From the book ‘Operation Earth’ by Brinsley le Poer Trench 1974 states: “There is tremendous research still to be done and much more corroborating evidence is needed but what has been achieved points to the fact that there are invisible universes interpenetrating our own as the mystics have pointed out for thousands of years”.
In Plato’s well-known allegory of the cave he says to imagine people chained inside a dark, underground cave. A fire burns at the entrance, and in its glittering light, shadows of the outside world are projected onto the walls of the cave. The prisoners, powerless by their chains can see nothing but these shadows of reality. One day, one of the captives is freed and pulled out of the cave. At first, he is blinded by the sunlight, but as his vision clears, he is astounded to realize that this is the magnificent real world, that the shadows on the wall were mere illusions. The man rushes back to inform the others of his amazing discovery –but they laugh at his crazy tales of the real ‘world’ and still stay persistently tied to their chains.
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This is so with many on the earth they live within the darkness of the cave of ignorance their minds are closed to the reality of the brighter lighter dimensions of the spirit world. People ridicule those who believe that the reality of life is in the spirit world, but they do not take the time or effort themselves to find out if it is a reality. So they stay chained to the illusion of earth and its material ideals.
Many religions speak of worlds beyond ours, as we know Jesus told us that: “In my Father’s House there are many Mansions”. He was referring to the spirit dimensions that people pass in to when going home to the spirit world. Shinto speaks of the ‘seven heavens’. The Hindu and Krishna faiths also speak of these other dimensions. Past research in India claims have been made by yoga masters who can slip in and out of these other higher worlds. It has been accepted in China for thousands of years that parallel worlds exist in the universe but cannot be seen because of their higher vibrating energies
The ancient Tao masters could enter these higher dimensions for they had knowledge how the energy worked within certain sets of circumstances. They also knew that the universe is energy vibrating on a spiritual expression and is the creative force behind all life. Scientists and others know that energy can neither be created nor destroyed it only changes in its form and expression.
On rare occasions under certain circumstances a glimpse into the higher world has been witnessed, by what is known as ‘near death experience’. (NDE), where people have described that world as a glorious heaven. For over two decades much medical research has been conducted, causing controversy over whether the experiences are actual or whether caused by a dying brain. Some claim they are major psychoses and brain malfunctions such as temporal lobe epilepsy as the cause of the hallucinations. After all they say the subjects are only near death so some spark of consciousness must remain or else permanent brain damage would occur.
One story has been told in 1979 of Paula who was head of the English department at a high school in the north of England. She had been living with her husband in Ibiza. One day she fell down some marble steps suffering a hairline fracture of the skull. She was rushed to hospital where double concussion was suspected. Though this was not a near death experience what she went through was a similar happening as those who do.
Paula found great difficulty in gathering her thoughts because of very bad headaches. At times she was awake then suddenly she would sink into unconsciousness. Paula stayed in hospital that night but the next day she discharged herself going against the advice of the doctors who wanted her to stay. To her horror when she had returned to her villa with her husband and son being out and no-one else was there, the headaches suddenly became excruciating. Paula was convinced that something terrible was about to happen. She explained by saying:
“I felt a compulsion to go into the bathroom and look into the mirror. I was shocked. My face was drawn and I didn’t recognize it. I felt I was being forced to look into my eyes to find some answers about myself. With the belief that I was approaching death came the fear of not continuing afterwards.”
“I heard a female voice” said Paula. “The voice was very close to my right ear, yet inside my head too. It was very calming, as it said, “Have no fear. Lie down and come to me very slowly and gently”, at that moment all fear lifted from me, and I wanted to follow the voice. A ‘going home’ feeling enveloped me”
Paula found herself traveling fast through a Kaleidoscope of misty colour. The presence of the woman was still with her. “She knew everything about me, and talked of people whom I’d loved” said Paula.
“As their names were mentioned I re-experienced the emotions that had aroused in me. The voice went through a series of people from childhood friends to my mother. I remember feeling a real depth of love for her”.
Finally Paula was taken up before a magnificent white light, which drew her into it, radiating a tremendous feeling. At the same time she was aware of a chorus of voices. It was as if they were saying that we, on earth are really dead, and only in spirit are we alive. Suddenly, a male voice could be heard coming from the light. It told her not to worry, as everything would be all right. Then instantly she was back in her body and fully conscious. “I felt so exalted” said Paula. “There was a God there was continuation – I had actually seen something. I fell down in absolute amazement”.
