Read these “classics” by Alexis (Published beginning 2001)
Hello From Heaven and The Reality of After-Death Communication
A review of the book, Hello from Heaven by Bill and Judy Guggenheim, April 2001. After-Death.com
One of the most provocative questions ever to be asked is, “Does individual consciousness continue to function after a person has physically died?” Simply put, “Do we continue to live after we’ve died?” At the outset the question has paradoxical implications, and yet, there are some who adamantly believe that life after death exists. Moreover, others believe they know that this is the case. Those who have undergone what are called “Near Death Experiences” (NDE’s); “Out of Body Experiences” (OBE’s); and yet another phenomenon, unexplained yet commonly reported, “After Death Communication” (ADC’s) are among the “survival” theory’s most avid supporters.
After Death Communication or “ADC” is a term that was coined by after death researchers, Bill Guggenheim and Judy Guggenheim, authors of the book Hello From Heaven. To them what defines an ADC is “…a spiritual experience that occurs when a person is contacted directly and spontaneously by a family member or friend who has died.” During the course of their research however, they quickly realized that because of the myriad circumstances that people conveyed in their personal accounts of how they received their ADC’s, they had to re-assess the parameters for what constituted an ADC and take into account its diverse forms.
Hello From Heaven does a comprehensive job of presenting the different ways an ADC can occur, from “Sentient ADC’s” (feeling a presence) and “Auditory ADC’s” (hearing a voice) to “Partial/Full Visual ADC’s” (seeing an apparition) and “Sleep State ADC’s” (dreaming of the loved one).
Their exhaustive research into the after death communication theory spanned 7 years prior to the publication of the book in which they amassed more than 3,300 first hand accounts across all fifty United States and ten Canadian provinces. Hello From Heaven is a compendium of 353 of those firsthand accounts. Based on their research they have estimated that at least 50 million Americans or 20% of the U.S. population has had at least one ADC.
This of course is a significant number of people, many of whom have very compelling stories to tell. In the course of my own (less formal) research I have talked to many individuals who have described similar encounters. One associate of mine told me a story of a friend who had recently lost her grandfather (within a year or so). She was in the downstairs section of the house doing some routine cleaning – her mind not particularly on her late grandfather. Suddenly, she felt the presence of “someone” near her, which was unmistakable. She looked up to find what looked to be her grandfather scurrying by her and up the stairs. My associate told me that she was not only startled by who or what stood before her but she was actually quite frightened and perplexed about what she had just seen. This of course, is a case of an ADC, which caused fear and trepidation, however to the contrary many of the accounts presented in the book clearly show a common element of calm, serenity and at times euphoria. Still despite the vividness of the ADC’s and the accompanying emotion of the experiencers as recounted to the authors, the resistance to such claims of an afterlife and communication with that realm are still quite prevalent.
The authors of Hello From Heaven point out that, “Historically, psychologists, psychiatrists, bereavement counselors, members of the clergy and others have dismissed ADC’s as ‘wish fulfillment’ and ‘grief induced hallucination.’ But many of the cases inked within the pages of the book speak of ADC encounters that took place either long after the loved one had died or at a time when the experiencer had long since “gotten over” the grief state, therefore the ADC clearly came “out of the blue.”
Dr. Risa Gold, M.D. a psychiatrist and grief specialist who appeared in the HBO documentary Life AfterLife had this to say about ADC’s: “As a psychiatrist I would not use the term ‘after death communication’ because that implies a belief system which some people don’t have. However, the experience of being contacted by a (deceased) loved one is known to psychiatry and it is part of the normal grief reaction for many people.”
Although a somewhat conservative view from an expert in the field of psychiatry, the connotation appears obvious.
Read the full article here.
Reality TV Takes on New Meaning with John Edward’s Crossing Over
On-location in New York City, May 2001. Originally published at JohnEdwardFriends.org
Alexis Brooks interviewed John on the set of “Crossing Over” early this year. Alexis is an author in the metaphysical and spiritual genre in her own right, and the questions she asks John, are not found in your usual “mainstream” John Edward interview. Alexis asks provocative questions: John provides enlightening answers – for the soul. The idea that an afterlife realm exists although prevalent in many cultural and religious doctrines, is still a theory that many grapple with. But if one presupposes a post life residence somewhere within the ether of the spirit world, perhaps one can entertain the idea of communicating with that realm.
