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A good book to get as a present, Michael! The "Authentic Self" is usually called the Higher self, isn't it?

Your extract suggests the book does not directly identify the qualities of the Authentic self, but do the authors imply that it is loving in nature? For instance, does the term "raising ones vibrations" mean something more positive than simply dropping the petty ego personalities?

"do the authors imply that it is loving in nature?"

I'm still in the middle of the book, so I can't say if a more complete description is offered later. I get the impression that there is some reluctance to ascribe specific qualities to Authentic Self because these would then be interpreted in terms of an ego persona. The point is made, though, that the individual Authentic Self is part of a larger whole, and that all Authentic Selves are ultimately connected -- in fact, are ultimately one.

Honestly, I'm not sure if this approach satisfactorily resolves the tension between Tollean mysticism and traditional Spiritualism or not. It's clearly a serious attempt to unite the two approaches. Does it work? I'm not sure.

I think that the belief that we move from ego mind to authentic self in one fell swoop may be due to some level of wishful thinking. There does not appear to be a free pass in this universe. Now living the life of a human might be rather restrictive and that soul may return to a higher level of awareness when it leaves the human body.

Some souls claim that they must reduce their vibration level to communicate through a medium to the former vibration level they had on earth so they appear to us as the same persona.

I think it depends on our level of soul development before the incarnation as a human and what progress we make while here on earth. I think too much is made of the ego being some kind of separate controlling entity rather than looking at the level of the soul in its ability to love and show compassion. Stated another way the ego mind is a reflection of the face of the soul.

As the soul develops it moves to higher planes of existence. If we instantly moved from ego mind to authentic self that appears to me to rule out this instant transformation from ego mind to authentic self. Consciousness evolves and this means that these planes or levels of existence exist.

Now NDE’s give most people a favorable snapshot of the other side and it appears we may not instantly evolve to an authentic self but the other side appears to be for most people a more loving and compassionate place to be.

The ego gets kind of a bum rap kind of like blame it on the ego when they use to say blame it on the devil. Some even claim the ego is the devil. The culprit is not the ego or the devil but ignorance. Now when a soul crosses over does it instantly become less ignorant? Maybe somewhat, maybe not.

The ego represents in some ways the level of development of the soul. The greater the level of love and divine intelligence a soul has attained the more what we term the ego mind will demonstrate love and compassion while in human form.

I prefer the term soul to spirit as I define spirit as the infinite Absolute, which we are a manifestation meaning expression of as a soul. One brief phase of soul development is living as a physical phenomenon we call a human Being.

"Tolle seems to regard the personality as an illusion that will dissolve when the body dies, while Spiritualism attempts to demonstrate that the personality survives death. Both outlooks, it seems to me, have something worthwhile to offer. On the one hand, the evidence for continuity of personality is, in my opinion, very strong; thousands of mediumistic communications attest to it, and I find many of these communications persuasive. On the other hand, who wants to survive as a bundle of quirks and worries and petty grudges? Wouldn't it be hell to be trapped with your chattering "ego-mind" forever? Sweet oblivion would be preferable"

Clearly, the belief that personality is "an illusion that will dissolve when the body dies" is incompatible with the best evidence we have from afterlife research.

If Tolle's idea is true then we have to a strong reason to think the most reliable afterlife evidence is incorrect, a kind of collective delusion or even fraud.

In principle, if we're non-physical souls, there is not reason to think we lose our individuality after death.

But preserving our individuality is not equivalent to preserving every aspect of it -fears, neuroses, complexes, tastes, etc., because not every aspect of the personality is essential.

I mean, many of these personality traits are adquired and accidental-- or contingent, for you fans of philosophical jargon. And many of them are dependent upon our particular enviroment, culture, education or condition.

For instance, imagine a person who's afraid of dying. That fear is dependent, for example, on the belief that death is "the end" or that it's painful.

But if that person survives death, and realizes that her beliefs about death are factually incorrect, she won't be afraid anymore. Hence that personality trait won't "survive" with her, it is not an essential aspect of her personality.

That is example is only for illustrative purposes. It's evident that some fears attached to certains memories could survives with the person, but what I mean is that they're no essential to our survival.

Of course, we may discuss what aspects or features of consciousness are essential or contigent, but I believe most of you'll agree what, if survival exists, subjectivity for example is more essential than, let's to say, my wishes of watching Sherlock Holmes or writting in this blog.

These latter things don't seem essential to my spiritual nature in any relevant sense, in spite of being important or frequent in my specific and historical-cultural dependent earthly life.

They're not primary nor essential from a metaphysical point of view. What's essential is our sense of self, individuality and subjectivity. The "I" awareness.

