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Reality of Mind

Yesterday I was browsing the book Science and Ultimate Reality: Quantum Theory, Cosmology and Complexity, edited by John Barrow, Paul Davies, and Charles Harper Jr, and came across this interesting passage in the article “Inflation, quantum cosmology, and the anthropic principle” by Andrei Linde (yes, the usual light Tuesday reading for me). There are some really nice insights in there, so it deserves a careful reading – I’ve highlighted a few sections to point them out explicitly:

[W]e cannot rule out the possibility that carefully avoiding the concept of consciousness in quantum cosmology may lead to an artificial narrowing of our outlook.

Let us remember an example from the history of science that may be rather instructive in this respect. Prior to the invention of the general theory of relativity, space, time, and matter seemed to be three fundamentally different entities…. The general theory of relativity brought with it a decisive change in this point of view. Spacetime and matter were found to be interdependent, and there was no longer any question which one of the two is more fundamental…

Now let us turn to consciousness. The standard assumption is that consciousness, just like spacetime before the invention of general relativity, plays a secondary, subservient role, being just a function of matter and a tool for the description of the truly existing material world. But let us remember that our knowledge of the world begins not with matter but with perceptions. I know for sure that my pain exists, my “green” exists, and my “sweet” exists. I do not need any proof of their existence, because these events are a part of me; everything else is a theory. Later we find out that our perceptions obey some laws, which can be most conveniently formulated if we assume that there is some underlying reality beyond our perceptions. This model of a material world obeying laws of physics is so successful that soon we forget about our starting point and say that matter is the only reality, and perceptions are nothing but a useful tool for the description of matter. This assumption is almost as natural (and maybe as false) as our previous assumption that space is only a mathematical tool for the description of matter. We are substituting reality of our feelings by the successfully working theory of an independently existing material world. And the theory is so successful that we almost never think about its possible limitations.

Is it possible that consciousness, like spacetime, has its own intrinsic degrees of freedom, and that neglecting these will lead to a description of the universe that is fundamentally incomplete? …Is it possible to…investigate a possibility that consciousness may exist by itself, even in the absence of matter, just like gravitational waves, excitations of space, may exist in the absence of protons and electrons?

Could it be that consciousness is an equally important part of the consistent picture of our world, despite the fact that so far one could safely ignore it in the description of the well-studied physical processes? Will it not turn out, with the further development of science, that the study of the universe and the study of consciousness are inseparably linked, and that ultimate progress in the one will be impossible without progress in the other?

I’ve said for quite a while that modern, physicalist science has come to self-define reality by saying that reality consists of those things that we can measure and study objectively through science. And yet I have elsewhere come across similar speculation and suggestions about consciousness from very respected physicists. Paul Davies maintains that mind and culture “will turn out to be of fundamental significance in the grand story of the cosmos”:

Somehow, the universe has engineered not only its own self-awareness, but its own self-comprehension. It is hard to see this astonishing property of (at least some) living organisms as an accidental and incidental by-product of physics, a lucky fluke of biological evolution. Rather, the fact that mind is linked into the deep workings of the cosmos in this manner suggests that there is something truly fundamental and literally cosmic in the emergence of sentience

Freeman Dyson also says that “the tendency of mind to infiltrate and control matter is a law of nature.”

Sadly, just as Linde’s article was getting juicy, this is what followed:

Instead of discussing these issues here any further, we will return to a more solid ground…”

Aww, where’s the fun in standing on solid ground!

  1. This is solid ground
    What Andrei Linde is describing is already a widely discussed idea in Philosophy – specifically the Philosophy of Mind – called Panpsychism. David Chalmers is probably the most vocal, and well known, defender of the idea, however, much of the resistance to a Panpsychist view is that most of the Philosophers of Mind who support the idea have a tendency to couch it in Dualistic terms and conceptualizations.
    The problem with asserting that consciousness is a fundamental universal property comes in when people interpret that as an assertion that consciousness exists a priori to physical matter like, say, a brain. The dominant view is, of course, that consciousness is an epiphenomenon of brain physiology.
    However, a valid philosophical argument in favor of panpsychism could be made that equates consciousness not with the fundamental aspects of physical universe, but rather with universal forces themselves.
    Somewhere along that line of speculation it would also help us to do away with the (largely) Western idealized concept of the individual soul as a basis for consciousness. Consciousness, in this model, is not an individuated thing that is parceled out equally to organisms and who then retain their Self-hood for eternity or what-have-you. Consciousness is a fundamental universal force that manifests itself when the physical structure of the universe is sufficiently arranged – exactly like Electro-Magnetism, Gravity, the Weak Force, and the Strong Force.

