Motion is the Eternal Order of Things
and Affinity its Handmaid
By Jeanne M. House
Dean Radin says in his book, “The Conscious Universe,” that anomalies carry with them, a seed of potential revolution. He goes on to say that these experiences suggest the presence of deep, invisible interconnections among people, and between objects and people. The most curious aspect of PSI experiences is that they transcend the usual boundaries of time and space. These PSI experiences break down the traditional notion of the subjective/objective dichotomy and favor a continuous spectrum.
The trick is, how can we measure this energy or invisible interconnection and how can we measure it repeatedly?
But, before we get into the actual events and the measurement of those events, let's look at the history of consciousness and its relevant aspects that may shed some light on the subject of apparitions.
In the “Introduction to the Original Edition of Roots of Consciousness,” Dr. Mishlove said, 'For me, the exploration of consciousness really has its origins in sparks of wonderment at my own existence…' He quotes the Rig Veda, which was written over 3,000 years ago, 'He who is the superintendent of this world in the highest heaven He alone knows, or, perhaps, even He does not know.' This suggests that even God probably has 'sparks of wonderment' about the world. For the ancients, the Natural world was seen as a “higher order of things.” The material world was the affect of underlying Causal Principles. These earlier civilizations experienced “sparks of wonderment” in the day-to-day workings of their lives. Could it be as man became more civilized, we just lost our memories of the inner-connectedness between higher and lower planes of existence?
Science and religion can learn from one another. Religion can teach science the appreciation of wonder and science can teach religion to test itself by proving itself wrong in order to re-create itself in a new way.
A Master of Wisdom, Kuthumi, in “The Mahatma Letters To A.P. Sinnett,” calls this 'a general unwillingness to give up an established order of things for new modes of life and thought.' In responding to a question that one cannot be expected to believe unless he becomes and eye-witness, he responds, 'Would the lifetime of a man suffice to satisfy the whole world of skeptics? …Test after test would be required and would have to be furnished; every subsequent phenomenon expected to be more marvelous than the one proceeding it.'…He goes onto describe a sure way of safeguarding the esoteric mysteries:
'to assure ourselves that the only salvation of the genuine proficients in occult sciences lies in the skepticism of thef public: the charlatans and the jugglers are the natural shields of the adepts.'
It appears that the “sheep” are relegated to prove to the “goats” by the use of mundane experiments that the higher or natural worlds do indeed exit. When in fact, until now, it was taken for granted by civilizations that were far less advanced than us.
In this third and final paper, I am going to attempt to analyze the concept of apparitions, primarily the appearance of Mother Mary, near Lourdes, France. My personal interest in this case lies in the fact that the apparition was of Mother Mary. The Blessed Virgin allegedly made an appearance in order to appeal to the world to pray and do penitence.
In order to even attempt to navigate through this discourse on what most people would consider an anomaly, it makes good sense to discover 'some linking principle' first and foremost. Before getting into theory, however, I would like to begin by describing the two miraculous events that I will later discuss in terms of the empirical, theoretical, skeptical and spiritual perspectives.
THE MIRACLE AT LOURDES
Excerpts from, “The Miracle of Lourdes,” by Ruth Cranston, pages 8-10:
In the middle of the nineteenth century, one day, February 11th, 1858, the Virgin Mary appeared to a child of a poor family of a region -- a girl of fourteen named Bernadette Soubirouswhile she was gathering firewood. Bernadette saw “The Lady” in a sort of radiant mist high up in a rock in a grotto above the river. She was a young and very beautiful lady, in a white robe with a blue sash. The girl saw her so vividly that she could not understand why everyone else did not see her too.