John Edward, a rising star on this side of the veil wants us all to know that life and love are eternal and he holds steadfast to this message because he has been a medium for whom the message has been given and he says it comes from the “afterlife.”
His spirited TV program, “Crossing Over with John Edward,” which airs on the SciFi Network (Sun., 8-9pm ET/PT & Mon- Thurs., 11 & 11:30pm ET/PT) and is headed for syndication, has been the platform for these messages and more. Messages, which he says, are telepathically relayed from the energies who have departed physical life but still continue on in spirit form. Clearly this is a provocative claim – however it should be duly noted here that theories of an afterlife have not only been upheld by religions the world over, but by diligent research for well over a century that has spilled a cornucopia of data suggesting that such a realm may indeed exist.
Crossing Over has garnered an enormous and loyal following, peaking unprecedented interest to a mainstream audience, clearly crossing over to reach viewers from a diverse cultural, religious and socioeconomic scale to talk about the subject of death and life after death. When I asked Edward what he would attribute to the success of Crossing Over during a one-on-one interview on the set of the energy-filled show he said, “I think what’s driving Crossing Over’s (success) is as Gary Zukav put it in his (best-selling) book The Seat of the Soul – ‘As a society, we are evolving…’ and I think that on the planet and as a society, we are evolving. People are seeking knowledge and I think that they are seeking to identify with truth and seeking to identify with empowerment. I think Crossing Over is a show about life –
about how to better your life (and how to) lead a more fulfilling life with the people that you’re connected to that you love, family and friends. And to know that the ones you have lost physically are still spiritually connected to us.” Edward’s summation is, “I would attribute the (show’s) success to the tribute that we provide to the people that come here both living and ‘crossed over.’ “
While many are indeed openly amenable to his messages and even awe-struck by his accuracy and the process for which he gleans the messages, there are others who seem a bit perplexed as to why Edward can receive messages from “Dear Aunt Sarah,” and on a public stage no less and not receive the messages from their loved ones directly. So the burning question becomes, “why is this so?” But a possible answer may very well lie within the philosophical framework of the ESP (Extra Sensory Perception) process.
Many practitioners of metaphysics, spiritually transformative states and even ESP researchers say that the key to receiving information of any kind outside of the physical sensory system is in having and keeping an open-mind. In other words we must free ourselves of rigid dogma and act as an open conduit for information, whether they be mere intuitive hunches or that long awaited message from “Dear Aunt Sarah.” Many suggest meditation to help facilitate that process but my surmise is that an open mind, free of any one expectation may very well do the job.
Just prior to my interview with Edward, I sat in on a taping of the show and witnessed what I believe may provide a perfect illustration of this point. Read the full article here.
Victims of the Attack – Martyrs For Meaning
Written in the after-math of 9/11, September 2001. OfSpirit.com
The dramatic events of September 11, 2001 stifled routines and awakened senses.
We watched with inexplicable horror. We were dumbfounded and caught off guard. For this was an act of evil. It’s meaning, nothing more than highlighting the iniquity of those twisted enough to die and kill for a cause that most cannot even begin to fathom and surely we did not deserve it. But did this abhorrent event have meaning far beyond the scope of ordinary understanding?
Did we receive a “call to arms” – a forced reminder of the perennial wisdom we’ve long forgotten? It is clearly difficult to believe that perhaps on some level this event purposefully emerged from a tumultuous sea of disparate ideologies to shake us to our core and bind us together once again to the truth we’ve all but forgotten: the unifying principle – that of spirit. For I am sure many of us can admit that we have nearly severed our connection from the spiritual essence that is us in favor of fragmentation. Even in the world of savvy marketing, experts have advanced the idea that we are becoming a fragmented society and that “smart” advertisers must be cognizant of the multi-niches (the separations) that have been created and identify them in order to reach their target consumer, for this is the trend and so rather than recognize its inherent defect, the world of business has largely celebrated its arrival on the scene of society. Religions the world over continue to preach “their” truth as the truth while intimating that all others cannot be valid. I don’t believe that this is what religion intended and yet we pour our commitments into the interpretations rather than the fundamental and universal tenets that were meant to be understood.