“My mother was having a lie-in that Sunday morning. Sometime between 11.15 and 11.30 she saw me enter her bedroom through one of the walls and stand at the foot of her bed. She looked in amazement, and I stood there and smiled at her, then walked back out again. At that time she didn’t even know I’d had an accident”. Paula has no awareness of entering her mother’s room. For sometime after her experience, she felt a finely tuned sensitivity to life around her. On walks in the country she saw aspects of nature normally hidden from sight. She saw things on the microscopic level, with increased colour intensity. It was as if she could actually see plants and flowers growing before her eyes.
Paula was still aware of the presence of the women beside her. She asked many questions to the woman. Paula wondered if the presence was simply an aspect of her own consciousness, but the answers were so detailed, and so unlike ‘her’ that Paula became convinced she was dealing with a real objective entity. She asked it why she had, had the experience, and why she had been brought back? She was told there was an army of light forming in the heavens to fight the forces of darkness. She was to be a part of this army, but here on the physical plane. The world was nearing destruction, and the army was to intervene, she was to play some part in that”.
Today, when she talks about it, her frustration turns to tears as she struggles with the inadequacies of language to describe her feelings. “It is impossible to put into words. Words cannot describe what happened to me. I was not the same person when I came back. It is as if I entered another existence, as if I had been reincarnated. After that you cannot live life as you did before”.
Some researchers such as Ronald K. Siegel believe that NDEs are not the product of drugs and in the 1970s, conducted some tests. He carried them out on volunteers and for the most part failed to copy the various stages of NDEs. Eventually he abandoned the idea that the phenomenon was hallucinatory produced by chemical and electrical changes to the brain and pursued other realistic theories.
N.D.E.s have been investigated not only in this country but also in theNetherlands headed by Dr Fenwick and Dr Pim van Lommel, senior cardiologist at the Rynstate Hospital in Arnhem. An intense program of NDE students has been carried out at ten hospitals. N.D.E.s in the past had never really been investigated though many accounts of them taking place were given by patients. These tests were now more scientific in their operation and instead of long spells of time passing before some people speak of their experiences these tests were carried out soon after the event had taken place. The people chosen to undergo these experiments were cardiac patients. The reasons being firstly because very few drugs are used on such people, and secondly their clinical death can be accurately timed and monitored by electrocardiographs. There were 345 patients involved in the tests, but only 35 had the full experience of a N.D.E. They all felt a calmness and peace, watching revival attempts from above entering a tunnel, meeting a being of light, seeing dead relatives and friends and grudgingly agreeing to return. The tests showed that the length of time a patient spent dead did not correspond with the apparent passage of time during the NDE- a different timescale seemed to operate. One year after the first experiments the rest of the patients came forward to admit they had also had similar experiences. They had denied the fact in the first instance for their own personal reasons.
The varying different spiritual spheres are concentric circles around our world like those of the planet Saturn and they stretch far out into the universe. These planes are of different density, and vibration. As the Astral plane is the first sphere next to earth and even penetrates it then it is not independent of our world. It rotates with our planet and the vibrations of that higher etheric world sometimes interpenetrates and influences our world. There is no void or space between them, but are connected by vibrations.
As mentioned the Astral plane is the next phase of existence after death on the earth plane. It is a replica of earth, but an etheric and not material creation. Though it is similar to earth, it has higher expressive abilities with it being etheric, with such beauty of colours and levels of fruition in all aspects of nature than cannot be seen on earth.
There is confirmation of this in the Bible. The Astral plane is what St John saw in his vision. In Revelations xxi, 1 ST. John says: “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away”.
That statement by ST John of the vision he saw has been interpreted, as being a heaven beyond this world, where the earth no longer exists as a habitable sphere. What he had seen was the Astral plane which portrayed a resemblance to the earth but was etheric in its creation, and with it being more beautiful than the earth he thought it to be a new earth a new heaven.
When entering the Astral plane and the human form is left in the grave the individual then has an etheric body. Again for those who believe in God and the spirit there is confirmation in the bible. In 1 Corinthians: chapter 15: verse 44: it says:
“It is sown a natural body: it is raised a spiritual body”.
“There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body”. The natural body is of flesh and blood while the spirit body is of pure spirit energy.
In 1 Corinthians: chapter 15: verse 50: it tells us: “Now this I say brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God: neither doth corruption inherit corruption”.
Also in 1 Corinthians chapter 15: verse 40: it says: “There are also celestial bodies, and bodies’ terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another”.
On its earthly journey to gain experiences of life the material body is attached to the spirit identity that gives it life, after death the body of flesh and blood is no more, but lies decaying in the grave. The spirit when being encased by the material form imposed severe limitations to its true identity. It could not express its full potential in the prison of the heavy flesh. An individual newly freed into the world of spirit still carries the characteristics that they had on earth. They are no different from what they were from the point of view of character and demeanor. They have had a variety of experiences while on earth but they still do not have the meaning to those experiences and to prophet by them spiritually. These they will soon learn of in the Astral plane when the screening of their life is shown to them and the spiritual lessons they had learnt on earth. Everything that took place in their earthly life will now make sense to them.
