In a previous column (Aug. 13), I asked what happens to a person after he or she dies. I cited the traditional answer of the Christian religion that one’s soul goes either to heaven, hell or an in-between state called purgatory.
If the person is a native American, it’s believed that the soul goes to its “happy hunting ground.”
Atheists, agnostics and the more scientific-minded believe that the dead simply ceases to exist and vanishes into thin air, never to be heard from again.
Shakespeare likened death to an “undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns” (“Hamlet,” Act 3, Scene 1). Yet, in that same play, as well as in others, he wrote of ghosts appearing to the living.
Since biblical times, there have been numerous stories of the dead who made contact with the living, and vice versa. But only in the last century have there been various means of communication between the living and the dead.
Mediums and channels
Such communication has taken many forms, as reported in the book “Handbook to the Afterlife” by Pamela Rae Heath and Jon Klimo. There are, for example, spirit mediums or channels who are sensitive individuals able to receive messages from the dead.
There are people who have returned to life after having been declared dead for half an hour, or even after several days (near-death-experience or NDE). There are electronic voice phenomena (EVP) with recorded voices of the dead (some of whom bear real names of the known dead).
There are also physical manifestations of spirits of the dead. I have also come across a case of the dead sending messages through fax machine.
Who knows, there could soon be communication through the internet and social media, etc.
Michael Newton, Ph.D., an American hypnotherapist, in his two best-selling books, “Journey of the Soul” (1994) and “Destiny of the Soul” (2001) gave very detailed information on what happens when we die, “who meets us, where we go, and what we do as souls in the spirit world before choosing our next body for reincarnation.”
He obtained his information from numerous subjects put under deep hypnosis. He asked detailed questions about the afterlife which have never been asked by others.
If the answers of the hypnotized subjects were to be believed, it seems the spirit is very active in the afterlife. Such spirits continue to learn and to communicate with the living, or with those who are compatible with their vibrations and who are open channels.
Death is not a lonely or sad thing for the dying, although, at first, there could be great resistance to the passing from the physical to the spiritual realm. The dying are always met or welcomed by relatives who have died before them, or by spirit guides. There will always be someone to guide the dying person’s transition.
Those left behind
The answers given by the informants of this author are very consistent. It is only the living, those left behind, who are sad when a loved one passes away.
Few realize that to die in the physical world means to be born in the spirit world, that we cannot go to heaven without dying.
So, what do we do in the afterlife?
First, in the process of dying, we are given the chance to review in detail what we have done wrong and what we have done right while on earth.
We then decide whether to stay in the spirit world to learn lessons, or to go back into the world of the living to work out or make up for our past mistakes or meet our karmic debts. Some may choose to become spirit guides to others.
There are those who cannot accept their death, or those who are out for revenge, or those who are stubborn and refuse to see the light. These are spirits who haunt the living and are called ghosts, or earthbound spirits.
The time that spirits spend on earth after death may vary with each individual, depending on the level of consciousness. If highly advanced, the spirit goes at once to higher levels; if not so advanced, it may take some time.
But remember that time exists only in the physical world. It is not true that the spirit of the dead stays on earth for 40 days, then ascends to higher plane. Some spirits stay around for many years after death.
The next Basic ESP Seminar will be on Sept. 14-15, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tel. 8107245, 0998-9886292; email [email protected]