Have You Ever Been Experienced?

in aakom •  8 months ago

The most recent Pew Forum research specifically on mystical experiences showed that almost 50% of Americans claimed to have had at least one such experience in their life.

Let's first have a quick look at some data. You may also like to indulge in some musical mood-setting: Jimi Hendrix ~ Are You Experienced

The actual wording of the question was: "Would you say that you have ever had a 'religious or mystical experience'-- that is, a moment of sudden religious insight or awakening?"

Looking at the full report (pdf), and removing those respondents who belong to religious denominations that actively practise states of ecstasy or transcendence, we are still left with a figure of almost 40%. Intriguingly, even among those who claim no religious affiliations, the figure drops to only 33%.

This Pew Forum survey was conducted in 2009 and is consistent with a similar one done in 2006. the authors of the report highlight that these percentages are double what they were some 50 years ago.

A UK survey conducted by MORI in 1998 shows some similar percentages. When asked about their experiences (rather than beliefs), we find quite a high proportion claim to have experienced ghosts (37%), guardian angels (31%), telepathy (35%), premonition/ESP (41%), plus out of body experiences (21%) and near-death experiences (17%), and an astonishing 79% have had deja-vu experiences.

So my question is, away from the anonymity of survey questionnaires, why are most people so reticent to discuss their experiences? The obvious answer is their fear of ridicule. But isn't this a form of self-censorship? The above figures show that the chances of a receptive ear are actually much higher than an individual may believe. That fear may well be unfounded.

Where does this self-censorship come from? Most people seem more comfortable discussing their somatic medical conditions than their mental states. Perhaps most believe that their physical problems arise from outside, and therefore will not be looked upon as some stain on their self-image? Chances are, that auto-censor has been built up from childhood and over many years.

Children can be both cruel and sensitive, so the barriers to ridicule are built early on. But surely, supportive parents and relatives can help a child overcome such fears and grow up to express their extraordinary gifts, even if different from others? Sadly, my experience is that most parents are damaged themselves.

I have to admit that as a young child I kept secret certain transcendental experiences. From what I recall, it wasn't so much fear of ridicule as the fear that it was somehow wrong. When I looked around at the world, I saw that nobody talked about these experiences; either I was being excluded from a big secret or, more likely, nobody knew anything about them.

Later, in my early 20s, I read more widely and made contact with people who appeared to understand what I was talking about. Even so, it still bugged me as to why our broader culture largely ignored the natural human potentials that could make all our lives better, and more interesting. Instead, I saw people truly believe the false realities presented by the media and backed up by other similar people.

At times, I felt it was some huge cosmic joke; but mostly, I felt deep sadness thinking of the millions of people locked in an internal struggle between their public persona and their inner mind. And, that mind sometimes sends out distress calls, hoping that the consciousness would wake up, but every morning that public persona is starched and smoothed for yet another day of dull role-playing.

The media constantly effervesces about the latest potential breakthroughs that will herald a technological utopia. Well, how's that going so far? The technetronic trap is being built while most are asleep. Extraordinary human abilities are being systematically degraded by full spectrum toxification of the environment: air, water, food and EMFs. What I find most disturbing is that there will soon be no healthy environments left for human habitation.

So, is there a solution to this? Well, on a platform such as Steemit, we can be as anonymous as we desire. This in itself means that we can, in theory, communicate more freely about our lives and experiences. I know there are websites and forums dedicated to these issues, although I find a lot seem focused on promoting their theories (and seminars) rather than genuine research and personal experiences.

What I always suggest to people is that the only equipment needed to be a "psychic researcher" is a pen and some paper. Writing things down externalizes them so that they become new inputs, rather than just being the same thoughts going around in our heads. Those new inputs then start to affect internal states - a kind of self-therapy through feedback. Then, the writing starts to flow and a myriad ideas flood out; and then, at some point, comes the confidence to reach out and discover what others have experienced.

The first step is to stop the self-censorship within oneself, then to seek out those with whom to confidently share one's experiences, then new experiences will naturally arise.

Feel free to start with a comment below.

"Not necessarily stoned, but beautiful."


A better version on Vimeo: Jimi Hendrix ~ Are You Experienced

images: my design, pixabay



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good post & important information, thanks for this.

Wouldn't the nature of opening up an anonymous discussion here on Steemit be contrary to shedding the very "self - censorship" you so eloquently described? Also, I'm not quite sure what you meant by "...there will soon be no outside left." It's all interesting to say the least.

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Perhaps I should have made that point clearer. I meant that as a first step to break the "silence", an individual can still gain from meaningful discussions even if they wish to retain their (pseudo-)anonymity. I think that meaningful exchanges and personal progress may be more important than necessarily "coming out".

It was just a suggestion to those who may still feel that this is too public an arena. Anyone who feels they would like to ask questions within a more private chatroom, then please follow the trail to the sister MAP project at @accelerator and sign up. Updates on this are coming soon - in the next day or so.