After a very short time the earthly clothes are discarded. The individual becomes dressed in robes not physical clothes but an etheric equivalent. An etheric body wearing robes has a unusual quality of radiation they are not worn next to the etheric skin they form part of the body, unlike earthy clothes there are as it were an outer but essential covering. The radiations are conditioned by the state of advancement of the individual. The robes are not a drab white as some may believe as shown in some religious books or paintings but express varying colours showing the level of spiritual progression each individual has so far reached. They can only be enhanced as the individual gains wisdom and seeks to serve others not wanting any reward.
When passing to the spirit after death on this world the individual will be in an environment carefully arranged and selected in the Astral plane to suit their condition and to make their welcome as little startling and disturbing as possible. The new spirit will be met by their loved ones being both family and friends. Here a great joy is experienced by the newcomer. They were told there was no life after death, but yet they find themselves very much alive in the company of people that meant so much to them while on earth.
They will also be able to meet their guides those good and wise beings whose task was to help and to inspire the individual to keep to the straight and narrow while on earth. It was in God’s plan that everyone should have help from a spiritual guide to guide them through particular material lessons that the individual said they would carry out while on earth. They do not control us they do not have that power, nor will they be at our beck and call to do more work for us in our difficult times on earth. They can give advice and help in certain circumstances but it is up to the individual to call upon the God of the spirit which is within us for strength and to gain wisdom. The guide is more advanced than individual on earth and watches over the welfare of the evolving spirit. It is an aspect of brotherhood to aid someone a little further down the ladder of spiritual progress. Guides are often shy of revealing their identity to their charges during the incarnation owing to the desirability of the incarnate spirit facing up to its own experiences and problems. The guide may not shoulder the burdens of his charge but through the soul mind he will cheer his friend and comrade on the path of progress and give him as much spiritual strength as he can and sometimes dose give warning to his charge of impending disaster where destiny dose not decree otherwise. But sometimes the incarnate soul is tempted and succumbs. Destiny may step in and then the guide has to stand aside and watch his beloved sow his seeds of trouble and later see him reap the harvest powerless to interfere. Yet he will be aware that the suffering undergone will in the end prove the shortest way to progress. But sometimes the departure from goodness is stubborn and then the guide’s distress is very real. Yet a guide never leaves his charge remaining constant and observant for a chance to influence the erring soul in the right direction using what opportunities he can find to check the hasty downfall. And great is his joy if he can raise his charge to a realisation of his true position and aid his recovery.
Sometimes people will pass over having experienced a very traumatic illness like cancer or have had a horrific accident or being killed unnaturally say being murdered, or through natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes. Though the spirit body itself dose not experience illness or disease the after affects of such traumatic incidents will have seriously weakened the energies of the spirit. It will feel exhausted and depleted of motivation. These people are then taken to the hall of rest looked after by spiritual healers to rejuvenate their spiritual energies so then they can happily be a part of the glories of the Astral plane. In addition, if any one suffered bodily defects on earth such as being blind or loosing any limb these again function perfectly in the spirit form, for the spirit is indestructible.
The Astral plane is not always a permanent abode for the people who pass there. It is a sorting out place where all pass to, both the good and the bad. Even Jesus had to enter this sphere with the thief upon the cross, when he said to him: “Tonight thou shalt be with me in paradise”. Jesus had to first enter the Astral plane for his work on earth was not yet done. He spent forty days journeying from the Astral plane to the earth, to show his disciples and Mary in the garden of Gethsemane that he had risen from the dead. After his brief time of adjustment he quickly moved upward to his own sphere.
Each person when passing over is allowed a time of adjustment in understanding the reality of the spirit world. There is of course a time of judgment for each individual as to the kind of life they had led on earth. This time of judgment is not of the orthodox teachings for Jesus dose not judge anyone, nor is there hell fire and damnation on the other side, ruled over by the devil. Judgment time is what Jesus spoke of when he told his disciples “by the measure you give the same measure you will receive”.
When on earth many people carry out unfair practices upon another causing among other things hurt and pain, and they seem to get away with it without them feeling any kind of remorse. Sometimes retribution comes to the wrong doer while on earth and they receive punishment for their un-spiritual ways, but others will find out that their day of reckoning will come on judgment day in the spirit world.
This is confirmed in the bible. In Ecclesiastes: chapter eight: verse: 11: it says: “Because a sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil”.
In the rest of this chapter we will look closer at this time of judgement. We will also read more of what happens to people in the Astral plane. In addition for those of a scientific mind it gives explanations of how the spiritual spheres are formed and how they function.
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