Holographic Universe

Holographic Universe






Acknowledgments xi

Introduction 1


1 The Brain as Hologram 1 1

2 The Cosmos as Hologram 32


3 The Holographic Model and Psychology 59

4 I Sing the Body Holographic 82

5 A Pocketful of Miracles 119

6 Seeing Hoiographically 162


7 Time Out of Mind 197

8 Traveling in the Superhologram 229

9 Return to the Dreamtime 286

Notes 303

Index 329


Writing is always a collaborative effort and many people have contrib-
uted to the production of this book in various ways. It is not possible to
name them all, but a few who deserve special mention include:

David Bohm, Ph.D., and Karl Pribram, Ph.D., who were generous
with both their time and their ideas, and without whose work this book
would not have been written.

Barbara Brennan, M.S., Larry Dossey, M.D., Brenda Dunne, Ph.D.,
Elizabeth W. Fenske, Ph.D., Gordon Globus, Jim Gordon, Stanislav
Graf, M.D., Francine Howland, M.D., Valerie Hunt, Ph.D., Robert Jahn,
Ph.D., Ronald Wong Jue, Ph.D., Mary Orser, F. David Peat, Ph.D.,
Elizabeth Rauscher, Ph.D., Beatrice Rich, Peter M. Rojcewicz, Ph.D.,
Abner Shimony, Ph.D., Bernie S. Siegel, M.D., T.M. Srinivasan, M.D.,
Whitley Strieber, Russell Targ, William A. Tiller, Ph.D., Montague
Ullman, M.D., Lyall Watson, Ph.D., Joel L. Whitton, M.D., Ph.D., Fred
Alan Wolf, Ph.D., and Richard Zarro, who were also all generous with
their time and ideas.

Carol Ann Dryer, for her friendship, insight, and support, and for
unending generosity when it comes to sharing her profound talent.

Kenneth Ring, Ph.D., for hours of fascinating conversation and for
introducing me to the writings of Henry Corbin.

Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., for taking the time to call me or drop me a
note whenever he came across any new leads on the holographic idea.

Terry Oleson, Ph.D., for his time and for kindly allowing me to use
his diagram of the “iittie man in the ear.”

Michael Grosso, Ph.D., for thought-provoking conversation and for
helping me track down several obscure reference works on miracles.

Brendan O’Regan of the Institute of Noetic Sciences, for his impor-


tant contributions to the subject of miracles and for helping me track
down information on the same.

My longtime friend Peter Brunjes, Ph.D., for using his university
connections to help me obtain several difficult-to-find reference works.

Judith Hooper, for loaning me numerous books and articles from her
own extensive collection of materials on the holographic idea.

Susan Cowles, M.S., of the Museum of Holography in New York for
helping me search out illustrations for the book.

Kerry Brace, for sharing his thoughts on the holographic idea as it
applies to Hindu thinking, and from whose writings I have borrowed the
idea of using the hologram of Princess Leia from the movie Star ‘ Wars to
open the book.

Marilyn Ferguson, the founder of the Brain/Mind Bulletin, who was
one of the first writers to recognize and write about the importance of the
holographic theory, and who also was generous with her time and
thought. The observant reader will notice that my summary of the view
of the universe that arises when one considers Bohm and Pribram’s
conclusions in tandem, at the end of Chapter Two, is actually just a slight
rephrasing of the words Ferguson uses to summarize the same sentiment
in her bestselling book The Aquarian Conspiracy. My inability to come
up with a different and better way to summarize the holographic idea
should be viewed as a testament to Ferguson’s clarity and succinctness as
a writer.

The staff at the American Society for Psychical Research for assist-
ance in tracking down references, resources, and the names of pertinent

Martha Visser and Sharon Schuyler for their help in researching the

Ross Wetzsteon of the Village Voice, who asked me to write the
article that started it all.

Claire Zion of Simon & Schuster, who first suggested that I write a
book on the holographic idea.

Lucy Kroll and Barbara Hogenson for being the best agents possible.

Lawrence P. Ashmead of HarperCollins for believing in the book, and
John Michel for his gentle and insightful editing.

If there is anyone that I have inadvertently left out, please forgive me.
To all, both named and unnamed, who have helped me give birth to this
book, my heartfelt thanks.


In the movie Star Wars, Luke Skywalker’s adventure begins when a
beam of light shoots out of the robot Artoo Detoo and projects a
miniature three-dimensional image of Princess Leia. Luke watches
spellbound as the ghostly sculpture of light begs for someone named
Obi-wan Kenobi to come to her assistance. The image is a hologram, a
three-dimensional picture made with the aid of a laser, and the
technological magic required to make such images is remarkable. But
what is even more astounding is that some scientists are beginning to
believe the universe itself is a kind of giant hologram, a splendidly
detailed illusion no more or less real than the image of Princess Leia that
starts Luke on his quest.

Put another way, there is evidence to suggest that our world and
everything in it — from snowflakes to maple trees to falling stars and
spuming electrons — are also only ghostly images, projections from a
level of reality so beyond our own it is literally beyond both space and

The main architects of this astonishing idea are two of the world’s
most eminent thinkers: University of London physicist David Bohm, a
protege of Einstein’s and one of the world’s most respected quantum
physicists; and Karl Pribram, a neurophysiologist at Stanford University
and author of the classic neuropsychological textbook Languages of the
Brain. Intriguingly, Bohm and Pribram arrived at their conclusions
independently and while working from two very different directions.
Bohm became convinced of the universe’s holographic nature


only after years of dissatisfaction with standard theories* inability to
explain all of the phenomena encountered in quantum physics. Pribram
became convinced because of the failure of standard theories of the
brain to explain various neurophysiological puzzles.

However, after arriving at their views, Bohm and Pribram quickly
realized the holographic model explained a number of other mysteries as
weli, including the apparent inability of any theory, no matter how
comprehensive, ever to account for all the phenomena encountered in
nature; the ability of individuals with hearing in only one ear to deter-
mine the direction from which a sound originates; and our ability to
recognize the face of someone we have not seen for many years even if
that person has changed considerably in the interim.

But the most staggering thing about the holographic model was that it
suddenly made sense of a wide range of phenomena so elusive they
generally have been categorized outside the province of scientific
understanding. These include telepathy, precognition, mystical feelings
of oneness with the universe, and even psychokinesis, or the ability of
the mind to move physical objects without anyone touching them.

Indeed, it quickly became apparent to the ever growing number of
scientists who came to embrace the holographic model that it helped
explain virtually all paranormal and mystical experiences, and in the last
half-dozen years or so it has continued to galvanize researchers and shed
light on an increasing number of previously inexplicable phenomena.
For example:

In 1980 University of Connecticut psychologist Dr. Kenneth fling
proposed that near-death experiences could be explained by the holo-
graphic model. Ring, who is president of the International Association
for Near-Death Studies, believes such experiences, as well as death
itself, are really nothing more than the shifting of a person’s con-
sciousness from one level of the hologram of reality to another.

i In 1985 Dr. Stanistav Grof, chief of psychiatric research at the Mary-
land Psychiatric Research Center and an assistant professor of psychi-
atry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, published a
book in which he concluded that existing neurophysiological models of
the brain are inadequate and only a holographic model can explain
such things as archetypal experiences, encounters with the collective
unconscious, and other unusual phenomena experienced during al-
tered states of consciousness.



At the 1987 annual meeting of the Association for the Study of
Dreams held in Washington, D.C, physicist Fred Alan Wolf delivered
a talk in which he asserted that the holographic model explains lucid
dreams (unusually vivid dreams in which the dreamer realizes he or
she is awake). Wolf believes such dreams are actually visits to parallel
realities, and the holographic model will ultimately allow us to develop
a “physics of consciousness” which will enable us to begin to explore
more fully these other-dimensional levels of existence.

? In his 1987 book entitled Synckronicity: The Bridge Between Matter
and Mind, Dr. F. David Peat, a physicist at Queen’s University in
Canada, asserted that synchronic! ties (coincidences that are so
unusual and so psyc ho logically meaningful they don’t seem to be the
result of chance alone) can be explained by the holographic model.
Peat believes such coincidences are actually “flaws in the fabric of
reality.” They reveal that our thought processes are much more inti-
mately connected to the physical world than has been hitherto sus-

These are only a few of the thought-provoking ideas that will be
explored in this book. Many of these ideas are extremely controversial.
Indeed, the holographic model itself is highly controversial and is by no
means accepted by a majority of scientists. Nonetheless, and as we shall
see, many important and impressive thinkers do support it and believe it
may be the most accurate picture of reality we have to date.

The holographic model has also received some dramatic experimental
support. In the field of neurophysiology numerous studies have
corroborated Pribram’s various predictions about the holographic nature
of memory and perception. Similarly, in 1982 a landmark experiment
performed by a research team led by physicist Alain Aspect at the
Institute of Theoretical and Applied Optics, in Paris, demonstrated that
the web of subatomic particles that compose our physical universe — the
very fabric of reality itself — possesses what appears to be an undeniable
“holographic” properly. These findings will also be discussed in the

In addition to the experimental evidence, several other things add
weight to the holographic hypothesis. Perhaps the most important
considerations are the character and achievements of the two men who
originated the idea. Early in their careers, and before the holographic
model was even a glimmer in their thoughts, each amassed accom-
plishments that would inspire most researchers to spend the rest of



their academic lives resting on their laurels. In the 1940s Pribram did
pioneering work on the limbic system, a region of the brain involved in
emotions and behavior. Bohm’s work in plasma physics in the 1950s is
also considered landmark.

But even more significantly, each has distinguished himself in another
way. It is a way even the most accomplished men and women can seldom
call their own, for it is measured not by mere intelligence or even talent
It is measured by courage, the tremendous resolve it takes to stand up for
one’s convictions even in the face of overwhelming opposition. While he
was a graduate student, Bohm did doctoral work with Robert
Oppenheimer. Later, in 1951, when Oppenheimer came under the
perilous scrutiny of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s Committee on
Un-American Activities, Bohm was called to testify against him and
refused. As a result he lost his job at Princeton and never again taught in
the United States, moving first to Brazil and then to London.

Early in his career Pribram faced a similar test of mettle. In 1935 a
Portuguese neurologist named Egas Moniz devised what he believed
was the perfect treatment for mental illness. He discovered that fay
boring into an individual’s skull with a surgical pick and severing the
prefrontal cortex from the rest of the brain he could make the most
troublesome patients docile. He called the procedure a prefrontal
lobotomy, and by the 1940s it had become such a popular medical
technique that Moniz was awarded the Nobel Prize. In the 1950s the
procedure’s popularity continued and it became a tool, like the McCarthy
hearings, to stamp out cultural undesirables. So accepted was its use for
this purpose that the surgeon Walter Freeman, the most outspoken
advocate for the procedure in the United States, wrote unashamedly that
lobotomies “made good American citizens” out of society’s misfits,
” schizophrenics, homosexuals, and radicals. ”

During this time Pribram came on the medical scene. However, unlike
many of his peers, Pribram felt it was wrong to tamper so recklessly with
the brain of another. So deep were his convictions that while working as
a young neurosurgeon in Jacksonville, Florida, he opposed the accepted
medical wisdom of the day and refused to allow any lobotomies to be
performed in the ward he was overseeing. Later at Yale he maintained
his controversial stance, and his then radical views very nearly lost him
his job.

Bohm and Pribram’s commitment to stand up for what they believe in,
regardless of the consequences, is also evident in the holographic model.
As we shall see, placing their not inconsiderable reputations

behind such a controversial idea is not the easiest path either could have
taken. Both their courage and the vision they have demonstrated in the
past again add weight to the holographic idea.

One final piece of evidence in favor of the holographic model is the
paranormal itself. Lhis is no small point, for in the last several decades a
remarkable body of evidence has accrued suggesting that our current
understanding of reality, the solid and comforting sticks-and-stones
picture of the world we all learned about in high-school science class, is
wrong. Because these findings cannot be explained by any of our
standard scientific models, science has in the main ignored them.
However, the volume of evidence has reached the point where this is no
longer a tenable situation.

To give just one example, in 1987, physicist Robert G. Jahn and
clinical psychologist Brenda J. Dunne, both at Princeton University,
announced that after a decade of rigorous experimentation by their
Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory, they had ac-
cumulated unequivocal evidence that the mind can psychically interact
with physical reality. More specifically, Jahn and Dunne found that
through mental concentration alone, human beings are able to affect the
way certain kinds of machines operate. This is an astounding finding
and one that cannot be accounted for in terms of our standard picture of

It can be explained by the holographic view, however. Conversely,
because paranormal events cannot be accounted for by our current
scientific understandings, they cry out for a new way of looking at the
universe, a new scientific paradigm. In addition to showing how the
holographic model can account for the paranormal, the book will also
examine how mounting evidence in favor of the paranormal in turn
actually seems to necessitate the existence of such a model.

The fact that the paranormal cannot be explained by our current
scientific worldview is only one of the reasons it remains so controver-
sial. Another is that psychic functioning is often very difficult to pin
down in the lab, and this has caused many scientists to conclude it
therefore does not exist. This apparent elusiveness will also be dis-
cussed in the book.

An even more important reason is that contrary to what many of us
have come to believe, science is not prejudice -free. I first learned this a
number of years ago when I asked a well-known physicist what he
thought about a particular parapsychological experiment. The physicist
{who had a reputation for being skeptical of the paranormal)



looked at me and with great authority said the results revealed “no
evidence of any psychic functioning whatsoever. ” I had not yet seen the
results, but because I respected the physicist’s intelligence and
reputation, I accepted his judgment without question. Later when I
examined the results for myself, I was stunned to discover the experi-
ment had produced very striking evidence of psychic ability. I realized
then that even well-known scientists can possess biases and blind spots.

Unfortunately this is a situation that occurs often in the investigation
of the paranormal. In a recent article in American Psychologist, Yale
psychologist Irvin L. Child examined how a well-known series of ESP
dream experiments conducted at the Maimonides Medical Center in
Brooklyn, New York, had been treated by the scientific establishment.
Despite the dramatic evidence supportive of ESP uncovered by the
experimenters, Child found their work had been almost completely
ignored by the scientific community. Even more distressing, in the
handful of scientific publications that had bothered to comment on the
experiments, he found the research had been so “severely distorted” its
importance was completely obscured. 1

How is this possible? One reason is science is not always as objective as
we would like to believe. We view scientists with a bit of awe, and when
they tell us something we are convinced it must be true. We forget they
are only human and subject to the same religious, philosophical, and
cultural prejudices as the rest of us. This is unfortunate, for as this book
will show, there is a great deal of evidence that the universe
encompasses considerably more than our current worldview allows.

But why is science so resistant to the paranormal in particular? This is
a more difficult question. In commenting on the resistance he experi-
enced to his own unorthodox views on health, Yale surgeon Dr. Bernie S.
Siegel, author of the best-selling book Love, Medicine, and Miracles,
asserts that it is because people are addicted to their beliefs. Siegel says
this is why when you try to change someone’s belief they act like an

There seems to be a good deal of truth to Siegel’s observation, which
perhaps is why so many of civilization’s greatest insights and advances
have at first been greeted with such passionate denial. We are addicted
to our beliefs and we do act like addicts when someone tries to wrest
from us the powerful opium of our dogmas. And since West-

ern science has devoted several centuries to not believing in the para-
normal, it is not going to surrender its addiction lightly.

I am lucky. I have always known there was more to the world than is
generally accepted. I grew up in a psychic family, and from an early age
I experienced firsthand many of the phenomena that will be talked about
in this book. Occasionally, and when it is relevant to the topic being
discussed, 1 will relate a few of my own experiences. Although they can
only be viewed as anecedotal evidence, for me they have provided the
most compelling proof of all that we live in a universe we are only just
beginning to fathom, and I include them because of the insight they

Lastly, because the holographic concept is still very much an idea in
the making and is a mosaic of many different points of view and pieces
of evidence, some have argued that it should not be called a model or
theory until these disparate points of view are integrated into a more
unified whole. As a result, some researchers refer to the ideas as the
holographic paradigm. Others prefer holographic analogy, holographic
metaphor, and so on. In this book and for the sake of diversity I have
employed all of these expressions, including holographic model and
holographic theory, but do not mean to imply that the holographic idea
has achieved the status of a model or theory in the strictest sense of these

In this same vein it is important to note that although Bohm and
Pribram are the originators of the holographic idea, they do not embrace
all of the views and conclusions put forward in this book. Rather, this is a
book that looks not only at Bohm and Pribram’s theories, but at the ideas
and conclusions of numerous researchers who have been influenced by
the holographic model and who have interpreted it in their own
sometimes controversial ways.

Throughout this book I also discuss various ideas from quantum
physics, the branch of physics that studies subatomic particles (electrons,
protons, and so on). Because I have written on this subject before, I am
aware that some people are intimidated by the term quantum physics and
are afraid they will not be able to understand its concepts. My
experience has taught me that even those who do not know any
mathematics are able to understand the kinds of ideas from physics that
are touched upon in this book. You do not even need a background in
science. All you need is an open mind if you happen to glance at a page
and see a scientific term you do not know. I have kept


such terms down to a minimum, and on those occasions when it was
necessary to use one, I always explain it before continuing on with the

So don’t be afraid. Once you have overcome your “fear of the
water,” I think you’ll find swimming among quantum physics’ strange
and fascinating ideas much easier than you thought. I think you’ll also
find that pondering a few of these ideas might even change the way
you look at the world. In fact, it is my hope that the ideas contained
in the following chapters will change the way you look at the world.
It is with this humble desire that I offer this book.



Sit down before foct like a little child, and be pre-
pared to give up every preconceived notion, follow
humbly wherever and to whatever abyss Nature
leads, or you shall learn nothing.

— T. H. Huxley

The Brain as Hologram

It isn’t that the world of appearances is wrong; it isn’t that there
aren’t objects out there, at one level of reality. It’s that if you
penetrate through and look at the universe with a holographic
system, you arrive at a different view, a different reality. And that
other reality can explain things that have hitherto remained
inexplicable scientifically: paranormal phenomena,

synchronicities, the apparently meaningful coincidence of events.

— Karl Pribram

in an interview in Psychology Today

The puzzle that first started Pribram on the road to formulating his
holographic model was the question of how and where memories are
stored in the brain. In the early 1 940s, when he first became interested in
this mystery, it was generally believed that memories were localized in
the brain. Each memory a person had, such as the memory of the last
time you saw your grandmother, or the memory of the fragrance of a
gardenia you sniffed when you were sixteen, was believed to have a
specific location somewhere in the brain cells. Such memory traces
were called engrains, and although no one knew what an engram was
made of — whether it was a neuron or perhaps even a special kind of
molecule — most scientists were confident it was only a matter of time
before one would be found. There were reasons for this confidence.
Research conducted by Ca-



The Brain as Hologram

nadian neurosurgeon Wilder Penfield in the 1 920s had offered convinc-
ing evidence that specific memories did have specific locations in the
brain. One of the most unusual features of the brain is that the object
itself doesn’t sense pain directly. As long as the scalp and skull have
been deadened with a local anesthetic, surgery can be performed on the
brain of a fully conscious person without causing any pain.

In a series of landmark experiments, Penfield used this fact to his
advantage. While operating on the brains of epileptics, he would elec-
trically stimulate various areas of their brain cells. To his amazement he
found that when he stimulated the temporal lobes (the region of the brain
behind the temples) of one of his fully conscious patients, they
reexperienced memories of past episodes from their lives in vivid detail.
One man suddenly relived a conversation he had had with friends in
South Africa; a boy heard his mother talking on the telephone and after
several touches from Penfield’s electrode was able to repeat her entire
conversation; a woman found herself in her kitchen and could hear her
son playing outside. Even when Penfield tried to mislead his patients by
telling them he was stimulating a different area when he was not, he
found that when he touched the same spot it always evoked the same

In his book The Mystery of the Mind, published in 1975, just shortly
before his death, he wrote, “It was evident at once that these were not
dreams. They were electrical activations of the sequential record of
consciousness, a record that had been laid down during the patient’s
earlier experience. The patient ‘re-lived’ all that he had been aware of in
that earlier period of time as in a moving-picture ‘flashback.’ |M

From his research Penfield concluded that everything we have ever
experienced is recorded in our brain, from every stranger’s face we have
glanced at in a crowd to every spider web we gazed at as a child. He
reasoned that this was why memories of so many insignificant events
kept cropping up in his sampling. If our memory is a complete record of
even the most mundane of our day-to-day experiences, it is reasonable to
assume that dipping randomly into such a massive chronicle would
produce a good deal of trifling information.

As a young neurosurgery resident, Pribram had no reason to doubt
Penfield’s engram theory. But then something happened that was to
change his thinking forever. In 1946 he went to work with the great
neuropsychologist Karl Lashley at the Yerkes Laboratory of Primate
Biology, then in Orange Park, Florida. For over thirty years Lashley had
been involved in his own ongoing search for the elusive mech-

anisms responsible for memory, and there Pribram was able to witness
the fruits of Lashley’s labors firsthand. What was startling was that not
only had Lashley failed to produce any evidence of the en-gram, but his
research actually seemed to pull the rug out from under all of Penfield’s

What Lashley had done was to train rats to perform a variety of tasks,
such as run a maze. Then he surgically removed various portions of their
brains and retested them. His aim was literally to cut out the area of the
rats’ brains containing the memory of their maze-running ability. To his
surprise he found that no matter what portion of their brains he cut out,
he could not eradicate their memories. Often the rats’ motor skills were
impaired and they stumbled clumsily through the mazes, but even with
massive portions of their brains removed, their memories remained
stubbornly intact.

For Pribram these were incredible findings. If memories possessed
specific locations in the brain in the same way that books possess
specific locations on library shelves, why didn’t Lashley’s surgical
plunderings have any effect on them? For Pribram the only answer
seemed to be that memories were not localized at specific brain sites, but
were somehow spread out or distributed throughout the brain as a whole.
The problem was that he knew of no mechanism or process that could
account for such a state of affairs.

Lashley was even less certain and later wrote, ‘I sometimes feel, in
reviewing the evidence on the localization of the memory trace, that the
necessary conclusion is that learning just is not possible at all.
Nevertheless, in spite of such evidence against it, learning does some-
times occur.”” In 1948 Pribram was offered a position at Yale, and
before leaving he helped write up thirty years of Lashley’s monumental

The Breakthrough

At Yale, Pribram continued to ponder the idea that memories were
distributed throughout the brain, and the more he thought about it the
more convinced he became. After all, patients who had had portions of
their brains removed for medical reasons never suffered the loss of
specific memories. Removal of a large section of the brain might cause a
patient’s memory to become generally hazy, but no one ever came



The Brain as Hologram


out of surgery with any selective memory loss. Similarly, individuals
who had received head injuries in car collisions and other accidents
never forgot half of their family, or half of a novel they had read. Even
removal of sections of the temporal lobes, the area of the brain that had
figured so prominently in Penfield’s research, didn’t create any gaps in a
person’s memories.

Pribram’s thinking was further solidified by his and other researchers’
inability to duplicate Penfield’s findings when stimulating brains other
than those of epileptics. Even Penfield himself was unable to duplicate
his results in nonepileptic patients.

Despite the growing evidence that memories were distributed, Pri-
bram was still at a loss as to how the brain might accomplish such a
seemingly magical feat. Then in the mid-1960s an article he read in
Scientific American describing the first construction of a hologram hit
him like a thunderbolt. Not only was the concept of holography dazzling,
but it provided a solution to the puzzle with which he had been

To understand why Pribram was so excited, it is necessary to under-
stand a little more about holograms. One of the things that makes
holography possible is a phenomenon known as interference. Interfer-
ence is the crisscrossing pattern that occurs when two or more waves,
such as waves of water, ripple through each other. For example, if you
drop a pebble into a pond, it will produce a series of concentric waves
that expands outward. If you drop two pebbles into a pond, you will get
two sets of waves that expand and pass through one another. The
complex arrangement of crests and troughs that results from such
collisions is known as an interference pattern.

Any wavelike phenomena can create an interference pattern, includ-
ing light and radio waves. Because laser light is an extremely pure,
coherent form of light, it is especially good at creating interference
patterns. It provides, in essence, the perfect pebble and the perfect pond.
As a result, it wasn’t until the invention of the laser that holograms, as
we know them today, became possible.

A hologram is produced when a single laser light is split into two
separate beams. The first beam is bounced off the object to be photo-
graphed. Then the second beam is allowed to collide with the reflected
tight of the first. When this happens they create an interference pattern
which is then recorded on a piece of film (see fig, 1).

To the naked eye the image on the film looks nothing at all like the
object photographed. In fact, it even looks a little like the concentric
rings that form when a handful of pebbles is tossed into a pond (see fig.
2). But as soon as another laser beam (or in some instances just a bright
light source) is shined through the film, a three-dimensional image of
the original object reappears. The three-dimen3ionahty of such images
is often eerily convincing. You can actually walk around a holographic
projection and view it from different angles as you would a real object.
However, if you reach out and try to touch it, your hand will waft right
through it and you will discover there is really nothing there (see fig. 3).

-.. IIV/H

beam wttm*

Figure 1 . A hologram is produced when a single laser light is split into two
separate beaniE. Tbe first beam is bounced off the object to be photographed, in
this case an apple. Then the second beam is allowed to collide with the reflected
light of the first, and the resulting interference pattern is recorded on film.



The Brain as Hologram


Three-dimensionality is not the only remarkable aspect of holo-
grams. If a piece of holographic film containing the image of an apple
is cut in half and then illuminated by a laser, each half will still be
found to contain the entire image of the apple! Even if the halves are
divided again and then again, an entire apple can still be reconstructed
from each small portion of the film {although the images will get
hazier as the portions get smaller). Unlike normal photographs, every

FIguhe2. A piece of holographic film containing an encoded image. To the naked
eye the image on the film looks nothing like the object photographed and is
composed of irregular ripples known as interference patterns. However, when
the film is illuminated with another laser, a three-dimensional image of the original
object reappears.

Figure 3. The three-dimensionality of a hologram is often so eerily convincing
that you can actually walk around it and view it from different angles. But if you
reach out and try to touch it, your hand will waft right through it [“Celeste
Undressed.” Holographic stereogram by Peter Claudius, 1978. Photograph by
Brad Cantos, collection of The Museum of Holography. Used by permission]

small fragment of a piece of holographic film contains all the informa-
tion recorded in the whole (see fig. 4).*

This was precisely the feature that got Pribram so excited, for it
offered at last a way of understanding how memories could be dis-
tributed rather than localized in the brain. If it was possible for every
portion of a piece of holographic film to contain all the information
necessary to create a whole image, then it seemed equally possible for
every part of the brain to contain all of the information necessary to
recall a whole memory.

“It should be noted that this astounding trait is common only to pieces of holographic film
whose images are invisible to the naked eye. If you buy a piece of holographic film (or an
object containing a piece of holographic film) in a store and can see a three-dimensional
image in it without any special kind of illumination, do not cut it in half. You will only end n P
with pieces of the original image.



The Brain as Hologram


Figure 4. Uniike normal photographs, every portion of a piece of holographic film
contains all of the information of the whole. Thus if a holographic plate is broken
into fragments, each piece can still be used to reconstruct the entire image.

Vision Also Is Holographic

Memory is not the only thing the brain may process holographically.
Another of Lashley’s discoveries was that the visual centers of the brain
were also surprisingly resistant to surgical excision. Even after
removing as much as 90 percent of a rat’s visual cortex {the part of the
brain that receives and interprets what the eye sees), he found it could
still perform tasks requiring complex visual skills. Similarly, research
conducted by Pribram revealed that as much as 98 percent

of a cat’s optic nerves can be severed without seriously impairing its
ability to perform complex visual tasks. 3

Such a situation was tantamount to believing that a movie audience
could still enjoy a motion picture even after 90 percent of the movie
screen was missing, and his experiments presented once again a serious
challenge to the standard understanding of how vision works. According
to the leading theory of the day, there was a one-to-one correspondence
between the image the eye sees and the way that image is represented in
the brain. In other words, when we look at a square, it was believed the
electrical activity in our visual cortex also possesses the form of a square
(see fig. 5).

Although findings such as Lashley’s seemed to deal a deathblow to
this idea, Pribram was not satisfied. While he was at Yale he devised a
series of experiments to resolve the matter and spent the next seven
years carefully measuring the electrical activity in the brains of mon-
keys while they performed various visual tasks. He discovered that not
only did no such one-to-one correspondence exist, but there wasn’t even
a discernible pattern to the sequence in which the electrodes fired. He
wrote of his findings, “These experimental results are incompatible with
a view that a photographic-like image becomes projected onto the
cortical surface.” 4

Figure 5. Vision theorists once believed there was a one-to-one correspondence
between an image the eye sees and how that image is represented in the brain.
Pribram discovered this is not true.



The Brain as Hologram


Once again the resistance the visual cortex displayed toward surgical
excision suggested that, like memory, vision was also distributed, and
after Pribram became aware of holography he began to wonder if it, too,
was holographic. The “whole in every part” nature of a hologram
certainly seemed to explain how so much of the visual cortex could be
removed without affecting the ability to perform visual tasks. If the brain
was processing images by employing some kind of internal hologram,
even a very small piece of the hologram could still reconstruct the whole
of what the eyes were seeing. It also explained the lack of any one-to-one
correspondence between the external world and the brain’s electrical
activity. Again, if the brain was using holographic principles to process
visual information, there would be no more one-to-one correspondence
between electrical activity and images seen than there was between the
meaningless swirl of interference patterns on a piece of holographic film
and the image the film encoded.

The only question that remained was what wavelike phenomenon the
brain might be using to create such internal holograms. As soon as
Pribram considered the question he thought of a possible answer. It was
known that the electrical communications that take place between the
brain’s nerve cells, or neurons, do not occur alone. Neurons possess
branches like little trees, and when an electrical message reaches the end
of one of these branches it radiates outward as does the ripple in a pond.
Because neurons are packed together so densely, these expanding
ripples of electricity — also a wavelike phenomenon — are constantly
crisscrossing one another. When Pribram remembered this he realized
that they were most assuredly creating an almost endless and
kaleidoscopic array of interference patterns, and these in turn might be
what give the brain its holographic properties. “The hologram was there
all the time in the wave-front nature of brain-cell connectivity,”
observed Pribram. “We simply hadn’t had the wit to realize it,” 5

Other Puzzles Explained by the
Holographic Brain Model

Pribram published his first article on the possible holographic nature of
the brain in 1966, and continued to expand and refine his ideas

during the next several years. As he did, and as other researchers became
aware of his theory, it was quickly realized that the distributed nature of
memory and vision is not the only neurophysiologies! puzzle the
holographic model can explain.


Holography also explains how our brains can store so many memories
in so little space. The brilliant Hungarian-born physicist and math-
ematician John von Neumann once calculated that over the course of the
average human lifetime, the brain stores something on the order of 2.8 X
10 20 (280,000,000,000,000,000,000) bits of information. This is a
staggering amount of information, and brain researchers have long
struggled to come up with a mechanism that explains such a vast ca-

Interestingly, holograms also possess a fantastic capacity for infor-
mation storage. By changing the angle at which the two lasers strike a
piece of photographic film, it is possible to record many different images
on the same surface. Any image thus recorded can be retrieved simply
by illuminating the film with a laser beam possessing the same angle as
the original two beams. By employing this method researchers have
calculated that a one-inch-square of film can store the same amount of
information contained in fifty Bibles! 6


Pieces of holographic film containing multiple images, such as those
described above, also provide a way of understanding our ability to both
recall and forget. When such a piece of film is held in a laser beam and
tilted back and forth, the various images it contains appear and disappear
in a glittering stream. It has been suggested that our ability to remember
is analogous to shining a laser beam on such a piece of film and calling
up a particular image. Similarly, when we are unable to recall something,
this may be equivalent to shining various beams on a piece of
multiple-image film, but failing to find the right angle to call up the
image/memory for which we are searching.


In Proust’s Swann ‘s Way a sip of tea and a bite of a small
scallop-shaped cake known as a petite madeleine cause the narrator to



The Brain as Hologram


himself suddenly flooded with memories from his past At first he is
puzzled, but then, slowly, after much effort on his part, he remembers
that his aunt used to give him tea and madeleines when he was a little
boy, and it is this association that has stirred his memory. We have all
had similar experiences — a whiff of a particular food being prepared, or
a glimpse of some long-forgotten object — that suddenly evoke some
scene out of our past

The holographic idea offers a further analogy for the associative
tendencies of memory. This is illustrated by yet another kind of holo-
graphic recording technique. First, the light of a single laser beam is
bounced off two objects simultaneously, say an easy chair and a smok-
ing pipe. The light bounced off each object is then allowed to collide,
and the resulting interference pattern is captured on film. Then, when-
ever the easy chair is illuminated with laser light and the light that
reflects off the easy chair is passed through the film, a three-dimensional
image of the pipe will appear. Conversely, whenever the same is done
with the pipe, a hologram of the easy chair appears. So, if our brains
function holographically, a similar process may be responsible for the
way certain objects evoke specific memories from our past.

to the first, is bathed in laser light and the light is bounced off the mirror
and onto the film after it has been developed, a bright point of light will
appear on the film. The brighter and sharper the point of light, the
greater the degree of similarity between the first and second objects. If
the two objects are completely dissimilar, no point of light will appear.
By placing a light-sensitive photocell behind the holographic film, one
can actually use the setup as a mechanical recognition system. 7

A similar technique known as interference holography may also
explain how we can recognize both the familiar and unfamiliar features
of an image such as the face of someone we have not seen for many
years. In this technique an object is viewed through a piece of
holographic film containing its image. When this is done, any feature of
the object that has changed since its image was originally recorded will
reflect light differently. An individual looking through the film is
instantly aware of both how the object has changed and how it has
remained the same. The technique is so sensitive that even the pressure
of a finger on a block of granite shows up immediately, and the process
has been found to have practical applications in the materials-testing
industry. 8


At first glance our ability to recognize familiar things may not seem
so unusual, but brain researchers have long realized it is quite a complex
ability. For example, the absolute certainty we feel when we spot a
familiar face in a crowd of several hundred people is not just a
subjective emotion, but appears to be caused by an extremely fast and
reliable form of information processing in our brain.

In a 1970 artiele in the British science magazine Nature, physicist
Pieter van Heerden proposed that a type of holography known as
recognition holography offers a way of understanding this ability.* In
recognition holography a holographic image of an object is recorded in
the usual manner, save that the laser beam is bounced off a special kind
of mirror known as a. focusing mirror before it is allowed to strike the
unexposed film. If a second object, similar but not identical

“Van Heerden, a researcher at the Polaroid Research Laboratories m Cambridge, Massachu-
setts, actually proposed his own version of a hoiogrsphic theory of memory in 1963, buthia
work went relatively unnoticed.


In 1972, Harvard vision researchers Daniel Pollen and Michael
Trac-tenberg proposed that the holographic brain theory may explain
why some people possess photographic memories {also known as
eidetic memories). Typically, individuals with photographic memories
will spend a few moments scanning the scene they wish to memorize.
When they want to see the scene again, they “project” a mental image of
it, either with their eyes closed or as they gaze at a blank wall or screen.
In a study of one such individual, a Harvard art history professor named
Elizabeth, Pollen and Tractenberg found that the mental images she
projected were so real to her that when she read an image of a page from
Goethe’s Faust her eyes moved as if she were reading a real page.

Noting that the image stored in a fragment of holographic film gets
hazier as the fragment gets smaller, Pollen and Tractenberg suggest that
perhaps such individuals have more vivid memories because they
somehow have access to very targe regions of their memory holo-



The Brain as Hologram


grams. Conversely, perhaps most of us have memories that are much
less vivid because our access is limited to smaller regions of the memory
holograms. 8


Pribram believes the holographic model also sheds light on our ability
to transfer learned skills from one part of our body to another. As you sit
reading this book, take a moment and trace your first name in the air with
your left elbow. You will probably discover that this is a relatively easy
thing to do, and yet in all likelihood it is something you have never done
before. It may not seem a surprising ability to you, but in the classic view
that various areas of the brain {such as the area controlling the
movements of the elbow) are “hard-wired,” or able to perform tasks only
after repetitive learning has caused the proper neural connections to
become established between brain cells, this is something of a puzzle.
Pribram points out that the problem becomes much more tractable if the
brain were to convert all of its memories, including memories of learned
abilities such as writing, into a language of interfering wave forms. Such
a brain would be much more flexible and could shift its stored
information around with the same ease that a skilled pianist transposes a
song from one musical key to another.

This same flexibility may explain how we are able to recognize a
familiar face regardless of the angle from which we are viewing it Again,
once the brain has memorized a face (or any other object or scene) and
converted it into a language of wave forms, it can, in a sense, tumble this
interna] hologram around and examine it from any perspective it wants.


To most of us it is obvious that our feelings of love, hunger, anger, and
so on, are internal realities, and the sound of an orchestra playing, the
heat of the sun, the smell of bread baking, and so on, are external
realities. But it is not so clear how our brains enable us to distinguish
between the two. For example, Pribram points out that when we look at a
person, the image of the person is really on the surface of our

retinas. Yet we do not perceive the person as being on our retinas. We
perceive them as being in the “world-out-there.” Similarly, when we
stub our toe we experience the pain in our toe. But the pain is not really in
our toe. It is actually a neurophysiological process taking place
somewhere in our brain. How then is our brain abie to take the multitude
of neurophysiological processes that manifest as our experience, all of
which are internal, and fool us into thinking that some are internal and
some are located beyond the confines of our gray matter?

Creating the illusion that things are located where they are not is the
quintessential feature of a hologram. As mentioned, if you look at a
hologram it seems to have extension in space, but if you pass your hand
through it you will discover there is nothing there. Despite what your
senses tell you, no instrument will pick up the presence of any abnormal
energy or substance where the hologram appears to be hovering. This is
because a hologram is a virtual image, an image that appears to be where
it is not, and possesses no more extension in space than does the
three-dimensional image you see of yourself when you look in a mirror.
Just as the image in the mirror is located in the silvering on the mirror’s
back surface, the actual location of a hologram is always in the
photographic emulsion on the surface of the film recording it.

Further evidence that the brain is able to Tool us into thinking that
inner processes are located outside the body comes from the Nobel
Prize-winning physiologist Georg von Bekesy. In a series of experi-
ments conducted in the late 1 960s Bekesy placed vibrators on the knees
of blindfolded test subjects. Then he varied the rates at which the
instruments vibrated. By doing so he discovered that he could make his
test subjects experience the sensation that a point source of vibration
was jumping from one knee to the other. He found that he could even
make his subjects feel the point source of vibration in the space between
their knees. In short, he demonstrated that humans have the ability to
seemingly experience sensation in spatial locations where they have
absolutely no sense receptors. 10

Pribram believes that Bekesy’s work is compatible with the holo-
graphic view and sheds additional light on how interfering wave
fronts — or in Bekesy’s case, interfering sources of physical vibra-
tion — enable the brain to localize some of its experiences beyond the
physical boundaries of the body. He feels this process might also explain
the phantom limb phenomenon, or the sensation experienced



The Brain as Hologram


by some amputees that a missing arm or leg is still present. Such
individuals often feel eerily realistic cramps, pains, and tinglings in
these phantom appendages, but maybe what they are experiencing is the
holographic memory of the limb that is still recorded in the interference
patterns in their brains.

Experimental Support for the Holographic Brain

For Pribram the many similarities between brains and holograms were
tantalizing, but he knew his theory didn’t mean anything unless it was
backed up by more solid evidence. One researcher who provided such
evidence was Indiana University biologist Paul Pietsch. Intrigu-ingly,
Pietsch began as an ardent disbeliever in Pribram’s theory. He was
especially skeptical of Pribram’s claim that memories do not possess any
specific location in the brain.

To prove Pribram wrong, Pietsch devised a series of experiments, and
as the test subjects of his experiments he chose salamanders. In previous
studies he had discovered that he could remove the brain of a
salamander without killing it, and although it remained in a stupor as
long as its brain was missing, its behavior completely returned to
normal as soon as its brain was restored.

Pietsch reasoned that if a salamander’s feeding behavior is not
confined to any specific location in the brain, then it should not matter
how its brain is positioned in its head. If it did matter, Pribram’s theory
would be disproven. He then flip-flopped the left and right hemispheres
of a salamander’s brain, but to his dismay, as soon as it recovered, the
salamander quickly resumed normal feeding.

He took another salamander and turned its brain upside down. When
it recovered it, too, fed normally. Growing increasingly frustrated, he
decided to resort to more drastic measures. In a series of over 700
operations he sliced, flipped, shuffled, subtracted, and even minced the
brains of his hapless subjects, but always when he replaced what was
left of their brains, their behavior returned to normal. 11

These findings and others turned Pietsch into a believer and attracted
enough attention that his research became the subject of a segment on
the television show 60 Minutes. He writes about this experience as well
as giving detailed accounts of his experiments in his insightful book

The Mathematical Language of the Hologram

While the theories that enabled the development of the hologram were
first formulated in 1 947 by Dennis Gabor (who later won a Nobel Prize
for his efforts), in the late 1960s and early 1970s Pribram’s theory
received even more persuasive experimental support. When Gabor first
conceived the idea of holography he wasn’t thinking about lasers. His
goal was to improve the electron microscope, then a primitive and
imperfect device. His approach was a mathematical one, and the math-
ematics he used was a type of calculus invented by an
eighteenth-century Frenchman named Jean E. J. Fourier.

Roughly speaking what Fourier developed was a mathematical way
of converting any pattern, no matter how complex, into a language of
simple waves. He also showed how these wave forms could be con-
verted back into the original pattern. In other words, just as a television
camera converts an image into electromagnetic frequencies and a
television set converts those frequencies back into the original image,
Fourier showed how a similar process could be achieved math-
ematically. The equations he developed to convert images into wave
forms and back again are known as Fourier transforms.

Fourier transforms enabled Gabor to convert a picture of an object
into the blur of interference patterns on a piece of holographic film.
They also enabled him to devise a way of converting those interference
patterns back into an image of the original object. In fact the special
whole in every part of a hologram is one of the by-products that occurs
when an image or pattern is translated into the Fourier language of wave

Throughout the late 1 960s and early 1 970s various researchers con-
tacted Pribram and told him they had uncovered evidence that the visual
system worked as a kind of frequency analyzer. Since frequency is a
measure of the number of oscillations a wave undergoes per second, this
strongly suggested that the brain might be functioning as a hologram

But it wasn’t until 1979 that Berkeley neurophysiologists Russell and
Karen DeValois made the discovery that settled the matter. Research in
the 1 960s had shown that each brain cell in the visual cortex is geared to
respond to a different pattern — some brain cells fire when the eyes see a
horizontal line, others fire when the eyes see a vertical line, and so on.
As a result, many researchers concluded that the brain takes input from
these highly specialized cells called feature detec-



The Brain as Hologram

tors, and somehow fits them together to provide us with our visual
perceptions of the world.

Despite the popularity of this view, the DeValoises felt it was only a
partial truth. To test their assumption they used Fourier’s equations to
convert plaid and checkerboard patterns into simple wave forms. Then
they tested to see how the brain cells in the visual cortex responded to
these new wave-form images. What they found was that the brain cells
responded not to the original patterns, but to the Fourier translations of
the patterns. Only one conclusion could be drawn. The brain was using
Fourier mathematics — the same mathematics holography employed — to
convert visual images into the Fourier language of wave forms. 12

The DeValoises’ discovery was subsequently confirmed by numerous
other laboratories around the world, and although it did not provide
absolute proof the brain was a hologram, it supplied enough evidence to
convince Pribram his theory was correct. Spurred on by the idea that the
visual cortex was responding not to patterns but to the frequencies of
various wave forms, he began to reassess the role frequency played in
the other senses.

It didn’t take long for him to realize that the importance of this role had
perhaps been overlooked by twentieth-century scientists. Over a century
before the DeValoises’ discovery, the German physiologist and physicist
Hermann von Helmholtz had shown that the ear was a frequency
analyzer. More recent research revealed that our sense of smell seems to
be based on what are called osmic frequencies. Bekesy’s work had
clearly demonstrated that our skin is sensitive to frequencies of vibration,
and he even produced some evidence that taste may involve frequency
analysis. Interestingly, Bekesy also discovered that the mathematical
equations that enabled him to predict how his subjects would respond to
various frequencies of vibration were also of the Fourier genre.

The Dancer as Wave Form

But perhaps the most startling finding Pribram uncovered was Russian
scientist Nikolai Bernstein’s discovery that even our physical
movements may be encoded in our brains in a language of Fourier wave
forms. In the 1930s Bernstein dressed people in black leotards

Figure 6. Russian researcher Nikolai Bernstein painted white dots on dancers and
filmed them dancing against a black background. When he converted their move-
ments into a language of wave forms, he discovered they could be analyzed using
Fourier mathematics, the same mathematics Gabor used to invent the hologram.

and painted white dots on their elbows, knees, and other joints. Then he
placed them against black backgrounds and took movies of them doing
various physical activities such as dancing, walking, jumping,
hammering, and typing.

When he developed the film, only the white dots appeared, moving up
and down and across the screen in various complex and flowing
movements (see fig. 6). To quantify his findings he Fourier-analyzed the
various lines the dots traced out and converted them into a language of
wave forms. To his surprise, he discovered the wave forms contained
hidden patterns that allowed him to predict his subjects’ next movement
to within a fraction of an inch.

When Pribram encountered Bernstein’s work he immediately recog-
nized its implications. Maybe the reason hidden patterns surfaced after
Bernstein Fourier-analyzed his subject’s movements was because that
was how movements are stored in the brain. This was an exciting
possibility, for if the brain analyzed movements by breaking them down
into their frequency components, it explained the rapidity with which we
learn many complex physical tasks. For instance, we do not learn to ride
a bicycle by painstakingly memorizing every tiny feature of the process.
We learn fay grasping the whole flowing movement. The fluid
wholeness that typifies how we learn so many physical



The Brain as Hologram


activities is difficult to explain if our brains are storing information in a
bit-by -bit manner. But it becomes much easier to understand if the brain
is Fourier-analyzing such tasks and absorbing them as a whole.

The Reaction of the Scientific Community

Despite such evidence, Pribram’s holographic model remains extremely
controversial. Part of the problem is that there are many popular theories
of how the brain works and there is evidence to support them all. Some
researchers believe the distributed nature of memory can be explained
by the ebb and flow of various brain chemicals. Others hold that
electrical fluctuations among large groups of neurons can account for
memory and learning. Each school of thought has its ardent supporters,
and it is probably safe to say that most scientists remain unpersuaded by
Pribram’s arguments. For example, neuropsychologist Frank Wood of
the Bowman Gray School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North
Carolina, feels that “there are precious few experimental findings for
which holography is the necessary, or even preferable, explanation.” 13
Pribram is puzzled by statements such as Wood’s and counters by noting
that he currently has a book in press with well over 500 references to
such data.

Other researchers agree with Pribram. Dr. Larry Dossey, former chief
of staff at Medical City Dallas Hospital, admits that Pribram’s theory
challenges many long-held assumptions about the brain, but points out
that “many specialists in brain function are attracted to the idea, if for no
other reason than the glaring inadequacies of the present orthodox

ii 14


Neurologist Richard Restak, author of the PBS series The Brain,
shares Dossey’s opinion. He notes that in spite of overwhelming evi-
dence that human abilities are holistically dispersed throughout the
brain, most researchers continue to cling to the idea that function can be
located in the brain in the same way that cities can be located on a map.
Restak believes that theories based on this premise are not only
“oversimplistie,” but actually function as “conceptual straitjackets” that
keep us from recognizing the brain’s true complexities. 16 He feels that “a
hologram is not only possible but, at this moment, represents probably
our best ‘model’ for brain functioning.”

Pribram Encounters Bohm

As for Pribram, by the 1970s enough evidence had accumulated to
convince him his theory was correct. In addition, he had taken his ideas
into the laboratory and discovered that single neurons in the motor
cortex respond selectively to a limited bandwidth of frequencies, a
finding that further supported his conclusions. The question that began
to bother him was, If the picture of reality in our brains is not a picture at
all but a hologram, what is it a hologram of? The dilemma posed by this
question is analogous to taking a Polaroid picture of a group of people
sitting around a table and, after the picture develops, finding that,
instead of people, there are only blurry clouds of interference patterns
positioned around the table. In both cases one could rightfully ask,
Which is the true reality, the seemingly objective world experienced by
the observer/photographer or the blur of interference patterns recorded
by the camera/brain?

Pribram realized that if the holographic brain model was taken to its
logical conclusions, it opened the door on the possibility that objective
reality — the world of coffee cups, mountain vistas, elm trees, and table
lamps — might not even exist, or at least not exist in the way we believe
it exists. Was it possible, he wondered, that what the mystics had been
saying for centuries was true, reality was maya, an illusion, and what
was out there was really a vast, resonating symphony of wave forms, a
“frequency domain” that was transformed into the world as we know it
only after it entered our senses?

Realizing that the solution he was seeking might lie outside the
province of his own field, he went to his physicist son for advice. His
son recommended he look into the work of a physicist named David
Bohm. When Pribram did he was electrified. He not only found the
answer to his question, but also discovered that according to Bohm, the
entire universe was a hologram.

The Cosmos as Hologram


The Cosmos as Hologram

One con’t help but be astonished at the degree to which [Bohm] has
been able to break out of the tight molds of scientific conditioning and
stand alone with a completely new and literally vast idea, one which has
both internal consistency and the logical power to explain widely
diverging phenomena of physical experience from an entirely
unexpected point of view. … It is a theory which is so intuitively
satisfying that many people have felt that if the universe is not the way
Bohm describes it, it ought to be.

— John P. Briggs and F. David Peat
Looking Gloss Universe

The path that led Bohm to the conviction that the universe is structured
like a hologram began at the very edge of matter, in the world of
subatomic particles. His interest in science and the way things work
blossomed early. As a young boy growing up in Wilkes-Barre, Penn-
sylvania, he invented a dripless tea kettle, and his father, a successful
businessman, urged him to try to turn a profit on the idea. But after
learning that the first step in such a venture was to conduct a
door-to-door survey to test-market his invention, Bohm’s interest in
business waned. 1

His interest in science did not, however, and his prodigious curiosity
forced him to look for new heights to conquer. He found the most
challenging height of all in the 1930s when he attended Pennsylvania

State College, for it was there that he first became fascinated by
quantum physics.

It is an easy fascination to understand. The strange new land that
physicists had found lurking in the heart of the atom contained things
more wondrous than anything Cortes or Marco Polo ever encountered.
What made this new world so intriguing was that everything about it
appeared to be so contrary to common sense. It seemed more like a land
ruled by sorcery than an extension of the natural world, an
Alice-in- Wonderland realm in which mystifying forces were the norm
and everything logical had been turned on its ear.

One startling discovery made by quantum physicists was that if you
break matter into smaller and smaller pieces you eventually reach a point
where those pieces — electrons, protons, and so on — no longer possess
the traits of objects. For example, most of us tend to think of an electron
as a tiny sphere or a EB whizzing around, but nothing could be further
from the truth. Although an electron can sometimes behave as if it were a
compact little partiele, physicists have found that it literally possesses no
dimension. This is difficult for most of us to imagine because everything
at our own level of existence possesses dimension. And yet if you try to
measure the width of an electron, you will discover it’s an impossible
task. An electron is simply not an object as we know it.

Another discovery physicists made is that an electron can manifest as
either a particle or a wave. If you shoot an electron at the screen of a
television that’s been turned off, a tiny point of light will appear when it
strikes the phosphorescent chemicals that coat the glass. The single point
of impact the electron leaves on the screen clearly reveals the
particlelike side of its nature.

But this is not the only form the electron can assume. It can also
dissolve into a blurry cloud of energy and behave as if it were a wave
spread out over space. When an electron manifests as a wave it can do
things no particle can. If it is fired at a barrier in which two slits have
been cut, it can go through both slits simultaneously. When wavelike
electrons collide with each other they even create interference patterns.
The electron, like some shapeshifterout of folklore, can manifest as
either a particle or a wave.

This chameleonlike ability is common to all subatomic particles. It is
also common to all things once thought to manifest exclusively as waves.
Light, gamma rays, radio waves, X rays — all can change from waves to
particles and back again. Today physicists believe that sub-




The Cosmos as Hologram


atomic phenomena should not be classified solely as either waves or
particles, but as a single category of somethings that are always
somehow both. These somethings are called quanta, and physicists
believe they are the basic stuff from which the entire universe is made.*

Perhaps most astonishing of all is that there is compelling evidence
that the only time quanta ever manifest as particles is when we are
looking at them. For instance, when an electron isn’t being looked at,
experimental findings suggest that it is always a wave. Physicists are
able to draw this conclusion because they have devised clever strategies
for deducing how an electron behaves when it is not being observed (it
should be noted that this is only one interpretation of the evidence and is
not the conclusion of all physicists; as we will see, Bohm himself has a
different interpretation).

Once again this seems more like magic than the kind of behavior we
are accustomed to expect from the natural world. Imagine owning a
bowling ball that was only a bowling ball when you looked at it. If you
sprinkled talcum powder all over a bowling lane and rolled such a
“quantum” bowling ball toward the pins, it would trace a single line
through the talcum powder while you were watching it. But if you
blinked while it was in transit, you would find that for the second or two
you were not looking at it the bowling bail stopped tracing a line and
instead left a broad wavy strip, like the undulating swath of a desert
snake as it moves sideways over the sand (see fig. 7),

Such a situation is comparable to the one quantum physicists en-
countered when they first uncovered evidence that quanta coalesce into
particles only when they are being observed. Physicist Nick Herbert, a
supporter of this interpretation, says this has sometimes caused him to
imagine that behind his back the world is always “a radically ambiguous
and ceaselessly flowing quantum soup.” But whenever he turns around
and tries to see the soup, his glance instantly freezes it and turns it back
into ordinary reality. He believes this makes us all a little like Midas, the
legendary king who never knew the feel of silk or the caress of a human
hand because everything he touched turned to gold. “Likewise humans
can never experience the true texture of quantum reality,” says Herbert,
“because everything we touch turns to matter.””

A Quanta, is the plum! of quantum. One electron is a quantum. Several electrons aft a group
of quanta. The word quantum is also synonymous with wave particle, a term that is also
used to refer to something that possesses both particle and wave aspects.

Bohm and Interconnectedness

An aspect of quantum reality that Bohm found especially interesting w as
the strange state of interconnectedness that seemed to exist between
apparently unrelated subatomic events. What was equally perplexing
was that most physicists tended to attach little importance to the
phenomenon. In fact, so little was made of it that one of the most famous
examples of interconnectedness lay hidden in one of quantum physics’s
basic assumptions for a number of years before anyone noticed it was

That assumption was made by one of the founding fathers of quantum
physics, the Danish physicist Niels Bohr. Bohr pointed out that if
subatomic particles only come into existence in the presence of an
observer, then it is also meaningless to speak of a particle’s properties
and characteristics as existing before they are observed. This was
disturbing to many physicists, for much of science was based on dis-
covering the properties of phenomena. But if the act of observation
actually helped create such properties, what did that imply about the
future of science?

One physicist who was troubled by Bohr’s assertions was Einstein.
Despite the role Einstein had played in the founding of quantum theory,
he was not at all happy with the course the fledgling science

Figure 7. Physicists have found compelling evidence that the only time electrons
and other “quanta” manifest as particles is when we are looking at them. At all
other times they behave as waves. This is as strange as owning a bowling ball that
traces a single line down the lane while you are watching it, but leaves a wave
pattern every time you blink your eyes.



The Cosmos as Hologram


had taken. He found Bohr’s conclusion that a particle’s properties don’t
exist until they are observed particularly objectionable because, when
combined with another of quantum physics’ s findings, it implied that
subatomic particles were interconnected in a way Einstein simply didn’t
believe was possible.

That finding was the discovery that some subatomic processes result in
the creation of a pair of particles with identical or closely related
properties. Consider an extremely unstable atom physicists call
positronium. The positronium atom is composed of an electron and a
positron {a positron is an electron with a positive charge). Because a
positron is the electron’s antiparticle opposite, the two eventually
annihilate each other and decay into two quanta of light or “photons”
traveling in opposite directions (the capacity to shapeshift from one kind
of particle to another is just another of a quantum’s abilities). According
to quantum physics no matter how far apart the photons travel, when they
are measured they will always be found to have identical angles of
-polarization. (Polarization is the spatial orientation of the photon’s
wavelike aspect as it travels away from its point of origin.)

In 1935 Einstein and his colleagues Boris Podolsky and Nathan Rosen
published a now famous paper entitled “Can Quantum-Mechanical
Description of Physical Reality Be Considered Complete?” In it they
explained why the existence of such twin particles proved that Bohr
could not possibly be correct. As they pointed out, two such particles, say,
the photons emitted when positronium decays, could be produced and
allowed to travel a significant distance apart* Then they could be
intercepted and their angles of polarization measured. If the polarizations
are measured at precisely the same moment and are found to be identical,
as quantum physics predicts, and if Bohr was correct and properties such
as polarization do not coalesce into existence until they are observed or
measured, this suggests that somehow the two photons must be
instantaneously communicating with each other so they know which
angle of polarization to agree upon. The problem is that according to
Einstein’s special theory of relativity, nothing can travel faster than the
speed of light, let alone travel instantaneously, for that would be
tantamount to breaking the time

•Positrtpnintn decay is not the subatomic process Einstein and his colleagues employed in
their thought experiment, but » used here because it is easy to visualize.

barrier and would open the door on all kinds of unacceptable paradoxes.
Einstein and his colleagues were convinced that no “reasonable
definition” of reality would permit such faster-than-light interconnec-
tions to exist, and therefore Bohr had to be wrong. 3 Their argument is
now known as the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox, or EPR paradox
for short.

Bohr remained unperturbed by Einstein’s argument. Rather than
believing that some kind of faster-than-light communication was taking
place, he offered another explanation. If subatomic particles do not exist
until they are observed, then one could no longer think of them as
independent “things. ” Thus Einstein was basing his argument on an error
when he viewed twin particles as separate. They were part of an
indivisible system, and it was meaningless to think of them otherwise.

In time most physicists sided with Bohr and became content that his
interpretation was correct. One factor that contributed to Bohr’s triumph
was that quantum physics had proved so spectacularly successful in
predicting phenomena, few physicists were willing even to consider the
possibility that it might be faulty in some way. In addition, when
Einstein and his colleagues first made their proposal about twin particles,
technical and other reasons prevented such an experiment from actually
being performed. This made it even easier to put out of mind. This was
curious, for although Bohr had designed his argument to counter
Einstein’s attack on quantum theory, as we will see, Bohr’s view that
subatomic systems are indivisible has equally profound implications for
the nature of reality. Ironically, these implications were also ignored,
and once again the potential importance of interconnect-edness was
swept under the carpet.

A Living Sea of Electrons

During his early years as a physicist Bohm also accepted Bohr’s position,
but he remained puzzled by the lack of interest Bohr and his followers
displayed toward interconnectedness. After graduating from
Pennsylvania State College, he attended the University of California at
Berkeley, and before receiving his doctorate there in 1943, he worked at
the Lawrence Berkeley Radiation Laboratory. There he



The Cosmos as Hologram


encountered another striking example of quantum interconnectedness.

At the Berkeley Radiation Laboratory Bohm began what was to
become his landmark work on plasmas. A plasma is a gas containing a
high density of electrons and positive ions, atoms that have a positive
charge. To his amazement he found that once they were in a plasma,
electrons stopped behaving like individuals and started behaving as if
they were part of a larger and interconnected whole. Although their
individual movements appeared random, vast numbers of electrons were
able to produce effects that were surprisingly well-organized. Like some
amoeboid creature, the plasma constantly regenerated itself and
enclosed all impurities in a wall in the same way that a biological
organism might encase a foreign substance in a cyst.” So struck was
Bohm by these organic qualities that be later remarked he’d frequently
had the impression the electron sea was “alive.” 3

In 1 947 Bohm accepted an assistant professorship at Princeton Uni-
versity, an indication of how highly he was regarded, and there he
extended his Berkeley research to the study of electrons in metals. Once
again he found that the seemingly haphazard movements of individual
electrons managed to produce highly organized overall effects. Like the
plasmas he had studied at Berkeley, these were no longer situations
involving two particles, each behaving as if it knew what the other was
doing, but entire oceans of particles, each behaving as if it knew what
untold trillions of others were doing. Bohm called such collective
movements of electrons plasmons, and their discovery established his
reputation as a physicist.

they were both at Princeton they should meet and discuss the book. In
the first of what was to turn into a six-month series of spirited
conversations, Einstein enthusiastically told Bohm that he had never
seen quantum theory presented so clearly. Nonetheless, he admitted he
was still every bit as dissatisfied with the theory as was Bohm. During
their conversations the two men discovered they each had nothing but
admiration for the theory’s ability to predict phenomena. What bothered
them was that it provided no real way of conceiving of the basic
structure of the world. Bohr and his followers also claimed that quantum
theory was complete and it was not possible to arrive at any clearer
understanding of what was going on in the quantum realm. This was the
same as saying there was no deeper reality beyond the subatomic
landscape, no further answers to be found, and this, too, grated on both
Bohm and Einstein’s philosophical sensibilities. Over the course of their
meetings they discussed many other tilings, but these points in
particular gained new prominence in Bohm’s thoughts. Inspired by his
interactions with Einstein, he accepted the validity of his misgivings
about quantum physics and decided there .had to be an alternative view.
When his textbook Quantum Theory was published in 1951 it was
hailed as a classic, but it was a classic about a subject to which Bohm no
longer gave his full allegiance. His mind, ever active and always looking
for deeper explanations, was already searching for a better way of
describing reality.

Bohm’s Disillusionment

Both his sense of the importance of interconnectedness as well as his
growing dissatisfaction with several of the other prevailing views in
physics caused Bohm to become increasingly troubled by Bohr’s in-
terpretation of quantum theory. After three years of teaching the subject
at Princeton he decided to improve his understanding by writing a
textbook. When he finished he found he still wasn’t comfortable with
what quantum physics was saying and sent copies of the book to both
Bohr and Einstein to ask for their opinions. He got no answer from Bohr,
but Einstein contacted him and said that since

A New Kind of Field and the
Bullet That Killed Lincoln

After his talks with Einstein, Bohm tried to find a workable alternative
to Bohr’s interpretation. He began by assuming that particles such as
electrons do exist in the absence of observers. He also assumed that
there was a deeper reality beneath Bohr’s inviolable wall, a
subquan-turn level that still awaited discovery by science. Building on
these premises he discovered that simply by proposing the existence of a
new kind of field on this subquantum level he was able to explain the
findings of quantum physics as well as Bohr could. Bohm called his
proposed new field the quantum potential and theorized that, like
gravity, it pervaded all of space. However, unlike gravitational fields,



The Cosmos as Hologram


magnetic fields, and so on, its influence did not diminish with distance.
Its effects were subtle, but it was equally powerful everywhere. Bohm
published his alternative interpretation of quantum theory in 1952.

Reaction to his new approach was mainly negative. Some physicists
were so convinced such alternatives were impossible that they dismissed
his ideas out of hand. Others launched passionate attacks against his
reasoning. In the end virtually all such arguments were based primarily
on philosophical differences, but it did not matter. Bohr’s point of view
had become so entrenched in physics that Bohm’s alternative was looked
upon as little more than heresy.

Despite the harshness of these attacks Bohm remained unswerving in
his conviction that there was more to reality than Bohr’s view allowed.
He also felt that science was much too limited in its outlook when it
came to assessing new ideas such as his own, and b a 1 957 book entitled
Causality and Chance in Modern Physics, he examined several of the
philosophical suppositions responsible for this attitude. One was the
widely held assumption that it was possible for any single theory, such as
quantum theory, to be complete. Bohm criticized this assumption by
pointing out that nature may be infinite. Because it would not be possible
for any theory to completely explain something that is infinite, Bohm
suggested that open scientific inquiry might be better served if
researchers refrained from making this assumption.

In the book he argued that the way science viewed causality was also
much too limited. Most effects were thought of as having only one or
several causes. However, Bohm felt that an effect could have an infinite
number of causes. For example, if you asked someone what caused
Abraham Lincoln’s death, they might answer that it was the bullet in
John Wilkes Booth’s gun. But a complete list of all the causes that
contributed to Lincoln’s death would have to include all of the events
that led to the development of the gun, all of the factors that caused
Booth to want to kill Lincoln, all of the steps in the evolution of the
human race that allowed for the development of a hand capable of
holding a gun, and so on, and so on. Bohm conceded that most of the
time one could ignore the vast cascade of causes that had led to any
given effect, but he still felt it was important for scientists to remember
that no single cause-and-effect relationship was ever really separate from
the universe as a whole.

If You Want to Know Where You Are, Ask
the Nonlocals

During this same period of his life Bohm also continued to refine his
alternative approach to quantum physics. As he looked more carefully
into the meaning of the quantum potential he discovered it had a number
of features that implied an even more radical departure from orthodox
thinking. One was the importance of wholeness. Classical science had
always viewed the state of a system as a whole as merely the result of
the interaction of its parts. However, the quantum potential stood this
view on its ear and indicated that the behavior of the parts was actually
organized by the whole. This not only took Bohr’s assertion that
subatomic particles are not independent “things,” but are part of an
indivisible system one step further, but even suggested that wholeness
was in some ways the more primary reality.

It also explained how electrons in plasmas (and other specialized
states such as superconductivity) could behave like interconnected
wholes. As Bohm states, such “electrons are not scattered because,
through the action of the quantum potential, the whole system is
undergoing a co-ordinated movement more like a ballet dance than like a
crowd of unorganized people.” Once again he notes that “such quantum
wholeness of activity is closer to the organized unity of functioning of
the parts of a living being than it is to the kind of unity that is obtained
by putting together the parts of a machine.” 8

An even more surprising feature of the quantum potential was its
implications for the nature of location. At the level of our everyday lives
things have very specific locations, but Bohm’s interpretation of
quantum physics indicated that at the subquantum level, the level in
which the quantum potential operated, location ceased to exist. All
points in space became equal to all other points in space, and it was
meaningless to speak of anything as being separate from anything else.
Physicists call this properly “n on locality.”

The nonlocal aspect of the quantum potential enabled Bohm to ex-
plain the connection between twin particles without violating special
relativity’s ban against anything traveling faster than the speed of light.
To illustrate how, he offers the following analogy: Imagine a fish
swimming in an aquarium. Imagine also that you have never seen a fish
or an aquarium before and your only knowledge about them comes from
two television cameras, one directed at the aquarium’s



The Cosmos as Hologram


front and the other at its side. When you look at the two television
monitors you might mistakenly assume that the fish on the screens are
separate entities. After all, because the cameras are set at different
angles, each of the images will be slightly different. But as you continue
to watch you will eventually realize there is a relationship between the
two fish. When one turns, the other makes a slightly different but
corresponding turn. When one faces the front, the other faces the side,
and so on. If you are unaware of tile full scope of the situation, you
might wrongly conclude that the fish are instantaneously
communicating with one another, but this is not the case. No communi-
cation is taking place because at a deeper level of reality, the reality of
the aquarium, the two fish are actually one and the same. This, says
Bohm, is precisely what is going on between particles such as the two
photons emitted when a positronium atom decays (see fig. 8). Indeed,
because the quantum potential permeates all of space, all

Figure 8. Bohm believes subatomic particles are connected in the same way as
the images of the fish on the two television monitors. Although particles such as
electrons appear to be separate from one another, on a deeper level of reality — a
level analogous to the aquarium — they are actually just different aspects of a
deeper cosmic unity.

particles are nonlocally interconnected. More and more the picture of
reality Bohm was developing was not one in which subatomic particles
were separate from one another and moving through the void of space,
but one in which all things were part of an unbroken web and embedded
in a space that was as real and rich with process as the matter that moved
through it.

Bohm’s ideas still left most physicists unpersuaded, but did stir the
interest of a few. One of these was John Stewart Bell, a theoretical
physicist at CERN, a center for peaceful atomic research near Geneva,
Switzerland. Like Bohm, Bell had also become discontented with quan-
tum theory and felt there must be some alternative. As he later said,
“Then in 1952 I saw Bohm’s paper. His idea was to complete quantum
mechanics by saying there are certain variables in addition to those
which everybody knew about. That impressed me very much.” 1

Bell also realized that Bohm’s theory implied the existence of
nonlo-catity and wondered if there was any way of experimentally
verifying its existence. The question remained in the back of his mind
for years until a sabbatical in 1 964 provided him with the freedom to
focus his full attention on the matter. Then he quickly came up with an
elegant mathematical proof that revealed how such an experiment could
be performed. The only problem was that it required a level of
technological precision that was not yet available. To be certain that
particles, such as those in the EPR paradox, were not using some normal
means of communication, the basic operations of the experiment had to
be performed in such an in finite simally brief instant that there wouldn’t
even be enough time for a ray of light to cross the distance separating the
two particles. This meant that the instruments used in the experiment
had to perform all of the necessary operations within a few
thousand-millionths of a second.

Enter the Hologram

By the late 1950s Bohm had already had his run-in with MeCarthyism
and had become a research fellow at Bristol University, England. There,
along with a young research student named Yakir Aharonov, he
discovered another important example of nonlocal interconnected-ness.
Bohm and Aharonov found that under the right circumstances an
electron is able to “feel” the presence of a magnetic field that is in


The Cosmos as Hologram


a region where there is zero probability of finding the electron. This
phenomenon is now known as the Aharonov-Bohm effect, and when the
two men first published their discovery, many physicists did not believe
such an effect was possible. Even today there is enough residual
skepticism that, despite confirmation of the effect in numerous
experiments, occasionally papers still appear arguing that it doesn’t

As always, Bohm stoically accepted his continuing role as the voice in
the crowd that bravely notes the emperor has no clothes. In an interview
conducted some years later he offered a simple summation of the
philosophy underlying his courage: “In the long run it is far more
dangerous to adhere to illusion than to face what the actual fact is.” 8

Nevertheless, the limited response to his ideas about wholeness and
nonlocality and his own inability to see how to proceed further caused
him to focus his attention in other directions. In the 1 960s this led him to
take a closer look at order. Classical science generally divides things
into two categories: those that possess order in the arrangement of their
parts and those whose parts are disordered, or random, in arrangement.
Snowfiakes, computers, and living things are all ordered. The pattern a
handful of spilled coffee beans makes on the floor, the debris left by an
explosion, and a series of numbers generated by a roulette wheel are all

As Eohm delved more deeply into the matter he realized there were
also different degrees of order. Some things were much more ordered
than other things, and this implied that there was, perhaps, no end to the
hierarchies of order that existed in the universe. From this it occurred to
Eohm that maybe things that we perceive as disordered aren’t disordered
at all. Perhaps their order is of such an “indefinitely high degree” that
they only appear to us as random (interestingly, mathematicians are
unable to prove randomness, and although some sequences of numbers
are categorized as random, these are only educated guesses).

While immersed in these thoughts, Bohm saw a device on a BBC
television program that helped him develop his ideas even further. The
device was a specially designed jar containing a large rotating cylinder.
The narrow space between the cylinder and the jar was filled with
glycerine — a thick, clear liquid — and floating motionlessly in the glyce-
rine was a drop of ink. What interested Bohm was that when the handle
on the cylinder was turned, the drop of ink spread out through

the syrupy glycerine and seemed to disappear. But as soon as the handle
was turned back in the opposite direction, the faint tracing of ink slowiy
collapsed upon itself and once again formed a droplet (see
fig. 9)-Bohm writes, “This immediately struck me as very relevant to the
question of order, since, when the ink drop was spread out, it still had
a ‘hidden’ {i.e., nonmanifest) order that was revealed when it was
reconstituted. On the other hand, in our usual language, we would say
that the ink was in a state of ‘disorder* when it was diffused through
the glycerine. This led me to see that new notions of order must be
involved here.” 9

Fic-ure9, When a drop of ink is placed in ajar full of glycerine and a cylinder
inside the jar is turned, the drop appears to spread out and disappear. But when
the cylinder is turned in the opposite direction, the drop comes back together.
Eohm uses this phenomenon as an example of how order can be either manifest
(explicit) or hidden (implicit).



The Cosmos as Hologram


This discovery excited Bohm greatly, for it provided him with a new
way of looking at many of the problems he had been contemplating.
Soon after coming across the ink-in-g]ycerine device he encountered an
even better metaphor for understanding order, one that enabled him not
only to bring together all the various strands of his years of thinking, but
did so with such force and explanatory power it seemed almost
tailor-made for the purpose. That metaphor was the hologram.

As soon as Bohm began to reflect on the hologram he saw that it too
provided a new way of understanding order. Lake the ink drop in its
dispersed state, the bterference patterns recorded on a piece of
holographic film also appear disordered to the naked eye. Both possess
orders that are hidden or enfolded in much the same way that the order in
a plasma is enfolded in the seemingly random behavior of each of its
electrons. But this was not the only insight the hologram provided.

The more Bohm thought about it the more convinced he became that
the universe actually employed holographic principles in its operations,
was itself a kind of giant, flowing hologram, and this realization allowed
him to crystallize all of his various insights into a sweeping and
cohesive whole. He published his first papers on his holographic view of
the universe in the early 1970s, and in 1980 he presented a mature
distillation of his thoughts in a book entitled Wholeness and the
Implicate Order. In it he did more than just link his myriad ideas
together. He transfigured them into a new way of looking at reality that
was as breathtaking as it was radical.

Enfolded Orders and Unfolded Realities

One of Bohm’s most startling assertions is that the tangible reality of our
everyday lives is really a kind of illusion, like a holographic image.
Underlying it is a deeper order of existence, a vast and more primary
level of reality that gives birth to all the objects and appearances of our
physical world in much the same way that a piece of holographic film
gives birth to a hologram. Bohm calls this deeper level of reality the
implicate (which means “enfolded”) order, and he refers to our own
level of existence as the explicate, or unfolded, order. He uses these
terms because he sees the manifestation of all forms

in the universe as the result of countless enfoldings and unfoldings
between these two orders. For example, Bohm believes an electron is
not one thing but a totality or ensemble enfolded throughout the whole
of space. When an instrument detects the presence of a single electron it
is simply because one aspect of the electron’s ensemble has unfolded,
similar to the way an ink drop unfolds out of the glycerine, at that
particular location. When an electron appears to be moving it is due to a
continuous series of such unfoldments and enfoldments.

Put another way, electrons and all other particles are no more sub-
stantive or permanent than the form a geyser of water takes as it gushes
out of a fountain. They are sustained by a constant influx from the
implicate order, and when a particle appears to be destroyed, it is not
lost. It has merely enfolded back into the deeper order from which it
sprang. A piece of holographic film and the image it generates are also
an example of an implicate and explicate order. The film is an implicate
order because the image encoded in its interference patterns is a hidden
totality enfolded throughout the whole. The hologram projected from
the film is an explicate order because it represents the unfolded and
perceptible version of the image.

The constant and flowing exchange between the two orders explains
how particles, such as the electron in the positronium atom, can
shape-shift from one kind of particle to another. Such shiftings can be
viewed as one particle, say an electron, enfolding back into the implicate
order while another, a photon, unfolds and takes its place. It also
explains how a quantum can manifest as either a particle or a wave.
According to Bohm, both aspects are always enfolded in a quantum’s
ensemble, but the way an observer interacts with the ensemble
determines which aspect unfolds and which remains hidden. As such,
the role an observer plays in determining the form a quantum takes may
be no more mysterious than the fact that the way a jeweler manipulates a
gem determines which of its facets become visible and which do not.
Because the term hologram usually refers to an image that is static and
does not convey the dynamic and ever active nature of the incalculable
enfoldings and unfoldings that moment by moment create our universe,
Bohm prefers to describe the universe not as a hologram, but as a
” holomovement. ”

The existence of a deeper and holographically organized order also
explains why reality becomes nonlocal at the subquantum level. As we
have seen, when something is organized holographically, all sem-



The Cosmos as Hologram


blance of location breaks down. Saying that every part of a piece of
holographic film contains all the information possessed by the whole is
really just another way of saying that the information is distributed
nonlocally. Hence, if the universe is organized according to holographic
principles, it, too, would be expected to have nonlocal properties.

The Undivided Wholeness of All Things

Most mind-boggling of all are Bohm’s fully developed ideas about
wholeness. Because everything in the cosmos is made out of the seam-
less holographic fabric of the implicate order, he believes it is as
meaningless to view the universe as composed of “parts,” as it is to view
the different geysers in a fountain as separate from the water out of
which they flow. An electron is not an “elementary particle.” It is just a
name given to a certain aspect of the holomovement. Dividing reality up
into parts and then naming those parts is always arbitrary, a product of
convention, because subatomic particles, and everything else in the
universe, are no more separate from one another than different patterns
in an ornate carpet.

This is a profound suggestion. In his general theory of relativity
Einstein astounded the world when he said that space and time are not
separate entities, but are smoothly linked and part of a larger whole he
called the space-time continuum. Bohm takes this idea a giant step
further. He says that everything in the universe is part of a continuum.
Despite the apparent separateness of things at the explicate level,
everything is a seamless extension of everything else, and ultimately
even the implicate and explicate orders blend into each other.

Take a moment to consider this. Look at your hand. Now look at the
light streaming from the lamp beside you. And at the dog resting at your
feet. You are not merely made of the same things. You are the same thing.
One thing. Unbroken. One enormous something that has extended its
uncountable arms and appendages into all the apparent objects, atoms,
restless oceans, and twinkling stars in the cosmos.

Bohm cautions that this does not mean the universe is a giant undif-
ferentiated mass. Things can be part of an undivided whole and still
possess their own unique qualities. To illustrate what he means he

points to the little eddies and whirlpools that often form in a river. At a
glance such eddies appear to be separate things and possess many
individual characteristics such as size, rate, and direction of rotation, et
cetera. But careful scrutiny reveals that it is impossible to determine
where any given whirlpool ends and the river begins. Thus, Bohm is not
suggesting that the differences between “things” is meaningless. He
merely wants us to be aware constantly that dividing various aspects of
the holomovement into “things” is always an abstraction, a way of
making those aspects stand out in our perception by our way of thinking.
In attempts to correct this, instead of calling different aspects of the
holomovement “things,” he prefers to call them “relatively independent
subtotalities.” 10

Indeed, Bohm believes that our almost universal tendency to fragment
the world and ignore the dynamic interconnectedness of all things is
responsible for many of our problems, not only in science but in our lives
and our society as well. For instance, we believe we can extract the
valuable parts of the earth without affecting the whole. We believe it is
possible to treat parts of our body and not be concerned with the whole.
We believe we can deal with various problems in our society, such as
crime, poverty, and drug addiction, without addressing the problems in
our society as a whole, and so on. In his writings Bohm argues
passionately that our current way of fragmenting the world into parts not
only doesn’t work, but may even lead to our extinction.

