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kkawohl
2003-Nov-04, 10:38 PM
Can our subconscious, our spirit, interact with a spiritual reality through meditation?

Please consider my experiences.(I would love to see some artist's rendering thereof)

IMHO, I have personally experienced my spirit leaving my body and being united with the "ultimate supreme spirit" (God?). In 1956, when I was fifteen years old, I had pneumonia and thought I was dying. My father took me to a doctor who gave me a penicillin injection and recommended immediate hospitalization. We had no medical insurance or money, so my father took me home to recuperate. I remember the drive home vividly. Every breath was painful and my chest felt as though a great weight was upon it. I watched cars and trucks drive by, and wondered how people could make long term plans when life was so unpredictable.

Several nights later, it felt as if my spirit left my body and it experienced being in a place with a gathering of souls or spirits. I sensed great peace, tranquility and ecstasy -- a rapture that was beyond a person's imagination. I felt as if I was a part of ALL, a part of God. I was mentally communicating and in sync with everyone, including not only some of my deceased acquaintances and relatives, but many of the prophets of the bible, and historical people I had read about. There was no dominant force, no forceful leader. I somehow knew who everyone was. Every thought interacted with the whole community. I had no questions; it seemed as if everything was revealed and crystal clear. I saw the universe stretched out with spirits engaged in mental interaction like master craftsmen contemplating the creation of a new frontier.

When I told my father who was a preacher of the Lutheran Faith about my experience he dismissed it abruptly and told me that this "supreme spirit," this God that my spirit had witnessed, was not the God of the bible and he told me to pray for my salvation. We never talked about it afterwards.

Since that time I never really gave it much thought until the New York World Trade Center tragedy on 9-11-01. I went into deep meditation. I wanted to find an answer to why and how some misguided individuals could believe that their actions would be rewarded with their soul's eternal life with God. I then had a couple of experiences similar to the one I had at age fifteen of my spirit communicating with the "ultimate spirit." (God, Allah or whatever one desires to call him/her/it) One spiritual experience seemed to last throughout the entire night. My spirit observed the entire history and the evolution of the universe and our varying perceptions of God, as if in a fast-forward film.

The experiences I encountered after the 9-11 tragedy helped me come to these conclusions:

1. ALL religions have the same goals and all who live by the basic principles of peace will attain their goal. The problems arise when religious fanaticism arises. A fanatic passion to please God has been demonstrated throughout the Ages. We have seen vast destruction and useless killings by religious zealots that have followed us into the present century whereby even technology is unable to quell its tide.

2. In this 21st Century, the Age of Technology, we are still plagued by religious beliefs that are a contributing cause toward terrorism, killings and wars between nations. Belief in a deity, who keeps causing catastrophes, punishes people, and created the universe out of nothingness as if by magic was brought about by hysteria and superstitions. This thought process needs to be reassessed and brought up to date. Open-minded people must use common sense to determine whether this so-called deity was incorrectly perceived, misinterpreted and misunderstood by the masses of a bygone era.

3. God is a spiritual unity, a oneness, a structured government-like "Spiritual Collective"; the "Progressive and Accumulative Spiritual Intelligence" of the universe existing in a spiritual dimension; a collective of the righteous souls who have passed into the spiritual realm; a spiritual continuity.

Some will say that my personal experience of oneness with a supreme spirit is nothing but a dream or a vivid imagination. It doesn't matter whether you accept or totally reject my story. What does matter is that we evolve to a point whereby we can encourage open-minded people to offer feedback on how our religious beliefs can be brought into the 21st century.

Let us hope that man will eventually progress intellectually and evolve to a point whereby he can socialize with totally eliminated tendencies for barbarianism and without fanaticism; This would be true enlightenment.

