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.

 

Artistic feeling/Spiritual faculties

And even more so when we step upon the bridge between this world and the next. I know that there are those who look to science for confirmation of consciousness beyond what we call death…but the heart of an artist is needed too.

The great Rudolf Steiner Quotes Site

It should be remarked that artistic feeling, when coupled with a quiet introspective nature, forms the best preliminary condition for the development of spiritual faculties. This feeling pierces through the superficial aspect of things, and in so doing touches their secrets.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 10 – Knowledge of the Higher Worlds: II: The Stages of Initiation

Translated by George Metaxa

View original post

Today, people still deny the existence of a spiritual realm

Without this understanding, my new book ,which continues to unfold in often surprising ways, could not even begin. Go on…take a deep breath.

The great Rudolf Steiner Quotes Site

Just as mankind has to do with the three realms of nature, he also has to do with three spiritual realms. Now you may say: It is of no consequence whether I believe it or not, for these three kingdoms are not visible, not perceptible. Yes, gentlemen, I have known people, to whom it had to be explained that air exists! They could not believe that there was something like air. When I say to such a person, this is a table – that he can believe, for when he goes to the table, he can knock on the table, and when he looks at it, he sees the table with his own eyes, but he cannot bump into the air. He looks around and says, there is nothing here. However, everyone nowadays admits the existence of air. The existence of air is simply accepted.

In the same way, it…

View original post 167 more words

Good thoughts are like balm to the dead

There is healing grief and there is grief that burdens the dead. Steiner asks that we discern the difference.

The great Rudolf Steiner Quotes Site

Good thoughts are like balm to the dead. No selfish love must be send them, no grieving because the departed is not around any longer; this bothers the deceased and brings to them a heavy burden. The love that remains and makes no claim to still want the dead  here with us, benefits the deceased and increases his or her happiness.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 95 -Vor dem Tore der Theosophie – Stuttgart, September 2, 1906 (page 151)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on August 30, 2015

View original post

Divine Dissatisfaction

boosting-creativity-2 (1)

Listening to my inner guidance while writing my latest book has led me down some surprising avenues. At times, I question my ability to fulfill its edicts. It has me pushing through a lot of self-doubt. Not long ago I came across this conversation between two of the greatest choreographers of the twentieth century: Martha Graham, a pioneer of modern dance and Agnes De Mille, whose choreography for musicals like “Oklahoma” revolutionized musical comedy theatre. Agnes was confused because work she did that she felt was very good was relatively ignored while other works of hers she felt were just okay received acclaim. The following is Martha Graham’s advice to her. I have a copy of it taped to the wall before my computer so I can remind myself what this is all about. I hope you also will find value in it…because we are all Agnes.

A Letter to Agnes DeMille : Martha Graham

There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening
that is translated through you into action,
and because there is only one of you in all time,
this expression is unique.

 If you block it, it will never exist through any other medium
and be lost. The world will not have it.
It is not your business to determine how good it is;
nor how valuable it is; nor how it compares with other expressions.
It is your business to keep it yours, clearly and directly,
to keep the channel open.

You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work.
You have to keep open and aware directly
of the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open.
No artist is pleased.

There is no satisfaction whatever at any time.
There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction;
a blessed unrest that keeps us marching
and makes us more alive than the others.

 

 

What is Real?

Reality

A lot of new people have joined the community recently and I want to thank each one of you for sharing this journey with me. I don’t post as many original blogs these days as I am committed to writing my new book. It’s a bit of a surprise as I never thought I would write another book after The Art of Death Midwifery. Then this past winter solstice the premise of a book struck me like lightning. I’ve been writing every day since.

This book draws on all the various experiences of my life and yet…I am often stunned by what is evolving. Generally, I do not talk about a book while I am writing it but because of its surprising nature I spoke with my friend and mentor, Dr. Raymond Moody, about it. I have such deep respect for this work, his intelligence, his experience and his genuinely kind heart that I wanted to run it by him and see what he thought. He is a medical doctor and a psychiatrist in addition to being the grandfather of the modern near-death experience after all.

After I laid out what has transpired in the writing of this book thus far, I asked him, “Am I nuts?” Yes, those exact words. He very thoughtfully assessed what I told him and how I told it to him. “No,” he said, “Your voice is energetic and bright but I do not detect any signs of psychosis.” He also assured me that what I had described to him is not out of the range of possibility. In fact, he said with all the discoveries in science and our universe, with all the infinite possibilities we continue to discover, he asked, “What is real?” Or as my much-loved songwriter sang, “The real world is really unreal.”

As much as I wish I didn’t feel the need for validation, it was great comfort to get the Dr. Moody seal of approval, with his promise to read my book before publication.

This book is coming together in an entirely different way than my first and one thing I am discovering is that body chemistry plays an important role in my being able to sense the very subtle energies I connect with. A few months ago, I had to change thyroid medications. I had a choice of going lower than my normal dose or higher as the new medication didn’t offer the exact dose I was on. I tried lower and saw that gradually I began to gain some weight. So just recently, I tried the higher dose. That felt awful…sleep difficulties, feeling like being crushed in a vise…and an inability to sense the subtle energies required for my work to go forward. So…I had to make a choice: weigh less and give up the work or go down to the lower dose, gain a few pounds and restore the sensitivities needed. As much as I dread gaining weight, the choice is clear. I’m back to the lower dose and beginning to be able to sense the subtle energies again. Whew! It was a little scary when they left.

Vanity aside, it becomes clear that in order to do the work that is unique to you…and each of us have that work…the work that only you can do and that is very much needed by the world…you will be called to make sacrifices…large and small. It is my wish that the choice will be easy for each of you.

So…I’ll check in from time to time with an original thought but mostly I will send along quotes from Rudolf Steiner and others that touch in some small way upon the work I am doing. And if you are currently pursuing the work that the Universe asks of you, the work only you can do, I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment on this page and let us know what that is…if you can.

Until then…

Kamaloka – The positive develops out of the negative (1 of 3)

Exploring some of the work my next book will address, I’m learning there are ways the so-called living may assist the so-called dead in metabolizing the kamaloka experience. Understanding what kamaloka is, is the first step.

The great Rudolf Steiner Quotes Site

One idea, one characteristic, which has indeed been expressed many times already, but which we will once more bring forward in connection with the life which occupies a third of the earth-life just elapsed, and which we are accustomed to call the life in Kamaloka. If you are living here on the earth and somebody strikes you, you are aware of it. You perceive it, and say: he has struck me. And as a rule it makes a difference whether somebody hits you, or whether you hit him, and if you hear something said by someone, you have not the same experience as when you yourself say something.

All this is quite reversed in Kamaloka life, in which we live our life backwards between death and rebirth. To use this rough illustration it is then as follows. If you have given anybody a blow in life, you feel what the…

View original post 99 more words