    The question presented to a Philosopher who would posit this idea, then, is what is the Self? Well, the answer to how the Self emerges from Consciousness is probably found in the mechanism of memory and in the limits of our physical body. In other words, Consciousness is not a Self, the Self is conscious. In much the same way that Gravity is not a planet, but a planet has a gravitational field. It’s sort of a murky metaphor, I know, perhaps I will come back to the point when I have more time.

    In any event, my intent was only to contribute that the idea Andrei Linde is putting forth is not really that strange, and in fact, is well represented in academic circles.

  2. Excellent post Greg – thanks.
    Excellent post Greg – thanks. This is why I love the Daily Grail – new leads for further reading I find here – especially on my favorite topics.

    Too bad human nature resists new ideas in its practice of science, causing the pace of discovery and acceptance to be grudgingly slow. This is one direction I believe new truths will be discovered, that are also old truths in many ways.

  3. yes panpsychism!
    Hey, I was just reading about pansychism for the first time yesterday! A meaningless coincidence I’m sure, as my individual experience is of no statistical consequence and therefore has no value.

    But thank you for the post! I’m going scour the library for this one.

    I’m glad to see John A. Wheeler acknowledged for his influence. It seems he is sometimes positioned at the edge of the scientific mainstream, but perhaps that’s the best place to be.

    1. I did
      [quote=Georgehants]Must just say if one reads Seth Speaks etc. (Jane Roberts) written in the 1970,s, you may feel the answers have been in front of our faces for a long time.[/quote]

      I did, and the more I watch the evidence build and the theories develop, the more I need to remind myself that I read those books all those years ago.


    2. But Does Seth Get Sufficient Respect?
      Seth is no better than Rodney Dangerfield, in some respects, ’cause he don’t get no respect, except from those aging boomers who were attracted to his material, read it, and became enthusiasts.

      It’s also true that neither Seth nor Jane were physicists or even engineers, let alone formal philosophers — sure Jane wrote science fiction, but in truth she was a housewife from Elmira, NY (o.k. — an offbeat housewife) while Seth called himself an “energy personality essence no longer focused in physical life” — who but a Seth freak would imagine Seth in such company as a luminary such as Paul Davies?

      There is Bridging Science and Spirit (Common Elements in David Bohm’s Physics, The Perennial Philosophy, and Seth) by Norman Friedman, but how many folks have read that?

      Barrow, Davies, and Harper speculate. Chalmers (it’s possible to interact with him on the Journal of Consciousness Studies Yahoo Group, at least it was, several years ago) does what most philosophers do.

      I seriously doubt any of them would take Seth seriously (I could be wrong) but then what would you expect?

      Seth’s material isn’t simply speculation, nor is it truly “received wisdom” as Seth strongly encourages his readers to investigate the nature of self, reality, and consciousness for themselves, directly; further, he provides exercises for doing just that (but try getting anyone unfamiliar with the material to try doing one…).

      So few take Seth seriously outside a gradually dwindling number of aging readers. They may have numbered in the millions at one time, but I doubt this is true at the moment. This is a shame, because he really has something to say. (I briefly relate how I came across Seth Speaks at

      “You create your own reality” became a New Age slogan post-Seth, even though Seth originated the phrase and elaborated quite thoroughly — others repeated it, frequently without attribution and without Seth’s depth of explanation. As I said, he gets no respect.

      Can his non-technical explanations including “emanations of the nervous system” and “unique individual space continua” — with much else — ever be successfully connected to & reconciled with the ever changing theories of physics, complete with arcane mathematics?

      Does it matter?

      I believe so, but then this only applies to certain probable realities and related probable futures.

      Bill I.

      1. Channelled

        There is Bridging Science and Spirit (Common Elements in David Bohm’s Physics, The Perennial Philosophy, and Seth) by Norman Friedman, but how many folks have read that?

        Bill I.[/quote]

        Yes, I have that book too.