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... and "losing the outside?"

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That our toxic environment is spreading throughout the world, so that the idea of moving somewhere less toxic may soon be impossible.

let me think about expanding that sentence to make it clearer - thanks!
OK, edited it to make it less obscure!

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Got it. I think you're right though, there is not much "pristine" to be found in many places these days. Borneo and Antarctica maybe.

Your point about writing things down reminds me of Bloom's interpretation of Hamlet, "self-overhearing", where his monologues can be read as each sentence directly influencing the next through Hamlet hearing himself and 'responding' (he explains it a bit better than that haha).

The only non-chemical induced religious experience I can think of is remarkably boring: I was reading the Quran for the hell of it, went outside for a smoke and laid down on the deck. The sun hit me, then the normal tactile sensation of warmth progressed into... inner warmth? Eyes were closed, but somehow I felt like i shot to sun, then turned around, kinda had a "oh" moment then came back down. Washed over with feelings of warmth and contentment. Only lasted a couple minutes, nothing similar before or after.

I'm not a religious person, and I hadn't just read anything that deeply resonated with me or anything, but it still kind of freaks me out

The struggle described here is no doubt one I'm sure many other 'spiritualists' have faced at some point or the other. Initially, I too believed in concealing it, and making it seem like I was just 'another guy' in the crowd. This was even more so when I discovered and became part of my first spiritual group. They kept things very hush-hush, and were generally introverts.

However when I went to university for the first time, and did an intro course as a prelude to first year, I realized that though others hadn't necessarily had 'experiences' of the sort, they were definitely receptive to the concepts behind them, and how to make themselves more adept at the esoteric stuff. So I then had a new group of such people in university. And we generally spoke quite openly about how we went about life, but in a way so blatant and offhand (like Tom Ellis' titular character from the show Lucifer), that people often thought we were either joking, making excuses for other stuff, or just didn't understand what we were talking about cause the stuff we said about life sounded so off-kilter from what they were used to that they would just go "Oh okay" and walk away with a "Uh, weird..." look on their faces.

Then one day, one of our boys wound up talking to this one guy, a real waste-away called Saad, who was a hard-eyed realist, and he realized that we were being entirely serious about what we spoke about, and then essentially made it his life's mission to either prove us incorrect or crazy, or prove himself incorrect. So in about a week, we had members of the crew getting accosted by both people from our year and by some seniors who'd come demanding a 'demonstration' of psychic talent, or premonition, or even to mockingly ask if we made frequent practice of communicating with dead people. As would be the case with anyone else who is naturally proficient with those gifts, we knew that the effects worked best if they were just left on autopilot and allowed to do their thing without the wielder prodding them for results on demand. Obviously the naysayers would call it 'us making excuses'. So while some held out against the horsesh*t, others gave in and tried to utilize their gifts to convince them, but with non-believers, there's never "enough of a test". They need to keep baiting and disproving their own disbelief for the sake of a kick, which won't always come if the talent in question is under intense scrutiny.

The hardest part was when some of our own (who I personally knew possessed the aptitude we handled) actually sided against us with the naysayers and said they'd just been messing around the whole time and thought it was a joke, just to avoid being placed under a large yellow spotlight themselves. Didn't do group morale any good. Saad even tried to approach me with a whole group of guys to intimidate me into canning it, and to stop "spreading this bullsh*t around uni".

What I learned from that whole experience, is that I think the bigger problem people have with 'coming out' with their spiritual prowess, is that when others do too, the positivity of that experience spreads like wildfire. However, when the negativity comes out of the woodwork, it spreads like wildfire too, and a great many spiritually-inclined people are typically more sensitive and vulnerable to that kinda heat. Since spiritualists are constantly undergoing change, and they are always on a path of spiritual self-discovery (which automatically comes with normal self-discovery and development), they are afraid of dealing with too much of the negative energy that accompanies harsh criticism like the kind we faced. I remember two of our girls broke down three days in a row cause of it, and one of the lads' anxiety bursts started coming back with a vengeance shortly after he'd started to shed it. It was a very long two weeks...

Obviously the effect that might have in a place like this is significantly reduced, and like you've mentioned, it allows us to maintain a certain degree of anonymity when sharing spiritual experiences, but I think in order to get to a point where this can happen easier than it does now face-to-face, we'll have to wait for a time when 99% of the society around us completely gets that we're all from different stages in life's grand evolutionary curve, and that no one person's perspective or view of the world is "more right" than another's. We aren't quite there yet, but it's a matter of time.

At any rate, the fortunate thing is that most of the members of that group eventually recovered from all the bullying, grew slightly thicker skins, and continued to practice their spirituality openly, as we'd always agreed to do. Some still maintain barriers and 'self-censorship' around people that don't 'vibe' with them well, but for the most part, they all got through that one quite well. Learned that it was part of who they were, and since society is always seen encouraging people to be who they are, they were doing nothing wrong by following suit.