Consciousness as a More Subtle Form of Matter

In addition to explaining why quantum physicists find so many examples
of interconnectedness when they plumb the depths of matter, Bohm’s
holographic universe explains many other puzzles. One is the effect
consciousness seems to have on the subatomic world. As we have seen,
Bohm rejects the idea that particles don’t exist until they are observed.
But he is not in principle against trying to bring consciousness and
physics together. He simply feels that most physicists go about it the
wrong way, by once again trying to fragment reality and saying that one
separate thing, consciousness, interacts with another separate thing, a
subatomic particle.



The Cosmos as Hologram


Because all such things are aspects of the holomovement, he feels it
has no meaning to speak of consciousness and matter as interacting. In a
sense, the observer is the observed. The observer is aJso the measuring
device, the experimental results, the laboratory, and the breeze that
blows outside the laboratory. In fact, Bohm believes that consciousness
is a more subtle form of matter, and the basis for any relationship
between the two lies not in our own level of reality, but deep in the
implicate order. Consciousness is present in various degrees of
enfoidment and unfoldment in all matter, which is perhaps why plasmas
possess some of the traits of living things. As Bohm puts it, “The ability
of form to be active is the most characteristic feature of mind, and we
have something that is mindlike already with the electron.” 11

Similarly, he believes that dividing the universe up into living and
nonliving things also has no meaning. Animate and inanimate matter are
inseparably interwoven, and life, too, is enfolded throughout the totality
of the universe. Even a rock is in some way alive, says Bohm, for life
and intelligence are present not only in all of matter, but in “energy,”
“space,” “time,” “the fabric of the entire universe,” and everything else
we abstract out of the holomovement and mistakenly view as separate

The idea that consciousness and life (and indeed all things) are
ensembles enfolded throughout the universe has an equally dazzling flip
side. Just as every portion of a hologram contains the image of the whole,
every portion of the universe enfolds the whole. This means that if we
knew how to access it we could find the Andromeda galaxy in the
thumbnail of our left hand. We could also find Cleopatra meeting Caesar
for the first time, for in principle the whole past and implications for the
whole future are also enfolded in each small region of space and time.
Every cell in our body enfolds the entire cosmos. So does every leaf,
every raindrop, and every dust mote, which gives new meaning to
William Blake’s famous poem:

To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a
Heaven in a Wild Flower, Hold Infinity in
the palm of your hand And Eternity in an

The Energy of a Trillion Atomic Bombs in
Every Cubic Centimeter of Space

If our universe is only a pale shadow of a deeper order, what else lies
hidden, enfolded in the warp and weft of our reality? Bohm has a
suggestion. According to our current understanding of physics, every
region of space is awash with different kinds of fields composed of
waves of varying lengths. Each wave always has at least some energy.
When physicists calculate the minimum amount of energy a wave can
possess, they find that every cubic centimeter of empty space contains
more energy than the total energy of all the matter in the known

Some physicists refuse to take this calculation seriously and believe it
must somehow be in error. Bohm thinks this infinite ocean of energy
does exist and tells us at least a little about the vast and hidden nature of
the implicate order. He feels most physicists ignore the existence of this
enormous ocean of energy because, like fish who are unaware of the
water in which they swim, they have been taught to focus primarily on
objects embedded in the ocean, on matter.

Bohm’s view that space is as real and rich with process as the matter
that moves through it reaches full maturity in his ideas about the
implicate sea of energy. Matter does not exist independently from the
sea, from so-called empty space. It is a part of space. To explain what he
means, Bohm offers the following analogy: A crystal cooled to absolute
zero will allow a stream of electrons to pass through it without scattering
them. If the temperature is raised, various flaws in the crystal will lose
their transparency, so to speak, and begin to scatter electrons. Prom an
electron’s point of view such flaws would appear as pieces of “matter”
floating in a sea of nothingness, but this is not really the case. The
nothingness and the pieces of matter do not exist independently from
one another. They are both part of the same fabric, the deeper order of
the crystal.

Bohm believes the same is true at our own level of existence. Space is
not empty. It is full, a plenum as opposed to a vacuum, and is the ground
for the existence of everything, including ourselves. The universe is not
separate from this cosmic sea of energy, it is a ripple on its surface, a
comparatively small “pattern of excitation” in the midst of an
unimaginably vast ocean. “This excitation pattern is relatively
autonomous and gives rise to approximately recurrent, stable and



The Cosmos as Hologram


separable projections into a three-dimensional explicate order of mani-
festation/’ states Bohm. z In other words, despite its apparent materiality
and enormous size, the universe does not exist in and of itself, but is the
stepchild of something far vaster and more ineffable. More than that, it is
not even a major production of this vaster something, but is only a
passing shadow, a mere hiccup in the greater scheme of things.

This infinite sea of energy is not all that is enfolded in the implicate
order. Because the implicate order is the foundation that has given birth
to everything in our universe, at the very least it also contains every
subatomic particle that has been or will be; every configuration of matter,
energy, life, and consciousness that is possible, from quasars to the brain
of Shakespeare, from the double helix, to the forces that control the sizes
and shapes of galaxies. And even this is not all it may contain. Bohm
concedes that there is no reason to believe the implicate order is the end
of things. There may be other undreamed of orders beyond it, infinite
stages of further development.

Experimental Support for Bohm’s
Holographic Universe

A number of tantalizing findings in physics suggest that Bohm may be
correct. Even disregarding the implicate sea of energy, space is filled
with light and other electromagnetic waves that constantly crisscross
and interfere with one another. As we have seen, all particles are also
waves. This means that physical objects and everything else we perceive
in reality are composed of interference patterns, a fact that has
undeniable holographic implications.

Another compelling piece of evidence comes from a recent experi-
mental finding. In the 1970s the technology became available to actually
perform the two-particle experiment outlined by Bell, and a number of
different researchers attempted the task. Although the findings were
promising, none was able to produce conclusive results. Then in 1982
physicists Alain Aspect, Jean Dalibard and Gerard Roger of the Institute
of Optics at the University of Paris succeeded. First they produced a
series of twin photons by heating calcium atoms with lasers. Then they
allowed each photon to travel in opposite directions

through 6.5 meters of pipe and pass through special filters that directed
them toward one of two possible polarization analyzers. It took each
filter 10 billionths of a second to switch between one analyzer or the
other, about 30 billionths of a second less than it took for light to travel
the entire 1 3 meters separating each set of photons. In this way Aspect
and his colleagues were able to rule out any possibility of the photons
communicating through any known physical process.

Aspect and his team discovered that, as quantum theory predicted,
each photon was still able to correlate its angle of polarization with that
of its twin. This meant that either Einstein’s ban against faster-than-light
communication was being violated, or the two photons were nonlocally
connected. Because most physicists are opposed to admitting
faster-than-light processes into physics, Aspect’s experiment is
generally viewed as virtual proof that the connection between the two
photons is nonlocal. Furthermore, as physicist Paul Davis of the Uni-
versity of Newcastle upon Tyne, England, observes, since all particles
are continually interacting and separating, “the nonlocal aspects of
quantum systems is therefore a general properly of nature.” 13

Aspect’s findings do not prove that Bohm’s model of the universe is
correct, but they do provide it with tremendous support. Indeed, as
mentioned, Bohm does not believe any theory is correct in an absolute
sense, including his own. All are only approximations of the truth, finite
maps we use to try to chart territory that is both infinite and indivisible.
This does not mean he feels his theory is not testable. He is confident
that at some point in the future techniques will be developed which will
allow his ideas to be tested (when Bohm is criticized on this point he
notes that there are a number of theories in physics, such as “superstring
theory,” which will probably not be testable for several decades).

The Reaction of the Physics Community

Most physicists are skeptical of Bohm’s ideas. For example, Yale phys-
icist Lee Smolin simply does not find Bohm’s theory “very compelling,
physically.” 1 ” Nonetheless, there is an almost universal respect for
Bohm’s intelligence. The opinion of Boston University physicist Abner
Shimony is representative of this view. “I’m afraid I just don’t under-
stand his theory. It is certainly a metaphor and the question is how



literally to take the metaphor. StiH, he has really thought very deeply
about the matter and 1 think he’s done a tremendous service by bringing
these questions to the forefront of physics’s research instead of just
having them swept under the rug. He’s been a courageous, daring, and
imaginative man.” 15

Such skepticism notwithstanding, there are also physicists who are
sympathetic to Bohm’s ideas, including such big guns as Roger Penrose
of Oxford, the creator of the modern theory of the black hole; Bernard
d’Espagnat of the University of Paris, one of the world’s leading
authorities on the conceptual foundations of quantum theory; and
Cambridge’s Brian Josephson, winner of the 1973 Nobel Prize in
physics. Josephson believes Bohm’s implicate order may someday even
lead to the inclusion of God or Mind within the framework of science,
an idea Josephson supports. 16

Pribram and Bohm Together

Considered together, Bohm and Pribram’s theories provide a profound
new way of looking at the world: Our brains mathematically construct
objective reality by interpreting frequencies that are ultimately
projections from another dimension, a deeper order of existence that is
beyond both space and time: The brain is a hologram enfolded in a
holographic universe.

For Pribram, this synthesis made him realize that the objective world
does not exist, at least not in the way we are accustomed to believing.
What is “out there” is a vast ocean of waves and frequencies, and reality
looks concrete to us only because our brains are able to take this
holographic blur and convert it into the sticks and stones and other
familiar objects that make up our world. How is the brain (which itself is
composed of frequencies of matter) able to take something as
insubstantial as a blur of frequencies and make it seem solid to the touch?
“The kind of mathematical process that Bekesy simulated with his
vibrators is basic to how our brains construct our image of a world out
there,” Pribram states. 17 In other words, the smoothness of a piece of fine
china and the feel of beach sand beneath our feet are really just elaborate
versions of the phantom bmb syndrome.

The Cosmos as Hologram


According to Pribram this does not mean there aren’t china cups and
grains of beach sand out there. It simply means that a china cup has two
very different aspects to its reality. When it is filtered through the lens
of our brain it manifests as a cup. But if we could get rid of our lenses,
we’d experience it as an interference pattern. Which one is real and
which is illusion? “Both are real to me,” says Pribram, “or, if you want
to say, neither of them are real.'” 8

This state of affairs is not limited to china cups. We, too, have two
very different aspects to our reality. We ean view ourselves as physical
bodies moving through space. Or we can view ourselves as a blur of
interference patterns enfolded throughout the cosmic hologram. Bohm
believes this second point of view might even be the more correct, for to
think of ourselves as a holographic mind/brain looking at a holographic
universe is again an abstraction, an attempt to separate two things that
ultimately cannot be separated. 13

Do not be troubled if this is difficult to grasp. It is relatively easy to
understand the idea of holism in something that is external to us, like an
apple in a hologram. What makes it difficult is that in this case we are
not looking at the hologram. We are part of the hologram.

The difficulty is also another indication of how radical a revision
Bohm and Pribram are trying to make in our way of thinking. But it is
not the only radical revision. Pribram’s assertion that our brains
construct objects pales beside another of Bohm’s conclusions: that we
even construct space and time. 20 The implications of this view are just
one of the subjects that will be examined as we explore the effect Bohm
and Pribram’s ideas have had on the work of researchers in other fields.



If we were to look closely at an individual human
being, we would immediately notice that it is a
unique hologram unto itself; self-contained,
self -generating, and self-knowledgeable. Yet if we
were to remove this being from its planetary
context, we would quickly realize that the human
form is not unlike a mnndala or symbolic poem, for
within its form and flow lives comprehensive
information about various physical, social,
psychological, and evolutionary contexts within
which it was created.

— Dr. Ken Dychfwald

in The Holographic Paradigm
(Ken Wilber, editor]

The Holographic Model
and Psychology

While the traditional model of psychiatry and psychoanalysis is
strictly personalistic and biographical, modern consciousness
research has added new levels, realms, and dimensions and
shows the human psyche as being essentially commensurate
with the whole universe and all of existence.

— Stanislav Grof Beyond
the Brain

One area of research on which the holographic model has had an impact
is psychology. This is not surprising, for, as Bohm has pointed out,
consciousness itself provides a perfect example of what he means by
undivided and flowing movement. The ebb and flow of our con-
sciousness is not precisely definable but can be seen as a deeper and
more fundamental reality out of which our thoughts and ideas unfold. In
turn, these thoughts and ideas are not unlike the ripples, eddies, and
whirlpools that form in a flowing stream, and like the whirlpools in a
stream some can recur and persist in a more or less stable way, while
others are evanescent and vanish almost as quickly as they appear. The
holographic idea also sheds light on the unexplainable linkages that can
sometimes occur between the consciousnesses of two or more
individuals. One of the most famous examples of such linkage is em-




bodied in Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung’s concept of a collective uncon-
scious. Early in his career Jung became convinced that the dreams,
artwork, fantasies, and hallucinations of his patients often contained
symbols and ideas that could not be explained entirely as products of
their personal history. Instead, such symbols more closely resembled the
images and themes of the world’s great mythologies and religions. Jung
concluded that myths, dreams, hallucinations, and religious visions all
spring from the same source, a collective unconscious that is shared by
all people.

One experience that led Jung to this conclusion took place in 1 906 and
involved the hallucination of a young man suffering from paranoid
schizophrenia. One day while making his rounds Jung found the young
man standing at a window and staring up at the sun. The man was also
moving his head from side to side in a curious manner. When Jung
asked him what he was doing he explained that he was looking at the
sun’s penis, and when he moved his head from side to side, the sun’s
penis moved and caused the wind to blow.

At the time Jung viewed the man’s assertion as the product of a
hallucination. But several years later he came across a translation of a
two-thousand-year-old Persian religious text that changed his mind. The
text consisted of a series of rituals and invocations designed to bring on
visions. It described one of the visions and said that if the participant
looked at the sun he would see a tube hanging down from it, and when
the tube moved from side to side it would cause the wind to blow. Since
circumstances made it extremely unlikely that the man had had contact
with the text containing the ritual, Jung concluded that the man’s vision
was not simply a product of his unconscious mind, but had bubbled up
from a deeper level, from the collective unconscious of the human race
itself. Jung called such images archetypes and believed they were so
ancient it’s as if each of us has the memory of a two-million-year-old
man lurking somewhere in the depths of our unconscious minds.

Although Jung’s concept of a collective unconscious has had an
enormous impact on psychology and is now embraced by untold thou-
sands of psychologists and psychiatrists, our current understanding of
the universe provides no mechanism for explaining its existence. The
interconnectedness of all things predicted by the holographic model,
however, does offer an explanation. In a universe in which ail things are
infinitely interconnected, all consciousnesses are also interconnected.
Despite appearances, we are beings without borders. Or as

The Holographic Model and Psychology


Eohm puts it, “Deep down the consciousness of mankind is one.” 1

If each of us has access to the unconscious knowledge of the entire
human race, why aren’t we all walking encyclopedias? Psychologist
Robert M. Anderson, Jr., of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy,
New York, believes it is because we are only able to tap into information
in the implicate order that is directly relevant to our memories. Anderson
calls this selective process personal resonance and likens it to the fact
that a vibrating tuning fork will resonate with (or set up a vibration in)
another tuning fork only if the second tuning fork possesses a similar
structure, shape, and size, “Due to personal resonance, relatively few of
the almost infinite variety of ‘images’ in the implicate holographic
structure of the universe are available to an individual’s personal
consciousness,” says Anderson. “Thus, when enlightened persons
glimpsed this unitive consciousness centuries ago, they did not write out
relativity theory because they were not studying physics in a context
similar to that in which Einstein studied physics.””

Dreams and the Holographic Universe

Another researcher who believes Bohm’s implicate order has applica-
tions in psychology is psychiatrist Montague Uilman, the founder of the
Dream Laboratory at the Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, New
York, and a professor emeritus of clinical psychiatry at the Albert
Einstein College of Medicine, also in New York. Ullman’s initial
interest in the holographic concept stemmed also from its suggestion
that all people are interconnected in the holographic order. He has good
reason for his interest Throughout the 1960s and 1970s he was
responsible for many of the ESP dream experiments mentioned in the
introduction. Even today the ESP dream studies conducted at
Maimonides stand as some of the best empirical evidence that, in our
dreams at least, we are able to communicate with one another in ways
that cannot presently be explained.

In a typical experiment a paid volunteer who claimed to possess no
psychic ability was asked to sleep in a room in the lab while a person in
another room concentrated on a randomly selected painting and tried to
get the volunteer to dream of the image it contained. Sometimes the
results were inconclusive. But other times the volunteers bad dreams
that were clearly influenced by the paintings. For exam-



pie, when the target painting was Tamayo’s Animals, a picture depict-ing
two dogs flashing their teeth and howling over a pile of bones, the test
subject dreamed she was at a banquet where there was not enough meat
and everyone was warily eyeing one another as they greedily ate their
allotted portions.

In another experiment the target picture was Chagall’s Paris from a
Window, a brightly colored painting depicting a man looking out a
window at the Paris skyline. The painting also contained several other
unusual features, including a cat with a human face, several small figures
of men flying through the air, and a chair covered with flowers. Over the
course of several nights the test subject dreamed repeatedly about things
French, French architecture, a French policeman’s hat, and a man in
French attire gazing at various “layers” of a French village. Some of the
images in these dreams also appeared to be specific references to the
painting’s vibrant colors and unusual features, such as the image of a
group of bees flying around flowers, and a brightly colored Mardi
Gras-type celebration in which the people were wearing costumes and
masks. 3

Although Ullman believes such findings are evidence of the underlying
state of interconnectedness Eohm is talking about, he feels that an even
more profound example of holographic wholeness can be found in
another aspect of dreaming. That is the ability of our dreaming selves
often to be far wiser than we ourselves are in our waking state. For
instance, Ullman says that in his psychoanalytic practice he could have a
patient who seemed completely unenlightened when he was
awake — mean, selfish, arrogant, exploitative, and manipulative; a
person who had fragmented and dehumanized all of his interpersonal
relationships. But no matter how spiritually blind a person may be, or
unwilling to recognize his or her own shortcomings, dreams invariably
depict their failings honestly and contain metaphors that seem designed
to prod him or her gently into a state of greater self-awareness.

Moreover, such dreams were not one-time occurrences. During the
course of his practice Ullman noticed that when one of his patients failed
to recognize or accept some truth about himself, that truth would surface
again and again in his dreams, in different metaphorical guises and
linked with different related experiences from his past, but always in an
apparent attempt to offer him new opportunities to come to terms with
the truth.

Because a man can ignore the counsel of his dreams and still live to be
a hundred, Ullman believes this self -monitoring process is striv-

The Holographic Model and Psychology


ing for more than just the welfare of the individual. He believes that
nature is concerned with the survival of the species. He also agrees with
Bohm on the importance of wholeness and feels that dreams are nature’s
way of faying to counteract our seemingly unending compulsion to
fragment the world. “An individual can disconnect from all that’s
cooperative, meaningful, and loving and still survive, but nations don’t
have that luxury. Unless we learn how to overcome all the ways we’ve
fragmented the human race, nationally, religiously, economically, or
whatever, we are going to continue to find ourselves in a position where
we can accidentally destroy the whole picture,” says Ullman. “The only
way we can do that is to look at how we fragment our existence as
individuals. Dreams reflect our individual experience, but I think that’s
because there’s a greater underlying need to preserve the species, to
maintain species-connectedness. ” 4

What is the source of the unending flow of wisdom that bubbles up in
our dreams? Ullman admits that he doesn’t know, but he offers a
suggestion. Given that the implicate order represents in a sense an
infinite information source, perhaps it is the origin of this greater fund
Of knowledge. Perhaps dreams are a bridge between the perceptual and
nonmanifest orders and represent a “natural transformation of the
implicate into the explicate.” 6 If Ullman is correct in this supposition it
stands the traditional psychoanalytic view of dreams on its ear, for
instead of dream content being something that ascends into con-
sciousness from a primitive substratum of the personality, quite the
opposite would be true.

Psychosis and the Implicate Order

Ullman believes that some aspects of psychosis ean also be explained by
the holographic idea. Both Bohm and Pribram have noted that the
experiences mystics have reported throughout the ages — such as feel-
ings of cosmic oneness with the universe, a sense of unity with all life,
and so forth — sound very much like descriptions of the implicate Order.
They suggest that perhaps mystics are somehow able to peer beyond
ordinary explicate reality and glimpse its deeper, more holographic
qualities. Ullman believes that psychotics are also able to experience
certain aspects of the holographic level of reality. But because they are
unable to order their experiences rationally, these



glimpses are only tragic parodies of the ones reported by mystics.

For example, schizophrenics often report oceanic feelings of oneness
with the universe, but in a magic, delusional way. They describe feeling
a loss of boundaries between themselves and others, a belief that leads
them to think their thoughts are no longer private. They believe they are
able to read the thoughts of others. And instead of viewing- people,
objects, and concepts as individual things, they often view them as
members of larger and larger subclasses, a tendency that seems to be a
way of expressing the holographic quality of the reality in which they
find themselves.

Ullman believes that schizophrenics try to convey their sense of
unbroken wholeness in the way they view space and time. Studies have
shown that schizophrenics often treat the converse of any relation as
identical to the relation. 6 For instance, according to the schizophrenic’s
way of thinking, saying that “event A follows event B” is the same as
saying “event B follows event A.” The idea of one event following
another in any kind of time sequence is meaningless, for all points in
time are viewed equal. The same is true of spatial relations. If a man’s
head is above his shoulders, then his shoulders are also above his head.
Like the image in a piece of holographic film, things no longer have
precise locations, and spatial relationships cease to have meaning.

Ullman believes that certain aspects of holographic thinking are even
more pronounced in manicTdepressives. Whereas the schizophrenic
only gets whiffs of the holographic order, the manic is deeply involved
in it and grandiosely identifies with its infinite potential. “He can’t keep
up with all the thoughts and ideas that come at him in so overwhelming
a way,” states Ullman, “He has to lie, dissemble, and manipulate those
about him so as to accommodate to his expansive vista. The end result,
of course, is mostly chaos and confusion mixed with occasional
outbursts of creativity and success in consensual reality.” 7 In turn, the
manic becomes depressed after he returns from this surreal vacation and
once again faces the hazards and chance occurrences of everyday life.

If it is true that we all encounter aspects of the implicate order when
we dream, why don’t these encounters have the same effect on us as they
do on psychotics? One reason, says Ullman, is that we leave the unique
and challenging logic of the dream behind when we wake. Because of
his condition the psychotic is forced to contend with it while
simultaneously trying to function in everyday reality. Ullman also
theorizes that when we dream, most of us have a natural protective

The Holographic Model and Psychology


mechanism that keeps us from coming into contact with more of the
implicate order than we can cope with.

Lucid Dreams and Parallel Universes

In recent years psychologists have become increasingly interested in
lucid dreams, a type of dream in which the dreamer maintains full
waking consciousness and is aware that he or she is dreaming. In
addition to the consciousness factor, lucid dreams are unique in several
other ways. Unlike normal dreams in which the dreamer is primarily a
passive participant, in a lucid dream the dreamer is often able to control
the dream in various ways — turn nightmares into pleasant experiences,
change the setting of the dream, and/or summon up particular
individuals or situations. Lucid dreams are also much more vivid and
suffused with vitality than normal dreams. In a lucid dream marble
floors seem eerily solid and real, flowers, dazzlingly colorful and
fragrant, and everything is vibrant and strangely energized. Researchers
studying lucid dreams believe they may lead to new ways to stimulate
personal growth, enhance self-confidence, promote mental and physical
health, and facilitate creative problem solving. 1 *

At the 1987 annual meeting of the Association for the Study of
Dreams held in Washington, D.C., physicist Fred Alan Wolf delivered a
talk in which he asserted that the holographic model may help explain
this unusual phenomenon. Wolf, an occasional lucid dreamer himself,
points out that a piece of holographic film actually generates two images,
a virtual image that appears to be in the space behind the film, and a real
image that comes into focus in the space in front of the film. One
difference between the two is that the light waves that compose a virtual
image seem to be diverging/rom an apparent focus or source. As we
have seen, this is an illusion, for the virtual image of a hologram has no
more extension in space than does the image in a mirror. But the real
image of a hologram is formed by light waves that are coming to a focus,
and this is not an illusion. The real image does possess extension in
space. Unfortunately, little attention is paid to this real image in the
usual applications of holography because an image that comes into
focus in empty air is invisible and can only be seen when dust particles
pass through it, or when someone blows a puff of smoke through it.



Wolf believes that all dreams are internal holograms, and ordinary
dreams are less vivid because they are virtual images. However, he
thinks the brain also has the ability to generate real images, and that is
exactly what it does when we are dreaming lucidly. The unusual
vibrancy of the lucid dream is due to the fact that the waves are
converging and not diverging. “If there is a ‘viewer’ where these waves
focus, that viewer wil) be bathed in the scene, and the scene coming to a
focus will ‘contain’ him. In this way the dream experience will appear
‘lucid,’ ” observes Wolf. 8

Like Pribram, Wolf believes our minds create the illusion of reality
“out there” through the same kind of processes studied by Bekesy. He
believes these processes are also what allows the lucid dreamer to create
subjective realities in which things like marble floors and flowers are as
tangible and real as their so-called objective counterparts. In fact, he
thinks our ability to be lucid in our dreams suggests that there may not be
much difference between the world at large and the world inside our
heads. “When the observer and the observed can separate and say this is
the observed and this is the observer, which is an effect one seems to be
having when lucid, then I think it’s questionable whether [lucid dreams]
should be considered subjective,” says Wolf. 10

Wolf postulates that lucid dreams (and perhaps all dreams) are
actually visits to parallel universes. They are just smaller holograms
within the larger and more inclusive cosmic hologram. He even suggests
that the ability to lucid-dream might better be called parallel universe
awareness. “I call it parallel universe awareness because I believe that
parallel universes arise as other images in the hologram,” Wolf states. 11
This and other similar ideas about the ultimate nature of dreaming will
be explored in greater depth later in the book.

Hitching a Ride on the Infinite Subway

The idea that we are able to access images from the collective uncon-
scious, or even visit parallel dream universes, pales beside the conclu-
sions of another prominent researcher who has been influenced by the
holographic model. He is Stanislav Grof, chief of psychiatric research at
the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center and an assistant professor of
psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

The Holographic Model and Psychology


After more than thirty years of studying nonordinary states of con-
sciousness, Grof has concluded that the avenues of exploration available
to our psyches via holographic interconnectedness are more than vast.
They are virtually endless.

Grof first became interested in nonordinary states of consciousness in
the 1950s while investigating the clinicai uses of the hallucinogen LSD
at the Psychiatric Research Institute in his native Prague, Czech-
oslovakia. The purpose of his research was to determine whether LSD
had any therapeutic applications. When Grof began his research, most
scientists viewed the LSD experience as little more than a stress reaction,
the brain’s way of responding to a noxious chemical. But when Grof
studied the records of his patient’s experiences he did not find evidence
of any recurring stress reaction. Instead, there was a definite continuity
running through each of the patient’s sessions. “Rather than being
unrelated and random, the experiential content seemed to represent a
successive unfolding of deeper and deeper levels of the unconscious,”
says Grof. 12 This suggested that repeated LSD sessions had important
ramifications for the practice and theory of psychotherapy, and provided
Grof and his colleagues with the impetus they needed to continue the
research. The results were striking. It quickly became clear that serial
LSD sessions were able to expedite the psychotherapeutic process and
shorten the time necessary for the treatment of many disorders.
Traumatic memories that had haunted individuals for years were
unearthed and dealt with, and sometimes even serious conditions, such
as schizophrenia, were cured. ls But what was even more startling was that
many of the patients rapidly moved beyond issues involving their
illnesses and into areas that were uncharted by Western psychology.

One common experience was the reliving of what it was like to be in
the womb. At first Grof thought these were just imagined experiences,
but as the evidence continued to amass he realized that the knowledge of
embryology inherent in the descriptions was often far superior to the
patients’ previous education in the area. Patients accurately described
certain characteristics of the heart sounds of their mother, the nature of
acoustic phenomena in the peritoneal cavity, specific details concerning
blood circulation in the placenta, and even details about the various
cellular and biochemical processes taking place. They also described
important thoughts and feelings their mother had had during pregnancy
and events such as physical traumas she had experienced.


Whenever possible Grof investigated these assertions, and on several
occasions was able to verify them by questioning the mother and other
individuals involved. Psychiatrists, psychologists, and biologists who
experienced prebirth memories during their training for the program (all
the therapists who participated in the study also had to undergo several
sessions of LSD psychotherapy) expressed similar astonishment at the
apparent authenticity of the experiences.”

Most disconcerting of all were those experiences in which the pa-
tient’s consciousness appeared to expand beyond the usual boundaries of
the ego and explore what it was like to be other living things and even
other objects. For example, Grof had one female patient who suddenly
became convinced she had assumed the identity of a female prehistoric
reptile. She not only gave a richly detailed description of what it felt like
to be encapsuled in such a form, but noted that the portion of the male of
the species’ anatomy she found most sexually arousing was a patch of
colored scales on the side of its head. Although the woman had no prior
knowledge of such things, a conversation Grof had with a zoologist later
confirmed that in certain species of reptiles, colored areas on the head do
indeed play an important role as triggers of sexual arousal.

Patients were also able to tap into the consciousness of their relatives
and ancestors. One woman experienced what it was like to be her
mother at the age of three and accurately described a frightening event
that had befallen her mother at the time. The woman also gave a precise
description of the house her mother had lived in as well as the white
pinafore she had been wearing — all details her mother later confirmed
and admitted she had never talked about before. Other patients gave
equally accurate descriptions of events that had befallen ancestors who
had lived decades and even centuries before.

Other experiences included the accessing of racial and collective
memories. Individuals of Slavic origin experienced what it was like to
participate in the conquests of Genghis Khan’s Mongolian hordes, to
dance in trance with the Kalahari bushmen, to undergo the initiation
rites of the Australian aborigines, and to die as sacrificial victims of the
Aztecs. And again the descriptions frequently contained obscure
historical facts and a degree of knowledge that was often completely at
odds with the patient’s education, race, and previous exposure to the
subject. For instance, one uneducated patient gave a richly detailed
account of the techniques involved in the Egyptian practice of embalm-
ing and mummification, including the form and meaning of various

The Holographic Model and Psychology


amulets and sepulchral boxes, a list of the materials used in the fixing of
the mummy cloth, the size and shape of the mummy bandages, and
other esoteric facets of Egyptian funeral services. Other individuals
tuned into the cultures of the Far East and not only gave impressive
descriptions of what it was like to have a Japanese, Chinese, or Tibetan
psyche, but also related various Taoist or Buddhist teachings.

In fact, there did not seem to be any limit to what Grof s LSD subjects
could tap into. They seemed capable of knowing what it was like to be
every animal, and even plant, on the tree of evolution. They could
experience what it was like to be a blood cell, an atom, a thermonuclear
process inside the sun, the consciousness of the entire planet, and even
the consciousness of the entire cosmos. More than that, they displayed
the ability to transcend space and time, and occasionally they related
uncannily accurate precognitive information. In an even stranger vein
they sometimes encountered nonhuman intelligences during their
cerebral travels, discarnate beings, spirit guides from “higher planes of
consciousness,” and other suprahuman entities.

On occasion subjects also traveled to what appeared to be other
universes and other levels of reality. In one particularly unnerving
session a young man suffering from depression found himself in what
seemed to be another dimension. It had an eerie luminescence, and
although he could not see anyone he sensed that it was crowded with
discarnate beings. Suddenly he sensed a presence very close to him, and
to his surprise it began to communicate with him telepathically. It asked
him to please contact a couple who lived in the Moravian city of
Kromeriz and let them know that their son Ladislav was well taken care
of and doing all right. It then gave him the couple’s name, street address,
and telephone number.

The information meant nothing to either Grof or the young man and
seemed totally unrelated to the young man’s problems and treatment.
Still, Grof could not put it out of his mind. “After some hesitation and
with mixed feelings, I finally decided to do what certainly would have
made me the target of my colleagues’ jokes, had they found out,” says
Grof. “I went to the telephone, dialed the number in Kromeriz, and
asked if I could speak with Ladislav, To my astonishment, the woman
on the other side of the line started to cry. When she calmed down, she
told me with a broken voice: ‘Our son is not with us any more; he passed
away, we lost him three weeks ago.’ ” 1IV

In the 1960s Grof was offered a position at the Maryland Psychiatric



Research Center and moved to the United States. The center was also
doing controlled studies of the psychotherapeutic applications of LSD,
and this allowed Grof to continue his research. In addition to examining
the effects of repeated LSD sessions on individuals with various mental
disorders, the center also studied its effects on “normal” volun-
teers — doctors, nurses, painters, musicians, philosophers, scientists,
priests, and theologians. Again Grof found the same kind of phenomena
occurring again and again. It was almost as if LSD provided the human
consciousness with access to a kind of infinite subway system, a
labyrinth of tunnels and byways that existed in the subterranean reaches
of the unconscious, and one that literally connected everything in the
universe with everything else.

After personally guiding over three thousand LSD sessions (each
lasting at least five hours) and studying the records of more than two
thousand sessions conducted by colleagues, Grof became unalterably
convinced that something extraordinary was going on. “After years of
conceptual struggle and confusion, I have concluded that the data from
LSD research indicate an urgent need for a drastic revision of the
existing paradigms for psychology, psychiatry, medicine, and possibly
science in general,” he states. “There is at present little doubt in my mind
that our current understanding of the universe, of the nature of reality,
and particularly of human beings, is superficial, incorrect, and
incomplete.” 16

Grof coined the term transpersonal to describe such phenomena,
experiences in which the consciousness transcends the customary
boundaries of the personality, and in the late 1960s he joined with
several other like-minded professionals, including the psychologist and
educator Abraham Maslow, to found a new branch of psychology called
transpersonal psychology.

If our current way of looking at reality cannot account for transper-
sonal events, what new understanding might take its place? Grof
believes it is the holographic model. As he points out, the essential
characteristics of transpersonal experiences — the feeling that ail
boundaries are illusory, the lack of distinction between part and whole,
and the interconnectedness of all things — are all qualities one would
expect to find in a holographic universe. In addition, he feels the
enfolded nature of space and time in the holographic domain explains
why transpersonal experiences are not bound by the usual spatial or
temporal limitations.

Grof thinks that the almost endless capacity holograms have for

The Holographic Model and Psychology


information storage and retrieval also accounts for the fact that visions,
fantasies, and other “psychological gestalts,” all contain an enormous
amount of information about an individual’s personality. A single image
experienced during an LSD session might contain information about a
person’s attitude toward life in general, a trauma he experienced during
childhood, how much self-esteem he has, how he feels about his parents,
and how he feels about his marriage — all embodied in the overall
metaphor of the scene. Such experiences are holographic in another way,
in that each small part of the scene can also contain an entire
constellation of information. Thus, free association and other analytical
techniques performed on the scene’s mjnis-cule details can call forth an
additional flood of data about the individual involved.

The composite nature of archetypal images can be modeled by the
holographic idea. As Grof observes, holography makes it possible to
build up a sequence of exposures, such as pictures of every member of a
large family, on the same piece of film. When this is done the developed
piece of film will contain the image of an individual that represents not
one member of the family, but all of them at the same time. “These
genuinely composite images represent an exquisite model of a certain
type of transpersonal experience, such as the archetypal images of the
Cosmic Man, Woman, Mother, Father, Lover, Trickster, Fool, or
Martyr,” says Grof. 1T

If each exposure is taken at a slightly different angle, instead of
resulting in a composite picture, the piece of film can be used to create a
series of holographic images that appear to flow into one another. Grof
believes this illustrates another aspect of the visionary experience,
namely, the tendency of countless images to unfold in rapid sequence,
each one appearing and then dissolving into the next as if by magic. He
thinks holography’s success at modeling so many different aspects of the
archetypal experience suggests that there is a deep link between
holographic processes and the way archetypes are produced.

Indeed, Grof feels that evidence of a hidden, holographic order
surfaces virtually every time one experiences a nonordinary state of

Bohm’s concept of the unfolded and enfolded orders and the idea that
certain important aspects of reality are not accessible to experience and
study under ordinary circumstances are of direct relevance for the un-



derstanding of unusual states of consciousness. Individuals who have
experienced various conordinary states of consciousness, including
we)i-educated and sophisticated scientists from various disciplines,
frequently report that they entered hidden domains of reality that
seemed to be authentic and in some sense implicit in, and supraordinated
to, everyday reality. 18

Holotropic Therapy

Perhaps Grofs most remarkable discovery is that the same phenomena
reported by individuals who have taken LSD can also be experienced
without resorting to drugs of any kind. To this end, Grof and his wife,
Christina, have developed a simple, nondrug technique for inducing
these kolotropic, or nonordinary, states of consciousness. They define a
holotropic state of consciousness as one in which it is possible to access
the holographic labyrinth that connects all aspects of existence. These
include one’s biological, psychological, racial, and spiritual history, the
past, present, and future of the world, other levels of reality, and all the
other experiences already discussed in the context of the LSD

The Grofs call their technique holotropic therapy and use only rapid
and controlled breathing, evocative music, and massage and body work,
to induce altered states of consciousness. To date, thousands of
individuals have attended their workshops and report experiences that
are every bit as spectacular and emotionally profound as those described
by subjects of Grofs previous work on LSD. Grof describes his current
work and gives a detailed account of his methods in his book The
Adventure of Self-Discovery.

Vortices of Thought and Multiple Personalities

A number of researchers have used the holographic model to explain
various aspects of the thinking process itself. For example, New York
psychiatrist Edgar A. Levenson believes the hologram provides a valu-
able model for understanding the sudden and transformative changes
individuals often experience during psychotherapy. He bases his con-

The Holographic Model and Psychology


elusion on the fact that such changes take place no matter what tech-
nique or psychoanalytic approach the therapist uses. Hence, he feels all
psychoanalytic approaches are purely ceremonial, and change is due to
something else entirely.

Levenson believes that something is resonance. A therapist always
knows when therapy is going well, he observes. There is a strong feeling
that the pieces of an elusive pattern are all about to come together. The
therapist is not saying anything new to the patient, but instead seems to
be resonating with something the patient already unconsciously knows:
“It is as though a huge, three-dimensional, spatially coded representation
of the patient’s experience develops in the therapy, running through
every aspect of his life, his history and his participation with the
therapist. At some point there is a kind of ‘overload’ and everything falls
into place.” 19

Levenson believes these three-dimensional representations of expe-
rience are holograms buried deep in the patient’s psyche, and a reso-
nance of feeling between the therapist and patient causes them to emerge
in a process similar to the way a laser of a certain frequency causes an
image made with a laser of the same frequency to emerge from a
multiple image hologram. “The holographic model suggests a radically
new paradigm which might give us a fresh way of perceiving and
connecting clinical phenomena which have always been known to be
important, but were relegated to the ‘art’ of psychotherapy,” says
Levenson. “It offers a possible theoretical template for change and a
practical hope of clarifying psychotherapeutic technique.” 20

Psychiatrist David Shainberg, associate dean of the Postgraduate
Psychoanalytic Program at the William Alanson White Institute of
Psychiatry in New York, feels Bohm’s assertion that thoughts are like
vortices in a river should be taken literally and explains why our
attitudes and beliefs sometimes become fixed and resistant to change.
Studies have shown that vortices are often remarkably stable. The Great
Red Spot of Jupiter, a giant vortex of gas over 25,000 miles wide, has
remained intact since it was first discovered 300 years ago. Shainberg
believes this same tendency toward stability is what causes certain
vortices of thought (our ideas and opinions) to become occasionally
cemented in our consciousness.

He feeis the virtual permanence of some vortices is often detrimental
to our growth as human beings. A particularly powerful vortex can
dominate our behavior and inhibit our ability to assimilate new ideas and
information. It can cause us to become repetitious, create block-



ages in the creative flow of our consciousness, keep us from seeing the
wholeness of ourselves, and make us feel disconnected from our species.
Shainberg believes that vortices may even explain things like the nuclear
arms race: “Look at the nuclear arms race as a vortex arising out of the
greed of human beings who are isolated in their separate selves and do
not feel the connection to other human beings. They are also feeling a
peculiar emptiness and become greedy for everything they ean get to fill
themselves. Hence nuclear industries proliferate because they provide
large amounts of money and the greed is so extensive that such people
do not care what might happen from their actions.” 81

Like Bohm, Shainberg believes our consciousness is constantly un-
folding out of the implicate order, and when we allow the same vortices
to take form repeatedly he feels we are erecting a barrier between
ourselves and the endless positive and novel interactions we could be
having with this infinite source of all being. To catch a glimmer of what
we are missing, he suggests we look at a child. Children have not yet had
the time to form vortices, and this is reflected in the open and flexible
way they interact with the world. According to Shainberg the sparkling
aliveness of a child expresses the very essence of the
unfold-ing-enfolding nature of consciousness when it is unimpeded.

If you want to become aware of your own frozen vortices of thought,
Shainberg recommends you pay close attention to the way you behave in
conversation. When people with set beliefs converse with others, they
try to justify their identities by espousing and defending their opinions.
Their judgments seldom change as a result of any new information they
encounter, and they show little interest in allowing any real
conversational interaction to take place. A person who is open to the
flowing nature of consciousness is more willing to see the frozen
condition of the relationships imposed by such vortices of thought. They
are committed to exploring conversational interactions, rather than
endlessly repeating a static litany of opinions. “Human response and
articulation of that response, feedback of reactions to that response and
the clarifying of the relationships between different responses, are the
way human beings participate in the flow of the implicate order,” says
Shainberg. 25

Another psychological phenomena that bears several earmarks of the
implicate is multiple personality disorder, or MPD. MPD is a bizarre
syndrome in which two or more distinct personalities inhabit a

The Holographic Model and Psychology


single body. Victims of the disorder, or “multiples,” often have no
awareness of their condition. They do not realize that control of their
body is being passed back and forth between different personalities and
instead feel they are suffering from some kind of amnesia, confusion, or
black-out spells. Most multiples average between eight to thirteen
personalities, although so-called super-multiples may have more than a
hundred subpersonalities.

One of the most telling statistics regarding multiples is that 97 percent
of them have had a history of severe childhood trauma, often in the form
of monstrous psychological, physical, and sexual abuse. This has led
many researchers to conclude that becoming a multiple is the psyche’s
way of coping with extraordinary and soul-crushing pain. By dividing
up into one or more personalities the psyche is able to parcel out the pain,
in a way, and have several personalities bear what would be too much
for just one personality to withstand.

In this sense becoming a multiple may be the ultimate example of
what Bohm means by fragmentation. It is interesting to note that when
the psyche fragments itself, it does not become a collection of broken
and jagged-edged shards, but a collection of smaller wholes, complete
and self-sustaining with their own traits, motives, and desires. Although
these wholes are not identical copies of the original personality, they are
related to the dynamics of the original personality, and this in itself
suggests that some kind of holographic process is involved.

Bohm’s assertion that fragmentation always eventually proves de-
structive is also apparent in the syndrome. Although becoming a mul-
tiple allows a person to survive an otherwise unendurable childhood, it
brings with it a host of unpleasant side effects. These may include
depression, anxiety and panic attacks, phobias, heart and respiratory
problems, unexplained nausea, migrainelike headaches, tendencies to-
ward self-mutilation, and many other mental and physical disorders.
Startlingly, but regular as clockwork, most multiples are diagnosed
when they are between the ages of twenty-eight and thirty-five, a
“coincidence” that suggests that some inner alarm system may be going
off at that age, warning them that it is imperative they are diagnosed and
thus obtain the help they need. This idea seems borne out by the fact that
multiples who reach their forties before they are diagnosed frequently
report having the sense that if they did not seek help soon, any chance of
recovery would be lost. 13 Despite the tempo-



rary advantages the tortured psyche gains by fragmenting itself, it is
clear that mental and physical well-being, and perhaps even survival,
still depend on wholeness.

Another unusual feature of MPD is that each of a multiple’s person-
alities possesses a different brain-wave pattern. This is surprising, for as
Frank Putnam, a National Institutes of Health psychiatrist who has
studied this phenomenon, points out, normally a person’s brain-wave
pattern does not change even in states of extreme emotion. Brainwave
patterns are not the only thing that varies from personality to personality.
Blood flow patterns, muscle tone, heart rate, posture, and even allergies
can ail change as a multiple shifts from one self to the next.

Since brain-wave patterns are not confined to any single neuron or
group of neurons, but are a global property of the brain, this too suggests
that some kind of holographic process may be at work. Just as a
multiple-image hologram can store and project dozens of whole scenes,
perhaps the brain hologram can store and call forth a similar multitude
of whole personalities. In other words, perhaps what we call “self” is
also a hologram, and when the brain of a multiple clicks from one
holographic self to the next, these slide -projectorlike shuttlings are
reflected in the global changes that take place in brain-wave activity as
well as in the body in general (see fig. 10). The physiological changes
that occur as a multiple shifts from one personality to the next also have
profound implications for the relationship between mind and health, and
will be discussed at greater length in the next chapter.

A Flaw in the Fabric of Reality

Another of Jung’s great contributions was defining the concept of
synehronicity. As mentioned in the introduction, synchronicities are
coincidences that are so unusual and so meaningful they could hardly be
attributed to chance alone. Each of us has experienced a synehronicity at
some point in our lives, such as when we learn a strange new word and
then hear it used in a news broadcast a few hours later, or when we think
about an obscure subject and then notice other people talking about it. A
few years back I experienced a series of synchronicities involving

The Holographic Modei and Psychology


FIGURE 10. The brain-wave patterns of
four subpersonalities in an individual suffering from multiple personality disorder.
Is it possible that the brain uses holographic principles to store the vast amount of
information necessary to house dozens and even hundreds of personalities in a
single body? {Redrawn by the author from original art in an article by Bennett G.
Braun in the American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis)

the rodeo showman Buffalo Bill. Occasionally, while doing a modest
workout in the morning before I start writing, I turn on the television.
One morning in January 1983, 1 was doing push-ups while a game show
was on, and I suddenly found myself shouting out the name “Buffalo
Bill!” At first I was puzzled by my outburst, but then I realized the
game-show host had asked the question “What other name was William
Frederick Cody known by?” Although I had not been paying conscious
attention to the show, for some reason my unconscious mind had zeroed
in on this question and had answered it. At the time 1 did not think much
of the occurrence and went about my day. A few hours later a friend
telephoned and asked me if I could settle a friendly argument he was
having concerning a piece of theater trivia. I offered to try, whereupon
my friend asked, “Is it true that John Barrymore’s dying words were,
‘Aren’t you the illegitimate son of Buffalo Bill?’ ” I thought this second
encounter with Buffalo Bill was odd but still chalked it up to
coincidence until later that day when a Smithsonian magazine arrived in
the mail, and I opened it. One of the lead articles was titled “The Last of
the Great Scouts Is Back Again.” It was about… you guessed it: Buffalo
Bill. (Incidentally, I



was unable to answer my friend’s trivia question and still have no idea
whether they were Barrymore’s dying words or not)

As incredible as this experience was, the only thing that seemed
meaningful about it was its improbable nature. There is, however,
another kind of synchronicity that is noteworthy not only because of its
improbability, but because of its apparent relationship to events taking
place deep in the human psyche. The classic example of this is Jung’s
scarab story. Jung was treating a woman whose staunchly rational
approach to life made it difficult for her to benefit from therapy. After a
number of frustrating sessions the woman told Jung about a dream
involving a scarab beetle. Jung knew that in Egyptian mythology the
scarab represented rebirth and wondered if the woman’s unconscious
mind was symbolically announcing that she was about to undergo some
kind of psychological rebirth. He was just about to tell her this when
something tapped on the window, and he looked up to see a gold-green
scarab on the other side of the glass (it was the only time a scarab beetle
had ever appeared at Jung’s window). He opened the window and
allowed the scarab to fly into the room as he presented his interpretation
of the dream. The woman was so stunned that she tempered her
excessive rationality, and from that point on her response to therapy

Jung encountered many such meaningful coincidences during his
psychotherapeutic work and noticed that they almost always accompa-
nied periods of emotional intensity and transformation: fundamental
changes in belief, sudden and new insights, deaths, births, even changes
in profession. He also noticed that they tended to peak when the new
realization or insight was just about to surface in a patient’s
consciousness. As his ideas became more widely known, other thera-
pists began reporting their own experiences with synchronicity.

For example, Zurich-based psychiatrist Carl Alfred Meier, a longtime
associate of Jung’s, tells of a synchronicity that spanned many years. An
American woman suffering from serious depression traveled all the way
from Wuchang, China, to be treated by Meier. She was a surgeon and had
headed a mission hospital in Wuchang for twenty years. She had also
become involved in the culture and was an expert in Chinese philosophy.
During the course of her therapy she told Meier of a dream in which she
had seen the hospital with one of its wings destroyed. Because her
identity was so intertwined with the hospital, Meier felt her dream was
telling her she was losing her sense of self, her American identity, and
that was the cause of her depression. He

The Holographic Model and Psychology


advised her to return to the States, and when she did her depression
quickly vanished, just as he had predicted. Before she departed he also
had her do a detailed sketch of the crumbling hospital.

Years later the Japanese attacked China and bombed Wuchang
Hospital. The woman sent Meier a copy of Life magazine containing a
double -page photograph of the partially destroyed hospital, and it was
identical to the drawing she had produced nine years earlier. The
symbolic and highly personal message of her dream had somehow
spilled beyond the boundaries of her psyche and into physical reality, 24

Because of their striking nature, Jung became convinced that such
synchronicities were not chance occurrences, but were in fact related to
the psychological processes of the individuals who experienced them.
Since he could not conceive how an occurrence deep in the psyehe could
cause an event or series of events in the physical world, at least in the
classical sense, he proposed that some new principle must be involved,
an decimal connecting principle hitherto unknown to science.

When Jung first advanced this idea, most physicists did not take it
seriously {although one eminent physicist of the time, Wolfgang Pauli,
felt it was important enough to coauthor a book with Jung on the subject
entitled The Interpretation and Nature of the Psyche). But now that the
existence of nonlocal connections has been established, some physicists
are giving Jung’s idea another look.” Physicist Paul Davies states,
“These non-local quantum effects are indeed a form of synchronicity in
the sense that they establish a connection — more precisely a
correlation — between events for which any form of causal linkage is
forbidden.” 25

Another physicist who takes synchronicity seriously is F. David Peat.
Peat believes that Jungian-type synchronicities are not only real, but
offer further evidence of the implicate order. As we have seen, according
to Bohm the apparent separateness of consciousness and matter is an
illusion, an artifact that occurs only after both have unfolded into the
explicate world of objects and sequential time. If there is no division
between mind and matter in the implicate, the ground from which all
things spring, then it is not unusual to expect that reality might still be
shot through with traces of this deep connectivity. Peat believes that
synchronicities are therefore “flaws” in the

As has been mentioned, nonlocal effects are not due to a cause-and-effect relationship and ate
therefore acausal.



fabric of reality, momentary fissures that allow us a brief glimpse of the
immense and unitary order underlying all of nature.

Put another way, Peat thinks that synchronicities reveal the absence of
division between the physical world and our inner psychological reality.
Thus the relative scarcity of synchronous experiences in our lives shows
not only the extent to which we have fragmented ourselves from the
general field of consciousness, but also the degree to which we have
sealed ourselves off from the infinite and dazzling potential of the
deeper orders of mind and reality. According to Peat, when we
experience a synchrony city, what we are really experiencing “is the
human mind operating, for a moment, in its true order and extending
throughout society and nature, moving through orders of increasing
subtlety, reaching past the source of mind and matter into creativity
itself.” 26

This is an astounding notion. Virtually all of our commonsense
prejudices about the world are based on the premise that subjective and
objective reality are very much separate. That is why synchronicities
seem so baffling and inexplicable to us. But if there is ultimately no
division between the physical world and our inner psychological
processes, then we must be prepared to change more than just our
commonsense understanding of the universe, for the implications are

One implication is that objective reality is more like a dream than we
have previously suspected. For example, imagine dreaming that you are
sitting at a table and having an evening meal with your boss and his wife.
As you know from experience, all the various props in the dream — the
table, the chairs, the plates, and salt and pepper shakers — appear to be
separate objects. Imagine also that you experience a synchronicity in the
dream; perhaps you are served a particularly unpleasant dish, and when
you ask the waiter what it is, he tells you that the name of the dish is
Your Boss. Realizing that the unpleasant A ness of the dish betrays your
true feelings about your boss, you become embarrassed and wonder how
an aspect of your “inner” self has managed to spill over into the “outer”
reality of the scene you are dreaming. Of course, as soon as you wake up
you realize the synchronicity was not so strange at all, for there was
really no division between your “inner” self and the “outer” reality of the
dream. Similarly, you realize that the apparent separateness of the
various objects in the dream was also an illusion, for everything was
produced by a

The Holographic Model and Psychology _


deeper and more fundamental order — the unbroken wholeness of your
own unconscious mind.

If there is no division between the mental and physical worlds, these
same qualities are also true of objective reality. According to Peat, this
does not mean the material universe is an illusion, because both the
implicate and the explicate play a role in creating reality. Nor does it
mean that individuality is iost, any more than the image of a rose is lost
once it is recorded in a piece of holographic film. It simply means that
we are again like vortices in a river, unique but inseparable from the
flow of nature. Or as Peat puts it, “the self lives on but as one aspect of
the more subtle movement that involves the order of the whole of
consciousness.” 27

And so we have come full circle, from the discovery that conscious-
ness contains the whole of objective reality — the entire history of
biological life on the planet, the world’s religions and mythologies, and
the dynamics of both blood cells and stars — to the discovery that the
material universe can also contain within its warp and weft the inner-
most processes of consciousness. Such is the nature of the deep con-
nectivity that exists between all things in a holographic universe. In the
next chapter we will explore how this connectivity, as well as other
aspects of the holographic idea, affect our current understanding of

I Sing the Body Holographic

You will hardly know who 1 am or what I mean. But
I shall be good health to you nevertheless. . . .

—Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself*

A sixty-one-year-old man we’ll call Frank was diagnosed as having an
almost always fatal form of throat cancer and told he had less than a 5
percent chance of surviving. His weight had dropped from 130 to 98
pounds. He was extremely weak, could barely swallow his own saliva,
and was having trouble breathing. Indeed, his doctors had debated
whether to give him radiation therapy at all, because there was a distinct
possibility the treatment would only add to his discomfort without
significantly increasing his chances for survival. They decided to
proceed anyway.

Then, to Frank’s great good fortune, Dr. 0. Carl Simonton, a radiation
oncologist and medical director of the Cancer Counseling and Research
Center in Dallas, Texas, was asked to participate in his treatment
Simonton suggested that Frank himself could influence the course of his
own disease. Simonton then taught Frank a number of relaxation and
mental-imagery techniques he and his colleagues had developed. From
that point on, three times a day, Frank pictured the radiation he received
as consisting of millions of tiny bullets of energy bombarding his cells.
He also visualized his cancer cells as weaker and


I Sing the Body Holographic


more confused than his norma) cells, and thus unable to repair the
damage they suffered. Then he visualized his body’s white blood cells,
the soldiers of the immune system, coming in, swarming over the dead
and dying cancer cells, and carrying them to his liver and kidneys to be
flushed out of his body.

The results were dramatic and far exceeded what usually happened in
such cases when patients were treated solely with radiation. The
radiation treatments worked like magic. Frank experienced almost none
of the negative side effects — damage to skin and mucous mem-
branes — that normally accompanied such therapy. He regained his lost
weight and his strength, and in a mere two months all signs of his cancer
had vanished. Simonton believes Frank’s remarkable recovery was due
in large part to his daily regimen of visualization exercises.

In a follow-up study, Simonton and his colleagues taught their
mental-imagery techniques to 159 patients with cancers considered
medically incurable. The expected survival time for such a patient is
twelve months. Four years later 63 of the patients were still alive. Of
those, 14 showed no evidence of disease, the cancers were regressing in
12, and in 17 the disease was stable. The average survival time of the
group as a whole was 24.4 months, over twice as long as the national
norm. 1

Simonton has since conducted a number of similar studies, all with
positive results. Despite such promising findings, his work is still
considered controversial. For instance, critics argue that the individuals
who participate in Simonton’s studies are not “average” patients. Many
of them have sought Simonton out for the express purpose of learning his
techniques, and this shows that they already have an extraordinary
fighting spirit. Nonetheless, many researchers find Simonton’s results
compelling enough to support his work, and Simonton himself has set up
the Simonton Cancer Center, a successful research and treatment facility
in Pacific Palisades, California, devoted to teaching imagery techniques
to patients who are fighting various illnesses. The therapeutic use of
imagery has also captured the imagination of the public, and a recent
survey revealed that it was the fourth most frequently used alternative
treatment for cancer.”

How is it that an image formed in the mind can have an effect on
something as formidable as an incurable cancer? Not surprisingly the
holographic theory of the brain can be used to explain this phenomenon
as well. Psychologist Jeanne Achterberg, director of research and
rehabilitation science at the University of Texas Health Science Center



in Dallas, Texas, and one of the scientists who helped develop the
imagery techniques Simonton uses, believes it is the holographic imag-
ing capabilities of the brain that provide the key.

As has been noted, all experiences are ultimately just
neurophysio-logical processes taking place in the brain. According to
the holographic model the reason we experience some things, such as
emotions, as internal realities and others, such as the songs of birds and
the barking of dogs, as external realities is because that is where the
brain localizes them when it creates the internal hologram that we
experience as reality. However, as we have also seen, the brain cannot
always distinguish between what is “out there” and what it believes to be
“out there,” and that is why amputees sometimes have phantom limb
sensations. Put another way, in a brain that operates holograph-ically,
the remembered image of a thing can have as much impact on the senses
as the thing itself.

It can also have an equally powerful effect on the body’s physiology, a
state of affairs that has been experienced firsthand by anyone who has
ever felt their heart race after imagining hugging a loved one. Or anyone
who has ever felt their paims grow sweaty after conjuring up the
memory of some unusually frightening experience. At first glance the
fact that the body cannot always distinguish between an imagined event
and a real one may seem strange, but when one takes the holographic
model into account — a model that asserts that all experiences, whether
real or imagined, are reduced to the same common language of
holographically organized wave forms — the situation becomes much
less puzzling. Or as Achterberg puts it, “When images are regarded in
the holographic manner, their omnipotent influence on physical
function logically follows. The image, the behavior, and the
physiological concomitants are a unified aspect of the same phenome-

Bohm uses his idea of the implicate order, the deeper and nonlocal
level of existence from which our entire universe springs, to echo the
sentiment “Every action starts from an intention in the implicate order.
The imagination is already the creation of the form; it already has the
intention and the germs of all the movements needed to carry it out And
it affects the body and so on, so that as creation takes place in that way
from the subtler levels of the implicate order, it goes through them until
it manifests in the explicate.” 4 In other words, in the implicate order, as
in the brain itself, imagination and reality are ultimately
indistinguishable, and it should therefore come as no sur-

I Sing the Body Holographic


prise to us that images in the mind can ultimately manifest as realities in
the physical body.

Achterberg found that the physiological effects produced through the
use of imagery are not only powerful, but can also be extremely specific.
For example, the term white blood cell actually refers to a number of
different kinds of cell. In one study, Achterberg decided to see if she
could train individuals to increase the number of only one particular type
of white blood cell in their body. To do this she taught one group of
college students how to image a cell known as a neutrophil, the major
constituent of the white blood cell population. She trained a second
group to image T-cells, a more specialized kind of white blood cell. At
the end of the study the group that learned the neutrophil imagery had a
significant increase in the number of neutrophils in their body, but no
change in the number of T-cells. The group that learned to image T-cells
had a significant increase in the number of that kind of cell, but the
number of neutrophils in their body remained the same. 3

Achterberg says that belief is also critical to a person’s health. As she
points out, virtually everyone who has had contact with the medical
world knows at least one story of a patient who was sent home to die, but
because they “believed” otherwise, they astounded their doctors by
completely recovering. In her fascinating book Imagery in Healing she
describes several of her own encounters with such cases. In one, a
woman was comatose on admission, paralyzed, and diagnosed with a
massive brain tumor. She underwent surgery to “debulk” her tumor
(remove as much as is safely possible), but because she was considered
close to death, she was sent home without receiving either radiation or

Instead of promptly dying, the woman became stronger by the day. As
her biofeedback therapist, Achterberg was able to monitor the woman’s
progress, and by the end of sixteen months the woman showed no
evidence of cancer. Why? Although the woman was intelligent in a
worldly sense, she was only moderately educated and did not really
know the meaning of the word tumor — or the death sentence it imparted.
Hence, she did not believe she was going to die and overcame her cancer
with the same confidence and determination she’d used to overcome
every other illness in her life, says Achterberg. When Achterberg saw
her last, the woman no longer had any traces of paralysis, had thrown
away her leg braces and her cane, and had even been out dancing a
couple of times. 6



Breznitz found that the stress hormone levels in the soldiers’ blood
always reflected their estimates and not the actual distance they had
marched. In other words, their bodies responded not to reality, but to
what they were imaging as reality.

According to Dr. Charles A. Garfield, a former National Aeronautics
and Space Administration (NASA) researcher and current president of
the Performance Sciences Institute in Berkeley, California, the Soviets
have extensively researched the relationship between imagery and
physical performance. In one study a phalanx of world-class Soviet
athietes was divided into four groups. The first group spent 100 percent
of their training time in training. The second spent 75 percent of their
time training and 25 percent of their time visualizing the exact move-
ments and accomplishments they wanted to achieve in their sport. The
third spent 50 percent of their time training and 50 percent visualizing,
and the fourth spent 25 percent training and 75 percent visualizing.
Unbelievably, at the 1980 Winter Games in Lake Placid, New York, the
fourth group showed the greatest improvement in performance, fol-
lowed by groups three, two, and one, in that order. 11

Garfield, who has spent hundreds of hours interviewing athletes and
sports researchers around the world, says that the Soviets have incor-
porated sophisticated imagery techniques into many of their athletic
programs and that they believe mental images act as precursors in the
process of generating neuromuscular impulses. Garfield believes im-
agery works because movement is recorded holographically in the brain.
In his book Peak Performance: Mental Training Techniques of the
World’s Greatest Athletes, he states, “These images are holographic and
function primarily at the subliminal level. The holographic imaging
mechanism enables you to quickly solve spatial problems such as
assembling a complex machine, choreographing a dance routine, or
running visual images of plays through your mind.” 12

Australian psychologist Alan Richardson has obtained similar results
with basketball players. He took three groups of basketball players and
tested their ability to make free throws. Then he instructed the first
group to spend twenty minutes a day practicing free throws. He told the
second group not to practice, and had the third group spend twenty
minutes a day visualizing that they were shooting perfect baskets. As
might be expected, the group that did nothing showed no improvement
The first group improved 24 percent, but through the power of imagery
alone, the third group improved an astonishing 23 percent, almost as
much as the group that practiced. 13

1 Sing the Body Holographic _

The Lack of Division Between Health and Illness

Physician Larry Dossey believes that imagery is not the only tool the
holographic mind can use to effect changes in the body. Another is
simply the recognition of the unbroken wholeness of all things. As
Dossey observes, we have a tendency to view illness as external to us.
Disease comes from without and besieges us, upsetting our well-being.
But if space and time, and all other things in the universe, are truly
inseparable, then we cannot make a distinction between health and

How can we put this knowledge to practical use in our lives? When
we stop seeing illness as something separate and instead view it as part
of a larger whole, as a milieu of behavior, diet, sleep, exercise patterns,
and various other relationships with the world at large, we often get
better, says Dossey. As evidence he calls attention to a study in which
chronic headache sufferers were asked to keep a diary of the frequency
and severity of their headaches. Although the record was intended to be
a first step in preparing the headache sufferers for further treatment,
most of the subjects found that when they began to keep a diary, their
headaches disappeared ! M

In another experiment cited by Dossey, a group of epileptic children
and their families were videotaped as they interacted with one an
other. Occasionally, there were emotional outbursts during the ses
sions, which were often followed by actual seizures. When the children
were shown the tapes and saw the relationship between these emo
tional events and their seizures, they became almost seizure-free. 15
Why’.’ By keeping a diary or watching a videotape, the subjects were
able to see their condition in relationship to the larger pattern of their
lives. When this happens, illness can no longer be viewed “as an” .’
intruding disease originating elsewhere, but as part of a process of
living which can accurately be described as an unbroken whole,” says
Dossey. “When our focus is toward a principle of relatedness and
oneness, and away from fragmentation and isolation, health en
sues.” 16 “” —J

Dossey feels the word patient is as misleading as the word particle.
Instead of being separate and fundamentally isolated biological units,
we are essentially dynamic processes and patterns that are no more
analyzable into parts than are electrons. More than this, we are con-
nected, connected to the forces that create both sickness and health,



to the beliefs of our society, to the attitudes of our friends, our family,
and our doctors, and to the images, beliefs, and even the very words we
use to apprehend the universe.

In a holographic universe we are also connected to our bodies, and in
the preceding pages we have seen some of the ways these connections
manifest themselves. But there are others, perhaps even an infinity of
others. As Pribram states, “If indeed every part of our body is a
reflection of the whole, then there must be all kinds of mechanisms to
control what’s going on. Nothing is firm at this point” 17 Given our
ignorance in the matter, instead of asking how the mind controls the
body holographic, perhaps a more important question is, What is the
extent of this control? Are there any limitations on it, and if so, what are
they? That is the question to which we now turn our attention.

The Healing Power of Nothing at All

Another medical phenomenon that provides us with a tantalizing
glimpse of the control the mind has over the body is the placebo effect. A
placebo is any medical treatment that has no specific action on the body
but is given either to humor a patient, or as a control in a double-blind
experiment, that is, a study in which one group of individuals is given a
real treatment and another group is given a fake treatment. In such
experiments neither the researchers nor the individuals being tested
know which group they are in so that the effects of the real treatment can
be assessed more accurately. Sugar pills are often used as placebos in
drug studies. So is saline solution (distilled water with salt in it),
although placebos need not always be drugs. Many believe that any
medical benefit derived from crystals, copper bracelets, and other
nontraditional remedies is also due to the placebo effect.

Even surgery has been used as a placebo. In the 1 950s, angina pectoris,
recurrent pain in the chest and left arm due to decreased blood flow to the
heart, was commonly treated with surgery. Then some resourceful
doctors decided to conduct an experiment Rather than perform the
customary surgery, which involved tying off the mammary artery, they
cut patients open and then simply sewed them back up again. The
patients who received the sham surgery reported just as much relief as
the patients who had the full surgery. The full

1 Sing the Body Holographic


surgery, as it turned out, was only producing a placebo effect None-
theless, the success of the sham surgery indicates that somewhere deep
in all of us we have the ability to control angina pectoris.

And that is not all. In the last half century the placebo effect has been
extensively researched in hundreds of different studies around the world.
We now know that on average 35 percent of all people who receive a
given placebo will experience a significant effect although this number
can vary greatly from situation to situation. In addition to angina
pectoris, conditions that have proved responsive to placebo treatment
include migraine headaches, allergies, fever, the common cold, acne,
asthma, warts, various kinds of pain, nausea and seasickness, peptic
ulcers, psychiatric syndromes such as depression and anxiety,
rheumatoid and degenerative arthritis, diabetes, radiation sickness,
Parkinsonism, multiple sclerosis, and cancer.

Clearly these range from the not so serious to the life threatening, but
placebo effects on even the mildest conditions may involve physiological
changes that are near miraculous. Take, for example, the lowly wart.
Warts are a small tumorous growth on the skin caused by a virus. They
are also extremely easy to cure through the use of placebos, as is
evidenced by the nearly endless folk rituals — ritual itself being a kind of
placebo — that are used by various cultures to get rid of them. Lewis
Thomas, president emeritus of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
in New York, tells of one physician who regularly rid his patients of
warts simply by painting a harmless purple dye on them. Thomas feels
that explaining this small miracle by saying it’s just the unconscious
mind at work doesn’t begin to do the placebo effect justice. “If my
unconscious can figure out how to manipulate the mechanisms needed
for getting around that virus, and for deploying all the various cells in the
correct order for tissue rejection, then all I have to say is that my
unconscious is a lot further along than I am,” he states. 19

The effectiveness of a placebo in any given circumstance also varies
greatly. In nine double-blind studies comparing placebos to aspirin,
placebos proved to be 54 percent as effective as the actual analgesic. 20
Prom this one might expect that placebos would be even less effective
when compared to a much stronger painkiller such as morphine, but this
is not the case. In six double -blind studies placebos were found to be 56
percent as effective as morphine in relieving pain! 21

Why? One factor that can affect the effectiveness of a placebo is the
method in which it is given. Injections are generally perceived as more



potent than pills, and hence giving a placebo in an injection can enhance
its effectiveness. Similarly, capsules are often seen as more effective
than tablets, and even the size, shape, and color of a pill can play a role.
In a study designed to determine the suggestive value of a pill’s color,
researchers found that people tend to view yellow or orange pills as
mood manipulators, either stimulants or depressants. Dark red pills are
assumed to be sedatives; lavender pills, hallucinogens; and white pills,
painkillers. 22

Another factor is the attitude the doctor conveys when he prescribes
the placebo. Dr. David Sobel, a placebo specialist at Kaiser Hospital,
California, relates the story of a doctor treating an asthma patient who
was having an unusually difficult time keeping his bronchial tubes open.
The doctor ordered a sample of a potent new medicine from a
pharmaceutical company and gave it to the man. Within minutes the
man showed spectacular improvement and breathed more easily. How-
ever, the next time he had an attack, the doctor decided to see what
would happen if he gave the man a placebo. This time the man com-
plained that there must be something wrong with the prescription
because it didn’t completely eliminate his breathing difficulty. This
convinced the doctor that the sample drug was indeed a potent new
asthma medication — until he received a letter from the pharmaceutical
company informing him that instead of the new drug, they had acci-
dentally sent him a placebo.’ Apparently it was the doctor’s unwitting
enthusiasm for the first placebo, and not the second, that accounted for
the discrepancy. 23

In terras of the holographic model, the man’s remarkable response to
the placebo asthma medication can again be explained by the mind/
body’s ultimate inability to distinguish between an imagined reality and
a real one. The man believed he was being given a powerful new asthma
drug, and this belief had as dramatic a physiological effect on his lungs
as if he had been given a real drug. Achterberg’s warning that the neural
holograms that impact on our health are varied and multifaceted is also
underscored by the fact that even something as subtle as the doctor’s
slightly different attitude (and perhaps body language) while
administering the two placebos was enough to cause one to work and the
other to fail. It is clear from this that even information received
subliminally can contribute greatly to the beliefs and mental images that
impact on our health. One wonders how many drugs have worked (or
not worked) because of the attitude the doctor conveyed while
administering them.

1 Sing the Body Holographic


Tumors That Melt Like Snowballs on a Hot Stove

Understanding the role such factors play in a placebo’s effectiveness is
important, for it shows how our ability to control the body holographic is
molded by our beliefs. Our minds have the power to get rid of warts, to
clear our bronchial tubes, and to mimic the painkilling ability of
morphine, but because we are unaware that we possess the power, we
must be fooled into using it. This might almost be comic if it were not
for the tragedies that often result from our ignorance of our own power.

No incident better illustrates this than a now famous case reported by
psychologist Bruno Klopfer. Klopfer was treating a man named Wright
who had advanced cancer of the lymph nodes. All standard treatments
had been exhausted, and Wright appeared to have little time left. His
neck, armpits, chest, abdomen, and groin were filled with tumors the size
of oranges, and his spleen and liver were so enlarged that two quarts of
milky fluid had to be drained out of his chest every day.

But Wright did not want to die. He had heard about an exciting new
drug called Krebiozen, and he begged his doctor to let him try it. At first
his doctor refused because the drug was only being tried on people with
a life expectancy of at least three months. But Wright was so unrelenting
in his entreaties, his doctor finally gave in. He gave Wright an injection
of Krebiozen on Friday, but in his heart of hearts he did not expect
Wright to last the weekend. Then the doctor went home.

To his surprise, on the following Monday he found Wright out of bed
and walking around. Klopfer reported that his tumors had “melted like
snowballs on a hot stove” and were half their original size. This was a
far more rapid decrease in size than even the strongest X-ray treatments
could have accomplished. Ten days after Wright’s first Krebiozen
treatment, he left the hospital and was, as far as his doctors could tell,
cancer free. When he had entered the hospital he had needed an oxygen
mask to breathe, but when he left he was well enough to fly his own
plane at 12,000 feet with no discomfort.

Wright remained well for about two months, but then articles began to
appear asserting that Krebiozen actually had no effect on cancer of the
lymph nodes. Wright, who was rigidly logical and scientific in his
thinking, became very depressed, suffered a relapse, and was readmitted
to the hospital. This time his physician decided to try an experi-



ment. He told Wright that Krebiozen was every bit as effective as it had
seemed, but that some of the initial supplies of the drug had deteriorated
during shipping. He explained, however, that he had a new highly
concentrated version of the drug and could treat Wright with this. Of
course the physician did not have a new version of the drug and intended
to inject Wright with plain water. To create the proper atmosphere he
even went through an elaborate procedure before injecting Wright with
the placebo.

Again the results were dramatic. Tumor masses meited, chest fluid
vanished, and Wright was quickly back on his feet and feeling great. He
remained symptom-free for another two months, but then the American
Medical Association announced that a nationwide study of Krebiozen
had found the drug worthless in the treatment of cancer. This time
Wright’s faith was completely shattered. His cancer blossomed anew
and he died two days later. 34

Wright’s story is tragic, but it contains a powerful message: When we
are fortunate enough to bypass our disbelief and tap the healing forces
within us, we can cause tumors to melt away overnight

In the case of Krebiozen only one person was involved, but there are
similar cases involving many more people. Take a chemotherapeutic
agent called cis-platinum. When ess-platinum first became available it,
too, was touted as a wonder drug, and 75 percent of the people who
received it benefited from the treatment. But after the initial wave of
excitement and the use of cis-platinum became more routine, its rate of
effectiveness dropped to about 25 to 30 percent. Apparently most of the
benefit obtained from cis-platinum was due to the placebo effect. 25

Do Any Drugs Really Work?

Such incidents raise an important question. If drugs such as Krebiozen
and cis-platinum work when we believe in them and stop working when
we stop believing in them, what does this imply about the nature of
drugs in general? This is a difficult question to answer, but we do have
some clues. For instance, physician Herbert Benson of Harvard Medical
School points out that the vast majority of treatments prescribed prior to
this century, from leeching to consuming lizard’s blood, were useless,
but because of the placebo effect, they were no doubt helpful at least
some of the time. -6

I Sing the Body Holographic


Benson, along with Dr. David P. McCallie, Jr., of Harvard’s
Thorn-dike Laboratory, reviewed studies of various treatments for
angina pectoris that have been prescribed over the years and discovered
that although remedies have come and gone, the success rates — even for
treatments that are now discredited — have always remained high. 27
From these two observations it is evident that the placebo effect has
played an important roie in medicine in the past, but does it still play a
role today? The answer, it seems, is yes. The federal Office of Tech-
nology Assessment estimates that more than 75 percent of all current
medical treatments have not been subjected to sufficient scientific
scrutiny, a figure that suggests that doctors may still be giving placebos
and not know it (Benson, for one, believes that, at the very least, many
over-the-counter medications act primarily as placebos). – ”

Given the evidence we have looked at so far, one might almost wonder
if all drugs are placebos. Clearly the answer is no. Many drugs are
effective whether we believe in them or not: Vitamin C gets rid of scurvy,
and insulin makes diabetics better even when they are skeptical. But still
the issue is not quite as clear-cut as it may seem. Consider the following.

In a 1962 experiment Drs. Harriet Linton and Robert Langs told test
subjects they were going to participate in a study of the effects of LSD,
but then gave them a placebo instead. Nonetheless, half an hour after
taking the placebo, the subjects began to experience the classic
symptoms of the actual drug, loss of control, supposed insight into the
meaning of existence, and so on. These “placebo trips” lasted several
hours. 29

A few years later, in 1966, the now infamous Harvard psychologist
Richard Alpert journeyed to the East to look for holy men who could
offer him insight into the LSD experience. He found several who were
willing to sample the drug and, interestingly, received a variety of
reactions. One pundit told him it was good, but not as good as meditation.
Another, a Tibetan lama, complained that it only gave him a headache.

But the reaction that fascinated Alpert most came from a wizened
little holy man in the foothills of the Himalayas. Because the man was
over sixty, Alpert’s first inclination was to give him a gentle dose of 50 to
75 micrograms. But the man was much more interested in one of the 305
microgram pills Alpert had brought with him, a relatively sizable dose.
Reluctantly, Alpert gave him one of the pills, but still the man was not
satisfied. With a twinkle in his eye he requested another



and then another and placed all 9 1 5 micrograms of L SD on his tongue, a
massive dose by any standard, and swallowed them (in comparison, the
average dose Grof used in his studies was about 200 micrograms).

Aghast, Alpert watched intently, expecting the man to start waving
his arms and whooping like a banshee, but instead he behaved as if
nothing had happened. He remained that way for the rest of the day, his
demeanor as serene and unperturbed as it always was, save for the
twinkling glances he occasionally tossed Alpert. The LSD apparently
had little or no effect on him. Alpert was so moved by the experience he
gave up LSD, changed his name to Ram Dass, and converted to
mysticism. 30

And so taking a placebo may well produce the same effect as taking
the real drug, and taking the real drug might produce no effect. This
topsy-turvy state of affairs has also been demonstrated in experiments
involving amphetamines. In one study, ten subjects were placed in each
of two rooms. In the first room, nine were given a stimulating
amphetamine and the tenth a sleep-producing barbiturate. In the second
room the situation was reversed. In both instances, the person singled
out behaved exactly as his companions did. In the first room instead of
falling asleep the lone barbiturate taker became animated and speedy,
and in the second room the lone amphetamine taker fell asleep. 31 There
is also a case on record of a man addicted to the stimulant Ritalin, whose
addiction is then transferred to a placebo. In other words, the man’s
doctor enabled him to avoid all the usual unpleasantries of Ritalin
withdrawal by secretly replacing his prescription with sugar pills.
Unfortunately the man then went on to display an addiction to the

Such events are not limited to experimental situations. Placebos also
play a role in our everyday lives. Does caffeine keep you awake at night?
Research has shown that even an injection of caffeine won’t keep
caffeine-sensitive individuals awake if they believe they are receiving a
sedative. 33 Has an antibiotic ever helped you get over a cold or sore
throat? If so, you were experiencing the placebo effect. All colds are
caused by viruses, as are several types of sore throat, and antibiotics are
only effective against bacterial infections, not viral infections. Have you
ever experienced an unpleasant side effect after taking a medication? In
a study of a tranquilizer called mephenesin, researchers found that 10 to
20 percent of the test subjects experienced negative side
effects — including nausea, itchy rash, and heart

palpitations — regardless of whether they were given the actual drug

I Sing the Body Holographic


or a placebo.* Similarly, in a recent study of a new kind of chemo-
therapy, 30 percent of the individuals in the control group, the group
given placebos, lost their hair. 35 So if you know someone who is taking
chemotherapy, tell them to try to be optimistic in their expectations. The
mind is a powerful thing.