        The Seth material has some fans among “respected” thinkers, for sure. But I have to confess that I often hesitate to admit to the fact that such channelled material has had such a huge influence upon my own worldview (although, in another sense, it merely confirmed it). I’m not even sure whether I believe that Seth was indeed a discarnate spirit or a secondary personality created by Jan Roberts in order to deliver the material. Still, does that really matter? The material speaks for itself and, despite a few seeming inconsistencies, it really does hold up well when compared to many of the more enlightened and open minded thinkers of today (Paul Davies included).

        While it may not matter who or what Seth was, the source of the material is worthy of some consideration. In the 30 years since I read the first Seth book, I have widened my scope considerably – especially since the internet provides such instant access to information. I have found similar wisdom in shamanic lore, in ancient wisdom schools, in alchemy and hermetic practices, in parts of the bible and other major religious texts as well as in frontier science such as quantum physics and cosmology. That list is all you need to answer why I have been a long time reader of the Daily Grail.

        So, to get back to the point: the source of the material seems to be some universal reservoir of knowledge and there does seem to be any number of ways to access that knowledge. Channelling might be just one of those methods. And to speculate that Seth was not a long dead spiritual guide does not in any way deny the existence of spiritual entities. The message that the spiritual world is the ultimate reality and that the material world is the illusion is often made in this material, whatever the means of delivery.

        Inevitably, all this reading can only achieve so much, however. It can’t bring certainty. Only experience can do that and we can either wait for death itself for confirmation, or find a reliable method of achieving enlightenment during this life. I’m afraid that’s where I have failed to achieve what I hoped for – whether by meditation or hypnosis or other means – I have not experienced the kind of altered state that would open the doors of perception for me. Not yet.



          I have lately been rereading the above book which very, very convincingly makes the case for the reality of reincarnation. The psychologist who was startled to accidentally bump into this via one extraordinary patient was a solid thinker and professionally trained psychiatric observer who was not given to new age mentation. Once you cross this line your ideas about where mind begins and ends is going to change quite a bit.
          The information field is seen not to be supraphysical so much as it is seen to be intimately bound up with the physical. Biological dissolution which we refer to as “death” is clearly not the death of the information field. There have been thousands if not millions of books on the subject of reincarnation, and the vast majority of them just regurgitate failry tired ideas, so this book is refreshing. Though the “Seth Material” is also very fresh in its thinking there is still the reservation we all have about channeled information. Seth though did ocassionally “put on shows’ of clairvoyance and other paranormal feats that were very convincing too, but it is alway nice to bump into a previously staid medical professional who finds his worldview upended and who parctices lab grade observation too.

        2. Accelerating Consciousness Expansion via the Internet

          Dave writes: “Inevitably, all this reading can only achieve so much, however. It can’t bring certainty. Only experience can do that and we can either wait for death itself for confirmation, or find a reliable method of achieving enlightenment during this life. I’m afraid that’s where I have failed to achieve what I hoped for – whether by meditation or hypnosis or other means – I have not experienced the kind of altered state that would open the doors of perception for me. Not yet.”

          Dave, did you ever avail yourself of the early on-line Seth community? The heyday passed as the first Internet mailing list began to splinter by the late 90s (in a spectacular flame war) even as the more traditional (until then paper based) “official” Seth conference organization set up a Yahoo Group that was, for a time, fairly large.

          There was something about the combination of early adopter Internet usage & the Seth material that generated quite the acceleration of — call it Seth-inspired consciousness alteration — but this seemed to dissipate as the Internet went mainstream.

          I stumbled onto this in ’95 or so and was involved, following the splintering into those smaller resulting groups that focused on the exercises and how they could be adapted to on-line realities (i.e. the adaptation of exercises designed for solitary pre-Internet readers to on-line groups).

          This was very powerful for many who were involved (including myself) and we made great headway, but eventually the intensity died down.

          Although the group intensity is gone, the cohesion of those early Internet communities departed, I haven’t forgotten the experience.

          Among other activities, we got into experimentation with trance states and related communication bigtime, in a frequently raucous kind of way, but we created and shared any number of profound experiences. This was so much more fun than simply being a solitary reader of the material — for a time, we combined informal get-togethers and “unconferences” with our on-line activities.