After the first day The Lady came to Bernadette in a series of visions, or apparitions, as they have traditionally been called. She spoke to the child in the Lourdes dialect saying, “Please come here everyday for a fortnight. Go and tell the priests to build a chapel on this spot. I want people to come here in procession …Pray----tell them to pray! Prayer and penitence! (The Lady stressed this over again.)…Go drink in the spring and wash in it,” she commanded. I am the Immaculate Conception. I desire a chapel here.” The spring was invisible and unknown until the lady pointed it out to Bernadette and led her to dig in the earth and make it gush forth. At first it was a mere trickle, no thicker than a finger. Soon it became a powerful stream, made famous by the cures, which took place there.
From the first, the country people believed in Bernadette. She communicated her intense faith to them and they followed her implicitly, praying with her at the grotto at each of the “apparitions” of The Lady. They gathered in small bands at first, and then in crowds from all over the country. They set up a rude little shrine and brought candles and flowers and small gifts. Local clergy were first cool and aloof. Civic authorities scorned the visions, threatened Bernadette and her family, closed the grotto, and confiscated the shrine.
But then the miracles began…After the first cures, the crowd trembled. Hotels sprang up, churches were builtall the fanfare of a tourist and pilgrimage center quickly developed.
Finally the Bishop of the diocese set up a commission of investigation to look into the matter. The commissionhardheaded and skeptical menafter four years' study came through with a complete vindication of Bernadette and a declaration that certain cures that had occurred at the shrine definitely must be considered miraculousi.e., contrary to all known biological laws and medical science.
In January, 1862, the Bishop of Tarbes and Lourdes issued a decree: “ We declare that Mary the Immaculate, Mother of God, did in reality appear to Bernadette Soubirous on February 11, 1858, and on certain subsequent occasions, to the number of eighteen in all, In the grotto of Massabielle near the town of Lourdes…and that the faithful are justified in believing it certain.”
Bernadette was canonized (1933) in a magnificent ceremony at St. Peter's, the Pope and all of the College of the Cardinals were participating. She had died years before (1879), in a convent ant Neversa person remarkable for her independence of spirit, absolute honesty and courage, who had stood by her visions and her convictions despite threats of prison and insane asylums, persecutions and all sorts of humiliations. The transformation of her life and character, under the influence of her visions and alleged contact with the Heavenly Lady, changed her from an ignorant, undeveloped little peasant girl into a woman of extraordinary strength and reserve. It is one of the amazing facets of this altogether amazing story.
As written above, Bernadette was vindicated due to the many remarkable healings that took place after the visitation of 'The Lady.' It appeared that the world was in need of not just physical healings, but a spiritual healing. 'The Lady' appeared to Bernadette in order for her to appeal to the world to pray and do penitence. (The physical healings of the people who came seemed to be the reward for this service.)
Was this 'vision' a product of her imagination or did it actually exist? Bernadette saw 'the Lady' in a radiant midst, high above a grotto. She saw and heard her a total of eighteen different times. Bernadette described Mother Mary as a beautiful young lady with a white robe and a blue sash.
'The Lady', spoke telepathically to her. No one heard the words but Bernadette. In “Roots of Consciousness,” Dr. Jeffrey Mishlove writes about Emmanuel Swedenborg, (1688-1772), who journeyed into his own “inner world” and describes this process, ' As the influx into the internal organs of hearing is different from the influx of man's voice into the external organs, the discourse of the spirits was heard by none but myself whose internal organs by the divine mercy of the Lord, were open…'speech and discourses of spirits does not enter through the ear, nor by the medium of the air, but by an internal way, yet into the same organs of the head or brain. Hence the hearing in both cases is alike.'
Mishlove describes Gustav Theodor Fechner's vision of a “radiant mist,” as creatures of the sun with ethereal bodies. 'their skin is merely connected vapors, like soap bubbles. There transparent natures can take on colors. They change their form and can expand and contract according to their feeling.'
No one else witnessed 'the Lady,' but they did witness the affects 'the Lady' had on Bernadette's personality. Her character was transformed from a meek and mild personality, to a strong and forthright individual, full of conviction.