The common complains that that view implies an "ego" attachment and a sense of separation is misleading, for a previous condition to feel separated or connected to something is to realize that you're different-- i.e. a different soul/mind (identity).

And differentiation doesn't mean separation.

If we're immortal or at least if we'll exist like individual souls for a looooong time, it's unjustified to jugde in advance the eternity or the afterlife spiritual experience from the severely limited and short-sighted colored glasses of earthly neuroses, fears, frustrations and ignorance. It would be a case of extreme, illogical and apatic pessimism.

P.S
Look at this news on twin telepathy:

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2009/dec/06/twin-telepathy-sibling-bonds-sometimes-exceed-what/

Sorry for the OT, but i think you should take a look at the last interview of Skeptiko. It seems that Michael Persinger (not exactly a naive believer in the afterlife or psychic power) thinks that his last experiment has proven the reality of the telepathy connection between minds (that he calls quantum connection)!

Link: http://www.skeptiko.com/michael-persinger-discovers-telepathic-link/

Thanks for the link, Coffones. I'll look into it. I'm a little dubious, because in the past Persinger has made claims that seem overblown. For instance, he's said that his "God helmet" can recreate an NDE, but other researchers have not been able to replicate his results, and the specific statements made by test subjects who wore the helmet seem less than conclusive.

The book "Irreducible Mind" (p. 383) argues:

"The discrepancy between Persinger's claim to have stimulated NDEs and the actual data from his studies is particularly obvious in Persinger (1999).... Isolated elements might seem vaguely similar to those of an NDE ('I see a light'; 'I see trees'; 'I feel I'm not here ... not in my body ... I can't feel it'); but without much more detailed description, the claimed similarity between NDEs and experiences induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation is clearly premature at best."

Regrading twins, Guy Lyon Playfair wrote a good book on the subject, titled "Twin Telepathy."

Playfair discusses a couple of twin-telepathy cases here:

http://www.dprogram.com/twin_telepathy.html

“But if that person survives death, and realizes that her beliefs about death are factually incorrect, she won't be afraid anymore. Hence that personality trait won't "survive" with her, it is not an essential aspect of her personality.”

This is a good point my research indicates that indeed most that cross over have a lot less fears; as often they meet previously known souls on the other side that bring much comfort to them. Also they find they have guides and sometimes teachers that have been instrumental in their lives. Of course this is not always the case but most find the other side much less harsh than human life.

Especially with physical aliments and sickness the exception being if one has lived a very selfish life as a human there is often much mental anguish and regret that they lived such a selfish life on earth.

I think I remember that Tolle stated in his tape or book that the fear of death is the cause of either all or most of our neurotic behavior. Not sure I agree with that statement but I think it is a bigger fear then most people want to admit to themselves or others. Often a very hidden fear.

My experience and observation has been that one cannot pass along one’s so called enlightenment to another as Tolle is attempting to do. He suffered much before his enlightenment and that appeared to have much to do with his awaking. Effort does not appear to always equal results when it comes to trying to become enlightened. I suspect there are a host of variables that influence one’s enlightenment such as experiences, suffering, effort, fate, choices, and most of all experiences and choices in past lives.

But one can make a ton of money trying to teach others how they can become enlightened like you. I did hear Tolle on one of this tapes state that mankind has fallen from the grace of God which I thought was an interesting comment coming from someone that claims to be enlightened. I did not find that claim in his first book.

How does one fall from the grace of a deity that has perfect love and compassion, and has infinite awareness and understanding?

“If we're immortal or at least if we'll exist like individual souls for a looooong time, it's unjustified to jugde in advance the eternity or the afterlife spiritual experience from the severely limited and short-sighted colored glasses of earthly neuroses, fears, frustrations and ignorance. It would be a case of extreme, illogical and apatic pessimism.”

Well stated: this is why I tend to put more substance in mediums that have brought through what I would call advanced spirits that not only know about the other side most go to reside after human life but also in these other planes or levels of existence. It makes sense to me that these other planes or levels of consciousness exist if one has knowledge of the evolution of consciousness.

As a side note it is my belief that neuroses, fears, and frustrations are symptoms of ignorance as are attachments, cravings, grasping, and misguided desires. I have been dialoging with a Buddhist monk on these very issues this past month as even the Buddhists often confuse symptoms with origins.

I enjoyed reading the looooong time reference for a soul. Is a soul infinite, eternal with a born date, temporal as it merges with the infinite after a looooong time, or nonexistent as most Buddhists and all Advaita types teach. That could be a book or books on that subject.

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