In addition to offering us a glimpse of this power, placebos also
support a more holographic approach to understanding the mind/body
relationship. As health and nutrition columnist Jane Brody observes in
an article in the New York Times, “The effectiveness of placebos
provides dramatic support for a ‘holistic’ view of the human organism, a
view that is receiving increasing attention in medical research. This
view holds that the mind and body continually interact and are too
closely interwoven to be treated as independent entities,” 36

The placebo effect may also be affecting us in far vaster ways than we
realize, as is evidenced by a recent and extremely puzzling medical
mystery. If you have watched any television at all in the last year or so,
you have no doubt seen a blitzkrieg of commercials promoting aspirin’s
ability to decrease the risk of heart attack. There is a good deal of
convincing evidence to back this up, otherwise television censors, who
are real sticklers for accuracy when it comes to medical claims in
commercials, wouldn’t allow such copy on the air. This is all well and
good. The only problem is that aspirin doesn’t seem to have the same
effect on people in England. A six -year study of 5,139 British doctors
revealed no evidence that aspirin reduces the risk of heart attack. 37 Is
there a flaw in somebody’s research, or is it possible that some kind of
massive placebo effect is to blame? Whatever the case, don’t stop
believing in the prophylactic benefits of aspirin. It still may save your

The Health Implications of Multiple Personality

Another condition that graphically illustrates the mind’s power to affect
the body is Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD). In addition to
possessing different brain-wave patterns, the subpersonalities of a
multiple have a strong psychological separation from one another.

“Of course I am by M means suggesting that all drug side effects are the result of the
placebo effect. Should you experience a negative reaction to a drug, always consult a



Each has his own name, age, memories, and abilities. Often each also
has his own style of handwriting, announced gender, cultural and racial
background, artistic talents, foreign language fluency, and IQ.

Even more noteworthy are the biological changes that take place in a
multiple’s body when they switch personalities. Frequently a medical
condition possessed by one personality will mysteriously vanish when
another personality takes over. Dr. Bennett Braun of the International
Society for the Study of Multiple Personality, in Chicago, has
documented a case in which all of a patient’s subpersonafities were
allergic to orange juice, except one. If the man drank orange juice when
one of his allergic personalities was in control, he would break out in a
terrible rash. But if he switched to his nonaliergic personality, the rash
would instantly start to fade and he could drink orange juice freely. 38

Dr. Francine Rowland, a Yale psychiatrist who specializes in treating
multiples, relates an even more striking incident concerning one
multiple’s reaction to a wasp sting. On the occasion in question, the man
showed up for his scheduled appointment with Rowland with his eye
completely swollen shut from a wasp sting. Realizing he needed medical
attention, Howland called an ophthalmologist Unfortunately, the
soonest the opthalmologist could see the man was an hour later, and
because the man was in severe pain, Howland decided to try something.
As it turned out, one of the man’s alternates was an “anesthetic
personality” who felt absolutely no pain. Howland had the anesthetic
personality take control of the body, and the pain ended. But something
else also happened. By the time the man arrived at his appointment with
the ophthalmologist, the swelling was gone and his eye had returned to
normal. Seeing no need to treat him, the ophthalmologist sent him home.

After a while, however, the anesthetic personality relinquished control
of the body, and the man’s original personality returned, along with all
the pain and swelling of the wasp sting. The next day he went back to the
ophthalmologist to at last be treated. Neither Howland nor her patient
had told the ophthalmologist that the man was a multiple, and after
treating him, the ophthalmologist telephoned Howland. “He thought
time was playing tricks on him.” Rowland laughed. “He just wanted to
make sure that I had actually called him the day before and he had not
imagined it” 39

Allergies are not the only thing multiples can switch on and off. If

1 Sing the Body Holographic


there was any doubt as to the control the unconscious mind has over drug
effects, it is banished by the pharmacological wizardry of the multiple.
By changing personalities, a multiple who is drunk can instantly become
sober. Different personalities also respond differently to different drugs.
Braun records a case in which 5 milligrams of diazepam, a tranquilizer,
sedated one personality, while 100 milligrams had little or no effect on
another. Often one or several of a multiple’s personalities are children,
and if an adult personality is given a drug and then a child’s personality
takes over, the adult dosage may be too much for the child and result in
an overdose. It is also difficult to anesthetize some multiples, and there
are accounts of multiples wakmg up on the operating table after one of
their “unanesthetizable” subpersonalities has taken over.

Other conditions that can vary from personality to personality include
scars, burn marks, cysts, and left- and right-handedness. Visual acuity
can differ, and some multiples have to carry two or three different pairs
of eyeglasses to accommodate their alternating personalities. One
personality can be color-blind and another not, and even eye color can
change. There are cases of women who have two or three menstrual
periods each month because each of their subpersonalities has its own
cycle. Speech pathologist Christy Ludlow has found that the voice
pattern for each of a multiple’s personalities is different, a feat that
requires such a deep physiological change that even the most
accomplished actor cannot alter his voice enough to disguise his voice
pattern. *° One multiple, admitted to a hospital for diabetes, baffled her
doctors by showing no symptoms when one of her nondiabetic person-
alities was in control. 41 There are accounts of epilepsy coming and going
with changes in personality, and psychologist Robert A. Phillips, Jr.,
reports that even tumors can appear and disappear (although he does not
specify what kind of tumors). 42

Multiples also tend to heal faster than normal individuals. For ex-
ample, there are several cases on record of third-degree burns healing
with extraordinary rapidity. Most eerie of all, at least one researcher — Dr.
Cornelia Wilbur, the therapist whose pioneering treatment of Sybil
Dorsett was portrayed in the book Sybil — is convinced that multiples
don’t age as fast as other people.

How could such things be? At a recent symposium on the multiple
personality syndrome, a multiple named Cassandra provided a possible
answer. Cassandra attributes her own rapid healing ability both to



the visualization techniques she practices and to something she calls
parallel processing. As she explained, even when her alternate per-
sonalities are not in control of her body, they are still aware. This
enables her to “think” on a multitude of different channels at once, to do
things like work on several different term papers simultaneously, and
even “sleep” while other personalities prepare her dinner and clean her

Hence, whereas norma! people only do healing imagery exercises two
or three times a day, Cassandra does them around the clock. She even
has a subpersonality named Celese who possesses a thorough
knowledge of anatomy and physiology, and whose sole function is to
spend twenty-four hours a day meditating and imaging the body’s
well-being. According to Cassandra, it is this full-time attention to her
health that gives her an edge over normal people. Other multiples have
made similar claims. 43

We are deeply attached to the inevitability of things. If we have bad
vision, we believe we will have bad vision for life, and if we suffer from
diabetes, we do not for a moment think our condition might vanish with
a change in mood or thought. But the phenomenon of multiple
personality challenges this belief and offers further evidence of just how
much our psychological states can affect the body’s biology. If the
psyche of an individual with MPD is a kind of multiple image hologram,
it appears that the body is one as well, and can switch from one
biological state to another as rapidly as the flutter of a deck of cards.

The systems of control that must be in place to account for such
capacities is mind-boggling and makes our ability to will away a wart
look pale. Allergic reaction to a wasp sting is a complex and
multi-faceted process and involves the organized activity of antibodies,
the production of histamine, the dilation and rupture of blood vessels,
the excessive release of immune substances, and so on. What unknown
pathways of influence enable the mind of a multiple to freeze all these
processes in their tracks? Or what allows them to suspend the effects of
alcohol and other drugs in the blood, or turn diabetes on and off? At the
moment we don’t know and must console ourselves with one simple fact.
Once a multiple has undergone therapy and in some way becomes
whole again, he or she can still make these switches at will.'” This
suggests that somewhere in our psyches we all have the ability to
control these things. And still this is not all we can do.

I Sing the Body Holographic


Pregnancy, Organ Transplants, and
Tapping the Genetic Level

As we have seen, simple everyday belief can also have a powerful effect
on the body. Of course most of us do not have the mental discipline to
completely control our beliefs (which is why doctors must use placebos
to fool us into tapping the healing forces within us). To regain that
control we must first understand the different types of belief that can
affect us, for these too offer their own unique window on the plasticity
of the mind/body relationship.


One type of belief is imposed on us by our society. For example, the
people of the Trobriand Islands engage freely in sexual relations before
marriage, but premarital pregnancy is strongly frowned upon. They use
no form of contraception, and seldom if ever resort to abortion. Yet
premarital pregnancy is virtually unknown. This suggests that, because
of their cultural beliefs, the unmarried women are unconsciously
preventing themselves from getting- pregnant. 4S There is evidence that
something similar may be going on in our own culture. Almost everyone
knows of a couple who have tried unsuccessfully for years to have a
child. They finally adopt, and shortly thereafter the woman gets pregnant.
Again this suggests that finally having a child enabled the woman and/or
her husband to overcome some sort of inhibition that was blocking the
effects of her and/or his fertility.

The fears we share with the other members of our culture can also
affect us greatly. In the nineteenth century, tuberculosis killed tens of
thousands of people, but starting in the 1880s, death rates began to
plummet. Why? Previous to that decade no one knew what caused TB,
which gave it an aura of terrifying mystery. But in 1882 Dr. Robert Koch
made the momentous discovery that TB was caused by a bacterium.
Once this knowledge reached the general public, death rates fell from
600 per 100,000 to 200 per 100,000, despite the fact that it would be
nearly half a century before an effective drug treatment could be
found. 46

Fear apparently has been an important factor in the success rates of
organ transplants as well. In the 1 950s kidney transplants were only a
tantalizing possibility. Then a doctor in Chicago made what



seemed to be a successful transplant He published his findings, and soon
after other successful transplants took place around the world. Then the
first transplant failed. In fact, the doctor discovered that the kidney had
actually been rejected from the start. But it did not matter. Once
transplant recipients believed they could survive, they did, and success
rates soared beyond all expectations. 47


Another way belief manifests in our lives is through our attitudes.
Studies have shown that the attitude an expectant mother has toward her
baby, and pregnancy in general, has a direct correlation with the
complications she will experience during childbirth, as well as with the
medical problems her newborn infant will have after it is born. 4 * Indeed,
in the past decade an avalanche of studies has poured in demonstrating
the effect our attitudes have on a host of medical conditions. People who
score high on tests designed to measure hostility and aggression are
seven times more likely to die from heart problems than people who
receive low scores. 49 Married women have stronger immune systems
than separated or divorced women, and happily married women have
even stronger immune systems. 60 People with AIDS who display a
fighting spirit live longer than AIDS-infected individuals who have a
passive attitude. 51 People with cancer also live longer if they maintain a
fighting spirit, 52 Pessimists get more colds than optimists. 53 Stress
lowers the immune response; 54 people who have just lost their spouse
have an increased incidence of illness and disease, 55 and on and on.


The types of belief we have examined so far can be viewed largely as
passive beliefs, beliefs we allow our culture or the normal state of our
thoughts to impose upon us. Conscious belief in the form of a steely and
unswerving will can also be used to sculpt and control the body
holographic. In the 1970s, Jack Schwarz, a Dutch-born author and
lecturer, astounded researchers in laboratories across the United States
with his ability to willfully control his body’s internal biological

In studies conducted at the Menninger Foundation, the University of
California’s Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute, and others,

I Sing the Body Holographic


Schwarz astonished doctors by sticking mammoth six-inch sailmaker’s
needles completely through his arms without bleeding, without flinching,
and without producing beta brain waves (the type of brain waves
normally produced when a person is in pain). Even when the needles
were removed, Schwara still did not bleed, and the puncture holes closed
tightly. In addition, Schwarz altered his brain-wave rhythms at will, held
burning cigarettes against his flesh without harming himself, and even
carried live coals around in his hands. He claims he acquired these
abilities when he was in a Nazi concentration camp and had to learn how
to control pain in order to withstand the terrible beatings he endured. He
believes anyone can learn voluntary control of their body and thus gain
responsibility for his or her own health. 55

Oddly enough, in 1947 another Dutchman demonstrated similar
abilities. The man’s name was Mirin Dajo, and in public performances at
the Corso Theater in Zurich, he left audiences stunned. In plain view
Dajo would have an assistant stick a fencing foil completely through his
body, clearly piercing vital organs but causing Dajo no harm or pain.
Like Schwarz, when the foil was removed, Dajo did not bleed and only a
faint red line marked the spot where the foil had entered and exited.

Dajo’s performance proved so nerve-racking to his audiences that
eventually one spectator suffered a heart attack, and Dajo was legally
banned from performing in public. However, a Swiss doctor named Hans
Naegeli-Osjord learned of Dajo’s alleged abilities and asked him if he
would submit to scientific scrutiny. Dajo agreed, and on May 31, 1947,
he entered the Zurich cantonal hospital. In addition to Dr.
Naegeli-Osjord, Dr. Werner Brunner, the chief of surgery at the hospital,
was also present, as were numerous other doctors, students, and
journalists. Dajo bared his chest and concentrated, and then, in full view
of the assemblage, he had his assistant plunge the foil through his body.

As always, no blood flowed and Dajo remained completely at ease.
But he was the only one smiling. The rest of the crowd had turned to
stone. By all rights, Dajo’s vital organs should have been severely
damaged, and his seeming good health was almost too much for the
doctors to bear. Filled with disbelief, they asked Dajo if he would submit
to an X ray. He agreed and without apparent effort accompanied them up
the stairs to the X-ray room, the foil still through his abdomen. The X ray
was taken and the result was undeniable. Dajo was indeed impaled.
Finally, a full twenty minutes after he had been



pierced, the foil was removed, leaving only two faint scars. Later, Dajo
was tested by scientists in Basel, and even let the doctors themselves run
him through with the foil. Dr. Naegeli-Osjord later related the entire
case to the German physicist Alfred Stelter, and Stelter reports it in his
book Psi-Heating.

Such supernormal feats of control are not limited to the Dutch. In the
1960s Gilbert Grosvenor, the president of the National Geographic
Society, his wife, Donna, and a team of Geographic photographers
visited a village in Ceylon to witness the alleged miracles of a local
wonderworker named Mohotty. It seems that as a young boy Mohotty
prayed to a Ceylonese divinity named Kataragama and told the god that
if he cleared Mohotty’s father of a murder charge, he, Mohotty, would
do yearly penance in Kataragama’s honor. Mohotty’s father was cleared,
and true to his word, every year Mohotty did his penance.

This consisted of walking through fire and hot coals, piercing his
cheeks with skewers, driving skewers into his arms from shoulder to
wrist, sinking large hooks deep into his back, and dragging an enormous
sledge around a courtyard with ropes attached to the hooks. As the
Grosvenors later reported, the hooks pulled the flesh in Mohotty’s back
quite taut, and again there was no sign of blood. When Mohotty was
finished and the hooks were removed, there weren’t even any traces of
wounds. The Geographic team photographed this unnerving display and
published both pictures and an account of the incident in the April 1 966
issue of National Geographic.™

In 1 967 Scientific American published a report about a similar annual
ritual in India. In that instance a different person was chosen each year
by the local community, and after a generous amount of ceremony, two
hooks large enough to hang a side of beef on were buried in the victim’s
back. Ropes that were pulled through the eyes of the hooks were tied to
the boom of an ox cart, and the victim was then swung in huge ares over
the fields as a sacramental offering to the fertility gods. When the hooks
were removed the victim was completely unharmed, there was no blood,
and literally no sign of any punctures in the flesh itself. 59


As we have seen, if we are not fortunate enough to have the
self-mastery of a Dajo or a Mohotty, another way of accessing the
healing force within us is to bypass the thick armor of doubt and

I Sing the Body Holographic


that exists in our conscious minds. Being tricked with a placebo is one
way of accomplishing this. Hypnosis is another. Like a surgeon reach-
ing in and altering the condition of an internal organ, a skilled hypno-
therapist can reach into our psyche and help us change the most
important type of belief of all, our unconscious beliefs.

Numerous studies have demonstrated irrefutably that under hypnosis
a person can influence processes usually considered unconscious. For
instance, like a multiple, deeply hypnotized persons can control allergic
reactions, blood flow patterns, and nearsightedness. In addition, they
can control heart rate, pain, body temperature, and even will away some
kinds of birthmarks. Hypnosis can also be used to accomplish
something that, in its own way, is every bit as remarkable as suffering
no injury after a foil has been stuck through one’s abdomen.

That something involves a horribly disfiguring hereditary condition
known as Brock’s disease. Victims of Brocq’s disease develop a thick,
horny covering over their skin that resembles the scales of a reptile. The
skin can become so hardened and rigid that even the slightest movement
will cause it to crack and bleed. Many of the so-called alligator-skinned
people in circus sideshows were actually individuals with Brocq’s
disease, and because of the risk of infection, victims of Brocq’s disease
used to have relatively short lifespans.

Brocq’s disease was incurable until 1951 when a sixteen-year-old boy
with an advanced case of the affliction was referred as a last resort to a
hypnotherapist named A. A. Mason at the Queen Victoria Hospital in
London. Mason discovered that the boy was a good hypnotic subject and
could easily be put into a deep state of trance. While the boy was in
trance, Mason told him that his Brocq’s disease was healing and would
soon be gone. Five days later the scaly layer covering the boy’s left arm
fell off, revealing soft, healthy flesh beneath. By the end often days the
arm was completely normal. Mason and the boy continued to work on
different body areas until all of the scaly skin was gone. The boy
remained symptom-free for at least five years, at which point Mason lost
touch with him. 00

This is extraordinary because Brocq’s disease is a genetic condition,
and getting rid of it involves more than just controlling autonomic
processes such as blood flow patterns and various cells of the immune
system. It means tapping into the masterplan, our DN A programming
itself. So, it would appear that when we access the right strata of our
beliefs, our minds can override even our genetic makeup.



FIGURE 11. A 1962 X ray showing the degree to which Vittorio Michelli’s hip bone had
disintegrated as a result of his malignant sarcoma. So littie bone was left that the ball of his
upper leg was free-floating in a mass of soft tissue, rendered as gray mist in the X ray.

FIGURE 12. After a series of baths in the spring at Lourdes, Michelli experienced a
miraculous healing. His hip bone completely regenerated over the course of several
months, a feat currently considered impossible by medical science. This 1965 X ray shows
his miraculously restored hip joint. [Source: Michel-Marie Salmon, The Extraordinary
Cure of Vittorio Michelli. Used by permission]

I Sing the Body Holographic



Perhaps the most powerful types of belief of all are those we express
through spiritual faith. In 1962 a man named Vittorio Michelli was
admitted to the Military Hospital of Verona, Italy, with a large cancerous
tumor on his left hip (see fig. 1 1). So dire was his prognosis that he was
sent home without treatment, and within ten months his hip had
completely disintegrated, leaving the bone of his upper leg floating in
nothing more than a mass of soft tissue. He was, quite literally, falling
apart As a last resort he traveled to Lourdes and had himself bathed in
the spring (by this time he was in a plaster cast, and his movements were
quite restricted). Immediately on entering the water he had a sensation of
heat moving through his body. After the bath his appetite returned and he
felt renewed energy. He had several more baths and then returned home.

Over the course of the next month he felt such an increasing sense of
well-being he insisted his doctors X-ray him again. They discovered his
tumor was smaller. They were so intrigued they documented every step
in this improvement. It was a good thing because after Michelli’s tumor
disappeared, his bone began to regenerate, and the medical community
generally views this as an impossibility. Within two months he was up
and walking again, and over the course of the next several years his bone
completely reconstructed itself (see fig. 12).

A dossier on Michelli’s case was sent to the Vatican’s Medical Com-
mission, an international panel of doctors set up to investigate such
matters, and after examining the evidence the commission decided
Michelli had indeed experienced a miracle. As the commission stated in
its official report, “A remarkable reconstruction of the iliac bone and
cavity has taken place. The X rays made in 1964,1965,1968 and 1969
confirm categorically and without doubt that an unforeseen and even
overwhelming bone reconstruction has taken place of a type unknown in
the annals of world medicine. ” * 61

Was Michelli’s healing a miracle in the sense that it violated any of the
known laws of physics? Although the jury remains out on this question,
there seems no clear-cut reason to believe any laws were

‘In a truly stunning example of synchronicity, while I was in the middle of writing these
very words a letter armed in the mail informing me that a friend who lives in Kauai, Hawaii,
and whose hip had disintegrated due to cancer has also experienced an “inexplicable” and
complete regeneration of her bone. The tools she employed to effect her recovery were
chemotherapy, extensive meditation, and imagery exercises. The story of her healing has
been reported in the Hawaiian newspapers.



violated. Rather, Michelli’s healing may simply be due to natural pro-
cesses we do not yet understand. Given the phenomenal range of healing
capacities we have looked at so far, it is clear there are many pathways
of interaction between the mind and body that we do not yet understand.

If Michelli’s healing was attributable to an undiscovered natural
process, we might better ask, Why is the regeneration of bone so rare
and what triggered it in Michelli’s case? It may be that bone regenera-
tion is rare because achieving it requires the accessing of very deep
levels of the psyche, levels usually not reached through the normal
activities of consciousness. This appears to be why hypnosis is needed
to bring about a remission of Brocq’s disease. As for what triggered
Michelli’s healing, given the role belief plays in so many examples of
mind/body plasticity it is certainly a primary suspect. Could it be that
through his faith in the healing power of Lourdes, Michelli somehow,
either consciously or serendipitously, effected his own cure?

There is strong evidence that belief, not divine intervention, is the
prime mover in at least some so-called miraculous occurrences. Recall
that Mohotty attained his supernormal self-control by praying to
Kata-ragama, and unless we are willing to accept the existence of
Katara-gama, Mohotty *s abilities seem better explained by his deep and
abiding belief that he was divinely protected. The same seems to be true
of many miracles produced by Christian wonder-workers and saints.

One Christian miracle that appears to be generated by the power of the
mind is stigmata. Most church scholars agree that St. Francis of Assisi
was the first person to manifest spontaneously the wounds of the
crucifixion, but since his death there have been literally hundreds of
other stigmatists. Although no two ascetics exhibit the stigmata in quite
the same way, all have one thing in common. From St. Francis on, all
have had wounds on their hands and feet that represent where Christ was
nailed to the cross. This is not what one would expect if stigmata were
God-given. As parapsychologist D. Scott Rogo, a member of the
graduate faculty at John F. Kennedy University in Orinda, California,
points out, it was Roman custom to place the nails through the wrists,
and skeletal remains from the time of Christ bear this out Nails inserted
through the hands cannot support the weight of a body hanging on a

Why did St. Francis and all the other stigmatists who came after him
believe the nail holes passed through the hands? Because that is the way
the wounds have been depicted by artists since the eighth cen-

I Sing the Body Holographic


tury. That the position and even size and shape of stigmata have been
influenced by art is especially apparent in the case of an Italian
stigma-tist named Gemma Galgani, who died in 1903. Gemma’s wounds
precisely mirrored the stigmata on her own favorite crucifix.

Another researcher who believed stigmata are self-induced was
Herbert Thurston, an English priest who wrote several volumes on
miracles. In his tour de force The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism,
published posthumously in 1952, he listed several reasons why he
thought stigmata were a product of autosuggestion. The size, shape, and
location of the wounds varies from stigmatist to stigmatist, an
inconsistency that indicates they are not derived from a common source,
i.e., the actual wounds of Christ. A comparison of the visions
experienced by various stigmatists also shows little consistency, sug-
gesting that they are not reenactments of the historical crucifixion, but
are instead products of the stigmatists’ own minds. And perhaps most
significant of all, a surprisingly large percentage of stigmatists also
suffered from hysteria, a fact Thurston interpreted as a further indication
that stigmata are the side effect of a volatile and abnormally emotional
psyche, and not necessarily the product of an enlightened one. 63 In view
of such evidence it is small wonder that even some of the more liberal
members of the Catholic leadership believe stigmata are the product of
“mystical contemplation,” that is, that they are created by the mind
during periods of intense meditation.

If stigmata are products of autosuggestion, the range of control the
mind has over the body holographic must be expanded even further.
Like Mohotty’s wounds, stigmata can also heal with disconcerting speed.
The almost limitless plasticity of the body is further evidenced in the
ability of some stigmatists to grow nail-like protuberances in the middle
of their wounds. Again, St. Francis was the first to display this
phenomenon. According to Thomas of Celano, an eyewitness to St.
Francis’s stigmata and also his biographer: “His hands and feet seemed
pierced in the midst by nails. These marks were round on the inner side
of the hands and elongated on the outer side, and certain small pieces of
flesh were seen like the ends of nails bent and driven back, projecting
from the rest of the flesh. ” 64

Another contemporary of St. Francis’s, St Bonaventura, also wit-
nessed the saint’s stigmata and said that the nails were so clearly defined
one could slip a finger under them and into the wounds. Although St.
Francis’s nails appeared to be composed of blackened and hardened
flesh, they possessed another naillike quality. According to



Thomas of Celano, if a iiaiJ were pressed on one side, it instantly
projected on the other side, just as it would if it were a real nail being slid
back and forth through the middle of the hand!

Therese Neumann, the well-known Bavarian stigmatist who died in
1962, also had such naillike protuberances. Like St. Francis’s they were
apparently formed of hardened skin. They were thoroughly examined by
several doctors and found to be structures that passed completely
through her hands and feet. Unlike St. Francis’s wounds, which were
open continuously, Neumann’s opened only periodically, and when they
stopped bleeding, a soft, membranelike tissue quickly grew over them.

Other stigmatists have displayed similarly profound alterations in
their bodies. Padre Pio, the famous Italian stigmatist who died in 1968,
had stigmata wounds that passed completely through his hands. A
wound in his side was so deep that doctors who examined it were afraid
to measure it for fear of damaging his internal organs. Venerable
Giovanna Maria Solimani, an eighteenth-century Italian stigmatist, had
wounds in her hands deep enough to stick a key into. As with all
stigmatists’ wounds, bers never became decayed, infected, or even
inflamed. And another eighteenth-century stigmatist, St. Veronica Gi-
uliani, an abbess at a convent in Citta di Castello in Umbria, Italy, had a
large wound in her side that would open and close on command.

Images Projected Outside the Brain

The holographic model has aroused the interest of researchers in the
Soviet Union, and two Soviet psychologists, Dr. Alexander P. Dubrov
and Dr. Veniamin N. Pushkin, have written extensively on the idea.
They believe that the frequency processing capabilities of the brain do
not in and of themselves prove the holographic nature of the images and
thoughts in the human mind. They have, however, suggested what might
constitute such proof. Dubrov and Pushkin believe that if an example
could be found where the brain projected an image outside of itself, the
holographic nature of the mind would be convincingly demonstrated. Or
to use their own words, “Records of ejection of psychophysical
structures outside the brain would provide direct evidence of brain
holograms.” 65

In fact, St. Veronica Giuliani seems to supply such evidence. During

I Sing the Body Holographic


the last years of her life she became convinced that the images of the
Passion — a crown of thorns, three nails, a cross, and a sword — had
become emblazoned on her heart. She drew pictures of these and even
noted where they were located. After she died an autopsy revealed that
the symbols were indeed impressed on her heart exactly as she had
depicted them. The two doctors who performed the autopsy signed
sworn statements attesting to their finding. 66

Other stigmatists have had similar experiences. St. Teresa of Avila had
a vision of an angel piercing her heart with a sword, and after she died a
deep fissure was found in her heart. Her heart, with the miraculous sword
wound still clearly visible, is now on display as a relic in Alba de Tormes,
Spain. 67 A nineteenth-century French stigmatist named Marie- Julie
Jahenny kept seeing the image of a flower in her mind, and eventually a
picture of the flower appeared on her breast. It remained there twenty
years. 6 ” Nor are such abilities limited to stigmatists. In 1913 a
twelve-year-old girl from the village of Bussus-Bus-Suel, near Abbeville,
France, made headlines when it was discovered that she could
consciously command images, such as pictures of dogs and horses, to
appear on her arms, legs, and shoulders. She could also produce words,
and when someone asked her a question the answer would instantly
appear on her skin. 69

Surely such demonstrations are examples of the ejection of psycho-
physical structures outside the brain. In fact, in a way stigmata them-
selves, especially those in which the flesh has formed into nail-like
protrusions, are examples of the brain projecting images outside itself
and impressing them in the soft clay of the body holographic. Dr.
Michael Grosso, a philosopher at Jersey City State College who has
written extensively on the subject of miracles, has also arrived at this
conclusion. Grosso, who traveled to Italy to study Padre Pio’s stigmata
firsthand, states, “One of the categories in my attempt to analyze Padre
Pio is to say that he had an ability to symbolically transform physical
reality. In other words, the level of consciousness he was operating at
enabled him to transform physical reality in the light of certain symbolic
ideas. For example, he identified with the wounds of the crucifixion and
his body became permeable to those psychie symbols, gradually
assuming their form.”™

So it appears that through the use of images, the brain can tell the body
what to do, including telling it to make more images. Images making
images. Two mirrors reflecting each other infinitely. Such is the nature
of the mind/body relationship in a holographic universe.



Laws Both Known and Unknown

At the beginning of this chapter, I said that instead of examining the
various mechanisms the mind uses to control the body, the chapter
would be devoted primarily to exploring the range of this control. In
doing so I did not mean to deny or diminish the importance of such
mechanisms. They are crucial to our understanding of the mind/ body
relationship, and new discoveries in this area seem to appear every day.

For example, at a recent conference on psychoneuroimmunology — a
new science that studies the way the mind (psycho), the nervous system
(neuro), and the immune system (immunology) interact — Candace Pert,
chief of brain biochemistry at the National Institute of Mental Health,
announced that immune cells have neuropeptide receptors.
Neuropeptides are molecules the brain uses to communicate, the brain’s
telegrams, if you will. There was a time when it was believed that
neuropeptides could only be found in the brain. But the existence of
receptors (telegram receivers) on the cells in our immune system
implies that the immune system is not separate from but is an extension
of the brain. Neuropeptides have also been found in various other parts
of the body, leading Pert to admit that she can no longer tell where the
brain leaves off and the body begins. 71

I have excluded such particulars, not only because 1 felt examining
the extent to which the mind can shape and control the body was more
relevant to the discussion at hand, but also because the biological
processes responsible for mind/body interactions are too vast a subject
for this book. At the beginning of the section on miracles I said there
was no clear-cut reason to believe Michelli’s bone regeneration could
not be explained by our current understanding of physics. This is less
true of stigmata. It also appears to be very much not true of various
paranormal phenomena reported by credible individuals throughout
history, and in recent times by various biologists, physicists, and other

In this chapter we have looked at astounding things the mind can do
that, although not fully understood, do not seem to violate any of the
known laws of physics. In the next chapter we will look at some of the
things the mind can do that cannot be explained by our current scientific
understandings. As we will see, the holographic idea may shed light in
these areas as well. Venturing into these territories will

I Sing the Body Holographic


occasionally involve treading on what might at first seem to be shaky
ground and examining phenomena even more dizzying and incredible
than Mohotty’s rapidly healing wounds and the images on St. Veronica
Giuliani’s heart. But again we will find that, despite their daunting
nature, science is also beginning to make inroads into these territories.

Acupuncture Microsystems and the
Little Man in the Ear

Before closing, one last piece of evidence of the body’s holographic
nature deserves to be mentioned. The ancient Chinese art of acupuncture
is based on the idea that every organ and bone in the body is connected
to specific points on the body’s surface. By activating these acupuncture
points, with either needles or some other form of stimulation, it is
believed that diseases and imbalances affecting the parts of the body
connected to the points can be alleviated and even cured. There are over
a thousand acupuncture points organized in imaginary lines called
meridians on the body’s surface. Although still controversial,
acupuncture is gaining acceptance in the medical community and has
even been used successfully to treat chronic back pain in racehorses.

In 1957 a French physician and acupuncturist named Paul Nogier
published a book called Treatise of Auriculotkerapy, in which he
announced his discovery that in addition to the major acupuncture
system, there are two smaller acupuncture systems on both ears. He
dubbed these acupuncture microsystems and noted that when one played
a kind of connect-the-dots game with them, they formed an anatomical
map of a miniature human inverted like a fetus (see fig. 13).
Unbeknownst to Nogier, the Chinese had discovered the “little man in
the ear” nearly 4,000 years earlier, but a map of the Chinese ear system
wasn’t published until after Nogier had already laid claim to the idea.

The little man in the ear is not just a charming aside in the history of
acupuncture. Dr. Terry Oleson, a psycho biologist at the Pain Man-
agement Clinic at the University of California at Los Angeles School of
Medicine, has discovered that the ear microsystem can be used to
diagnose accurately what’s going on in the body. For instance, Oleson



has discovered that increased electrical activity in one of the acupuncture
points in the ear generally indicates a pathological condition (either past
or present) in the corresponding area of the body. In one study, forty
patients were examined to determine areas of their body where they
experienced chronic pain. Following the examination, each

Foot (E}

Kim* (C)
Foot (C)

Kidney {E)

Renital Organs


Urinary Bladder


Kldntyl (C)

Pancreas, Rail Bladder

Sun 11 and Laroe intestines








Pituitary Eland
Endocrine Homones

Tbalanus (E)

Cerebral Corte* (E]

Bart of Head
Loner Jaw, TK) krta

C ? Chinese Ear Acupuncture Systoi
E » European AiiHculotherapy Systen

Figure 13. The Little Man in the Ear. Acupuncturists have found that the acu-
puncture points in the ear form the outline of a miniature human being. Dr. Terry
Oleson, a psychobiologist at UCLA’s School of Medicine, believes it is because the
body is a hologram and each of its portions contains an image of the whole.
[Copyright Dr. Terry Oleson, UCLA School of Medicine. Used by permission]

1 Sing the Body Holographic


patient was draped in a sheet to conceal any visible problems. Then an
acupuncturist with no knowledge of the results examined only their ears.
When the results were tallied it was discovered that the ear examinations
were in agreement with the established medical diagnoses 75.2 percent
of the time. 72

Ear examinations can also reveal problems with the bones and internal
organs. Once when Oleson was out boating with an acquaintance he
noticed an abnormally flaky patch of skin in one of the man’s ears. From
his research Oleson knew the spot corresponded to the heart, and he
suggested to the man that he might want to get his heart checked. The
man went to his doctor the next day and discovered he had a cardiac
problem which required immediate open-heart surgery. 73

Oleson also uses electrical stimulation of the acupuncture points in the
ear to treat chronic pain, weight problems, hearing loss, and virtually all
kinds of addiction. In one study of 14 narcotic-addicted individuals,
Oleson and his colleagues used ear acupuncture to eliminate the drug
requirements of 12 of them in an average of 5 days and with only
minimal withdrawal symptoms/ 4 Indeed, ear acupuncture has proved so
successful in bringing about rapid narcotic detoxification that clinics in
both Los Angeles and New York are now using the technique to treat
street addicts.

Why would the acupuncture points in the ear be aligned in the shape of
a miniature human? Oleson believes it is because of the holographic
nature of the mind and body. Just as every portion of a hologram
contains the image of the whole, every portion of the body may also
contain the image of the whole. “The ear holograph is, logically, con-
nected to the brain holograph which itself is connected to the whole
body,” he states. ” The way we use the ear to affect the rest of the body is
by working through the brain holograph.” 75

Oleson believes there are probably acupuncture microsystems in other
parts of the body as well. Dr. Ralph Alan Dale, the director of the
Acupuncture Education Center in North Miami Beach, Florida, agrees.
After spending the last two decades tracking down clinical and research
data from China, Japan, and Germany, he has accumulated evidence of
eighteen different micro acupuncture holograms in the body, including
ones in the hands, feet, arms, neck, tongue, and even the gums. Like
Oleson, Dale feels these microsystems are “holographic reiterations of
the gross anatomy,” and believes there are still other such systems
waiting to be discovered. In a notion reminiscent of Bohm’s assertion
that every electron in some way contains the



cosmos, Dale hypothesizes that every finger, and even every cell, may
contain its own acupuncture microsystem. 76

Richard Leviton, a contributing editor at East West magazine, who
has written about the holographic implications of acupuncture mi-
crosystems, thinks that alternative medical techniques — such as re-
flexology, a type of massage therapy that involves accessing all points
of the body through stimulation of the feet, and iridology, a diagnostic
technique that involves examining’ the iris of the eye in order to deter-
mine the condition of the body — may also be indications of the body’s
holographic nature. Leviton concedes that neither field has been ex-
perimentally vindicated {studies of iridology, in particular, have pro-
duced extremely conflicting results) but feels the holographic idea
offers a way of understanding them if their legitimacy is established.

Leviton thinks there may even be something to palmistry. By this he
does not mean the type of hand reading practiced by fortune-tellers who
sit in glass storefronts and beckon people in, but the 4,500-year-old
Indian version of the science. He bases this suggestion on his own
profound encounter with an Indian hand reader living in Montreal who
possessed a doctorate in the subject from Agra University, India. “Lhe
holographic paradigm provides palmistry’s more esoteric and contro-
versial claims a context for validation,” says Leviton. 77

It is difficult to assess the type of palmistry practiced by Leviton’s
Indian hand reader in the absence of double-blind studies, but science is
beginning to accept that at least some information about our body ts
contained in the lines and whorls of our hand. Herman Weinreb, a
neurologist at New York University, has discovered that a fingerprint
pattern called an ulnar loop occurs more frequently in Alzheimer’s

Figure 14. Neurologists have found that Alzheimer’s patients have a more than
average chance of having a distinctive fingerprint pattern known as an ulnar
loop. At least ten other common genetic disabilities are also associated with
various patterns in the hand. Such findings may provide evidence of the holo-
graphic model’s assertion that every portron of the body contains information
about the whole. [Redrawn by the author from original art in Medicine magazine]

I Sing the Body Holographic


patients than in nonsufferers (see fig. 14). In a study of 50 Alzheimer’s
patients and 50 normal individuals, 72 percent of the Alzheimer’s group
had the pattern on at least 8 of their fingertips, compared to only 26
percent in the control group. Of those with ulnar loops on all 10
fingertips, 14 were Alzheimer’s sufferers, but only 4 members of the
control group had the pattern. 78

It is now known that 10 common genetic disabilities, including
Down’s syndrome, are also associated with various patterns in the hand.
Doctors in West Germany are now using this information to analyze
parents’ hand prints and help determine whether expectant mothers
should undergo amniocentesis, a potentially dangerous genetic
screening procedure in which a needle is inserted into the womb to draw
off amniotic fluid for laboratory testing.

Researchers at West Germany’s Institute of Dermatoglyphks in
Hamburg have even developed a computer system that uses an
opto-electric scanner to take a digitized “photo” of a patient’s hand. It
then compares the hand to the 10,000 other prints in its memory, scans it
for the nearly 50 distinctive patterns now known to be associated with
various hereditary disabilities, and quickly calculates the patient’s risk
factors. 78 So perhaps we should not be so quick to dismiss palmistry out
of hand. Lhe lines and whorls in our palms may contain more about our
whole self than we realize.

Harnessing the Powers of the Holographic Brain

Lhroughout this chapter two broad messages come through loud and
clear. According to the holographic model, the mind/body ultimately
cannot distinguish the difference between the neural holograms the
brain uses to experience reality and the ones it conjures up while
imagining reality. Both have a dramatic effect on the human organism,
an effect so powerful that it can modulate the immune system, duplicate
and/or negate the effects of potent drugs, heal wounds with amazing
rapidity, melt tumors, override our genetic programming, and reshape
our living flesh in ways that almost defy belief. Lhis then is the first
message: that each of us possesses the ability, at least at some level, to
influence our health and control our physical form in ways that are
nothing short of dazzling. We are all potential wonderworkers, dormant
yogis, and it is clear from the evidence presented




in the preceding pages that it would behoove us both as individuals and as
a species to devote a good deal more effort into exploring and harnessing
these talents.

The second message is that elements that go into the making of these
neural holograms are many and subtle. They include the images upon
which we meditate, our hopes and fears, the attitudes of our doctors, our
unconscious prejudices, our individual and cultural beliefs, and our faith
in things both spiritual and technological. More than just facts, these are
important clues, signposts that point toward those things that we must
become aware of and acquire mastery over if we are to learn how to
unleash and manipulate these talents. There are, no doubt, other factors
involved, other influences that shape and circumscribe these abilities, for
one thing should now be obvious. In a holographic universe, a universe
in which a slight change in attitude can mean the difference between life
and death, in which things are so subtly interconnected that a dream can
call forth the inexplicable appearance of a scarab beetle, and the factors
responsible for an illness can also evoke a certain pattern in the lines and
whorls of the hand, we have reason to suspect that each effect has
multitudinous causes. Each linkage is the starting point of a dozen more,
for in the words of Walt Whitman, “A vast similitude interlocks ail.”

A Pocketful of Miracles

Miracles happen, not in opposition to Nature, but in
opposition to what we know of Nature.

— St. Augustine

Every year in September and May a huge crowd gathers at the Duomo
San Gennaro, the principal cathedral of Naples, to witness a miracle. The
miracle involves a small viai containing a brown crusty substance
alleged to be the biood of San Gennaro, or St. Januarius, who was
beheaded by the Roman emperor Diocletian in A.D. 305. According to
legend, after the saint was martyred a serving woman collected some of
his blood as a reJic. No one knows precisely what happened after that,
save that the blood didn’t turn up again until the end of the thirteenth
century when it was ensconced in a silver reliquary in the cathedral.

The miracle is that twice yearly, when the crowd shouts at the vial, the
brown crusty substance changes into a bubbling, bright red liquid. There
is little doubt that the liquid is real blood. In 1 902 a group of scientists
from the University of Naples made a spectroscopic analysis of the
liquid by passing a beam of light through it, verifying that it was blood.
Unfortunately, because the reliquary containing the blood is so old and
fragile, the church will not allow it to be cracked open




so that other tests can be done, and so the phenomenon has never been
thoroughly studied.

But there is further evidence that the transformation is a more than
ordinary event. Occasionally throughout history (the first written ac-
count of the public performance of the miracle dates back to 1389) when
the vial is brought out, the blood refuses to liquefy. Although rare, this is
considered a very bad omen by the citizens of Naples. In the past, the
failure of the miracle has directly preceded the eruption of Vesuvius and
the Napoleonic invasion of Naples. More recently, in 1976 and 1978, it
presaged the worst earthquake in Italian history and the election of a
communist city government in Naples, respectively.

Is the liquefaction of San Gennaro’s blood a miracle? It appears to be,
at least in the sense that it seems impossible to explain by known
scientific laws. Is the liquefaction caused by San Gennaro himself? My
own feeling is that its more likely cause is the intense devotion and
belief of the people witnessing the miracle. I say this because nearly all
of the miracles performed by saints and wonder-workers of the world’s
great religions have also been duplicated by psychics. This suggests that,
as with stigmata, miracles are produced by forces lying deep in the
human mind, forces that are latent in all of us. Herbert Thurston, the
priest who wrote The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism, himself was
aware of this similarity and was reluctant to attribute any miracle to a
truly supernatural cause {as opposed to a psychic or paranormal cause).
Another piece of evidence supportive of this idea is that many
stigmatists, including Padre Pio and Therese Neumann, were also
renowned for their psychic abilities.

One psychic ability that appears to play a role in miracles is psycho-
kinesis or PK. Since the miracle of San Gennaro involves a physical
alteration of matter, PK is certainly a likely suspect. Rogo believes PK is
also responsible for some of the more dramatic aspects of stigmata. He
feels that it is well within the normal biological capabilities of the body
to cause small blood vessels under the skin to break and produce
superficial bleeding, but only PK can account for the rapid appearance of
large wounds. 1 Whether this is true or not remains to be seen, but PK is
clearly a factor in some of the phenomena that accompany stigmata.
When blood flowed from the wounds in Therese Neumann’s feet, it
always flowed toward her toes — exactly as it would have flowed from
Christ’s wounds when he was on the cross — regardless of how her feet
were positioned. This meant that when she was sitting upright in bed, the
blood actually flowed upward and counter to the force of

A Pocketful of Miracles


gravity. This was observed by numerous witnesses, including many U. S.
servicemen stationed in Germany after the war who visited Neumann to
witness her miraculous abilities. Gravity-defying flows of blood have
been reported in other cases of stigmata as well.

Such events leave us agog because our current worldview does not
provide us with a context with which to understand PK. Bohm believes
viewing the universe as a holomovement does provide us with a context.
To explain what he means he asks us to consider the following situation.
Imagine you are walking down a street late one night and a shadow
suddenly looms up out of nowhere. Your first thought might be that the
shadow is an assailant and you are in danger. The information contained
in this thought will in turn give rise to a range of imagined activities,
such as running, being hurt, and fighting. The presence of these
imagined activities in your mind, however, is not a purely “mental”
process, for they are inseparable from a host of related biological
processes, such as excitation of nerves, rapid heart beat, release of
adrenaline and other hormones, tensing of the muscles, and so on.
Conversely, if your first thought is that the shadow is just a shadow, a
different set of mental and biological responses will follow. Moreover, a
little reflection will reveal that we react both mentally and biologically
to everything we experience.

According to Bohm, the important point to be gleaned from this is that
consciousness is not the only thing that can respond to meaning. The
body can also respond, and this reveals that meaning is simultaneously
both mental and physical in nature. This is odd, for we normally think of
meaning as something that can only have an active effect on subjective
reality, on the thoughts inside our heads, not something that can
engender a response in the physical world of things and objects.
Meaning “can thus serve as the link or ‘bridge’ between these two sides
of reality,” Bohm states. “This link is indivisible in the sense that
information contained in thought, which we feel to be on the ‘mental’
side, is at the same time a neurophysiological, chemical, and physical
activity, which is clearly what is meant by this thought on the ‘material’

Bohm feels that examples of objectively active meaning can be found
in other physical processes. One is the functioning of a computer chip. A
computer chip contains information, and the meaning of the information
is active in the sense that it determines how electrical currents flow
through the computer. Another is the behavior of subatomic particles.
The orthodox view in physics is that quantum waves



act mechanically on a particle, controlling its movement in much the
same way that the waves of the ocean might control a Ping-Pong ball
floating on its surface. But Bohm does not feel that this view can explain,
for example, the coordinated dance of electrons in a plasma any more
than the wave motion of water could explain a similarly
well-choreographed movement of Ping-Pong balls if such a movement
were discovered on the ocean’s surface. He believes the relationship
between particle and quantum wave is more like a ship on automatic
pilot guided by radar waves. A quantum wave does not push an electron
about any more than a radar wave pushes a ship. Rather, it provides the
electron with information about its environment which the electron then
uses to maneuver on its own.

In other words, Bohm believes that an electron is not only mindiike,
but is a highly complex entity, a far cry from the standard view that an
electron is a simple, structureless point. The active use of information by
electrons, and indeed by all subatomic particles, indicates that the ability
to respond to meaning is a characteristic not only of consciousness but
of all matter. It is this intrinsic commonality, says Bohm, that offers a
possible explanation for PK. He states, “On this basis, psychokinesis
could arise if the mental processes of one or more people were focused
on meanings that were in harmony with those guiding the basic
processes of the material systems in which this psychokinesis was to be
brought about'” 1

It is important to note that this kind of psychokinesis would not be due
to a causal process, that is, a cause-and-effect relationship involving any
of the known forces in physics. Instead, it would be the result of a kind
of nonlocal “resonance of meanings,” or a kind of nonlocal interaction
similar to, but not the same as, the nonlocal interconnection that allows a
pair of twin photons to manifest the same angle of polarization which we
saw in chapter 2 (for technical reasons Bohm believes mere quantum
nonlocality cannot account for either PK or telepathy, and only a deeper
form of nonlocality, a kind of “super” nonlocality, would offer such an

The Gremlin in the Machine

Another researcher whose ideas about PK are similar to Bohm’s, but
who has taken them one step further, is Robert G. Jahn, a professor

A Pocketful of Miracles


of aerospace sciences and dean emeritus of the School of Engineering
and Applied Science at Princeton University. Jahn’s involvement in the
study of PK happened quite by accident. A former consultant for both
NASA and the Department of Defense, his original field of interest was
deep spaee propulsion. In fact, he is the author of Physics of Electric
Propulsion, the leading textbook in the field, and didn’t even believe in
the paranormal when a student first approached him and asked him to
oversee a PK experiment she wanted to do as an independent study
project. Jahn reluctantly agreed, and the results were so provocative they
inspired him to found the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research
(PEAR) lab in 1979. Since then PEAR researchers have not only
produced compelling evidence of the existence of PK, but have gathered
more data on the subject than anyone else in the country.

In one series of experiments Jahn and his associate, clinical psychol-
ogist Brenda Dunne, employed a device called a random event generator,
or REG, By relying on an unpredictable natural process such as
radioactive decay, a REG is able to produce a string of random binary
numbers. Such a string might look something like this: 1,2, 1, 2, 2, 1, 1,
2, 1, 1, 1, 2, 1. In other words, a REG is a kind of automatic coin-flipper
capable of producing an enormous number of coin flips in a very short
time. As everyone knows, if you flip a perfectly weighted coin 1 ,000
times, the odds are you will get a 50/50 split between heads and tails. In
reality, out of any 1,000 such flips, the split may vary a little in one
direction or the other, but the greater the number of flips, the closer to
50/50 the split will become.

What Jahn and Dunne did was have volunteers sit in front of the REG
and concentrate on having it produce an abnormally large number of
either heads or tails. Over the course of literally hundreds of thousands
of trials they discovered that, through concentration alone, the
volunteers did indeed have a small but statistically significant effect on
the REG’s output. They discovered two other things as well. The ability
to produce PK effects was not limited to a few gifted individuals but was
present in the majority of volunteers they tested. This suggests that most
of us possess some degree of PK. They also discovered that different
volunteers produced different and consistently distinctive results, results
that were so idiosyncratic that Jahn and Dunne started calling them
” signatures. ”

In another series of experiments Jahn and Dunne employed a
pinball-like device that allows 9,000 three-quarter-inch marbles to cir-



culate around 330 nylon pegs and distribute themselves into 19 collect-
ing bins at the bottom. The device is contained in a shallow vertical
frame ten feet high and six feet wide with a clear glass front so that
volunteers can see the marbles as they fall and collect, in the bins.
Normally, more balis fall in the center bins than in the outer ones, and
the overall distribution looks like a bell-shaped curve.

As with the REG, Jahn and Dunne had volunteers sit in front of the
machine and try to make more balls land in the outer bins than in the
center ones. Again, over the course of a large number of runs, the
operators were able to create a small but measurable shift in where the
balls landed. In the REG experiments the volunteers only exerted a PK
effect on microscopic processes, the decay of a radioactive substance,
but the pinball experiments revealed that test subjects could use PK to
influence objects in the everyday world as well. What’s more, the
“signatures” of individuals who had participated in the REG
experiments surfaced again in the pinball experiments, suggesting that
the PK abilities of any given individual remain the same from
experiment to experiment, but vary from individual to individual just as
other talents vary. Jahn and Dunne state, “While small segments of these
results might reasonably be discounted as falling too close to chance
behavior to justify revision of prevailing scientific tenets, taken in
concert the entire ensemble establishes an incontrovertible aberration of
substantial proportions.” 6

Jahn and Dunne think their findings may explain the propensity some
individuals seem to have for jinxing machinery and causing equipment
to malfunction. One such individual was physicist Wolfgang Pauli,
whose talents in this area are so legendary that physicists have jokingly
dubbed it the “Pauli effect.” It is said that Pauli’s mere presence in a
laboratory would cause a glass apparatus to explode, or a sensitive
measuring device to crack in half. In one particularly famous incident a
physicist wrote Pauli to say that at least he couldn’t blame Pauli for the
recent and mysterious disintegration of a complicated piece of
equipment since Pauli had not been present, only to find that Pauli had
been passing by the laboratory in a train at the precise moment of the
mishap! Jahn and Dunne think the famous “Gremlin effect,” the
tendency of carefully tested pieces of equipment to undergo
inexplicable malfunctions at the most absurdly inopportune moments,
often reported by pilots, aircrew, and military operators, may also be an
example of unconscious PK activity.

If our minds can reach out and alter the movement of a cascade of

A Pocketful of Miracles


marbles or the operation of a machine, what strange alchemy might
account for such an ability? Jahn and Dunne believe that since all known
physical processes possess a wave/particle duality, it is not unreasonable
to assume that consciousness does as well. When it is partielelike,
consciousness would appear to be localized in our heads, but in its
wavelike aspect, consciousness, like all wave phenomena, could also
produce remote influence effects. They believe one of these remote
influence effects is PK.

But Jahn and Dunne do not stop here. They believe that reality is itself
the result of the interface between the waveu’ke aspects of
consciousness and the wave patterns of matter. However, like Bohm,
they do not believe that consciousness or the material world can be
productively represented in isolation, or even that PK can be thought of
as the transmission of some kind of force. “The message may be more
subtle than that,” says Jahn. “It may be that such concepts are simply
unviable, that we cannot talk profitably about an abstract environment
or an abstract consciousness. The only thing we can experience is the
interpenetration of the two in some way.” 7

If PK cannot be thought of as the transmission of some kind of force,
what terminology might better sum up the interaction of mind and matter?
In thinking that is again similar to Bohm’s, Jahn and Dunne propose that
PK actually involves an exchange of information between consciousness
and physical reality, an exchange that should be thought of less as a flow
between the mental and the material, and more as a resonance between
the two. The importance of resonance was even sensed and commented
on by the volunteers in the PK experiments, in that the most frequently
mentioned factor associated with a successful performance was the
attainment of a feeling of “resonance” with the machine. One volunteer
described the feeling as “a state of immersion in the process which leads
to a loss of awareness of myself. I don’t feel any direct control over the
device, more like a marginal influence when I’m in resonance with the
machine. It’s like being in a canoe; when it goes where I want, I flow
with it. When it doesn’t I try to break the flow and give it a chance to get
back m resonance with me. 1 ‘ 8

Jahn and Dunne’s ideas are similar to Bohm’s in several other key
ways. Like Bohm, they believe that the concepts we use to describe
reality — electron, wavelength, consciousness, time, frequency — are
useful only as “information-organizing categories” and possess no
independent status. They also believe that all theories, including their



own, are only metaphors. Although they do not identify themselves with
the holographic model (and their theory does in fact differ from Bohm’s
thinking in several significant ways), they do recognize the overlap. “To
the extent that we’re talking about a rather basic reliance on wave
mechanical behavior, there is some commonality between what we’re
postulating and the holographic idea,” says Jahn. “It gives to
consciousness the capacity to function in a wave mechanical sense and
thereby to avail itself, one way or another, of all of space and time.” 9

Dunne agrees: “In some sense the holographic model could be per-
ceived as addressing the mechanism whereby the consciousness in-
teracts with that wave mechanical, aboriginal, sensible muchness, and
somehow manages to convert it into usable information. In another
sense, if you imagine that the individual consciousness has its own
characteristic wave patterns, you could view it — metaphorically, of
course — as the laser of a particular frequency that intersects with a
specific pattern in the cosmic hologram.” 10

As might be expected, Jahn and Dunne’s work has been greeted with
considerable resistance by the scientific orthodox community, but it is
gaining acceptance in some quarters. A good deal of PEAR’s funding
comes from the McDonnell Foundation, created by James S. McDonnell
III, of the McDonnell Douglas Corporation, and the New York Times
Magazine recently devoted an article to Jahn and Dunne’s work. Jahn
and Dunne themselves remain undaunted by the fact that they are
devoting so much time and effort to exploring the parameters of a
phenomenon considered nonexistent by most other scientists. As Jahn
states, “My sense of the importance of this topic is much higher than
anything else I’ve ever worked on.” 11

Psychokinesis on a Grander Scale

So far, PK effects produced in the lab have been limited to relatively
small objects, but the evidence suggests that some individuals at least
can use PK to bring about even greater changes in the physical world.
Biologist Lyal! Watson, author of the bestselling book Supernature and
a scientist who has studied paranormal events all over the world,
encountered one such individual while visiting the Philippines. The man
was one of the so-called Philippine psychic healers, but instead of

A Pocketful of Miracles


touching a patient, all he did was hold his hand about ten inches over the
person’s body, point at his or her skin, and an incision would appear
instantaneously. Watson not only witnessed several displays of the man’s
psych ok inetic surgical skills, but once, when the man made a broader
sweep with his finger than usual, Watson received an incision on the
back of his own hand. He bears the scar to this day.”

There is evidence that PK abilities can also be used to heal bones.
Several examples of such healings have been reported by Dr. Rex
Gardner, a physician at Sunderland District General Hospital in England.
One interesting aspect of a 1983 article in the British Medical Journal is
that Gardner, an avid investigator of miracles, presents contemporary
miraculous healings side by side with examples of virtually identical
healings collected by seventh-century English historian and theologian
the Venerable Bede.

The present-day healing involved a group of Lutheran nuns living in
Darmstadt, Germany. The nuns were building a chapel when one of the
sisters broke through a freshly cemented floor and fell onto a wooden
beam below. She was rushed to the hospital where X rays revealed that
she had a compound pelvic fracture. Instead of relying on standard
medical techniques, the nuns held an all-night prayer vigil. Despite the
doctors’ insistence that the sister should remain in traction for many
weeks, the nuns took her home two days later and continued to pray and
perform a laying on of hands. To their surprise, immediately following
the laying on of hands, the sister stood up from her bed, free of the
excruciating pain of the fracture and apparently healed. It took her only
two weeks to achieve a full recovery, whereupon she returned to the
hospital and presented herself to her astonished doctor. 1 ”

Although Gardner does not try to account for this or any of the other
healings he discusses in his article, PK seems a likely explanation. Given
that the natural healing of a fracture is a lengthy process, and even the
miraculous regeneration of Michelli’s pelvis took several months, it is
suggested that perhaps the unconscious PK abilities of the nuns
performing the laying on of hands accomplished the task.

Gardner describes a similar healing that occurred in the seventh
Century during the building of the church at Hexham, England, and
involving St. Wilfrid, then the bishop of Hexham. During the construc-
tion of the church a mason named Bothelm fell from a great height,
breaking both his arms and legs. As he lay dying, Wilfrid prayed over
him and asked the other workmen to join him. They did, “the breath



of life returned” to Bothelm, and he healed rapidly. Since the healing
apparently did not take place until St. Wilfred asked the other workmen
to join him, one wonders if St. Wilfred was the catalyst, or again if it was
the combined unconscious PK of the entire assemblage?

Dr. William Tufts Brigham, the curator of the Bishop Museum in
Honolulu and a noted botanist who devoted much of his private life to
investigating the paranormal, recorded an incident in which a broken
bone was instantaneously healed by a native Hawaiian shaman, or
kahuna. The incident was witnessed by a friend of Brigham’s named J.
A. K. Combs. Combs’s grandmother-in-law was considered one of the
most powerful women kahunas in the islands, and once, while attending
a party at the woman’s home, Combs observed her abilities firsthand.

On the occasion in question, one of the guests slipped and fell in the
beach sand, breaking his leg so severely that the bone ends pressed
visibly out against the skin. Recognizing the seriousness of the break,
Combs recommended that the man be taken to a hospital immediately,
but the elderly kahuna would hear none of it Kneeling beside the man,
she straightened his leg and pushed on the area where the fractured
bones pressed out against his skin. After praying and meditating for
several minutes she stood up and announced that the healing was
finished. The man rose wonderingly to his feet, took a step, and then
another. He was completely healed and his leg showed no indication of
the break in any way. 14

Mass Psychokinesis in Eighteenth-Century France

Such incidents notwithstanding, one of the most astounding manifes-
tations of psychokinesis, and one of the most remarkable displays of
miraculous events ever recorded, took place in Paris in the first half of
the eighteenth century. The events centered around a puritanical sect of
Dutch-influenced Catholics known as the Jansenists, and were
precipitated by the death of a saintly and revered Jansenist deacon
named Francois de Paris. Although few people living today have even
heard of the Jansenist miracles, they were one of the most talked about
events in Europe for the better part of a century.

To understand fully the Jansenist miracles, it is necessary to know a
little about the historical events that preceded Francois de Paris’s

A Pocketful of Miracles


death. Jansenism was founded in the early seventeenth century, and
from the start it was at odds with both the Roman Catholic Church and
the French monarchy. Many of the beliefs diverged sharply with stan-
dard church doctrine but it was a popular movement and quickly gained
followers among the French populace. Most damning of all, it was
viewed by both the papacy and King Louis XV, a devout Catholic, as
Protestantism only masquerading as Catholicism. As a result, both the
church and the king were constantly maneuvering to undermine the
movement’s power. One obstacle to these maneuverings, and one of the
factors that contributed to the movement’s popularity, was that Jansenist
leaders seemed especially skilled at performing miraculous healings.
Nonetheless, the church and the monarchy persevered, causing fierce
debates to rage throughout France. It was on May 1, 1727, at the height
of this power struggle, that Francois de Paris died and was interred in the
parish cemetery of Saint-Medard, Paris.

Because of the abbe’s saintly reputation, worshipers began to gather at
his tomb, and from the beginning a host of miraculous healings were
reported. The aiiments thus cured included cancerous tumors, paralysis,
deafness, arthritis, rheumatism, ulcerous sores, persistent fevers,
prolonged hemorrhaging, and blindness. But this was not all. The
mourners also started to experience strange involuntary spasms or
convulsions and to undergo the most amazing contortions of their limbs.
These seizures quickly proved contagious, spreading like a brush fire
until the streets were packed with men, women, and children, all
twisting and writhing as if caught up in a surreal enchantment.

It was while they were in this fitful and trancelike state that the
“convulsionaires,” as they have come to be called, displayed the most
phenomenal of their talents. One was the ability to endure without harm
an almost unimaginable variety of physical tortures. These in* eluded
severe beatings, blows from both heavy and sharp objects, and
strangulation — all with no sign of injury, or even the slightest trace of
wounds or bruises.

What makes these miraculous events so unique is that they were
witnessed by literally thousands of observers. The frenzied gatherings
around Abbe Paris’s tomb were by no means short-lived. The cemetery
and the streets surrounding it were crowded day and night for years, and
even two decades later miracles were still being reported (to give some
idea of the enormity of the phenomena, in 1733 it was noted in the
public records that over 3,000 volunteers were



needed simply to assist the convulsionaires and make sure, for example,
that the female participants did not become immodestly exposed during
their seizures). As a result, the supernormal abilities of the
convulsionaires became an international cause celebre, and thousands
flocked to see them, including individuals from all social strata and
officials from every educational, religious, and governmental institution
imaginable; numerous accounts, both official and unofficial, of the
miracles witnessed are recorded in the documents of the time.

Moreover, many of the witnesses, such as the investigators from the
Roman Catholic Church, had a vested interest in refuting the Jansenist
miracles, but they still went away confirming them (the Roman Catholic
Church later remedied this embarrassing state of affairs by conceding
that the miracles existed but were the work of the devil, hence proving
that the Jansenists were depraved).

One investigator, a member of the Paris Parliament named
Louis-Basile Carre de Montgeron, witnessed enough miracles to fill four
thick volumes on the subject, which he published in 1737 under the title
La Verite des Miracles. In the work he provides numerous examples of
the convulsionaries’ apparent invulnerability to torture. In one instance a
twenty-year-old convulsion aire named Jeanne Maulet leaned against a
stone wall while a volunteer from the crowd, “a very strong man,”
delivered one hundred blows to her stomach with a thirty -pound
hammer (the convulsionaires themselves asked to be tortured because
they said it relieved the excruciating pain of the convulsions). To test the
force of the blows, Montgeron himself then took the hammer and tried it
on the stone wall against which the girl had leaned. He wrote, “At the
twenty -fifth blow the stone upon which I struck, which had been shaken
by the preceding efforts, suddenly became loose and fell on the other
side of the wall, making an aperture more than half a foot in size.” 10

Montgeron describes another instance in which a convulsionaire bent
back into an arc so that her lower back was supported by “the sharp point
of a peg.” She then asked that a fifty -pound stone attached to a rope be
hoisted to “an extreme height” and allowed to fall with all its weight on
her stomach. The stone was hoisted up and allowed to fall again and
again, but the woman seemed completely unaffected by iL She
effortlessly maintained her awkward position, suffered no pain or harm,
and walked away from the ordeal without even so much as a mark on the
flesh of her back. Montgeron noted that while the ordeal was in progress
she kept crying out, “Strike harder, harder!” 16

A Pocketful of Miracles


In fact, it appears that nothing could harm the convulsionaires. They
could not be hurt by the blows of metal rods, chains, or timbers. The
strongest men could not choke them. Some were crucified and afterward
showed no trace of wounds. 17 Most mind-boggling of ail, they could not
even be cut or punctured with knives, swords, or hatchets! Montgeron
cites an incident in which the sharpened point of an iron drill was held
against the stomach of a convulsionaire and then pounded so violently
with a hammer that it seemed ” as if it would penetrate through to the
spine and rupture all the entrails.” But it didn’t, and the convulsionaire
maintained an “expression of perfect rapture,” crying, “Oh, that does me
good! Courage, brother; strike twice as hard, if you can!” 18

Invulnerability was not the only talent the Jansenists displayed during
their seizures. Some became clairvoyant and were able to “discern
hidden things. ” Others could read even when their eyes were closed and
tightly bandaged, and instances of levitation were reported. One of the
levitators, an abbe named Bescherand from Montpellier, was so
“forcibly lifted into the air” during his convulsions that even when
witnesses tried to hold him down they could not succeed in keeping him
from rising up off of the ground. 19

Although we have all but forgotten about the Jansenist miracles today,
they were far from ignored by the intelligentsia of the time. The niece of
the mathematician and philosopher Pascal succeeded in having a severe
ulcer in her eye vanish within hours as the result of a Jansenist miracle.
When King Louis XV tried unsuccessfully to stop the convulsionaires by
closing the cemetery of Saint-Medard, Voltaire quipped, “God was
forbidden, by order of the King, to work any miracles there.” And in his
Philosophical Essays the Scottish philosopher David Hume wrote,
” There surely never was so great a number of miracles ascribed to one
person as those which were lately said to have been wrought in France
upon the tomb of Abbe Paris. Many of the miracles were immediately
proved upon the spot, before judges of unquestioned credit and
distinction, in a learned age, and on the most eminent theatre that is now
in the world. ”

How are we to explain the miracles produced by the convulsionaires?
Although Bohm is willing to consider the possibility of PK and other
paranormal phenomena, he prefers not to speculate about specific events
such as the supernormal abilities of the Jansenists. But once again, if we
take the testimony of so many witnesses seriously, unless we are willing
to concede that God favored the Jansenist Catho-



lies over the Roman, PK seems the likely explanation. That some kind of
psychic functioning was involved is strongly suggested by the ap-
pearance of other psychic abilities, such as clairvoyance, during the
seizures. In addition, we have already looked at a number of examples
where intense faith and hysteria have triggered the deeper forces of the
mind, and these too were present in ample portions. In fact, instead of
being produced by one individual, the psyehokinetic effects may have
been created by the combined fervor and belief of all those present, and
this might account for the unusual vigor of the manifestations. This idea
is not new. In the 1920s the great Harvard psychologist William
McDougall also suggested that religious miracles might be the result of
the collective psychic powers of large numbers of worshipers.

PK would explain many of the convulsionaire’s seeming invul-
nerabilities. In the case of Jeanne Maulet it could be argued that she
unconsciously used PK to block the effect of the hammer blows. If the
convulsionaires were unconsciously using PK to take control of chains,
timbers, and knives, and stop them in their tracks at the precise moment
of impact, it would also explain why these objects left no marks or
bruises. Similarly, when individuals tried to strangle the Jansenists,
perhaps their hands were held in place by PK and although they thought
they were squeezing flesh, they were really only flexing in the

Reprogramming the Cosmic Motion Picture Projector

PK does not explain every aspect of the convulsionaires’ invulnerability,
however. There is the problem of inertia — the tendency of an object in
motion to stay in motion — to consider. When a fifty -pound stone or a
piece of timber comes crashing down, it carries with it a lot of energy,
and when it is stopped in its tracks, the energy has to go somewhere. For
example, if a person in a suit of armor is struck by a thirty -pound
hammer, although the metal of the armor may deflect the blow, the
person is still considerably shaken. In the case of Jeanne Maulet it
appears that the energy somehow bypassed her body and was transferred
to the wall behind her, for as Montgeron noted, the stone was ” shaken by
the efforts.” But in the case of the woman who was arched and had the
fifty -pound stone dropped on her abdomen, the

A Pocketful of Miracles


matter is less clear. One wonders why she wasn’t driven into the ground
like a croquet hoop, or why, when they were struck with timbers, the
convulsionaires were not knocked off their feet? Where did the
deflected energy go?

Again, the holographic view of reality provides a possible answer. As
we have seen, Bohm believes that consciousness and matter are just
different aspects of the same fundamental something, a something that
has its origins in the implicate order. Some researchers believe this
suggests that the consciousness may be able to do much more than make
a few psyehokinetic changes in the material world. For example, Grof
believes that if the implicate and explicate orders are an accurate
description of reality, “it is conceivable that certain unusual states of
consciousness could mediate direct experience of, and intervention in,
the implicate order. It would thus be possible to modify phenomena in
the phenomenal world by influencing their generative matrix.” 20 Put
another way, in addition to psychokinetically moving objects around,
the mind may also be able to reach down and reprogram the cosmic
motion picture projector that created those objects in the first place.
Thus, not only could the conventionally recognized rules of nature, such
as inertia, be completely bypassed, but the mind could alter and reshape
the material world in ways far more dramatic than even psychokinesis

That this or some other theory must be true is evidenced in another
supernormal ability displayed by various individuals throughout history:
invulnerability to fire. In his book The Physical Phenomena of
Mysticism, Thurston gives numerous examples of saints who possessed
this ability, one of the most famous being St. Francis of Paula. Not only
could St. Francis of Paula hold burning embers in his hands without
being harmed, but at his canonization hearings in 1519 eight
eyewitnesses testified that they had seen him walk unharmed through the
roaring flames of a furnace to repair one of the furnace’s broken walls.

The account brings to mind the Old Testament story of Shadrach,
Meshach, and Abednego. After capturing Jerusalem, King Nebuchad-
nezzar ordered everyone to worship a statue of himself. Shadrach,
Meshach, and Abednego refused, so Nebuchadnezzar ordered them
thrown into a furnace so “exceeding hot” that the flames even burned up
the men who threw them in. However, because of their faith, they
survived the fire unscathed, and came out with their hair unsinged, their
clothing unharmed, and not even the smell of fire upon them. It



seems that challenges to faith, such as the one King Louis XV tried to
impose on the Jansenists, have engendered miracles in more than one

Although the kahunas of Hawaii do not walk through roaring furnaces,
there are reports that they can stroll across hot lava without being
harmed. Brigham told of meeting three kahunas who promised to
perform the feat for him, and of following them on a lengthy trek to a
lava flow near the erupting Kilauea. They chose a 1 50-foot-wide lava
flow that had cooled enough to support their weight, but was so hot that
patches of incandescence still coursed through its surface. As Brigham
watched, the kahunas took off their sandals and started to recite the
lengthy prayers necessary to protect them as they strolled out onto the
barely hardened molten rock.

As it turned out, the kahunas had told Brigham earlier that they could
confer their fire immunity on htm if he wanted to join them, and he had
bravely agreed. But as he faced the baking heat of the lava he had second
and even third thoughts. “The upshot of the matter was that I sat tight
and refused to take off my boots,” Brigham wrote in his account of the
incident. After they finished invoking the gods, the oldest kahuna
scampered out onto the lava and crossed the 150 feet without harm.
Impressed, but still adamant about not going, Brigham stood up to watch
the next kahuna, only to be given a shove that forced him to break into a
run to keep from falling face first onto the incandescent rock.

And run Brigham did. When he reached higher ground on the other
side he discovered that one of his boots had burned off and his socks
were on fire. But, miraculously, his feet were completely unharmed. The
kahunas had also suffered no harm and were rolling in laughter at
Brigham’s shock. “I laughed too,” wrote Brigham. “I was never so
relieved in my life as I was to find that I was safe. There is little more
that I can tell of this experience. I had a sensation of intense heat on my
face and body, but almost no sensation in my feet.” 111

The convulsionaires also occasionally displayed complete immunity
to fire. The two most famous of these “human salamanders” — in the
middle ages the term salamander referred to a mythological lizard
believed to live in fire — were Marie Sonnet and Gabrielle Moler. On one
occasion, and tn the presence of numerous witnesses, including
Mont-geron, Sonnet stretched herself on two chairs over a blazing fire
and remained there for half an hour. Neither she nor her clothing showed

A Pocketful of Miracles


any ill effects. In another instance she sat with her feet in a brazier full of
burning coals. As with Brigham, her shoes and stockings burned off, but
her feet were unharmed.”

Gabrielle Moler’s exploits were even more dumbfounding. In addition
to being impervious to the thrusts of swords and blows delivered by a
shovel, she could stick her head into a roaring hearth fire and hold it
there without suffering any injury. Eyewitnesses report that afterward
her clothing was so hot it could barely be touched, yet her hair, eyelashes,
and eyebrows were never so much as singed. 23 No doubt she was great
fun at parties.

Actually the Jansenists were not the first convulsionary movement in
France. In the late 1600s, when King Louis XIV tried to purge the
country of the unabashedly Protestant Huguenots, a group of Huguenot
resistors in the valley of the Cevennes and known as the Cami-sards
displayed similar abilities. In an official report sent to Rome, one of the
persecutors, a prior named Abbe du Chayla, complained that no matter
what he did, he could not succeed in harming the Camisards. When he
ordered them shot, the musket balls would be found flattened between
their clothing and their skin. When he closed their hands upon burning
coals, they were not harmed, and when he wrapped them head to toe in
cotton soaked with oil and set them on fire, they did not burn. 24

As if this weren’t enough, Claris, the Camisard leader, ordered that a
pyre be built and then climbed to the top of it to deliver an ecstatic
speech. In the presence of six hundred witnesses he ordered the pyre be
set on fire and continued to rant as the flames rose above his head. After
the pyre was completely consumed, Claris remained, unharmed and with
no mark of the fire on his hair or clothing. The head of the French troops
sent to subdue the Camisards, a colonel named Jean Cavalier, was later
exiled to England where he wrote a book on the event in 1 707 entitled A
Cry from the Deserr As for Abbe du Chayla, he was eventually
murdered by the Camisards during a retaliatory raid. Unlike some of
them, he possessed no special invulnerability.- 6

Literally hundreds of credible accounts of fire immunity exist It is
reported that when Bernadette of Lourdes was in ecstasy she was also
impervious to fire. According to witnesses, on one occasion her hand
dropped so close to a burning candle while she was in trance that the
flames licked around her fingers. One of the individuals present was Dr.
Dozous, the municipal physician of Lourdes. Being of quick mind,



Dozous timed the event and noted that it was a full ten minutes before
she came out of trance and removed her hand. He iater wrote, “I saw it
with my own eyes. But I swear, if anyone had tried to make me believe
such a story I would have laughed him to scorn.’* 27

On September 7,1871, the New York Herald reported that Nathan
Coker, an elderly Negro blacksmith living in Easton, Maryland, could
handle red-hot metal without being harmed. In the presence of a com-
mittee that included several doctors, he heated an iron shovel until it was
incandescent and then held it against the soles of his feet until it was
cool. He also licked the edge of the red-hot shovel and poured melted
lead shot in his mouth, allowing it to run over his teeth and gums until it
solidified. After each of these feats the doctors examined him and found
no trace of injury. 3 ”

While on a hunting trip in 1927 in the Tennessee mountains, K. R.
Wissen, a New York physician, encountered a twelve -year-old boy who
was similarly impervious. Wissen watched the boy handle red-hot irons
out of a fireplace with impunity. The boy told Wissen he had discovered
his ability by accident when he picked up a red-hot horseshoe in his
uncle’s blacksmith shop. 29 The pit of flaming embers the Grosvenors
watched Mohotty walk through was twenty-feet long and measured
1328 degrees Fahrenheit on the National Geographic team’s
thermometers. In the May 1959 issue of the Atlantic Monthly, Dr.
Leonard Feinberg of the University of Illinois reports witnessing
another Ceylonese fire -walking ritual during which the natives carried
red-hot iron pots on their heads without being harmed. In an article in
Psychiatric Quarterly, psychiatrist Berthold Schwarz reports watching
Appalachian Pentecostals hold their hands in an acetylene flame
without being harmed, 30 and so on, and so on.

The Laws of Physics as Habits and Realities
Both Potential and Real

Just as it is hard to imagine where the deflected energy goes in some of
the examples of PK we have looked at, it is equally difficult to
understand where the energy of a red-hot iron pot goes while the pot is
resting flat against the hair and flesh of a Ceylonese native’s head.

A Pocketful of Miracles


But if consciousness can mediate directly in the implicate order, it
becomes a more tractable problem. Again, rather than being due to some
undiscovered energy or law of physics (such as some kind of insulating
force field) that operates within the framework of reality, it would result
from activity on an even more fundamental level and involve the
processes that create both the physical universe and the laws of physics
in the first place.

Looked at another way, the ability of consciousness to shift from one
entire reality to another suggests that the usually inviolate rule ths.tfire
burns human fiesh may only be one program in the cosmic computer,
but a program that has been repeated so often it has become one of
nature’s habits. As has been mentioned, according to the holographic
idea, matter is also a kind of habit and is constantly born anew out of the
implicate, just as the shape of a fountain is created anew out of the
constant flow of water that gives it form. Peat humorously refers to the
repetitious nature of this process as one of the universe’s neuroses.
“When you have a neurosis you tend to repeat the same pattern in your
life, or do the same action, as if there’s a memory built up and the thing is
stuck with that,” he says. “I tend to think things like chairs and tables are
like that also. They’re a sort of material neurosis, a repetition. But there
is something subtler going on, a constant enfolding and unfolding. In
this sense chairs and tables are just habits in this flux, but the Mux is the
reality, even if we tend only to see the habit.” 31

Indeed, given that the universe and the laws of physics that govern it
are also products of this flux, then they, too, must be viewed as habits.
Clearly they are habits that are deeply ingrained in the holo-movement,
but supernormal talents such as immunity to fire indicate that, despite
their seeming constancy, at least some of the rules that govern reality
can be suspended. This means the laws of physics are not set in stone,
but are more like Shainberg’s vortices, whirlpools of such vast inertial
power that they are as fixed in the holomovement as our own habits and
deeply held convictions are fixed in our thoughts.

Grof s proposal that altered states of consciousness may be required in
order to make such changes in the implicate is aiso attested to by the
frequency with which fire immunity is associated with heightened faith
and religious zeal. The pattern that began to take shape in the last
chapter continues, and its message becomes increasingly



clear — the deeper and more emotionally charged our beliefs, the greater
the changes; we can make in both our bodies and reality itself.

