help us to grieve his loss.”

I cried with them. Moaned and swayed my body in sync with them. Their trumpeting cries scored my heart with pain. When they felt their grieving complete, the lead elephant asked me to guide their dead brother across the threshold to the other side of life. Once again, he picked me up, and then gently placed me upon the back of the dead elephant whose soul now stood ready for his next journey.

Slowly together, we made our way to a bridge and crossed it. We went as far together as I was able to go, then he gently used his trunk to place me on the ground. He thanked me and made the rest of the journey on his own, as I turned, made my way back over the bridge, back into the nephesh and once more found the circle of elephants that was his family. They stood waiting for me.

“Please,” said the head elephant, “you have always known we have souls, we have emotions. You know that we grieve and mourn the loss of our loved ones just as you do. Some of your kind try to help us. They dye our tusks pink to render them useless to the poachers. Please tell them to do this more and more quickly or soon we will be no more.”

Initially after this mirror gazing experience, I thought it was unrelated to the first one and the others yet to come. Now, however, I understand the relationship and purpose of the experience and am humbled by it. What a blessing, what a gift, to cry with the elephants.

A Touching Visit with R

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While I won’t go into great detail about using the psychomanteum for contacting our beloved dead as a form of grief therapy, I do want to mention it because for many, it may be the most important personal use of mirror gazing.

My second solo visit to the psychomanteum was for the sole purpose of contacting R, my deceased first husband and, I feel, the initiator and co-founder of the Community of Spirits. I’d waited a very long time for this experience and who better to guide me through it than Dr. Raymond Moody.

If you read his book Reunions, at the time you will see he had a very elaborate and lengthy process to undergo before entering the psychomanteum in order to visit with a beloved dead. Over the years he has found that the simpler, the better. So I didn’t need to bring photos or mementos of R. Instead I just talked about him – sharing many memories, happy, sad…sharing the best things about our marriage and my deepest regrets. We did that for at least an hour and it was quite emotional for me. Then Dr. Moody found what I thought was the perfect piece of nonsense poetry (I do not remember its name at this time). It was amazing to me how very moving this piece of nonsense was, how it managed to somehow capture the feeling in my heart, bringing me to tears.

With that, I entered the psychomanteum alone with no music. I was in there for a very long time, likely several hours (Dr. Moody had forgotten a timepiece and wanted to be sure I had plenty of time for the experience). It took a while to get past some normal household noise (his two teenagers were home and their voices were easily heard) but with time, I got past that.

I wish I could say R materialized in the mirror, that he came out and appeared in 3-D next to me. I truly wish I could – but he didn’t. I did see a formation of white in the mirror, as if he was trying to take form but R never materialized visually for me. And honestly – that made me sad, very sad because I had waited so long and prepared for this so long. Tears began flowing down my cheeks. Then…I felt…the lightest touch. It felt like R was running a finger down my tears to dry them. After that…the lightest kiss on my lips. Oh my God! Was I imagining this? But it happened again later in our visit.

What I am finding out with practice is that, we each will receive information or contact in different ways. Clairvoyance or extra sight is not my forte. I hear and feel and smell and know much easier than I see. With his touch, I relaxed into the experience. Again, Dr. Moody cautions us to “try not to try.” Oh yeah, that is easy. But…finally I surrendered to experience in whatever shape it was going to take. I just relaxed and let go of any and all expectations.

Before I knew it, my mind was filled with reminisces – happy ones, sad one, intimate ones, private ones. And he made me laugh as he did in physical life as he was quite the clown. The tears flowed and again I felt his gentle touch tracing my tears, his soft kiss. I told him I was so frustrated that I couldn’t see him like other have with their loved ones…that I couldn’t actually hear his voice, our communication was telepathic.

What he said to that was powerful, he said, “That is because we share the same space.” Rudolf Steiner tells us that the dead are not “somewhere else.” They are right here only at a higher level of frequency. We share the same space. He also tells us that our loved ones can reside within us. That is not a metaphor. Our beloved dead can live right inside us. They have access to all our thoughts, our memories, our emotions. They know us truly better now than when they were in the flesh.

So I believe that might be why I may never see R appear visually in the mirror, nor actually hear his voice. We’ve been communication for a couple of years now, in this different way and I may have to be content with that. Trust in that. Strengthen that.

I also got that sense that though R will always be a part of my team of those across the threshold who will guide this work, a good deal of what he was tasked to do is completed. He was the motivating factor to push me from working with the dying to working with the dead. He will always be there, cheering me on but perhaps in the background a bit more as the others begin to come forward. In the next post, I will begin sharing those encounters with you.

So mirror gazing can be a powerful tool for easing grief by allowing you to connect with your beloved dead. It takes time and practice and patience. It may also take figuring out just how you receive information. But I highly recommend it to seeking out a medium. Why not make direct contact yourself instead of relying on someone else who may or may not be ethical in their practice?

Take good care until next time…

Mirror Gazing: Communing with the Dead for the Betterment of the World

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It’s been a while since I posted an original post on this blog as I was waiting to complete my private three day weekend with Dr. Raymond Moody. Well, I have and now I have a lot to tell you. So this will likely turn into a series of posts as I do not want to tire you with too much information at one time.

