I recently visited the ashram that Maharishi Mahesh Yogi built at the central point of India, the Brahmasthan. Two thousand Vedic pandits live there, meditating and performing ceremonies.
I've been doing Transcendental Meditation for many years and have had wonderful results in my active life -- clearer thinking, less stress, more energy -- but I've had very few experiences while meditating. A couple of times a year I might have a moment when the thoughts thin out enough for me to sense there is a field of silence underlying them. Very rarely I've glimpsed a bit of glow coming from that underlying field. I treasure these few moments.
In my first program in the yogic flying hall I felt deep silence as soon as I started meditating. And it didn't go away as it always had before. It lasted, and it glowed. When I started the sutras, I gradually became aware that the silence had an energy to it, an inner dynamism. As I went on, joy began radiating from it like sunlight. (more…)
Recently I listened to a well-known politician advocate for healthcare reform on a television program where he was discussing his work in pushing legislation that would require health insurance companies to treat mental illness as a legitimate treatable disease so that people who suffer from various psychological dysfunctions and disorders can be covered for treatment. His contention is that most mental problems are due to physiological causes in the brain (which then delineates the condition “medical”) and that if the brain is treated through various drugs and other medical treatments, the patient can get better.
Though I agree that health insurance companies should view mental illnesses as legitimate medical conditions that need to be treated, we need to go even further in how we, as a total society, perceive illness and the treatment of it. When we citizens of a culture can change our mindsets about causes of disease and healing, then the systems within our society will change to fit that consciousness. Thus the economic, political, medical, educational, and other institutions of mainstream culture will cooperate with the expanded consciousness of the population to create more effective and efficient healthcare systems that provide for all of its citizens regardless of financial or social status. (more…)
Colin Wilson is one of the most thorough and prolific researchers and writers on the paranormal of recent years. Mysteries was written as a sequel to Wilson’s The Occult, and continues and extends the theme of that classic investigation into the world of the unknown.
Mysteries begins by floating the possibility that the “self” actually consists of a hierarchy of levels that may be likened to a ladder with higher rungs of shorter and shorter length (presumably meaning they are harder to experience, or are reached by fewer souls). Wilson adopted this concept after experiencing a series of panic attacks that were ended by his invoking a higher self (which he refers to as the schoolmistress effect). (more…)
As we learn to love one another, we come to realize that, in their purest forms, all religions teach the same basic spiritual truths: It is only the different ways we express them that divides us. Each system of belief has a different piece of the puzzle, and ultimately, to heal our communities and our world, we will have to fit these different pieces together and realize the essential truths that connect us all as one. In order to allow this to occur, we must open our hearts to hear beyond language and to expand in our understanding. (more…)
Floater structures in the visual arts of modern and present-day shamans
By Floco Tausin
This article is based on the assumption that prehistoric shamanic rituals include the perception, interpretation and depiction of what we today call ‘eye floaters’ (muscae volitantes). It is suggested that, together with other shamanic symbols, floaters continue to be experienced and depicted in later shamanic societies up to the present day. The present article supports this thesis from the examples of modern Siberian and contemporary Tukano shamans. A closer look at their visual arts reveals geometric structures and characteristics that are typical of eye floaters. (more…)
First published in 1999, Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now has become an international bestseller. Written as a series of questions and answers, it presents a radical analysis of humanity's current state and offers a revolutionary route back from unhappiness to enlightenment, which this article attempts to give the merest flavor of. If you read just one Spiritual book in your life, The Power of Now is a very strong contender to be that book. (more…)
There is always more than one route to the outcome you are seeking. However, to keep it simple, we will only explore a couple of starting points here. To allow your mind access to "other worlds," you might find it useful to have your left brain agree that experiencing unseen worlds is a possibility, a possibility that even you can have access to.
Start from the premise that there is evidence -- scientific evidence even -- that energies are present that you cannot see or feel or smell. (more…)
In the mid-1990s I met a man named Nestor living in the solitude of the hilly Emmental region of Switzerland. Nestor has a unique and provocative claim: that he focuses for years on a constellation of huge shining spheres and strings which have been formed in his field of vision. He interprets this phenomenon as a subtle structure formed by our consciousness which in turn creates our material world. Nestor, who calls himself a seer, ascribes this subjective visual perception to his long lasting efforts to develop his consciousness. He explains his vision as an extended perception of a phenomenon for which, in ophthalmology, the collective term “floaters” is applied. (more…)
The anthropologist and cult writer Carlos Castaneda (CC) has substantially contributed to the emergence of a Western New Age shamanism. From the 1960s until his death in April 1998, CC published more than ten books, all of which he declared as anthropologically relevant collections of conversations actually having taken place and experiences made with the Mexican Yaqui Indian and shaman Don Juan Matus (DJ) and his companions. Today, the authenticity of CC‘s books is strongly controversial far beyond anthropology. But a worldwide total circulation of the order of a million copies testifies that CC‘s books, critical of society and reason, have been balsam for a whole generation which did not conceal its rejection of bourgeois politics and ideology. The same books were and are still widely received by the generation to follow whose spiritual way to the inside is hardly inspired by religious institutions. They gratefully adopted the fascinating description of a “seperate reality”, based on experiences of altered consciousness states, supported by the authenticity of Native Indian shamanism, and narrated in a lively dialogic writing style. (more…)
A mantra is a combination of psychically potent sound syllables that are capable of influencing the human system. It works on different levels of being (from gross to the subtlest).
Mantras as it is defined, is that tool which liberates the mind from bondage, here bondage means ‘the state of identification of the gross mind’. Mind is always identified with the world of idea name, form and objects. At the energetic level the identification leads to dissipation of energy (vikshepa), mind is tied down to the plane of gross sensorial world creating the spectrum of experiences colored by the polar opposites of pains–pleasures, heat-cold, depression-elation etc. Here in these conditions mantras helps to tune the vibrations of mind to the subtler frequencies of mantras and hence helps to internalize it. (more…)