At this point we might ask, if consciousness can make such extraor-
dinary alterations under special circumstances, what role does it play in
the creation of our day-to-day reality? Opinions are extremely varied. In
private conversation Bohm admits to believing that the universe is all
“thought” and reality exists oniy in what we think, 32 but again he prefers
not to speculate about miraculous occurrences. Pribram is similarly
reticent to comment on specific events but does believe a number of
different potential realities exist and consciousness has a certain amount
of latitude in choosing which one manifests. “I don’t believe anything
goes,” he says, “but there are a lot of worlds out there that we don’t
understand.” 33

After years of firsthand experiences with the miraculous, Watson is
bolder. “I have no doubt that reality is in a very large part a construct of
the imagination. I am not speaking as a particle physicist or even as
someone who is totally aware of what’s going on in the frontier of that
discipline, but I think we have the capacity to change the world around
us in quite fundamental ways” (Watson, who was once enthusiastic
about the holographic idea, is no longer convinced that any current
theory in physics can adequately explain the supernormal abilities of the
mind). 3 ”

Gordon Globus, a professor of psychiatry and philosophy at the
University of California at Irvine, has a different but similar view.
Globus thinks the holographic theory is correct in its assertion that the
mind constructs concrete reality out of the raw material of the implicate.
However, he has also been greatly influenced by anthropologist Carlos
Castaneda’s now famous otherworldly experiences with the Yaqui
Indian shaman, Don Juan. In stark contrast to Pribram, he believes that
the seemingly inexhaustible array of “separate realities” Castaneda
experienced under Don Juan’s tutelage — and indeed even the equally
vast array of realities we experience during ordinary
dreaming — indicate that there are an infinite number of potential reali-
ties enfolded in the implicate. Moreover, because the holographic
mechanisms the brain uses to construct everyday reality are the same
ones it uses to construct our dreams and the realities we experience
during Castanedaesque altered states of consciousness, he believes all
three types of reality are fundamentally the same. 3 *

A Pocketful of Miracles


Does Consciousness Create Subatomic Particles or
Not Create Subatomic Particles, That is the Question

This difference of opinion indicates once again that the holographic
theory is still very much an idea in the making, not unlike a newly
formed Pacific island whose volcanic activity keeps it from having
clearly defined shores. Although some might use this lack of consensus
to criticize it, it should be remembered that Darwin’s theory of evolution,
certainly one of the most potent and successful ideas science has ever
produced, is also still very much in a state of flux, and evolutionary
theorists continue to debate its scope, interpretation, regulatory
mechanisms, and ramifications.

The difference of opinion also reveals just how complex a puzzle
miracles are. Jahn and Dunne offer yet another opinion on the role
consciousness plays in the creation of day-to-day reality, and although it
differs from one of Bohm’s basic premises, because of the possible
insight it offers into the process by which miracles are effected, it
deserves our attention.

Unlike Bohm, Jahn and Dunne believe subatomic particles do not
possess a distinct reality until consciousness enters the picture. “I think
we have long since passed the place in high energy physics where we’re
examining the structure of a passive universe,” Jahn states. “I think we’re
into the domain where the interplay of consciousness in the environment
is taking place on such a primary scale that we are indeed creating
reality by any reasonable definition of the term.”™

As has been mentioned, this is the view held by most physicists.
However, Jahn and Dunne’s position differs from the mainstream in an
important way. Most physicists would reject the idea that the interplay
between consciousness and the subatomic world could in any way be
used to explain PK, let alone miracles. In fact, the majority of physicists
not only ignore any implications this interplay might have but actually
behave as if it doesn’t exist. “Most physicists develop a somewhat
schizophrenic view,” says quantum theorist Fritz Eohrlich of Syracuse
University. “On the one hand they accept the standard interpretation of
quantum theory. On the other they insist on the reality of quantum
systems even when these are not observed.” 37

This bizarre I’m-not-going-to-think-about-it-even-when-I-know-it’s-



true attitude keeps many physicists from considering even the philo-
sophical implications of quantum physics’ most incredible findings. As N.
David Mermin, a physicist at Cornell University, points out, physicists
fall into three categories: a small minority is troubled by the
philosophical implications; a second group has elaborate reasons why
they are not troubled, but their explanations tend “to miss the point
entirely”; and a third group has no elaborate explanations but also
refuses to say why they aren’t troubled. “Their position is unassailable,”
says Mermin. 38

Jahn and Dunne are not so timid. They believe that instead of discov-
ering particles, physicists may actually be creating them. As evidence,
they cite a recently discovered subatomic particle called an anomalon,
whose properties vary from laboratory to laboratory. Imagine owning a
car that had a different color and different features depending on who
drove it! This is very curious and seems to suggest that an anomalon’s
reality depends on who finds/creates it. 39

Similar evidence may also be found in another subatomic particle. In
the 1930s Pauli proposed the existence of a massless particle called a
neutrino to solve an outstanding problem concerning radioactivity. For
years the neutrino was only an idea, but then in 1957 physicists
discovered evidence of its existence. In more recent years, however,
physicists have realized that if the neutrino possessed some mass, it
would solve several even thornier problems than the one facing Pauli,
and lo and behold in 1 980 evidence started to come in that the neutrino
had a small but measurable mass! This is not all. As it turned out, only
laboratories in the Soviet Union discovered neutrinos with mass. Labo-
ratories in the United States did not. This remained true for the better
part of the 1 980s, and although other laboratories have now duplicated
the Soviet findings, the situation is still unresolved, 4 ”

Is it possible that the different properties displayed by neutrinos are
due at least in part to the changing expectations and different cultural
biases of the physicists who searched for them? If so, such a state of
affairs raises an interesting question. If physicists do not discover the
subatomic world but create it, why do some particles, such as electrons,
appear to have a stable reality no matter who observes them? In other
words, why does a physics student with no knowledge of an electron
still discover the same characteristics that a seasoned physicist

One possible answer is that our perceptions of the world may not be
based solely on the information we receive through our five senses.

A Pocketful of Miracles


As fantastic as this may sound, a very good case can be made for such a
notion. Before explaining, I would like to relate an occurrence I
witnessed in the middle 1970s. My father had hired a professional
hypnotist to entertain a group of friends at his house and had invited me
to attend the event. After quickly determining the hypnotic suscep-
tibility of the various individuals present, the hypnotist chose a friend of
my father’s named Tom as his subject. This was the first time Tom had
ever met the hypnotist.

Tom proved to be a very good subject, and within seconds the hypnotist
had him in a deep trance. He then proceeded with the usual tricks
performed by stage hypnotists. He convinced Tom there was a giraffe in
the room and had Tom gaping in wonder. He told Tom that a potato was
really an apple and had Tom eat it with gusto. But the highlight of the
evening was when he told Tom that when he came out of trance, his
teenage daughter, Laura, would be completely invisible to him. Then,
after having Laura stand directly in front of the chair in which Tom was
sitting, the hypnotist awakened him and asked him if he could see her.

Tom looked around the room and his gaze appeared to pass right
through his giggling daughter. “No,” he replied. The hypnotist asked
Tom if he was certain, and again, despite Laura’s rising giggles, he
answered no. Then the hypnotist went behind Laura so he was hidden
from Tom’s view and pulled an object out of his pocket. He kept the
object carefully concealed so that no one in the room could see it, and
pressed it against the small of Laura’s back. He asked Tom to identify
the object. Tom leaned forward as if staring directly through Laura’s
stomach and said that it was a watch. The hypnotist nodded and asked if
Tom could read the watch’s inscription. Tom squinted as if struggling to
make out the writing and recited both the name of the watch’s owner
(which happened to be a person unknown to any of us in the room) and
the message. The hypnotist then revealed that the object was indeed a
watch and passed it around the room so that everyone could see that
Tom had read its inscription correctly.

When I talked to Tom afterward, he said that his daughter had been
absolutely invisible to him. All he had seen was the hypnotist standing
and holding a watch cupped in the palm of his hand. Had the hypnotist
let him leave without telling him what was going on, he never would
have known he wasn’t perceiving normal consensus reality.

Obviously Tom’s perception of the watch was not based on informa-
tion he was receiving through his five senses. Where was he getting



the information from? One explanation is that he was obtaining it
telepathically from someone else’s mind, in this case, the hypnotist’s.
The ability of hypnotized individuals to “tap” into the senses of other
people has been reported by other investigators. The British physicist Sir
William Barrett found evidence of the phenomenon in a series of
experiments with a young girl. After hypnotizing the girl he told her that
she would taste everything he tasted. ” Standing behind the girl, whose
eyes I had securely bandaged, I took up some salt and put it in my mouth;
instantly she sputtered and exclaimed, ‘What for are you putting salt in
my mouth?’ Then I tried sugar; she said ‘That’s better’; asked what it was
like, she said ‘Sweet’ Then mustard, pepper, ginger, et cetera were tried;
each was named and apparently tasted by the girl when I put them in my
own mouth,” 41

In his book Experiments in Distant Influence the Soviet physiologist
Leonid Vasiliev cites a German study conducted in the 1950s that
produced similar findings. In that study, the hypnotized subject not only
tasted what the hypnotist tasted, but blinked when a light was flashed in
the hypnotist’s eyes, sneezed when the hypnotist took a whiff of
ammonia, heard the ticking of a watch held to the hypnotist’s ear, and
experienced pain when the hypnotist pricked himself with a needle — all
done in a manner that safeguarded against her obtaining the information
through normal sensory cues.” –

Our ability to tap into the senses of others is not limited to hypnotic
states. In a now famous series of experiments physicists Harold Put-hoff
and Russell Targ of the Stanford Research Institute in California found
that just about everyone they tested had a capacity they call “remote
viewing,” the ability to describe accurately what a distant test subject is
seeing. They found that individual after individual could remote-view
simply by relaxing and describing whatever images came into their
minds. 43 Puthoff and Targ’s findings have been duplicated by dozens of
laboratories around the world, indicating that remote viewing is
probably a widespread latent ability in all of us.

The Princeton Anomalies Research lab has also corroborated Puthoff
and Targ’s findings. In one study Jahn himself served as the receiver and
tried to perceive what a colleague was observing in Paris, a city Jahn has
never visited. In addition to seeing a bustling street, an image of a knight
in armor came into Jahn’s mind. It later turned out that the sender was
standing in front of a government building ornamented with statuary of
historical military figures, one of whom was a knight in armor. 44

A Pocketful of Miracles


So it appears that we are deeply interconnected with each other in yet
another way, a situation that is not so strange in a holographic universe.
Moreover, these interconnections manifest even when we are not
consciously aware of them. Studies have shown that when a person in
one room is given an electric shock, it will register in the polygraph
readings of a person in another room.’ > A light flashed in a test subject’s
eyes will register in the EEG readings of a test subject isolated in another
room, 46 and even the blood volume of a test subject’s finger changes — as
measured by a plethysinograph, a sensitive indicator of autonomic
nervous system functioning — when a “sender” in another room
encounters the name of someone they know while reading a list
composed mainly of names unknown to them. 41

Given both our deep interconnectedness and our ability to construct
entirely convincing realities out of information received via this inter-
connectedness, such as Tom did, what would happen if two or more
hypnotized individuals tried to construct the same imaginary reality?
Intrigumgly, this question has been answered in an experiment con-
ducted by Charles Tart, a professor of psychology at the Davis campus
of the University of California, Tart found two graduate students, Anne
and Bill, who could go into deep trance and were also skilled hypnotists
in their own right. He had Anne hypnotize Bill and after he was
hypnotized, he had Bill hypnotize her in return. Tart’s reasoning was that
the already powerful rapport that exists between hypnotist and subject
would be strengthened by using this unusual procedure.

He was right. When they opened their eyes in this mutually hypno-
tized state everything looked gray. However, the grayness quickly gave
way to vivid colors and glowing lights, and in a few moments they found
themselves on a beach of unearthly beauty. The sand sparkled like
diamonds, the sea was filled with enormous frothing bubbles and
glistened like champagne, and the shoreline was dotted with translucent
crystalline rocks pulsing with internal light. Although Tart could not see
what Anne and Bill were seeing, from the way they were talking he
quickly realized they were experiencing the same hallucinated reality.

Of course, this was immediately obvious to Anne and Bill and they set
about to explore their newfound world, swimming in the ocean and
studying the glowing crystalline rocks. Unfortunately for Tart they also
stopped talking, or at least they stopped talking from Tart’s perspective.
When he questioned them about their silence they told him that in their
shared dreamworld they were talking, a phenomenon



Tart feels involved some kind of paranormal communication between
the two.

In session after session Anne and Bill continued to construct various
realities, and all were as real, available to the five senses, and
dimen-sionalty realized, as anything they experienced in their normal
waking state. In fact, Tart resolved that the worlds Anne and Bill visited
we’re actually more real than the pale, lunar version of reality with
which most of us must be content. As he states, after “they had been
talking about their experiences to each other for some time, and found
they had been discussing details of the experiences they had shared for
which there were no verbal stimuli on the tapes, they felt they must have
actually been ‘in’ the nonworldly locales they had experienced.” 48

Anne and Bill’s ocean world is the perfect example of a holographic
reality — a three-dimensional construct created out of
interconnected-ness, sustained by the flow of consciousness, and
ultimately as plastic as the thought processes that engendered it. This
plasticity was evident in several of its features. Although it was
three-dimensional, its space was more flexible than the space of
everyday reality and sometimes took on an elasticity Anne and Bill had
no words to describe. Even stranger, although they were clearly highly
skilled at sculpting a shared world outside themselves, they frequently
forgot to sculpt their own bodies, and existed more often than not as
floating faces or heads. As Anne reports, on one occasion when Bill told
her to give him her hand, “I had to kind of conjure up a hand.'” 9

How did this experiment in mutual hypnosis end? Sadly, the idea that
these spectacular visions were somehow real, perhaps even more real
than everyday reality, so frightened both Anne and Bill that they
became increasingly nervous about what they were doing. They even-
tually stopped their explorations, and one of them, Bill, even gave up
hypnosis entirely.

The extrasensory interconnectedness that allowed Anne and Bill to
construct their shared reality might almost be viewed as a kind of field
effect between them, a “reality -field” if you will. One wonders what
would have happened if the hypnotist at my father’s house had put all of
us into a trance? In light of the evidence above, there is every reason to
believe that if our rapport were deep enough, Laura would have become
invisible to us all. We would have collectively constructed a reality -field
of a watch, read its inscription, and been completely convinced that
what we were perceiving was real.

If consciousness plays a role in the creation of subatomic particles,

A Pocketful of Miracles


is it possible that our observations of the subatomic world are also
reality -fie Ids of a kind? If Jahn can perceive a suit of armor through the
senses of a friend in Paris, is it any more farfetched to believe that
physicists all around the world are unconsciously interconnecting with
one another and using a form of mutual hypnosis similar to that used by
Tart’s subjects to create the consensus characteristics they observe in an
electron? This possibility may be supported by another unusual feature
of hypnosis. Unlike other altered states of consciousness, hypnosis is
not associated with any unusual EEG patterns. Physiologically speaking,
the mental state hypnosis most closely resembles is our normal waking
consciousness. Does this mean that normal waking consciousness is
itself a kind of hypnosis, and we are all constantly tapping into

Nobe list Josephs on has suggested that something like this may be
going on. Like Globus, he takes Castaneda’s work seriously and has
attempted to relate it to quantum physics. He proposes that objective
reality is produced out of the collective memories of the human race
while anomalous events, such as those experienced by Castaneda, are
the manifestation of the individual will. 50

Human consciousness may not be the only thing that participates in
the creation of reality -fields. Remote viewing experiments have shown
that people can accurately describe distant locations even when there
are no human observers present at the locations. 1 ‘ Similarly, subjects
can identify the contents of a sealed box randomly selected from a
group of sealed boxes and whose contents are therefore completely
unknown. 52 This means that we can do more than just tap into the senses
of other people. We can also tap into reality itself to gain information.
As bizarre as this sounds, it is not so strange when one remembers that
in a holographic universe, consciousness pervades all matter, and
“meaning” has an active presence in both the mental and physical

Bohm believes the ubiquitousness of meaning offers a possible ex-
planation for both telepathy and remote viewing. He thinks both may
actually be just different forms of psychokinesis. Just as PK is a
resonance of meaning conveyed from a mind to an object, telepathy can
be viewed as a resonance of meaning conveyed from a mind to a mind,
says Bohm. In like manner, remote viewing can be looked at as a
resonance of meaning conveyed from an object to a mind. “When
harmony or resonance of ‘meanings’ is established, the action works
both ways, so that the ‘meanings’ of the distant system could act in



the viewer to produce a kind of inverse psychokinesis that would, in
effect, transmit an image of that system to him,” he states. Al

Jahn and Dunne have a similar view. Although they believe reality is
established only in the interaction of a consciousness with its envi-
ronment, they are very liberal in how they define consciousness. As they
see it, anything capable of generating, receiving, or utilizing information
can qualify. Thus, animals, viruses, DNA, machines {artificially
intelligent and otherwise), and so-called nonliving objects may all have
the prerequisite properties to take part in the creation of reality. 1 ” 1

If such assertions are true, and we can obtain information not only
from the minds of other human beings but from the living hologram of
reality itself, psychometry — the ability to obtain information about an
object’s history simply by touching it — would also be explained. Rather
than being inanimate, such an object would be suffused with its own
kind of consciousness. Instead of being a “thing” that exists separately
from the universe, it would be part of the mterconnected-ness of all
things — connected to the thoughts of every person who ever came in
contact with it, connected to the consciousness that pervades every
animal and object that was ever associated with its existence, connected
via the implicate to its own past, and connected to the mind of the
psychometrist holding it.

You Can Get Something for Nothing

Do physicists play a role in the creation of subatomic particles? At
present the puzzle remains unresolved, but our ability to interconnect
with one another and conjure up realities that are as real as our normal
waking reality is not the only clue that this may be the case. Indeed, the
evidence of the miraculous indicates that we have scarcely even begun
to fathom our talents in this area. Consider the following miraculous
healing reported by Gardner. In 1982 an English physician named Ruth
Coggin, working in Pakistan, was visited by a thirty-five -year-old
Pakistani woman named Kamro. Kamro was eight months pregnant and
for the better part of her pregnancy had suffered from bleeding and
intermittent abdominal pain. Coggin recommended that she go into the
hospital immediately, but Kamro refused.

A Pocketful of Miracles


Nonetheless, two days later her bleeding became so severe that she was
admitted on an emergency basis.

Coggin’s examination revealed that Kamro’s blood loss had been
“very heavy,” and her feet and abdomen were pathologically swollen.
The next day Kamro had “another heavy bleed,” forcing Coggin to
perform a cesarean section. As soon as Coggin opened the uterus even
more copious amounts of dark blood flooded out and continued to flow
so heavily it became clear that Kamro had virtually no clotting ability.
By the time Coggin delivered Kamro’s healthy baby daughter, “deep
pools of unclotted blood” filled her bed and continued to flow from her
incision. Coggin managed to obtain two pints of blood to transfuse the
gravely anemic woman, but it was not nearly enough to replace the
staggering loss. Having no other options, Coggin resorted to prayer.

She writes, “We prayed with the patient after explaining to her about
Jesus in whose name we had prayed for her before the operation, and
who was a great healer, I also told her that we were not going to worry. I
had seen Jesus heal this condition before and was sure He was going to
heal her. ” Im

Then they waited.

For the next several hours Kamro continued to bleed, but instead of
getting worse, her general condition stabilized. That evening Coggin
prayed with Kamro again, and although her “brisk bleeding” continued
unabated, she seemed unaffected by the loss. Forty-eight hours after the
operation her blood finally began to clot and her recovery started in full.
Ten days later she went home with her baby.

Although Coggin had no way of measuring Kamro’s actual blood loss,
she had no doubts that the young mother had lost more than her total
blood volume during the surgery and the profuse bleeding that ensued.
After Gardner examined the documentation of the case, he agreed. The
trouble with this conclusion is that human beings cannot produce new
blood fast enough to cover such catastrophic losses; if they could, many
fewer people would bleed to death. This leaves one with the unsettling
conclusion that Kamro’s new blood must have materialized out of thin

The ability to create an infinitesimal particle or two pales in compari-
son to the materialization of the ten to twelve pints of blood necessary to
replenish the average human body. And blood is not the only thing we
can create out of thin air. In June of 1974, while traveling in Timor
Timur, a small island in easternmost Indonesia, Watson encountered



an equally confounding example of materialization. Although his orig-
inal intention had been to visit a famous matan do’ ok, a type of
Indonesian wonder-worker who was said to be able to make it rain on
demand, he was diverted by accounts of an unusually active buan, an
evil spirit, wreaking havoc in a house in a nearby village.

The family living in the house consisted of a married couple, their two
small boys, and the husband’s unmarried younger half-sister. The couple
and their children were typically Indonesian in appearance, with dark
complexions and curly hair, but the half-sister, whose name was Alin,
was physically very different and had a much lighter complexion and
features that were almost Chinese, which accounted for her inability to
obtain a husband. She was also treated with indifference by the family,
and it was immediately plain to Watson that she was the source of the
psychic disturbance.

That evening during dinner in the family’s grass-roofed home, Watson
witnessed several startling phenomena. First, without warning, the
couple’s eight-year-old boy screamed and dropped his cup on the table
as the back of his hand began to bleed inexplicably. Watson, who was
sitting next to the boy, examined his hand and saw that there was a
semicircle of fresh punctures on it, like a human bite, but with a
diameter larger than the boy’s. Alin, always the odd person out, was
busy at the fire opposite the boy when this occurred.

As Watson was examining the wounds, the lamp flame turned blue
and abruptly flared up, and in the suddenly brighter light a shower of salt
began to pour down over the food until it was completely covered and
inedible. “It wasn’t a sudden deluge, but a slow and deliberate action
which lasted long enough for me to look up and see that it seemed to
begin in midair, just about eye level, perhaps four feet over the table,”
says Watson.

Watson immediately leapt up from the table, but the show wasn’t over.
Suddenly a series of loud rapping sounds issued from the table, and it
began to wobble. The family also jumped up and all watched as the table
bucked “like the lid on a box containing some wild animal,” and finally
flipped over on its side. Watson first reacted by running out of the house
with the rest of the family, but when he recovered his senses he returned
and searched the room for evidence of any trickery that might account
for the occurrence. He found none. M

The events that took place in the little Indonesian hut are classic
examples of a poltergeist haunting, a type of haunting typified by
mysterious sounds and psychokinetic activity rather than the appear-

A Pocketful of Miracles


ances of ghosts or apparitions. Because poltergeists tend to center more
around people, in this case Alin, rather than places, many
para-psychologists believe they are actually manifestations of the
unconscious psychokinetic ability of the person around whom they are
most active. Even materialization has a long and illustrious history in
the annals of poltergeist research. For instance, in his classic work on
the subject, Can We Explain the Poltergeist, A. R. G. Owen, a fellow
and lecturer in Mathematics at Trinity College, Cambridge, gives
numerous examples of objects materializing out of thin air in poltergeist
cases dating from A.D. 530 to modern times. ST Small stones and not salt,
however, are the objects that materialize most often.

In the Introduction I mentioned that I had experienced firsthand many
of the paranormal phenomena that would be discussed in this book and
would relate a few of my own experiences. It is thus time to come clean
and confess that I know how Watson must have felt after witnessing the
sudden onslaught of psychokinetic activity in the little Indonesian hut
because when I was a child, the house in which my family had recently
moved (a new house that my parents themselves had built) became the
site of an active poltergeist haunting. Since our poltergeist left my
family’s home and followed me when I went away to college, and since
its activity very definitely seemed connected to my moods — its antics
becoming more malicious when I was angry or my spirits were low, and
more impish and whimsical when my mood was brighter — I have
always accepted the idea that poltergeists are manifestations of the
unconscious psychokinetic ability of the person around whom they are
most active.

This connection to my emotions displayed itself frequently. If I was in
a good mood, I might wake up to find all of my socks draped over the
house plants. If I was in a darker frame of mind, the poltergeist might
manifest by hurling a small object across the room or occasionally even
by breaking something. Over the years both I and various family
members and friends witnessed a wide range of psychokinetic activity.
My mother tells me that even when I was a toddler pots and pans had
already begun to jump inexplicably from the middle of the kitchen table
to the floor. I have written about some of these experiences in my book
Beyond the Quantum.

I do not make these disclosures lightly. I am aware of how alien such
occurrences are to most people’s experience and fully understand the
skepticism with which they will be greeted in some quarters. Nonethe-
less, I am compelled to talk about them because I think it is vitally



important that we try to understand such phenomena and not just sweep
them under the carpet.

Still it is with some trepidation that I admit that my own poltergeist
also occasionally materialized objects. The materializations started
when I was six years old, and inexplicable showers of gravel rained
down on our roof at night. Later it took to pelting me inside my home
with small polished stones and pieces of broken glass with edges worn
like the shards of drift glass one finds on the beach. On rarer occasions it
materialized other objects including coins, a necklace, and several odder
trifles. Unfortunately, I usually did not see the actual materializations,
but only witnessed their aftermath, such as when a pile of spaghetti
noodles (sans sauce) fell on my chest one day while I was taking a nap in
my New York apartment. Given that I was alone in a room with no open
windows or doors, there was no one else in my apartment, and there was
no sign that anyone had either cooked spaghetti or broken in to throw
spaghetti at me, I can only assume that, for reasons unknown, the
handful of cold spaghetti noodles that dropped out of midair and onto
my chest materialized out of nowhere.

On a few occasions, however, I did see objects actually materialize.
For example, in 1976 I was working in my study when I happened to
look up and see a small brown object appear suddenly in midair just a
few inches below the ceiling. As soon as it popped into existence it
zoomed down at a sharp angle and landed at my feet. When I picked it
up I saw that it was a piece of brown drift glass that originally might
have been used in making beer bottles. It was not quite as spectacular as
a shower of salt lasting several seconds, but it taught me that such things
were possible.

Perhaps the most famous modern-day materializations are those
produced by Sathya Sai Baba, a sixty-four-year-old Indian holy man
living in a distant corner of the state of Andhra Pradesh in southern India.
According to numerous eyewitnesses, Sai Baba is able to produce much
more than salt and a few stones. He plucks lockets, rings, and jewelry
out of the air and passes them out as gifts. He also materializes an
endless supply of Indian delicacies and sweets, and out of his hands
pour volumes of mbuti, or sacred ash. These events have been witnessed
by literally thousands of individuals, including both scientists and
magicians, and no one has ever detected any hint of trickery. One
witness is psychologist Erlendur Haraldsson of the University of

Haraldsson has spent over ten years studying Sai Baba and has

A Pocketful of Miracles


published his findings in a recent book entitled Modern Miracles: An
Investigative Report on Psychic Phenomena Associated with Sathya Sai
Baba. Although Haraldsson admits that he cannot prove conclusively
that Sai Baba’s productions are not the result of deception and sleight of
hand, he offers a large amount of evidence that strongly suggests
something supernormal is taking place.

For starters, Sai Baba can materialize specific objects on request.
Once when Haraldsson was having a conversation with him about
spiritual and ethical issues, Sai Baba said that daiiy life and spiritual life
should “grow together like a double rudraksha.” When Haraldsson
asked what a double rudraksha was, neither Sai Baba nor the interpreter
knew the English equivalent of the term. Sai Baba tried to continue with
the diseussion, but Haraldsson remained insistent. “Then suddenly, with
a sign of impatience, Sai Baba closed his list and waved his hand for a
second or two. As he opened it, he turned to me and said: ‘This is it.’ In
his palm was an acorn-like object. This was two rudrakshas grown
together like a twin orange or a twin apple,” says Haraldsson.

When Haraldsson indicated that he wanted to keep the double-seed as
a memento, Sai Baba agreed, but first asked to see it again. “He enclosed
the rudraksha in both his hands, blew on it, and opened his hands toward
me. The double rudraksha was now covered, on the top and bottom, by
two golden shields held together by a short golden chain. On the top was
a golden cross with a small ruby affixed to it, and a tiny opening so that
it could hang on a chain around the neck.” 58 Haraldsson later discovered
that double rudrakshas were extremely rare botanical anomalies. Several
Indian botanists he consulted said they had never even seen one, and
when he finally found a small, malformed specimen in a shop in Madras,
the shopkeeper wanted the Indian equivalent of almost three hundred
dollars for it. A London goldsmith confirmed that the gold in the
ornamentation had a purity of at least twenty -two carats.

Such gifts are not rare. Sai Baba frequently hands out costly rings,
jewels, and objects made of gold to the throngs who visit him daily and
who venerate him as a saint. He also materializes vast quantities of food,
and when the various delicacies he produces fall from his hands they are
sizzling hot, so hot that people sometimes cannot even hold them. He
can make sweet syrups and fragrant oils pour from his hands (and even
his feet), and when he is finished there is no trace of the sticky substance
on his skin. He can produce exotic objects such



as grains of rice with tiny, perfectly carved pictures of Krishna on them,
out-of-season fruits (a near impossibility in an area of the country that
has no electricity or refrigeration), and anomalous fruits, such as apples
that, when peeled, turn out to be an apple on one side and another fruit
on the other.

Equally astonishing are his productions of sacred ash. Every time he
walks among the crowds that visit him, prodigious amounts of it pour
from his hands. He scatters it everywhere, into oifered containers and
outstretched hands, over heads, and in long serpentine trails on the
ground. In a single transit of the grounds around his ashram he can
produce enough of it to fill several drums. On one of his visits,
Haraldsson, along with Dr. Karlis Osis, the director of research for the
American Society for Psychical Research, actually saw some of the ash
in the process of materializing. As Haraldsson reports, “His palm was
open and turned downwards, and he waved his hand in a few quick,
small circles. As he did, a grey substance appeared in the air just below
his palm. Dr. Osis, who sat slightly closer, observed that this material
first appeared entirely in the form of granules (that crumbled into ash
when touched) and might have disintegrated earlier if Sai Baba had
produced them by a sleight of hand that was undetectable to us.” 59

Haraldsson notes that Sai Baba’s manifestations are not the result of
mass hypnosis because he freely allows his open-air demonstrations to
be filmed, and everything he does still shows up in the film. Similarly,
the production of specific objects, the rarity of some of the objects, the
hotness of the food, and the sheer volume of the materializations seem
to ruie against deception as a possibility. Haraldsson also points out that
no one has ever come forth with any credible evidence that Sai Baba is
faking his abilities, in addition, Sai Baba has been producing a
continuous flow of objects for half a century, since he was fourteen, a
fact that is further testament to both the volume of the materializations
and the significance of his untarnished reputation. Is Sai Baba
producing objects out of nothingness? At present the jury is still out, but
Haraldsson makes it clear what his position is. He believes Sai Baba’s
demonstrations remind us of the “enormous potentials that may lie
dormant somewhere within all human beings.” 60

Accounts of individuals who can materialize are not unknown in
India. In his book Autobiography of a Yogi, Paramahansa Yoga-nanda
(1893-1952), the first eminent holy man of India to set up permanent
residence in the West, describes his meetings with several Hindu

A Pocketful of Miracles


ascetics who could materialize out-of-season fruits, gold plates, and
other objects. Interestingly, Yogananda cautioned that such powers, or
siddis, are not always evidence that the person possessing them is
spiritually evolved. “The world [is] nothing but an objectivized dream,”
says Yogananda, and “whatever your powerful mind believes very
intensely instantly comes to pass.” 6 ‘ Have such individuals discovered a
way to tap just a little of the enormous sea of cosmic energy that Bohm
says fills every cubic centimeter of empty space?

A remarkable series of materializations that has received even greater
confirmation than that bestowed by Haraldsson on Sai Baba was
produced by Therese Neumann. In addition to her stigmata, Neumann
also displayed media, the supernormal ability to live without food. Her
inedia began in 1923 when she “transferred” the throat disease of a
young priest to her own body and subsisted solely on liquids for several
years. Then, in 1927, she gave up both food and water entirely.

When the local bishop in Regensburg first learned of Neumann’s fast,
he sent a commission into her home to investigate. From July 14, 1927,
to July 29, 1927, and under the supervision of a medical doctor named
Seidl, four Franciscan nursing sisters scrutinized her every move. They
watched her day and night, and the water she used for washing and
rinsing her mouth was carefully measured and weighed. The sisters
discovered several unusual things about Neumann. She never went to
the bathroom (even after a period of six weeks she only had one bowel
movement, and the excrement, examined by a Dr. Reismanns, contained
only a small amount of mucus and bile, but no traces of food). She also
showed no signs of dehydration, even though the average human expels
about four hundred grams (fourteen ounces) of water daily in the air he
or she exhales, and a like amount through the pores. And her weight
remained constant; although she lost nearly nine pounds (in blood)
during the weekly opening of her stigmata, her weight returned to
normal within a day or two later.

At the end of the inquiry Dr. Seidl and the sisters were completely
convinced that Neumann had not eaten or drunk a thing for the entire
fourteen days. The test seems conclusive, for while the human body can
survive two weeks without food, it can rarely survive half that time
without water. Yet this was nothing for Neumann; she did not eat or
drink a thing for the next thirty -five years. So it appears that she was not
only materializing the enormous amount of blood necessary to
perpetuate her stigmata, but also regularly materializing the



water and nutrients she needed to stay alive and in good health. Inedia is
not unique to Neumann. In The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism,
Thurston gives several examples of stigmatists who went for years
without eating or drinking.

Materialization may be more common than we realize. Compelling
accounts of bleeding statues, paintings, icons, and even rocks that have
historical or religious significance abound in the literature on the
miraculous. There are also dozens of stories of Madonnas and other
icons shedding tears. A virtual epidemic of “weeping Madonnas” swept
Italy in 1953. 6 – And in India, followers of Sai Baba showed Haraldsson
pictures of the ascetic that were miraculously exuding sacred ash.

Changing the Whole Picture

In a way materialization challenges our conventional ideas about reality
most of all, for although we can, with effort, hammer things such as PK
into our current world view, the creation of an object out of thin air rocks
the very foundation of that world view. Still, it is not all the mind can do.
So far we have looked at miracles that involve only “parts” of
reality — examples of people psychokine tic ally moving parts around, of
people altering parts (the laws of physics) to make themselves immune
to fire, and of people materializing parts {blood, salt, stones, jewelry,
ash, nutrients, and tears). But if reality is really an unbroken whole, why
do miracles seem to involve only parts?

If miracles are examples of the mind’s own latent abilities, the answer,
of course, is because we ourselves are so deeply programmed to see the
world in terms of parts. This implies that if we were not so inculcated in
thinking in terms of parts, if we viewed the world differently, miracles
would also be different. Bather than finding so many examples of
miracles in which the parts of reality had been transformed, we would
find more instances in which the whole of reality had been transformed.
In fact a few such examples exist, but they are rare and offer an even
graver challenge to our conventional ideas about reality than
materializations do.

Watson provides one. While he was in Indonesia he also encountered
another young woman with power. The woman’s name was Tia, but
unlike Alin’s power, hers did not seem to be an expression of an
unconscious psychic gift. Instead it was consciously controlled and

A Pocketful of Miracles


stemmed from Tia’s natural connection to forces that lie dormant in most
of us. Tia was, in short, a shaman in the making. Watson witnessed
many examples of her gifts. He saw her perform miraculous healings,
and once, when she was engaged in a power struggle with the local
Moslem religious leader, he saw her use the power of her mind to set the
minaret of the local mosque on fire.

But he witnessed one of Tia’s most awesome displays when he
accidentally stumbled upon her talking with a little girl in a shady grove
of kenari trees. Even at a distance, Watson could tell from Tia’s gestures
that she was trying to communicate something important to the child.
Although he could not hear their conversation, he could tell from her air
of frustration that she was not succeeding. Finally, she appeared to get an
idea and started an eerie dance.

Entranced, Watson continued to watch as she gestured toward the
trees, and although she scarcely seemed to move, there was something
hypnotic about her subtle gesticulations. Then she did something that
both shocked and dismayed Watson. She caused the entire grove of trees
suddenly to blink out of existence. As Waison states, “One moment Tia
danced in a grove of shady kenari; the next she was standing alone in the
hard, bright light of the sun.” 63

A few seconds later she caused the grove to reappear, and from the
way the little girl leapt to her feet and rushed around touching the trees,
Watson was certain that she had shared the experience also. But Tia was
not finished. She caused the grove to blink on and off several times as
both she and the little girl linked hands, dancing and giggling at the
wonder of it all. Watson simply walked away, his head reeling.

In 1975 when I was a senior at Michigan State University I had a
similarly profound and reality-challenging experience. I was having
dinner with one of my professors at a local restaurant, and we were
discussing the philosophical implications of Carlos Castaneda’s experi-
ences. In particular our conversation centered around an incident
Cas-taneda relates in Journey to Ixtlan. Don Juan and Castaneda are in
the desert at night searching for a spirit when they come upon a creature
that looks like a calf but has the ears of a wolf and the beak of a bird. It is
curled up and screaming as if in the throes of an agonizing death.

At first Castaneda is terrified, but after telling himself that what he is
seeing can’t possibly be real, his vision changes and he sees that the
dying spirit is actually a fallen tree branch trembling in the wind.
Castaneda proudly points out the thing’s true identity, but as usual the



oid Yaqui shaman rebukes him. He tells Castaneda that the branch was
a dying spirit while it was alive with power, but that it had transformed
into a tree branch when Castaneda doubted its existence. However, he
stresses that both realities were equally real.

In my conversation with my professor, I admitted that I was intrigued
by Don Juan’s assertion that two mutually exclusive realities could each
be real and felt that the notion could explain many paranormal events.
Moments after discussing this incident we left the restaurant and,
because it was a clear summer night, we decided to stroll. As we
continued to converse I became aware of a small group of people
walking ahead of us. They were speaking an unrecognizable foreign
language, and from their boisterous behavior it appeared that they were
drunk. In addition, one of the women was carrying a green umbrella,
which was strange because the sky was totally cloudless and there had
been no forecast of rain.

Not wanting to collide with the group, we dropped back a little, and as
we did, the woman suddenly began swinging the umbrella in a wild and
erratic manner. She traced out huge arcs in the air, and several times as
she spun around, the tip of the umbrella nearly grazed us. We slowed
our pace even more, but it became increasingly apparent that her
performance was designed to attract our attention. Finally, after she had
our gaze firmly fixed on what she was doing, she held the umbrella with
both hands over her head and then threw it dramatically at our feet.

We both stared at it dumbly, wondering why she had done such a
thing, when suddenly something remarkable began to happen. The
umbrella did something that I can only describe as “flickering” like a
lantern flame about to go out. It emitted an odd, crackling sound like the
sound of cellophane being crumpled, and in a dazzling array of
sparkling, multicolored light, its ends curled up, its color changed, and it
reshaped itself into a gnarled, brown-gray stick. I was so stunned I didn’t
say anything for several seconds. My professor spoke first and said in a
quiet, shocked voice that she had thought the object had been an
umbrella. I asked her if she had seen something extraordinary happen
and she nodded. We both wrote down what we thought had transpired
and our accounts matched exactly. The only vague difference in our
descriptions was that my professor said the umbrella had “sizzled” when
it transformed into a stick, a sound not too terribly dissimilar from the
crackly sound of cellophane being crumpled.

A Pocketful of Miracles


What Does It All Mean?

This incident raises many questions for which I have no answers. I do
not know who the people were who threw the umbrella at our feet, or if
they were even aware of the magical transformation that took place as
they strolled away, although the woman’s bizarre and seemingly
purposeful performance suggests that they were not completely un-
witting. Both my professor and I were so transfixed by the magical
transformation of the umbrella that by the time we had the presence of
mind to ask them, they were long gone. I do not know why the event
happened, save that it seems obvious it was connected in some way to
our talk about Castaneda encountering a similar occurrence.

I do not even know why I have had the privilege of experiencing so
many paranormal occurrences, save that it appears to be related to the
fact that I was born with a great deal of native psychic ability. As an
adolescent I started having vivid and detailed dreams about events that
would later happen. I often knew things about people I had no right
knowing. When I was seventeen I spontaneously developed the ability
to see an energy field, or “aura,” around living things, and to this day
can often determine things about a person’s health by the pattern and
colors of the mist of light that I see surrounding them. Above and
beyond that, all I can say is that we are all gifted with different aptitudes
and qualities. Some of us are natural artists. Some dancers. I seem to
have been born with the chemistry necessary to trigger shifts in reality,
to catalyze somehow the forces required to precipitate paranormal
events. 1 am grateful for this capacity because it has taught me a great
deal about the universe, but I do not know why I have it.

What I do know is that the “umbrella incident,” as I have come to call
it, entailed a radical alteration in the world. In this chapter we have
looked at miracles that have involved increasingly greater shifts in
reality. PK is easier for us to fathom than the ability to pluck an object
out of the air, and the materialization of an obj ect is easier for most of us
to accept than the appearance and disappearance of an entire grove of
trees, or the paranormal appearance of a group of people capable of
transmogrifying matter from one form into another. More and more
these incidents suggest that reality is, in a very real sense, a hologram, a

The question becomes, Is it a hologram that is relatively stable for



long periods of time and subject to only minimal alterations by con-
sciousness, as Bohm suggests? Or is it a hologram that only seems stable,
but under special circumstances can be changed and reshaped in
virtually limitless ways, as the evidence of the miraculous suggests?
Some researchers who have embraced the holographic idea believe the
latter is the ease. For example, Grof not only takes materialisation and
other extreme paranormal phenomena seriously, but feels that reality is
indeed cloud-built and pliant to the subtle authority of consciousness.
“The world is not necessarily as solid as we perceive it,” he says M

Physicist William Tiller, head of the Department of Materials Science
at Stanford University and another supporter of the holographic idea,
agrees. Tiller thinks reality is similar to the “holodeck” on the television
show Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the series, the holodeck is an
environment in which occupants can call up a holographic simulation of
literally any reality they desire, a lush forest, a bustling city. They can
also change each simulation in any way they want, such as cause a lamp
to materialize or make an unwanted table disappear. Tiller thinks the
universe is also a kind of holodeck created by the “integration” of all
living things. “We’ve created it as a vehicle of experience, and we’ve
created the laws that govern it,” he asserts. “And when we get to the
frontiers of our understanding, we can in fact shift the laws so that we’re
also creating the physics as we go along.” 65

If Tiller is right and the universe is an enormous holodeck, the ability
to materialize a gold ring or cause a grove of kenari trees to flick on and
off is no longer so strange. Even the umbrella incident can be viewed as a
temporary aberration in the holographic simulation we call ordinary
reality. Although my professor and I were unaware that we possessed
such an ability, it may be that the emotional fervor of our discussion
about Castaneda caused our unconscious minds to change the hologram
of reality to better reflect what we were believing at the moment. Given
Ullman’s assertion that our psyche is constantly trying to teach us things
we are unaware of in our waking state, our unconscious may even be
programmed to produce occasionally such miracles in order to offer us
glimpses of reality’s true nature, to show us that the world we create for
ourselves is ultimately as creatively infinite as the reality of our dreams.

Saying that reality is created by the integration of all living things is
really no different from saying that the universe is comprised of

A Pocketful of Miracles


reality fields. If this is true, it explains why the reality of some subatomic
particles, such as electrons, seems relatively fixed, while the reality of
others, such as anomalons, appears to be more plastic. It may be that the
reality fields we now perceive as electrons became part of the cosmic
hologram long ago, perhaps long before human beings were even part of
the integration of all things. Hence, electrons may be so deeply ingrained
in the hologram they are no longer as susceptible to the influence of
human consciousness as other newer reality fields. Similarly, anomalons
may vary from lab to lab because they are more recent reality fields and
are still inchoate, still floundering around in search of an identity, as it
were. In a sense, they are like the champagne beach Tart’s subjects
perceived while it was still in its gray state and had not yet fully
coalesced out of the implicate.

This may also explain why aspirin helps prevent heart attacks in
Americans, but not in the British. It, too, may be a relatively recent
reality field and one that is still in the making. There is even evidence
that the ability to materialize blood is a comparatively recent reality field.
Rogo notes that accounts of blood miracles began with the
fourteenth-century miracle of San Gennaro. The fact that no blood
miracles are known to predate San Gennaro seems to indicate that the
ability flickered into existence at that time. Once it was thus established
it would be easier for others to tap into the reality field of its possibility,
which may explain why there have been numerous blood miracles since
San Gennaro, but none before.

Indeed, if the universe is a holodeck, all things that appear stable and
eternal, from the laws of physics to the substance of galaxies, would
have to be viewed as reality fields, will-o’-the-wisps no more or less real
than the props in a giant, mutually shared dream. All permanence would
have to be looked at as illusory, and only consciousness would be eternal,
the consciousness of the living universe.

Of course, there is one other possibility. It may be that only anomalous
events, such as the umbrella incident, are reality fields, and the world at
large is still every bit as stable and unaffected by consciousness as we
have been taught to believe. The problem with this assumption is that it
can never be proved. The only litmus test we have of determining
whether something is real, say a purple elephant that has just strolled into
our living room, is to find out if other people can see it as well. But once
we admit that two or more people can create a reality — whether it is a
transforming umbrella or a vanishing grove of kenari trees — we no
longer have any way of proving that every-



thing else in the world is not created by the mind. It all boils down to a
matter of personal philosophy.

And personal philosophies vary. Jahn prefers to think that only the
reality created by the interactions of consciousness are real. “The
question of whether there’s an ‘out there’ out there is abstract. If we have
no way of verifying the abstraction, there is no profit in attempting to
model it,” he says. 66 Globus, who willingly admits that reality is a
construct of consciousness, prefers to think that there is a world beyond
the bubble of our perceptions. “I’m interested in nice theories,” he says,
“and a nice theory postulates existence.” 1 ‘” 7 However, he admits that
this is merely his bias, and there is no empirical way to prove such an

As for me, as a result of my own experiences I agree with Don Juan
when he states, “We are perceivers. We are an awareness; we are not
objects; we have no solidity. We are boundless. The world of objects
and solidity is a way of making our passage on earth convenient. It is
only a description that was created to help us. We, or rather our reason,
forget that the description is only a description and thus we entrap the
totality of ourselves in a vicious circle from which we rarely emerge in
our lifetime.” 6 * 1

Put another way, there is no reality above and beyond that created by
the integration of all consciousnesses, and the holographic universe can
potentially be sculpted in virtually limitless ways by the mind.

If this is true, the laws of physics and the substance of galaxies are not
the only things that are reality fields. Even our bodies, the vehicles of
our consciousness in this life, would have to be looked upon as no more
or less real than anomalous and champagne beaches. Or as Keith Floyd,
a psychologist at Virginia Intermont College and another supporter of
the holographic idea, states, “Contrary to what everyone knows is so, it
may not be the brain that produces consciousness, but rather
consciousness that creates the appearance of the brain — matter, space,
time and everything else we are pleased to interpret as the physical

ii 69


This is perhaps most disturbing of all, for we are so deeply convinced
that our bodies are solid and objectively real it is difficult for us even to
entertain the idea that we, too, may be no more than will-o’-the-wisps.
But there is compelling evidence that this is also the case. Another
phenomenon often associated with saints is bilocation, or the ability to
be in two places at once. According to Haraldsson, Sai Baba does
biolocation one better. Numerous witnesses have reported

A Pocketful of Miracles


watching him snap his fingers and vanish, instantly reappearing a
hundred or more yards away. Such incidents very much suggest that our
bodies are not objects, but holographic projections that can blink “off” in
one location and “on” in another with the same ease that an image might
vanish and reappear on a video screen.

An incident that further underscores the holographic and immaterial
nature of the body can be found in phenomena produced by an Icelandic
medium named Indridi Indridason. In 1 905 several of Iceland’s leading
scientists decided to investigate the paranormal and chose Indridason as
one of their subjects. At the time, Indridason was just a country bumpkin
with no previous experience with things psychic, but he quickly proved
to be a spectacularly talented medium. He could go into trance quickly
and produce dramatic displays of PK. But most bizarre of all, sometimes
while he was deep in trance, different parts of his body would
completely dematerialize. As the astonished scientists watched, an arm
or a hand would fade out of existence, only to re materialize before he
awakened. 70

Such events again offer us a tantalizing glimpse of the enormous
potentialities that may lie dormant in all of us. As we have seen, our
current scientific understanding of the universe is completely incapable
of explaining the various phenomena we have examined in this chapter
and therefore has no choice but to ignore them. However, if researchers
such as Grof and Tiller are correct and the mind is able to intercede in
the implicate order, the holographic plate that gives birth to the
hologram we call the universe, and thus create any reality or laws of
physics that it wants to, then not only are such things possible, but
virtually anything is possible.

If this is true, the apparent solidity of the world is only a small part of
what is available to our perception. Although most of us are indeed
entrapped in our current description of the universe, a few individuals
do have the ability to see beyond the world’s solidity. In the next chapter
we will take a look at some of these individuals and examine what they

Seeing Holographically

We human beings consider ourselves to be made up of “solid
matter.” Actually, the physical body is the end product, so to
speak, of the subtle information fields, which mold our physical
body as wed as all physical matter. These fields ore holograms
which change in time (and are) outside the reach of our normal
senses. This is what clairvoyants perceive as colorful egg-shaped
halos or auras surrounding our physical bodies.

— Hzhak Bentov

Stalking the Wild Pendulum

A number of years ago I was walking along with a friend when a street
sign caught my attention. It was simply a No Parking sign and seemed
no different from any of the other No Parking signs that dotted the city
streets. But for some reason it held me transfixed. I wasn’t even aware
that I was staring at it until my friend suddenly exclaimed, “That sign is
misspelled!” Her announcement snapped me out of my reverie, and as I
watched, the ;’ in the word Parking quickly changed into an e.

What happened was that my mind was so accustomed to seeing the
sign spelled correctly that my unconscious edited out what was there
and made me see what it expected to be there. My friend, as it turned out,
had also seen the sign spelled correctly at first, which was why she had
such a vocal reaction when she realized it was misspelled. We


Seeing Holographically


continued to walk on, but the incident bothered roe. For the first time I
realized that the eye/brain is not a faithful camera, but tinkers with the
world before it gives it to us.

Neurophysiologists have long been aware of this fact In his early
studies of vision, Pribram discovered that the visual information a
monkey receives via its optic nerves does not travel directly into its
visual cortex, but is first filtered through other areas of its brain. 1
Numerous studies have shown that the same is true of human vision.
Visual information entering our brains is edited and modified by our
temporal lobes before it is passed on to our visual cortices. Some studies
suggest that less than 50 percent of what we “see” is actually based on
information entering our eyes. The remaining 50 percent plus is pieced
together out of our expectations of what the world should look like {and
perhaps out of other sources such as reality fields). The eyes may be
visual organs, but it is the brain that sees.

This is why we don’t always notice when a close friend shaves off his
mustache, and why our house always looks strangely different when we
return to it after a vacation. In both instances we are so used to
responding to what we think is there, we don’t always see what really is

Even more dramatic evidence of the role the mind plays in creating
what we see is provided by the eye’s so-called blind spot. In the middle of
the retina, where the optic nerve connects to the eye, we have a blind
spot where there are no photoreceptors. This can be quickly
demonstrated with the illustration shown in figure 15.

Even when we look at the world around us we are totally unaware that
there are gaping holes in our vision. It doesn’t matter whether we are
gazing at a blank piece of paper or an ornate Persian carpet The brain
artfully fills in the gaps like a skilled tailor reweaving a hole in a piece of
fabric. What is all the more remarkable is that it reweaves the tapestry of
our visual reality so masterfully we aren’t even aware that it is doing so.

This leads to a disturbing question. If we are seeing less than half of
what is out there, what is out there that we are not seeing? What
misspelled street signs and blind spots are escaping our attention
completely? Our technological prowess provides us with a few answers.
For example, although spiderwebs look drab and white to us, we now
know that to the ultraviolet-sensitive eyes of the insects for whom they
were designed, they are actually brightly colored and hence alluring.
Our technology also tells us that fluorescent lamps do



FIGURE 15. To demonstrate how our brains construct what we
perceive as reality, hold the illustration at eye level, close your left eye, and stare at
the circle in the middle of the grid with your right eye. Slowly move the book back
and forth along the line of your vision until the star vanishes (about 10 to 15
inches). The star disappears because it is falling on your blind spot. Now close
your right eye and stare at the star. Move the book back and forth until the circle
in the middle of the grid vanishes. When it does, notice that although the circle
disappears, all the lines of the grid remain intact. This is because your brain is filling
in what it thinks should be there.

not continuously provide light, but are actually flickering on and off at a
rate that is just a little too fast for us to discern. Yet this unsettling
strobelike effect is quite visible to honeybees, who must be able to fly at
breakneck speed over a meadow and still see every flower that whizzes

But are there other important aspects of reality that we are not seeing,
aspects that are beyond even our technological grasp? According to the
holographic model, the answer is yes. Remember that in Pribram’s view,
reality at large is really a frequency domain, and our brain is a kind of
lens that converts these frequencies into the objective world of
appearances. Although Pribram began by studying the frequencies of
our normal sensory world, such as frequencies of sound and light, he
now uses the term frequency domain to refer to the interference patterns
that compose the implicate order.

Pribram believes there may be all kinds of things out there in the
frequency domain that we are not seeing, things our brains have learned
to edit out regularly of our visual reality. He thinks that when

Seeing Holographicaliy


mystics have transcendental experiences, what they are really doing is
catching glimpses of the frequency domain. “Mystical experience
makes sense when one can provide the mathematical formulas that take
one back and forth between the ordinary world, or ‘image-object’
domain, and the ‘frequency’ domain,” he states.”

The Human Energy Field

One mystical phenomenon that appears to involve the ability to see
reality’s frequency aspects is the aura, or human energy field. The notion
that there is a subtle field of energy around the human body, a halolike
envelope of light that exists just beyond normal human perception, can
be found in many ancient traditions. In India, sacred writings that date
back over five thousand years refer to this life energy as prana. In China,
since the third millennium B.C., it has been called ch ‘i and is believed to
be the energy that flows through the acupuncture meridian system.
Kabbalah, a Jewish mystical philosophy that arose in the sixth century
B.C., calls this vital principle nefish and teaches that an egg-shaped
bubble of iridescence surrounds every human body. In their book
Future Science, writer John White and parapsychologist Stanley
Krippner list 97 different cultures that refer to the aura with 97 different

Many cultures believe the aura of an extremely spiritual individual is
so bright it is visible even to normal human perception, which is why so
many traditions, including Christian, Chinese, Japanese, Tibetan, and
Egyptian, depict saints as having halos or other circular symbols around
their heads. In his book on miracles Thurston devotes an entire chapter
to accounts of luminous phenomena associated with Catholic saints, and
both Neumann and Sai Baba are reported to have occasionally had
visible auras of light around them. The great Sufi mystic Hazrat Inayat
Khan, who died in 1927, is said to have sometimes given off so much
light that people could actually read by it. 3

Under normal circumstances, however, the human energy field is
visible only to individuals who have a specially developed capacity to
see it. Sometimes people are bom with the ability. Sometimes it devel-
ops spontaneously at a certain point in a person’s life, as it did in my case,
and sometimes it develops as the result of some practice or discipline,
often of a spiritual nature. The first time I saw the distinc-



tive mist of light around my arm I thought it was smoke and jerked my
arm up to see if I had somehow caught my sleeve on fire. Of course, I
hadn’t and quickly discovered that the light surrounded my entire body
and formed a nimbus around everyone else’s as well.

According to some schools of thought the human energy field has a
number of distinct layers. I do not see layers in the field and have no
personal basis to judge if this is true or not. These layers are actually said
to be three-dimensional energy bodies that occupy the same space as the
physical body but are of increasingly larger size so that they only look
like layers, or strata, as they extend outward from the body.

Many psychics assert that there are seven main layers, or subtle bodies,
each progressively less dense than the one before it, and each
increasingly more difficult to see. Different schools of thought refer to
these energy bodies by different names. One common system of no-
menclature refers to the first four as the etheric body; the astral, or
emotional body; the mental body, and the causal, or intuitive body. It is
generally believed that the etheric body, the body that is closest in size to
the physical body, is a kind of energy blueprint and is involved in
guiding and shaping the growth of the physical body. As their names
suggest, the next three bodies are related to emotional, mental, and
intuitive processes. Virtually no one agrees on what to call the
remaining three bodies, although it is commonly agreed that they have
to do with the soul and higher spiritual functioning.

According to Indian yogic literature, and to many psychics as well, we
also have special energy centers in our body. These focal points of subtle
energy are connected to endocrine glands and major nerve centers in the
physical body, but also extend up and into the energy field. Because they
resemble spinning vortices of energy when they are looked at head-on,
yogic literature refers to them as chakras, from the Sanskrit word for
“wheel,” and this term is still used today.

The crown chakra, an important chakra that originates in the upper-
most tip of the brain and is associated with spiritual awakening, is often
described by clairvoyants as looking like a little cyclone whirling in the
energy field on top of the head, and it is the only chakra I see clearly.
(My own abilities appear to be too rudimentary to permit me to see the
other chakras.) It ranges from a few inches to a foot or more in height.
When people are in a joyous state, this whirlwind of energy grows taller
and brighter, and when they dance, it bobs and sways like a candle flame.
I’ve often wondered if this was what the apostle Luke

Seeing Hoiographkially


was seeing when he described the “flame of the Pentecost,” the tongues
of fire that appeared on the heads of the apostJes when the Holy Ghost
descended on them.

The human energy field is not always bluish white, but can possess
various colors. According to talented psychics, these colors, their
mud-diness or intensity, and their location in the aura are related to a
person’s mental state, emotional state, activity, health, and assorted
other factors. I can only see colors occasionally and sometimes can
interpret their meaning, but again my abilities in this area are not terribly

One person who does have advanced abilities is therapist and healer
Barbara Brennan. Brennan began her career as an atmospherics phys-
icist working for NASA at the Goddard Space Flight Center, and later
left to become a counselor. Her first inkling that she was psychic came
when she was a child and discovered she could walk blindfolded
through the woods and avoid the trees simply by sensing their energy
fields with her hands. Several years after she became a counselor, she
began seeing halos of colored light around people’s heads. After over-
coming her initial shock and skepticism, she set about to develop the
ability and eventually discovered she had an extraordinary natural talent
as a healer.

Brennan not only sees the chakras, layers, and other fine structures of
the human energy field with exceptional clarity, but can make
startiingly accurate medical diagnoses based on what she sees. After
looking at one woman’s energy field, Brennan told her there was
something abnormal about her uterus. The woman then told Brennan
that her doctor had discovered the same problem, and it had already
caused her to have one miscarriage. In fact, several physicians had
recommended a hysterectomy and that was why she was seeking
Brennan’s counsel. Brennan told her that if she took a month off and
took care of herself, her problem would clear up. Brennan’s advice
turned out to be correct, and a month later the woman’s physician
confirmed that her uterus had returned to normal. A year later the
woman gave birth to a healthy baby boy.” 1

In another case Brennan was able to see that a man had problems
performing sexually because he had broken his coccyx (tailbone) when
he was twelve. The still out-of -place coccyx was applying undue pres-
sure to his spinal column, and this in turn was causing his sexual
dysfunction. 5

There seems to be little Brennan cannot pick up by looking at the



human energy field. She says that in its early stages cancer looks
gray -blue in the aura, and as it progresses, it turns to black. Eventually,
white spots appear in the black, and if the white spots sparkle and begin
to look as if they are erupting from a volcano, it means the cancer has
metastasized. Drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine are also
detrimental to the brilliant, healthy colors of the aura and create what
Brennan calls “etheric mucus.” In one instance she was able to tell a
startled client which nostril he habitually used to snort cocaine because
the field over that side of his face was always gray with the sticky
etheric mucus.

Prescription drugs are not exempt, and often cause dark areas to form
in the energy field over the liver. Potent drugs such as chemotherapy
“clog” the entire field, and Brennan says she has even seen auric traces
of the supposedly harmless radiopaque dye used to diagnose spinal
injuries, a full ten years after it has been injected into a person’s spine.
According to Brennan, a person’s psychological condition is also
reflected in their energy field. An individual with psychopathic
tendencies has a top-heavy aura. The energy field of a masochistic
personality is coarse and dense and is more gray than blue. The field of a
person with a rigid approach to life is also coarse and grayish, but with
most of its energy concentrated on the outer edge of the aura, and so on.

Brennan says that illness can actually be caused by tears, blockages,
and imbalances in the aura, and by manipulating these dysfunctional
areas with her hands and her own energy field, she can greatly enhance
a person’s own healing processes. Her talents have not gone unnoticed.
Swiss psychiatrist and thanatologist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross says
Brennan is “probably one of the best spiritual healers in the Western
Hemisphere.” 6 Bernie Siege? is equally iaudatory: “Barbara Brennan’s
work is mind opening. Her concepts of the role disease plays and how
healing is achieved certainly fitin with my experience.” 7

As a physicist, Brennan is keenly interested in describing the human
energy field in scientific terms and believes Pribram’s assertion that
there is a frequency domain beyond our field of normal perception is the
best scientific model we have so far for understanding the phenomenon.
“From the point of view of the holographic universe, these events [the
aura and the healing forces required to manipulate its energies] emerge
from frequencies that transcend time and space; they don’t have to be
transmitted. They are potentially simultaneous and everywhere,” she

Seeing Holographieally


That the human energy field exists everywhere and is nonlocal until it
is plucked out of the frequency domain by human perception is
evidenced in Brennan’s discovery that she can read a person’s aura even
when the person is many miles distant. The longest-distance aura
reading she has done so far was during a telephone conversation
between New York City and Italy. She discusses this, as well as many
other aspects of her remarkable abilities, in her recent and fascinating
book Hands of Light.

The Energy Field of the Human Psyche

Another gifted psychic who can see the aura in great detail is Los
Angeles-based “human energy field consultant” Carol Dryer. Dryer
says she has been able to see auras for as long as she can remember, and
indeed it was quite some time before she realized other people couldn’t
see auras. Her ignorance in this regard frequently landed her in trouble
as a child when she would tell her parents intimate details about their
friends, things she had no apparent way of knowing.

Dryer makes her living as a psychic, and in the past decade and a half
has seen over five thousand clients. She is well known in the media
because her client list inclodes many celebrities such as Tina Turner,
Madonna, Rosanna Arquette, Judy Collins, Valerie Harper, and Linda
Gray. But even the star power of her client list does not begin to convey
the true extent of her talent. For instance, Dryer’s client list also includes
physicists, noted journalists, archaeologists, lawyers, and politicians,
and she has used her abilities to assist the police and frequently does
consultation work for psychologists, psychiatrists, and medical doctors.

Like Brennan, Dryer can give long-distance readings, but prefers to
be in the same room with the person. She can also see a person’s energy
field as well with her eyes closed as she can with her eyes open. In fact,
she generally keeps her eyes closed during a reading to help her
concentrate solely on the energy field. This does not mean that she sees
the aura only in her mind’s eye. “It’s always in front of me as if I’m
looking at a movie or a play,” says Dryer. “It’s as real as the room I’m
sitting in. Actually, it’s more real and more brightly colored.” 9

However, she does not see the precise stratified layers described by
other clairvoyants, and she often doesn’t even see the outline of the



human energy field. She says that in its early stages cancer looks
gray -blue in the aura, and as it progresses, it turns to black. Eventually,
white spots appear in the black, and if the white spots sparkle and begin
to look as if they are erupting from a volcano, it means the cancer has
metastasized. Drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine are also
detrimental to the brilliant, healthy colors of the aura and create what
Brennan calls “etheric mucus.” In one instance she was able to tell a
startled client which nostril he habitually used to snort cocaine because
the field over that side of his face was always gray with the sticky
etheric mucus.

Prescription drugs are not exempt, and often cause dark areas to form
in the energy field over the liver. Potent drugs such as chemotherapy
“clog” the entire field, and Brennan says she has even seen auric traces
of the supposedly harmless radiopaque dye used to diagnose spinal
injuries, a full ten years after it has been injected into a person’s spine.
According to Brennan, a person’s psychological condition is also
reflected in their energy field. An individual with psychopathic
tendencies has a top-heavy aura. The energy field of a masochistic
personality is coarse and dense and is more gray than blue. The field of a
person with a rigid approach to life is also coarse and grayish, but with
most of its energy concentrated on the outer edge of the aura, and so on.

Brennan says that illness can actually be caused by tears, blockages,
and imbalances in the aura, and by manipulating these dysfunctional
areas with her hands and her own energy field, she can greatly enhance
a person’s own healing processes. Her talents have not gone unnoticed.
Swiss psychiatrist and thanatologist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross says
Brennan is “probably one of the best spiritual healers in the Western
Hemisphere.” 6 Bernie Sieget is equally taudatory: “Barbara Brennan’s
work is mind opening. Her concepts of the role disease plays and how
healing is achieved certainly fit in with my experience.” 7

As a physicist, Brennan is keenly interested in describing the human
energy field in scientific terms and believes Pribram’s assertion that
there is a frequency domain beyond our field of normal perception is the
best scientific model we have so far for understanding the phenomenon.
“From the point of view of the holographic universe, these events [the
aura and the healing forces required to manipulate its energies] emerge
from frequencies that transcend time and space; they don’t have to be
transmitted. They are potentially simultaneous and everywhere,” she

Seeing Holographicaily


That the human energy field exists everywhere and is nonlocal until it
is plucked out of the frequency domain by human perception is
evidenced in Brennan’s discovery that she can read a person’s aura even
when the person is many miles distant. The longest-distance aura
reading she has done so far was during a telephone conversation
between New York City and Italy. She discusses this, as well as many
other aspects of her remarkable abilities, in her recent and fascinating
book Hands of Light

The Energy Field of the Human Psyche

Another gifted psychic who can see the aura in great detail is Los
Angeles-based “human energy field consultant” Carol Dryer. Dryer
says she has been able to see auras for as long as she can remember, and
indeed it was quite some time before she realized other people couldn’t
see auras. Her ignorance in this regard frequently landed her in trouble
as a child when she would tell her parents intimate details about their
friends, things she had no apparent way of knowing.

Dryer makes her living as a psychic, and in the past decade and a half
has seen over five thousand clients. She is well known in the media
because her client list includes many celebrities such as Tina Turner,
Madonna, Rosanna Arquette, Judy Collins, Valerie Harper, and Linda
Gray. But even the star power of her client list does not begin to convey
the true extent of her talent. For instance, Dryer’s elient list also
includes physicists, noted journalists, archaeologists, lawyers, and
politicians, and she has used her abilities to assist the police and
frequently does consultation work for psychologists, psychiatrists, and
medical doctors.

Like Brennan, Dryer can give long-distance readings, but prefers to
be in the same room with the person. She can also see a person’s energy
field as well with her eyes closed as she can with her eyes open. In fact,
she generally keeps her eyes closed during a reading to help her
concentrate solely on the energy field. This does not mean that she sees
the aura only in her mind’s eye. “It’s always in front of me as if Fm
looking at a movie or a play,” says Dryer. “It’s as real as the room I’m
sitting in. Actually, it’s more real and more brightly colored.” 9

However, she does not see the precise stratified layers described by
other clairvoyants, and she often doesn’t even see the outline of the



physical body. “A person’s physical body can come into it, but rarely
because that’s seeing the etheric body rather than seeing the aura or the
energy field around them. If I’m seeing the etheric, it’s usually because
it contains leaks or rips that are keeping the aura from being whole.
Thus I cannot see it completely. There are only patches of it. It’s kind of
like a ripped blanket or a torn curtain. Holes in the etheric field are
usually the result of trauma, injury, illness, or some other kind of
devastating experience. ”

But beyond seeing the etheric, Dryer says that instead of seeing the
layers of the aura like tiers of cake piled one on top of the other, she
experiences them as changing textures and intensities of visual sensa-
tion. She compares this to being immersed in the ocean and feeling
water of different temperatures wash by. “Rather than getting into rigid
concepts like layers, I tend to see the energy field in terms of
movements and waves of energy,” she says. “It’s as if my vision is
telescoping through various levels and dimensions of the energy field,
but I don’t actually see it neatly arranged in various layers.”

This does not mean that Dryer’s perception of the human energy field
is in any way less detailed than Brennan’s. She perceives a dazzling
amount of pattern and structure — kaleidoscopic clouds of color shot
through with light, complex images, glistening shapes, and gossamer
mists. However, not all energy fields are created equal. According to
Dryer, shallow people have shallow and humdrum auras. Conversely,
the more complex the person, the more complex and interesting their
energy field. “A person’s energy field is as individual as their fingerprint.
I’ve never really seen any two that look alike,” she says.

Like Brennan, Dryer can diagnose illnesses by looking at a person’s
aura, and when she chooses she can adjust her vision and see the
chakras. But Dryer’s special skill is the ability to peer deep into a
person’s psyche and give them an eerily accurate status report of the
weaknesses, strengths, needs, and general health of their emotional,
psychological, and spiritual being. So profound are her talents in this
area that some have likened a session with Dryer to six months of
psychotherapy. Numerous clients have credited her with completely
transforming their lives, and her files are filled with glowing letters of

I, too, can attest to Dryer’s abilities. In my first reading with her, and
although we were virtual strangers, she proceeded to describe things
about me that not even my closest friends know. These were

Seeing Hoiographicaiiy


not just vague platitudes, but specific and detailed assessments of my
talents, vulnerabilities, and personality dynamics. By the end of the
two-hour session I was convinced that Dryer had not been looking at my
physical presence, but at the energy construct of my psyche itself. I have
also had the privilege of talking with and/or listening to the session
recordings of over two dozen of Dryer’s clients, and have discovered
that, almost without exception, others have found her as accurate and
insightful as did I.

Doctors Who See the Human Energy Field

Although the existence of the human energy field is not recognized by
the medical orthodox community, it has not been completely ignored by
medical practitioners. One medical professional who takes the energy
field seriously is neurologist and psychiatrist Shafica Karagulla.
Karagulla received her degree of doctor of medicine and surgery from
the American University of Beirut, Lebanon, and obtained her training
in psychiatry under the well-known psychiatrist Professor Sir David K.
Henderson, at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital for Mental and Nervous
Disorders. She also spent three and a half years as a research associate to
Wilder Penfietd, the Canadian neurosurgeon whose landmark studies of
memory launched both Lashley and Pribram on their quest

Karagulla began as a skeptic, but after encountering several in-
dividuals who could see auras, and confirming their ability to make
accurate medical diagnoses as a result of what they saw, she became a
believer. Karagulla calls the faculty to see the human energy field
higher sense perception, or HSP, and in the 1960s she set out to
determine if any members of the medical profession also possessed the
ability. She put out various feelers among her friends and colleagues,
but at first the going was slow. Even doctors who were said to have the
ability were reluctant to meet with her. After being put off repeatedly by
one such doctor, she finally made an appointment to see him as a

She entered his office, but instead of allowing him to perform a
physical examination to diagnose her condition, she challenged him to
use his higher sense perception. Realizing he was cornered, he gave in.
“AH right, stay where you are,” he told her. “Don’t tell me any-



thing.” Then he scanned her body and gave her a quick run-down of her
health, including a description of an internal condition she had that
would eventually require surgery, a condition she had secretly already
diagnosed. He was “correct in every detaii,” says Karagulla. 1 ”

As Karagulla’s network of contacts expanded, she met doctor after
doctor with similar gifts and describes these encounters in her book
Breakthrough to Creativity. Most of these physicians were unaware that
other individuals existed who possessed similar talents, and felt they
were alone and peculiar in this regard. Nonetheless, they invariably
described what they were seeing as an “energy field” or a “moving web
of frequency” around the body and interpenetrating the body. Some saw
chakras, but because they were ignorant of the term, they described
them as “vortices of energy at certain points along the spine, connected
with or influencing the endocrine system.” And almost without
exception they kept their abilities a secret out of fear of damaging their
professional reputations.

Out of respect for their privacy, Karagulla identifies them in her book
by first name only but says they include famous surgeons, Cornell
University professors of medicine, heads of departments in large
hospitals, and Mayo Clinic physicians. “I was continually surprised to
find how many members of the medical profession had HSP abilities,”
she writes. “Most of them felt a little uneasy about their gifts, but
finding them useful in diagnosis, they used them. They came from many
parts of the country, and although they were unknown to each other,
they all reported similar types of experiences. ” At the end of her report,
she concludes, “When many reliable individuals independently report
the same kind of phenomena, it is time science takes cognizance of it.” 11
Not all health professionals are so opposed to going public with their
abilities. One such individual is Dr. Dolores Krieger, a professor of
nursing at New York University. Krieger became interested in the
human energy field after participating in a study of the abilities of Oscar
Estebany, a well-known Hungarian healer. After discovering that
Estebany could raise the hemoglobin levels in ill patients simply by
manipulating their fields, Krieger set out to learn more about the
mysterious energies involved. She immersed herself in a study oiprana,
the chakras, and the aura, and eventually became a student of Dora
Kunz, another well-known clairvoyant. Under Kunz’s guidance, she
learned how to feel blockages in the human energy field and to heal by
manipulating the field with her hands.

Seeing Holographic ally


Realizing the enormous medical potential of Kunz’s techniques,
Krieger decided to teach what she had learned to others. Because she
knew terms such as aura and chakra would have negative connotations
for many health-care professionals, she decided to call her healing
method “therapeutic touch.” The first class she taught on therapeutic
touch was a master’s level course for nurses at New York University
entitled “Frontiers in Nursing: The Actualization of Potential for
Therapeutic Field Interaction.” Both the course and the technique
proved so successful that Krieger has since taught therapeutic touch to
literally thousands of nurses, and it is now used in hospitals around the

The effectiveness of therapeutic touch has also been demonstrated in
several studies. For example, Dr. Janet Quinn, an associate professor
and assistant director of nursing research at the University of South
Carolina at Columbia, decided to see if therapeutic touch could lower
the anxiety levels of heart patients. To accomplish this she devised a
double -blind study in which one group of nurses trained in the
technique would pass their hands over a group of heart patients’ bodies.
A second group with no training would pass their hands over the bodies
of another group of heart patients, but without actually performing the
technique. Quinn found that the anxiety levels in the authentically
treated patients dropped 17 percent after only five minutes of therapy,
but there was no change in anxiety levels among the patients who
received the “fake” treatment Quinn’s study was the lead story in the
Science Times section of the March 26, 1985, issue of the New York

Another health professional who lectures widely about the human
energy field is University of Southern California heart and lung spe-
cialist Vf. Brugh Joy. Joy, who is a graduate of both Johns Hopkins and
the Mayo Clinic, discovered his gift .in 1972 while examining a patient
in his office. Instead of seeing the aura, Joy initially was only able to
feel its presence with his hands. “I was examining a healthy -male in his
early twenties,” he says. “As my hand passed over the solar plexus area,
the pit of the stomach, I sensed something that felt like a warm cloud. It
seemed to radiate out three to four feet from the body, perpendicular to
the surface and to be shaped like a cylinder about four inches in
diameter.” 12

Joy went on to discover that all his patients had palpable cyiinderiike
radiations emanating not only from their stomachs, but from various
other points on their bodies. It wasn’t until he read an ancient Hindu



book about the human energy system that he found he had discovered,
or rather rediscovered, the chakras. Like Brennan, Joy thinks the
holographic model offers the best explanation for understanding the
human energy field. He also feels that the ability to see auras is latent in
alt of us. ” 1 believe that reaching expanded states of consciousness is
merely the attuning of our central nervous system to perceptive states
that have always existed in us but have been blocked by our outer
mental conditioning,” says Joy. 13

To prove his point, Joy now spends most of his time teaching others
how to sense the human energy field. One of Joy’s students is Michael
Crichton, the author of such bestsellers as The Andromeda Strain and
Sphere) and the director of the motion pictures Coma and The First
Great Train Robbery. In his recent bestselling autobiography Travels,
Crichton, who obtained his medical degree from the Harvard University
Medical School, describes how he learned to feel and eventually see the
human energy field by studying under both Joy and other gifted teachers.
The experience astonished and transformed Crichton. “There isn’t any
delusion. It is absolutely clear that this body energy is a genuine
phenomenon of some kind,” he states. 14

Chaos Holographic Patterns

The increasing willingness of doctors to go public with such abilities is
not the only change that has taken place since Karagulla did her
investigations. Over the past twenty years Valerie Hunt, a physical
therapist and professor of kinesiology at UCLA, has developed a way to
confirm experimentally the existence of the human energy field.
Medical science has long known that humans are electromagnetic
beings. Doctors routinely use electrocardiographs to make electrocar-
diograms (EKGs) or records, of the electrical activity of the heart, and
electroencephalographs to make electroencephalograms (EEGs) of the
brain’s electrical activity. Hunt has discovered that an electromyo-graph,
a device used to measure the electrical activity in the muscles, can also
pick up the electrical presence of the human energy field.

Although Hunt’s original research involved the study of human
muscular movement, she became interested in the energy field after
encountering a dancer who said she used her own energy field to help
her dance. This inspired Hunt to make electromyograms (EMGs) of the

Seeing Holographically


electrical activity in the woman’s muscies while she danced, and also to
study the effect healers had on the electrical activity in the muscles of
people being healed. Her research eventually expanded to include
individuals who could see the human energy field, and it was here that
she made some of her most significant discoveries.

The normal frequency range of the electrical activity in the brain is
between and 100 cycles per second (cps), with most of the activity
occurring between and 30 cps. Muscle frequency goes up to about 225
cps, and the heart goes up to about 250 cps, but this is where electrical
activity associated with biological function drops off. In addition to these,
Hunt discovered that the electrodes of the electromyo-graph could pick
up another field of energy radiating from the body, much subtler and
smaller in amplitude than the traditionally recognized body electricities
but with frequencies that averaged between 100 and 1600 cps, and
which sometimes went even higher. Moreover, instead of emanating
from the brain, heart, or muscles, the field was strongest in the areas of
the body associated with the chakras. “The results were so exciting that I
simply was not able to sleep that night,” says Hunt. “The scientific
model I had subscribed to throughout my life just couldn’t explain these
findings.” 15

Hunt also discovered that when an aura reader saw a particular color
in a person’s energy field, the electro myograph always picked up a
specific pattern of frequencies that Hunt learned to associate with that
color. She was able to see this pattern on an oscilloscope, a device that
converts electrical waves into a visual pattern on a monochromatic
video display screen. For example, when an aura reader saw blue in a
person’s energy field, Hunt could confirm that it was blue by looking at
the pattern on the oscilloscope. In one experiment she even tested eight
aura readers simultaneously to see if they would agree with the
oscilloscope as well as with each other. “It was the same right down the
line,” says Hunt. 16

Once Hunt confirmed the existence of the human energy field, she,
too, became convinced that the holographic idea offers one model for
understanding it. In addition to its frequency aspects, she points out that
the energy field, and indeed all of the body’s electrical systems, is
holographic in another way. Like the information in a hologram, these
systems are distributed globally throughout the body. For instance, the
electrical activity measured by an electroencephalograph is strongest in
the brain, but an EEG reading can also be made by attaching an
electrode to the toe. Similarly, an EKG can be picked up



in the little finger. It’s stronger and higher in amplitude in the heart, but
its frequency and pattern are the same everywhere in the body. Hunt
believes this is significant. Although every portion of what she calls the
“holographic field reality” of the aura contains aspects of the whole
energy field, different portions are not absolutely identical to each other.
These differing amplitudes keep the energy field from being a static
hologram, and instead allow it to be dynamic and flowing, says Hunt.