The weekend more than met my expectations and I am getting a clearer and clearer idea of just how the Community of Spirits can interact with the so-called dead in a way that serves the world at this time. It is absolutely critical work as the world needs our help, both from the so-called living and the so-called dead more than ever.

I’ve been ruminating over the idea that the work of Rudolf Steiner and Raymond Moody would somehow synthesize. Now I have a good idea how that marriage comes about.

Strict anthroposophists might cringe and mediums won’t like it but I believe I am finding a way to enter the “super-sensible world” without being the rare clairvoyant Steiner was (a show of hands of his students that can actually do what he did is not going to overwhelm you with a sea of hands) while still cutting out the middle man. That has always been the bane of this work, having to rely on someone else’s experience. With this technique of mirror gazing, almost anyone can find their way into the otherworld(s). And from what I gathered from my long weekend with Raymond Moody is this: the world is in desperate need of those willing to do this work to get going now.

I’m thinking about setting up an online seminar to help those called to this act of service but that might take me a while. So in the interim, if you’re serious about using mirror-gazing, I suggest you read Raymond Moody’s Reunions book. That will give you an idea of how to start though things have evolved since he wrote that book.

Mirror gazing is an ancient technique that was been used for as long as history has been recorded but it is often accredited to the ancient Greeks. It takes practice just like developing any skill but it is doable. That is the contribution from Dr. Raymond Moody.

From Rudolf Steiner we are told that the so-called living used to naturally and easily commune with their beloved dead until we developed a fully functioning conscious mind. Then the line of communication was blurred and in most cases broken. He stressed that there is no more important work in the world to do now than, with that fully functioning conscious mind, reconnect with those I call the Enlightened Dead. The Enlightened Dead could be humans from past history (300 or so years ago according to Steiner so that they are developed enough in the super-sensible world to actually help the earth), angelic beings, and others who may have never had an earthly incarnation but are still dedicated to the Earth’s preservation and thriving.

So…that was the task…to explore with Dr. Moody using the psychomanteum or apparition chamber he designed to establish connection with the Enlightened Dead to serve the world in its present crisis.

In addition to the psychomanteum, we explored using various types of nonsense (50 years’ worth of study of the logic of nonsense has convinced Dr. Moody that much like the shaman’s song that sang the shaman to the other world, nonsense can create that same bridge, putting the mind in a higher state in order to perceive higher realities. We are still in the early stage of experimentation with this but I can tell you, it seems to work. Finding out the best styles of nonsense, for what purposes, will take time. But what we experienced this past weekend was very affirming, okay, down right exciting.

We also experimented with something he has never done before. That was double gazing. We both sat in the psychomanteum together using the same form of nonsense and a united intention as our guide to see what happened.

I had two experiences in his psychomanteum going solo; one with no use of nonsense and no agenda and one with a form of nonsense and a clear intention. In both I had definite experiences but nothing compared to my experience of double gazing with Raymond. That experience was a 100 times more potent as I got to piggy-back off the energy of one who has more than 30 years’ experience in mirror-gazing. Intense, detailed, the connection being made so easily and quickly. The information coming so fast, I had to jump up to write it all down before I lost it. I truly hope having those three double gazing experiences will catapult me forward, establishing that level of connection as my new normal. And it affirms the benefit of group gazing. Much like occult group work – the combined energies amplify what the efforts of a single person can accomplish by oneself.

I won’t go into great detail on my solo efforts as there wasn’t as much pertinent info to our cause and some of a strictly private nature. But let me state something very clearly. And if this turns off the new age community and mediums worldwide, so be it. It is this: just as Steiner has stated over and over, as many mystery schools have known for centuries and even the bible tells us, if you are of a more Christian bent, there are dark forces in the other world just as there are here in this world. It is not all fluffy and light, all love, love and nothing but love. Sorry. If that is your contention, I would not advise to you enter into this experiment at all. I think it is very wise to use your chosen spiritual tradition to set up protection for entering the otherworlds. Do not be naïve or I am certain you could run into trouble and fairly quickly too.

In my very first solo trip into the mirror at Raymond’s home, I rather quickly encountered on my left, a being of Light. This being has shown itself to me several times now and not just while mirror gazing. It is not distinct for me, more an outline of white brilliance, and perhaps this might be the “Keeper of the Flame” I have encountered while mirror gazing at my home, I am not sure. Please understand, this is all new to me too. I am learning and reporting as I go along. Certainly I hope that as I gain more experience, my ability to understand all that I am experiencing and correctly interpret what some of the beings I am encountering are telling me will mature.

On my left, there was a dark presence. It would not give me any information about itself but it seemed to want to enter me. I told it that since I did not know what it was or what its intention and purpose was, it could not enter me. It respected that refusal which made me think about vampire lore – the vampire cannot enter your house without an invitation. Several times it pressed on me, kind of saying, “Are you sure? Huh, are you sure?” And each time I said, “I’m sure. No. Leave me alone,” and it did. If I had been of the mindset that everything is light and love in the otherworld, things might have not gone so well. So…that is my warning. I hope any who chose to serve in this way are mature enough to use reason and caution. You have been warned so I will not take responsibility if you choose to be foolish.

Okay, that said and out of the way. I’ll leave us here and pick up where we left off next time. Get the book if you choose this act of service so you will know approximately what you need to begin your own mirror gazing experiments and I’ll write more soon.