          With so many Seth readers in constant communication, finer points of the material were argued over incessantly until eventually most became quite tired of this, while one major split that in time generated separate groups was between those who preferred to slavishly quote Seth and those who preferred to emulate Jane, explore mediumship, and focus on a doing of the exercises and the above on-line group sessions inspired by those exercises.

          Like you, I’ve read quite a bit (I did so before encountering the Seth material, did so afterwards, and continue to do so).

          You can certainly connect the Seth material with “the perennial philosophy” and find all kinds of connections; even Seth admitted that his teachings were, basically, reformulations of already ancient ideas and practices.

          Unlike you, I have experienced altered states, before, after, and during all of the above, but they were greatly intensified by the in-person and on-line interaction with other Seth readers.

          (“Seek and ye will find” can be translated into “You get what you concentrate on.”)

          Is it really certainty or “enlightenment” we are after?

          Consciousness fluctuates all day, every day — a very expansive condition, in my experience, isn’t compatible with earning a living, which tends to require a narrowed, egoic focusing.

          If Seth’s exercises (and those like them from other sources), meditation — alone and with others, experimentation with trance states and writing, and so on, do generate what you call an “altered state” there is no guarantee this will continue (plus you could experience difficulties if it did, like getting terminated from your job, probably not a positive creation).

          Even so, there’s no reason to forget these while it’s also possible to periodically return by focusing on them.

          You can call doing so a seeking of enlightenment but that word carries an awful lot of baggage — tons of useless tradition and belief. Why not just settle for a seeking of expansive experience or something similar? Why engulf self with all the crap that goes with “enlightenment?”

          I have acquired some certainty but have to perpetually revisit the insights gained, owing to the above fluctuations in consciousness — what is real and powerful at one moment can easily shrink into a pale shadow, a distant memory with the (illusory) passage of time. Still, I am convinced — as a result of these experiences — that I am an aspect of a larger being, itself an aspect of larger and larger concatenations of consciousness, right up to the largest singular “region of self.” One need not be “enlightened” to reach such conclusions. This is a “live connection,” too, even if I quite frequently forget this.

          (Colin Wilson once wrote considerably about this fluctuation, particularly when he wrote about Gurdjieff, who was very tuned into it — consider the title of “G’s” book Life is Only Real Then, When “I Am”.)

          In summary, I am hopeful that before my life is over I will manage to co-create some new group, knowing the advantages and disadvantages, the possibilities and the downsides, of group activity, having experienced it. It can be great fun to band together and explore the “unknown” reality together like the Argonauts or those who sailed with Ulysses, even if all such group adventures inevitably end, sometimes with great emotion. The possibilities include a powerful — if temporary — acceleration in changes in consciousness.

          If this doesn’t happen before then, well, I still have my solitary pursuits, while future adventures surely await, whether in the afterlife or some new life experience.

          You can get hung up on who or what Seth was or is, btw, as Jane once did, frought with fear as she sometimes was. The artificial distinctions of psychology — conscious mind, subconscious mind, unconscious mind, etc. — have some validity, but Seth’s own distinctions (and he did note that they were artificial, if useful) are more useful, in my opinion (outer self or ego, inner self or ego, entity, ATI, etc., etc.).

          Once past the usual egoic consciousness it becomes quite plain that all & everything — and everybody — is thoroughly “connected” and so these distinctions become somewhat secondary.

          I strongly believe in the reality of my own “oversoul” — a larger being that I am part of and connected to but distinct from. It makes sense to me that Seth is/was such a being, but note that both Jane and her husband, Rob, were aspects of an overall being that included Seth — identity becomes a bit confusing under such circumstances. They were distinct and yet they were not. We are hung up on being “separate individuals” owing to the predominance of egoic consciousness & a related identification with sensory input — that is, of the outer senses.

          We are used to treating our skins as delineating boundaries but this changes when minimizing outward sensory input and focusing more on what Seth called the “inner senses.”

          Meanwhile, it’s very interesting how the external “connectivity” of the Internet symbolizes this inner reality.


          1. Lazy and fearful
            Dave, did you ever avail yourself of the early on-line Seth community?


            I’m not much of a joiner, Bill. I did participate very occasionally in discussions but became weary of ego-driven point scoring and uncritical fanboys (and girls). That is one of the reasons I hang around TDG – much more civilised than most discussion groups.