This same experience was the case when Mother Mary also appeared to three peasants, children in Fatima. Portugal on May 13, 1917. They were startled by a brilliant flash. Thinking it was lightning they ran for cover. Before them on the top of a small tree, they saw a ball of light. Inside the ball was a beautiful lady. Lucia, one of the witnesses, wrote, “It was a lady dressed all in white, more brilliant than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal glass filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun.” Lucia later wrote that she 'seemed to be made of light.' The children were locked in a public jail and they were threatened to be boiled in oil. They also were told that they would be killed. But, each one of them held to their convictions through the entire ordeal.
Recent research has confirmed that human beings operate on more than five sensory levels. Human magnetic sense research has proven that people are more or less sensitive to the magnetic field that surrounds the earth and can therefore orient themselves in accordance with their position within that field. Frank Brown, at Northwestern University, has shown that fluctuations in the earth's magnetic field affect many natural processes, such as, the respiration of plants.
To continue formulating a theory that fits the available known facts, all occultism has recognized the existence of vital force. Mesmer called it animal magnetism and Mary Baker Eddy believed that it was the secret of health. In 1845, in Germany, a book called, “Physico-Physiological Researches on the Dynamics of Magnetism, etc. in Relation to the Vital Force”, (by a chemist and physicist), Baron Karl Von Reichenbach, caused a sensation.
Here is an excerpt:
While treating a patient he spoke about her father…I directed him to hold before the patient, in the middle of the night, the largest existing magnet, a nine-fold horseshoe capable of supporting about 90 pounds of iron…This was done and the following morning I was informed that the girl had really perceived a DISTINCT CONTINUOUS LUMINOSITY As long as the magnet was kept open…The fiery appearance was about equal in size at each pole…close upon the steel from which it streamed, it appeared to form a fiery vapour, and this was surrounded by a kind of glory of rays…
He found four more neurasthenic girls and they all saw the same light; some of them saw it as a kind of Aurora Boreallis, radiating a reddish-yellow light from the South Pole and the bluish-freen light from the North. He hid a magnet from one of the girls and she still felt it and looked for it under her bed. He tried blindfolding her; she knew when the magnet was uncovered. When one of the women was out cold from a cataleptic condition, the horseshoe magnet was brought to her hand, the hand stuck to it as if the flesh had been a piece of metal. But once her health was improvedshe lost her ability to see the “aurora” around the magnets.
Reichenbach tried magnetizing other substances; crystals were an obvious choice. He tried the affect of unmagnetised crystals on a colleague and sure enough, the completely healthy man unmistakably felt the action of the crystal. The obvious inference was that magnets and crystals both conduct electromagnetic force; but this quickly proved incorrect. So what was the force? He called it 'ODIC FORCE.' Human beings possess 'ODIC FORCE' in an unusual degree, he discovered; it can be seen as a kind of light streaming from the finger ends. He discovered that a third of all people seem to be more or less sensitive to this 'ODIC FORCE' In England, James Braid, found a simpler explanation for this force that he called HYPNOTISM. However, ODIC FORCE still remains unforgettable, however, and it is classified in the library under electricity.
By 1939, Wilhelm Reich had discovered a new form of energy unknown to physics: The vital energy that regulates the health of living creaturesORGONE ENERGY, a visible, measurable and applicable energy of a cosmic nature. This is a blue energy which permeates the whole universe, and which forms a field around living beings. He believed that Orgone energy permeates everything and even caused the flickering in stars.
Did Reich stumble on an important discovery? Scientists are not prepared to make a careful and unprejudiced examination of his work. Dr. David Foster had a notion that cosmic rays may carry information codes. Reich felt that these cosmic rays are fundamentally Orgone energy and that they possess inherent organizing powers over matter.