One of Hunt’s most startling findings is that certain talents and
abilities seem to be related to the presence of specific frequencies in a
person’s energy field. She has found that when the main focus of a
person’s consciousness is on the material world, the frequencies of their
energy field tend to be in the lower range and are not too far removed
from the 250 cps of the body’s biological frequencies. In addition to
these, people who are psychic or who have healing abilities also have
frequencies of roughly 400 to 800 cps in their field. People who can go
into trance and apparently channel other information sources through
them, skip these “psychic” frequencies entirely and operate in a narrow
band between 800 and 900 cps. “They don’t have any psychic breadth at
all,” states Hunt. “They’re up there in their own field. It’s narrow. It’s
pinpointed, and they literally are almost out of it” 17

People who have frequencies above 900 cps are what Hunt calls
mystical personalities. Whereas psychics and trance mediums are often
just conduits of information, mystics possess the wisdom to know what
to do with the information, says Hunt. They are aware of the cosmic
interrelatedness of all things and are in touch with every level of human
experience. They are anchored in ordinary reality, but often have both
psychic and trance abilities. However, their frequencies also extend way
beyond the bands associated with these capabilities. Using a modified
electromyogram (an electro myogram can normally detect frequencies
only up to 20,000 cps) Hunt has encountered individuals who have
frequencies as high as 200,000 cps in their energy fields. This is
intriguing, for mystical traditions have often referred to highly spiritual
individuals as possessing a “higher vibration” than normal people. If
Hunt’s findings are correct, they seem to add credence to this assertion.

Another of Hunt’s discoveries involves the new science of chaos. As
its name implies, chaos is the study of chaotic phenomena, i.e., pro-
cesses that are so haphazard they do not appear to be governed by any

Seeing Holo graphically


laws. For example, when smoke rises from an extinguished candle it
flows upward in a thin and narrow stream. Eventually the structure of
the stream breaks down and becomes turbulent. Turbulent smoke is said
to be chaotic because its behavior can no longer be predicted by science.
Other examples of chaotic phenomena include water when it crashes at
the bottom of a waterfall, the seemingly random electrical fluctuations
that rage through the brain of an epileptic during a seizure, and the
weather when several different temperature and air-pressure fronts

In the past decade science has discovered that many chaotic phe-
nomena are not as disordered as they seem and often contain hidden
patterns and regularities (recall Bohm’s assertion that there is no such
thing as disorder, only orders of indefinitely high degree). Scientists
have also discovered mathematical ways of finding some of the
regularities that lie hidden in chaotic phenomena. One of these involves
a special kind of mathematical analysis that can convert data about a
chaotic phenomenon into a shape on a computer screen. If the data
contains no hidden patterns, the resulting shape will be a straight line.
But if the chaotic phenomenon does contain hidden regularities, the
shape on the computer screen will look something like the spiral designs
children make by winding colored yarn around an array of nails
pounded into a board. These shapes are called “chaos patterns” or
“strange attractors” (because the tines that compose the shape seem to
be attracted again and again to certain areas of the computer screen, just
as the yarn might be said to be repeatedly “attracted” to the array of nails
around which it is wound).

When Hunt observed energy field data on the oscilloscope, she no-
ticed that it changed constantly. Sometimes it came in great clumps,
sometimes it waned and became patchy, as if the energy field itself were
in an unceasing state of fluctuation. At first glance these changes
seemed random, but Hunt sensed intuitively they possessed some order.
Realizing that chaos analysis might reveal whether she was right or not,
she sought out a mathematician. First they ran four seconds of data from
an EKG through the computer to see what would happen. They got a
straight line. Then they ran the same amount of data from an EEG and
an EMG. The EEG produced a straight line and the EMG produced a
slightly swollen line, but still no chaos pattern. Even when they
submitted data from the lower frequencies of the human energy field,
they got a straight line. But when they analyzed the very high
frequencies of the field they met with success. “We got



the most dynamic chaos pattern you ever saw,” says Hunt. 1 ”

This meant that although the kaleidoscopic changes taking place in
the energy field appeared to be random, they were actually very highly
ordered and rich with pattern. “The pattern is never a repeatable one, but
it’s so dynamic and complex, I call it a chaos holograph pattern,” Hunt
states. 19

Hunt believes her discovery was the first true chaos pattern to be
found in a major eleetrobiological system. Recently researchers have
found chaos patterns in EEG recordings of the brain, but they needed
many minutes of data from numerous electrodes to obtain such a pattern.
Hunt obtained a chaos pattern from three to four seconds of data
recorded by one electrode, suggesting that the human energy field is far
richer in information and possesses a far more complex and dynamic
organization than even the electrical activity of the brain.

What Is the Human Energy Field Made Of?

Despite the human energy field’s electrical aspects. Hunt does not
believe it is purely electromagnetic in nature. “We have a feeling that it
is much more complex and without doubt composed of an as yet
undiscovered energy,” she says. 20

What is this undiscovered energy? At present we do not know. Our
best clue comes from the fact that almost without exception psychics
describe it as having a higher frequency or vibration than normal
matter-energy. Given the uncanny accuracy talented psychics have in
perceiving illnesses in the energy field, we should perhaps pay serious
attention to this observation. The universality of this perception — even
ancient Hindu literature asserts that the energy body possesses a higher
vibration than normai matter — may be an indication that such
individuals are intuiting an important fact about the energy field.

Ancient Hindu literature also describes matter as being composed of
anu, or “atoms,” and says that the subtle vibratory energies of the human
energy field exist paramanu, or literally “beyond the atom.” This is
interesting, for Bohm also believes that at a subquantum level beyond
the atom there are many subtle energies still unknown to science. He
confesses that he does not know whether the human energy field exists
or not, but in commenting on the possibility, he states, “The implicate
order has many levels of subtlety. If our attention can

Seeing Holo graphically


go to those levels of subtlety, then we should be able to see more than
we ordinarily see.'” 1

It is worth noting that we really don’t know what any field is. As
Bohm has said, “What is an electric field? We don’t know.’ l2E When we
discover a new kind of field it seems mysterious. Then we name it, get
used to dealing with it and describing its properties, and it no longer
seems mysterious. But we still do not know what an electric or a
gravitational field really is. As we saw in an earlier chapter, we don’t
even know what electrons are. We can only describe how they behave.
This suggests that the human energy field will also ultimately be defined
in terms of how it behaves, and research such as Hunt’s will only further
our understanding.

Three-Dimensional Images in the Aura

If these inordinately subtle energies are the stuff from which the human
energy field is made, we may rest assured that they possess qualities
unlike the kinds of energy with which we are normally familiar. One of
these is evident in the human energy field’s nonlocal characteristics.
Another, and one that is particularly holographic, is the aura’s ability to
manifest as an amorphous blur of energy, or occasionally form itself into
three-dimensional images. Talented psychics often report seeing such
“holograms” floating in people’s auras. These images are usually of
objects and ideas that hold a prominent position in the thoughts of the
person around whom they are seen. Some occult traditions hold that
such images are a product of the third, or mental, layer of the aura, but
until we have the means to confirm or deny this allegation, we must
confine ourselves to the experiences of the psychics who are able to see
images in the aura.

One such psychic is Beatrice Rich. As often happens, Rich’s powers
manifested at an early age. When she was a child, objects in her
presence would occasionally move about on their own accord. When
she grew older she discovered she knew things about people she had no
normal means of knowing. Although she began her career as an artist,
her clairvoyant talents proved so impressive that she decided to become
a full-time psychic. Now she gives readings for individuals from all
walks of life, from housewives to chief executives of corporations, and
articles about her work have appeared in such diverse publi-



cations as New York magazine, World Tennis, and New York Woman.

Rich often sees images floating around or hovering near her clients.
Once she saw silver spoons, silver plates, and similar objects circling
around a man’s head. Because it was early in her explorations of psychic
phenomena, the experience startled her. At first she did not know why
she was seeing what she was seeing. But finally she told the man and
discovered that he was in the import/export business and traded in the
very objects she was seeing circling his head. The experience was
riveting and changed her perceptions forever.

Dryer has had many similar experiences. Once during a reading she
saw a bunch of potatoes whirling around a woman’s head. Like Rich,
she was at first dumbfounded but summoned her courage and asked the
woman if potatoes had any special meaning for her. The woman
laughed and handed Dryer her business card. ” She was from the Idaho
Potato Board, or something like that,” says Dryer. “You know, the
potato grower’s equivalent of the American Dairy Association.” 23

These images don’t always just hover in the aura, but sometimes can
appear to be ghostly extensions of the body itself- On one occasion
Dryer saw a wispy and holographiclike layer of mud clinging to a
woman’s hands and arms. Given the woman’s impeccable grooming and
expensive attire, Dryer could not imagine why thoughts of mucking
around in some kind of viscous sludge would be occupying her mind.
Dryer asked her if she understood the image, and the woman nodded,
explaining that she was a sculptor and had tried out a new medium that
morning that had clung to her arms and hands exactly as Dryer had

I, too, have had similar experiences when looking at the energy field.
Once, while deep in thought about a novel I was working on about
werewolves (as some readers may be aware, I have a fondness for
writing fiction about folkloric subjects), I noticed that the ghostly image
of a werewolf’s body had formed around my own body. I would quickly
like to stress that this was a purely visual phenomenon and at no time
did I feel I had in any way become a werewolf. Nonetheless, the
holographiclike image that enveloped my body was real enough that
when I lifted my arm I could actually see the individual hairs in the fur
and the way the canine nails protruded from the wolfish hand that
encased my own hand. Indeed, everything about these features was
absolutely real, save that they were translucent and I could see my own
flesh-and-blood hand beneath them. The experience should

Seeing Holographically


have been frightening, but for some reason it wasn’t, and I found myself
only fascinated by what I was seeing.

What was significant about this experience was that Dryer was my
house guest at the time and happened to walk into the room while I was
still sheathed in this phantomlike werewolf body. She reacted
immediately and said, “Oh my, you must be thinking about your were-
wolf novel because you’ve become a werewolf. ” We compared notes
and discovered that we were each observing the same features. We
became involved in conversation, and as my thoughts strayed from the
novel, the werewolf image slowly faded.

Movies in the Aura

The images that psychics see in the energy field are not always static.
Rich says she often sees what looks like a little transparent movie going
on around a client’s head: ” Sometimes I see a small image of the person
behind their head or shoulders doing various things they do in life. My
clients tell me that my descriptions are very accurate and specific. I can
see their offices and what their bosses look like. I can see what they’ve
thought of and what’s happened to them during the last six months.
Recently I told a client that I could see her home and she had masks and
flutes hanging on her wall. She said, ‘No, no, no.’ 1 said yes, there are
musical instruments hanging on the wall, mostly Outes, and there are
masks. And then she said, ‘Oh, that’s my summer home.’ ” w

Dryer says she also sees what look like three-dimensional movies in a
person’s energy field. “Usually they’re in color, but they can also be
brown, or look like tintypes. Often they depict a story about the person
that can take anywhere from five minutes to an hour to unfold. The
images are also incredibly detailed. When I see a person sitting in a
room I can tell them how many plants are in the room, how many leaves
are on each plant, and how many bricks are in the wall. I usually don’t get
into such minute description unless it seems pertinent. “~

I can attest to Dryer’s accuracy. I have always been an organized
person, and when I was a child I was quite precocious in this regard.
Once when I was five years old f spent several hours meticulously
storing and organizing all of my toys in a closet. When I was finished I
showed my mother what I had done and admonished her please not



to touch anything in the closet because I did not want her messing up
my carefully ordered arrangements. My mother’s account of this inci-
dent has amused the family ever since. During my first reading with
Dryer she described this incident in detail, as well as many other events
in my life, as she watched it unfold like a movie in my energy field. She,
too, chuckled as she described it.

Dryer likens the images she sees to holograms and says that when she
chooses one and starts to watch it, it seems to expand and fill the entire
room. “If I see something going on with a person’s shoulder, such as an
injury, suddenly the whole scene widens. That’s when I get the sense
that it’s a hologram because sometimes I feel I can step right into it and
be a part of it. It’s not happening to me, but around me. It’s almost as if
I’m in a three-dimensional movie, a holographic movie, with the
person.” 8 *

Dryer’s holographic vision is not limited to events from a person’s life.
She sees visual representations of the operations of the unconscious
mind as well. As we all know, the unconscious mind speaks in a
language of symbols and metaphors. This is why dreams often seem so
nonsensical and mysterious. However, once one learns how to interpret
the language of the unconscious, the meanings of dreams beeome clear.
Dreams are not the only things that are written in the parlance of the
unconscious. Individuals who are familiar with the language of the
psyche — a language psychologist Erich Fromm calls the “forgotten
language,” because most of us have forgotten how to interpret
it — recognize its presence in other human creations such as myths, fairy
tales, and religious visions.

Some of the holographic movies Dryer sees in the human energy field
are also written in this language and resemble the metaphorical
messages of dreams. We now know that the unconscious mind is active
not only while we dream, but all of the time. Dryer is able to peel back a
person’s waking self and gaze directly at the unceasing river of images
that is always flowing through their unconscious mind. And both
practice and her natural, intuitive gifts have made her extremely skilled
at deciphering the language of the unconscious. ” Jung-ian psychologists
love me,” says Dryer.

In addition, Dryer has a special way of knowing whether she has
interpreted an image correctly. “If I haven’t explained it correctly, it
doesn’t go away,” she states. “It just stays in the energy field. But once
I’ve told the person everything they need to know about a particular
image, it begins to dissolve and disappear.” 27 Dryer thinks this is

Seeing Holographically


because it is a client’s own unconscious mind that chooses what images
to show her. Like Ullman, she believes the psyche is always trying to
teach the conscious self things it needs to know to become healthier and
happier, and to grow spiritually.

Dryer’s ability to observe and interpret the innermost workings of a
person’s psyche is one of the reasons she is able to effect such profound
transformations in many of her clients. The first time she described the
stream of images she saw unfolding in my own energy field, I had the
uncanny sensation she was telling me about one of my own dreams, save
that it was a dream I had not yet dreamed. At first the phantasmagoria of
images was only mysteriously familiar, but as she unraveled and
explained each symbol and metaphor in turn, I recognized the
machinations of my inner self, both the things I accepted and the things I
was less willing to embrace. Indeed, it is clear from the work of psychics
like Rich and Dryer that there is an enormous amount of information in
the energy field. One wonders if this is perhaps why Hunt obtained such
a pronounced chaos pattern when she analyzed data from the aura.

The ability to see images in the human energy field is not new. Nearly
three hundred years ago the great Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg
reported that he could see a “wave-substance” around people, and in the
wave-substance a person’s thoughts were visible as images he called
“portrayals.” In commenting on the inability of other people to see this
wave-substance around the body, he observed, “I could see solid
concepts of thought as though they were surrounded by a kind of wave.
But nothing reaches [normal] human sensation except what is in the
middle and seems solid. ” M Swedenborg could also see portrayals in his
own energy field: “When I was thinking about someone I knew, then his
image appeared as he looked when he was named in human presence;
but all around, like something flowing in waves, was everything I had
known and thought about him from boyhood.” 23

Holographic Body Assessment

Frequency is not the only thing that is distributed holographically
throughout the field. Psychics report that the wealth of personal infor-
mation the field contains can also be found in every portion of the



body’s aura. As Brennan puts it, “The aura not only represents, but also
contains, the whole. ” so California clinical psychologist Ronald Wong
Jue agrees. Jue, a former president of the Association for Transpersonal
Psychology and a talented clairvoyant, has found that an individual’s
history is even contained in the “energy patterns” inherent in the body,
” The body is a kind of microcosm, a universe unto itself reflecting all of
the different factors that a person is dealing with and trying to
integrate,” says Jue.

Like Dryer and Rich, Jue has the psychic ability to tune into movies
about the important issues in a person’s life, but instead of seeing them
in the energy field, he conjures them up in his mind’s eye by laying his
hands on a person and literally psychometrizing their body. Jue says
this technique enables him to determine quickly the emotional scripts,
core issues, and relationship patterns that are most prominent in a
person’s life, and often uses it on his patients to facilitate the therapeutic
process. “The technique was actually taught to me by a psychiatrist
colleague of mine named Ernest Pecci,” Jue states. “He called it ‘body
reading.’ Instead of talking about the etheric body and things like that, I
chose to use the holographic model as a way of explaining it and call it
Holographic Body Assessment” 31 In addition to using it in his clinical
practice, Jue also gives seminars in which he teaches others how to use
the technique.

X-Ray Vision

In the last chapter we explored the possibility that the body is not a solid
construct, but is itself a kind of holographic image. Another faculty
possessed by many clairvoyants seems to support this notion, that is,
the ability to literally look inside a person’s body. Individuals who are
gifted at seeing the energy field can also often adjust their vision and
see through the flesh and bones of the body as if they were no more than
layers of colored mist.

During the course of her research, Karagulla discovered a number of
people, both in and out of the medical profession, who possessed this
X-ray vision. One, a woman she identifies as Diane, was the head of a
corporation. Just before meeting Diane, Karagulla wrote, “For me as a
psychiatrist to be meeting somebody who was reported to be

Seeing Holojiraphically


able to ‘see’ right through me was a shattering reversal of my usual
procedures.” 82

Karagulla put Diane through a lengthy series of tests, introducing her
to people and having her make on-the-spot diagnoses. On one of these
occasions Diane described a woman’s energy field as “wilted” and
“broken into fragments” and said this indicated she had a serious
problem in her physical body. She then looked into the woman’s body
and saw that there was an intestinal blockage near her spleen. This
surprised Karagulla because the woman showed none of the symptoms
that usually indicated such a serious condition. Nonetheless, the woman
went to her doctor, and X rays revealed a blockage in the precise area
Diane had described. Three days later the woman underwent surgery to
have the life-threatening obstruction removed.

In another series of tests Karagulla had Diane diagnose patients at
random in the outpatient clinic of a large New York hospital. After
Diane made a diagnosis Karagulla would determine the accuracy of her
observations by referring to the patient’s records. On one of these
occasions Diane looked at a patient unknown to both of them and told
Karagulla that the woman’s pituitary gland {a gland deep in the brain)
was missing, her pancreas looked as if it was not functioning properly,
her breasts had been affected but were now missing, she didn’t have
enough energy going through her spine from the waist down, and she
had trouble with her legs. The medical report on the woman revealed
that her pituitary gland had been surgically removed, she was taking
hormones which affected her pancreas, she had had a double mastec-
tomy due to cancer, an operation on her back to decompress her spinal
cord and relieve pains in her legs, and her nerves had been damaged,
making it difficult for her to empty her bladder.

In case after case Diane revealed that she could gaze effortlessly into
the depths of the physical body. She gave detailed descriptions of the
condition of the internal organs. She saw the state of the intestines, the
presence or absence of the various glands, and even described the
density or brittleness of the bones. Concludes Karagulla, “Although I
could not evaluate her findings regarding the energy body, her
observations of physical conditions correlated with amazing accuracy
with the medical diagnoses.’™

Brennan is also skilled at looking into the human body and calls the
ability “internal vision.” Using internal vision she has accurately diag-
nosed a wide range of conditions including bone fractures, fibroid



tumors, and cancer. She says she can often tell the condition of an organ
by its color: for example, a healthy liver looks dark red, a jaundiced liver
looks a sickly yellow-brown, and the liver of an individual undergoing
chemotherapy usually looks green-brown. Like many other psychics
with internal vision, Brennan can adjust the focus of her vision and even
see microscopic structures, such as viruses and individual blood cells.

I have personally encountered several psychics with internal vision
and can corroborate its authenticity. One psychic I have seen demon-
strate the ability is Dryer. On one of these occasions she not only
accurately diagnosed an internal medical problem I was having, but
offered some startling information of an entirety different nature along
with it. A few years back I started having trouble with my spleen. To try
and remedy the situation, I began performing daily visualization
exercises, seeing images of my spleen in a state of wholeness and health,
seeing it being bathed in healing light, and so on. Unfortunately, I am a
very impatient person, and when I did not have overnight success I got
angry. During my next meditation I mentally scolded my spleen and
warned it in no uncertain terms that it better start doing what I wanted.
This incident took place purely in the privacy of my own thoughts, and I
quickly forgot about it

A few days later I saw Dryer and asked her if she could look into my
body and tell me if there was anything I should be aware of (I did not tell
her about my health problem). Nonetheless, she immediately described
what was wrong with my spleen and then paused, scowling as if she was
confused. “Your spleen’s very upset about something,” she murmured.
And then suddenly it hit her. “Have you been yelling at your spleen?” I
sheepishly admitted that I had. Dryer all but threw her hands up. “You
mustn’t do that. Your spleen became ill because it thought it was doing
what you wanted. That was because you were unconsciously giving it
the wrong directions. Now that you’ve yelled at it, it’s really confused.”
She shook her head with concern. “Never, never get angry at your body
or your internal organs,” she advised. “Only send them positive

The incident not only revealed Dryer’s skill at looking inside the
human body, but also seemed to suggest that my spleen has some sort of
mentality or consciousness all of its own. It reminded me not only of
Pert’s assertion that she no longer knows where the brain leaves off and
the body begins, but made me wonder if perhaps all of the body’s
subcomponents — glands, bones, organs, and cells — possess

Seeing Holographicaliy


their own intelligence? If the body is truly holographic, it may be that
Pert’s remark is more correct than we realize, and the consciousness of
the whole is very much contained in all of its parts.

Internal Vision and Shamanism

In some shamanic cultures internal vision is one of the prerequisites for
becoming a shaman. Among the Araucanian Indians of Chile and the
Argentine pampas, a newly initiated shaman is taught to pray
specifically for the faculty. This is because the shaman’s major role in
Araucanian culture is to diagnose and heal illness, for which internal
vision is considered essential. ‘”” Australian shamans refer to the ability as
the “strong eye,” or “seeing with the heart.” 31 The Jivaro Indians of the
forested eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian Andes acquire the ability by
drinking an extract of a jungle vine called ayahuasca, a plant containing
a hallucinogenic substance believed to bestow psychic abilities on the
imbiber. According to Michael Harner, an anthropologist at the New
School for Social Research in New York who specializes in shamanic
studies, ayakuasca permits the Jivaro shaman “to see into the body of
the patient as though it were glass. ” 3B

Indeed, the ability to “see” an illness — whether it involves actually
looking inside the body or seeing the malady represented as a kind of
metaphorical hologram, such as a three-dimensional image of a de-
monic and repulsive creature inside or near the body — is universal in
shamanic traditions. But whatever the culture in which internal vision is
reported, its implications are the same. The body is an energy construct
and ultimately may be no more substantive than the energy field in
which it is embedded.

The Energy Field as Cosmic Blueprint

The idea that the physical body is just one more level of density in the
human energy field and is itself a kind of hologram that has coalesced
out of the interference patterns of the aura may explain both the
extraordinary healing powers of the mind and the enormous control it
has over the body in general. Because an illness can appear in the



energy field weeks and even months before it appears in the body,
many psychics believe that disease actually originates in the energy
field. This suggests that the field is in some way more primary than the
physical body and functions as a kind of blueprint from which the body
gets its structural cues. Put another way, the energy field may be the
body’s own version of an implicate order.

This may explain Achterberg’s and Siegel’s findings that patients are
already “imaging” their illnesses many months before the illnesses
manifest in their bodies. At present, medical science is at a loss to
explain how mental imagery could actually create an illness. But, as we
have seen, ideas that are prominent in our thoughts quickly appear as
images in the energy field. If the energy field is the blueprint that guides
and molds the body, it may be that by imaging an illness, even
unconsciously, and repeatedly reinforcing its presence in the field, we
are in effect programming the body to manifest the illness.

Similarly, this same dynamic linkage between mental images, the
energy field, and the physical body may be one of the reasons imagery
and visualization can also heal the body. It may even help explain how
faith and meditation on religious images enable stigmatists to grow
nail-like fleshy protuberances from their hands. Our current scientific
understanding is at a loss to explain such a biological capacity, but
again, constant prayer and meditation may cause such images to
become so impressed in the energy field that the constant repetition of
these patterns is finally given form in the body.

One researcher who believes it is the energy field that molds the body
and not the other way around is Richard Gerber, a Detroit physician
who has spent the last twelve years investigating the medical
implications of the body’s subtle energy fields. “The etheric body is a
holographic energy template that guides the growth and development of
the physical body,” says Gerber. 37

Gerber believes that the distinct layers some psychics see in the aura
also play a factor in the dynamic relationship among thought, the
energy field, and the physical body. Just as the physical body is subor-
dinate to the etheric, the etheric body is subordinate to the astral/
emotional body, the astral/emotional to the mental, and so on, says
Gerber, with each body functioning as the template for the one before it.
Thus the subtler the layer of the energy field in which an image or
thought manifests, the greater its ability to heal and reshape the body.
“Because the mental body feeds energy into the astral/emotional

Seeing Holographieally


body, which then funnels down into the etheric and physical bodies,
healing a person at the mental level is stronger and produces longer
lasting results than healing from either the astral or etheric levels,” says
Gerber. 31 *

Physicist Tiller agrees. “The thoughts that one creates generate
patterns at the mind level of nature. So we see that illness, in fact,
eventually becomes manifest from the altered mind patterns through the
rachet effect — first, to effects at the etheric level and then, ultimately, at
the physical level [where] we see it openly as disease.” Tiller believes
the reason illnesses often recur is that medicine currently treats only the
physical level. He feels that if doctors could treat tbe energy field as
well, they would bring about longer lasting cures. Until then, many
treatments “will not be permanent because we have not altered the basic
hologram at the mind and spiritual levels,” he states. 33

In a wide-ranging speculation Tiller even suggests that the universe
itself started as a subtle energy field and gradually became dense and
material through a similar rachet effect. As he sees it, it may be that God
created the universe as a divine pattern or idea. Like the image a psychic
sees floating in the human energy field, this divine pattern functioned as
a template, influencing and molding increasingly less subtle levels of
the cosmic energy field “on down the line via a series of holograms,”
until it eventually coalesced into a hologram of a physical universe. 40

If this is true, it suggests that the human body is holographic in
another way, for each of us truly would be a universe in miniature.
Furthermore, if our thoughts can cause ghostly holographic images to
form, not only in our own energy fields, but in the subtle energetic
levels of reality itself, it may help explain how the human mind is able
to effect some of the miracles we examined in the previous chapter. It
may even explain synchronicities, or how processes and images from
the innermost depths of our psyche manage to take form in external
reality. Again, it may be that our thoughts are constantly affecting the
subtle energetic levels of the holographic universe, but only emotion-
ally powerful thoughts, such as the ones that accompany moments of
crisis and transformation — the kind of events that seem to engender
Synchronicities — are potent enough to manifest as a series of coinci-
dences in physical reality.



A Participatory Reality

Of course, these processes are not contingent on the subtle energy fields
of the universe being stratified into rigidly defined layers. They could
also work even if the subtle fields of the universe are a smooth
continuum. In fact, given how sensitive these subtle fields are to our
thoughts, we must be very careful when trying to form set ideas about
their organization and structure. What we believe about them may in
fact help mold and create their structure.

This is perhaps why psychics disagree about whether the human
energy field is divided into layers. Psychics who believe in dearly
defined layers may actually be causing the energy field to form itself
into layers. The individual whose energy field is being observed may
also participate in this process. Brennan is very frank about this and
notes that the more one of her clients understands the difference
between the layers, the clearer and more distinct the layers of their
energy field become. She admits that the structure she sees in the energy
field is thus but one system, and others have come up with other systems.
For example, the authors of the tantras, a collection of Hindu yogic texts
written during the fourth through sixth centuries A.D., perceived only
three layers in the energy field.

There is evidence that the structures clairvoyants inadvertently create
in the energy field can be remarkably long-lived. For centuries the
ancient Hindus believed that each chakra also had a Sanskrit letter
written in its center. Japanese researcher Hiroshi Motoyama, a clinical
psychologist who has successfully developed a technique for measuring
the electrical presence of the chakras, says that he first became
interested in the chakras because his mother, a simple woman with
natural clairvoyant gifts, could see them clearly. However, for years she
was puzzled because she could see what looked like an inverted sailboat
in her heart chakra. It wasn’t until Motoyama began his own
investigations that he discovered what his mother was seeing was the
Sanskrit letter yam, the letter the ancient Hindus perceived in the heart
chakra.” 11 Some psychics, such as Dryer, say that they also see Sanskrit
letters in the chakras. Others do not. The only explanation appears to be
that psychics who see the letters are actually tuning into holographic
structures long ago imposed on the energy field by the beliefs of the
ancient Hindus.

At first glance this notion may seem strange, but it does have a

Seeing Holographically


precedent. As we have seen, one of the basic tenets of quantum physics
is that we are not discovering reality, but participating in its creation. It
may be that as we probe deeper into the levels of reality beyond the
atom, the levels where the subtle energies of the human aura appear to
lie, the participatory nature of reality becomes even more pronounced.
Thus we must be extremely cautious about saying that we have
discovered a particular structure or pattern in the human energy field,
when we may have actually created what we have found.

Mind and the Human Energy Field

It is significant that an examination of the human energy field leads one
to precisely the same conclusion Pribram made after discovering that
the brain converts sensory import into a language of frequencies. That is,
that we have two realities: one in which our bodies appear to be concrete
and possess a precise location in space and time; and one in which our
very being appears to exist primarily as a shimmering cloud of energy
whose ultimate location in space is somewhat ambiguous. This
realization brings with it some profound questions. One is, what
becomes of mind? We have been taught that our mind is a product of our
brain, but if the brain and the physical body are just holograms, the
densest part of an increasingly subtle continuum of energy fields, what
does this say about the mind? Human energy field research provides an

Recently a discovery made by neurophysiologists Benjamin Libet
and Bertram Feinstein at Mount Zion Hospital in San Francisco has
been causing a stir in the scientific community. Libet and Feinstein
measured the time it took for a touch stimulus on a patient’s skin to reach
the brain as an electrical signal. The patient was also asked to push a
button when he or she became aware of being touched. Libet and
Feinstein found that the brain registered the stimulus in 0.0001 of a
second after it occurred, and the patient pressed the button 0.1 of a
second after the stimulus was applied.

But, remarkably, the patient didn’t report being consciously aware of
either the stimulus or pressing the button for almost 0.5 second. This
meant that the decision to respond was being made by the patient’s
unconscious mind. The patient’s awareness of the action was the slow
man in the race. Even more disturbing, none of the patients



Libet and Feinstein tested were aware that their unconscious minds had
already caused them to push the button before they had consciously
decided to do so. Somehow their brains were creating the comforting
delusion that they had consciously controlled the action even though
they had not. 4 – This has caused some researchers to wonder if free will
is an illusion. Later studies have shown that one and a half seconds
before we “decide” to move one of our muscles, such as lift a finger, our
brain has already started to generate the signals necessary to accomplish
the movement. 43 Again, who is making the decision, the conscious mind
or the unconscious mind?

Hunt does such findings one better. She has discovered that the
human energy field responds to stimuli even before the brain does. She
has taken EMG readings of the energy field and EEG readings of the
brain simultaneously and discovered that when she makes a loud sound
or flashes a bright light, the EMG of the energy field registers the
stimulus before it ever shows up on the EEG. What does it mean? “I
think we have way overrated the brain as the active ingredient in the
relationship of a human to the world,” says Hunt. “It’s just a real good
computer. But the aspects of the mind that have to do with creativity,
imagination, spirituality, and all those things, I don’t see them in the
brain at all. The mind’s not in the brain. It’s in that dam field.” 44

Dryer has also noticed that the energy field responds before a person
consciously registers a response. As a consequence, instead of trying to
judge her client’s reactions by watching their facial expressions, she
keeps her eyes closed and watches how their energy fields react. “As I
speak I can see the colors change in their energy field. I can see how
they feel about what I’m saying without having to ask them. For
instance, if their field becomes foggy I know they’re not understanding
what I’m telling them,” she states. 155

If the mind is not in the brain, but in the energy field that permeates
both the brain and the physical body, this may explain why psychics
such as Dryer see so much of the content of a person’s psyche in the
field. It may also explain how my spleen, an organ not normally as-
sociated with thought, managed to have its own rudimentary form of
intelligence. Indeed, if the mind is in the field, it suggests that our
awareness, the thinking, feeling part of ourselves, may not even be
confined to the physical body, and as we will see, there is considerable
evidence to support this idea as well.

But first we must turn our attention to another issue. The solidity

Seeing Holographicallv


of the body is not the only thing that is illusory in a holographic
universe. As we have seen, Bohm believes that even time itself is not
absolute, but unfolds out of the implicate order. This suggests that the
linear division of time into past, present, and future is also just another
construct of the mind. In the next chapter we will examine the evidence
that supports this idea as well as the ramifications this view has for our
lives in the here and now.



Shamanism and similar mysterious areas of research
have gained in significance because they postulate
new ideas about mind and spirit. They speak of
things like vastly expanding the realm of conscious-
ness . . . the belief, the knowledge, and even the
experience that our physical world of the senses is a
mere illusion, a world of shadows, and that the
three-dimensional tool we call our body serves only
as a container or dwelling place for Something infi-
nitely greater and more comprehensive than that
body and which constitutes the matrix of the real life.

— Holger Kahveit Oreamtime
and fnner Space

Time Out of Mind

The “home” of the mind, as of all things, is the implicate order. At this
level, which is the fundamental plenum for the entire manifest universe,
there is no linear time. The implicate domain is atemporal; moments are
not strung together serially like beads on a string.

? — Larry Dossey

Recovering the Soul

As the man gazed off into space, the room he was in became ghostly and
transparent, and in its place materialized a scene from the distant past.
Suddenly he was in the courtyard of a palace, and before him was a
young woman, olive-skinned and very pretty. He could see her gold
jewelry around her neck, wrists, and ankles, her white translucent dress,
and her black braided hair gathered regally under a high square-shaped
tiara. As he looked at her, information about her life flooded his mind.
He knew she was Egyptian, the daughter of a prince, but not a pharaoh.
She was married. Her husband was slender and wore his hair in a
multitude of small braids that fell down on both sides of his face.

The man could also fast-forward the scene, rushing through the events
of the woman’s life as if they were no more than a movie. He saw that
she died in childbirth. He watched the lengthy and intricate steps of her
embalming, her funeral procession, the rituals that accom-




panied her being placed in her sarcophagus, and when he finished, the
images faded and the room once again came back into view.

The man’s name was Stefan Ossowiecki, a Russtan-bom Pole and one
of the century’s most gifted clairvoyants, and the date was February
14,19S5. His vision of the past had been evoked when he handled a
fragment of a petrified human foot

Ossowiecki proved so adept at psychometrizing artifacts that he
eventually came to the attention of Stanislaw Poniatowski, a professor
at the University of Warsaw and the most eminent ethnologist in Poland
at the time. Poniatowski tested Ossowiecki with a variety of flints and
other stone tools obtained from archaeological sites around the world.
Most of these Hthics, as they are called, were so nondescript that only a
trained eye could tell they had been shaped by human hands. They were
also precertified by experts so that Poniatowski knew their ages and
historical origins, information he kept carefully concealed from

It did not matter. Again and again Ossowiecki identified the objects
correctly, describing their age, the culture that had produced them, and
the geographical locations where they had been found. On several
occasions the locations Ossowiecki cited disagreed with the informa-
tion Poniatowski had written in his notes, but Poniatowski discovered
that it was always his notes that were in error, not Ossowiecki’s

Ossowiecki always worked the same. He would take the object in his
hands and concentrate until the room before him, and even his own
body, became shadowy and almost nonexistent After this transition
occurred, he would find himself looking at a three-dimensional movie
of the past He could then go anywhere he wanted in the scene and see
anything he chose. While he was gazing into the past, Ossowiecki even
moved his eyes back and forth as if the things he was describing
possessed an actual physical presence before him.

He could see the vegetation, the people, and the dwellings in which
they lived. On one occasion, after handling a stone implement from the
Magdalenian culture, a Stone Age people who flourished in France
about 15,000 to 10,000 B.C, Ossowiecki told Poniatowski that Mag-
dalenian women had very complex hair styles. At the time this seemed
absurd, but subsequent discoveries of statues of Magdalenian women
with ornate coiffures proved Ossowiecki right

Over the course of the experiments Ossowiecki offered over one
hundred such pieces of information, details about the past that at first

Time Out of Mind


seemed inaccurate, but later proved correct He said that Stone Age
peoples used oil lamps and was vindicated when excavations in
Dor-dogne, France, uncovered oils lamps of the exact size and style he
described. He made detailed drawings of the animals various peoples
hunted, the style of the huts in which they lived, and their burial
customs — assertions that were all later confirmed by archaeological
discoveries. 1

Poniatowski’s work with Ossowiecki is not unique. Norman Emerson,
a professor of anthropology at the University of Toronto and founding
vice president of the Canadian Archaeological Association, has also
investigated the use of clairvoyants in archaeological work. Emerson’s
research has centered around a truck driver named George McMullen.
Like Ossowiecki, McMullen has the ability to psychometrize objects and
use them to tune into scenes from the past McMullen can also tune into
the past simply by visiting an archaeological site. Once there, he paces
back and forth until he gets his bearings. Then he begins to describe the
people and culture that once flourished at the site. On one such occasion
Emerson watched as McMullen bounded over a pateh of bare ground,
pacing out what he said was the location of an Iroquois longhouse.
Emerson marked the area with survey pegs and six months later
uncovered the ancient structure exactly where McMullen said it would
be. 3

Although Emerson began as a skeptic, his work with McMullen has
made him a believer. In 1973, at an annual conference of Canada’s
leading archaeologists, he stated, “It is my conviction that I have
received knowledge about archaeological artifacts and archaeological
sites from a psychic informant who relates this information to me
without any evidence of the conscious use of reasoning. ” He concluded
his talk by saying that he felt McMullen’s demonstrations opened “a
whole new vista” in archaeology, and research into the further use of
psychics in archaeological investigations should be given “first prior-
ity.” 3

Indeed, retrocognition, or the ability of certain individuals to shift the
focus of their attention and literally gaze back into the past, has been
confirmed repeatedly by researchers. In a series of experiments
conducted in the 1960s, W. H. C. Tenhaeff, the director of the
Parapsy-chological Institute of the State University of Utrecht, and
Marius Valkhoff, dean of the faculty of arts at the University of
Witwaters-rand, Johannesburg, South Africa, found that the great Dutch
psychic, Gerard Croiset, could psychometrize even the smallest



of bone and accurately describe its past. 4 Dr. Lawrence LeShan, a New
York clinical psychologist, and another skeptic-turned-believer, has
conducted similar experiments with the noted American psychic, Eileen
Garrett. At the 1961 annua) meeting of the American Anthropological
Association, archaeologist Clarence W. Weiant revealed that he would
not have made his famous Tres Zapotes discovery, universally
considered to be one of the most important Middle American
archaeological finds ever made, were it not for the assistance of a
psychic. 6

Stephan A. Schwartz, a former editorial staff member of National
Geographic magazine and a member of MITs Secretary of Defense
Discussion Group on Innovation, Technology, and Society, believes that
retrocognition is not only real, but will eventually precipitate a shift in
scientific reality as profound as the shifts that followed the discoveries
of Copernicus and Darwin. Schwartz feels so strongly about the subject
that he has written a comprehensive history of the partnership between
clairvoyants and archaeologists entitled The Secret Vaults of Time. “For
three-quarters of a century psychic archaeology has been a reality,” says
Schwartz. “This new approach has done much to demonstrate that the
time and space framework so crucial to the Grand Material world-view
is by no means as absolute a construct as most scientists believe.” 7

The Past as Hologram

Such abilities suggest that the past is not lost, but still exists in some
form accessible to human perception. Our normal view of the universe
makes no allowance for such a state of affairs, but the holographic
model does. Bohm’s notion that the flow of time is the product of a
constant series of unfoldings and enfoldings suggests that as the present
enfolds and becomes part of the past, it does not cease to exist, but
simply returns to the cosmic storehouse of the implicate. Or as Bohm
puts it, “The past is active in the present as a kind of implicate order.” 8
If, as Bohm suggests, consciousness also has its source in the impli-
cate, this means that the human mind and the holographic record of the
past already exist in the same domain, are, in a manner of speaking,
already neighbors. Thus, a shift in the focus of one’s attention

Time Out of Mbd


may be all that is needed to access the past. Clairvoyants such as
McMulIen and Ossowiecki may simply be individuals who have an
innate knack for making this shift, but again, as with so many of the
other extraordinary human abilities we have looked at, the holographic
idea suggests that the talent is latent in all of us.

A metaphor for the way the past is stored in the implicate can also be
found in the hologram. If each phase of an activity, say a woman
blowing a soap bubble, is recorded as a series of successive images in a
multiple-image hologram, each image becomes as a frame in a movie. If
the hologram is a “white light” hologram — a piece of holographic film
whose image can be seen by the naked eye and does not need laser light
to become visible — when a viewer walks by the film and changes the
angle of his or her perception, he/she will see what amounts to a
three-dimensional motion picture of the woman blowing the soap bub-
ble. In other words, as the different images unfold and enfold, they will
seem to flow together and present an illusion of movement.

A person who is unfamiliar with holograms might mistakenly assume
that the various stages in the blowing of the soap bubble are transitory and
once perceived can never be viewed again, but this is not true. The entire
activity is always recorded in the hologram, and it is the viewer’s changing
perspective that provides the illusion that it is unfolding in time. The
holographic theory suggests that the same 4 is true of our own past. Instead
of fading into oblivion, it too remains recorded in the cosmic hologram
and can always be accessed once again.

Another suggestively hologramlike feature of the retrocognitive
experience is the three-dimensionality of the scenes that are accessed.
For instance, psychic Rich, who can also psychometrize objects, says
she knows what Ossowiecki meant when he said that the images he saw
were as three-dimensional and real, even more real, than the room in
which he was sitting. “It’s as if the scene takes over,” says Rich. “It’s
dominant, and once it starts to unfold I actually become a part of it. It’s
like being in two places at once. I’m aware that I’m sitting in a room, but
I’m also in the scene.” 8

Similarly holographic is the nonlocal nature of the ability. Psychics
are able to access the past of a particular archaeological site both when
they are at the site and when they are many miles removed. In other
words, the record of the past does not appear to be stored at any one
location, but like the information in a hologram, it is nonlocal and can
be accessed from any point in the space-time framework. The



cal ruins — burial mounds, standing stones, crumbling sixth-century
fortresses, and so on — and participated in activities associated with
bygone times. Evans- Wentz interviewed witnesses who had seen fairies
that looked like men in Elizabethan dress engaging in hunts, fairies that
walked in ghostly processions to and from the remains of old forts, and
fairies that rang bells while standing in the ruins of ancient churches.
One activity of which the fairies seemed inordinately fond was waging
war. In his book The Fairy-Faitk in Celtic Countries Evans-Wentz
presents the testimony of dozens of individuals who claimed to see these
spectral conflicts, moonlit meadows thronged with men battling in
medieval armor, or desolate fens covered with soldiers in colored
uniforms. Sometimes these frays were eerily silent. Sometimes they
were full-fledged dins; and, perhaps most haunting of all, sometimes
they could only be heard but not seen.

From this, Evans-Wentz concluded that at least some of the phe-
nomena his witnesses were interpreting as fairies were actually some
kind of afterimage of events that had taken place in the past. “Nature
herself has a memory,” he theorized. “There is some indefinable psychic
element in the earth’s atmosphere upon which all human and physical
actions or phenomena are photographed or impressed. Under certain
inexplicable conditions, normal persons who are not seers may observe
Nature’s mental records like pictures cast upon a screen — often like
moving pictures.” 14

As for why encounters with fairies were becoming less frequent, a
remark made by one of Evans-Wentz’ s respondents provides a clue. The
respondent was an elderly gentleman named John Davies living on the
Isle of Man, and after describing numerous sightings of the good people,
he stated, “Before education came into the island more people could see
the fairies; now very few people can see them.'” 5 Since “education” no
doubt included an anathema against believing in fairies, Davies’s
remark suggests that it was a change in attitude that caused the
widespread retrocognitive abilities of the Manx people to atrophy. Once
again this underscores the enormous power our beliefs have in
determining which of our extraordinary potentials we manifest and
which we do not

But whether our beliefs allow us to see these hologramlike movies of
the past or cause our brains to edit them out, the evidence suggests that
they exist nonetheless. Nor are such experiences limited to Celtic
countries. There are reports of witnesses seeing phantom soldiers
dressed in ancient Hindu costumes in India. 16 In Hawaii, such ghostly

Time Out of Mind


displays are well known and books on the islands are filled with ac-
counts of individuals who have seen phantom processions of Hawaiian
warriors in feather cloaks marching along with war clubs and torches.’ 7
Sightings of spectral armies fighting equally phantasmal battles are
even mentioned in ancient Assyrian texts. 18

Occasionally historians are able to recognize the event being replayed.
At four in the morning on August 4,1951, two English women
vacationing in the seaside village of Puys, France, were awakened by
the sound of gunfire. They raced to the window but were shocked to
find that the village and the sea beyond were calm and devoid of any
activity that might account for what they were hearing. The British
Society for Psychical Research investigated and discovered that the
women’s chronology of events mirrored exactly military records of a
raid the Allies had made against the Germans at Puys on August 19,
1942. The women, it seemed, had heard the sound of a slaughter that
had taken place nine years earlier. 19

Although the dark intensity of such events gives them a higher profile
in the holographic landscape, we must not forget that contained within
the shimmering holographic record of the past are all the joys of the
human race as well. It is, in essence, a library of all that ever was, and
learning to tap into this dazzling and infinite treasure-trove on a more
massive and systematic scale could expand our knowledge of both
ourselves and the universe in ways we have not yet dared dream. The
day may come when we can manipulate reality like the crystal in
Bohm’s analogy, causing what is real and what is invisible to shift
kaleidoscopic ally and calling up images of the past with the same ease
that we now call up a program on our computer. But even this is not all
that a more holographic understanding of time may offer.

The Holographic Future

As disconcerting as having access to the entire past is, it pales beside the
notion that the future is also accessible in the cosmic hologram. Still,
there is an enormous body of evidence that proves at least some future
events are as easy to see as past events.

This has been amply demonstrated in literally hundreds of studies. In
the 1930s J. B. and Louisa Rhine discovered that volunteers could guess
what cards would be drawn randomly from a deck with a sue-



Time Out of Mind


cess rate that was better than chance by odds of three million to one.” In
the 1970s Helmut Schmidt, a physicist at Boeing Aircraft in Seattle,
Washington, invented a device that enabled him to test whether people
could predict random subatomic events. In repeated tests with three
volunteers and over sixty thousand trials, he obtained results that were
one billion to one against chance. 21

In his work at the Dream Laboratory at Maimonides Medical Center,
Montague Uliman, along with psychologist Stanley Krippner and re-
searcher Charles Honorton, produced compelling evidence that accu-
rate precognitive information can also be obtained in dreams. In their
study, volunteers were asked to spend eight consecutive nights at the
sleep laboratory, and each night they were asked to try to dream about a
picture that would be chosen at random the next day and shown to them.
Uliman and his colleagues hoped to get one success out of eight, but
found that some subjects could score as many as five “hits” out of eight.

For example, after waking, one volunteer said that he had dreamed of
“a large concrete building” from which a “patient” was trying to escape.
The patient had a white coat on like a doctor’s coat and had gotten only
”as far as the archway.” The painting chosen at random the next day
turned out to be Van Gogh’s Hospital Corridor at SL Remy, a
watercolor depicting a lone patient standing at the end of a bleak and
massive hallway and quickly exiting through a door beneath an

In their remote-viewing experiments at Stanford Research Institute,
Puthoff and Targ found that, in addition to being able to psychically
describe remote locations that experimenters were visiting in the
present, test subjects could also describe locations experimenters would
be visiting in the future, before the locations had even been decided
upon. In one instance, for example, an unusually talented subject named
Hella Hammid, a photographer by vocation, was asked to describe the
spot Puthoff would be visiting one-half hour hence. She concentrated
and said she could see him entering “a black iron triangle.” The triangle
was “bigger than a man/’ and although she did not know precisely what
it was, she could hear a rhythmic squeaking sound occurring “about
once a second.”

Ten minutes before she did this, Puthoff had set out on a half -hour
drive in the Menlo Park and Palo Alto areas. At the end of the half hour,
and well after Hammid had recorded her perception of the black iron
triangle, Puthoff took out ten sealed envelopes containing ten

different target locations. Using a random number generator, he chose
one at random. Inside was the address of a small park about six miles
from the laboratory. He drove to the park, and when he got there he
found a children’s swing — the black iron triangle — and walked into its
midst. When he sat down in the swing it squeaked rhythmically as it
swung back and forth. 23

Puthoff and Targ’s precognitive remote -viewing findings have been
duplicated by numerous laboratories around the world, including Jahn
and Dunne’s research facility at Princeton. Indeed, in 334 formal trials
Jahn and Dunne found that volunteers were able to come up with
accurate precognitive information 62 percent of the time. 24

Even more dramatic are the results of the so-called “chair tests,” a
famous series of experiments devised by Croiset. First, the experi-
menter would randomly select a chair from the seating plan for an
upcoming public event in a large hall or auditorium. The hall could be
located in any city in the world and only events that did not have
reserved seating qualified. Then, without telling Croiset the name or
location of the hall, or the nature of the event, the experimenter would
ask the Dutch psychic to describe who would be sitting in the seat
during the evening in question.

Over the course of a twenty -five -year period, numerous investigators
in both Europe and America put Croiset through the rigors of the chair
test and found that he was almost always capable of giving an accurate
and detailed description of the person who would be sitting in the chair,
including describing their gender, facial features, dress, occupation, and
even incidents from their past.

For instance, on January 6, 1969, in a study conducted by Dr. Jule
Eisenbud, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Colo-
rado Medical School, Croiset was told that a chair had been ehosen for an
event that would take place on January 23,1969. Croiset, who was in
Utrecht, Holland, at the time, told Eisenbud that the person who would
sit in the chair would be a man five feet nine inches in height who
brushed his black hair straight back, had a gold tooth in his lower jaw, a
scar on his big toe, who worked in both science and industry, and
sometimes got his lab coat stained by a greenish chemical. On January
23 , 1 969, the man who sat down in the chair, which was in an auditorium
in Denver, Colorado, fit Croiset’s description in every way but one. He
was not five feet nine, but five feet nine and three-quarters. 25

The list goes on and on.



Time Out of Mind


almost universally stress how important dreaming is in divining the
future. Even our most ancient writings pay homage to the premonitory
power of dreams, as is evidenced in the biblical account of Pharaoh’s
dream of seven fat and seven lean cows. The antiquity of such traditions
indicates that the tendency of premonitions to occur in dreams is due to
more than just our current skeptical attitude toward precognition. The
proximity the unconscious mind has to the atem-poral realm of the
implicate may also play a role. Because our dreaming self is deeper in
the psyche than our conscious self — and thus closer to the primal ocean
in which past, present, and future become one — it may be easier for it to
access information about the future.

Whatever the reason, it should come as no surprise that other methods
for accessing the unconscious can also produce precognitive information.
For example, in the 1 960s Karlis Osis and hypnotist J. Fahler found that
hypnotized subjects scored significantly higher on precognition tests
than nonhypnotized subjects. 38 Other studies have also confirmed the
ESP-enhancing effects of hypnosis. 37 However, no amount of dry
statistical data has the impact of an example from real life. In his book
The Future Is Now: The Significance of Precognition, Arthur Osborn
records the results of a hypnosis-precognition experiment involving the
French actress Irene Muza. After being hypnotized and asked if she
could see her future, Muza replied, “My career will be short: I dare not
say what my end will be: it will be terrible.”

Startled, the experimenters decided not to tell Muza what she had
reported and gave her a posthypnotic suggestion to forget everything
she had said. When she awakened from her trance she had no memory
of what she had predicted for herself. Even if she had known, it would
not have caused the type of death she suffered. A few months later her
hairdresser accidentally spilled some mineral spirits on a lighted stove,
causing Muza’s hair and clothing to be set on fire. Within seconds she
was engulfed in flames and died in a hospital a few hours later. 38

Hololeaps of Faith

The events that befell Irene Muza raise an important question. If Muza
had known about the fate she had predicted for herself, would

she have been able to avoid it? Put another way, is the future frozen and
completely predetermined, or can it be changed? At first blush, the
existence of precognitive phenomena seems to indicate that the former
jg the case, but this would be a very disturbing state of affairs. If the
future is a hologram whose every detail is already fixed, it means that
w e have no free will. We are all just puppets of destiny moving mind-
lessly through a script that has already been written.

Fortunately the evidence overwhelmingly indicates that this is not the
case. The literature is filled with examples of people who were able to
use their precognitive glimpses of the future to avoid disasters,
instances in which individuals correctly foresaw the crash of a plane
and avoided death by not getting on, or had a vision of their children
being drowned in a flood and moved them out of harm’s way just in the
nick of time. There are nineteen documented cases of people who had
precognitive glimpses of the sinking of the Titanic — some were
experienced by passengers who paid attention to their premonitions and
survived, some were experienced by passengers who ignored their
forebodings and drowned, and some were experienced by individuals
who were not in either of these two categories. 39

Such incidents strongly suggest that the future is not set, but is plastic
and can be changed. But this view also brings with it a problem. If the
future is still in a state of flux, what is Croiset tapping into when he
describes the individual who will sit down in a particular chair
seventeen days hence? How can the future both exist and not exist?

Loye provides a possible answer. He believes that reality is a giant
hologram, and in it the past, present, and future are indeed fixed, at least
up to a point The rub is that it is not the only hologram. There are many
such holographic entities floating in the timeless and spaceless waters
of the implicate, jostling and swimming around one another like so
many amoebas. ” Such holographic entities could also be visualized as
parallel worlds, parallel universes,” says Loye.

Thus, the future of any given holographic universe is predetermined,
and when a person has a precognitive glimpse of the future, they are
tuning into the future of that particular hologram only . But like amoebas,
these holograms also occasionally swallow and engulf each other,
melding and bifurcating like the protoplasmic globs of energy that they
really are. Sometimes these jostlings jolt us and are responsible for the
premonitions that from time to time engulf us. And when we act upon a
premonition and appear to alter the future, what We are really doing is
leaping from one hologram to another. Loye



Time Out of Mind


calls these intra holographic leaps “hololeaps” and feels that they are
what provides us with our true capacity for both insight and freedom. 40

Bohm sums up the same situation in a slightly different manner.
“When people dream of accidents correctly and do not take the plane or
ship, it is not the actual future that they were seeing. It was merely
something in the present which is implicate and moving toward making
that future. In fact, the future they saw differed from the actual future
because they altered it. Therefore I think it’s more plausible to say that,
if these phenomena exist, there’s an anticipation of the future in the
implicate order in the present. As they used to say, coming events cast
their shadows in the present Their shadows are being cast deep in the
implicate order.”” 1

Bohm’s and Loye’s descriptions seem to be two different ways of
trying to express the same thing — a view of the future as a hologram that
is substantive enough for us to perceive it, but malleable enough to be
susceptible to change. Others have used still different words to sum up
what appears to be the same basic thought. Cordero describes the future
as a hurricane that is beginning to form and gather momentum,
becoming more concrete and unavoidable as it approaches. 42 Ingo Swann,
a gifted psychic who has produced impressive results in various studies,
including Puthoff and Targ’s remote-vie wing research, speaks of the

future as composed of “crystallizing possibilities. The Hawaiian

kahunas, widely esteemed for their precognitive powers, also speak of
the future as fluid, but in the process of “crystallizing,” and believe that
great world events are crystallized furthest in advance, as are the most
important events in a person’s life, such as marriage, accidents, and
death. 44

The numerous premonitions that are now known to have preceded
both the Kennedy assassination and the Civil War (even George Wash-
ington had a precognitive vision of a future civil war somehow involving
“Africa,” the issue that all men are “brethren,” and the word Union “)
seem to corroborate this kahuna belief.

Loye’s notion that there are many separate holographic futures and
we choose which events are going to manifest and which are not by
leaping from one hologram to another carries with it another implica-
tion. Choosing one holographic future over another is essentially the
same as creating the future. As we have seen, there is a good deal of
evidence suggesting that consciousness plays a significant role in
creating the here and now. But if the mind can stray beyond the

poundaries of the present and occasionally stalk the misty landscape of
the future, do we have a hand in creating future events as well? Put
another way, are the vagaries of life truly random, or do we play a role in
literally sculpting our own destiny? Remarkably, there is some
intriguing evidence that the latter may be the case.

The Shadowy Stuff of the Soul

Dr. Joel Whitton, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto
Medical School, has also used hypnosis to study what people
unconsciously know about themselves. However, instead of asking
them about their future, Whitton, who is an expert in clinical hypnosis
and also holds a degree in neurobiology, asks them about their past, their
distant past to be exact. For the last several decades Whitton has quietly
and without fanfare been gathering evidence suggestive of

Reincarnation is a difficult subject, for so much silliness has been
presented about it that many people dismiss it out of hand. Most do not
realize that in addition to (and one might even say in spite of) the
sensational claims of celebrities and the stories of reincarnated
Cleopatras that garner most of the media attention, there is a good deal
of serious research being done on reincarnation. In the last several
decades a small but growing number of highly credentialed researchers
has compiled an impressive body of evidence on the subject Whitton is
one of these researchers.

The evidence does not prove that reincarnation exists, nor is it the
intention of this book to make such an argument. In fact, it is difficult to
imagine what might constitute perfect proof of reincarnation. Rather,
the findings that will be touched upon here are offered only as intriguing
possibilities and because they are relevant to our current discussion.
Thus, they deserve our open-minded consideration.

The main thrust of Whitton’s hypnosis research is based on a simple
and startling fact. When individuals are hypnotized, they often re-
member what appear to be memories of previous existences. Studies
nave shown that over 90 percent of all hypnotizable individuals are able
to recall these apparent memories. 46 The phenomenon is widely
A cognized, even by skeptics. For example, the psychiatry textbook
Trauma, Trance and Transformation warns fledgling hypnothera-



Time Out of Mind


pists not to be surprised if such memories surface spontaneously in their
hypnotized patients. The author of the text rejects the idea of rebirth but
does note that such memories can have remarkable healing
potential nonetheless.” 7

The meaning of this phenomenon is, of course, hotly debated. Many
researchers argue that such memories are fantasies or fabrications of the
unconscious mind, and there is no doubt that this is sometimes the case,
especially if the hypnotic session or “regression” is conducted by an
unskilled hypnotist who does not know the proper questioning
techniques required to safeguard against eliciting fantasies. But there
are also numerous cases on record in which individuals have, under the
guidance of skilled professionals, produced memories that do not appear
to be fantasies. The evidence assembled by Whitton falls into this

To conduct his research, Whitton gathered together a core group of
roughly thirty people. These included individuals from all walks of life,
from truck drivers to computer scientists, some of whom believed in
reincarnation and some of whom did not. He then hypnotized them
individually and spent literally thousands of hours recording everything
they had to say about their alleged previous existences.

Even in its broad strokes the information was fascinating. One
striking aspect was the degree of agreement between the subjects’
experiences. All reported numerous past lives, some as many as twenty
to twenty -five, although a practical limit was reached when Whitton
regressed them to what he calls their “caveman existences,” when one
lifetime became indistinguishable from the next. 48 All reported that
gender was not specific to the soul, and many had lived at least one life
as the opposite sex. And all reported that the purpose of life was to
evolve and learn, and that multiple existences facilitated this process.

Whitton also found evidence that strongly suggested the experiences
were actual past lives. One unusual feature was the ability the memories
had to explain a wide range of seemingly unrelated events and
experiences in the subjects’ current lives. For example, one man, a
psychologist born and raised in Canada, had possessed an inexplicable
British accent as a child. He also had an irrational fear of breaking his
leg, a phobia of air travel, a terrible nail-biting problem, an obsessive
fascination with torture, and as a teenager had had a brief and enigmatic
vision of being in a room with a Nazi officer, shortly after operating the
pedals of a car during a driving test. Under hypnosis the

jdan recalled being a British pilot during World War II. While on a
mission over Germany his plane was hit by a shower of bullets, one of
which penetrated the fuselage and broke his leg. This in turn caused pirn
to lose control of the plane’s foot pedals, forcing him to crash-land, jle
was subsequently captured by the Nazis, tortured for information py
having his nails pulled out, and died a short time later. 48

Many of the subjects also experienced profound psychological and
physical healings as a result of the traumatic past-life memories they
unearthed, and gave uncannily accurate historical details about the
times in which they had lived. Some even spoke languages unknown to
them. While reliving an apparent past life as a Viking, one man, a
thirty-seven-year-old behavioral scientist, shouted words that linguistic
authorities later identified as Old Norse. 50 After being regressed to an
ancient Persian lifetime, the same man began to write in a spidery,
Arabic-style script that an expert in Near Eastern languages identified
as an authentic representation of Sassanid Pahlavi, a long-extinct
Mesopotamian tongue that nourished between A.D. 226 and 651. sl

But Whitton’s most remarkable discovery came when he regressed
subjects to the interim between lives, a dazzling, light-filled realm in
which there was “no such thing as time or space as we know it.” 52
According to his subjects, part of the purpose of this realm was to allow
them to plan their next life, to literally sketch out the important events
and circumstances that would befall them in the future. But this process
was not simply some fairy-tale exercise in wish fulfillment. Whitton
found that when individuals were in the between-life realm, they entered
an unusual state of consciousness in which they were acutely self-aware
and had a heightened moral and ethical sense. In addition, they no
longer possessed the ability to rationalize away any of their faults and
misdeeds, and saw themselves with total honesty. To distinguish it from
our normal everyday consciousness, Whitton calls this intensely
conscientious state of mind “metacon-aciousness.”

Thus, when subjects planned their next life, they did so with a sense
Qf moral obligation. They would choose to be reborn with people whom
they had wronged in a previous life so they would have the opportunity
to make amends for their actions. They planned pleasant encounters
with “soul mates,” individuals with whom they had built a loving a nd
mutually beneficial relationship over many lifetimes; and they
scheduled “accidental” events to fulfill still other lessons and pur-



Time Out of Mind


poses. One man said that as he planned his next life he visualized “a sort
of clockwork instrument into which you could insert certain parts in
order for specific consequences to follow,” 68

These consequences were not always pleasant. After being regressed
to a metaconscious state, a woman who had been raped when she was
thirty-seven revealed that she had actually planned the event before she
had come into this incarnation. As she explained, it had been necessary
for her to experience a tragedy at that age in order to force her to change
her “entire soul complexion” and thus break through to a deeper and
more positive understanding of the meaning of life. 5 ” 1 Another subject,
a man afflicted with a serious and life-threatening kidney disease,
disclosed that he had chosen the illness to punish himself for a past-life
transgression. However, he also revealed that dying from the kidney
disease was not part of his script, and before he had come into this life
he had also arranged to encounter someone or something that would
help him remember this fact and hence enable him to heal both his guilt
and his body. True to his word, after he started his sessions with Whitton
he experienced a near-miraculous complete recovery. ss

Not all of Whitton’s subjects were so eager to learn about the future
their metaconscious selves had laid out for them. Several censored their
own memories and asked Whitton to please give them posthypnotic
instructions not to remember anything that they had said during trance.
As they explained, they did not want to be tempted to tamper with the
script their metaconscious selves had written for them. *

This is an astounding idea. Is it possible that our unconscious mind is
not only aware of the rough outline of our destiny, but actually steers us
toward its fulfillment? Whitton’s research is not the only evidence that
this may be the case. In a statistical study of 28 serious U.S. railroad
accidents, parapsychoiogist William Cox found that significantly fewer
people took trains on accident days than on the same day in previous
weeks/’ 7

Cox’s finding suggests that we all may be constantly unconsciously
precognizing the future and making decisions based on that information:
some of us opting to avoid mishap, and perhaps some — iike the woman
who chose to experience a personal tragedy and the man who elected to
endure a kidney disease — choosing to experience negative situations to
fulfill other unconscious designs and purposes. “Carefully or
haphazardly, we choose our earthly circumstances,” says Whitton. “The
message of metaconsciousness is that the life situation

of every human being is neither random nor inappropriate. Seen objec-
tively from the interlife, every human experience is simply another
lesson in the cosmic classroom.” 58

It is important to note that the existence of such unconscious agendas
does not mean that our lives are rigidly predestined and all fates
unavoidable. The fact that many of Whitton’s subjects asked not to
remember what they said under hypnosis implies again that the future is
only roughly outlined and still subject to change.

Whitton is not the only reincarnation researcher who has uncovered
evidence that our unconscious has more of a hand in our lives than we
may realize. Another is Dr. Ian Stevenson, a professor of psychiatry at
the University of Virginia Medical School. Instead of using hypnosis
Stevenson interviews young children who have spontaneously re-
membered apparent previous existences. He has spent more than thirty
years in this pursuit and has collected and analyzed thousands of cases
from all over the globe.

According to Stevenson, spontaneous past-life recall is
relatively -common among children, so common that the number of
cases that seem worth considering far exceeds his staffs ability to
investigate them. Generally children are between the ages of two and
four when they start talking about their “other life,” and frequently they
remember dozens of particulars, including their name, the names of
family members and friends, where they lived, what their house looked
like, what they did for a living, how they died, and even obscure
information such as where they hid money before they died and, in
cases involving murder, sometimes even who killed them. 89

Indeed, frequently their memories are so detailed Stevenson is able to
track down the identity of their previous personality and verify virtually
everything they have said. He has even taken children to the area in
which their past incarnation lived, and watched as they navigated
effortlessly through strange neighborhoods and correctly identified their
former house, belongings, and past-life relatives and friends.

Like Whitton, Stevenson has gathered an enormous amount of data
suggestive of reincarnation, and to date has published six volumes on
his findings. 60 And like Whitton, he also has found evidence that the
unconscious plays a far greater role in our makeup and destiny than we
have hitherto suspected.

He has corroborated Whitton’s finding that we are frequently reborn
with individuals we have known in previous existences, and that the
guiding force behind our choices is often affection or a sense of

21 S


Time Out of Mind


guilt or indebtedness. He agrees that personal responsibility, not
chance, is the arbiter of our fate. He has found that although a person’s
material conditions can vary greatly from one life to the next, their
moral conduct, interests, aptitudes, and attitudes remain the same.
Individuals who were criminals in their previous existence tend to be
drawn to criminal behavior again; people who were generous and kind
continue to be generous and kind, and so on. From this Stevenson
concludes that it is not the outward trappings of life that matter, but the
inner ones, the joys, sorrows, and “inner growths” of the personality,
that appear to be most important

Most significant of all, he found no compelling evidence of “retribu-
tive karma,” or any indication that we are cosmically punished for our
sins. “There is then — if we judge by the evidence of the cases — no
external judge of our conduct and no being who shifts us from life to life
according to our deserts. If this world is (in Keats’s phrase) ‘a vale of
soul-making,’ we are the makers of our own souls,” states Stevenson. 62

Stevenson has also uncovered a phenomenon that did not turn up in
Whitton’s study, a discovery that provides even more dramatic evidence
of the power the unconscious mind has to sculpt and influence our life
circumstances. He has found that a person’s previous incarnation can
apparently affect the very shape and structure of their current physical
body. He has discovered, for example, that Burmese children who
remember previous lives as British or American Air Force pilots shot
down over Burma during World War II all have fairer hair and
complexions than their siblings. 63

He has also found instances in which distinctive facial features, foot
deformities, and other characteristics have carried over from one life to
the next. 64 Most numerous among these are physical injuries carrying
over as scars or birthmarks. In one case, a boy who remembered being
murdered in his former life by having his throat slit still had a long
reddish mark resembling a scar across his neck. 65 In another, a boy who
remembered committing suicide by shooting himself in the head in his
past incarnation still had two scarlike birthmarks that lined up perfectly
along the bullet’s trajectory, one where the bullet had entered and one
where it had exited. 6 * And in another, a boy had a birthmark resembling
a surgical scar complete with a line of red marks resembling stitch
wounds, in the exact location where his previous personality had had



In fact, Stevenson has gathered hundreds of such cases and is cur-

rently compiling a four- volume study of the phenomenon. In some of
the cases he has even been able to obtain hospital and/or autopsy reports
of the deceased personality and show that such injuries not only
occurred, but were in the exact location of the present birthmark or
deformity. He feels that such marks not only provide some of the
strongest evidence in favor of reincarnation, but also suggest the
existence of some kind of intermediate nonphysical body that functions
as a carrier of these attributes between one life and the next He states, “It
seems to me that the imprint of wounds on the previous personality must
be carried between lives on some kind of an extended body which in turn
acts as a template for the production on a new physical body of
birthmarks and deformities that correspond to the wounds on the body
of the previous personality .’ ?SB

Stevenson’s theorized “template body” echoes Tiller’s assertion that
the human energy field is a holographic template that guides the form
and structure of the physical body. Put another way, it is a kind of
three-dimensional blueprint around which the physical body forms.
Similarly, his findings regarding birthmarks add further support to the
idea that we are at heart just images, holographic constructs, created by

Stevenson has also noted that although his research suggests that we are
the creators of our own lives and, to a certain extent, our own bodies, our
participation in this process is so passive as to be almost involuntary.
Deep strata of the psyche appear to be involved in these choices, strata
that are much more in touch with the implicate. Or as,-Stevenson puts it,
“Levels of mental activity far deeper than those that regulate the digestion
of our supper in our stomach [and] our ordinary breathing must govern
these processes.” 09

As unorthodox as many of Stevenson’s conclusions are, his reputation
as a careful and thorough investigator has gained him respect in some
unlikely quarters. His findings have been published in such dis-
tinguished scientific periodicals as the American Journal ofPsyckia-‘ r V,
the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, and the International
Journal of Comparative Sociology. And in a review of one of his works
the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association stated that
he has “painstakingly and unemotionally collected a A tailed series of
cases in which the evidence for reincarnation is oimcult to understand
on any other grounds. … He has placed on Word a large amount of data
that cannot be ignored.” 70



Time Out of Mind


Thought as Builder

As with so many of the “discoveries” we have looked at, the idea that
some deeply unconscious and even spiritual part of us can reach across
the boundaries of time and is responsible for our destiny can also be
found in many shamanic traditions and other sources. According to the
Batak people of Indonesia, everything a person experiences is deter-
mined by his or her soul, or tondi, which reincarnates from one body to
the next and is a medium capable of reproducing not only the behavior,
but the physical attributes of the person’s former self. 71 The Ojibway
Indians also believed a person’s Me is scripted by an invisible spirit or
soul and is laid out in a manner that promotes growth and development.
If a person dies without completing all the lessons they need to learn,
their spirit body returns and is reborn in another physical body. 73

The kahunas call this invisible aspect the aumakua, or “high self.”
Like Whitton’s metaconsciousness, it is the unconscious portion of a
person that can see the parts of the future that are crystallized, or “set.” It
is also the part of us that is responsible for creating our destiny, but it is
not alone in this process. Like many of the researchers mentioned in this
book, the kahunas believed that thoughts are things and are composed of
a subtle energetic substance they called kino mea, or “shadowy body
stuff.” Hence, our hopes, fears, plans, worries, guilts, dreams, and
imaginings do not vanish after leaving our mind, but are turned into
thought forms, and these, too, become some of the rough strands from
which the high self weaves our future.

Most people are not in charge of their own thoughts, said the kahunas,
and constantly bombard their high self with an uncontrolled and
contradictory mixture of plans, wishes, and fears. This confuses the high
self and is why most people’s lives appear to be equally haphazard and
uncontrolled. Powerful kahunas who were in open communication with
their high selves were said to be able to help a person remake his or her
future. Similarly, it was considered extremely important that people take
time out at frequent intervals to think about their lives and visualize in
concrete terms what they wished to happen to themselves. By doing this
the kahunas asserted that people can more consciously control the
events that befall them and make their own future. Ta

In an idea that is reminiscent of Tiller and Stevenson’s notion of a

s ubtle intermediary body, the kahunas believed this shadowy body stuff
also forms a template upon which the physical body is molded. Again it
was said that kahunas who were in extraordinary attunement vrith their
high self could sculpt and reform the shadowy body stuff, and hence the
physical body, of another person and this was how miraculous healings
were effected. 74 This view also provides an interesting parallel to some
of our own conclusions as to why thoughts and images have such a
powerful impact on health.

The tantric mystics of Tibet referred to the “stuff” of thoughts as tsal
and held that every mental action produced waves of this mysterious
energy. They believed the entire universe is a product of the mind and is
created and animated by the collective tsal of all beings. Most people
are unaware that they possess this power, said the Tantrists, because the
average human mind functions “like a small puddle isolated from the
great ocean.” Only great yogis skilled at contacting the deeper levels of
the mind were said to be able consciously to utilize such forces, and one
of the things they did to achieve this goal was to visualize repeatedly the
desired creation. Tibetan tantric texts are filled with visualization
exercises, or “sadhanas,” designed for such purposes, and monks of
some sects, such as the Kargyupa, would spend as long as seven years in
complete solitude, in a cave or a sealed room, perfecting their
visualization abilities. 75

The twelfth-century Persian Sufis also stressed the importance of
visualization in altering and reshaping one’s destiny, and called the
subtle matter of thought alam almithal. Like many clairvoyants,
they believed that human beings possess a subtle body controlled by
chakralike energy centers. They also held that reality is divided into
a series of subtler planes of being, or Hadarat, and that the plane of
being directly adjacent to this one was a kind of template reality in
which the alam almithal of one’s thoughts formed into idea-images,
which in turn eventually determined the course of one’s life. The Sufis
also added a twist of their own. They felt the heart chakra, or himma,
was the agent responsible for this process, and that control of the
heart chakra was therefore a prerequisite for controlling one’s des
tiny. 76

Edgar Cayce also spoke of thoughts as tangible things, a finer form
°f matter and, when he was in trance, repeatedly told his clients that
their thoughts created their destiny and that “thought is the builder.”
n has view, the thinking process is like a spider constantly spinning,



Time Out of Mind


constantly adding to its web. Every moment of our lives we are creating
the images and patterns that give our future energy and shape, said
Cayce. TT

Paramahansa Yogananda advised people to visualize the future they
desired for themselves and charge it with the “energy of concentration.”
As he put it, “Proper visualization by the exercise of concentration and
willpower enables us to materialize thoughts, not only as dreams or
visions in the mental realm, but also as experiences in the material
realm.” 78

Indeed, such ideas can be found in a wide range of disparate sources.
“We are what we think,” said the Buddha. “All that we are arises with
our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world.” 79 “As a man acts,
so does he become. As a man’s desire is, so is his destiny,” states the
Hindu pre-Christian Erihadaranyaka Upani-shad. w “All things in the
world of Nature are not controlled by Fate for the soul has a principle of
its own,” said the fourth-century Greek

philosopher lamblicbus. 81 “Ask and it will be given you If ye have

faith, nothing shall be impossible unto you,” states the Bible. 82 And,
“The destiny of a person is connected with those things he himself
creates and does,” wrote Rabbi Steinsaltz in the kabbalistic
Thirteen-Petaied Rose. *

An Indication of Something Deeper

Even today the idea that our thoughts create our destiny is still very
much in the air. It is the subject of best-selling self-help books such as
Shakti Gawain’s Creative Visualization and Louise L. Hay’s You Can
Heal Your Life. Hay, who says she cured herself of cancer by changing
her mental patterning, gives hugely successful workshops on her
techniques. It is the main philosophy inherent in many popular
“channeled” works such as A Course in Miracles and Jane Roberts’s
Seth books.

It is also being embraced by some eminent psychologists. Jean
Houston, a past president of the Association for Humanistic Psychology
and current Director of the Foundation for Mind Research in Pomona,
New York, discusses the idea at length in her book The Possible Human.
Houston also gives a variety of visualization exercises in the work and
even calls one “Orchestrating the Brain and Entering the Holoverse.”” 4

Another book that draws heavily on the holographic mode) to support
the idea that we can use visualization to reshape our future is Mary
Orser and Richard A. Zarro’s Changing Your Destiny. In addition, Zarro
is the founder of Futureshaping Technologies, a company that gives
seminars on “futureshaping” techniques to businesses, and numbers
both Panasonic and the International Banking and Credit Association
among its clients.* 5

Former astronaut Edgar Mitchell, the sixth man to walk on the moon
and a longtime explorer of inner as well as outer space, has taken a
similar tack. In 1973 he founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences, a
California-based organization devoted to researching such powers of
the mind. The institute is still going strong, and current projects include
a massive study of the mind’s role in miraculous healings and
spontaneous remissions, and a study of the role consciousness plays in
creating a positive global future. “We create our own reality because
our inner emotional — our subconscious — reality draws us into those
situations from which we learn,” states Mitchell. “We experience it as
strange things happening to us [and] we meet the people in our lives that
we need to learn from. And so we create these circumstances at a very
deep metaphysical and subconscious level.” 8 *

Is the current popularity of the idea that we create our own destiny’
just a fad, or is its presence in so many different cultures and times an
indication of something much deeper, a sign that it is something all
human beings intuitively know is true? At present this question remains
unanswered, but in a holographic universe — a universe in which the
mind participates with reality and in which the innermost stuff of our
psyches can register as synchronicities in the objective world — the
notion that we are also the sculptors of our own fate is not so farfetched.
It even seems probable.

Three Last Pieces of Evidence

Before concluding, three last pieces of evidence deserve to be looked
a t. Although not conclusive, each offers a peek at still other time-
f&nscending abilities consciousness may possess in a holographic uni-





Another past-life researcher who turned up evidence suggestive that
the mind has a hand in creating one’s destiny was the late San
Francisco-based psychologist Dr. Helen Wambach. Wambach’s ap-
s. proach was to hypnotize groups of people in small workshops, regress
them to specified time periods, and ask them a predetermined list of
questions about their sex, clothing style, occupation, utensils used to
eating, and so on. Over the course of her twenty -nine-year investigation
of the past-life phenomenon, she hypnotized literally thousands of
individuals and amassed some impressive findings.

One criticism leveled against reincarnation is that people only seeivi to
remember past lives as famous or historical personages. Wambach,
however, found that more than 90 percent of her subjects recalled past
lives as peasants, laborers, farmers, and primitive food gatherers. Less
than 10 percent remembered incarnations as aristocrats, and none
remembered being anyone famous, a finding that argues against the
notion that past-life memories are fantasies.” 7 Her subjects were also
extraordinarily accurate when it came to historical details, even obscure
ones. For instance, when people remembered lives in the 1700s, they
described using a three-pronged fork to eat their evening meals, but
after 1790 they described most forks as having four prongs, an
observation that correctly reflects the historical evolution of the fork.
Subjects were equally accurate when it came to describing clothing and
footwear, types of foods eaten, et cetera. 88

Wambach discovered she could also progress people to future lives.
Indeed, her subjects’ descriptions of coming centuries were so fasci-
nating she conducted a major future-life-progression project in France
and the United States. Unfortunately, she passed away before com-
pleting the study, but psychologist Chet Snow, a former colleague of
Wambach’s, carried on her work and recently published the results in a
book entitled Mass Dreams of the Future.