            Is it really certainty or “enlightenment” we are after? [/quote]

            I may not be a joiner but I am a seeker. Mentioning “enlightenment” was me being lazy in my choice of words, but I do look for reassurance. The fact is that I am afraid of death. That is one of my driving factors. I can appreciate – intellectually – that it is my own ego that is afraid of non-existence. And I can appreciate – again intellectually – that there is much good evidence in favour of an afterlife. But I guess that I’d like the kind of certainty that those who have experienced an NDE seem to have. I know this all lays me open to the charge of believing out of a need for comfort but, as is often said: just because you want something to be true doesn’t mean it is false.


      2. Seth’s follow-up…
        [quote=RealityTest]Seth is no better than Rodney Dangerfield, in some respects, ’cause he don’t get no respect, except from those aging boomers who were attracted to his material, read it, and became enthusiasts.[/quote]

        I saw this comment and just wanted to throw out that I am one of the exceptions because I was born in the “XY cusp” (caught between the end of Generation X and the start of Generation Y), and I am a big fan of Seth. I stumbled on Jane Robert’s books in the course of my own journey. (I think, perhaps, her books were “recommended” to me on based on other things I was purchasing at the time.)

        That said, if I met another seeker who asked me for recommendations of influential, life-changing, mind-altering pieces of work, I would likely point them in the direction of Mary Ennis’s channeled work – which is only available online – before I’d recommend Seth. Elias, the “entity” Mary Ennis channels, describes himself as a follow-up or continuation of the Seth material. This is bold proclamation given the quality of the Seth material. However, this “entity” delivers the goods – and I find Elias to be more current, a bit more accessible and less esoteric than Seth.

        The downside with Mary Ennis’s material is that it’s not neatly packaged in books. It’s a lot to wade through online. And reading transcripts can be confusing. But there are certain clarifications in the material that I found useful, particularly on the subject of how we create our own realities.

        1. New World View, Elias, etc.
          I’ve met Mary Ennis and Paul Helfrich and at one time corresponded closely with a lady who transcribed Elias’ remarks. I’ve interacted with Paul on and off for many years in a number of Internet locations.

          Connections are rife between enthusiasts of Seth and later voice channelled entities but politics arise whenever any people get together and the above groups of enthusiasts were (and are) not exceptional in this way in the slightest. The inter-relationships and rivalries — and differing beliefs and motivations — have at times been exceedingly complex.

          None of this will interest anyone and I often found it aggravating. (Group dynamics and how and why we get involved in groups and their intra- and inter-rivalries can be a fun topic, however.)

          I’ve never been very fond of Elias’ teachings but different strokes for different folks. The dynamics here are somewhat interesting, too, however; various channelled teachers and their channellers have taken different approaches at different times, as different as any individual personalities.

          You could say that I am much closer to — have much more in common with — Jane Roberts than Mary Ennis, and this has a bearing on my preferences, as you’d expect. I also much prefer the Seth material to the Abe material channelled by Esther Hicks.

          I’ve attended Abe conferences — out of curiosity — and also note the great difference between someone who buys a used Seth book at a yard sale, reads it and gains something from doing so and scads of Abe followers who pay (this was $150 years ago) to be amidst a great audience at an Abe session.

          This ripples through to the channelled material as well — there is no channeller who can be completely separated from the material he or she channels, owing to the nature of the creative process involved, which has something in common with translation.

          So I am not attracted to anything from Abe or Elias but was definitely attracted to the Seth material, despite the fact that I wouldn’t have allowed myself to even feel this attraction — my scepticism created too much of a barrier — had I not had the unusual experience of “seeing” Seth Speaks during the first time I tried to meditate.

          Again, different strokes for different folks — we are all attracted to or repelled by differing things, energies, thoughts, people, etc.

          Moving right along, it was clear from my on-line interaction with other Seth readers that there are two primary groupings of enthusiasts — those who are much more focused on the text and those, like myself, who see the exercises as integral to the text and combine taking an experiential approach with pondering the material.

          So there were those who would post quotations all day, every day, some arguing with anyone who disagreed with their interpretation (not that I didn’t argue a bit at times), much like religious scholars or certain philosophers, and there were those who would instead use the material as a springboard for their own active explorations of inner reality — doing this with others was definitely fun.