The late Maulana Abul Kalam Azad a former leader for India’s Independence Movement once said, “The unity of man is the primary aim of religion. The message which every prophet delivered was that mankind were in reality one people and one community, and that there was but one God for all of them, and on that account they should serve Him together and live as members of one family. Such was the message, which every religion delivered. But curiously the followers of each religion discarded the message, so much so, that every country, every community and every race resolved itself into a separate entity and raised groupism to the position of religion.”
And so we have formed groups, coalesced with causes and challenged each other’s ideologies, each making a different point, each adamant about its absolute truth and each act reinforcing the barriers of our species that have no doubt been manmade. And then the events of September 11th took place. After we calmed our aching hearts and slowed the pace in an unending stupor, most of us did the only thing we thought was in our power. We prayed. We returned to our faith. We called friends and family and those we rarely speak to just to say, “hi,” and “are you okay?” and “let’s keep in touch.” Here in America, we grabbed every flag and sang every song that reflected our patriotism; our united cause, “One nation under God, indivisible…” Suddenly we realized that clinching that sale to reach budget for the quarter and catching that flight to land a new client was not what it was all about. In fact these former priorities became largely insignificant, no longer worthy of urgent pursuit. Suddenly everything took on new meaning, spirit was renewed and the divisions began to gray, at least for many of us and at least for the moment. But throughout this still unreal drama, other pictorials have also emerged. Hate crimes against those who even remotely resemble the alleged perpetrators of the attack are being carried out; racial slurs are being slung, people are being murdered and a doctrine whose denotation is that of good and love and peace is being misinterpreted by those who have bought into the stereotype as one of terror for a cause. And so this is the dichotomy that we are facing now, one of unity and further separation. We can choose which side of the created veil we wish to join. However we must, I believe, be mindful of the possible impetus for these horrendous attacks. Was this an attack on America, the world or self?
Read the full article here.
You Create Your Own Reality – So Says “Seth”
Published in ConsciousCreation.com – February 2001
“If you believe firmly that your consciousness is locked up somewhere inside your skull and is powerless to escape it, if you feel that your consciousness ends at the boundary of your body, then you sell yourself short, and you will think that I am a delusion. I am no more a delusion than you are.” -From the book, Seth Speaks
Many who are familiar with the esoteric writings of Seth channeled by the late author, Jane Roberts, believe that indeed his insight gave birth to the New Age Movement.
For some, The Seth Material raises lots of questions, for others – many answers. For me, I found the latter to be true.
Although the source of the information will no doubt challenge conventional thought, one must try to get beyond the messenger and entertain the message. As Seth, himself says:
“You would be much better off in reading this book if you asked yourself who you are, rather than asked who I am, for you cannot understand what I am unless you understand the nature of personality and the characteristics of consciousness.”
Seth’s wisdom and insight is not only thought provoking, but inspires us all to be more introspective about our own individuality and our interconnectedness to the universe…the interplay of which is more constant, more dynamic and more infinite than we might have ever imagined, if at all.
His basic tenet is, “You Create Your Own Reality,” (YCYOR)…with no exceptions. At the outset this may be a hard pill to swallow, especially when one applies this philosophy to all aspects of one’ s life and looks back in retrospect on circumstances that appeared totally out of one’s control. But if the information is gently assimilated with objective thought, an open heart and an attitude free of any specific belief system (at least while reading the material) one may find an innate resonance within the books pages.
In 1963 Jane Roberts, the author who claimed to channel the “energy personality essence, no longer focused in physical matter,” began her life changing trek along with husband and artist Robert Butts after a small series of transcendental experiences which included the writing of an automatic script entitled “The Physical Universe As Idea Construction.” She said that in the midst of her usual after dinner poetry writing sessions, she felt her consciousness leave her body and her “mind was barraged by ideas that were astonishing and new to me at the time.” Rather than being overwhelmed by sheer perplexity, Roberts decided to further investigate the process of what had happened to her. Her tenacity served as the impetus for what became a journey with Seth, which spanned some 20 years until her death in 1984. The result: volumes of “Seth dictated” books including well known titles, Seth Speaks-The Eternal Validity of the Soul, The Nature of Personal Reality and The Seth Material. As well, under current development are “The Early Sessions,” a collection of the first 510 Seth sessions which are being published by New Awareness Network, Inc. Taken collectively, this material contains information so impressive that the prestigious Yale University now houses this luminous body of work in its archives.
Read the entire article here.