When the reports of the 2,500 people who participated in the project
were tallied, several interesting features emerged. First, virtually all of
the respondents agreed that the population of the earth had decreased
dramatically. Many did not even find themselves in physical bodies in
the various future time periods specified, and those who did noted that
the population was much smaller than it is today.

In addition, the respondents divided up neatly into four categories,
each relating a different future. One group described a joyless and

Time Out of Mind


sterile future in which most people lived in space stations, wore silvery
suits, and ate synthetic food. Another, the “New Agers,” reported living
happier and more natural lives in natural settings, in harmony nitb one
another, and in dedication to learning and spiritual development. Type 3,
the “hi-tech urbanites,” described a bleak mechanical future in which
people lived in underground cities and cities enclosed in domes and
bubbles. Type 4 described themselves as post-disaster survivors living
in a world that had been ravaged by some global, possibly nuclear,
disaster. People in this group lived in homes ranging from urban ruins to
caves to isolated farms, wore plain handsewn clothing that was often
made of fur, and obtained much of their food by hunting.

“What is the explanation? Snow turns to the holographic model for the
answer, and like Loye, believes that such findings suggest that there are
several potential futures, or holoverses, forming in the gathering mists
of fate. But like other past-iife researchers he also believes we create our
own destiny, both individually and collectively, and thus the four
scenarios are really a glimpse into the various potential futures the
human race is creating for itself en masse.

Consequently, Snow recommends that instead of building bomb
shelters or moving to areas that won’t be destroyed by the “coming Earth
changes” predicted by some psychics, we should spend time believing
in and visualizing a positive future. He cites the Planetary
Commission — the ad hoc collection of millions of individuals around
the world who have agreed to spend the hour of 12:00 to 1:00 P.M.,
Greenwich mean time, each December thirty -first united in prayer and
meditation on world peace and healing — as a step in the right direction.
“If we are continually shaping our future physical reality by today’s
collective thoughts and actions, then the time to wake up to the
alternative we have created is now, ” states Snow. “The choices between
the kind of Earth represented by each of the Types are clear. Which do
we want for our grandchildren? Which do we want perhaps to return to
ourselves someday?”” 9


The future may not be the only thing that can be formed and reshaped
by human thought. At the 1988 Annual Convention of the
Parapsychologieal Association, Helmut Schmidt and Marilyn Schlitz
announced that several experiments they had conducted indicated the



Time Out of Mind


mind may be able to alter the past as well. In one study Schmidt and
Schlitz used a computerized randomization process to record 1,000
different sequences of sound. Each sequence consisted of 100 tones of
varying duration, some of them pleasing to the ear and some just bursts
of noise. Because the selection process was random, according to the
laws of probability each sequence should contain roughly 50 percent
pleasing sounds and 50 percent noise.

Cassette recordings of the sequences were then mailed to volunteers.
While listening to the prerecorded cassettes the subjects were told to try
to psychokinetically increase the duration of the pleasing sounds and
decrease the durations of the noise. After the subjects completed the
task, they notified the lab of their attempts, and Schmidt and Schlitz then
examined the original sequences. They discovered that the recordings
the subjects listened to contained significantly longer stretches of
pleasing sounds than noise. In other words, it appeared that the subjects
had psychokinetically reached back through time and had an effect on
the randomized process from which their prerecorded cassettes had
been made.

In another test Schmidt and Schlitz programmed the computer to
produce 100-tone sequences randomly composed of four different notes,
and subjects were instructed to try to psychokinetically cause more high
notes to appear on the tapes than low. Again a retroactive PK effect was
found. Schmidt and Schlitz also discovered that volunteers who
meditated regularly exerted a greater PK effect than non-meditators,
suggesting again that contact with the unconscious is the key to
accessing the reality-structuring portions of the psyche. 90

The idea that we can psychokinetically alter events that have already
occurred is an unsettling notion, for we are so deeply programmed to
believe the past is frozen as if it were a butterfly in glass, it is difficult
for us to imagine otherwise. But in a holographic universe, a universe in
which time is an illusion and reality is no more than a mind-created
image, it is a possibility to which we may have to become accustomed.


As fantastic as the above two notions are, they are small change
compared to the last category of time anomaly that merits our attention.
On August 10, 1901, two Oxford professors, Anne Moberly, the
principal of St. Hugh’s College, Oxford, and Eleanor Jourdain, the vice

principal, were walking through the garden of the Petit Trianon at
Versailles when they saw a shimmering effect pass over the landscape
in front of them, not unlike the special effects in a movie when it
changes from one scene to another. After the shimmering passed they
noticed that the landscape had changed. Suddenly the people around
them were wearing eighteenth-century costumes and wigs and were
oehaving in an agitated manner. As the two women stood dumbfounded,
a repulsive man with a pockmarked face approached and urged them to
change their direction. They followed him past a line of trees to a
garden where they heard strains of music floating through the air and
saw an aristocratic lady painting a watercolor.

Eventually the vision vanished and the landscape returned to normal,
but the transformation had been so dramatic that when the women
looked behind them they realized the path they had just walked down
was now blocked by an old stone wall. When they returned to England,
they searched through historical records and concluded that they had
been transported back in time to the day in which the sacking of the
Tuileries and the massacre of the Swiss Guards had taken place — which
accounted for the agitated manner of the people in the garden — and that
the woman in the garden was none other than Marie Antoinette. So
vivid was the experience that the women filled a book-length
manuscript about the occurrence and presented it to the British Society
for Psychical Research. 91

What makes Moberly and Jourdain’s experience so significant is that
they did not simply have a retrocognitive vision of the past, but actually
walked back into the past, meeting people and wandering around in the
Tuileries garden as it was more than one hundred years earlier. Moberly
and Jourdain’s experience is difficult to accept as real, hut given that it
provided them with no obvious benefit, and most certainly put their
academic reputations at risk, one is hard pressed to imagine what would
motivate them to make up such a story.

And it is not the only such occurrence at the Tuileries to be reported
to the British Society for Psychical Research. In May 1955, a London
solicitor and his wife also encountered several eighteenth-century
figures in the garden. And on another occasion, the staff of an embassy
whose offices overlook Versailles claims to have watched the garden
revert back to an earlier period of history as well. 92 Here in the United
States parapsychologist Gardner Murphy, a former president of both
the American Psychological Association and the American Society for
“sychical Research, investigated a similar case in which a woman



identified only by the name Buterbaugh looked out the window of her
office at Nebraska Wesley an University and saw the campus as it was
fifty years earlier. Gone were the bustling streets and the sorority houses,
and in their place was an open field and a sprinkling of trees, their leaves
aflutter in the breeze of a summer long since passed. *~

Is the boundary between the present and the past so flimsy that we can,
under the right circumstances, stroll back into the past with the same
ease that we can stroll through a garden? At present we simply do not
know, but in a world that is comprised less of solid objects traveling in
space and time, and more of ghostly holograms of energy sustained by
processes that are at least partially connected to human consciousness,
such events may not be as impossible as they appear.

And if this seems disturbing — this idea that our minds and even our
bodies are far less bound by the strictures of time than we have
previously imagined — we should remember that the idea the Earth is
round once proved equally frightening to a humanity convinced that it
was flat. The evidence presented in this chapter suggests that we are still
children when it comes to understanding the true nature of time. And
like all children poised on the threshold of adulthood, we should put
aside our fears and come to terms with the way the world really is. For in
a holographic universe, a universe in which all things are just ghostly
coruscations of energy, more than just our understanding of time must
change. There are still other shimmerings to cross our landscape, still
deeper depths to plumb.


Traveling in the

Access to holographic reality becomes experientiafiy available when
one’s consciousness is freed from its dependence on the physical body.
So long as one remains tied to the body and its sensory modalities,
holographic reality at best can only be an intellectual construct. When
one [is freed from the body] one experiences it directly. That is why
mystics speak about their visions with such certitude and conviction,
while those who haven’t experienced this realm for themselves are left
feeling skeptical or even indifferent.

—Kenneth Ring, Ph.D.
Life at Death

Time is not the only thing that is illusory in a holographic universe.
Space, too, must be viewed as a product of our mode of perception. This
is even more difficult to comprehend than the idea that time is a
construct, for when it comes to trying to conceptualize “spacelessness”
there are no easy analogies, no images of amoeboid universes or
crystallizing futures, to fall back on. We are so conditioned to think in
terms of space as an absolute that it is hard for us even to begin to
imagine what it would be like to exist in a realm in which space did




Traveling in the Superhologram


not exist. Nonetheless, there is evidence that we are ultimately no more
bound by space than we are by time.

One powerful indication that this is so can be found in out-of-body
phenomena, experiences in which an individual’s conscious awareness
appears to detach itself from the physical body and travel to some other
location. Out-of-body experiences, or OBEs, have been reported
throughout history by individuals from all walks of life. Aldous Huxley,
Goethe, D. H. Lawrence, August Strindberg, and Jack London a]]
reported having OBEs. Lhey were known to the Egyptians, the North
American Indians, the Chinese, the Greek philosophers, the medieval
alchemists, the Oceanic peoples, the Hindus, the Hebrews, and the
Moslems. In a cross-cultural study of 44 non- Western societies, Dean
Shiels found that only three did not hold a belief in OBEs. 1 In a similar
study anthropologist Erika Bourguignon looked at 488 world socie-
ties — or roughly 57 percent of all known societies — and found that 437
of them, or 89 percent, had at least some tradition regarding OBEs.”

Even today studies indicate that OBEs are still widespread. Lhe late
Dr. Robert Crookall, a geologist at the University of Aberdeen and an
amateur parapsychologist, investigated enough cases to fill nine books
on the subject. In the 1960s Celia Green, the director of the Institute of
Psychophysical Research in Oxford, polled 115 students at South-
ampton University and found that 19 percent admitted to having an
OBE. When 380 Oxford students were similarly questioned, 34 percent
answered in the affirmative. 3 In a survey of 902 adults Haralds-son
found that 8 percent had experienced being out of their bodies at least
once in their life.” And a 1980 survey conducted by Dr. Harvey Irwin at
the University of New England in Australia revealed that 20 percent of
177 students had experienced an OBE. ‘ When averaged, these figures
indicate that roughly one out of every five people will have an OBE at
some point in his or her life. Other studies suggest the incidence may be
closer to one in ten, but the fact remains: OBEs are far more common
than most people realize.

Lhe typical OBE is usually spontaneous and occurs most often during
sleep, meditation, anesthesia, illness, and instances of traumatic pain
(although they can occur under other circumstances as well). Suddenly
a person experiences the vivid sensation that his mind has separated
from his body. Frequently he finds himself floating over his body and
discovers he can travel or fly to other locations. What is it like to find
oneself free from the physical and staring down at one’s own body? In a
1980 study of 339 cases of out-of-body travel, Dr. Glen

Gabbard of the Menninger Foundation in Lopeka, Dr. Stuart Lwemlow
of the Lopeka Veterans’ Administration Medical Center, and Dr. powler
Jones of the University of Kansas Medical Center found that a
whopping 85 percent described the experience as pleasant and over half
of them said it was joyful. 6

I know the feeling. I had a spontaneous OBE as a teenager, and after
recovering from the shock of finding myself floating over my body and
staring down at myself asleep in bed, I had an indescribably
exhilarating time flying through walls and soaring over the treetops.
During the course of my bodiless journey I even stumbled across a
library book a neighbor had lost and was able to tell her where the book
was located the next day. I describe this experience in detail in Beyond
the Quantum.

It is of no small significance that Gabbard, Lwemlow, and Jones also
studied the psychological profile of OBEers and found that they were
psychologically normal and were on the whole extremely well adjusted.
At the 1980 meeting of the American Psychiatric Association they
presented their conclusions and told their colleagues that reassurances
that OBEs are common occurrences and referring the patient to books
on the subject may be “more therapeutic” than psychiatric treatment.
Lhey even hinted that patients might gain more relief by talking to a
yogi than to a psychiatrist! 7

Such facts notwithstanding, no amount of statistical findings are as
convincing as actual accounts of such experiences. For example,
Kimberiy Clark, a hospital social worker in Seattle, Washington, did
not take OBEs seriously until she encountered a coronary patient
named Maria. Several days after being admitted to the hospital Maria
had a cardiac arrest and was quickly revived. Clark visited her later that
afternoon expecting to find her anxious over the fact that her heart had
stopped. As she had expected, Maria was agitated, but not for the
reason she had anticipated.

Maria told Clark that she had experienced something very strange.
After her heart had stopped she suddenly found herself looking down
from the ceiling and watching the doctors and the nurses working on
her. Lhen something over the emergency room driveway distracted her
and as soon as she “thought herself there, she was there. Next Maria
“thought her way” up to the third floor of the building and found herself
“eyeball to shoelace” with a tennis shoe. It was an old shoe and she
noticed that the little toe had worn a hole through the fabric. She also
noticed several other details, such as the fact that the



Traveling in the Stiperboloiapram

lace was stuck under the heel. After Maria finished her account she
begged Clark to please go to the ledge and see if there was a shoe there
so that she could confirm whether her experience was real or not

Skeptical but intrigued, Clark went outside and looked up at the ledge,
but saw nothing. She went up to the third floor and began going in and
out of patients’ rooms looking through windows so narrow she had to
press her face against the glass just to see the ledge at all. Finally, she
found a room where she pressed her face against the glass and looked
down and saw the tennis shoe. Still, from her vantage point she could not
tell if the little toe had worn a place in the shoe or if any of the other
details Maria had described were correct. It wasn’t until she retrieved the
shoe that she confirmed Maria’s various observations. “The only way she
would have had such a perspective was if she had been floating right
outside and at very close range to the tennis shoe,” states Clark, who has
since become a believer in OBEs. “It was very concrete evidence for
me.” 8

Experiencing an OBE during cardiac arrest is relatively common, so
common that Michael B. Sabom, a cardiologist and professor of medi-
cine at Emory University and a staff physician at the Atlanta Veterans’
Administration Medical Center, got tired of hearing his patients recount
such “fantasies” and decided to settle the matter once and for all. Sabom
selected two groups of patients, one composed of 32 seasoned cardiac
patients who had reported OBEs during their heart attacks, and one
made up of 25 seasoned cardiac patients who had never experienced an
OBE. He then interviewed the patients, asking the OBEers to describe
their own resuscitation as they had witnessed it from the out-of-body
state, and asking the nonexperiencers to describe what they imagined
must have transpired during their resuscitation.

Of the nonexperiencers, 20 made major mistakes when they described
their resuscitations, 3 gave correct but general descriptions, and 2 had no
idea at all what had taken place. Among the experiencers, 26 gave correct
but general descriptions, 6 gave highly detailed and accurate
descriptions of their own resuscitation, and 1 gave a blow-by-blow
accounting so accurate that Sabom was stunned. The results inspired him
to delve even deeper into the phenomenon, and like Clark, he has now
become an ardent believer and lectures widely on the subject. There
appears “to be no plausible explanation for the accuracy of these
observations involving the usual physical senses,” he

says- “The out-of-body hypothesis simply seems to fit best with the data
at hand.” 9

Although the OBEs experienced by such patients are spontaneous,
some people have mastered the ability well enough to leave their body a t
will- One of the most famous of these individuals is a former radio and
television executive named Robert Monroe. When Monroe had his first
OBE in the late 1 950s he thought he was going crazy and immediately
sought medical treatment. The doctors he consulted found nothing
wrong, but he continued to have his strange experiences and continued
to be greatly disturbed by them. Finally, after learning from a
psychologist friend that Indian yogis reported leaving their bodies all
the time, he began to accept his uninvited talent. “I had two options,”
Monroe recalls. ” One was sedation for the rest of my life; the other was
to learn something about this state so I could control it.” 10

From that day forward Monroe began keeping a written journal of his
experiences, carefully documenting everything he learned about the
out-of-body state. He discovered he could pass through solid objects and
travel great distances in the twinkling of an eye simply by “thinking”
himseif there. He found that other people were seldom aware of his
presence, although the friends whom he traveled to see while in this
“second state” quickly became believers when he accurately described
their dress and activity at the time of his out-of-body visit. He also
discovered that he was not alone in his pursuit and occasionally bumped
into other disembodied travelers. Thus far he has catalogued his
experiences in two fascinating books, Journeys Out of the Body and Far

OBEs have also been documented in the lab. In one experiment,
parapsychologist Charles Tart was able to gei a skilled OBEer he
identifies only as Miss Z to identify correctly a five-digit number writ-
ten on a piece of paper that could only be reached if she were floating in
the out-of-body state. 13 In a series of experiments conducted at the
American Society for Psychical Research in New York, Karlis Osis and
psychologist Janet Lee Mitchell found several gifted subjects who were
able to “fly in” from various locations around the country and correctly
describe a wide range of target images, including objects placed on a
table, colored geometric patterns placed on a free-floating shelf near the
ceiling, and optical illusions that could only be seen when an observer
peered through a small window in a special device. u Dr. Robert Morris,
the director of research at the Psychical Research



Traveling in the Superholograrn


Foundation in Durham, North Carolina, has even used animals to detect
out-of-body visitations. In one experiment, for instance, Morris found
that a kitten belonging to a talented out-of-body subject named Keith
Harary consistently stopped meowing and started purring whenever
Harary was invisibly present. 15

OBEs as a Holographic Phenomenon

Considered as a whole the evidence seems unequivocal. Although we
are taught that we “think” with our brains, this is not always true. Under
the right circumstances our consciousness — the thinking, perceiving
part of us — can detach from the physical body and exist just about
anywhere it wants to. Our current scientific understanding cannot
account for this phenomenon, but it becomes much more tractable in
terms of the holographic idea,

A Remember that in a holographic universe, location is itself an illu-
sion. Just as an image of an apple has no specific location on a piece of
holographic film, in a universe that is organized holographically things
and objects also possess no definite location; everything is ultimately
nonlocal, including consciousness. Thus, although our consciousness
appears to be localized in our heads, under certain conditions it can just
as easily appear to be localized in the upper corner of the room,
hovering over a grassy lawn, or floating eyeball-to-shoelace with a
tennis shoe on the third-floor ledge of a building.

If the idea of a nonlocal consciousness seems difficult to grasp, a
useful analogy can once again be found in dreaming. Imagine that you
are dreaming you are attending a crowded art exhibit. As you wander
among the people and gaze at the artworks, your consciousness appears
to be localized in the head of the person you are in the dream. But where
is your consciousness really? A quick analysis will reveal that it is
actually in everything in the dream, in the other people attending the
exhibit, in the artworks, even in the very space of the dream. In a dream,
location is also an illusion because everything — people, objects, space,
consciousness, and so on — is unfolding out of the deeper and more
fundamental reality of the dreamer.

Another strikingly holographic feature of the OBE is the plasticity of
the form a person assumes once they are out of the body. After
detaching from the physical, OBEers sometimes find themselves in a

ghostlike body that is an exact replica of their biological body. This
caused some researchers in the past to postulate that human beings
possess a “phantom double” not unlike the doppelganger of literature.

However, recent findings have exposed problems with this assump-
tion. Although some OBEers describe this phantom double as naked,
others find themselves in bodies that are fully clothed. This suggests
that the phantom double is not a permanent energy replica of the
biological body, but is instead a kind of hologram that can assume
many shapes. This notion is borne out by the fact that phantom doubles
are not the only forms people find themselves in during OBEs. There
are numerous reports where people have also perceived themselves as
balls of light, shapeless clouds of energy, and even no discernible form
at all.

There is even evidence that the form a person assumes during an
OBE is a direct consequence of their beliefs and expectations. For
example, in his 1961 book The Mystical Life, mathematician J. H. M.
Whiteman revealed that he experienced at least two OBEs a month
during most of his adult life and recorded over two thousand such
incidents. He also disclosed that he always felt like a woman trapped in
a man’s body, and during separation this sometimes resulted in his
finding himself in female form. Whiteman experienced various other
forms as well during his OB adventures, including children’s bodies,
and concluded that beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, were the
determining factors in the form this second body assumed. A

Monroe agrees and asserts that it is our “thought habits” that create
our OB forms. Because we are so habituated to being in a body, we have
a tendency to reproduce the same form in the OB state. Similarly, he
believes it is the discomfort most people feel when they are naked that
causes OBEers to unconsciously sculpt clothing for themselves when
they assume a human form. “I suspect that one may modify the Second
Body into whatever form is desired,” says Monroe. 16

What is our true form, if any, when we are in the disembodied state?
Monroe has found that once we drop all such disguises, we are at heart a
“vibrational pattern [comprised] of many interacting and resonating
frequencies.” 10 This finding is also remarkably suggestive that some-
thing holographic is going on and offers further evidence that we — like
all things in a holographic universe — are ultimately a frequency phe-
nomenon which our mind converts into various holographic forms. It
also adds credence to Hunt’s conclusion that our consciousness is



contained, not in the brain, but in a plasmic holographic energy field
that both permeates and surrounds the physical body.

The form we assume while in the OB state is not the only thing that
displays this holographic plasticity. Despite the accuracy of the obser-
vations made by talented OB travelers during their disembodied j aunts,
researchers have long been troubled by some of the glaring inaccuracies
that crop up as well. For instance, the title of the lost library book I
stumbled across during my own OBE looked bright green while I was in
a disembodied state. But after I was back in my physical body and
returned to retrieve the book I saw that the lettering was actually black.
The literature is filled with accounts of similar discrepancies, instances
in which OB travelers accurately described a distant room full of people,
save that they added an extra person or perceived a couch where there
was reaily a table.

In terms of the holographic idea, one explanation may be that such
OB travelers have not yet fully developed the ability to convert the
frequencies they perceive while in a disembodied state into a com-
pletely accurate holographic representation of consensus reality. In
other words, since OBEers appear to be relying on a completely new set
of senses, these senses may still be wobbly and not yet proficient at the
art of converting the frequency domain into a seemingly objective
construct of reality.

These nonphysica! senses are further hampered by the constraints our
own self-limiting beliefs place upon them. A number of talented OB
travelers have noted that once they became more at home in their
second body they discovered that they could “see” in all directions at
once without turning their heads. In other words, although seeing in all
directions appears to be normal during the OB state, they were so
accustomed to believing that they could see only through their
eyes-even when they were in a nonphysical hologram of their
body — that this belief at first kept them from realizing that they
possessed 360-degree vision.

There is evidence that even our physical senses have fallen victim to
this censorship. Despite our unwavering conviction that we see with our
eyes, reports persist of individuals who possess “eyeless sight,” or the
ability to see with other areas of their bodies. Recently David Eisenberg,
M.D., a clinical research fellow at the Harvard Medical School,
published an account of two school-age Chinese sisters in Beijing who
can “see” well enough with the skin in their armpits to read notes and
identify colors. 17 In Italy the neurologist Cesare Lom-

Traveling in the Superhologram


broso studied a blind girl who could see with the tip of her nose and the
lobe of her left ear. 1 * In the 1960s the prestigious Soviet Academy of
Science investigated a Russian peasant woman named Rosa Kule-shova,
who could see photographs and read newspapers with the tips of her
fingers, and pronounced her abilities genuine. Significantly, the Soviets
ruled out the possibility that Kuleshova was simply detecting the
varying amounts of stored heat different colors emanate natu-
rally — Kuleshova could read a black and white newspaper even when it
was covered with a sheet of heated glass. Kuleshova became so
renowned for her abilities that Life magazine eventually published an
article about her. 20

In short, there is evidence that we too are not limited to seeing only
through our physical eyes. This is, of course, the message inherent in
my father’s friend Tom’s ability to read the inscription on a watch even
when it was shielded by his daughter’s stomach, and also in the re-
mote-viewing phenomenon. One cannot help but wonder if eyeless
sight is actually just further evidence that reality is indeed maya, an
illusion, and our physical body, as well as al! the seeming absoluteness
of its physiology, is as much a holographic construct of our perception
as our second body. Perhaps we are so deeply habituated to believing
that we can see only through our eyes that even in the physical we have
shut ourselves off from the full range of our perceptual capabilities.

Another holographic aspect of OBEs is the blurring of the division
between past and future that sometimes occurs during such experiences.
For example, Osis and Mitchell discovered that when Dr. Alex Tanous,
a well-known psychic and talented OB traveler from Maine, flew in and
attempted to describe the test objects they placed on a table, he had a
tendency to describe items that were placed there days later.’ 21 This
suggests that the realm people enter during the OB state is one of the
subtler levels of reality Bohm speaks about, a region that is closer to the
implicate and hence closer to the level of reality in which the division
between past, present, and future ceases to exist. Put another way, it
appears that instead of tuning into the frequencies that encode the
present, Tanous’s mind inadvertently tuned into frequencies that
contained information about the future and converted those into a
hologram of reality.

That Tanous’s perception of the room was a holographic phenomenon
and not just a precognitive vision that took place solely in his head ‘ s
underscored by another fact. The day of his schedule to produce an



OBE Osis asked New York psychic Christine Whiting to hold vigil in
the room and try to describe any projector she might “see” visiting there.
Despite Whiting’s ignorance of who would be flying in or when, when
Tanous made his OB visit she saw his apparition clearly and described
him as wearing brown corduroy pants and a white cotton shirt, the
clothing Dr. Tanous was wearing in Maine at the time of his attempt.”

Harary has also made occasional OB journeys into the future and
agrees that the experiences are qualitatively different from other
pre-cognitive experiences. “OBEs to future time and space differ from
regular precognitive dreams in that I am definitely ‘out’ and moving
through a black, dark area that ends at some lighted future scene,” he
states. When he makes an OB visit to the future he has sometimes even
seen a silhouette of his future self in the scene, and this is not all. When
the events he has witnessed eventually come to pass, he can also sense
his time-traveling OB self in the actual scene with him. He describes this
eerie sensation as “meeting myself ‘behind’ myself as if I were two
beings,” an experience that surely must put normal deja vus to shame. 23

There are also cases on record of OB journeys into the past. The
Swedish playwright August Strindberg, himself a frequent OB traveler,
describes one in his book Legends. The occurrence took place while
Strindberg was sitting in a wine shop, trying to persuade a young friend
not to give up his military career. To bolster his argument Strindberg
brought up a past incident involving both of them that had taken place
one evening in a tavern. As the playwright proceeded to describe the
event he suddenly “lost consciousness” only to find himself sitting in the
tavern in question and reliving the occurrence. The experience lasted
only for a few moments, and then he abruptly found himself back in his
body and in the present. 24 The argument can also be made that the
retrocognitive visions we examined in the last chapter in which
clairvoyants had the experience that they were actually present during,
and even “floating” over, the historical scenes they were describing are
also a form of OB projection into the past.

Indeed, when one reads the voluminous literature now available on
the OB phenomenon, one is repeatedly struck at the similarities between
OB travelers’ descriptions of their experiences and characteristics we
have now come to associate with a holographic universe. In

Traveling in the Superhologram_


addition to describing the OB state as a place where time and space B o
longer properly exist, where thought can be transformed into holo-
gramlike forms, and where consciousness is ultimately a pattern of
vibrations, or frequencies, Monroe notes that perception during OBEs
seems based less on “a reflection of light waves” and more on “an
impression of radiation,” an observation that suggests once again that
when one enters the OB realm one begins to enter Pribram’s frequency
domain. 25 Other OB travelers have also referred to the frequency like
quality of the Second State. For instance, Marcel Louis Forhan, a
French OB experiencer who wrote under the name of ” Yram,” spends
much of his book, Practical Astral Projection, trying to describe the
wavelike and seemingly electromagnetic qualities of the OB realm. Still
others have commented on the sense of cosmic unity one experiences
during the state and have summarized it as a feeling that “everything is
everything,” and “I am that” 26

As holographic as the OBE is, it is only the tip of the iceberg when it
comes to more direct experience of the frequency aspects of reality.
Although OBEs are only experienced by a segment of the human race,
there is another circumstance under which we all come into closer
contact with the frequency domain. That is when we journey to that
undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns. The rub,
with all due respect to Shakespeare, is that some travelers do return.
And the stories they tell are filled with features that smack once again of
tilings holographic.

The Near-Death Experience

By now, nearly everyone has heard of near-death experiences, or NDEs,
incidents in which individuals are declared clinically “dead,” are
resuscitated, and report that during the experience they left their
physical body and visited what appeared to be the realm of the afterlife.
In our own culture NDEs first came to prominence in 1975 when
Raymond A. Moody, Jr., a psychiatrist who also has a Ph.D. in philoso-
phy, published his best-selling investigation of the subject, Life after
Life. Shortly thereafter Elisabeth Kubler-Ross revealed that she had
simultaneously conducted similar research and had duplicated Moody’s
findings. Indeed, as more and more researchers began to



document the phenomenon it became increasingly clear that NDEs were
not only incredibly widespread — a 1981 Gallup poll found that eight
million adult Americans had experienced an NDE, or roughly one
person in twenty — but provided the most compelling evidence to date
for survival after death.

Like OBEs, NDEs appear to be a universal phenomenon. They are
described at length in both the eighth-century Tibetan Book of the Dead
and the 2,500-year-oid Egyptian Book of the Dead. In Book X of The
Republic Plato gives a detailed account of a Greek soldier named Er,
who came alive just seconds before bis funeral pyre was to be lit and
said that he had left his body and went through a “passageway” to the
land of the dead. The Venerable Bede gives a similar account in his
eighth-century work A History of the English Church and People, and,
in fact, in her recent book Otherworld Journeys Carol Zaleski, a lecturer
on the study of religion at Harvard, points out that medieval literature is
filled with accounts of NDEs.

NDEers also have no unique demographic characteristics. Various
studies have shown that there is no relationship between NDEs and a
person’s age, sex, marital status, race, religion and/or spiritual beliefs,
social class, educational level, income, frequency of church attendance,
size of home community, or area of residence. NDEs, like lightning, can
strike anyone at any time. The devoutly religious are no more likely to
have an NDE than nonbelievers.

One of the most interesting aspects of the ND phenomenon is the
consistency one finds from experience to experience. A summary of a
typical NDE is as follows:

A man is dying and suddenly finds himself floating above his body and
watching what is going on. Within moments he travels at great speed
through a darkness or a tunnel. He enters a realm of dazzling light and is
warmly met by recently deceased friends and relatives. Frequently he
hears indescribably beautiful music and sees sights — rolling meadows,
flower-filled valleys, and sparkling streams — more lovely than anything
he has seen on earth. In this light-filled world he feels no pain or fear and is
pervaded with an overwhelming feeling of joy, love, and peace. He
meets a “being (and or beings) of light” who emanates a feeling of
enormous compassion, and is prompted by the being{s) to experience a
“life review,” a panoramic replay of his life. He becomes so enraptured
by his experience of this greater reality that he desires nothing more
than to stay. However, the being tells him that it is not his time yet and
persuades him to return to his earthly life and reenter his physical body.

Traveling in the Superhologram


It should be noted this is only a general description and not all NDEs
contain all of the elements described. Some may lack some of the
above-mentioned features, and others may contain additional ingredi-
ents. The symbolic trappings of the experiences can also vary. For
example, although NDEers in Western cultures tend to enter the realm
of the afterlife by passing through a tunnel, experiences from other
cultures might walk down a road or pass over a body of water to arrive
in the world beyond.

Nevertheless, there is an astonishing degree of agreement among the
NDEs reported by various cultures throughout history. For instance, the
life review, a feature that crops up again and again in modem-day NDEs,
is also described in the Tibetan Book of the Dead, the Egyptian Book of
the Dead, in Plato’s account of what Er experienced during his sojourn in
the hereafter, and in the 2,000-year-old yogic writings of the Indian sage
Patanjali. The cross-cultural similarities between NDEs has also been
confirmed in formal study. In 1977, Osis and Haraldsson compared
nearly nine hundred deathbed visions reported by patients to doctors and
other medical personnel in both India and the United States and found
that although there were various cultural differences — for example,
Americans tended to view the being of light as a Christian religious
personage and Indians perceived it to be a Hindu one — the “core” of the
experience was substantially the same and resembled the NDEs
described by Moody and Kubler-
Ross. 27

Although the orthodox view of NDEs is that they are just hallucina-
tions, there is substantial evidence that this is not the case. As with OBEs,
when NDEers are out-of-body, they are able to report details they have
no normal sensory means of knowing. For example, Moody reports a
case in which a woman left her body during surgery, floated into the
waiting room, and saw that her daughter was wearing mismatched plaids.
As it turned out, the maid had dressed the little girl so hastily she had not
noticed the error and was astounded when the mother, who did not
physically see the little girl that day, commented on the fact, 28 In another
case, after leaving her body, a female NDEer went to the hospital lobby
and overheard her brother-in-law tell a friend that it looked like he was
going to have to cancel a business trip and instead be one of his
sister-in-law’s pallbearers. After the woman recovered, she reprimanded
her astonished brother-in-law for writing her off so quickly. 29

And these are not even the most extraordinary examples of sensory



Traveling ic the SuperhologTam


awareness in the ND out-of-body state. NDE researchers have found
that even patients who are blind, and have had no light perception for
years, can see and accurately describe what is going on around them
when they have left their bodies during an NDE. Kubler-Ross has
encountered several such individuals and has interviewed them at length
to determine their accuracy. ‘To our amazement, they were able to
describe the color and design of clothing and jewelry the people present
wore,” she states. 30

Most staggering of all are those NDEs and deathbed visions involv-
ing two or more individuals. In one case, as a female NDEer found
herself moving through the tunnel and approaching the realm of light,
she saw a friend of hers coming back! As they passed, the friend
telepathically communicated to her that he had died, but was being
“sent back.” The woman, too, was eventually “sent back” and after she
recovered she discovered that her friend had suffered a cardiac arrest at
approximately the same time of her own experience. 31

There are numerous other cases on record in which dying individuals
knew who was waiting for them in the world beyond before news of the
person’s death arrived through normal channels. 32

And if there is still any doubt, yet another argument against the idea
that NDEs are hallucinations is their occurrence in patients who have
flat EEGs. Under normal circumstances whenever a person talks, thinks,
imagines, dreams, or does just about anything else, their EEG registers
an enormous amount of activity. Even hallucinations measure on the
EEG. But there are many eases in which people with flat EEGs have
had NDEs. Had their NDEs been simple hallucinations, they would
have registered on their EEGs.

In brief, when all these facts are considered together — the wide-
spread nature of the NDE, the absence of demographic characteristics,
the universality of the core experience, the ability of NDEers to see and
know things they have no normal sensory means of seeing and knowing,
and the occurrence of NDEs in patients who have flat EEGs — the
conclusion seems inescapable: People who have NDEs are not suffering
from hallucinations or delusional fantasies, but are actually making
visits to an entirely different level of reality.

This is also the conclusion reached by many NDE researchers. One
such researcher is Dr. Melvin Morse, a pediatrician in Seattle, Wash-
ington. Morse first became interested in NDEs after treating a
seven-year-old drowning victim. By the time the little girl was
resuscitated she was profoundly comatose, had fixed and dilated pupils,
no muscle

reflexes, and no cornea) response. In medical terms this gave her a
Glascow Coma Score of three, indicating that she was in a coma so
deep she had almost no chance of ever recovering. Despite these odds,
she made a full recovery and when Morse looked in on her for the first
time after she regained consciousness she recognized him and said that
she had watched him working on her comatose body. When Morse
questioned her further she explained that she had left her body and
passed through a tunnel into heaven where she had met “the Heavenly
Father.” The Heaveniy Father told her she was not really meant to be
there yet and asked if she wanted to stay or go back. At first she said she
wanted to stay, but when the Heavenly Father pointed out that that
decision meant she would not be seeing her mother again, she changed
her mind and returned to her body.

Morse was skeptical but fascinated and from that point on set out to
learn everything he could about NDEs. At the time, he worked for an air
transport service in Idaho that carried patients to the hospital, and this
afforded him the opportunity to talk with scores of resuscitated children.
Over a ten-year period he interviewed every child survivor of cardiac
arrest at the hospital, and over and over they told him the same thing.
After going unconscious they found themselves outside their bodies,
watched the doctors working on them, passed through a tunnel, and
were comforted by luminous beings.

Morse continued to be skeptical, and in his increasingly desperate
search for some logical explanation he read everything he could find on
the side effects of the drugs his patients were taking, and explored
various psychological explanations, but nothing seemed to fit. “Then
one day I read a long article in a medical journal that tried to explain
NDEs as being various tricks of the brain,” says Morse. “By then I had
studied NDEs extensively and none of the explanations that this
researcher listed made sense. It was finally clear to me that he had
missed the most obvious explanation of all — NDEs are real. He had
missed the possibility that the soul really does travel.” 33

Moody echoes the sentiment and says that twenty years of research
have convinced him that NDEers have indeed ventured into another
level of reality. He believes that most other NDE researchers feel the
same. “I have talked to almost every NDE researcher in the world about
his or her work. I know that most of them believe in their hearts that
NDEs are a glimpse of life after life. But as scientists and people °f
medicine, they still haven’t come up with ‘scientific proof that a part of
us goes on living after our physical being is dead. This lack of proof



Traveling in the Superhologram


keeps them from going public with their true feelings.” 3 ”

As a result of his 1981 survey, even George Gallup, Jr., the president
of the Gallup Poll, agrees: “A growing number of researchers have been
gathering and evaluating the accounts of those who have had strange
near-death encounters. And the preliminary results have been highly
suggestive of some sort of encounter with an extradimensional realm of
reality. Our own extensive survey is the latest in these studies and is also
uncovering some trends that point toward a super parallel universe of

some sort


A Holographic Explanation of the
Near-Death Experience

These are astounding assertions. What is even more astounding is that
the scientific establishment has for the most part ignored both the
conclusions of these researchers and the vast body of evidence that
compels them to make such statements. The reasons for this are complex
and varied. One is that it is currently not fashionable in science to
consider seriously any phenomenon that seems to support the idea of a
spiritual reality, and, as mentioned at the beginning of this book, beliefs
are like addictions and do not surrender their grip easily. Another reason,
as Moody mentions, is the widespread prejudice among scientists that
the only ideas that have any value or significance are those that can be
proven in a strict scientific sense. Yet another is the inability of our
current scientific understanding of reality even to begin to explain NDEs
if they are real.

This last reason, however, may not be the problem it seems. Several
NDE researchers have pointed out that the holographic model offers us a
way to understand these experiences. One such researcher is Dr.
Kenneth Ring, a professor of psychology at the University of Connect-
icut and one of the first NDE researchers to use statistical analysis and
standardized interviewing techniques to study the phenomenon. In his
1980 book Life at Death, Ring spends considerable time arguing in
favor of a holographic explanation of the NDE. Put bluntly, Ring
beiieves that NDEs are also ventures into the more frequencylike
aspects of reality.

Ring bases his conclusion on the numerous suggestively holo-

graphic aspects of the NDE. One is the tendency of experiences to
describe the world beyond as a realm composed of “light,” “higher
vibrations,” or “frequencies.” Some NDEers even refer to the celestial
music that often accompanies such experiences as more “a combination
of vibrations” than actual sounds — observations that Ring believes are
evidence that the act of dying involves a shift of consciousness away
from the ordinary world of appearances and into a more holographic
reality of pure frequency. NDEers also frequently say that the realm is
suffused with a light more brilliant than any they have ever seen on earth,
but one that, despite its unfathomable intensity, does not hurt the eyes,
characterizations that Ring feels are further evidence of the frequency
aspects of the hereafter.

“Another feature Ring finds undeniably holographic is NDEers’ de-
scriptions of time and space in the afterlife realm. One of the most
commonly reported characteristics of the world beyond is that it is a
dimension in which time and space cease to exist. “I found myself in a
space, in a period of time, I would say, where all space and time was
negated,” says one NDEer clumsily. 36 “It has to be out of time and space.
It must be, because … it can’t be put into a time thing,” says another. 37
Given that time and space are collapsed and location has no meaning in
the frequency domain, this is precisely what we would expect to find if
NDEs take place in a holographic state of consciousness, says Ring.

If the near-death realm is even more frequency like than our own level
of reality, why does it appear to have any structure at all? Given that
both OBEs and NDEs offer ample evidence that the mind can exist
independently of the brain, Ring believes it is not too farfetched to
assume that it, too, functions holographically. Thus, when the mind is in
the “higher” frequencies of the near-death dimension, it continues to do
what it does best, translate those frequencies into a world of appearances.
Or as Ring puts it, “I believe that this is a realm that is created by
interacting thought structures. These structures or ‘thought-forms’
combine to form patterns, just as interference waves form patterns on a
holographic plate. And just as the holographic image appears to be fully
real when illuminated by a laser beam, so the images produced by
interacting thought-forms appear to be real.” 3 *

Ring is not alone in his speculations. In the keynote address for the
1 989 meeting of the International Association for Near-Death Studies
UANDS), Dr. Elizabeth W. Fenske, a clinical psychologist in private



Traveling in the Superholograrn


St?™ t A announced that she, too, believes that NDEs

are journeys into a holographic realm of higher frequencies She agrees

MJ^fePa^SS- IjthM^we^apome daBcu[t to make a dlstjnctl

between fought and light In 3 the near A eath experience thought
seems to be light, she observes. tnought

Heaven as Hologram

In addition to those mentioned by Bing and Fenske, the NDE has
numerous other features that are markedly holographic iS OBEers, after
NDEers have detached from the physlLuhey find

£ 3 – °”u f ** «*** > 6’ther M a 4^^^^ cloud of

“5′ * as a llA mlike body sculpted by thought When the

3W h n\h ft E ^W t tfffljw[ f $ $fr|S MfW urpnV


says that when he first emerged from his body he looked “something
hke a jellyfish” and fell lightly to the floor like a soap bubble ?hen he
qu.ckly expanded into a ghostly three-dimensional fmage of a naked

VlTnr A T’ A PreSen Ce ° I tW ° Whminthe ..U-—–. _ J

^§aV ? w — £e6i ing « l aar r rff Le s yie„ v to b

cTothedTthe women, hpwevefo never offered any indication that thTy
were anle to see any of this). -wn uiat tney

thWn Att mnermos ‘. *? AaS md aeA es are responsible for creating the form we
assume m the afterlife dimension is evident in the experf
thTnh f NDBhS c PeoPle who « aM ” ed ta whee chaff n f„d7″ yS ‘ Ca A eX ‘? nCe M
themsewes h heai th ? bod.^ ±gt cAn mn and aW Amputees mva riably have

their limbs back. The elderly often mhab,t youthful bodies, and even
stranger, children frequent y see themselves as adults, a fact that may

afffitffdSfr fee 3 AA ° mdttiS that m our souls ™ of us
These hobgramhke bodies can be remarkably detailed In the incident
mvolvmg the man who became embarrassed at his ownnakedness, for
example, the clothing he materialized for himsTwas so met.cuk.usly
wrought that he could even make out the seamsintne

material!” 1 Similarly, another man who studied his hands while in the
ND state said they were “composed of light with tiny structures in
them” and when he looked closely he could even see “the delicate
whorls of his fingerprints and tubes of light up his arms.” 42

Some of Whitton’s research is also relevant to this issue. Amazingly,
when Whitton hypnotized patients and regressed them to the
between-life state, they too reported all the classic features of the NDE,
passage through a tunnel, encounters with deceased relatives and/or
“guides,” entrance into a splendorons light -filled realm in which time
and space no longer existed, encounters with luminous beings, and a life
review. In fact, according to Whitton’s subjects the main purpose of the
liie review was to refresh their memories so they could more mindfully
plan their next life, a process in which the beings of light gently and
noncoercively assisted.

Like Ring, after studying the testimony of his subjects Whitton
concluded that the shapes and structures one perceives in the afterlife
dimension are thought-forms created by the mind. “Rene Descartes’
famous dictum, ‘I think, therefore I am,’ is never more pertinent than in
the between-life state,” says Whitton. “There is no experience of
existence without thought.”” 13

This was especially true when it came to the form Whitton’s patients
assumed in the between-life state. Several said they didn’t even have a
body unless they were thinking. “One man described it by saying that if
he stopped thinking he was merely a cloud in an endless cloud,
undifferentiated,” he observes. “But as soon as he started to think, he
became himself A (a state of affairs that is oddly reminiscent of the
subjects in Tart’s mutual hypnosis experiment who discovered they
didn’t have hands unless they thought them into existence). At first the
bodies Whitton’s subjects assumed resembled the persons they had been
in their last life. But as their experience in the between-life state
continued, they gradually became a kind of hologramlike composite of
all of their past lives. 45 This composite identity even had a name
separate from any of the names they had used in their physical
incarnations, although none of his subjects was able to pronounce it
using their physical vocal cords. ‘ s

What do NDEers look like when they have not constructed a holo-
gram like body for themselves? Many say that they were not aware of
any form and were simply “themselves” or “their mind.” Others have
more specific impressions and describe themselves as “a cloud of col-
ors,” “a mist,” “an energy pattern,” or “an energy field,” terms that



again suggest that we are all ultimately just frequency phenomena,
patterns of some unknown vibratory energy enfolded in the greater
matrix of the frequency domain. Some NDEers assert that in addition to
being composed of colored frequencies of light, we are also constituted
out of sound. “I realized that each person and thing has its own musical
tone range as well as its own color range,” says an Arizona housewife
who had an NDE during childbirth, “If you can imagine yourself
effortlessly moving in and out among prismatic rays of light and hearing
each person’s musical notes join and harmonize with your own when
you touch or pass them, you would have some idea of the unseen world. ”
The woman, who encountered many individuals in the afterlife realm
who manifested only as clouds of colors and sound, believes the
mellifluous tones each soul emanates are what people are describing
when they say they hear beautiful music in the ND dimension.” 7

Like Monroe, some NDEers report being able to see in all directions
at once while in the disembodied state. After wondering what he looked
like, one man said he suddenly found himself staring at his own back. 48
Robert Sullivan, an amateur NDE researcher from Pennsylvania who
specializes in NDEs by soldiers during combat, interviewed a World
War II veteran who temporarily retained this ability even after he
returned to his physical body. “He experienced
three -hundred-sixty-degree vision while running away from a German
machine-gun nest,” says Sullivan. “Not only could he see ahead as he ran,
but he could see the gunners trying to draw a bead on him from
behind.”- 19

Instantaneous Knowledge

Another part of the NDE that possesses many holographic features is the
life review. Ring refers to it as “a holographic phenomenon par
excellence. ” Grof and Joan Halifax, a Harvard medical anthropologist
and the coauthor (with Grof) of The Human Encounter with Death.,
have also commented on the life review’s holographic aspects. According
to several NDE researchers, including Moody, even many NDEers
themselves use the term “holographic” when describing the experi-
ence. 50

The reason for this characterization is obvious as soon as one begins to
read accounts of the life review. Again and again NDEers use the

Traveling in the Superbologram


same adjectives to describe it, referring to it as an incredibly vivid,
wrap-around, three-dimensional replay of their entire life. “It’s like
climbing right inside a movie of your life,” says one NDEer. “Every
moment from every year of your life is played back in complete sen
sory detail. Total, total recall. And it all happens in an instant” ‘ “The
whole thing was really odd. I was there; I was actually seeing these
flashbacks; I was actually walking through them, and it was so fast
Yet, it was slow enough that I could take it all in,” says another. 62
During this instantaneous and panoramic remembrance NDEers
reexperience al! the emotions, the joys and the sorrows, that accompa
nied all of the events in their life. More than that, they feel all of the
emotions of the people with whom they have interacted as well. They
feel the happiness of all the individuals to whom they’ve been kind. If
they have committed a hurtful act, they become acutely aware of the
pain their victim felt as a result of their thoughtlessness. And no event
seems too trivial to be exempt While reliving a moment in her child
hood, one woman suddenly experienced all the loss and powerlessness
her sister had felt after she (then a child) snatched a toy away from
her sister. *\_

Whitton has uncovered evidence that thoughtless acts are not the only
things that cause individuals remorse during the life review. Under
hypnosis his subjects reported that failed dreams and aspira-
tions — things they had hoped to accomplish during their life but had
not — also caused them pangs of sadness-Thoughts, too, are replayed
with exacting fidelity during the life review. Reveries, faces glimpsed
once but remembered for years, things that made one laugh, the joy one
felt when gazing at a particular painting, childish worries, and long
forgotten daydreams — all flit through one’s mind in a second. As one
NDEer summarizes, “Not even your thoughts are lost . . . Every thought
was there.” 33

And so, the life review is holographic not only in its three-dimensionality,
but in the amazing capacity for information storage the process displays. It
is also holographic in a third way. Like the kabbalistic [ “aleph,” a
mythical point in space and time that contains all other points in space and
time, it is a moment that contains all other moments. Even the ability to
perceive the life review seems holographic in that it is a faculty capable of
experiencing something that is paradoxically at once both incredibly rapid
and yet slow enough to witness in detail. As an NDEer in 1821 put it, it is
the ability to “simultaneously comprehend the whole and every part.” 64



In fact, the life review bares a marked resemblance to the afterlife
judgment scenes described in the sacred texts of many of the world’s
great religions, from the Egyptian to the Judeo-Christian, but with one
crucial difference. Like Whitton’s subjects, NDEers universally report
that they are never judged by the beings of light, but feel only love and
acceptance in their presence. The only judgment that ever takes place is
self- judgment and arises solely out of the NDEer’s own feelings of guilt
and repentance. Occasionally the beings do assert themselves, but
instead of behaving in an authoritarian manner, they act as guides and
counselors whose only purpose is to teach.

This total lack of cosmic judgment and/or any divine system of
punishment and reward has been and continues to be one of the most
controversial aspects of the NDE among religious groups, but it is one
of the most oft reported features of the experience. What is the expla-
nation? Moody believes it is as simple as it is polemic. We live in a
universe that is far more benevolent than we realize.

That is not to say that anything goes during the life review. Like
Whitton’s hypnotic subjects, after arriving in the realm of light NDEers
appear to enter a state of heightened or metaconsciousness awareness
and become lucidly honest in their self-reflections.

It also does not mean that the beings of light prescribe no values. In
NDE after NDE they stress two things. One is the importance of love.
Over and over they repeat this message, that we must learn to replace
anger with love, learn to love more, learn to forgive and love everyone
unconditionally, and learn that we in turn are loved. This appears to be
the only moral criterion the beings use. Even sexual activity ceases to
possess the moral stigma we humans are so fond of attaching to it. One
of Whitton’s subjects reported that after living several withdrawn and
depressed incarnations he was urged to plan a life as an amorous and
sexually active female in order to add balance to the overall
development of his soul. 55 It appears that in the minds of the beings of
light, compassion is the barometer of grace, and time and time again
when NDEers wonder if some act they committed was right or wrong,
the beings counter their inquiries only with a question: Did you do it out
of love? Was the motivation love?

That is why we have been placed here on the earth, say the beings, to
learn that love is the key. They acknowledge that it is a difficult
undertaking, but intimate that it is crucial to both our biological and
spiritual existence in ways that we have perhaps not even begun to
fathom. Even children return from the near-death realm with this

Traveling in the Superhoiogram


message firmly impressed in their thoughts. States one little boy who
after being hit by a car was guided into the world beyond by two people
in “very white” robes: “What I learned there is that the most important
thing is loving while you are alive.” 56

The second thing the beings emphasize is knowledge. Frequently
NDEers comment that the beings seemed pleased whenever an incident
involving knowledge or learning flickered by during their life review.
Some are openly counseled to embark on a quest for knowledge after
they return to their physical bodies, especially knowledge related to
self-growth or that enhances one’s ability to help other people. Others
are prodded with statements such as “learning is a continuous process
and goes on even after death” and “knowledge is one of the few things
you will be able to take with you after you have died.”

The preeminence of knowledge in the afterlife dimension is apparent
in another way. Some NDEers discovered that in the presence of the
light they suddenly had direct access to all knowledge. This access
manifested in several ways. Sometimes it came in response to inquiries.
One man said that all he had to do was ask a question, such as what
would it be like to be an insect, and instantly the experience was his. 57
Another NDEer described it by saying, “You can think of a question . . .
and immediately know the answer to it. As simple as that. And it can be
any question whatsoever. It can be on a subject that you don’t know
anything about, that you are not in the proper position even to
understand and the light will give you the instantaneous correct answer
and make you understand it. ” 58

Some NDEers report that they didn’t even have to ask questions in
order to access this infinite library of information. Following their life
review they just suddenly knew everything, all the knowledge there was
to know from the beginning of time to the end. Others came into contact
with this knowledge after the being of light made some specific gesture,
such as wave its hand. Still others said that instead of acquiring the
knowledge, they remembered it, but forgot most of what they recalled
as soon as they returned to their physical bodies (an amnesia that seems
to be universal among NDEers who are privy to such visions). 53
Whatever the case, it appears that once we are in the world beyond, it is
no longer necessary to enter an altered state of consciousness in order to
have access to the transpersona! and infinitely interconnected
informational realm experienced by Grof s patients.



In fact, the life review bares a marked resemblance to the afterlife
judgment scenes described in the sacred texts of many of the world’s
great religions, from the Egyptian to the Judeo-Christian, but with one
crucial difference. Like Whitton’s subjects, NDEers universally report
that they are never judged by the beings of light, but feel only Jove and
acceptance in their presence. The only judgment that ever takes place is
self- judgment and arises solely out of the NDEer’s own feelings of guilt
and repentance. Occasionally the beings do assert themselves, but
instead of behaving in an authoritarian manner, they act as guides and
counselors whose only purpose is to teach.

This total lack of cosmic judgment and/or any divine system of
punishment and reward has been and continues to be one of the most
controversial aspects of the NDE among religious groups, but it is one
of the most oft reported features of the experience. What is the expla-
nation? Moody believes it is as simple as it is polemic. We live in a
universe that is far more benevolent than we realize.

That is not to say that anything goes during the life review. Like
Whitton’s hypnotic subjects, after arriving in the realm of light NDEers
appear to enter a state of heightened or metaconsciousness awareness
and become lucidly honest in their self-reflections.

It also does not mean that the beings of light prescribe no values. In
NDE after NDE they stress two things. One is the importance of love.
Over and over they repeat this message, that we must learn to replace
anger with love, learn to love more, learn to forgive and love everyone
unconditionally, and learn that we in turn are loved. This appears to be
the only moral criterion the beings use. Even sexual activity ceases to
possess the moral stigma we humans are so fond of attaching to it. One
of Whitton’s subjects reported that after living several withdrawn and
depressed incarnations he was urged to plan a life as an amorous and
sexually active female in order to add balance to the overall development
of his soul. ss It appears that in the minds of the beings of light,
compassion is the barometer of grace, and time and time again when
NDEers wonder if some act they committed was right or wrong, the
beings counter their inquiries only with a question: Did you do it out of
love? Was the motivation love?

That is why we have been placed here on the earth, say the beings, to
learn that love is the key. They acknowledge that it is a difficult
undertaking, but intimate that it is crucial to both our biological and
spiritual existence in ways that we have perhaps not even begun to
fathom. Even children return from the near-death realm with this

Traveling in the Superhoiogram


message firmly impressed in their thoughts. States one little boy who
after being hit by a car was guided into the world beyond by two people
in “very white” robes: “What I learned there is that the most important
thing is loving while you are alive. ” S6

The second thing the beings emphasize is knowledge. Frequently
NDEers comment that the beings seemed pleased whenever an incident
involving knowledge or learning flickered by during their life review.
Some are openly counseled to embark on a quest for knowledge after
they return to their physical bodies, especially knowledge related to
self-growth or that enhances one’s ability to help other people. Others
are prodded with statements such as “learning is a continuous process
and goes on even after death” and “knowledge is one of the few things
you will be able to take with you after you have died.”

The preeminence of knowledge in the afterlife dimension is apparent
in another way. Some NDEers discovered that in the presence of the
light they suddenly had direct access to all knowledge. This access
manifested in several ways. Sometimes it came in response to inquiries.
One man said that all he had to do was ask a question, such as what
would it be like to be an insect, and instantly the experience was his. 67
Another NDEer described it by saying, “You can think of a question . . .
and immediately know the answer to it. As simple as that. And it can be
any question whatsoever. It can be on a subject that you don’t know
anything about, that you are not in the proper position even to
understand and the light will give you the instantaneous correct answer
and make you understand it.” 5 **

Some NDEers report that they didn’t even have to ask questions in
order to access this infinite library of information. Following their life
review they just suddenly knew everything, all the knowledge there was
to know from the beginning of time to the end. Others came into contact
with this knowledge after the being of light made some specific gesture,
such as wave its hand. Still others said that instead of acquiring the
knowledge, they remembered it, but forgot most of what they recalled
as soon as they returned to their physical bodies (an amnesia that seems
to be universal among NDEers who are privy to such visions). 63
Whatever the case, it appears that once we are in the world beyond, it is
no longer necessary to enter an altered state of consciousness in order to
have access to the transpersona! and infinitely interconnected
informational realm experienced by Grof s patients.



In addition to being holographic in all the ways already mentioned,
this vision of total knowledge has another holographic characteristic.
NDEers often say that during the vision the information arrives in
“chunks” that register instantaneously in one’s thoughts. In other words,
rather than being strung out in a linear fashion like words in a sentence
or scenes in a movie, all the facts, details, images, and pieces of
information burst into one’s awareness in an instant. One NDEer
referred to these bursts of information as “bundles of thought”*
Monroe, who has also experienced such instantaneous explosions of
information while in the OB state, calls them “thought balls.” 61

Indeed, anyone who possesses any appreciable psychic ability is
familiar with this experience, for this is the form in which one receives
psychic information as well. For instance, sometimes when I meet a
stranger {and on occasion even when I just hear a person’s name), a
thought ball of information about that person will instantly flash into my
awareness. This thought ball can include important facts about the
person’s psychological and emotional makeup, their health, and even
scenes from their past. I find that I am especially prone to getting
thought balls about people who are in some kind of crisis. For example,
recently I met a woman and instantly knew she was contemplating
suicide. I also knew some of the reasons why. As I always do in such
situations, I started talking to her and cautiously maneuvered the
conversation to things psychic. After finding out that she was receptive
to the subject, I confronted her with what I knew and got her to talk
about her problems. I got her to promise to seek some kind of
professional counseling instead of the darker option she was

Receiving information in this manner is similar to the way one
becomes aware of information while dreaming. Virtually everyone has
had a dream in which they find themselves in a situation and suddenly
know all kinds of things about it without being told. For instance, you
might dream you are at a party and as soon as you are there you know
who it is being given for and why. Similarly, everyone has had a
detailed idea or inspiration dawn upon them in a flash. Such experiences
are lesser versions of the thought ball effect.

Interestingly, because these bursts of psychic information arrive in
nonlinear chunks, it sometimes takes me several moments to translate
them into words. Like the psychological gestalts experienced by in-
dividuals during transpersonal experiences, they are holographic in

Traveling in the Superhologram


the sense that they are instantaneous “wholes” our time-oriented minds
must struggle with for a moment in order to unravel and convert into a
serial arrangement of parts.

What form does the knowledge contained in the thought balls expe-
rienced during NDEs take? According to NDEers all forms of commu-
nication are used, sounds, moving hologramlike images, even telepa-
thy — a fact that Ring believes demonstrates once again that the hereafter
is “a world of existence where thought is king.” 62

The thoughtful reader may immediately wonder why the quest for
learning is so important during life if we have access to all knowledge
after we die? When asked this question NDEers replied that they
weren’t certain, but felt strongly that it had something to do with the
purpose of life and the ability of each individual to reach out and help
others. – A

Life Plans and Parallel Time Tracks

Like Whitton, NDE researchers have also uncovered evidence that our
lives are planned beforehand, at least to some extent, and we each play a
role in the creation of this plan. This is apparent in several aspects of the
experience. Frequently after arriving in the world of light, NDEers are
told that “it is not their time yet.” As Ring points out, this remark clearly
implies the existence of some kind of “life plan.” 63 It is also clear that
NDEers play a role in the formulation of these destinies, for they are
often given the choice whether to return or stay. There are even
instances of NDEers being told that it is their time and still being
allowed to return. Moody cites a case in which a man started to cry when
he realized he was dead because he was afraid his wife wouldn’t be able
to raise their nephew without him. On hearing this the being told him
that since he wasn’t asking for himself he would be allowed to return. M
In another case a woman argued that she hadn’t danced enough yet. Her
remark caused the being of light to give a hearty laugh and she, too, was
given permission to return to physical life.* s

That our future is at least partially sketched out is also evident in a
phenomenon Ring calls the “personal flashforward.” On occasion,
during the vision of knowledge, NDEers are shown glimpses of their
own future. In one particularly striking case a child NDEer was told



various specifics about his future, including the fact that he would be
married at age twenty-eight and would have two children. He was even
shown his adult self and his future children sitting in a room of the house
he would eventually be living in, and as he gazed at the room he noticed
something very strange on the wall, something that his mind could not
grasp. Decades later and after each of these predictions had come to
pass, he found himself in the very scene he had witnessed as a child and
realized that the strange object on the wall was a “forced-air heater,” a
kind of heater that had not yet been invented at the time of his NDE. 66

In another equally astonishing personal flashforward a female NDEer
was shown a photograph of Moody, told his full name, and told that
when the time was right she would tell him about her experience. The
year was 1 97 1 and Moody had not yet published Life after Life, so his
name and picture meant nothing to the woman. However, the time
became “right” four years later when Moody and his family unwittingly
moved to the very street on which the woman lived. That Halloween
Moody’s son was out trick-or-treating and knocked on the woman’s
door. After hearing the boy’s name, the woman told him to tell his father
she had to talk to him, and when Moody obliged she related her
remarkable story BT

Some NDEs even support Loye’s proposal that several holographic
parallel universes, or time tracks, exist. On occasion NDEers are shown
personal flashforwards and told that the future they have witnessed will
come to pass only if they continue on their current path. In one unique
instance an NTDEer was shown a completely different history of the
earth, a history that would have developed if “certain events” had not
taken place around the time of the Greek philosopher and
mathematician Pythagoras three thousand years ago. The vision
revealed that if these events, the precise nature of which the woman
does not disclose, had failed to take place, we would now be living in a
world of peace and harmony marked “by the absence of religious wars
and of a Christ figure.” 6 * Such experiences suggest that the laws of time
and space operative in a holographic universe may be very strange

Even NDEers who do not experience direct evidence of the role they
play in their own destiny often come back with a firm understanding of
the holographic interconnectedness of all things. As a
sixty-two-year-old businessman who had an NDE during a cardiac
arrest puts

Traveling in the Superhologram


it ” One thing 1 learned was that we are all part of one big, living universe.
If we think we can hurt another person or another living thing without
hurting ourselves we are sadly mistaken. I look at a forest or a flower or
a bird now, and say, ‘That is me, part of me.’ We are connected with all
things and if we send love along those connections, then we are
happy.” 69

You Can Eat but You Don’t Have To

The holographic and mind-created aspects of the near-death dimension
are apparent in myriad other ways. In describing the hereafter one child
said that food appeared whenever she wished for it, but there was no
need to eat, an observation that underscores once again the illusory and
hologramlike nature of afterlife reality. 70 Even the symbolic language of
the psyche is given “objective” form. For example, one of Whitton’s
subjects said that when he was introduced to a woman who was going to
figure prominently in his next life, instead of appearing as a human she
appeared as a shape that was half -rose, half -cobra. After being directed
to figure out the meaning of the symbolism, he realized that he and the
woman had been in love with one another in two other lifetimes.
However, she had also twice been responsible for his death. Thus,
instead of manifesting as a human, the loving and sinister elements of
her character caused her to appear in a hologramlike form that better
symbolized these two dramatically polar qualities. 71

Whitton’s subject is not alone in his experience. Hazrat Inayat Khan
said that when he entered a mystical state and traveled to “divine
realities,” the beings he encountered also occasionally appeared in
half-human, half-animal forms. Like Whitton’s subject, Khan discerned
that these transfigurations were symbolic, and when a being appeared as
part animal it was because the animal symbolized some quality the
being possessed. For example, a being that had great strength might
appear with the head of a lion, or a being that was unusually smart and
crafty might have some of the features of a fox. Khan theorized that this
is why ancient cultures, such as the Egyptian, pictured the gods that rule
the afterlife realm as having animal heads, 72



The propensity near-death reality has for molding itself into holo-
gramlike shapes that mirror the thoughts, desires, and symbols that
populate our minds explains why Westerners tend to perceive the beings
of light as Christian religious figures, why Indians perceive them as
Hindu saints and deities, and so on. The plasticity of the NT) realm
suggests that such outward appearances may be no more or less real than
the food wished into existence by the little girl mentioned above, the
woman who appeared as an amalgam of a cobra and a rose, and the
spectral clothing conjured into existence by the NDEer who was
embarrassed at his own nakedness. This same plasticity explains the
other cultural differences one finds in near-death experiences, such as
why some NDEers reach the hereafter by traveling through a tunnel,
some by crossing a bridge, some by going over a body of water, and some
simply by walking down a road. Again it appears that in a reality created
solely out of interacting thought structures, even the landscape itself is
sculpted by the ideas and expectations of the ex-periencer.

At this juncture an important point needs to be made. As startling and
foreign as the near-death realm seems, the evidence presented in this
book reveals that our own level of existence may not be all that different.
As we have seen, we too can access all information, it is just a little more
difficult for us. We too can occasionally have personal flashforwards
and come face-to-face with the phantasmal nature of time and space.
And we too can sculpt and reshape our bodies, and sometimes even our
reality, according to our beliefs, it just takes us a little more time and
effort. Indeed, Sai Baba’s abilities suggest that we can even materialize
food simply by wishing for it, and Therese Neumann’s inedia offers
evidence that eatbg may ultimately be as unnecessary for us as it is for
individuals in the near-death realm.

In fact, it appears that this reality and the next are different in degree,
but not in kind. Both are hologramlike constructs, realities that are
established, as Jahn and Dunne put it, only by the interaction of
consciousness with its environment. Put another way, our reality
appears to be a more frozen version of the afterlife dimension. It takes a
little more time for our beliefs to resculpt our bodies into things like
nail-like stigmata and for the symbolic language of our psyches to
manifest externally as synchronises. But manifest they do, in a slow and
inexorable river, a river whose persistent presence teaches us that we
live in a universe we are only just beginning to understand.

Traveling in the Superhologram


Information about the Near-Death Realm from
Other Sources

One does not have to be in a life -threatening crisis to visit the afterlife
dimension. There is evidence that the ND realm can also be reached
during OBEs. In his writings, Monroe describes several visits to levels
of reality in which he encountered deceased friends, 73 An even more
skilled out-of-body visitor to the land of the dead was Swedish mystic
Swedenborg. Born in 1688, Swedenborg was the Leonardo da Vinci of
his era. In his early years he studied science. He was the leading
mathematician in Sweden, spoke nine languages, was an engraver, a
politician, an astronomer, and a businessman, built watches and micro-
scopes as a hobby, wrote books on metallurgy, color theory, commerce,
economics, physics, chemistry, mining, and anatomy, and invented
prototypes for the airplane and the submarine.

Throughout all of this he also meditated regularly, and when he
reached middle age, developed the ability to enter deep trances during
which he left his body and visited what appeared to him to be heaven
and conversed with “angels” and “spirits.” That Swedenborg was
experiencing something profound during these journeys, there can be no
doubt. He became so famous for this ability that the queen of Sweden
asked him to find out why her deceased brother had neglected to
respond to a letter she had sent him before his death. Swedenborg
promised to consult the deceased and the next day returned with a
message which the queen confessed contained information only she and
her dead brother knew. Swedenborg performed this service several
times for various individuals who sought his help, and on another
occasion told a widow where to find a secret compartment in her
deceased husband’s desk in which she found some desperately needed
documents. So well known was this latter incident that it inspired the
German philosopher Immanuel Kant to write an entire book on Swe-
denborg entitled Dreams of a Spirit-Seer,

But the most amazing thing about Swedenborg’s accounts of the
afterlife realm is how closely they mirror the descriptions offered by
modern-day NDEers. For example, Swedenborg talks about passing
through a dark tunnel, being met by welcoming spirits, landscapes more
beautiful than any on earth and one where time and space no longer exist,
a dazzling light that emitted a feeling of love, appearing before beings of
light, and being enveloped by an all-encompassing



peace and serenity. He also says that he was allowed to observe
firsthand the arrival of the newly deceased in heaven, and watch as they
were subjected to the life review, a process he called “the opening of the
Book of Lives.” He acknowledged that during the process a person
witnessed “everything they had ever been or done,” but added a unique
twist According to Swedenborg, the information that arose during the
opening of the Book of Lives was recorded in the nervous system of the
person’s spiritual body. Thus, in order to evoke the life review an
“angel” had to examine the individual’s entire body “beginning with the
fingers of each hand, and proceeding through the whole.””

Swedenborg also refers to the holographic thought balls the angels

use to communicate and says that they are no different from the

portrayals he could see in the “wave-substance” that surrounded a

person. Like most NDEers he describes these telepathic bursts of

knowledge as a picture language so dense with information that each

image contains a thousand ideas. A communicated series of these

portrayals can also be quite lengthy and “last up to several hours, in

such a sequential arrangement that one can only marvel.” 76

But even here Swedenborg added a fascinating twist. In addition to

using portrayals, angels also employ a speech that contains concepts that

are beyond human understanding. In fact, the main reason they use

portrayals is because it is the only way they can make even a pale

version of their thoughts and ideas comprehensible to human beings. 77

Swedenborg’s experiences even corroborate some of the less commonly

reported elements of the NDE. He noted that in the spirit world one no

longer needs to eat food, but added that information takes its place as a

source of nourishment™ He said that when spirits and angels talked,

their thoughts were constantly coalescing into three dimensional

symbolic images, especially animals. For example, he said that when

angels talked about love and affection “beautiful animals are presented,

such as lambs — When however the angels are talking about evil

affections, this is portrayed by hideous, fierce, and useless animals, like

tigers, bears, wolves, scorpions, snakes, and mice.” 79 Although it is not a

feature reported by modern NDEers, Swedenborg said that he was

astonished to find that in heaven there are also spirits from other planets,

an astounding assertion for a man who was born over three hundred

years ago! 80 Most intriguing of all are those remarks by Swedenborg that

Traveling in the Superhologram


to refer to reality’s holographic qualities. For instance, he said that
although human beings appear to be separate from one another, we are
all connected in a cosmic unity. Moreover, each of us is a heaven in
miniature, and every person, indeed the entire physical universe, is a
microcosm of the greater divine reality. As we have seen, he also
believed that underlying visible reality was a wave-substance.

In fact, several Swedenborg scholars have commented on the many
parallels between some of Swedenborg’s concepts and Bohm and Pri-
bram’s theory. One such scholar is Dr. George F. Dole, a professor of
theology at the Swedenborg School of Religion in Newton, Massachu-
setts. Dole, who holds degrees from Yale, Oxford, and Harvard, notes
that one of the most basic tenets of Swedenborg’s thinking is that our
universe is constantly created and sustained by two wavelike flows, one
from heaven and one coming from our own soul or spirit. “If we put
these images together, the resemblance to the hologram is striking,”
says Dole. “We are constituted by the intersection of two flows — one
direct, from the divine, and one indirect, from the divine via our
environment. We can view ourselves as interference patterns, because
the inflow is a wave phenomenon, and we are where the waves meet.” 81

Swedenborg also believed that, despite its ghostlike and ephemeral
qualities, heaven is actually a more fundamental level of reality than our
own physical world. It is, he said, the archetypal source from whieh all
earthly forms originate, and to which all forms return, a concept not too
dissimilar from Bohm’s idea of the implicate and explicate orders. In
addition, he too believed that the afterlife realm and physical reality are
different in degree but not in kind, and that the material world is just a
frozen version of the thought-built reality of heaven. The matter that
comprises both heaven and earth “flows in by stages” from the Divine,
said Swedenborg, and “at each new stage it becomes more genera) and
therefore coarser and hazier, and it becomes slower, and therefore more
viscous and colder.” 62

Swedenborg filled almost twenty volumes with his experiences, and
on his deathbed was asked if there was anything he wanted to recant. He
earnestly replied: “Everything that I have written is as true as you now
behold me. I might have said much more had it been permitted to me.
After death you will see all, and then we shall have much to say to each
other on the subject.” 83



The Land of Nonwhere

Swedenborg is not the only individual in history who possessed the
ability to make out-of-body journeys to the subtler levels of reality. The
twelfth-century Persian Sufis also employed deep trancelike meditation
to visit the “land where spirits dwell.” And again, the parallels between
their reports and the body of evidence that has accrued in this chapter
are striking. They claimed that in this other realm one possesses a
“subtle body” and relies on senses that are not always associated with
“specific organs” in that body. They asserted that it is a dimension
populated by many spiritual teachers, or imams, and sometimes called it
“the country of the hidden Imam.”

They held that it is a world created solely out of the subtle matter of
alarn almithal, or thought. Even space itself, including “nearness,”
“distances,” and “far-off” places, was created by thought. But this did
not mean that the country of the hidden Imam was unreal, a world
constituted out of sheer nothingness. Nor was it a landscape created by
only one mind. Rather it was a plane of existence created by the
imagination of many people, and yet one that still had its own
corporeality and dimension) its own forests, mountains, and even cities.
The Sufis devoted a good deal of their writings to the clarification of this
point So alien is this idea to many Western thinkers that the late Henry
Corbin, a professor of Islamic Religion at the Sorbonne in Paris and a
leading authority in Iranian-Islamic thought, coined the term imaginal
to describe it, meaning a world that is created by imagination but is
ontologically no less real than physical reality. “The reason I absolutely
had to find another expression was that, for a good many years, my
profession required me to interpret Arabic and Persian texts, whose
meaning I would undoubtedly have betrayed had I simply contented
myself with the term imaginary, ” stated Corbin. M

Because of the imagina! nature of the afterlife realm, the Sufis
concluded that imagination itself is a faculty of perception, an idea that
offers new light on why Whitton’s subject materialized a hand only after
he started thinking, and why visualizing images has such a potent effect
on the health and physical structure of our bodies. It also contributed to
the Sufis’ belief that one could use visualization, a process they called
“creative prayer,” to alter and reshape the very fabric of one’s destiny.

Traveling in the Superhologram


In a notion that parallels Bohm’s implicate and explicate orders, the
Sufis believed that, despite its phantasmal qualities, the afterlife realm is
the generative matrix that gives birth to the entire physical universe. All
things in physical reality arise from this spiritual reality, said the Sufis.
However, even the most learned among them found this strange, that by
meditating and venturing deep into the psyche one arrived in an inner
world that “turns out to envelop, surround, or contain that which at first
was outer and visible.” 85

This realization is, of course, just another reference to the nonlocal
and holographic qualities of reality. Each of us contains the whole of
heaven. More than that, each of us contains the location of heaven. Or as
the Sufis put it, instead of having to search for spiritual reality “in the
where,” the “where” is in us. Indeed, in discussing the nonlocal aspects
of the afterlife realm, a twelfth-century Persian mystic named
Sohrawardi said that the country of the hidden Imam might better be
called Na-Koja-Abad, “the land of nonwhere.”* 8

Admittedly this idea is not new. It is the same sentiment expressed in
the statement “the kingdom of heaven is within.” What is new is the idea
that such notions are actually references to the nonlocal aspects of the
subtler levels of reality. Again, it is suggested that when a person has an
OBE they might not actually travel anywhere. They might be merely
altering the always illusory hologram of reality so that they have the
experience of traveling somewhere. In a holographic universe not only
is consciousness already everywhere, it too is nonwhere.

The idea that the afterlife realm lies deep in the nonlocal expanse of
the psyche has been allude’d to by some NDEers. As one seven-year-old
boy put it, “Death is like walking into your mind.” S7 Bohm offers a
similarly nonlocal view of what happens during our transition from this
life to the next: “At the present, our whole thought process is telling us
that we have to keep our attention here. You can’t cross the street, for
example, if you don’t. But consciousness is always in the unlimited
depth which is beyond space and time, in the subtler levels of the
implicate order. Therefore, if you went deeply enough into the actual
present, then maybe there’s no difference between this moment and the
next. The idea would be that in the death experience you would get into
that. Contact with eternity is in the present moment, but it is mediated by
thought. It is a matter of attention.” 88



Intelligent and Coordinated Images of Light

The idea that the subtler levels of reality can be accessed through a shift
in consciousness alone is also one of the main premises of the yogic
tradition. Many yogic practices are designed specifically to teach
individuals how to make such journeys. And once again, the individuals
who succeed in these ventures describe what is by now a familiar
landscape. One such individual was Sri Yukteswar Giri, a little known
but widely respected Hindu holy man who died in Puri, India, in 1936.
Evans-Wentz, who met Sri Yukteswar in the 1 920s, described him as a
man of “pleasing presence and high character” fully “worthy of the
veneration that his followers accorded him.” 69

Sri Yukteswar appears to have been especially gifted at passing back
and forth between this world and the next and described the afterlife
dimension as a world composed of “various subtle vibrations of light
and color” and “hundreds of times larger than the materia! cosmos.” He
also said that it was infinitely more beautiful than our own realm of
existence, and abounded with “opal lakes, bright seas, and rainbow
rivers.” Because it is more “vibrant with God’s creative light” its
weather is always pleasant, and its only climatic manifestations are
occasional falls of “luminous white snow and rain of many-colored

Individuals who live in this wondrous realm can materialize any body
they want and can “see” with any area of their body they wish. They can
also materialize any fruit or other food they desire, although they ” are
almost freed from any necessity of eating” and “feast only on the
ambrosia of eternally new knowledge.”

They communicate through a telepathic series of “light pictures,”
rejoice at “the immortality of friendship,” realize “the indestructibility
of love,” feel keen pain “if any mistake is made in conduct or perception
of truth,” and when they are confronted with the multitude of relatives,
fathers, mothers, wives, husbands, and friends acquired during their
“different incarnations on earth,” they are at a loss as to whom to love
especially and thus learn to give “a divine and equal love to all.”

What is the quintessential nature of our reality once we take up
residence in this luminous land? To this question, Sri Yukteswar gave
an answer that was as simple as it was holographic. In this realm where
eating and even breathing are unnecessary, where a single thought can
materialize a “whole garden of fragrant flowers,” and all

Traveling in the SuperholoRram

3 A 3

bodily injuries are “healed at once by mere willing,” we are, quite simply,
“intelligent and coordinated images of light.” 90

More References to Light

Sri Yukteswar is not the only yogic teacher to use such hologramlike
terms when describing the subtler levels of reality. Another is Sri
Aurobindo Ghose, a thinker, political activist, and mystic whom Indians
revere alongside Gandhi. Born in 1872 to an upper-class Indian family,
Sri Aurobindo was educated in England, where he quickly developed the
reputation as a kind of prodigy . He was fluent not only in English, Hindi,
Russian, German, and French, but also in ancient Sanskrit. He could
read a case of books a day (as a youth he read all of the many and
voluminous sacred books of India) and repeat verbatim every word on
every page that he read. His powers of concentration were legendary,
and it was said that he could sit studying in the same posture all night
long, oblivious even to the incessant bites of the mosquitoes.