          I give both Mary and Esther (and many others) credit for being channellers in this scientific age and note their boldness in doing this publicly. Esther’s activities are highly commercial, however, of a different tone than the very private Jane Roberts, who behaved as many writers have and do.

          At the same time, both Mary and Esther have obtained followers, which is somewhat different from simply having enthusiastic readers of published books — this sets up a different dynamic. Jane did have her informal and raucous ESP Class, true, but that was of a limited size (had to fit in her livingroom) and duration.

          There is also the fact that both are alive, whereas Jane died in 1984. If you are attracted to the teachings of Elias or Abe you can find a way, paying if necessary, to get some live interaction or you might even get an email response from either.

          Interacting with Seth (or Jane, for that matter) now, in the present, is a very different matter.

          The question that began to arise in those groups I belonged to was “Why not learn to do some form of channelling ourselves?”

          So we began to actively explore this, not to create commercial success, but mostly out of an interest in the nature of channelling and all it implies. It turns out that channelling — or writing in trance, a related activity — is like any creative activity; some will be much better at it than others, and each will have their own distinctive output, although there will be points in common.

          Some discovered they were quite gifted and, with a little persistence, produced remarkably “clear” material of a very high quality.

          I was a laggard — my own internal resistance and, perhaps, the nature of my particular mind & personality meant that I just couldn’t seem to get the hang of this. Years after this group activity died down I found myself writing in trance, when laboring over just a few paragraphs of writing — the clue was that what had seemed like a few minutes was in reality hours.

          The resulting writing wasn’t “cosmic” in nature, either, but definitely distinct from anything I’d written prior to this.

          Whether you prefer the Seth material, the teachings of Elias or Abe, or that of any other “invisible” teacher, publicly known and published or not, I would hope that such teachings would spur you on to connect with your own greater self. Here is a reservoir of wisdom, experience, and guidance. This being exists, despite the ignorance of science and/or the extremely warped ideas of psychiatry. It is very, very close at hand but — at the moment, anyway — can’t be reached via cellphone or email.

          Bill I.

      3. But Does Seth Get Sufficient Respect? #1
        Bill Said

        There is Bridging Science and Spirit (Common Elements in David Bohm’s Physics, The Perennial Philosophy, and Seth) by Norman Friedman, but how many folks have read that?

        Bill just brought, Bridging Science and Spirit, from Amazon £1=53p + postage.

        Compare Seth’s philosophy with most professional philosophers and he comes out way ahead. Way ahead of any religion.

        My favorite quote is “Devine nonchalance”


  4. Reality – a computerised virtual world?
    I too have been thinking about reality. My own experiences make it seem more and more like it is a virtual reality world, a computerised vision.

    The world appears to be returning to the beginning, the Garden of Eden – but it really is E-Den we need to think of. The tree of life and the tree of knowledge relate to a computerised tree of files, and data.

    As for reincarnation, the idea of fitting ourselves into a virtual reality for this life, then coming out and returning into the virtual world to play through a different life, is not so far fetched as it may at first seem.

    As for consciousness; I have already experienced my “soul” as an energy being of pure awareness. That awareness can expand as we live out experiences in our virtual reality world.

    Things do change when we go to sleep. I have experienced that too.

    I find the way we have “apps” which is short for applications very apt. Really it should have been “appls” (pronounced apples) but as there was already a computer system called Apple this was modified slightly. But with so many apps/appls in existence, and the intention of putting these onto computers rather than just mobile phones it brings the computerised virtual reality even closer to the public domain.

    The more I observe the world around me the more I believe it is just a gigantic computer programme. I see the patterns, or sub-routines, taking place at all levels. I see words, places, items, subjects, repeated over and over again. It is as if the data programme for these things is not as extensive as it should be and it has to repeat data over and over again. It also explains some of the coincidences that exist day after day.

    I would like to believe I am wrong, but as time progresses I consider my hypothesis is more accurate than we think.