Namaste,
Kurt Kawohl

http://www.internet-encyclopedia.org/wiki....rch=kurt+kawohl (http://www.internet-encyclopedia.org/wiki.phtml?search=kurt+kawohl)

jimmy
2003-Nov-04, 11:45 PM
Sounds like a great experience, and whether real or imagined it seems to haven you a great perspective on the unity of all things.
Namaste'

kashi
2003-Nov-05, 01:32 AM
Welcome to the forum kkawohl.

I know others who have had simular experiences and have become better people as a result. Perhaps these experiences are figments of your imagination or perhaps there is another plane of existence. What is "real" and what is "imagined" anyway? I certainly don't have the qualifications to draw the line. It doesn't really make any difference in the sense that you have come out of your experience with some great values and an inspiring perspective on life. I agree wholeheartedly with your conclusions. Common sense is indeed the key to eliminating religious fanatacism. The only religion I've found that seems to openly encourage common sense is Tibetan Buddhism.

Maybe one day, science will be able to give some conclusive answers about this stuff. I believe that there is more to the universe than the physical plane of existence. That the physical universe exists/existed on its own independent of anything else defies basic logic in my mind.

Kashi

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-05, 01:51 AM
I agree with Jimmy.

I can't say I believe in a God... my fiancee has described me to her Catholic mother as a humanist and I guess that's true. It's not that I simply don't believe in God or in an afterlife, it's that I haven't had enough personal experience or seen enough evidence to form a conviction. I have a very open mind to many things and God is one of them.

That said, I've seen some documentaries about near-death experiences (NDE) whereby those involved have described situations and feelings very similar to those you've experienced, kkawohl.

The experts have dismissed them as mere chemical or electrical reponses in the brain... they've shown how those same experiences can be repeated under laboratory conditions - not like Flatliners, but by inducing those same reactions in the brain to produce feelings of euphoria and memories of lost loved ones.

They'll tell you it's just a form of natural painkiller.

They might well be right... BUT...

...the one thing that stands out, regardless of whether these experiences are real or not, is how those experiences have changed that person's life for the better. Every one of those people came out of those experiences better off, emotionally and spiritually, it changed their lives - sometimes in quite astonishing ways.

I've had dreams that have been similar to kkawohl's, but not, I suspect, to quite the same degree. I've had dreams where I've stood on the surface of Triton and seen the ice volcanoes erupting as Neptune rises over the horizon. I've seen a star burst into life and push it's cocoon of gas and dust away. That dream I had on the night of January 1st, 2000. Symbolic, to say the least.

These experiences affect people in different ways but I have to say I envy you, kkawohl, because whether it was real or not, it was clearly something very magical and they've clearly had a positive effect on you - as my own experiences have with me.

I don't care if they're real or not - I only care for how they make me feel.

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-05, 01:52 AM
BTW Kashi - you posted your comments just as I was typing my rather long-winded reply LOL You've raised some of the same points... great minds, eh? :D

kkawohl
2003-Nov-05, 03:27 PM
I thank you for your kind and thoughtful replies.

I believe that throughout several millennia evidence has been presented that something spiritual has at times interacted with our spirit; (not physically) this interaction was interpreted accordingly and written in the Torah, Bible, Qur'an, etc., but this interaction has often been misinterpreted as the messengers having physically heard, spoken to or having seen God.

IMHO, a spiritual existence exists in a spiritual realm and guides the development of the universe like a Master Planner but has never physically interfered or meddled with the development of earth or the universe.

I believe that the Ultimate Truth is indecipherable by the human mind and can only be divulged to the spirit which also often misinterprets its meaning, hence we have various religions and beliefs.

Kurt

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-06, 04:08 AM
I have no idea who first came up with this analogy, but there's no way I can claim it as my own...

Someone once explained why different religions see God in different ways in the following manner:

Imagine you're in a museum or an art gallery and there's an object in a room that no one is allowed to enter. You can look into the room through a window but you can't see the whole object, you can only see a small portion of it. Depending on which window you're looking through, you'll be able to ascertain certain characteristics about the object but other characteristics you'll have to surmise given what you already know.