Like Gandhi, Sri Aurobindo was active in the nationalist movement in
India and spent time in prison for sedition. However, despite all his
intellectual and humanitarian passion, he remained an atheist until one
day when he saw a wandering yogi instantaneously heal his brother of a
life -threatening illness. From that point on Sri Aurobindo devoted his
life to the yogic disciplines and, like Sri Yukteswar, through meditation
he eventually learned to become, in his own words, “an explorer of the
planes of consciousness. ”

It was not an easy task for Sri Aurobindo, and one of the most
intractable obstacles he had to overcome to accomplish his goal was to
learn how to silence the endless chatter of words and thoughts that flow
unceasingly through the normal human mind. Anyone who has ever
tried to empty his or her mind of all thought for even a moment or two
knows how daunting an undertaking this is. But it is also a necessary one,
for the yogic texts are quite explicit on this point. To plumb the subtler
and more implicate regions of the psyche does indeed require a Bohmian
shift of attention. Or as Sri Aurobindo put it, to discover the “new
country within us” we must first learn how “to leave the old one behind. ”

It took Sri Aurobindo years to learn how to silence his mind and



Traveling in the Superhologram


travel inward, but once he succeeded he discovered the same vast
territory encountered by all of the other Marco Polos of the spirit that we
have looked at — a realm beyond space and time, composed of a
“multicolored infinity of vibrations” and peopled by nonphysical beings
so far in advance of human consciousness that they make us look like
children. These beings can take on any form at will, said Sri Aurobindo,
the same being appearing to a Christian as a Christian saint and to an
Indian as a Hindu one, although he stressed that their purpose is not to
deceive, but merely to make themselves more accessible “to a particular
consciousness. ”

According to Sri Aurobindo, in their truest form these beings appear as
“pure vibration.” In his two-volume work, On Yoga, he even likens their
ability to appear as either a form or a vibration, to the wave-particle
duality discovered by “modern science.” Sri Aurobindo also noted that in
this luminous realm one is no longer restricted to taking in information in
a “point-by -point” manner, but can absorb it “in great masses,” and in a
single glance perceive “large extensions of space and time.”

In fact, quite a number of Sri Aurobindo’s assertions are indistin-
guishable from many of Bohm’s and Pribram’s conclusions. He said that
most human beings possess a “mental screen” that keeps us from seeing
beyond “the veil of matter,” but when one learns to peer beyond this veil
one finds that everything is comprised of “different intensities of
luminous vibrations.” He asserted that consciousness is also composed of
different vibrations and believed that all matter is to some degree
conscious. Like Bohm, he even asserted that psychokinesis is a direct
result of the fact that all matter is to some degree conscious. If matter
were not conscious, no yogi could move an object with his mind because
there would be no possibility of contact between the yogi and the object,
Sri Aurobindo says.

Most Bohmian of all are Sri Aurobindo’s remarks about wholeness and
fragmentation. According to Sri Aurobindo, one of the most important
things one learns in “the great and luminous kingdoms of the Spirit,” is
that all separateness is an illusion, and all things are ultimately
interconnected and whole. Again and again in his writings he stressed
this fact, and held that it was only as one descended from the higher
vibrational levels of reality to the lower that a “progressive law of
fragmentation” took over. We fragment things because we exist at a
lower vibration of consciousness and reality, says Sri Aurobindo, and it
is our propensity for fragmentation that keeps us from experiencing

the intensity of consciousness, joy, love, and delight for existence that
are the norm in these higher and more subtle realms.

Just as Bohm believes that it is not possible for disorder to exist in a
universe that is ultimately unbroken and whole, Sri Aurobindo believed
the same was true of consciousness. If a single point of the universe were
totally unconscious, the whole universe would be totally unconscious, he
said, and if we perceive a pebble at the side of the road or a grain of sand
under our fingernail to be lifeless and dead, our perception is again
illusory and brought on only by our somnambulistic inurement with

Like Bohm, Sri Aurobindo’s epiphanic understanding of wholeness
also made him aware of the ultimate relativity of all truths and the
arbitrariness of trying to divide the seamless holomovement up into
“things.” So convinced was he that any attempt to reduce the universe
into absolute facts and unchangeable doctrine only led to distortion that
he was even against religion, and all his life emphasized that the true
spirituality came not from any organization or priesthood, but from the
spiritual universe within:

We must not only cut asunder the snare of the mind and the senses, but
flee also from the snare of the thinker, the snare of the theologian and
the church-builder, the meshes of the Word and the bondage of the Idea.
All these are within us waiting to wall in the spirit with forms; but we
must always go beyond, always renounce the lesser for the greater, the
finite for the Infinite; we must be prepared to proceed from illumination
to illumination, from experience to experience, from soul-state to soul-
state Nor must we attach ourselves even to the truths we hold most

securely, for they are but forms and expressions of the Ineffable who
refuses to limit itself to any form or expression.” 1

But if the cosmos is ultimately ineffable, a farrago of multicolored
vibrations, what are all the forms we perceive? What is physical reality?
It is, said Sri Aurobindo, just “a mass of stable light.” 92

Survival in Infinity

The picture of reality reported by NDEers is remarkably self-consistent
and is corroborated by the testimony of many of the world’s most



talented mystics as well. Even more astonishing is that as breathtaking
and foreign as these subtler levels of reality are to those of us who reside
in the world’s more “advanced” cultures, they are mundane and familiar
territories to so-called primitive peoples.

For example, Dr. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, an anthropologist who
has lived with and studied a community of aborigines in Australia, points
out that the aboriginal concept of the “dreamtime,” a realm that
Australian shamans visit by entering a profound trance, is almost
identical to the afterlife planes of existence described in Western sources.
It is the realm where human spirits go after death, and once there a
shaman can converse with the dead and instantly access all knowledge. It
is also a dimension in which time, space, and the other boundaries of
earthly life cease to exist and one must learn to deal with infinity.
Because of this, Australian shamans often refer to the afterlife as
“survival in infinity.” 311

Holger Kaiweit, a German ethnopsychologist with degrees in both
psychology and cultural anthropology, goes Thero one better. An expert
on shamanism who is also active in near-death research, Kaiweit points
out that virtually all of the world’s shamanic traditions contain
descriptions of this vast and extradimensional realm, replete with
references to the life review, higher spiritual beings who teach and guide,
food conjured up out of thought, and indescribably beautiful meadows,
forests, and mountains. Indeed, not only is the ability to travel into the
afterlife realm the most universal requirement for being a shaman, but
NDEs are often the very catalyst that thrusts an individual into the role.
For instance, the Oglala Sioux, the Seneca, the Siberian Yakut, the South
American Guajiro, the Zulu, the Kenyan Kikuyu, the Korean Mu dang,
the Indonesian Mentawai Islanders, and the Caribou Eskimo — all have
traditions of individuals who became shamans after a life -threatening
illness propelled them headlong into the afterlife realm.

However, unlike Western NDEers for whom such experiences are
disorientingly new, these shamanic explorers appear to have a far vaster
knowledge of the geography of these subtler realms and are often able to
return to them again and again. Why? Kaiweit believes it is because such
experiences are a daily reality for such cultures. Whereas our society
suppresses any thoughts or mention of death and dying, and has
devalued the mystical by defining reality strictly in terms of the material,
tribal peoples still have day-to-day contact with the psychic nature of
reality. Thus, they have a better understanding

Traveling in the Superhologram


of the rules that govern these inner realms, says Kaiweit, and are much
more skilled at navigating their territories. 94

That these inner regions have been well traveled by shamanic peoples
is evidenced by an experience anthropologist Michael Harner had among
the Conibo Indians of the Peruvian Amazon. In 1960 the American
Museum of Natural History sent Harner on a year-long expedition to
study the Conibo, and while there he asked the Amazonian natives to tell
him about their religious beliefs. They told him that if he really wished to
learn, he had to take a shamanic sacred drink made from a
hallucinogenic plant known as ayakuasca, the “soul vine.” He agreed
and after drinking the bitter concoction had an out-of-body experience in
which he traveled a level of reality populated by what appeared to be the
gods and devils of the Conibo’s mythology. He saw demons with
grinning crocodilian heads. He watched as an “energy -essence” rose up
out of his chest and floated toward a dragon-headed ship manned by
Egypti an-style figures with blue-jay heads; and he felt what he thought
was the slow, advancing numbness of his own death.

But the most dramatic experience he had during his spirit journey was
an encounter with a group of winged, dragonlike beings that emerged
from his spine. After they had crawled out of his body, they “projected”
a visual scene in front of him in which they showed him what they said
was the “true” history of the earth. Through a kind of “thought language”
they explained that they were responsible for both the origin and
evolution of all life on the planet. Indeed, they resided not only in human
beings, but in all life, and had created the multitude of living forms that
populates the earth to provide themselves with a hiding place from some
undisclosed enemy in outer space (Harner notes that although the beings
were almost like DNA, at the time, 1961, he knew nothing of DNA).

After this concatenation of visions was over, Harner sought out a blind
Conibo shaman noted for his paranormal talents to talk to him about the
experience. The shaman, who had made many excursions into the spirit
world, nodded occasionally as Harner related the events that had
befallen him, but when he told the old man about the dragonlike beings
and their claim that they were the true masters of the earth, the shaman
smiled with amusement. “Oh, theylre always saying that. But they are
only the Masters of Outer Darkness,” he corrected.

“I was stunned,” says Harner. “What I had experienced was already
familiar to this barefoot, blind shaman. Known to him from his



own explorations of the same hidden world into which I had ventured.”
However, this was not the only shock Harner received. He also recounted
his experience to two Christian missionaries who lived nearby, and was
intrigued when they too seemed to know what he was talking about. After
he finished they told him that some of his descriptions were virtually
identical to certain passages in the Book of Revelation, passages that
Harner, an atheist, had never read. 95 So it seems that the old Conibo
shaman perhaps was not the only individual to have traveled the same
ground Harner later and more falteringly covered. Some of the visions
and “trips to heaven” described by Old and New Testament prophets may
also have been shamanic journeys into the inner realm.

Is it possible that what we have been viewing as quaint folklore and
charming but naive mythology are actually sophisticated accounts of the
cartography of the subtler levels of reality? Kalweit for one believes the
answer is an emphatic yes, “In light of the revolutionary findings of
recent research into the nature of dying and death, we can no longer look
upon tribal religions and their ideas about the World of the Dead as
limited conceptions,” he says, “[Rather] the shaman should be
considered as a most up-to-date and knowledgeable psychologist.” 96

An Undeniable Spiritual Radiance

One last piece of evidence of the reality of the NDE is the transformative
effect it has on those who experience it. Researchers have discovered that
NDEers are almost always profoundly changed by their journey to the
beyond. They become happier, more optimistic, more easygoing, and
less concerned with material possessions. Most striking of all, their
capacity to love expands enormously. Aloof husbands suddenly become
warm and affectionate, workaholics start relaxing and devoting time to
their families, and introverts become extroverts. These changes are often
so dramatic that people who know the NDEer frequently remark that he
or she has become an entirely different person. There are even cases on
record of criminals completely reforming their ways, and
fire-and-brimstone preachers replacing their message of damnation with
one of unconditional love and compassion-

Traveling in the Superhologram


NDEers also become much more spiritually oriented. They return not
only firmly convinced of the immortality of the human soul, but also
with a deep and abiding sense that the universe is compassionate and
intelligent, and this loving presence is always with them. However, this
awareness does not necessarily result in their becoming more religious.
Like Sri Aurobindo, many NDEers stress the importance of the
distinction between religion and spirituality, and assert that it is the latter
that has blossomed into greater fullness in their lives, not the former.
Indeed, studies show that following their experience, NDEers display an
increased openness to ideas outside their own religious background, such
as reincarnation and Eastern religions. 97

This widening of interests frequently extends to other areas as well.
For instance, NDEers often develop a marked fascination for the types of
subjects discussed in this book, in particular psychic phenomena and the
new physics. One NDEer investigated by Ring, for example, was a driver
of heavy equipment who displayed no interest in books or academic
pursuits prior to his experience. However, during his NDE he had a
vision of total knowledge, and although he was unable to recall the
content of the vision after he recovered, various physics’ terms started
popping into his head. One morning not long after his experience he
blurted out the word quantum. Later he announced cryptically, “Max
Planck — you’ll be hearing about him in the near future,” and as time
continued to pass, fragments of equations and mathematical symbols
began to surface in his thoughts.

Neither he nor his wife knew what the word quantum meant, or who
Max Planck {widely viewed as the founding father of quantum physics)
was until the man went to a library and looked the words up. But after
discovering that he was not talking gibberish, he started to read
voraciously, not only books on physics, but also on parapsychology,
metaphysics, and higher consciousness; and he even enrolled in college
as a physics major. The man’s wife wrote a letter to Ring trying to
describe her husband’s transformation:

Many times he says a word he has never heard before in our reality — it
might be a foreign word of a different language — but learns … it in
relationship to the “light” theory. … He talks about things faster than
the speed of light and it’s hard for me to understand — When [he] picks
up a book on physics he already knows the answer and seems to feel





The man also started developing various psychic abilities after his
experience, which is not uncommon among NDEers. In 1982 Bruce
Greyson, a psychiatrist at the University of Michigan and IANDS’s
director of research, gave sixty -nine NDEers a questionnaire designed
to study this issue, and he found that there was an increase in virtually
all of the psychic and psi-related phenomena he assessed.” Phyllis
Atwater, an Idaho housewife who became an NDE researcher follow-
ing her own transformative NDE, has interviewed dozens of NDEers
and has obtained similar findings. “Telepathy and healing gifts are
common,” she states. “So is ‘remembering’ the future. Time and space
stop, and you live in a future sequence in detail. Then, when the event
occurs, you recognize it.” 100

Moody believes that the profound and positive identity changes such
individuals undergo is the most compelling evidence that NDEs are
actually journeys into some spiritual level of reality. Ring agrees. “[At
the core of the NDE] we find an absolute and undeniable spiritual
radiance,” he says. “This spiritual core is so awesome and overwhelm-
ing that the person is at once and forever thrust into an entirely new
mode of being.” 101

NDE researchers are not the only individuals who are beginning to
accept the existence of this dimension and the spiritual component of
the human race. Nobelist Brian Josephson, himself a longtime medita-
tor, is also convinced that there are subtler levels of reality, levels that
can be accessed through meditation and where, quite possibly, one
travels after death. 303

At a 1985 symposium on the possibility of life beyond biological
death held at Georgetown University and convened by U.S. Senator
Claiborne Pell, physicist Paul Davies expressed a similar openness.
“We are all agreed that, at least insofar as human beings are con-
cerned, mind is a product of matter, or put more accurately, mind finds
expression through matter (specifically our brains). The lesson of the
quantum is that matter can only achieve concrete, well-defined exis-
tence in conjunction with mind. Clearly, if mind is pattern rather than
substance, then it is capable of many different representations.'” 05

Even psychoneuroimmunologist Candace Pert, another participant
at the symposium, was receptive to the idea. “I think it is important
to realize that information is stored in the brain, and it is conceivable
to me that this information could transform itself into some other
realm. Where does the information go after the destruction of the
molecules (the mass) that compose it? Matter can neither be created

Traveling in the Superhologram


nor destroyed, and perhaps biological information flow cannot just
disappear at death and must be transformed into another realm,” she

Is it possible that what Bohm has called the implicate level of reality
is actually the realm of the spirit, the source of the spiritual radiance
that has transfigured the mystics of all ages? Bohm himself does not
dismiss the idea. The implicate domain “could equally well be called
Idealism, Spirit, Consciousness,” he states with typical
matter-of-fact-ness. “The separation of the two — matter and
spirit — is an abstraction. The ground is always one.” 10 *

Who Are the Beings of Light?

Because most of the above remarks were made by physicists and not
theologians, one cannot help but wonder if perhaps the interest in new
physics displayed by Fung’s NDEer is an indication of something
deeper. If, as Bohm suggests, physics is beginning to make inroads in
areas that were once exclusively the province of the mystic, is it
possible that these encroachments have already been anticipated by
the beings who inhabit the near-death realm? Is that why NDEers are
given an insatiable hunger for such knowledge? Are they, and by
proxy the rest of the human race, being prepared for some coming
confluence between science and the spiritual?

We will explore this possibility a little later. First, another question
must be asked. If the existence of this higher dimension is no longer
at issue, then what are its parameters? More specifically, who are the
beings that inhabit it, and what is their society, dare one say their
civilization, really like?

These are, of course, difficult questions to answer. When Whitton
tried to find out the identity of the beings who counseled people in the
between-life state, he found the answer elusive. “The impression my
subjects gave — the ones who could answer the question — was that
these were entities who had completed their cycle of incarnations
here,” he says. 106

After hundreds of journeys into the inner realm, and after inter-
viewing dozens of other talented fellow OBEers on the matter,
Monroe has also come up empty-handed. “Whatever they may be,
[these beings] have the ability to radiate a warmth of friendliness that



evokes complete trust,” he observes, “Perceiving our thoughts is absurdly
easy for [them].” And “the entire history of humankind and earth is
available to them in the most minute detail.” But Monroe, too, confesses
ignorance when it comes to the ultimate identity of these nonphysical
entities, save that their first order of business appears to A be “totally
solicitous as to the well-being of the human beings with whom they are
associated.” 107

Not muck more can be said about the civilizations of these subtle
realms, save that individuals who are privileged enough to visit them
universally report seeing many vast and celestially beautiful cities there.
NDEers, yogic adepts, and ayahuasca-using shamans — all describe
these mysterious metropolises with remarkable consistency. The
twelfth-century Sufis were so familiar with them that they even gave
several of them names.

The most notable feature of these great cities is that they are brilliantly
luminous. They are also frequently described as foreign in architecture,
and so sublimely beautiful that, like all of the other features of these
implicate dimensions, words fail to convey their grandeur. In describing
one such city Swedenborg said that it was a place “of staggering
architectural design, so beautiful that you would say this is the home and
the source of the art itself.” 108

People who visit these cities also frequently assert that they have an
unusual number of schools and other buildings associated with the
pursuit of knowledge. Most of Whitton’s subjects recalled spending at
least some time hard at work in vast halls of learning equipped with
libraries and seminar rooms while in the between-life state. 109 Many
NDEers also report being shown “schools,” “libraries,” and “institutions
of higher learning” during their experiences. 110 And one can even find
references to great cities devoted to learning and reachable only by
journeying into “the hidden depths of the mind” in eleventh-century
Tibetan texts. Edwin Bernbaum, a Sanskrit scholar at the University of
California at Berkeley, believes that James Hilton’s novel Lost Horizon,
in which he created the fictional community of Shangri-La, was actually
inspired by one of these Tibetan legends.’ ”

“Throughout my high-school and college years 1 had vivid and frequent dreams that I was
attending classes on spiritual subjects at a strangely beautiful university in some sublime
and otherworldly place. These were not anxiety dreams about going to school, but incredibly
pleasant flying dreams in which I floated weightlessly to lectures on the human energy field
and reincarnation. During these dreams 1 sometimes encountered people I had known in this
life but who had died, and even people who identified themselves aa souls about to be reborn.

Traveling in the Superhofograrn


The only problem is that in an imaginal realm such descriptions don’t
mean very much. One can never be sure whether the spectacular
architectural structures NDEers encounter are realities or just allegorical
phantasms. For instance, both Moody and Ring have reported cases in
which NDEers said that the buildings of higher learning they visited
were not just devoted to knowledge, but were literally built out of
knowledge.”” This curious choice of words suggests that perhaps visits to
these edifices are actually encounters with something so beyond human
conception — perhaps a dynamic living cloud of pure knowledge, or what
information becomes, as Pert puts it, after it has been transformed into
another realm — that translating it into a hologram of a building or library
is the only way the human mind can process it

The same is true of the beings one encounters in the subtler dimensions.
We can never know from their appearance alone what they really are.
For example, George Russell, a well-known turn-of-the-century Irish
seer and an extraordinarily talented OBEer, encountered many “beings
of light” during what he called his journeys into the “inner world. ” When
asked once during an interview to describe what these beings looked like
he stated:

The first of these I saw I remember very clearly, and the manner of its
appearance: mere was at first a dazale of light, and then 1 saw that this
came from the heart of a tall figure with a body apparently shaped out
of half- transparent or opalescent air, and throughout the body ran a
radiant, electrical fire, to which the heart seemed the centre. Around the
head of this being and through its waving luminous hair, which was
blown all about the body like living strands of gold, there appeared
naming wing-like auras. From the being itself light seemed to stream
outwards in every direction; and the effect left on me after the vision was
one of extraordinary lightness, joy ousness, or ecstasy. 113

Intriguingly, I have met several other individuals, usually people with more than normal
psychic ability, who have also had these dreams (one, a talented Texas clairvoyant named
Jim Gordon, was so baffled by the experience that he often asked his nonplussed mother why
he had to go to school twice, once during the day with all the other children, and once at
night while he slept). Tt is relevant to mention here that Monroe and numerous other OBE
researchers believe that flying dreams are actually just poorly remembered OBEs. making
me wonder if perhaps some of us, at least, are visiting these incorporeal schools even while we
are alive. If anyone reading this book has also had such experiences. I would be very
interested in hearing about them.




On the other hand, Monroe asserts that once he has been in the
presence of one of these nonphysical entities for a while, it

h f PercdveS notlung, ajthou^ he contmues to

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asked When a journey er to the inner dimensions encounters a being 01
light, a that being a reality or just an allegorical phantasm? The answer is,
of course, that it is a bit of both, for in a holographic ZTIh” ^tm™ *,,
l]lus ions, hologramlike images con-hS i ,! mteract!ra of the consciousness
present, but illusions oased, as Pribram says, on something that is there.

f ^if if* 3 .”” ‘ * * app T t0 us —p 1 ” 3 * form but always has its source
in something meltable, in the implicate

img meltable, in tne impl
We can take heart in the fact that the hologramlike images our

me wp*«-*n* >edge; we convert lt m to a school or

nv V ?*f 7 DE r r meets a woman TM^whTMh* \ (< T(

ove/hate reIationsh lp , he sees her as half rose, half cobra, a symbol hat

stil conveys the quintessence of her character; and when ££
Z^l^^^l^ m ^™ k “fat nonphysical consciousnesses, they
seeTheni as luminous and. angelic beings

thi\r eni !wl e ‘ yenUy °™- W ^ ‘ a * deduce from their behavior that they

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altll T ~~ fmShed remCA tmg, or something that is
altogether beyond human comprehension. To speculate further would
be presumptuous in that it would not only be tackling a qu sSat
housands of years of human history have failed to resolve but woufd
ak<ngnore Sn Aurobindo’s warning against turning spiriual under
stendmgs mto rehgious ones. As science gathers more evidence
answer will most assuredly become clearer, but until then, the ques
turn of who and what these beings are remains open. q


The Omnijective Universe

tnmlE A . V^^T* ^toDWhw.™ hologramlike
apparitions sculptured by our behets. It appears that on

Traveling in the Superhologram 275

occasion we can even have such experiences at our own level of exis-
tence. For example, philosopher Michael Grosso believes that miracu-
lous appearances of the Virgin Mary may also be hologramlike projec-
tions created by the collective beliefs of the human race. One “Marian”
vision that is especially holographic in flavor is the well-known appear-
ance of the Virgin in Knock, Ireland, in 1879. On that occasion fourteen
people saw three glowing and eerily motionless figures consisting of
Mary, Joseph, and St John the Evangelist (identified because he closely
resembled a statue of the saint in a nearby village) standing in a meadow
next to the local church. These brilliantly luminous figures were so real
that when witnesses approached, they could even read the lettering on a
book St. John was holding. But when one of the women present tried to
embrace the Virgin, her arms closed on empty air. “The figures appeared
so full and lifelike I could not understand why my hands could not feel
what was so plain and distinct to my sight,” the woman later wrote. 115

Another impressively holographic Marian vision is the equally famous
appearance of the Virgin in Zeitoun, Egypt. The sightings began in 1968
when two Moslem automobile mechanics saw a luminous apparition of
Mary standing on the ledge of the central dome of a Coptic church in the
poor Cairo suburb. For the next three years glowing three-dimensional
images of Mary, Joseph, and the Christ Child appeared weekly over the
church, sometimes hovering in midair for as long as six hours.

Unlike the figures at Knock, the Zeitoun apparitions moved about and
waved at the crowds of people who regularly gathered to see them.
However, they too had many holographic aspects. Their appearance was
always heralded by a brilliant flash of light. Like holograms shifting from
their frequency aspects and slowly coming into focus, they were at first
amorphous and slowly coalesced into human shape. They were often
accompanied by doves “formed of pure light” that soared for great
distances over the crowd, but never flapped their wings. Most telling of
all, after three years of manifestations and as interest in the phenomenon
started to wane, the Zeitoun figures also waned, becoming hazier and
hazier until, in their last several appearances, they were little more than
clouds of luminous fog. Nonetheless, during their peak, the figures were
seen by literally hundreds of thousands of witnesses and were
extensively photographed. “I’ve interviewed quite a number of these
people, and when you hear them talk about what they saw you can’t get
rid of the feeling that they’re



describing some sort of holographic projection,” says Grosso. 11 *

In his tiought-provoking book The Final Choice, Grosso says that
after stucying the evidence he is convinced that such visions are not
appearances of the historical Mary, but are actually psychic holographic
projections created by the collective unconscious. Interestingly, notall of
the Marian apparitions are silent. Some, like the manifestations at Fatima
and Lourdes, speak, and when they do their message s invariably a
warning of impending apocalypse if we mortals do no 1 , mend our ways.
Grosso interprets this as evidence that the human collective unconscious
is deeply disturbed by the violent impact modern science has had on
human life and on the ecology of the earth. Our collective dreams are, in
essence, warning us of the possibility of our own self-destruction.

Others nave also agreed that belief in Mary is the motivating force that
causes these projections to coalesce into being. For instance, Rogo points
out that in 1925, while the Coptic church that became the site of tht
Zeitoun manifestations was being built, the philanthropist responsible
for its construction had a dream in which the Virgin told him she would
appear at the church as soon as it was completed. She did not appear at
the prescribed time, but the prophecy was well known in the community.
Thus “there existed a forty-year-old tradition that a Marian visitation
would eventually take place at the church, ” says Rogo. ‘These
preoccupations may have gradually built up a psychic ‘blueprint’ of the
Virgin within the church itself, i.e., an ever-increasing pool of psychic
energy created by the thoughts of the Zeitouniaris which in 1 968 became
so high-pitched that an image of the Virgin Mary burst into physical
reality!” 117 In previous writings I, too, have offered a similar explanation
of Marian visions. : 18

There is evidence that some UFOs may also be some kind of holo-
gramlike phenomenon. When people first started reporting sightings of
what appeared to be spacecraft from other planets in the late 1940s,
researchers who delved deeply enough into the reports to realize that at
least some of them had to be taken seriously assumed that they were
exactly what they appeared to be — glimpses of intelligently guided crafts
from more advanced and probably extraterrestrial civilizations. However,
as encounters with UFOs become more widespread — especially those
involving contact with UFO occupants — and data accumulates, it
becomes increasingly apparent to many researchers that these so-called
spacecraft are not extraterrestrial in origin.

Some of the features of the phenomenon that indicate they are not

Traveling in the Super-hologram


extraterrestrial include the following: First, there are too many sightings;
literally thousands of encounters with UFOs and their occupants have
been documented, so many that it is difficult to believe they could all be
actual visits from other planets. Second, UFO occupants often do not
possess traits one would expect in a truly extraterrestrial Hfeform; too
many of them are described as humanoid beings who breathe our air,
display no fear of contracting earthly viruses, are well adapted to the
earth’s gravity and the sun’s electromagnetic emissions, display
recognizable emotions in their faces, and talk our language — all of which
are possible but unlikely traits in truly extraterrestrial visitors.

Third, they do not behave as extraterrestrial visitors. Instead of making
the proverbial landing on the White House lawn, they appear to farmers
and stranded motorists. They chase jets but don’t attack. They dart
around in the sky allowing dozens and sometimes hundreds of witnesses
to see them, but they show no interest in making any formal contact. And
often, when they contact individuals their behavior still seems illogical.
For instance, one of the most commonly reported types of contact is that
which involve some sort of medical examination. And yet, arguably, a
civilization that possesses the technological capability to travel almost
incomprehensible tracts of outer space would most assuredly possess the
scientific wherewithal to obtain such information without any physical
contact at alt or, at the very least, without having to abduct the scores of
people who appear to be legitimate victims of this mysterious

Finally, and most curious of all, UFOs do not even behave as physical
objects do. They have been watched on radar screens to make instant
ninety-degree-angle turns while traveling at enormous speeds — an antic
that would rip a physical object apart They can change size, instantly
vanish into nothingness, appear out of nowhere, change color, and even
change shape (traits that are also displayed by their occupants). In short,
their behavior is not at all what one would expect from a physical object,
but of something quite different, something with which we have become
more than a little familiar in this book. As astrophysicist Dr. Jacques
Vallee, one of the world’s most respected UFO researchers and the model
for the character LaCombe in the film Close Encounters of the Third
Kind, stated recently, “It is the behavior of an image, or a holographic
projection.” 11 *

As the nonphysical and hologramlike qualities of UFOs become
increasingly apparent to researchers, some have concluded that rather



than being from other star systems, UFOs are actually visitors from other
dimensions, or levels of reality (it is important to note that not all
researchers agree with this point of view, and some remain convinced
that UFOs are extraterrestrial in origin). However, this explanation still
does not adequately explain many of the other bizarre aspects of the
phenomenon, such as why UFOs aren’t making formal contact, why they
behave so absurdly, and so on.

Indeed, the inadequacy of the extra dimensional explanation, at least
in the terms in which it was initially couched, only becomes more
glaring as still further unusual aspects of the UFO phenomenon come
into focus. One of the more baffling of these is growing evidence that
UFO encounters are less of an objective experience and more of a
subjective, or psychological, one. For instance, the well-known “inter-
rupted journey” of Betty and Barney Hill, one of the most thoroughly
documented UFO abduction cases on record, seems as if it were an
actual alien contact in all ways except one: the commander of the UFO
was dressed in a Nazi uniform, a fact that does not make sense if the
Hills’ abductors were truly visitors from an alien civilization, but it does
if the event was psychological in nature and more akin to a dream or
hallucination, experiences that often contain obvious symbols and
disconcerting flaws in logic. 120

Other UFO encounters are even more surreal and dreamlike in
character, and in the literature one can find cases in which UFO entities
sing absurd songs or throw strange objects (such as potatoes) at
witnesses; cases that start out as straightforward abductions aboard
spacecraft but end up as hallucinogenic journeys through a series of
Dantesque realities; and cases in which humanoid aliens shapeshift into
birds, giant insects, and other phantasmagoric creatures.

As early as 1959, and even before much of this evidence was in, the
psychological and archetypal component of the UFO phenomenon in-
spired Carl Jung to propose that “flying saucers” were actually a product
of the collective human unconscious and a kind of modern myth in the
making. In 1969, and as the mythic dimension of UFO experiences
became even clearer, Vallee took the observation a step further. In his
landmark book Passport to Magonia he points out that, far from being a
new phenomenon, UFOs actually appear to be a very old phenomenon in
a new guise and greatly resemble various folkloric traditions, from
descriptions of elves and gnomes in European countries to medieval
accounts of angels to the supernatural beings described in Native
American legends.

Traveling in the Superhologram


The absurd behavior of UFO entities is the same as the mischievous
behavior of elves and fairies in Celtic legends, the Norse gods, and the
trickster figures among the Native Americans, says Vallee. When
stripped to their underlying archetypes, all such phenomena are part of
the same vast, pulsating something, a something that changes its
appearance to suit the culture and time period in which it manifests, but
that has been with the human race for a long, long time. What is that
something? In Passport to Magonia Vallee provides no substantive
answer and says only that it appears to be intelligent, timeless, and to be
the phenomenon on which all myths are based. 12 ‘

What, then, are UFOs and related phenomena? In Passport to Ma-
gonia Vallee says that we cannot rule out the possibility that they are the
expression of some extraordinarily advanced nonhuman intelligence, an
intelligence so beyond us that its logic appears to us only as absurdity.
But if this is true, how are we to explain the conclusions of mythology
experts from Mircea Eliade to Joseph Campbell that myths are an
organic and necessary expression of the human race, as inevitable a
human by-product as language and art? Can we really accept that the
collective human psyche is so barren and jejune that it developed myths
only as a response to another intelligence?

And yet, if UFOs and related phenomena are merely psychic projections,
how are we to explain the physical traces they leave behind, the burnt
circles and deep impressions found at the sites of landings, the
unmistakable tracks they make on radar screens, and the scars and
incision marks they leave on the people on whom they perform their
medical examinations? In an article published in 1976,1 proposed that
such phenomena are difficult to categorize because we are trying to
hammer them into a picture of reality that is fundamentally incorrect,
Given that quantum physics has shown us that mind and matter are
inextricably linked, I suggested that UFOs and related phenomena are
further evidence of this ultimate lack of division between the
psychological and physical worlds. They are indeed a product of the
collective human psyche, but they are also quite real. Put another way,
they are something the human race has not yet learned to comprehend
properly, a phenomenon that is neither subjective nor objective but
“omnijective” — a term I coined to refer to this unusual state of existence
(I was unaware at the time that Corbin had already coined the term
imaginal to describe the same blurred status of reality, only in the context
of the mystical experiences of the Sufis). This point of view has become
increasingly prevalent among re-



searchers. In a recent article Ring argues that UFO encounters are
imaginal experiences and are similar not only to the confrontations with
the real but mind-created world individuals experience during NDEs, but
also to the mythic realities shamans encounter during journeys through
the subtler dimensions. They are, in short, further evidence that reality is
a multilayered and mind-generated hologram. 123

“I’m finding that I’m drawn more and more to points of view that allow
me not only to acknowledge and honor the reality of these different
experiences, but also to see the connections between realms that, for the
most part, have been studied by different categories of scholars,” states
Ring. “Shamanism tends to be thrown into anthropology. UFOs tend to
be thrown into whatever ufology is. NDEs are studied by
parapsychologists and medical people. And Stan Grof studies
psychedelic experiences from a transpersonai psychology perspective. I
think there’s good reason to hope that the imaginal can be, and the
holographic might still prove to be, perspectives that can allow one to see
not the identities, but the linkages and commonalities between these
different types of experiences.” lA So convinced is Ring of the profound
relationship among these at first seemingly disparate phenomena that he
has recently obtained a grant to do a comparative study on people who
have had UFO encounters and people who have had NDEs.

Dr. Peter 5 1 Rojcewicz, a folklorist at the Juilliard School in New York
City, has also concluded that UFOs are omnijective. In fact, he believes
the time has come for folklorists to realize that probably all of the
phenomena discussed by Vallee in Passport to Magonia are as real as
they are symbolic of processes deep in the human psyche. “There exists a
continuum of experiences where reality and imagination imperceptibly
flow into each other,” he states. Rojcewicz acknowledges that this
continuum is further evidence of the Bohmian unity of all things and
feels that, in tight of the evidence that such phenomena are
imaginal/omnijective, it is no longer defensible for folklorists to treat
them simply as beliefs. 125

Numerous other researchers, including Vallee, Grosso, and Whitley
Strieber, author of the bestselling book Communion and one of the most
famous and articulate victims of a UFO abduction, have also
acknowledged the seeming omnijective nature of the phenomenon. As
Strieber states, encounters with UFO beings “may be our first true
quantum discovery in the large-scale world: The very act of observing

Traveling in the Superhologram


it may be creating it as a concrete actuality, with sense, definition, and a
consciousness of its own.” 126

In short, there is growing agreement among researchers of this
mysterious phenomenon that the imaginal is not confined to the afterlife
realm, but has spilled over into the seeming solidity of our
sticks-and-stones world. No longer confined to the visions of shamans,
the old gods have sailed their celestial barks right up to the doorstep of
the computer generation, only instead of dragon-headed ships their
vessels are spaceships, and they have traded in their blue-jay heads for
space helmets. Perhaps we should have anticipated this spillover long
ago, this merging of the Land of the Dead with our own realm, for as
Orpheus, the poet-musician of Greek mythology, once warned, “The
gates of Pluto must not be unlocked, within is a people of dreams.”

As significant as this realization is — that the universe is not objective but
omnijective, that just beyond the pale of our own safe neighborhood lies a
vast otherness, a numinous landscape (more properly a mindscape) as
much a part of our own psyche as it is terra incognita — it still does not shed
light on the deepest mystery of all. As Carl Raschke, a faculty member in
the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Denver, notes, “In
the omnijective cosmos, where UFOs have their place alongside quasars
and salamanders, the issue of the veridical, or hallucinatory, status of
glowing, circular appari- -tions, becomes moot. The problem is not
whether they exist, or in what sense they exist, but what ultimate aim they

ii 127


In other words, what is the final identity of these beings? Again, as
with entities encountered in the near-death realm, there are no clear-cut
answers. On one end of the spectrum, researchers such as Ring and
Grosso lean toward the idea that, despite their impingements in the world
of matter, they are more psychic projection than nonhuman intelligence.
Grosso, for instance, thinks that, like Marian visions, they are further
evidence that the psyche of the human race is in a state of unrest. As he
states, “UFOs and other extraordinary phenomena are manifestations of
a disturbance in the collective unconscious of the human species.” 128

On the other end of the spectrum are those researchers who maintain
that, despite their archetypal characteristics, UFOs are more alien
intelligence than psychic projection. For example, Raschke believes that
UFOs are “a holographic materialization from a conjugate dimension of
the universe” and that this interpretation “certainly must take precedence
over the psychic projection hypothesis, which flounders



when one examines thoughtfully the astounding, vivid, complex, and
consistent features of the ‘aliens’ and their ‘spaceships’ described by
abductees.” 129

Vallee is also in this camp: “I believe that the UFO phenomenon is
one of the ways through which an alien form of intelligence of incred-
ible complexity is communicating with us symbolically. There is no
indication that it is extraterrestrial. Instead, there is mounting evidence
that it. .. [comes from] other dimensions beyond spacetime; from a
multiverse which is all around us, and of which we have stubbornly
refused to consider in spite of the evidence available to us for
centuries.” 130

As for my own feelings, I believe that probably no single explanation
can account for all of the varied aspects of the UFO phenomenon. Given
the apparent vastness of the subtler levels of reality, it is easy for me to
believe that there are no doubt countless nonphysical species in the
higher vibratory realms. Although the abundance of UFO sightings may
bode against their being extraterrestrial — given the obstacle posed by
the immense interstellar distances separating the Earth from the other
stars in the galaxy — in a holographic universe, a universe in which there
may be an infinity of realities occupying the same space as our own
world, it ceases not only to be a sticking point, but may in fact be
evidence of just how unfathomably abundant with intelligent life the
superhologram is.

The truth is that we simply do not have the information necessary to
assess how many nonphysical species are sharing our own space.
Although the physical cosmos may turn out to be an ecological Sahara,
the spaceless and timeless expanses of the inner cosmos may be as rich
with life as the rain forest and the coral reef. After all, research into
NDEs and shamanic experiences has so far taken us only just inside the
borders of this cloud-shrouded realm. We do not yet know how large its
continents are or how many oceans and mountain ranges it contains.

And if we are being visited by beings who are as insubstantial and
plastic in form as the bodies OBEers find themselves in after they have
exteriorized, it is not at all surprising that they might appear in a
chameieonlike multitude of shapes. In fact, their actual appearance may
be so beyond our comprehension that it may be our own hoU>
graphically organized minds that give them these shapes. Just as we
convert the beings of light encountered during NDEs into religious
historical personages, and clouds of pure information into libraries

Traveling in the Superhologram


and institutions of learning, our minds may also be sculpting the
outward appearance of the UFO phenomenon.

It is interesting to note that if this is the case, it means that the true
reality of these beings is apparently so transmundane and strange that we
have to plumb the deepest regions of our folk memories and
mythological unconscious to find the necessary symbols to give them
form. It also means that we must be exceedingly careful in interpreting
their actions. For example, the medical examinations that are the
centerpiece of so many UFO abductions may be only a symbolic repre-
sentation of what is going on. Rather than probing our physical bodies,
these nonphysical intelligences actually may be probing some portion of
us for which we currently have no labels, perhaps the subtle anatomy of
our energy selves or even our very souls. Such are the problems one
faces if the phenomenon is indeed an omnijective manifestation of a
nonhuman intelligence.

On the other hand, if it is possible for the faith of the citizens of Knock
and Zeitoun to cause luminous images of the Virgin to coalesce into
existence, for the minds of physicists to dabble around with the reality of
the neutrino, and for yogis such as Sai Baba to materialize physical
objeets out of thin air, it only stands to reason that we would also find
ourselves awash with holographic projections of our beliefs and
mythologies. At least some anomalous experiences may fall into this

For instance, history tells us that Constantine and his soldiers saw an
enormous flaming cross in the sky, a phenomenon that seems to be
nothing more than a psychic exteriorization of the emotions the army
responsible for nothing short of the Christianization of the pagan world
was feeling on the eve of their historic undertaking. The well-known
manifestation of the Angels of Mons, in which hundreds of World War I
British soldiers saw an immense apparition of Saint George and a
squadron of angels in the sky while fighting what was at first a losing
battle at the front, in Mons, Belgium, also appears to fall into the
category of psychic projection.

It is clear to me that what we are calling UFO and other folkloric
experiences are really a wide range of phenomena and probably include
all of the above. I have also long been of the opinion that these two
explanations are not mutually exclusive. It may be that Constan A tine’s
flaming cross was also a manifestation of an extradimensiona)
intelligence. In other words, when our collective beliefs and emotions
become high-pitched enough to create a psychic projection, perhaps



what we are really doing is opening a doorway between this world and
the next. Perhaps the only time these intelligences can appear and
interact with us is when our own potent beliefs create a kind of psychic
niche for them.

Another concept from the new physics may be relevant here. After
acknowledging that consciousness is the agent that allows a subatomic
particle such as an electron to pop into existence, we should not
therefore jump to the conclusion that we are the sole agents in this
creative process, cautions University of Texas physicist John Wheeler.
We are creating subatomic particles and hence the entire universe, says
Wheeler, but they are also creating us. Each creates the other in what he
calls a ” self -reference cosmology.” 131 Seen in this light, UFO entities
may very well be archetypes from the collective unconscious of the
human race, but we may also be archetypes in their collective
unconscious. We may be as much a part of their deep psychic processes
as they are of ours. Strieber has also echoed this point and says that the
universe of the beings who abducted him and our own are “spinning
each other together” in an act of cosmic communion. 132

The spectrum of events we are lumping into the broad category of UFO
encounters may also include phenomena with which we are not even yet
familiar. For instance, researchers who believe the phenomenon is some
kind of psychic projection invariably assume that it is a projection of the
collective human mind. However, as we have seen in this book, in a
holographic universe we can no longer view consciousness as confined
solely to the brain. The fact that Carol Dryer was able to communicate
with my spleen and tell me that it was upset because I had yelled at it
indicates that other organs in our body also possess their own unique
forms of mentality. Psychoneuroimmunologists say the same about the
cells in our immune system, and according to Bohm and other physicists,
even subatomic particles possess this trait. As outlandish as it sounds,
some aspects of UFOs and related phenomena may be projections of
these collective mentalities. Certain features of Michael Harner’s
encounter with the dragonlike beings certainly suggest that he was
confronting a kind of visuai manifestation of the intelligence of the DNA
molecule. In this same vein Strieber has suggested the possibility that
UFO beings are what “the force of evolution looks like when it’s applied
to a conscious mind.” 1 ™ We must remain open to all of these
possibilities. In a universe that is conscious right down to its very depths,
animals, plants, even matter itself may all be participating in the creation
of these phenomena.

Traveling in the Superhologram


One thing that we do know is that in a holographic universe, a universe
in which separateness ceases to exist and the innermost processes of the
psyche can spill over and become as much a part of the objective
landscape as the flowers and the trees, reality itself becomes little more
than a mass shared dream. In the higher dimensions of existence, these
dreamlike aspects become even more apparent, and indeed numerous
traditions have commented on this fact. The Tibetan Book of the Dead
repeatedly stresses the dreamlike nature of the afterlife realm, and this is
also, of course, why the Australian aborigines refer to it as the dreamtime.
Once we accept this notion, that reality at all levels is omnijective and has
the same ontological status as a dream, the question becomes, Whose
dream is it?

Of the religious and mythological traditions that address this question,
most give the same answer, It is the dream of a single divine intelligence,
of God. The Hindu Vedas and yogic texts assert again and again that the
universe is God’s dream. In Christianity the sentiment is summed up in
the oft repeated saying, we are all thoughts in the mind of God, or as the
poet Keats put it, we are all part of God’s “long immortal dream.”

But are we being dreamed by a single divine intelligence, by God, or
are we being dreamed by the collective consciousness of all things — by
all the electrons, 2 particles, butterflies, neutron stars, sea cucumbers,
human and nonhuman intelligences in the universe? Here again we
collide headlong into the bars of our own conceptual limitations, for in a
holographic universe this question is meaningless. We cannot ask if the
part is creating the whole, or the whole is creating the part because the
part, is the whole. So whether we call the collective consciousness of all
things “God,” or simply “the consciousness of all things,” it doesn’t
change the situation. The universe is sustained by an act of such
stupendous and ineffable creativity that it simply cannot be reduced to
such terms. Again it is a self -reference cosmology. Or as the Kalahari
Bushmen so eloquently put it, “The dream is dreaming itself.”

Return to the Dreamtime

Only human beings have come to a point where they no longer
know why they exist. They don’t use their brains and they have
forgotten the secret knowledge of therr bodies, their senses, or
their dreams. They don’t use the knowledge the spirit has put into
every one of them; they are not even aware of this, and so they
stumble along blindly on the rood to nowhere — a paved highway
which they themselves bulldoze and make smooth so that they
can get faster to the big empty hole which they’ll find at the end,
waiting to swallow them up. It’s a quick comfortable
superhighway, but I know where it leads to. I’ve seen it. I’ve been
there in my vision and it makes me shudder to think about it.

— the Lakota shaman Lame Deer
Lame Deer Seeker of Visions

Where does the holographic model go from here? Before examining
the possible answers, we might want to see where the question has
been before. In this book I have referred to the holographic concept
as a new theory, and this is true in the sense that it is the first time it
has been presented in a scientific context. But as we have seen,
several aspects of this theory have already been foreshadowed in
various ancient traditions. They are not the only such foreshadowings,
which is intriguing, for it suggests that others have also found reason


Return to the Dreamtime


to view the universe as holographic, or at least to intuit its holographic

For example, Bohm’s idea that the universe can be viewed as the
compound of two basic orders, the implicate and the explicate, can be
found in many other traditions. The Tibetan Buddhists call these two
aspects the void and nonvoid. The nonvoid is the reality of visible
objects. The void, like the implicate order, is the birthplace of all things
in the universe, which pour out of it in a “boundless flux.” However,
only the void is real and all forms in the objective world are illusory,
existing merely because of the unceasing flux between the two or-
ders. 1

In turn, the void is described as “subtle,” “indivisible,” and “free
from distinguishing characteristics.” Because it is seamless totality it
eannot be described in words. 2 Properly speaking, even the nonvoid
cannot be described in words because it, too, is a totality in which
consciousness and matter and all other things are indissoluble and
whole. Herein lies a paradox, for despite its illusory nature the nonvoid
still contains “an infinitely vast complex of universes.” And yet its
indivisible aspects are always present. As the Tibet scholar John
Blo-feld states, “In a universe thus composed, everything
interpenetrates, and is interpenetrated by, everything else; as with the
void, so with the non-void — the part is the whole.” 8

The Tibetans prefigured some of Pribram’s thinking as well. Accord-
ing to Milarepa, an eleventh-century Tibetan yogin and the most re-
nowned of the Tibetan Buddhist saints, the reason we are unable to
perceive the void directly is because our unconscious mind (or, as
Milarepa puts it, our “inner consciousness”) is far too “conditioned”
in its perceptions. This conditioning not only keeps us from seeing
what he calls “the border between mind and matter,” or what we
would call the frequency domain, but also causes us to form a body
for ourselves when we are in the between-life state and no longer have
a body. “In the invisible realm of the heavens … the illusory mind is
the great culprit,” writes Milarepa, who counseled his disciples to
practice “perfect seeing and contemplation” in order to realize this
“Ultimate Reality.” 4

Zen Buddhists also recognize the ultimate indivisibility of reality,
and indeed the main objective of Zen is to learn how to perceive this
wholeness. In their book Games Zen Masters Play, and in words that
could have been lifted right from one of Bohm’s papers, Robert Sohl
and Audrey Carr state, “To confuse the indivisible nature of reality



with the conceptual pigeonholes of language is the basic ignorance
from which Zen seeks to free us. The ultimate answers to existence
are not to be found in intellectual concepts and philosophies, however
sophisticated, but rather in a level of direct nonconceptual experience
[of reality].” 5

The Hindus call the implicate level of reality Brahman. 6 Brahman
is formless but is the birthplace of all forms in visible reality, which
appear out of it and then enfold back into it in endless flux. 7 Like
Bohm, who says that the implicate order can just as easily be called
spirit, the Hindus sometimes personify this level of reality and
say -that it is composed of pure consciousness. Thus, consciousness is
not only a subtler form of matter, but it is more fundamental than
matter; and in the Hindu cosmogony it is matter that has emerged from
consciousness, and not the other way around. Or as the Vedas put it,
the physical world is brought into being through both the “veiling” and
“projecting” powers of consciousness.”

Because the material universe is only a second-generation reality,
a creation of veiled consciousness, the Hindus say that it is transitory
and unreal, or maya. As the Svetasvatara Upanishad states, “One
should know that Nature is illusion (maya), and that Brahman is the
illusion maker. This whole world is pervaded with beings that are
parts of him.” 9 Similarly, the Kena Upanishad says that Brahman is
an uncanny something “which changes its form every moment from
human shape to a blade of grass.” 1

Because everything unfolds out of the irreducible totality of Brah-
man, the world is also a seamless whole, say the Hindus, and it is again
maya that keeps us from realizing there is ultimately no such thing
as separateness. “Maya severs the united consciousness so that the
object is seen as other than the self and then as split up into the
multitudinous objects in the universe,” says the Vedic scholar Sir John
Woodroffe. “And there is such objectivity as long as [humanity’s]
consciousness is veiled or contracted. But in the ultimate basis of
experience the divergence has gone, for in it lie, in undifferentiated
mass, experiencer, experience, and the experienced.” 11

This same concept can be found in Judaic thought. According to
Kabbalistic tradition “the entire creation is an iilusory projection of
the transcendental aspects of God,” says Leo Schaya, a Swiss expert
on the Kabbalah. However, despite its illusory nature, it is not com-
plete nothingness, “for every reflection of reality, even remote broken
up and transient, necessarily possesses something of its cause.” 2 The

Return to the Dreamtime


idea that the creation set into motion by the God of Genesis is an
illusion is reflected even in the Hebrew language, for as the Zohar, a
thirteenth-century Kabbalistic commentary on the Torah and the most
famous of the esoteric Judaic texts, notes, the verb baro, “to create,”
implies the idea of “creating an illusion.” 13

There are many holographic concepts in shamanistic thinking as
well. The Hawaiian kahunas say that everything in the universe is
infinitely interconnected and that this interconnectivity can almost be
thought of as a web. The shaman, recognizing the interconnectedness
of all things, sees himself at the center of this web and thus capable of
affecting every other part of the universe (it is interesting to note that
the concept of maya is also frequently likened to a web in Hindu
thought). – 1

Like Bohm, who says that consciousness always has its source in the
implicate, the aborigines believe that the true source of the mind is in
the transcendent reality of the dreamtime. Normal people do not real-
ize this and believe that their consciousness is in their bodies. How-
ever, shamans know this is not true, and that is why they are able to
make contact with the subtler levels of reality. 15

The Dogon people of the Sudan also believe that the physical world
is the product of a deeper and more fundamental level of reality and
is perpetually flowing out of and then streaming back into this more
primary aspect of existence. As one Dogon elder described it, “To
draw up and then return what one had drawn — that is the life of the
world.” 16

In fact, the implicate/explicate idea can be found in virtually all
shamanic traditions. States Douglas Sharon in his book Wizard of the
Four Winds: A Shaman’s Story: “Probably the central concept of
shamanism, wherever in the world it is found, is the notion that under-
lying all the visible forms in the world, animate and inanimate, there
exists a vital essence from which they emerge and by which they are
nurtured. Ultimately everything returns to this ineffable, mysterious,
impersonal unknown.” 1

The Candle and the Laser

Certainly one of the most fascinating properties of a piece of holo-
graphic film is the nonlocal way an image is distributed in its surface.



As we have seen, Bohm believes the universe itself is also organized in
this manner and employs a thought experiment involving a fish and two
television monitors to explain why he believes the universe is similarly
nonlocal. Numerous ancient thinkers also appear to have recognized, or
at least intuited, this aspect of reality. The twelfth-century Sufis summed
it up by saying simply that “the macrocosm is the microcosm,” a kind of
earlier version of Blake’s notion of seeing the world in a grain of sand. 18
The Greek philosophers Anaximenes of Miletus, Pythagoras, Heraclitus,
and Plato; the ancient Gnostics; the pre-Christian Jewish philosopher
Philo Jndaeus; and the medieval Jewish philosopher Maimonides — all
embraced the macrocosm-microcosm idea.

After a shamanic vision of the subtler levels of reality the
semimyth-ical ancient Egyptian prophet Hermes Trismegistus employed
a slightly different phrasing and said that one of the main keys to knowl-
edge was the understanding that “the without is like the within of things;
the small is like the large.” 13 The medieval alchemists, for whom
Hermes Trismegistus became a kind of patron saint, distilled the
sentiment into the motto “As above, so below.” In talking about the same
macrocosm-equals-microcosm idea the Hindu Visvasara Tan-tra uses
somewhat cruder terms and states simply, “What is here is elsewhere.” 20

The Oglala Sioux medicine man Black Elk put an even more nonlocal
twist on the same concept. While standing on Harney Peak in the Black
Hills he witnessed a “great vision” during which he “saw more than I can
tell and I understood more than I saw; for I was seeing in a sacred
manner the shapes of all things in the spirit, and the shape of all shapes
as they must live together as one being.” One of the most profound
understandings he came away with after this encounter with the
ineffable was that Harney Peak was the center of the world. However,
this distinction was not limited to Harney Peak, for as Black Elk put it,
“Anywhere is the center of the world.” 21 Over twenty -five centuries
earlier the Greek philosopher Empedocles brushed up against the same
sacred otherness and wrote that “God is a circle whose center is
everywhere, and its circumference nowhere. 1 ‘” –

Not content with mere words, some ancient thinkers resorted to even
more elaborate analogies in their attempt to communicate the
holographic properties of reality. To this end the author of the Hindu
Avatamsaka Sutra likened the universe to a legendary network of

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pearls said to hang over the palace of the god Indra and “so arranged that
if you look at one [pearl], you see all the others reflect in it” As the
author of the Sutra explained, “In the same way, each object in the world
is not merely itself, but involves every other object and, in fact, is
everything else.” 23

Fa-Tsang, the seventh-century founder of the Hua-yen school of
Buddhist thought, employed a remarkably similar analogy when trying
to communicate the ultimate interconnectedness and interpenetra-tion of
all things. Fa-Tsang, who held that the whole cosmos was implicit in
each of its parts (and who also believed that every point in the cosmos
was its center), likened the universe to a multidimensional network of
jewels, each one reflecting all others ad infinitum. 24

When the empress Wu announced that she did not understand what
Fa-Tsang meant by this image and asked him for further clarification,
Fa-Tsang suspended a candle in the middle of a room full of mirrors.
This, he told the empress Wu, represented the relationship of the One to
the many. Then he took a polished crystal and placed it in the center of
the room so that it reflected everything around it. This, he said, showed
the relationship of the many to the One. However, like Bohm, who
stresses that the universe is not simply a hologram but a holo-movement,
Fa-Tsang stressed that his model was static and did not reflect the
dynamism and constant movement of the cosmic interrelat-edness
among all things in the universe. 26

In short, long before the invention of the hologram, numerous thinkers
had already glimpsed the nonlocal organization of the universe and had
arrived at their own unique ways to express this insight. It is worth
noting that these attempts, crude as they may seem to those of us who are
more technologically sophisticated, may have been far more important
than we realize. For instance, it appears that the seventeenth-century
German mathematician and philosopher Leibniz was familiar with the
Hua-yen school of Buddhist thought. Some have argued that this was
why he proposed that the universe is constituted out of fundamental
entities he called “monads,” each of which contains a reflection of the
whole universe. What is significant is that Leibniz also gave the world
integral calculus, and it was integral calculus that enabled Dennis Gabor
to invent the hologram.



The Future of the Holographic Idea

And so an ancient idea, an idea that seems to find at least some
expression in virtually all of the world’s philosophical and metaphysical
traditions, comes full circle. But if these ancient understandings can lead
to the invention of the hologram, and the invention of the hologram can
lead to Bohm and Pribram’s formulation of the holographic model, to
what new advances and discoveries might the holographic model lead?
Already there are more possibilities on the horizon.


Drawing on Pribram’s holographic model of the brain, Argentinian
physiologist Hugo Zuccarelli recently developed a new recording
tech-nique that allows one to create what amounts to holograms made
out of sound instead of light. Zuccarelli bases his technique on the
curious fact that the human ears actually emit sound. Realizing that these
naturally occurring sounds were the audio equivalent of the “reference
laser” used to recreate a holographic image, he used them as the basis for
a revolutionary new recording technique that reproduces sounds that are
even more realistic and three-dimensional than those produced through
the stereo process. He calls this new kind of sound “holophonic sound. ” 26
After listening to one of Zuccarelli’s holophonic recordings, a reporter
for the Times of London wrote recently, “I stole a look at the reassuring
numbers on my watch to make sure where I was. People

approached from behind me where I knew there was only wall By

the end of seven minutes I was getting the impression of figures, the
embodiment of the voices on the tape. It is a multidimensional ‘picture’
created by sound.” 27

Because Zuccarelli’s technique is based on the brain’s own holo-
graphic way of processing sound, it appears to be as successful at fooling
the ear as light holograms are at fooling the eyes. As a result, listeners
often move their feet when they hear a recording of someone walking in
front of them, and move their heads when they hear what sounds like a
match being lit too near to their face (some reportedly -even smelt the
match). Remarkably, because a holophonic recording has nothing to do
with conventional stereophonic sound, it maintains

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its eerie three-dimensionality even when one listens to it through only
one side of a headphone. The holographic principles involved also
appear to explain why people who are deaf in one ear can still locate the
source of a sound without moving their heads.

A number of major recording artists, including Paul McCartney, Peter
Gabriel, and Vangelis, have approached Zuccarelli about his process, but
because of patent considerations he has not yet disclosed the information
necessary for a full understanding of his technique.*


Chemist Ilya Prigogine recently noted that Bohm’s idea of the impli-
cate-explicate order may help explain certain anomalous phenomena in
chemistry. Science has long believed that one of the most absolute rules
in the universe is that things always tend toward a greater state of
disorder. If you drop a stereo off of the Empire State Building, when it
crashes into the sidewalk it doesn’t become more ordered and turn into a
VCR. It becomes more disordered and turns into a pile of splintered

Prigogine has discovered that this is not true for all things in the
universe. He points out that, when mixed together, some chemicals
develop into a more ordered arrangement, not a more disordered one. He
calls these spontaneously appearing ordered systems “dissipative
structures” and won a Nobel Prize for unraveling their mysteries. But
how can a new and more complex system just suddenly pop into exis-
tence? Put another way, where do dissipative structures come from?
Prigogine and others have suggested that, far from materializing out of
nowhere, they are an indication of a deeper level of order in the universe,
evidence of the implicate aspects of reality becoming explicate. 28

If this is true, it could have profound implications and, among other
things, lead to a deeper understanding of how new levels of complex-
ity — such as attitudes and new patterns of behavior — pop into existence
in the human consciousness and even how that most intriguing
complexity of all, life itself, appeared on the earth several billion years

“A sample audio cassette of holophonically recorded sound can be obtained for fifteen dollars
from interface Press, Box 42211, Los Angeles, California 90042.




The holographic brain model has also recently been extended into the
world of computers. In the past, computer scientists thought that the best
way to build a better computer was simply to build a bigger computer.
But in the last half decade or so, researchers have developed a new
strategy, and instead of building single monolithic machines, some have
started connecting scores of little computers together in “neural
networks” that more closely resemble the biological structure of the
human brain. Recently, Marcus S. Cohen, a computer scientist at New
Mexico State University, pointed out that processors that rely on
interfering waves of light passing through “multiplexed holographic
gratings” might provide an even better analog of the brain’s neural
structure. 29 Similarly, physicist Dana Z. Anderson of the University of
Colorado has recently shown how holographic gratings could be used to
build an “optical memory” that exhibits associative recall. 30

As exciting as these developments are, they are still just further
refinements of the mechanistic approach to understanding the universe,
advances that take place only within the material framework of reality.
But as we have seen, the holographic idea’s most extraordinary assertion
is that the materiality of the universe may be an illusion, and physical
reality may be only a small part of a vast and sentient nonphysical
cosmos. If this is true, what implications does it have for the future? How
do we begin to go about truly penetrating the mysteries of these subtler

The Need for a Basic Restructuring of Science

Currently one of the best tools we have for exploring the unknown
aspects of reality is science. And yet when it comes to explaining the
psychic and spiritual dimensions of human existence, science in the
main has repeatedly fallen short of the mark. Clearly, if science is to
advance further in these areas, it needs to undergo a basic restructuring,
but what specifically might such a restructuring entail?

Obviously the first and most necessary step is to accept the existence
of psychic and spiritual phenomena. Willis Harman, the president of the
Institute of Noetic Sciences and a former senior social

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scientist at Stanford Research Institute International, feels this ac-
ceptance is crucial not only to science, but to the survival of human
civilization. Moreover, Harman, who has written extensively on the
need for a basic restructuring of science, is astonished that this accept-
ance has not yet taken place. “Why don’t we assume that any class of
experiences or phenomena that have been reported, through the ages and
across cultures, has a face validity that cannot be denied?” he asks. 31

As has been mentioned, at least part of the reason is the longstanding
bias Western science has against such phenomena, but the issue is not
quite so simple as this. Consider for example the past-life memories of
people under hypnosis. Whether these are actual memories of previous
lives or not has yet to be proved, but the fact remains, the human
unconscious has a natural propensity for generating at least apparent
memories of previous incarnations. In general, the orthodox psychiatric
community ignores this fact Why?

At first glance the answer would appear to be because most psychia-
trists just don’t believe in such things, but this is not necessarily the case.
Florida psychiatrist Brian L. Weiss, a graduate of the Yale School of
Medicine and currently chairman of psychiatry at Mount Sinai Medical
Center in Miami, says that since the publication of his best-selling book
Many Lives, Many Masters in 1988 — in which he discusses how he
turned from being a skeptic to a believer in reincarnation after one of his
patients started talking spontaneously about her past lives while under
hypnosis — he has been deluged with letters and telephone calls from
psychiatrists who say that they, too, are secret believers. “I think that is
just the tip of the iceberg,” says Weiss. “There are psychiatrists who
write me they’ve been doing regression therapy for ten to twenty years,
in the privacy of their office, and ‘please don’t tell anyone, but . ..’ Many
are receptive to it, but they won’t admit it” M

Similarly, in a recent conversation with Whitton when I asked him if
he felt reincarnation would ever become an accepted scientific fact, he
replied, “I think it already is. My experience with scientists is that if
they’ve read the literature, they believe in reincarnation. The evidence is
just so compelling that intellectual assent is virtually natural.” 33

Weiss’s and Whitton’s opinions seem borne out by a recent survey on
psychic phenomena. After being assured that their replies would remain
anonymous, 58 percent of the 228 psychiatrists who responded



(many of them the heads of departments and the deans of medical
schools) said that they believed “an understanding of psychic phenom-
ena” was important to future graduates of psychiatry ! Forty -four percent
admitted believing that psychic factors were important in the healing
process. 34

So it appears that fear of ridicule may be as much if not more of a
stumbling block as disbelief in getting the scientific establishment to
begin to treat psychic research with the seriousness it deserves. We need
more trailblazers like Weiss and Whitton (and the myriad other
courageous researchers whose work has been discussed in this book) to
go public with their private beliefs and discoveries. In brief, we need the
parapsycho logical equivalent of a Rosa Parks.

Another feature that must be a part of the restructuring of science is a
broadening of the definition of what constitutes scientific evidence.
Psychic and spiritual phenomena have played a significant roie in human
history and have helped shape some of the most fundamental aspects of
our culture. But because they are not easy to rope io and scrutinize in a
laboratory setting, science has tended to ignore them. Even worse, when
they are studied, it is often the least important aspects of the phenomena
that are isolated and catalogued. For instance, one of the few discoveries
regarding OBFJs that is considered valid in a scientific sense is that the
brain waves change when an OBEer exits the body. And yet, when one
reads accounts like Monroe’s, one realizes that if his experiences are real,
they involve discoveries that could arguably have as much impact on
human history as Columbus’s discovery of the New World or the
invention of the atomic bomb. Indeed, those who have watched a truly
talented clairvoyant at work know immediately that they have witnessed
something far more profound than is conveyed in the dry statistics of R. H.
and Louisa Rhine.

This is not to say that the Rhines’ work is not important. But when vast
numbers of people start reporting the same experiences, their anecdotal
accounts should also be viewed as important evidence. They should not
be dismissed merely because they cannot be documented as rigorously as
other and often less significant features of the same phenomenon can be
documented. As Stevenson states, “I believe it is better to learn what is
probable about important matters than to be certain about trivial ones.” 35
It is worth noting that this rule of thumb is already applied to other

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more accepted natural phenomena. The idea that the universe began in a
single, primordial explosion, or Big Bang, is accepted without question
by most scientists. And this is odd because, although there are
compelling reasons to believe that this is true, no one has ever proved
that it is true. On the other hand, if a near-death psychologist were to
state flatly that the realm of light NDEers travel to during their
experiences is an actual other level of reality, the psychologist would be
attacked for making a statement that cannot be proved. And this is odd,
for there are equally compelling reasons to believe this is true. In other
words, science already accepts what is probable about very important
matters (/those matters fall into the category of “fashionable things to
believe,” but not if they fall into the category of “unfashionable things to
believe.” This double standard must be eliminated before science can
begin to make significant inroads into the study of both psychic and
spiritual phenomena.

Most crucial of all, science must replace its enamorment with
objec-tivity — the idea that the best way to study nature is to be detached,
analytical, and dispassionately objective — with a more participatory
approach. The importance of this shift has been stressed by numerous
researchers, including Harman. We have also seen evidence of its
necessity repeatedly throughout this book. In a universe in which the
consciousness of a physicist affects the reality of a subatomic particle,
the attitude of a doctor affects whether or not a placebo works, the mind
of an experimenter affects the way a machine operates, and the imaginal
can spill over into physical reality, we can no longer pretend that we are
separate from that which we are studying. In a holographic and
omnijective universe, a universe in which all things are part of a
seamless continuum, strict objectivity ceases to be possible.

This is especially true when studying psychic and spiritual phenomena
and appears to be why some laboratories are able to achieve spectacular
results when performing remote -vie wing experiments, and some fail
miserably. Indeed, some researchers in the paranormal field have already
shifted from a strictly objective approach to a more participatory
approach. For example, Valerie Hunt discovered that her experimental
results were affected by the presence of individuals who had been
drinking alcohol and thus won’t allow any such individuals in her lab
while she is taking measurements. In this same vein, Russian
parapsychologists Dubrov and Pushkin have found that they have more
success duplicating the findings of other parapsychologists



if they hypnotize all of the test subjects present. It appears that hypnosis
eliminates the interference caused by the conscious thoughts and beliefs
of the test subjects, and helps produce “cleaner” results. 3 * Although such
practices may seem odd in the extreme to us today, they may become
standard operating procedures as science unravels further secrets of the
holographic universe.

A shift from objectivity to participation will also most assuredly affect
the role of the scientist As it becomes increasingly apparent that it is the
experience of observing that is important, and not just the act of
observation, it is logical to assume that scientists in turn will see
themselves less and less as observers and more and more as experiences.
As Harman states, “A willingness to be transformed is an essential
characteristic of the participatory scientist.” 37

Again, there is evidence that a few such transformations are already
taking place. For instance, instead of just observing what happened to
the Conibo after they consumed the soul-vine ayakuasca, Harner
imbibed the hallucinogen himself. It is obvious that not all
anthropologists would be willing to take such a risk, hut it is also clear
that by becoming a participant instead of just an observer, he was able to
learn much more than he ever could have by just sitting on the sidelines
and taking notes.

Harner’s success suggests that instead of just interviewing NDEers,
OBEers, and other journey ers into the subtler realms, participatory
scientists of the future may devise methods of traveling there themselves.
Already lucid-dream researchers are exploring and reporting back on
their own lucid-dream experiences. Others may develop different and
even more novel techniques for exploring the inner dimensions. For
instance, although not a scientist in the strictest definition of the term,
Monroe has developed recordings of special rhythmic sounds that he
feels facilitate out-of-body experiences. He has also founded a research
center called the Monroe Institute of Applied Sciences in the Blue Ridge
Mountains and claims to have trained hundreds of individuals to make
the same out-of-body journeys he has made. Are such developments
harbingers of the future, fore-shadowings of a time when not only
astronauts but “psychonauts” become the heroes we watch on the
evening news?

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An Evolutionary Thrust toward
Higher Consciousness

Science may not be the only force that offers us passage to the land of
nonwhere. In his book Heading toward Omega Ring points out that there
is compelling evidence that NDEs are on the increase. As we have seen,
in tribal cultures individuals who have NDEs are often so transformed
that they become shamans. Modern NDEers become spiritually
transformed as well, mutating from their pre-NDE personalities into
more loving, compassionate, and even more psychic individuals. From
this Ring concludes that perhaps what we are witnessing is “the
skamanizing of modern humanity. ‘ 13S But if this is so, why are NDEs
increasing? Ring believes that the answer is as simple as it is profound;
what we are witnessing is “an evolutionary thrust toward higher
consciousness for all humanity. ”

And NDEs may not be the only transformative phenomenon bubbling
up from the collective human psyche. Grosso believes that the increase
in Marian visions during the last century has evolutionary implications
as well. Similarly, numerous researchers, including Raschke and Vallee,
feel that the explosion of UFO sightings in the last several decades has
evolutionary significance. Several investigators, including Ring, have
pointed out that UFO encounters actually resemble shamanic initiations
and may be further evidence of the shamanizing of modern humanity,
Strieber agrees. “I think it’s rather obvious that, whether [the UFO
phenomenon is being] done by somebody or [is happening] naturally,
what we’re dealing with is an exponential leap from one species to
another. I would suspect that what we’re looking at is the process of
evolution in action.” 39

If such speculations are true, what is the purpose of this evolutionary
transformation? There appears to be two answers. Numerous ancient
traditions speak of a time when the hologram of physical reality was
much more plastic than it is now, much more like the amorphous and
fluid reality of the afterlife dimension. For example, the Australian
aborigines say that there was a time when the entire world was
dreamtime. Edgar Cayce echoed this sentiment and asserted that the
earth was “at first merely in the nature of thought-forms or visualization
made by pushing themselves out of themselves in whatever manner
desired. .. . Then came materiality as sueh into the earth, through Spirit
pushing itself into matter.” 40

The aborigines assert that the day will come when the earth returns



to the dreamttme. In the spirit of pure speculation, one might wonder if,
as we learn to manipulate the hologram of reality more and more, we will
see the fulfillment of this prophecy. As we become more adept at
tinkering with what Jahn and Dunne call the interface between
consciousness and its environment, is it possible for us to experience a
reality that is once again malleable? If this is true, we will need to learn
much more than we presently know to manipulate such a plastic
environment safely, and perhaps that is one purpose of the evolutionary
processes that seem to be unfolding in our midst

Many ancient traditions also assert that humanity did not originate on
the earth, and that our true home is with God, or at least in a nonphysical
and more paradisiacal realm of pure spirit. For instance, there is a Hindu
myth that human consciousness began as a ripple that decided to leave
the ocean of “consciousness as such, timeless, spaceless, infinite and
eternal.” 41 Awakening to itself, it forgot that it was a part of this infinite
ocean, and felt isolated and separated. Loye has argued that Adam and
Eve’s expulsion from the Garden of Eden may also be a version of this
myth, an ancient memory of how human consciousness, somewhere in
its unfathomable past, left its home in the implicate and forgot that it was
a part of the cosmic wholeness of all things. 42 In this view the earth is a
kind of playground “in which one is free to experience all the pleasures
of the flesh provided one realizes that one is a holographic projection of
a . . . higher-order spatial dimension.” 43

If this is true, the evolutionary fires that are beginning to flicker and
dance through our collective psyche may be our wake-up call, the
trumpet note informing us that our true home is elsewhere and we can
return there if we wish. Strieber, for one, believes this is precisely why
UFOs are here: “I think that they are probably midwifing our birth into
the nonphysical world — which is their origin. My impression is that the
physical world is only a small instant in a much larger context and that
reality is primarily unfolding in a non-physical way. I don’t think that
physical reality is the original source of being. I think that being, as
consciousness, probably predates the physical.” 44

Writer Terence McKenna, another longtime supporter of the holo-
graphic model, agrees:

What this seems to be about is that from the time of the awareness of
the existence of the soul until the resolution of the apocalyptic potential,
there are roughly fifty thousand years. We are now, there can be no

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doubt, in the final historical seconds of that crisis — a crisis which involves
the end of history, our departure from the planet, [and] the triumph over
death. We are, in fact, closing distance with the most profound event a
planetary ecology can encounter — the freeing of life from the dark
chrysalis of matter. 4 ”

Of course these are only speculations. But whether we are on the very
brink of a transition, as Strieber and McKenna suggest, or whether that
watershed is still some ways off in the future, it is apparent that we are
following some track of spiritual evolution. Given the holographic nature
of the universe, it is also apparent that at least something like the above
two possibilities awaits us somewhere and somewhen.

And lest we be tempted to assume that freedom from the physical is
the end of human evolution, there is evidence that the more plastic and
imaginal realm of the hereafter is also a mere stepping stone. For
example, Swedenborg said that beyond the heaven he visited was
another heaven, one so brilliant and formless to his perceptions that it
appeared only as “a streaming of light. ” 46 NDEers have also occasionally
described these even more unfathomably tenuous realms. “There are
many higher planes, and to get back to God, to reach the plane where His
spirit resides, you have to drop your garment each time until your spirit is
truly free,” states one of Whitton’s subjects. “The learning process never
stops. . . . Sometimes we are allowed glimpses of the higher
planes — each one is lighter and brighter than the one before.” 47

It may be frightening to some that reality seems to become increas-
ingly frequency -like as one penetrates deeper into the implicate. And this
is understandable. It is obvious that we are still like children who need
the security of a coloring book, not yet ready to draw free -form and
without lines to guide our clumsy hands. To be plunged into
Swedenborg’s realm of streaming light would be tantamount to plunging
us into a completely fluid LSD hallucination. And we are not yet mature
enough or in enough control of our emotions, attitudes, and beliefs to
deal with the monsters our psyches would create for ourselves there.

But perhaps that is why we are learning how to deal with small doses
of the omnijective here, in the form of the relatively limited
confrontations with the imaginal that UFOs and other similar experi-
ences provide.



And perhaps that is why the beings of light tell us again and again that
the purpose of life is to learn.

We are indeed on a shaman’s journey, mere children struggling to
become technicians of the sacred. We are learning how to deal with the
plasticity that is part and parcel of a universe in which mind and reality
are a continuum, and in this journey one lesson stands out above all
others. As long as the formlessness and breathtaking freedom of the
beyond remain frightening to us, we will continue to dream a hologram
for ourselves that is comfortably solid and well defined.

But we must always heed Bohm’s warning that the conceptual pi-
geonholes we use to parse out the universe are of our own making. They
do not exist “out there,” for “out there” is only the indivisible totality.
Brahman. And when we outgrow any given set of conceptual
pigeonholes we must always be prepared to move on, to advance from
soul-state to soul A tate, as Sri Aurobindo put it, and from illumination to
illumination. For our purpose appears to be as simple as it is endless.

We are, as the aborigines say, just learning how to survive in infinity.



1 . Irvin L. Child, “Psychology and Anomalous Observations,” American
Psychologist 40, no. 11 (November 1985), pp. 1219-30.


1. Wilder Penfield, The Mystery of the Mind: A Critical Study of Con-
sciousness and the Human Brain (Princeton, NX: Princeton Univer-
sity Press, 1975).

2 Karl Lashley, “In Search of the Engram,” in Physiological Mechanisms
in Animal Behavior (New York: Academic Press, 1950), pp. 454-82.

3. Karl Pribram, “The Neurophysiology of Remembering,” Scientific.
American 220 (January 1969), p. 75.

4 Karl Pribram, Languages of the Brain (Monterey, Calif.: Wadsworth
Publishing, 1977), p. 123.

5. Daniel Goleman, “Holographic Memory: Karl Pribram Interviewed
by Daniel Goleman,” Psychology Today 12, no. 9 (February 1979), p. 72.

6. J. Collier, C. B. Burckhardt, and L. H. Lin, Optical Holography {New
York: Academic Press, 1971).

7. Pieter van Heerden, “Models for the Brain,” Nature 227 (July 25,1970),
pp. 410-11.

8. Paul Pietsch, Shufflebrain: The Quest for the Hologramic Mind (Boston:
Houghton Mifflin, 1981), p. 78.

9 Daniel A. Pollen and Michael C. Tractenberg, “Alpha Rhythm and Eye

Movements in Eidetic Imagery,” Nature 237 (May 12, 1972), p. 109,
10. Pribram, Languages, p. 169.




11. Paul Pietsch, “Shuffle brain,” Harper’s Magazine 244 (May 1972), p. 66.

12. Kareo K. DeValois, Russell L. DeValois, and W. W. Yund, “Responses of
Striate Cortex Cells to Grating and Checkerboard Patterns,” Journal of
Physiology, vol. 291 (1979), pp. 483-505.

13. Goleman, Psychology Today, p. 71,

14. Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine (Boston: New Science Library,
1982), pp. 108-9.

15. Richard Restak, “Brain Power A New Theory,” Science Digest (March
1981), p. 19.

16. Richard Restak, The Brain (New York: Warner Books, 1979), p. 253.


1. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat, “The Development of David Bohm’s Ideas

from the Plasma to the Implicate Order,” in Quantum Implications, ed.

Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London; Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987),

p. 1.
2 Nick Herbert, “How Large is Starlight? A Brief Look at Quantum Reality,”

Revision 10, no. 1 (Summer 1987), pp. 31-35.

3. Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky, and Nathan Rosen, “Can
Quantum-Mechanical Description of Physical Reality Be Considered
Complete?” Physical Review 47 (1935), p. 777.

