Thursday, October 04, 2007

NDEs and the Divinatory Arts

This topic concerns what is seen by many people as a conflict between the fact that I am an astrologer and intuitive counselor as well as a serious researcher of near-death states. Society still considers this a no-no, and amounts to a breach of ethics in some scientific circles. I used to “hide” my other interests because of this, until I finally realized there is no conflict here and no reason for me to apologize to anyone. Here is a question/answer session I had recently. It will give you a opportunity to explore both the pros and cons with this issue. PMH


“I am writing about something on your website that is confusing and disappointing. You say that you are involved in astrology and can be hired to perform astrological readings. Astrology seems to be based on superstition. This is in contrast with your research on near-death experiences (NDEs) which seems to be careful, extensive, and unbiased. And, NDE research and findings are dealing with ultimate truths.

I recently read a book by Dr. Kenneth Ring entitled Lessons from the Light. In this book, Dr. Ring mentions your work and briefly describes your NDEs. I was impressed with what he said of you. I am also impressed with what I learned about you from other sources. Since Dr. Ring referred to your books, I purchased one them, Beyond the Light, and I am half way through reading it. I don’t recall finding references to astrology in your book, Dr. Ring’s book, or books by Dr. Raymond Moody that I read years ago.

I read your book and Dr. Ring’s book for two reasons. First, I am very curious about the subjects. Second, the NDE accounts and discussion make me more hopeful during the bad times I am going through. But, finding mention of astrology on your website was disappointing and reduced the impact of your book. Now, I don’t know what to think about your research and conclusions.

Why would you be involved with both NDEs and astrology? If you have time, I would appreciate your comments on this.” …Rand


I am sorry you feel disappointed in my references to astrology or the fact that I am an astrologer. Certainly, many people practice a form of astrology that is based on superstition, assumptions, wishes, or for a myriad of other biases. This misunderstanding about astrology has dogged its existence for more years than I can count. Fortunately for me, I had very good teachers at the onset who made it clear that predictions and pie-in-the-sky promises had no place in true astrology. Astrology is both a science (based on mathematical configurations) and an artform (based on intuition and an understanding of the influence of patterns). As a science, often referred to as "divine science," it focuses on time in the sense of the growth and maturity of human beings and how various trends and changing pressures might affect people. I liken an astrological chart to a road map - nothing more. It shows where your dirt roads are, mountain passes, highways, ponds, rivers, living spaces, but it never (under any condition) tells you where to go or what to do with your life. Those choices are up to you and you alone. Astrology merely "paints pictures" and gives you a better sense of your various assets and liabilities and how you might best use what you have to improve your life. It is also very helpful in understanding the masses and why history repeats itself.

There are many systems of astrology - some not based on math at all, but on animals and their traits, or on the flow of energy (called "dragon's breath"). I am acquainted with these, but choose not to practice any of them. Even though some of the other systems of astrology seem "far out," ridiculous, or just plain stupid, there is a truth that underlies them - in fact all of them - and that is throughout humankind and our planet earth there is a pulse, a beat, a rhythm to all things. Call it planet-influenced, God-led, the science of day/night and the influence of weather, or the outworking of human belief, this rhythm exists. There are many ways of plugging into this rhythm. Some use divination to do so, others dreams - maybe intuition, psychic visions, prayer, religious ceremony, vision quests, the divinatory arts, psychic phenomena, to mention just a few.

I make no apology for the fact that I am an astrologer, a numerologist, and a rune caster. These are aspects of the divinatory arts, particular systems that work well with me and enable me to ensure that my ego will not be involved when others seek my counsel, that I can stay focused on the individual and through that focus remain steady in my devotion to God and that which enhances, honors, and respects the higher orders of love, truth, and joy. I was an astrologer and a numerologist before I died, more of a technician, really. Afterward, I could no longer practice as I did before. I threw out all the rules and regulations I previously used, and simply flowed into the larger picture of what these practices were set up to show. It was that larger picture, that deeper truth, which spoke to me and drives me still. I pray and meditate before any session and dedicate my work solely to God and whatever is best for the highest good of that person and all concerned with that person. Please do not compare me with other divinatory practitioners. I am not interested in the business of these crafts, nor in impressing anyone or playing games. My job as I see it is to serve the Greater Good.

In the early days of setting up my website, my webmaster and I discussed how this could be done. Would my website be dedicated entirely to my research of near-death states? Would I mention my other involvements? Would I stay clear of anything intuitive or psychic? Would featuring both sides of my life, the many sides of my life, lessen my reputation as a researcher of near-death states? This situation was a tough one. I prayed about it for days, and then finally just surrendered to God. Thy Will, not my will. I came to realize that the only self I can be is my whole self. I am a disciplined researcher who follows a strict protocol and cross-checks everything I do: I am a practitioner of the divinatory arts who allows the wisdom within to surface when others can be aided by my doing so: I am a deeply passionate spiritual being who, through prayer and meditation, chooses to put God first in my life. I am also a wife, mother, grandmother, and floor scrubber who takes great delight in clean floors and made beds and a sense of order inside and outside. I love plants and I can hear them speak. I love life because I can hear and see and interact with and focus on the reality which supports that which we think of as life. I can see through things and have a sense of future and timing (not because I am an astrologer, but because I can flow in rhythm to the pulse of creation and all created things). My three near-death experiences changed me in substantial ways. It is my hope and prayer that people will come to accept all of me. I have no desire to hide or pretend or ignore. I am who I am. Although I have great respect for the divinatory arts and things "psychic, my life is God's life, and I am very happy. I hope you are too.

Perhaps this brief explanation will be helpful to you. Truly, my work as a researcher could not possibly be verified by clinical studies, as is now occurring, if I were superstition-bound and only interested in flaunting my ego to impress people. I am grateful my research has proved to be of significance worldwide, and that my more intimate moments in counseling/reading situations has proven to comfort and heal. This humbles me more than I can say.

Blessings, PMH


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