(some of the SKEPTICAL is touched upon under the SPIRITUAL PERSPECTIVE)
Was this 'visitation' at Lourdes, France a figment of Bernadette's imagination? In “The Roots of Consciousness,” Mishlove describes some ways in which Carl Jung would view the situation-- He points out how the mind's image-forming processes invest a great deal of psychic energy in forming new images of his relationships and new unconscious links with the creator. In “The Varieties of Religious Experience”, William James points out that the unseen region in question is not merely ideal, for it produces effects in the world. God is real since he produces real effects. (If it is real to the person, it is real.) He is not taking the position of the skeptic, however, I put his viewpoint here, since he validates Bernadette' frame of mind or what she “imagines.” Raynor C. Johnson, remarks in “Nurslings of Immortality, 'It is not, I think, generally known that apparitions have been created deliberately and experimentally.' He suggests that the-will-to-appear in Bernadette could've been strong enough to invoke an actual condition for an appearance to seem to occur.
Others may see Bernadette as dreaming or deluded. It appears that many religious characters such as Sufi mystics reach ecstatic states in order to get in touch with the divine. And C.W. Leadbetter claims that most of his visitations from Ascended Masters happened while he was asleep. Does this refute the reality of the experience or the validity of the message?
Carl Jung describes archetypal myth-making as a way for our conscious mind to communicate with the collective unconscious or what the Eastern mind would call the Akasha.
Bernadette was just one of many like her who have witnessed an apparition. You could say apparitions go as far back as Moses who saw an apparition in a burning bush or Mary herself, who was visited by angel named Raphael or even the 'resurrected Jesus,' (an ethereal version of Himself), who some saw and others could not see. Many great religions and more recently, key groups and societies such as the Theosophical Society, the I AM Movement and the Summit Lighthouse, claim to have heard, and seen apparitions, originating from Higher Intelligences equal to Mother Mary.
In fact, these appearances, visions or voices, were the impetus in starting all three of the organizations. In 1894, Baird T. Spaulding and a small group of reporters contacted the Great Masters of the Himalayas, which they presented in a book series called, “The Life and Teachings of the Masters of the Far East.” In their “eye-witness” accounts, they not only saw the Masters, but they communicated to them as well. In volume I, on page 12, Spaulding writes, “ Masters are able to communicate with each other instantly by thought transference or, as they call it, a force much more subtle than either electricity or wireless.”
In the book, “The Masters and the Path,” C.W. Leadbeater describes the process of encountering what he calls, “Perfect Men.” He says that some of us are in the process of developing and unfolding our higher senses which are latent in every man, and will be the heritage of all in the future. By means of those senses we are able to see the ladder of evolution extending far above us as well as, far below us. We can also see that there are men standing on every rung of that ladder. ( he uses men for both man/woman).
He goes on to say that evolution is pressing onward and upward; and it is therefore the existence of Perfect Men at the end of this long line of ever-unfolding power, wisdom and love is the most natural thing in the world.
He describes visiting these Perfect Ones in our Astral and Mental bodies according to our development; but we are not at the same time in ours, and that is why on the physical plane people tend to be skeptical about such experiences. 'Men object: “But in these cases either you who saw them were out of the physical body, and may have been dreaming or deluded, or those who appeared to you came phenomenally and then disappeared again; so how do you know that they were what you suppose them to be?”
“People have suggested that I and others who have the same experiences may be but dreaming, since these visits take place during sleep of the body; I can only reply that it is a remarkably consistent dream simultaneously by a large number of people.”
Kuthumi, a Perfect Man, commands Sinnett on page 9 of “The Mahatma Letters,” …'we neverexcept in cases of utmost momentvisit him or even cross the threshold of his door in visible appearance. Is any of you so eager for knowledge and the beneficent powers it confers as to be ready to leave your world and come into ours?'
A glance or glimpse of a Master is all that is necessary to turn our worlds around! In Sufism, they call it “an unanticipated look at the Guru that affects one profoundly. At that moment one realizes one's connection with the teacher.
Kuthumi says that, 'One has to get a knowledge of spiritual facts by personal experience and actual observation. ' Facts looked at directly at are vital, when they pass into words half the sap is taken out of them,' as Tyndal puts it.