In that way, other people looking through other windows will get different views - some of what they see will be the same as you and some of their conclusions will be the same, but also some of their views and conclusions will differ radically from yours.

This is how we see God... we can't envision God in His / Her / It's entirety, we can only see a few aspects and the rest we have to surmise.

Now imagine the only people allowed to look through those windows are the so-called "experts" - and imagine if every one of them believed their conclusions were correct and every one else's was wrong. Alas, this is religion...

jimmy
2003-Nov-06, 05:58 AM
Has anyone herad of the Hermeneutical Circle, in which we're all looking in to something, but from different perspectives? Pretty cool!!!

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-07, 02:24 AM
Jimmy, I think that's probably the analogy I was using but I couldn't remember the specifics so I sort of made my own version up LOL :D

jimmy
2003-Nov-07, 03:10 PM
Originally posted by DippyHippy@Nov 7 2003, 02:24 AM
Jimmy, I think that's probably the analogy I was using but I couldn't remember the specifics so I sort of made my own version up LOL :D
Hey D/H,
Maybe in this forum we could rename it the "Hippy Circle", since you came up with everything but the name. Besides, Hermeneutical is really hard to spell.LOL :lol:

starrman
2003-Nov-08, 10:50 AM
This is one of several threads in the Universe Today fora that deal with "spiritual" or theological matters. While I am a rather determined skeptic in these realms, it nonetheless fascinates me that so many people are interested in somehow establishing the "reality" of their individual experiences. I place the term reality in quotes only because its use in these discussions seems tantamount to the concept of scientific proof. And that is the point at which I encounter difficulties.

Science, by its very nature, is incapable of establishing any sort of confirmation of spiritual experience. In order to ask a meaningful scientific question, one must first formulate a testable and falsifiable hypothesis. I would defy anyone to outline the characteristics of a testable hypothesis for personal and idiosyncratic internal spiritual experience. How would one quantify the experience of the divine? How would one reproduce the experience so that it could be subjected to testing? And how would one formulate an experiment that could falsify the experience? All of these things would be needed in order to pose a question in scientific terms, and yet no spiritual experience of which I am familiar is susceptible to any of those formulations.

The practice of science is a very powerful method for discovering the nature of the world around us, but it can only examine those things which are tangible and testable. Science has nothing to say regarding beauty. It has no method for gauging friendship. It reduces love to an interaction of pheromones. And that is the inherent nature of science and scientific philosophy. It is an exercise in reductionism, a powerful and puissant means of learning about things, but a poor approach to experience in human terms. Reductionism can lead us to know the function of the most delicate parts of a clockwork, but it has little to say about the sense of anticipation that accompanies a reading of that clock when it ticks off the hours until the expected arrival of a loved one.

Powerful, personal, transformative spiritual experiences are a reality. No reasonable person would deny that they occur, or that they have profound influences in the lives of individuals, communities, nations. History teaches us that those experiences have resonances that can affect all of us, believers or not, for millenia. The aftermath of those revelatory events have changed the course of human development in ways both benevolent and destructive, have inspired acts of the utmost sublimnity and of the utmost cruelty. The perpetrators of the terror that occured on September 11, 2001, believed (if what I have read is reliable) that they would be rewarded for their actions in some ineffable afterlife. And many of the victims of those horrific acts no doubt held similar beliefs in the rewards of a benevolent diety that they would experience after death. Personally, I do not hold such beliefs, but I am not in a position to deny the claims made by those who do. I have no means for approaching the question. I would only hope that the believers of the world would approach one another, and those of us who have yet to make that leap of faith, in a spirit of tolerance and understanding and not one of moral certitude and judgementalism.

Clear skies.

jimmy
2003-Nov-08, 04:00 PM
Yeah, Starman, well said. Very well said. Thank You.

Fraser
2003-Nov-08, 05:18 PM
I've closed this thread as part of the new forum Rules. Take a look at them here:

http://www.universetoday.com/forum/index.p...?showtopic=1134 (http://www.universetoday.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=1134)