    1. Virtual or Symbolic?
      Carol writes:

      “I too have been thinking about reality. My own experiences make it seem more and more like it is a virtual reality world, a computerised vision…The world appears to be returning to the beginning, the Garden of Eden – but it really is E-Den we need to think of. The tree of life and the tree of knowledge relate to a computerised tree of files, and data…As for reincarnation, the idea of fitting ourselves into a virtual reality for this life, then coming out and returning into the virtual world to play through a different life, is not so far fetched as it may at first seem.”

      Dear Carol:

      I use the analogy of networks and servers when posting comments to places discussing relevant topics — it’s apt, you could say.

      We are as networked devices in this analogy, our “greater selves” as servers, but I also view the entire complex of modern data communications — the Internet, zillions of computers, smartphones & tablets, I/P cellular and satellite networks, massive server farms, the “cloud,” and even the “Internet of Things” — as being symbolic of inner realities.

      In other words, we are thoroughly connected, inwardly, but our science has yet to cotton to this (owing to its outer focused nature). Most of us aren’t usually conscious of this aside from occasional spontaneous experiences; those who explore such realities, consciously, utilizing various methods & techniques, are more conscious of it, and phenomena like telepathy make great sense owing to this connectedness.

      Regarding reincarnation — there are ways to tune into this, while a good many folks are much closer to a natural awareness of other lives than others (even though those who are not may imagine that these folks are “crazy”). For such folks, a brief and conscious experience of another life experience may intrude into their present life at odd moments.

      Still, the usual idea of reincarnation involves a linear concept of time — you’re born, die, born again, die again, etc., etc., much as the days of the week follow each other.

      It turns out the reality is more complex (and difficult to accurately describe) — each life experience occurs simultaneously; that is, each is an extension into physical reality and time, an extension of what I have been calling the greater or larger self in some of my recent comments here, and that larger version of self exists outside of space and time. What this means, practically, is that any number of versions of you or me — “incarnations” — exist at once to that larger self, no matter when they are living; it also means that different versions of you might be alive in the same time, in frequent but unconscious telepathic contact (and sharing the dream environment).

      I don’t really like to pontificate on these topics, believing it is much more useful to point to ways for any person to experience these realities directly.

      That’s what the Doorways page on my primitive RealityTest website is about, and it’s found at

      I believe speculation and analysis are fine (fun, even, at times) but also believe that experience comes first.

      This is not the same as laboratory procedures, and it also suggests that sharing experience is useful and important.

      Bill I.

      1. request for participants
        I have been reading some of the entries here and am interested in what you are discussing about the Seth material. I am a long-time student of Seth and Jane’s work. Currently I am a doctoral student and my dissertation is on the wisdom in the Seth material and how it is being put to work in the world. My focus is on how the Seth material has affected worldviews and whether or not any practical benefit has been experienced by Seth’s students. My research will begin this summer (2011). Would any of you Seth readers be willing to be interviewed at that time? If you have the slightest interest (no commitment required until I explain more) please let me know and I will keep you posted as I get closer to the interview dates. Currently my proposal is about to be submitted for approval. Thank you


        1. Welcome to the Grail!
          Welcome to the Grail, Joyce!

          That research sounds really intriguing. May I suggest that you write about it as an entry in your blog, that way more people will be able to read it?

          Hope you succeed, and that later you keep us posted on the results 🙂

        2. For Sure
          [quote=jkilmartin] My research will begin this summer (2011). Would any of you Seth readers be willing to be interviewed at that time? If you have the slightest interest (no commitment required until I explain more) please let me know and I will keep you posted as I get closer to the interview dates. Currently my proposal is about to be submitted for approval. Thank you


          Hi Joyce. I would be happy to contribute. I often say that reading Seth was like coming home … it was a worldview I was already comfortable with yet had never seen it put into words before then.


      1. The Seth entity was really
        The Seth entity was really totally cool – very funny, very down to earth, and never took itself too seriously. He was really astounding just as someone to be around. Even if this was some elaborate fabrication of Jane’s imagination it was one hell of a fabrication. “Seth” as a work of fiction would have been no less amazing.
        I was into it in the late 1970’s and early 80’s. I still remember what an event was “The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events.” My wife wrote Jane a letter which was a veiled inquiry about me and my prospects as a struggling writer and human being actually, and I will never forget the little note she sent back with the word “book” written as “Bo-ok!” My name was Bo though she did not know that. Whooooaaaa!
        Thank you Seth. Coming from you that gave me the courage to stay my course.

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