In “Man's Latent Powers,” Phoebe Payne describes man's 'etheric body': This body of physical material acts as the vehicle for the circulation of human vitality, and is an infinitely delicate bridge between the psychic world and the physical brain consciousness. In addition to being a bridge that connects man's subjective experience with the brain and the nervous system, the etheric body has the very important function of transmitting vitality from the surrounding atmosphere into the dense physical vehicle and of eliminating used etheric matter.
Emmanuel Swedenborg is described in “Roots of Consciousness,” by Mishlove as saying that the world to which we all go after death like a number of different spheres representing various shades of light and happiness, each soul going to that for which his spiritual evolution has fitted him. Mishlove also mentions how St.Augustine's describes the City of God s very vivid picture of the evolution of the soul through stages towards the heavenly kingdom. He also describes the Cabala or Tree of Life, as a very sophisticated map of the inner spaces through which consciousness progresses. Through “good acts” and mediation on higher spheres, one progresses through a hierarchy of visions that lead to the ultimate mystical union.
And lastly, Mishlove describes Gustav Theodor Fechner's origin of consciousness:
We have a series of thresholds, upper and lower waves. The highest consciousness is God, who planned vaguely at first and is realizing His purpose in all the world processes, so that His plan progresses and becomes more definite and conscious.
What does all this have to do with Bernadette and Mother Mary? Well, according to many of these above belief systems, Bernadette may have been operating on another level of consciousness than the mere physical level. (She probably earned this by purifying herself or just being so young and untainted.) Also, Mother Mary did not appear to be in a physical body, but a more “dream-like” or “ethereal form.” (Since Masters have perfected their lower or physical body and mental bodies, they may not choose re-create a physical body unless it is absolutely crucial. Sometimes they borrow a physical body to communicate through, as in the case of Helena Blavatsky who wrote “The Secret Doctrine” this way and “Isis Unveiled.” Godfre Ray King and Elizabeth Claire Prophet and Mark Prophet, also claimed to be “Messengers” of the Ascended Masters.)
Fechner describes how God comes into consciousness in us…Life and consciousness never arose, he said, but are original activities of the universe; they are two expressions of the same thing and differ only as a circle-seen from within differs from what one seen from without. From without, all is manifold, from within, all is unity, and both together constitute all there is. The soul is not punctual, but it is pervasive throughout the whole body.
Kuthumi (who some think to have been Pythagoras, if one believes in reincarnation), continues in, “The Mahatma Letters To A.P. Sinnett,” 'Nature is destitute of goodness or malice; she follows only immutable laws…'
'The existence of matter than is a fact; the existence of motion is another fact, their self-existence and eternity and indestructibility is a third fact. And the idea of pure spirit as a Being or an Existence-give it whatever name you will- is a chimera, a gigantic absurdity.'
'Why is it more impossible that matter should produce spirit and thought, than spirit or the thought of God should produce and create matter…In other words, we believe in MATTER and matter alone, in matter as visible nature and matter in its invisibility as the invisible omnipresent omnipotent Proteus with its unceasing motion which is its life, and which nature draws from herself since she is the great whole outside of which nothing else can exist.'
MOTION is the eternal order of things and affinity or attraction its handmaid of all works. COSMOLOGY is the physiology of the universe spiritualized, for there is but ONE LAW. RESOURCES
1. “Roots of Consciousness, “ by Dr. Jeffrey Mishlove, Internet version.
2. “The Varieties of Religious Experience,” William James, 1958, Penguin Books
3. “The Occult A History,” Colin Wilson, 1971, Random House
4. “Life and Teachings of the Masters of the Far East”, vol I Baird, T. Spaulding, DeVorss Publications
5. “The Masters And The Path,” C.W. Leadbeater, 1925, The Theosophical Publishing House
6. “The Mahatma Letters To A.P. Sinnett,” 1979, Theosophical Publishing House
7. “ The Miracle at Lourdes,” Ruth Cranston, 1955, McGraw Hill
8. “ The Conscious Universe,” Dean Radin, Ph.D, 1997, Harper San Francisco