4. Hiley and Peat, Quantum, p. 3.

5. John P. Briggs and F. David Peat, Looking Glass Universe (New York:
Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 96.

6. David Bohm, “Hidden Variables and the Implicate Order,” in Quantum
Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge &
Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 38.

7. “Nonioeality in Physics and Psychology: An Interview with John Stewart
Bell,” Psychological Perspectives (Fall-Winter 1988), p. 306.

8. Robert Temple, “An Interview with David Bohm,” New Scientist (No-
vember II, 1982), p. 362.

9. Bohm, Quantum, p. 40.

10. David Bohm, Wholeness and the Implicate Order (London: Routledge &
Kegan Paul, 1980), p. 205.

11. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

12. Bohm, Wholeness, p. 192.

13. Paul Davies, Superforce (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 48.
14 Lee Smolin, “What is Quantum Mechanics Really About?” New Scien
tist (October 24, 1985), p. 43.

15. Private communication with author, October 14, 1988.


16. Saybrook Publishing Company, The Reach of the Mind: Nobel Prize
Conversations (Dallas, Texas: Saybrook Publishing Co., 1985), p. 91.

17. Judith Hooper, “An Interview with Karl Pribram,” Omni (October 1982), p.

18. Private communication with author, February 8, 1989.

19. Renee Weber, “The Enfolding-Unfolding Universe: A Conversation with
David Bohm,” in The Holographic Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder,
Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), pp. 83-84.

20. Ibid., p. 73.


1. Renee Weber, “The Enfolding-Unfolding Universe: A Conversation with
David Bohm,” in The Holographic Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder,
Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 72.

2. Robert M. Anderson, Jr., “A Holographic Model of Transpersonal Con-
sciousness,” Journal of Transpersonal Psychology 9, no. 2 (1977), p. 126.

3. Jon Tolaas and Montague Ullman, “Extrasensory Communication and
Dreams,” in Handbook of Dreams, ed. Benjamin B. Wolman (New York:
VanNostrand Reinhold, 1979), pp. 178-79.

4. Private communication with author, October 31, 1988.

5. Montague Ullman, “Wholeness and Dreaming,” in Quantum Implications,
ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (New York: Routledge & Kegan Paul,
1987), p. 393,

6. I. Matte-Bianco, “A Study of Schizophrenic Thinking: Its Expression in
Terms of Symbolic Logic and Its Representation in Terms of Multidimen-
sional Space,” International Journal of Psychiatry 1, no. 1 (January 1965),
p. 93.

7. Montague Ullman, “Psi and Psychopathology,” paper delivered at the
American Society for Psychical Research conference on Psychic Factors in
Psychotherapy, November 8, 1986.

8. See Stephen LaBerge, Lucid Dreaming (Los Angeles: Jeremy P-Tarcher,

9. Fred Alan Wolf, Star Wave (New York: Macmillan, 1984), p. 238.

10. Jayne Gackenbach, “Interview with Physicist Fred Alan Wolf on the
Physics of Lucid Dreaming,” Lucidity Letter 6, no. 1 (June 1987), p. 52.

11. Fred Alan Wolf, “The Physics of Dream Consciousness: Is the Lucid
Dream a Parallel Universe?” Second Lucid Dreaming Symposium
Proceedings/Lucidity Letter 6, no. 2 (December 1987), p. 133.

12. Stanislav Grof, Realms of the Human Unconscious (New York: E. P.
Dutton, 1976), p. 20.



13. Ibid., p. 236.

14. Ibid., pp. 159-60.

15. Stanislav Grof, The Adventure of Self-Discovery (Albany, N.Y.: State
University of New York Press, 1988), pp. 108-9.

16. Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, N.Y.: State University of New
York Press, 1985), p. 31,

17. rbid., p. 78.

18. Ibid., p. 89.

19. Edgar A. Levenson, “A Holographic Model of Psychoanalytic Change,”
Contemporary Psychoanalysis 12, no. 1 (1975), p. 13.

20. Ibid., p. 19.

21. David Shainberg, “Vortices of Thought in the Implicate Order,” in
Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (New York:
Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 402.

22. Ibid., p. 411.

23. Frank Putnam, Diagnosis and Treatment of Multiple Personality Disorder
(New York: Guilford, 1988), p. 68.

24. “Science and Synchronicity: A Conversation with C. A. Meier,” Psycho-
logical Perspectives 19, no. 2 (Fall-Winter 1988), p. 324.

25. Paul Da vies, The Cosmic Blueprint (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1988),
p. 162

26. F. David Peat, Synckronicity: The Bridge between Mind and Matter (New
York: Bantam Books, 1987), p. 235.

27. Ibid., p. 239.


1. Stephanie Matthews-Simon ton, 0. Carl Simonton, and James L. Creigh-ton,
Getting Well Again (New York: Bantam Books, 1980), pp. 6-12.

2. Jeanne Achterberg, “Mind and Medicine: The Role of Imagery in Healing,”
ASPR Newsletter 14, no. 3 (June 1988), p. 20.

3. Jeanne Achterberg, Imagery in Healing (Boston, Mass.: New Science
Library, 1985), p. 134.

4. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

5. Achterberg, ASPR Newsletter, p. 20.

6. Achterberg, Imagery, pp. 78-79.

7. Jeanne Achterberg, Ira Collerain, and Pat Craig, “A Possible Relationship
between Cancer, Mental Retardation, and Mental Disorders,” Journal of
Social Science and Medicine 12 {May 1978), pp. 135-39.

8. Bernie S. Siegel, Love, Medicine, and Miracles (New York: Harper & Row,
1986), p. 32.



9. Achterberg, Imagery, pp. 182-87.

10. Bernie S. Siegel, Love, p. 29.

11. Charles A. Garfield, Peak Performance: Mental Training Techniques of the
World’s Greatest Athletes (New York: Warner Books. 1984), p. 16.

12. Ibid., p. 62.

13. Mary Orser and Richard Zarro, Changing Your Destiny (New York: Harper
& Row, 1989), p. 60.

14. Barbara Brown, Supermind’ The Ultimate Energy (New York: Harper &
Row, 1980), p. 274: as quoted in Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine
(Boston, Mass.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 112.

15. Brown, Supermind, p. 275: as quoted in Dossey, Space, pp. 112-13.

16. Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine (Boston, Mass.: New Science
Library, 1982), p. 112.

17. Private communication with author, February 8, 1989.

18. Brendan ORegan, “Healing, Remission, and Miracle Cures,” Institute of
Noetic Sciences Special Report (May 1987), p. 3.

19. Lewis Thomas, The Medusa and the Snail (New York: Bantam Books,
1980), p. 63.

20. Thomas J. Hurley III, “Placebo Effects: Unmapped Territory of Mind/
Body Interactions,” Investigations 2, no. 1 (1985), p. 9.

21. Ibid.

22. Steven Locke and Douglas Colligan, The Healer Within (New York: New
American Library, 1986), p. 224.

23. Ibid., p. 227.

24. Bruno Klopfer, “Psychological Variables in Human Cancer,” Journal of
Prospective Techniques 31 (1957), pp. 331-40.

25. ORegan, Special Report, p. 4.

26. G Timothy Johnson and Stephen E. Goldfinger, The Harvard Medical
School Health Letter Book (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University
Press, 1981), p. 416.

27. Herbert Benson and David P. McCallie, Jr., “Angina Pectoris and the
Placebo Effect,” New England Journal of Medicine 300, no. 25 (1979), pp.

28. Johnson and Goldfinger, Health Letter Book, p. 418.

29. Hurley, Investigations, p. 10.

30. Richard Alpert, Be Here Now (San Cristobal, N.M.: Lama Foundation,

31. Lyall Watson, Beyond Supernature (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), p.

32. Ira L. Mintz, “A Note on the Addictive Personality,” American Journal of
Psychiatry 134, no. 3 (1977), p. 327.



33Alfred Stelter, Psi-Healing (New York: Bantam Books, 1976), p. 8.
34. Thomas J. Hurley HI, “Placebo Learning: The Placebo Effect as a Condi-
tioned Response,” Investigations 2, no. 1 (1985), p. 23.
35.0’Regan, Special Report, p. 3.

36. As quoted in Thomas J. Hurley III, “Varieties of Placebo Experience: Can
One Definition Encompass Them All?” Investigations 2 no 1 (1985), p. 13.

37. Daniel Seligman, “Great Moments in Medical Research,” Fortune 117
no. 5 (February 29, 1988), p. 25.

38. Daniel Goleman, “Probing the Enigma of Multiple Personality ” New York
Times (June 25, 1988), p. CI.

39.Private communication with author, January 11, 1990.

40. Richard Restak, “People with Multiple Minds,” Science Digest 92 no
6 (June 1984), p. 76.

41. Daniel Goleman, “New Focus on Multiple Personality ” New York
Times (May 2\,\9%5), p. CI.

42. Truddi Chase, When Rabbit Howls (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1987), p.

43. Thomas J. Hurley III, “Inner Faces of Multiplicity,” Investigations 1
no. 3/4 (1985), p. 4.

44. Thomas J, Hurley III, “Multiplicity & the Mind-Body Problem: New
Windows to Natural Plasticity,” Investigations 1, no. 3/4 (1985), p. 19.

45. Bronislaw Malinowsld, “Baloma: The Spirits of the Dead in the Tro-bnand
Islands,” Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britam and
Ireland 46 (1916), pp. 353-430.

46. Watson, Beyond Supernature, pp. 58-60.

47. Joseph Chilton Pearce, The Crack in the Cosmic Egg (New York- Pocket
Books, 1974), p. 86.

48. Pamela Weintraub, “Preschool?” Omni 11, no. 11 (August 1989), p. 38.

49. Kathy A. Fackelmann, “Hostility Boosts Risk of Heart Trouble” Science
News 135, no. 4 (January 28, 1989), p. 60.

50. Steven Locke, in Longevity (November 1988), as quoted in “Your Mind’s
Healing Powers,” Reader’s Digest (September 1989), p. 5.

51. Bruce Bower, “Emotion-Immunity Link in HIV Infection,” Science News
134, no. 8 (August 20, 1988), p. 116.

52. Donald Robinson, “Your Attitude Can Make You Well,” Reader’s Diaest
(April 1987), p. 75.

53. Daniel Goleman in the New York Times (April 20, 1989), as quoted in

Your Mind’s Healing Powers,” Reader’s Digest (September 1989), p. 6.

54. Robinson, Reader’s Digest, p. 75.

55. Signe Hammer, “The Mind as Healer,” Science Digest 92, no 4 (April 1984),
p. 100.


56. John Raymond, “Jack Schwarz: The Mind Over Body Man,” New Realities
11, no. 1 (April 1978), pp. 72-76; see also, “Jack Schwarz: Probing … but
No Needles Anymore,” Brain/Mind Bulletin 4, no. 2 (December 4, 1978), p.

57. Stelter, Psi-Healing, pp. 121-24.

58. Donna and Gilbert Grosvenor, “Ceylon,” National Geographic 129, no. 4
(April 1966).

59. D. D. Kosambi, “Living Prehistory in India,” Scientific American216, no. 2
(February 1967), p. 104.

60. A. A. Mason, “A Case of Congenital lehthyosiform,” British Medical
Journal 2 (1952), pp. 422-23.

61. ORegan, Special Report, p. 9.

62. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), p. 74.

63. Herbert Thurston, The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism (Chicago: Henry
Regnery Company, 1952), pp. 120-29.

64. Thomas of Celano, Vita Prima (1229), as quoted by Thurston, Physical
Phenomena, pp. 45-46.

65. Alexander P. Dubrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and
Contemporary Science, trans. Aleksandr Petrovieh (New York: Plenum,
1982), p. 50.

66. Thurston, Physical Phenomena, p. 68,

67. Ibid.

68. Charles Fort, The Complete Books of Charles Fort (New York: Dover,
1974), p. 1022.

69. Ibid., p. 964.

70. Private communication with author, November 3, 1988.

71. Candace Pert with Harris Dienstfrey, “The Neuropeptide Network,” in
Neuroimrnunomodulation: Interventions in Aging and Cancer, ed. Walter
Pierpaoli and Novera Herbert Spector (New York: New York Academy of
Sciences, 1988), pp. 189-94.

72. Terrence D. Oleson, Richard J, Kroening, and David E. Bresler, “An
Experimental Evaluation of Auricular Diagnosis: The Somatotopic Map-
ping of Musculoskeletal Pain at Ear Acupuncture Points,” Pain 8 (1980), pp.

73. Private communication with author, September 24, 1988.

74. Terrence D. Oleson and Richard J. Kroening t “Rapid Narcotic Detoxifi-
cation in Chronic Pain Patients Treated with Auricular Electroacupuncture
and Naloxone,” International Journal of the Addictions 20, no. 9 (1985), pp.

75. Richard Levitoc, “The Holographic Body,” East West 18, no. 8 (August
1988), p. 42.

76. Ibid., p. 45.

77. Ibid., pp. 36-47.



78. “Fingerprints, a Cine to Senility,” Science Digest 91, no. 1 1 (November
1983), p. 91,

79. Michael Meyer, “The Way the Whoris Turn,” Newsweek (February 13
1989), p. 73.


1. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), p. 79.

2. Ibid., p. 58; see also, Herbert Thurston, The Physical Phenomena of
Mysticism (London: Bums Oates, 1952); and A. P. Schimberg, The Story
ofTherese Neumann (Milwaukee, Wis.: Bruce Publishing Co., 1947).

3. David J. Bohm, “A New Theory of the Relationship of Mind and Matter,”
Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 80, no. 2 (April
1986), p. 128.

4. Ibid., p. 132.

5. Robert G. Jahn and Brenda J. Dunne, Margins of Reality: The Role of
Consciousness in the Physical World (New York; Harcourt Brace
Jovanovich, 1987), pp. 91-123.

6. Ibid., p. 144.

7. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988.

8. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, p. 142.

9. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988.

10. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988.

11. Steve Fishman, “Questions for the Cosmos,” New York Times Magazine
(November 26, 1989), p. 55.

12. Private communication with author, November 25, 1988.

13. Rex Gardner, “Miracles of Healing in Anglo-Celtic Northumbria as Re-
corded by the Venerable Bede and His Contemporaries: A Reappraisal in
the Light of Twentieth-Century Experience,” British Medical Journal 287
(December 1983), p. 1931.

14. Max Freedom Long, The Secret Science behind Miracles (New York:
Robert Collier Publications, 1948), pp. 191-92.

15. Louis-Basile Carre de Montgeron, La Verite des Miracles (Paris: 1737), vol.
i, p. 380, as quoted in H. P. Blavatsky, his Unveiled, vol. i (New York: J. W.
Bouton, 1877), p. 374.

16. Ibid., p. 374.

17. B. Robert Kreiser, Miracles, Convulsions, and Ecclesiastical Politics in
Early Eighteenth-Century Paris (Princeton, N. J.: Princeton University
Press, 1978), pp. 260-61.

18. Charles Mackey, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of
Crowds (London: 1841), p. 318.

19. Kreiser, Miracles, p. 174.



20. Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, N.Y.: State University of New
York Press, 1985), p. 91.

21. Long, Secret Science, pp. 31-39.

22. Frank Podmore, Mediums of the Nineteenth Century, vol. 2 (New Hyde
Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1963), p. 264.

23. VracentH. G A ddis, Mysterious Fires and Lights (New York; Dell, 1967),
pp. 114-15.

24. Blavatsky, Isis, p. 370.

25. Podmore, Mediums, p. 264.

26. Will and Ariel Durant, The Age of Louis XIV, vol. XIII (New York: Simon
& Schuster, 1963), p. 73.

27. Franz Werfel, The Song of Bernadette (Garden City, NY.: Sun Dial Press,
1944), pp. 326-27.

28. Gaddis, Mysterious Fires, pp. 106-7.

29. Ibid., p. 106.

30. Berthold Schwarz, “Ordeals by Serpents, Fire, and Strychnine,” Psychiatric
Quarterly 34 (1960), pp. 405-29.

31. Private communication with author, July 17, 1989.

32. Karl H. Pribram, “The Implicate Brain,” in Quantum Implications, ed. Basil
J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p.

33. Private communication with author, February 8,1989; see also, Karl H.
Pribram, “The Cognitive Revolution and Mind/Brain Issues,” American
Psychologist 41, no. 5 (May 1986), pp. 507-19.

34. Private communication with author, November 25, 1988.

35. Gordon G. Globus, “Three Holonomic Approaches to the Brain,” in
Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London:
Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), pp. 372-85; see also, Judith Hooper and
Dick Teresi, The Three-Pound Universe (New York Dell, 1986), pp.

36. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988.

37. Malcolm W. Browne, “Quantum Theory: Disturbing Questions Remain
Unresolved,” New York Times (February U, 1986), p. C3.

38. Ibid.

39. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, pp. 319-20; see also, Dietrick E. Thomson,
“Anomalons Get More and More Anomalous,” Science News 125 (Febru-
ary 25, 1984).

40. Christine Sutton, “The Secret Life of the Neutrino,” New Scientist 117, no.
1595 (January 14,1988), pp. 53-57; see also, “Soviet Neutrinos Have
Mass,” New Scientist 105, no. 1446 (March 7,1985), p. 23; and Dietrick E.
Thomsen, “Ups and Downs of Neutrino Oscillation,” Science News 117, no.
24 (June 14, 1980), pp. 377-83.



41. S. Edmunds, Hypnotism and the Supernormal (Londonr Aquarian Press,
1967), as quoted in Supernature, Lyall Watson (New York: Bantam Books,
1973), p. 236.

42. Leonid L Vasiliev, Experiments in Distant Influence (New York: E. P,
Button, 1976).

43. See Russell Targ and Harold Puthoff, Mind-Reach (New York: Dela-corte
Press, 1977).

44. Fishman, New York Times Magazine, p. 55; see also, Jahn and Dunne,
Margins, p. 187.

45. Charles Tart, “Physiological Correlates of Psi Cognition,” International
Journal of Neuropsychiatry 5, no. 4 (1962).

46. Targ and Puthoff, Mind-Reach, pp. 130-33.

47. E. Douglas Dean, “Plethysmograph Recordings of ESP Responses,”
International Journal of Neuropsychiatry 2 (September 1966).

48. Charles T. Tart, “Psychedelic Experiences Associated with a Novel Hyp-
notic Procedure, Mutual Hypnosis,” in Altered States of Consciousness,
Charles T. Tart (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1969), pp. 291-308.

49. Ibid.

50. John P, Brigga and F. David Peat, Looking Glass Universe (New York:
Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 87.

51. Targ and Puthoff, Mind-Reach, pp. 130-33.

52. Russell Targ, et al.. Research in Parapsychology (Metuchen, NT.:
Scarecrow, 1980).

53. Bohtn, Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, p. 132.

54. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, pp. 257-59.

55. Gardner, British Medical Journal, p. 1930.

56. Lyall Watson, Beyond Supernature (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), pp.

57. A, R. G. Owen, Can We Explain the Poltergeist (New York: Garrett
Publications, 1964).

58. Erlendur Haraldsson, Modern Miracles: An Investigative Report on
Psychic Phenomena Associated with Sathya Sai Baba (New York: Fawcett
Columbine Books, 1987), pp. 26-27.

59. Ibid., pp. 35-36.

60. Ibid., p. 290.

61. Paramahansa Yogananda, Autobiography of a Yogi (Los Angeles:
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1973), p. 134.

62. Rogo, Miracles, p. 173.

63. Lyall Watson, Gifts of Unknown Things (New York: Simon & Schuster,
1976), pp. 203-4.



64. Private communication with author, February 9, 1989.

65. Private communication with author, October 17, 1988.

66. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988.

67. Judith Hooper and Dick Teresi, The Three-Pound Universe (New York:
Dell, 1986), p. 300.

68. Carlos Castaneda, Tales of Power (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1974), p.

69. Marilyn Ferguson, “Karl Pribram’s Changing Reality,” in The Holographic
Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder, Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p.

70. Erlendur Haraldsson and Loftur R. Gissurarson, The Icelandic Physical
Medium: Indridi Indridason (London: Society for Psychical Research,


1. Karl Pribram, “The Neurophysiology of Remembering,” Scientific
American 220 (January 1969), pp. 76-78.

2. Judith Hooper, “Interview: Karl Pribram,” Omni 5, no. 1 (October 1982), p.

3. Wil van Beek, Hazrat Inayat Khan (New York: Vantage Press, 1983), p.

4. Barbara Ann Brennan, Hands of Light (New York: Bantam Books, 1987),
pp. 3-4.

5. Ibid., p. 4.

6. Ibid., cover quote.

7. Ibid., cover quote.

8. Ibid., p. 26.

9. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988.

10. Shall ca Karagulla, Breakthrough to Creativity (Marina Del Rey, Calif:
DeVorss, 1967), p. 61.

11. Ibid., pp. 78-79.

12. W. Brugh Joy, Joy s Way (Los Angeles: J. P. Tarcher, 1979), pp. 155-56.

13. Ibid., p. 48.

14. Michael Criehton, Travels (New York: Knopf, 1988), p. 262.

15. Ronald S. Miller, “Bridging the Gap: An Interview with Valerie Hunt,”
Science of Mind ‘(October 1983), p. 12.

16. Private communication with author, February 7, 1990.

17. Ibid.

18. Ibid.

19. Ibid.



20. Valerie V. Hunt, “Infinite Mind,” Magical Blend, no. 25 (January 1990), p.

21. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

22. Robert Temple, “David Bohm,” New Scientist (November 11, 1982), p.

23. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988.

24. Private communication with author, October 18, 1988.

25. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988.

26. Ibid.

27. Ibid.

28. George F. Dole, A View from Within (New York: Swedenborg Foundation,
1985), p. 26.

29. George F. Dole, “An Image of God in a Mirror,” in Emanuel Sweden-borg:
A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen (New York: Swedenborg
Foundation, 1988), p. 370.

30. Brennau, Hands, p. 20.

31. Private communication with author, September 13, 1988.

32. Karagulla, Breakthrough, p. 39.

33. Ibid., p. 132.

34. D. Scott Rogo, “Shamanism, ESP, and the Paranormal,” in Shamanism, ed.
Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987),
p. 135.

35. Michael Hamer and Gary Doore, “The Ancient Wisdom in Shamanic
Cultures,” in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton, III.: Theo-
sophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 10.

36. Michael Hamer, The Way of the Shaman (New York: Harper & Row, 1980),
p. 17.

37. Richard Gerber, Vibrational Medicine (Santa Fe, N.M.: Bear & Co., 1988),
p. 115.

38. Ibid., p. 154.

39. William A. Tiller, “Consciousness, Radiation, and the Developing Sensory
System,” as quoted in The Psychic Frontiers of Medicine, ed. Bill Schul
(New York: Ballantine Books, 1977), p. 95.

40. Ibid., p. 94.

41. Hiroshi Motoyama, Theories of the Ckakras (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical
Publishing House, 1981), p. 239.

42. Richard M. Restak, “Is Free Will a Fraud?” Science Digest (October 1983),
p. 52.

43. Ibid.

44. Private communication with author, February 7, 1990.

45. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988.



1. See Stephan A, Schwartz, The Secret Vaults of Time (New York: Gros-set
& Dunlap, 1978); Stanislaw Poniatowski, “Parapsychological Probing of
Prehistoric Cultures,” in Psychic Archaeology, ed. J. Goodman (New York:
G. P. Putnam & Sons, 1977); and Andrzey Borzmowski, “Experiments with
Ossowiecki,” International Journal of Parapsychology 7, no. 3 (1965), pp.

2. J. Norman Emerson, “Intuitive Archaeology,” Midden 5, no. 8 (1973).

3. J. Norman Emerson, “Intuitive Archaeology: A Psychic Approach,” New
Horizon 1, no. 3 (1974), p. 14.

4. Jack Harrison Pollack, Croiset the Clairvoyant (New York: Doubteday,

5. Lawrence LeShan, The Medium, the Mystic, and the Physicist (New York:
Ballantine Books, 1 974), pp. 30-3 1 .

6. Stephan A. Schwartz, The Secret Vaults of Time (New York: Grosset &
Dunlap, 1978), pp. 226-37; see also Clarence W. Weiant, “Parapsychology
and Anthropology,” Manas 13, no. 15 (1960).

7. Schwartz, op. cit, pp. x and 314.

8. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

9. Private communication with author, October 18, 1988.

10. See Glenn D. Ktttler, Edgar Cayce on the Dead Sea Scrolls (New York:
Warner Books, 1970).

11. Marilyn Ferguson, “Quantum Brain-Action Approach Complements
Holographic Model,” Brain-Mind Bulletin, updated special issue (1978), p.

12. Edmund Gurney, F. W. H. Myers, and Frank Podmore, Phantasms of the
Living (London: Trubner’s, 1886).

13. See J. Palmer, “A Community Mail Survey of Psychic Experiences,”
Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 73 (1979), pp.
221-51; H. Sidgwick and committee, “Report on the Census of Hallucina-
tions,” Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research 10 (1894), pp.
25-422; and D. J. West, “A Mass-Observation Questionnaire on Halluci-
nations,” Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 34(1948), pp.

14. W. Y. Evans- Wentz, The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1911), p. 485.

15. Ibid., p. 123.

16. Charles Fort, New Lands (New York: Boni & Liveright, 1923), p. 1 1 1 .

17. See Max Freedom Long, The Secret Science behind Miracles (Tarry-town,
NY.: Robert Collier Publications, 1948), pp. 206-8.

18. Editors of Time-Life Books, Ghosts (Alexandria, Va.: Time-Life Books,
1984), p. 75.



19. Editors of Reader’s Digest, Strange Stories, Amazing Facts (Pleasant-ville,
N.Y.: Reader’s Digest Association, 1976), pp. 384-85.

20. J. B, Rhine, “Experiments Bearing oil the Precognition Hypothesis: III.
Mechanically Selected Cards,” Journal of Parapsychology 5 (1941).

21. Helmut Schmidt, “Psychokinesis,” in Psychic Exploration: A Challenge to
Science, ed. Edgar Mitchell and John White (New York: G. P. Putnam’s
Sons, 1974), pp. 179-93.

22. Montague Ullman, Stanley Krippner, and Alan Vaughan, Dream Telepathy
(New York: Macmillan, 1973).

23. Russell Targ and Harold Puthoff, Mind-Reach (New York: Delacorte Press,
1977), p. 116.

24. Robert G. Jahn and Brenda J. Dunne, Margins of Reality (New York:
Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1987), pp. 160, 185.

25. Jule Eisenbud, “A Transatlantic Experiment in Precognition with Gerard
Croiset,” Journal of American Society of Psychological Research 67 (1973),
pp. 1-25; see also W. H. C. Tenhaeff, “Seat Experiments with Gerard
Croiset,” Proceedings Parapsychology 1 (1960), pp. 53-65; and U. Timm,
“Neue Experiments mit dem Sensitiven Gerard Croiset,” Z F.
Parapsychologia und Grezgeb. dem Psychologia 9 (1966), pp. 30-59,

26. Marilyn Ferguson, Bulletin, p. 4.

27. Persona] communication with author, September 26, 1989,

28. David Loye, The Sphinx and the Rainbow (Boulder, Col.: Shambhala,

29. Bernard Gittelson, Intangible Evidence (New York: Simon & Schuster,
1987), p. 174.

30. Eileen Garrett, My Life as a Search for the Meaning ofMediumship (London:
Ryder & Company, 1949), p. 179.

31. Edith Lyttelton, Some Cases of Prediction (London: Bell, 1937).

32. Louisa E. Rhine, “Frequency of Types of Experience in Spontaneous
Precognition,” Journal of Parapsychology 18, no. 2 (1954); see also
“Precognition and Intervention,” Journal of Parapsychology 19 (1955); and
Hidden Channels of the Mind (New Yo >rk: Sloane Associates, 1961).

33. E. Douglas Dean, “Precognition and Retrocognition,” in Psychic Explo-
ration, ed. Edgar D. Mitchell and John White (New York: G. P. Putnam’s
Sons, 1974), p. 163.

34. See A. Foster, “ESP Tests with American Indian Children,” Journal of
Parapsychology 7, no. 94 (1943); Dorothy H. Pope, “ESP Testa with
Primitive People,” Parapsychology Bulletin 30, no. 1 (1953); Ronald Rose
and Lyndon Rose, “Psi Experiments with Australian Aborigines,” Journal
of Parapsychology 15, no. 122 (1951); Robert L. Van de Castle,
“Anthropology and Psychic Research,” in Psychic Exploration, ed. Edgar D.
Mitchell and John White (New York: G P. Putnam’s Son3, 1974); and
Robert L. Van de Castle, “Psi Abilities in Primitive Groups,” Proceedings of
the Parapsychological Association 7, no. 97 (1970).



35. Ian Stevenson, “Precognition of Disasters,” Journal of the American
Society for Psychical Research 64, no. 2 (1970),

36. Karlis Osis and J. Fabler, “Space and Time Variables in ESP,” Journal of
the American Society for Psychical Research 58 (1964).

37. Alexander P. Dvtbrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and
Contemporary Science, trans. Aleksandr Petrovich (New York: Consultants
Bureau, 1982), pp. 93-104.

38. Arthur Osbom, The Future Is Now: The Significance of Precognition (New
York: University Books, 1961).

39. Ian Stevenson, “A Review and Analysis of Paranormal Experiences
Connected with the Sinking of the Titanic, ” Journal of the American
Society for Psychical Research 54 (1960), pp. 153-71; see also Ian Ste-
venson, “Seven More Paranormal Experiences Associated with the Sinking
of the Titanic, ” Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 59
(1965), pp. 211-25.

40. Loye, Sphinx, pp. 158-65.

41. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

42. Gittelson, Evidence, p. 175.

43. Ibid., p. 125.

44. Long, op. cit„ p. 165.

45. Shafica Karagulla, Breakthrough to Creativity (Marina Del Rey, Calif:
DeVorss, 1967), p. 206.

46. According to H. N. Banerjee, in Americans Who Have Been Reincarnated
(New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, 1980), p. 195, one study done
by James Parejko, a professor of philosophy at Chicago State University,
revealed that 93 out of 100 hypnotized volunteers produced knowledge of a
possible previous existence; Whitton himself has found that all of his
hypnotizable subjects were able to recall such memories.

47. M. Gerald Edetstein, Trauma, Trance and Transformation (New York:
Brunner/Mazel. 1981),

48. Michael Talbot, “Lives between Lives: An Interview with Dr. Joel Whitton”
Omni WholeMind Newsletter I, no. 6 (May 1988), p. 4.

49. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day,
1986), pp. 116-27.

50. Ibid., p. 154.

51. Ibid., p. 156.

52. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987.

53. Whitton and Fisher, Life, p. 43.

54. Ibid., p. 47.

55. Ibid., pp. 152-53.

56. Ibid,, p. 52.

57. William E. Cox, “Precognition: An Analysis I and II,” Journal ofv
American Society for Psychical Research 50 (1956)-



58. Whitton and Fisher, Life, p. 186.

59. See Ian Stevenson, Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation (Char-
lottesville, Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1974); Cases of the Rein-
carnation Type (Charlottesville, Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1974),
vols. 1-4; and Children Who Remember Their Past Lives (Charlottesville,
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987).

60. See references above.

61. Ian Stevenson, Children Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville,
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), pp. 240-43.

62. Ibid, pp. 259-60.

63. Stevenson, Twenty Cases, p. 180.

64. Ibid., pp. 1%,233.

65. Ibid, p. 92.

66. Sylvia Cranston and Carey Williams, Reincarnation: A New Horizon in
Science, Religion, and Society (New York: Julian Press, 1984), p. 67.

67. Ibid., p. 260.

68. Ian Stevenson, “Some Questions Related to Cases of the Reincarnation
Type,” Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (October
1974), p. 407.

69. Stevenson, Children, p. 255.

70. Journal of the American Medical Association (December 1,1975), as
quoted in Cranston and Williams, Reincarnation, p. x.

71. J. Warneck, Die Religion der Batak (Gottingen, 1909), as quoted in Hoiger
Kalweit, Dreamtime and Inner Space: The World of the Shaman (Boulder,
Colo.: Shambhala, 1984), p. 23.

72. Basil Johnston, Und Manitu erscnufdie Welt. Mythen and Visionen der
Ojibwa (Cologne: 1979), as quoted in Hoiger Kalweit, Dreamtime and
Inner Space: The World of the Shaman (Boulder, Colo.: Shambhala, 1984),
p. 25.

73. Long, op. cit, pp. 165-69.

74. Ibid., p. 193.

75. John Blofeld, The Tantric Mysticism, of Tibet (New York: E. P. Dutton,
1970), p. 84; see also Alexandra David-Neel, Magic and Mystery in Tibet
(Baltimore, Md: Penguin Books, 1971), p. 293.

76. Henry Corbin, Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn Arabi, trans.
Ralph Manheim (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1969), pp.

77. Hugh Lynn Cayce, The Edgar Cayce Reader. Vol. II (New York: Paper-
back Library, 1969), pp. 25-26; see also Noel Langley, Edgar Cayce on
Reincarnation (New York: Warner Books, 1967), p. 43.

78. Paramahansa Yogananda, Man’s Eternal Quest (Los Angeles:
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1982), p. 238.


79. Thomas Byron, The Dhammapada: The Sayings of Buddha (New York:
Vintage Books, 1976), p. 13.

80. Swami Prabhavananda and Frederick Manchester, trans., The Upani-ahads
(Hollywood, Calif: Vedanta Press, 1975), p. 177.

81. Iamblichus, The Egyptian Mysteries, trans. Alexander Wilder (New York:
Metaphysical Publications, 1911), pp. 122, 175,259-60.

82. Matthew 7: 7, 17,20.

83. Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, The Thirteen-Petaled Rose (New York: Basic Books,
1980). pp. 64-65.

84. Jean Houston, The Possible Human (Los Angeles: J. P. Tarcher, 1982), pp.

85. Mary Orser and Richard A. Zarro, Changing Your Destiny (San Francisco:
Harper & Row, 1989), p. 213.

86. Florence Graves, “The Ultimate Frontier: Edgar Mitchell, the Astro-
naut-Turned-Philosopher Explores Star Wars, Spirituality, and How We
Create Our Own Reality,” New Age (May/June 1988), p. 87.

87. Helen Wambach, Reliving Past Lives (New York: Harper & Row, 1978), p.

88. Ibid., pp. 128-34.

89. Chet B. Snow and Helen Wambach, Mass Dreams of the Future (New
York: McGraw-Hill, 1989), p. 218.

90. Henry Reed, “Reaching into the Past with Mind over Matter,” Venture
Inward 5, no. 3 (May /June 1989), p. 6.

91. Anne Moberly and Eleanor Jourdain, An Adventure (London: Faber, 1904).

92. Andrew Mackenzie, The Unexplained {London: Barker, 1966), as quoted
in Ted Holiday, The Goblin Universe (St. Paul, Minn.: Llewellyn Publica-
tions, 1986), p, 96.

93. Gardner Murphy and H. L Klemme, “Unfinished Business,” Journal of the
American Society for Psychical Research 60, no. 4 (1966), p. 5.


1. Dean Shields, “A Cross-Cultural Study of Beliefs in out-of-the-Body
Experiences,” Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 49 (1978), pp.

2. Erika Bourguignon, “Dreams and Altered States of Consciousness in
Anthropological Research,” in Psychological Anthropology, ed. F. L. K.
Hsu (Cambridge, Mass.: Schenkman, 1972), p. 418.

3. Celia Green, Out-of-the-Body Experiences (Oxford, England Institute of
Psychophysical Research, 1968).



4. D. Scott Rogo, Leaving the Body (New York: Prentice-Hall, 1983), p. 5.

5. Ibid.

6. Stuart W. Twemlow, Glen 0. Gabbard, and Fowler C. Jones, “The
Out-of-Body Experience-. 1, Phenomenology; II, Psychological Profile; III,
Differential Diagnosis” (Papers delivered at the 1980 Convention of the
American Psychiatric Association). See also Twemlow, Gabbard, and
Jones, “The Osit-of-Body Experience: A Phenomenologica! Typology
Based on Questionnaire Responses,” American Journal of Psychiatry 139
(1982), pp. 450-55.

7. Ibid.

8. Bruce Greyson and C. P. Flynn, The Near-Death Experience (Chicago:
Charles C. Thomas, 1984), as quoted in Stanislov Grof, The Adventure of
Self Discovery (Albany, N.Y.r SUNY Press, 1988), pp, 71-72.

9. Michael B. Sabom, Recollections of Death (New York: Harper &. Row,
1982), p. 184.

10. Jean-Noel Bassior, “Astral Travel,” New Age Journal (November/De-
cember 1988), p. 46.

11. Charles Tart, “A Psychophysiological Study of Out-of-the-Body Experi-
ences in a Selected Subject,” Journal of the American Society for Psychical
Research 62 (1968), pp. 3-27.

12. Karlis Osis, “New ASPR Research on Out-of-the-Body Experiences,”
Newsletter of the American Society for Psychical Research 14 (1972); see
also Karlis Osis, “Out-of-Body Research at the American Society for
Psychical Research,” in Mind beyond the Body, ed. D. Scott Rogo (New
York: Penguin, 1978), pp. 162-69.

13. D. Scott Rogo, Psychic Breakthroughs Today (Wellingborough, Great
Britain: Aquarian Press, 1987), pp. 163-64.

14. J. H. M. Whiteman, The Mystical Life (London: Faber & Faber, 1961).

15. Robert A. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body (New York: Anchor
Press/Doubleday, 1971), p. 183.

16. Robert A. Monroe, Far Journeys (New York: Doubleday, 1985), p. 64.

17. David Eisenberg, with Thomas Lee Wright, Encounters with Qi (New York:
Penguin, 1987), pp. 79-87.

18. Frank Edwards, “People Who Saw without Eyes,” Strange People (London:
Pan Books, 1970).

19. A. Ivanov, “Soviet Experiments in Eyeless Vision,” International Jour-nal
of Parapsychology 6 (1964); see also M. M. Bongard and M. S. Smirnov,
“About the ‘Dermal Vision’ ofR. Kuleshova,” Biophysics 1 (1965).

20. A. Rosenfeld, “Seeing Colors with the Fingers,” Life (June 12,1964); for a
more extensive report of Kuleshova and “eyeless sight” in general, see
Sheila Ostrander and Lynn Schroeder, Psychic Discoveries Behind the Iron
Curtain (New York: Bantam Books, 1970), pp. 170-85.

21. Rogo, Psychic Breakthroughs, p. 161.



22. Ibid.

23. Janet Lee Mitchell, Out-of-Body Experiences (New York: Ballantine Books,
1987), p. 81.

24. August Strindberg, Legends (1912 edition), as quoted in Colin Wilson, The
Occult (New York: Vintage Books, 1973), pp. 56-57.

25. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, p. 184.

26. Whiteman, Mystical Life, as quoted in Mitchell, Experiences, p. 44.

27. Karlis Osis and Erlendur Haraldsson, “Deathbed Observations by
Physicians and Nurses: A Cross-Cultural Survey,” The Journal of the
American Society for Psychical Research 71 (July 1977), pp. 237-59.

28. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., with Paul Perry, The Light Beyond (New York:
Bantam Books, 1988), pp. 14-15.

29. Ibid.

30. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, On Children and Death (New York: Macrnillan,
1983), p. 208.

31. Kenneth Ring, Life at Death (New York: Quill, 1980), pp. 238-39.

32. Kubler-Ross, Children, p. 210.

33. Moody and Perry, Light, pp. 103-7.

34. Ibid., p. 151.

35. George Gallup, Jr., with William Proctor, Adventures in Immortality (New
York: McGraw-Hill, 1982), p. 31.

36. Ring, Life at Death, p. 98.

37. Ibid., pp. 97-98.

38. Ibid., p. 247.

39. Private communication with author, May 24, 1990.

40. F. W. H. Myers, Human Personality and Its Survival of Bodily Death
(London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1904), pp. 315-21.

41. Ibid.

42. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 8.

43. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day,
1986), p. 32.

44. Michael Talbot, “Lives between Lives: An Interview with Joel Whitton,”
Omni WholeMind Newsletter 1, no. 6 (May 1988), p. 4.

45. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987.

46. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 35.

47. Myra Ka Lange, “To the Top of the Universe,” Venture Inward 4, no. 3
(May/June 1988), p. 42.

48. F. W, H. Myers, Human Personality.

49. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 129.

50. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., Reflections on Life after Life (New York: Bantam
Books, 1978), p. 38.



51. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 39,

52. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., Life after Life (New York: Bantam Books, 1976),
p. 68.

53. Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, p. 35.

54. The 1 821 NDEer was the mother of the English writer Thomas De Quincey
and the incident is described in his Confessions of an English Opium Eater
with Its Sequels Suspiria De Prafundis and The English Mail-Coach, ed.
Malcolm Elwin (London: Macdonald & Co., 1956), pp. 51 1-12.

55. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, pp. 42-48.

56. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 50.

57. Ibid., p. 35.

58. Kenneth Ring, Heading toward Omega (New York: William Morrow,
1985), pp. 58-59.

59. See Ring, Heading toward Omega, p. 199; Moody, Reflections on Life
after Life, pp. 9-14; and Moody and Perry, Light, p. 35.

60. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 35.
61- Monroe, For Journeys, p. 73.

62. Ring, Life at Death, p. 248.

63. Ibid., p. 242.

64. Moody, Life after Life, p. 75.

65. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 13.

66. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 186-87,

67. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 22.

68. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 217-18.

69. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 34.

70. Ian Stevenson, Children “Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville,
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), p. 110.

71. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 43.

72. Wil van Beek, Hazrat Inayat Khan (New York: Vantage Press, 1983), p.

73. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 101-15.

74. See Leon S. Rhodes, “Swedenborg and the Near-Death Experience,” in
Emanuel Swedenborg: A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen et si. (New
York: Swedenborg Foundation, 1988), pp. 237 A 40.

75. Wilson Van Dusen, The Presence of Other Worlds (New York: Sweden-
borg Foundation, 1974), p. 75.

76. Emanuel Swedenborg, The Universal Human and Soul-Body Interaction,
ed. and trans. George F. Dole (New York: Paulist Press, 1984), p. 43.

77. Ibid.

78. Ibid., p. 156.



79. Ibid., p. 45.

80. Ibid., p. 161.

81. George F. Dole, “An Image of God in a Mirror,” in Emanuel Swedenborg;
A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen etal. (New York: Swedenborg
Foundation, 1988), pp. 374-81.

82. Ibid.

83. Theophilus Parsons, Essays (Boston: Otis Clapp, 1845), p. 225.

84. Henry Corbin, Mundus Imaginaiis (Ipswich, England: Golgonooza Press,
1976), p. 4.

85. Ibid., p. 7.

86. Ibid., p. 5.

87. Kubler-Ross, Children, p. 222.

88. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988.

89. P&Tamaivm&3.Yoganan<i&, Autobiography of a Yogi (Los Angeles:
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1973), p. viii.

90. Ibid., pp- 475-97.

91. Satprem, Sri Aurobindo or the Adventure of Consciousness (New York:
Institute for Evolutionary Research, 1984), p. 195.

92. Ibid., p. 219.

93. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, “The Dreamtime, Mysticism, and Liberation:
Shamanism in Australia,” in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wbeaton,
III-: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), pp. 223-32.

94. Holger Kalweit, Dreamtime and Inner Space (Boston: Sharobhala Pub-
lications, 1984), pp. 12-13.

95. Michael Hamer, The Way of the Shaman (New York: Harper & Row, 1980),
pp. 1-8.

96. Kalweit, Dreamtime, pp. 13, 57.

97. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 143-64.

98. Ibid., pp. 114-20.

99. Bruce Greyson, “Increase in Psychic and Psi-Related Phenomena Fol-
lowing Near-Death Experiences,” Theta, as quoted in Ring, Heading
toward Omega, p. 180.

100. Jeff Zaleski, “Life after Death: Not Always Happily-Ever-After,” Omni
WkoleMind Newsletter 1, no. 10 (September 1988), p. 5.

101. Ring, Heading toward Omega, p. 50.

102. John Gliedman, “Interview with Brian Josephson,” Omni A, no. 10 (July
1982), pp. 114-16.

103. P. C. W. Davies, “The Mind-Body Problem and Quantum Theory,” in
Proceedings of the Symposium on Consciousness and Survival, ed. John S.
Spong (Sausalito, Calif: Institute of Noetic Sciences, 1987), pp. 113-14.



104. Candace Pert, Neuropeptides, the Emotions and Bodymind in Proceedings
of the Symposium on Consciousness and Survival, ed. John S. Spong
(Sausalito, Calif.: Institute of Noetic Sciences, 1987), pp. 113-14.

105. David Bohm and Renee Weber, “Nature as Creativity,” Revision 5, no. 2
(Fall 1982), p. 40.

106. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987.

107. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 51 and 70.

108. Dole, in Emanuel Swedenborg, p. 44.

109. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 45.

110. See, for example, Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, pp. 13-14; and
Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 71-72.

111. Edwin Bernbaum, The Way to Skambhala (New York: Anchor Books,
1980), pp. xiv, 3-5.

112. Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, p. 14; and Ring, Heading toward
Omega, p. 71.

113. W. Y. Evans-Wentz, The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1911), p. 61.

114. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 50-51.

115. Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia (Chicago: Henry Regnery Co., 1969),
p. 134.

116. Private communication with author, November 3, 1988.

117. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), pp. 256-57.

118. Michael Talbot, “UFOs: Beyond Real and Unreal,” in Gods of Aquarius, ed.
Brad Steiger (New York; Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1976), pp. 28-33.

119. Jacques Vallee, Dimensions: A Casebook of Alien Contact (Chicago:
Contemporary Books, 1988), p. 259.

120. John G. Fuller, The Interrupted Journey (New York: Dial Press, 1966), p.

121. Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia, pp. 160-62.

122. Talbot, in Gods of Aquarius, pp. 28-33.

123. Kenneth Ring, “Toward an ImaginaJ Interpretation of ‘UFO Abductions,’ ”
Revision 11, no. 4 (Spring 1989), pp. 17-24.

124. Personal communication with author, September 19, 1988.

125. Peter M. Rojcewicz, “The Folklore of the ‘Men in Black’: A Challenge to
the Prevailing Paradigm,” Revision 11, no. 4 (Spring 1989), pp. 5-15.

126. Whitley Strieber, Communion (New York: Beech Tree Books, 1987), p.

127. Carl Raschke, “UFOs: Ultraterrestrial Agents of Cultural Deconstruc-tion,”
in Cyberbiological Studies of the Jmaginal Component in the UFO Contact
Experience, ed. Dennis Stilungs (St. Paul, Minn.: Archa-eus Project, 1989),
p. 24.



128. Michael Grosso, “UFOs and the Myth of the New Age.” in Cyberbiological
Studies of the Imaginal Component in the UFO Contact Experience, ed.
Dennis Stillings(St. Paul, Minn.: Archaeus Project, 1989), p. 81.

129. Raschke, in Cyberbiological Studies, p. 24.

130. Jacques Vallee, Dimensions: A Casebook of Alien Contact (Chicago:
Contemporary Books, 1988), pp. 284-S9.

131. John A. Wheeler, with Charles Misner and Kip S. Thome, Gravitation (San
Francisco: Freeman, 1973).

132. Strieber, Communion, p. 295.

133. Private communication with author, June 8, 1988.


1. John Blofeld, The Tantric Mysticism of Tibet (New York: E. P. Dutton,
1970), pp. 61-62.

2. Garma C. C. Chuang, Teachings of Tibetan Yoga (Secaucus, N J.: Citadel
Press, 1974), p. 26.

3. Blofeld, Tantric Mysticism, pp. 61-62.

4. Lobsang P. Lhalungpa, trans., The Life of Milarepa (Boulder, Colo.:
Shambhala Publications, 1977), pp. 181-62.

5. Reginald Horace Blyth, Games Zen Masters Play, ed. Robert Sohl and
Audrey Carr (New York: New American Library, 1976), p. 15.

6. Margaret Stutley, Hinduism (Wellingborough, England: Aquarian Press,
1985), pp. 9, 163.

7. Swami Prabhavananda and Frederick Manchester, trans., The Upani-shads
(Hollywood, Calif: Vedanta Press, 1975), p, 197.

8. Sir John WoodrorTe, The Serpent Power (New York: Dover, 1974), p. 33.

9. Stutley, Hinduism, p. 27.

10. Ibid., pp. 27-28.

11. WoodrorTe, Serpent Power, pp. 29, 33.

12. Leo Schaya, The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah (Baltimore, Md.:
Penguin, 1973), p, 67.

13. Ibid.

14. Serge King, “The Way of the Adventurer,” in Shamanism, ed. Shirley
Nicholson (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 193.

15. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, “The Dreamtime, Mysticism, and Liberation:
Shamanism in Australia,” in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton,
111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 226.

16. Marcel Griaule, Conversations with Ogotemmeli (London: Oxford Uni-
versity Press, 1965), p. 108.

17. Douglas Sharon, Wizard of the Four Winds: A Shaman’s Story (New York:
Free Press, 1978), p. 49.



18. Henry Corbin, Creative Imagination in the Sujism of Ibn ‘Arabi, trans.
Ralph Manheim (Princeton, NX: Princeton University Press, 1969), p. 259.

19. Brian Brown, The Wisdom of the Egyptians (New York: Brentano’s, 1923),
p. 15G.

20. Woodroffe, Serpent Power, p. 22.

21. John G. Neihardt, Black Elk Speaks (New York: Pocket Books, 1972), p.

22. Tryon Edwards, A Dictionary of Thought (Detroit F. B. Dickerson Co.,
1901), p. 196.

23. Sir Charles Eliot, Japanese Buddhism {New York: Barnes & Noble, 1969),
pp. 109-10.

24. Alan Watts, Too: The Watercourse Way (New York: Pantheon Books,
1975), p. 35.

25. F. Franck, Book of Angelas Silesius (New York: Random House, 1976), as
quoted in Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, NY.: SUNY Press,
1985), p. 76.

26. ” ‘Holophonic’ Sound Broadcasts Directly to Brain,” Brain/Mind Bulletin 8,
no. 10 (May 30, 1983), p. 1.

27. “European Media See Holophony as Breakthrough,” Brain/Mind Bulletin 8,
no. 10 (May 30, 1983), p. 3.

28. Ilya Prigogine and Yves Elskens, “Irreversibility, Stochasticity and
Non-Locality in Classical Dynamics,” in Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J.
Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 214;
see also “A Holographie Fit?” Brain/Mind Bulletin 4, no. 13 (May 21,
1979), p. 3.

29. Marcus S. Cohen, “Design of a New Medium for Volume Holographic
Information Processing,” Applied Optics 25, no. 14 (July 15, 1986), pp.

30. Dana Z. Anderson, “Coherent Optical Eigenstate Memory,” Optics Letters
11, no. 1 (January 1986), pp. 56-58.

31. Willis W. Harman, “The Persistent Puzzle: The Need for a Basic Re-
structuring of Science,” Noetic Sciences Review, no. 8 (Autumn 1988), p.

32. “Interview: Brian L Weiss, M.D.,” Venture Inward 6, no. 4 (July/ August
1990), pp. 17-18.

33. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987.

34. Stanley R. Dean, C. 0. Plyier, Jr., and Michael L. Dean, “Should Psychic
Studies Be Included in Psychiatric Education? An Opinion Survey,”
American Journal of Psychiatry 137, no. 10 (October 1980), pp. 1247-49.

35. Ian Stevenson, Children Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville,
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), p. 9.



36. Alexander P. Dubrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and
Contemporary Science (New York: Consultants Bureau, 1982), p. 13.

37. Harman, Noetic Sciences Review, p. 25.

38. Kenneth Ring, “Near-Death and UFO Encounters as Shamanic Initiations;
Some Conceptual and Evolutionary Implications,” Revision 11, no. 3
(Winter 1989), p. 16.

39. Richard Daab and Michael Peter Langevin, “An Interview with Whitley
Strieber,” Magical Blend25 (January 1990), p. 41.

40. Lytle Robinson, Edgar Cayce’s Story of the Origin and Destiny of Man
(New York: Berkley Medallion, 1972), pp. 34, 42.

41. From the Lankavatara Sutra as quoted by Ken Wilbur, “Physics, Mysticism,
and the New Holographic Paradigm,” in Ken Wilbur, The Holographic
Paradigm (Boulder, Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 161.

42. David Loye, The Sphinx and the Rainbow (Boulder, Colo.: Shambhala
Publications, 1983), p. 156.

43. Terence McKenna, “New Maps of Hyperspace,” Magical Blend 22 (April
1989), pp. 58, 60.

44. Daab and Langevin, Magical Blend, p. 41.

45. McKenna, Magical Blend, p. 60.

46. Emanuel Swedenborg, The Universal Human and Soul-Body Interaction,
ed. and trans. George F. Dole (New York: Paulist Press, 1984), p. 54.

47. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day,
1986), pp. 45-46.


Achterberg, Jeanne, 83-87

Acupuncture, II3-1G

The Adventure of Self-Discovery, Grof,

72 Afterlife realm, 244-48, 257-74
Aggression, heart problems and, 102 Aging,
multiple personality and, 99 Aharonov.
Yakir, 43 Aharonov-Bohm effect, 44 AIDS,
attitude and, 102 Alpert, Richard, 95-96
Alzheimer’s disease, 116-17
Amphetamines, 96 Anaximenes of Miletus,
290 Anderson, Dana Z., 294 Anderson,
Robert M., Jr., 61 Angels of Mens, 283
Angina pectoris, 90-91, 94 Animate matter,
Bohm’a ideas, 50 Anomalons, 140, 159
Antibiotics, placebo effect, 96 Apparitions,
202-5 Araucanian Indian shamans, 187
Archaeology, clairvoyants and, 198-200
Archetypal images, 60, 71 Armies, spectral,
204-5 Aspect, Alain, 3, 52-53 Aspirin, 91;
and heart attacks, 97 Associative memory,
21-22 Athletic performance, imagery and,

87-S8 Attitudes, 102; and
health, 118 Atwater, Phyllis, 270
Augustine, St., 119 Auras,
165-84, 202

Auriculotherapy, 113-15 Aurobindo Ghose,
Sri, 263-65 Australian shamans, aboriginal,

285, 289, 299-300; afterlife idea. 266
Autobiography of a Yogi, Yogananda,

152-53 Autosuggestion, stigmata
as. 109 Avatamsaka Sutra, 290-91
Awareness, energy field and, 192
Ayahuasca, 187, 266

Barrett, William, 142

Basketball players, 88

Batak people, Indonesia, 220

Bede, Venerable, 127, 240

Beings of light, 250, 256, 271-74, 302;

Sri Aurobindo and, 264; UFOs, 282-84
Bekesy, Georg von, 25, 54 Beliefs:
addiction to, 6-7; health and,

85, 101-10; and psychic abilities,

204-5; and reality, 137 Bell, John
Stewart, 43, 52 Benevolence of universe,
250 Benson, Herbert, 94-95 Bentov, Itzhak,
162 Bernadette of Lourdes, 135-36
Berabaum, Edwin, 272 Bernstein, Nikolai,
28-29 Between-life realm, 215-17, 247.

also Afterlife realm Beyond the Brain,
Grof, 59 Beyond the Quantum, Talbot, 149,
-Mi Bible, 222
Big Bang theory, 397
Bilocstion, 160-61




Birth control, unconscious, 101

Black Elk (Oglala Sioux shaman), 290

Blake, William, 50

Blind spot, 163

Blofeld, John, 287

Blood miracles, 113-20, 146-47, 153-54,

Body: afterlife state, 246-48; energy field

and, 219; holographic, 161
Body functions, mental control Qf,

Body reading, 184
Body responses, 121
Bohm, David, 1-2, 4-5, 31-33, 37-55, 138,

193, 200, 287, 290, 302; afterlife, 261;

consciousness, 61, 289; human energy

field, 178-79; implicate order, 84, 288;

near-death realm, 271; precognition, 212;

psychokinesis, 121-22; quantum reality,

Bohr, Niels, 35-37; Bohm and, 38-39
Bonaventura, St., 109
Bones, healing of, 106, 107-8, 127-28
Bourguignon, Erika, 230
Brain, 2, 11-<31, 54, 84; and

consciousness, 160; energy field and,

192; image projected outside of, 109-10;

and physical condition, 117-18; and

vision, 163
Brain-wave patterns of multiple

personality, 76, 77
Braun, Bennett, 98, 99
Breakthrough to Creativity,

Karagulla, 172
Brennan, Barbara, 167-69, 184-86, 190
Breznitz, Shlomo, 87-88
Briggs, John P., 32
Brigham, William Tufts, 128
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, 222
British Medical Journal, 127
Brocq’s disease, 105, 108
Brody, Jane, 97
Brunner, Werner, 103
Buddha, 222
Buddhism: Tibetan, 221, 287; Zen,

Buffalo Bill, 76-78

Caffeine, 96

Camisards, 135

Can We Explain the Poltergeist,

Owen, 149 Cancer, 102; mental imagery
and, 83-86 Cardiac arrest, and out-of-body

experience, 231-33 Carr, Audrey,
287-88 Cassandra (multiple personality),
99-100 Castaneda, Carlos, 138, 145,

Causality and Chance in Modern Physics,
Bohm, 40

Cause-and-effect relationships, 40

Cavalier, Jean, 135

Cayce, Edgar, 202, 221-22, 299

Ceylonese fire-walking ritual, 136

Chair tests, 207

Chakras, 166, 172, 174, 175, 190, 221

Changing Your Destiny, Orser and Zarro,

Chaotic phenomena, 176-78

Chayla, Abbe du, 135

Chemical phenomena, anomalous, 293

Chemotherapy, side effects, 97

Child, Irving L., 6

Children: near-death experiences, 250-51,
253-54; past-life recall, 217, 218;
Shainberg’s view, 74

Christian miracles, 108-11

Cis-platinum, 94

Cities, in afterlife realm, 272-73

Clairvoyance, Garrett’s description, 208

Clairvoyants, and archaeology, 198-200

Claris (Camisard leader), 135

Clark, Kimberly, 231-32

Coggtn, Ruth, 146-47

Cohen, Marcus S., 294

Coker, Nathan, 136

Cold medications, placebo effects, 96

Collective memory, LSD and, 68-69

Collective unconscious, 60-61, 276, 285,
299; and UFOs, 278-79, 281, 284

Combs, J. A. K., 128

Communication: in afterlife, 258;
faster-than-light, 36-37

Composite images, holographic, 71

Computer chips, 121

Computers, holographic, 294

Combo Indians, 266

Connectedness, extrasensory, 143-45. See
also Interconnectedness

Consciousness, 59, 81; altered states, 2-3;
Bohm’s ideas, 49-50; collective, 285;
holographic, 235; nonordinary states,
67-72; and out-of-body experience, 234;
and psychokinesis, 125-26, 133, 136-38;
and reality, 158-61; Sri Aurobindo and,
264, 265; and subatomic particles,
139-46; universal, 284-85; views of, 74,
146, 288, 289. See also Collective

Constantine’s army, 283

Corbin, Henry, 260

Cordero, Tony, 208, 212

Cosmos, as hologram, 32-55

Cox, William, 216

Creation, 189; of future, 212-13; myths


of, 300; participation in, 191; of
subatomic particles, 140, 146, 284

Creative Visualization, Gawain, 222

Crichton, Michael, 174

Croiset, Gerard, 199-200, 207

Crookall, Robert, 230

Crown chakra, 166

Cultural beliefs, 101-2

Cultural differences in near-death
experiences, 256

Dajo, Mirin, 103-4 Dale, Ralph Alan.
115-16 DaSibard, Jean, 52-53 Davies. John,
204 Davies, Paul, 53, 79, 270 Death, views
of, 2, 26 1 Descartes, Rene, 247 d’Espagnat,
Bernard, 54 DeValois, Karen and Russell,
27-28 Disease, energy fields and, 188-89
Disembodied states, 246-48. See also

Out-of-body experiences Disorder,
44-46 Dissipatrve structures, 293
Distribution: of information, 48; of

memory, 13-14, 30; of vision, 20 Divine
intelligence, 285 Doctors: and auras,
171-74; and drug

effectiveness, 92 Dogon people, Sudan,
289 Dole, George F.. 259 Don Juan (Yaqui
shaman), 138, 155-56,

160 Dorsett, Sybil, 99 Dosage, and
placebo effects, 91-92 Dossey, Larry, 30,
89-90, 197 Dreams, 60-65, 182;
information in, 252;

location in, 234; lucid, 3, 65-66; and

objective reality, SO; out-of-body

experiences and, 272-73n;

precogTutive, 205, 209-10; reality as,

285 Dreams of a Spirit-Seer, Kant, 257
Dreamtime and Inner Space, Kalweit,

195 Drugs, effectiveness of, 94-97, 99
Dryer, Carol, 169, 180-83, 186, 192, 284
Dubrov, Alexander P., 110, 297-98 Dunne,
BrendaJ., 5, 123-26, 139-40,

Dychtwald, Ken, 57

Ear acupuncture, 113-15 Egyptian Book of
the Dead, 240, 241 Eidetic memory, 23-24
Einstein, Albert, 35-39, 48 Eisenberg,
David, 236

Eisenbud, Juie, 207 Electromyograms
(EMGs), 174-76 Electrons, 33-34,
140, 159; Bohm’s

ideas, 47, 48, 50, 122; in plasma, 38
Emerson, Norman, 199 Emotions,
holographic record, 203 Empedoeles, 290
Energy, in space, Bohm’s ideas, 51-52
Energy fields, human, 165-93 Enfolded
order. See Implicate order Engrams, 11-13
Epileptics, brain studies, 12 EPR
(Einstein-Podolsky- Rosen) paradox,

37 ESP. See Extrasensory
perception Estebany, Oscar, 172
Ethericbody, 166. 170, 188-89
Evans-Wentz, W. Y., 203-4, 262
Evolution, psychic, 299-302
Experience, holographic idea, 84
Experiments in Distant Influence,

Vasiliev, 142 Explicate order, 46-48
External realities, 24-25 Extrasensory
perception (ESP), 141-44,

210; dream experiments, 6, 61- A 2
Eye, blind spot, 163 Eyeless sight,

Fahler, J„ 210 Fairies, 203-4 The
Eatry-Faith in Celtic Countries,

Evans-Wentz, 204 Faith, beliefs and,
107-10 Familiar things, recognition of,
22-23 Far Journeys, Monroe, 233
Faster-than-light communication, 36-37,

53 Fasting state, 153-54, 256 Fa-Tsang,
291 Feinberg, Leonard, 136 Feinstein,
Bertram, 191-92 Fenske, Elizabeth W.,
245-46 The Final Choice, Grosso, 276
Fingerprint patterns, 117 Fire,
invulnerability to, 133-36 Floyd, Keith,
160 Flying dreams, 272-73n Food, life
without, 153-54 Forgetting, 21 Forhan,
Marcel Louis, 239 Form, disembodied,
235, 247-48, 274 Fourier, Jean B. J„ 26
Fourier transforms, 27-29 Fragmentation,
75-76; Bohm’s views,

49. dreams and, 63; Sri Aurobindo

and, 264-65; synehronicitiea and, 80
France, mass psychokinesis, 128-32



Francis of Assisi, St., 108, 109-10
Francis of Paula, St, 133
Freeman, Walter, 4
Freewill, 192,211-13,217-18
Frequency analysis, senses as, 28
Frequency domain, reality as, 164-65
Fromm, Erich, 182
Future: control of, 220-28; holographic,

205-13; outrof-body visits to, 237-38
The Future Is Now: The Significance

of Precognition, Osborti, 210 Future
Science, White and Krippner,


Gabbard, Glen, 230-31

Gabor, Dennis, 27, 291

Galgani, Gemma, 109

Gallup, George, Jr., 244

Gomes Zen Masters Play, Sohl and
Carr, 287-88 Gardner, Rex,

127-28, 146-17 Garfield,

Charles A., 88 Garrett, Eileen,

200, 208 Gawain, Shakti, 222

Gerber, Richard, 188-89

Globus, Gordon, 138. 160

Gnostics, 290

God, 285; creation of universe, 189

Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von, 230

Gordon, Jim, 273n Greek philosophers,

290 Green, Celia, 230 Gremlin effect, 124

Greyson, Bruce, 270 Grof Christina, 72

Grof Stanislav, 2, 59. 66-72, 133, 158,
248 Grosso, Michael, 111, 275-76, 281,
299 Grosvenor, Donna and Gilbert, 104

Habits, universe as, 137

Halifax, Joan, 248

Hallucinogenic experiences, 60, 266-68

Halos, 165. See also Auras

Hammid, Hella, 206-7

Hands of Light, Erennan, 169

Haraldsson, Erlendur, 150-52, 160-61,

230, 241 Harary, Keith, 234, 238
Harman, Willis, 294-95, 298 Hamer,
Michael, 187, 266-68, 284, 298 Hauntings,
202-5 Hay, Louise L., 222 Heading
toward Omega, Ring, 299 Healers, and
auras, 167-68, 172-73 Healing: by
kahunas, 221; miraculous,

107-8, 146-47; multiple personality

and, 99-100; by psychokinesis,
127-28; by visualization, 83, 188-89
Health, multiple personality and,

97-100. See also Illness Hearing, sense
of, 28 Heaven, 244-48; Swedenborg’s idea,
259 Heimholtz, Hermann von, 28
Henderson, David K., 171 Heraciitus, 290
Herbert, Nick, 34 Hermes Trisroegistus,
290 Hidden order, 45 Hierarchies of order,
Bohm’s idea,

44-46 Higher consciousness, 299 Higher
sense perception (HSP). 171-72 Hill,
Barney and Betty, 278 Hilton, James, 272
Hinduism, 288, 290-91; creation myth,
300; and human energy fields, 178,
190 A History of the English Church and
People, Bede, 240 Holodeck,
reality as, 158-59 Holograms, 1,
Bohm and, 46-48; future as, 212; past
as, 200-205 Holographic Body
Assessment, 184 Holographic idea, 1-3,
7,126, 138, 139;
of brain, 11-31, 54; future of,
292-302; and near-death experiences,
244-46; paranormal events and, 5-6;
psychology and, 59-81; of reality, 144,
211-12; of universe, 32-55, 234, 285,
286-89 Hololeaps, 212 Holomovement,
Bohm’s idea, 47-49, 50;

habits of, 137; universe as, 121
Holophonic sound, 292-93 Holotropic
therapy, 72 Honorton, Charles, 206
Houston, Jean, 222 Howtand, Francine, 98
Huguenot miracles, 135 The Human
Encounter -with Death,

Grof and Halifax, 248 Human
energy fields, 165-93 Hume, David,
131 Hunt, Valerie, 174-78, 192, 297
Huxley, Aldous, 230 Huxley, T. H, 9
Hypnosis, 105, 108, 141-44, 297-98;
past life investigations, 224; and
precognition, 210; and reincarnation,

lamblichus, 222

Illness, 89-90, 188-89; diagnosis from



energy field, 167-68, 170-72, 185-86,

187; imagery and, 86-87 Imagery in
Healing, Achterberg, 35 Imagery
techniques, 83-85, 188 Images: from
afterlife realm, 274; in

human energy fields, 179-83;

projected outside of htain, 109-10
Imaginat realm, 260, 272-73, 280-81
Imagination, 84; Sufis and, 260 Immune
systems, 112; attitude and, 102 Implicate
order, 46-48, 51-52, 178-79,

271; brain function and, 84;

consciousness and, 50, 61, 74, 136-37;

dreams and, 63; human energy field

and, 188; human participation, 74;

interference patteruE, 164;

precognition and, 212; psychosis and,

63-05; synchronicities and, 79-80;

time and, 200-201; transpersonal

experiences and, 70 Inanimate matter,
Bohm’s ideas, 50 Indridason, Indridi, 161
media, 153-54, 256 Information, 21, 121;

141-44; from holographic reality. 146;

subatomic particles and, 122; from

transpersonal experiences, 71
Ink-in-giycerine device, 44-46
Intelligence: of body parts, 186-87;

nonhuman, 284-85
Intereonnectedneas, 35-38, 254-55;

Bohm and, 38, 41-44, 47-49;

extrasensory, 143-45; health and,

89-90; precognition and, 208; Sri

Aurobindo and, 264-65; universal,

60-61, 70, 81, 146, 289, 290-91
Interference holography, 23
Interference patterns, 14-16, 22; in

brain, 20 Internal vision, 185-87 The
Interpretation and Nature of the

Psyche. Jung and Pauli, 79
Intraholographic leaps, 212
Iridology, 116 Irwin, Harvey,

Jahenny, Marie-Julie, 111

Jahn, RobertG, 5, 122-26, 139-10, 146,

207; on reality, 160 Jansenist miracles,
128-32 Januarius, St, miracle of, 1 19-20
Jivaro Indian shamans, 187 Jones, Fowler,
231 Josephson, Brian D., 54, 145, 270
Jourdain, Eleanor, 226-27 Journey to Mian,
Castaneda, 155-56 Journeys Out of the
Body, Monroe,


Joy, W. Brugh, 173-74 Judaic views of
reality, 288-89, 290 Judgment, in afterlife,
250 Jue, Ronald Wong, 184 Jung, Carl, 60;
and synchronicity, 76 78-79; and UFOs,

Kabbalah, 165, 288-89

Kahunas (Hawaiian shamans), 128 133

212, 220-21, 289 Kalweit Holger, 195,
266-67, 268 Kant lmmanuel, 257 Karagulla,
Shafica, 171-72, 1 84 Kena Upanishad, 288
Khan, Hazrai Inayat, 165, 255 Kidney
transplants, 101-2 Klopfer, Bruno, 93-94
Knock, Ireland, miracles, 275 Knowledge,
in afterlife, 251-53, 258,

269, 272-73, 302 Koch, Robert, 101
Krebiozen, 93-94 Krieger, Dolores, 172-73
Krippner, Stanley, 165, 206, 208
Kubler-Ross, Elisabeth, 168, 239, 241-42
Kuleshova, Rosa, 237 Kunz, Dora, 172

Lame Deer (Lakota shaman), 286

Langs, Robert, 95

Language of psyche, 182

Laser light 14-15

Lashley, Karl, 12-13, 18

Lawlis, G. Frank, 87

Lawrence, D. H, 230

Layers of aura, 166, 188-90

Learned skill transference, 24

Learning, 13; physical, 29-30

Legends, Strindberg, 238

Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm, 291

LeShan, Lawrence, 200

Levenson, Edgar A., 72-73

Leviton, Richard, 116

Libet Benjamin, 191-92

Life: Bohm’s ideas, 50; purpose of, 302

Life after Life, Moody, 239, 254

Life at Death, Ring, 229, 244

Life plans, 253-55

life review, in near-death experiences,
241, 248-53; Swedenborg’s account,
258 Linton, Harriet 95 Little Man in the

Ear, 113-15 Location, 41-13; of hologram,

25 Lombroso, Cesare, 236-37 London, Jack,

230 Looking Glass Universe, Briggs and
Peat, 32



Lost Horizon, Hilton, 272

Louis XIV, King of France, 135

Louis XV, King of France, 129,131

Lourdes, miraculous cures, 106-8

Love, importance of, 250-51

Low, Medicine, and Miracles, Siege],

86-87 Loye, David, 208, 211-12, 254,
300 LSD, 67-70, 95-96 Lucid dreams, 3,
65-66, 298 Ludlow, Christy, 99 Lyttleton,
Edith, 209

McCallie, David P-, Jr., 95

McCarthy, Joseph, 4

McDonnell, James S , III, 126

McDougall, William, 132

McKenna, Terence, 300-301

McMullen, George, 199, 202

Maimonides, 290

Manic-depressive disorder, 64

Many Lives, Many Masters, Weiss, 295

Marriage, and immune systems, 102

Mary, Virgm, appearances, 275-76, 299

Maslow, Abraham, 70

Mason, A. A. p 105

Mass Dreams of the Future, Snow and

Wambach, 224 Mass psychokinesis,
128-32 Materializations, 147-54 Matter,
122, 136; Bohm’s ideas, 51;

consciousness and, 49-50, 264
Matthews-Simon ton, Stephanie, 37
Meaning, 121; Bohm’s views, 145-46
Meditation, and psychokinesis, 226 Meier,
Carl Alfred, 78-79 Memory. 3, 11-14, 17,
21, 30 Mental body, healing and, 188-89
Mental retardation, cancer and, 86
Mephenesm, 96 Mermin, N. David, 140
Metaconsciousness, 215-17, 250 Michelli,
Vittorio, 106-8 Microsystems,
acupuncture, 113-16 Milarepa (Tibetan
yogin), 287 Mind, 191-93; afterlife realm,
245-46 Miracles, 119-61, 139, 154-55,

healing, 106-8, 14647 Mitchell, Edgar,
223 Mitchell, Janet Lee, 233, 237 Moberly,
Anne, 226-27 Modern Miracles: An

Report on Psychic Phenomena

Associated with Sathya Sai Baba,

Haraldsson, 151-52
Mohotty, 104, 108, 136
Moler, Gabrielle, 134-35
Moniz, Egas, 4

Monroe, Robert, 233, 235, 239, 252, 272,

274, 298; out-of-body experiences, 257
Montgeron, Louis-Basile Carre de,

130-31 Moody, Raymond A., Jr., 239,
241, 254,

270 Morris, Robert, 233-34 Morse,
Melvin, 242-43 Motoyama, Hiroshi, 190
Movement, brain and, 28-29, 87-88
Multiple personality disorder (MPD),

74-76; health and, 97-100
Murphy, Gardner, 227 Muza,
Irene, 210

The Mystery of the Mind, Penfield, 12 The
Mystical Life, Whiteman, 235 Mysticism,
63, 165, 176; Tibetan, 221 Myths, 60, 182;
UFOs and, 278-81

Naegeli-Osjord, Hans, 103 — 4 Naples, San
Gennaro miracle, 119-20 National
Geographic, 104, 136 Near-death
experiences (NDEs), 2,

239-62, 265-66, 299, 301; effects of,
268-73; science and, 297 Neumann,
Therese, 110, 120-21, 153-54,

165,256 Neurons, 20; response of, 31
Neuropeptides, 1 12 Neurophysiology, 3
Neurosis of universe, matter as, 137
Neutrinos, 140 New York Herald, 136 New
York Times Magazine, 126 Nogier, Paul,

Nonhuman intelligences, LSD and, 69
Nonlocality, 41-44, 53, 79, 122; of
consciousness, 234; of human energy
field, 169, 179; of reality, 47-48, 261;
of retrucognition, 201-2; of universe,
290,291 Nonmanifest order, 45
Nonordinary consciousness states,

67-72 Nonphysical beings. See Beings of
light Nontraditional medical remedies, 90
Nuclear arms race, 74

OBEs. See Out-of-body experiences
Objective reality, 80-81,145 Objectivity,
scientific, 297-98 Objects, consciousness
of, 146 Observation, subatomic particles

35-36 Oglala Sioux medicine man,
290 Ojibway Indians, 220 Oleson,
Terry, 113-15 Omnijective universe,



On Yoga, Sri Aurobindo Ghose, 264

Oppenheimer, Robert, 4

Order, Bohm’s ideas, 44-46

Organ transplants, 101-2

Orser, Mary, 223

Osbom. Arthur, 210

Osis, Karlis, 152, 210, 233, 237-38, 241

Osmic frequencies, 28

Ossowiecki, Stefan, 198-99, 202

Other-world Journeys, Zaleski, 240

Out-of-body experiences (OBEs), 230-39,

257, 260, 272-73, 296, 298
Owen, A. R. G-, 149

Pain, sensation of, 25 Palmistry, 116-17
Parallel universes, 66, 211, 254
Parapsychology, science and, 5-6 Paris,
Francois de, 128-31 Participatory science,
297-98 Particles. See Subatomic particles
Passport to Magonia, Vallee, 278-80 Past
change of, 225-26; as hologram,

200-205; visits to, 226-28, 238 Past-life
investigations, 224-25 Patterns of
interference, 14-16, 22; in

brain, 20 Pauli, Wolfgang, 79, 124, 140
Peak Performance: Mental Training

Techniques of the World’s Greatest

Athletes, Garfield, 88 PEAR. See
Princeton Engineering

Anomalies Research laboratory Peat, F.
David, 3, 32, 79-81, 137 Pecci, Ernest, 184
Pell, Claiborne, 270 Penfield, Wilder, 12,
171 Penrose, Roger, 54 Pentecostals, fire
immunity, 136 Perception, 3, 141-44;

239 Personal flashforwards, 253-54
Personal resonance, 61 Pert, Candace, 112,
270-71, 273 Phantasms of the Living, 202
Phantom limb sensations, 25-26 Philippine
psychic healers, 126-27 Phillips, Robert A.,
Jr., 99 Philo Judaeus, 290 Philosophical
Essays, Hume, 131 Photographic memory,
23-24 Photons, polarization of, 36 The
Physical Phenomena of

Mysticism, Thurston, 109, 133, 154,

165 Physical responses to meaning, 121
Physicists, and quantum physics,


Physics laws, ashabits pf universe l A i
Physiological ettects ot mental lraaie
84-85 uuage,

Pietsch, Paul, 26

Pinball experiments, 123-24

Pio, Padre, 110, 111

PK. See Psychokinesis

Placebo effects, 90-97

Planes of being, Sufi idea, 221

Plasma, 38, 50, 122

Plasmons, 38

Plato, 240, 241, 290

Podolsky, Boris, 36

Polarization, 36

Pollen, Daniel, 23

Poltergeists, 148-50

Poniatowski, Stanislaw, 198-99

Positronium, 36, 42, 47

Positrons, 36

The Possible Human, Houston, 222

Potential futures, 225

Practical Astral Projection, Forhan,

239 Prebirth memories, LSD and, 67-68
Precognition, 69, 205-13, 238, 253-54
Predetermination, 211, 215-18, 253-55
Prefrontal lobotomy, 4 Pregnancy,
unconscious prevention, 101 Pribram, Karl,
1-2, 4-5, 54-55, 90, 287;

brain studies, 11-14, 18-20, 28-31,

163; and past time, 202; reality

viewed by, 31, 138, 164-65
Prigogine, Ilya, 293

Primitive cultures, precognition, 209-10
Princeton Engineering Anomalies

Research laboratory (PEAR), 5,

123-26, 142, 207 Proust, Marcel,
21-22 P si-Healing, Stetter, 104
Psyche, 100, 169-71; language of.

182-83. See also Unconscious
Psychic ability, 5-6; near-death

experience and, 270; of Talbot, 157
Psychic healers, Philippine, 126-27
Psychic information, 252-53 Psychic
phenomena, science and, 294-98 Psychics,
176, 185-87, 201-2, 208; and

auras, 179-83 Psychoanalysis,
Levenson’s view, 72-73 Psychokinesis
(PK), 120-32, 149; change

of past, 226; Sri Aurobindo and, 264
Psychology, holographic model, 59-81
Psychometry. 146. 198-200
Psychoneuroimmurtology, H 2 , 284
Psychosis, and implicate order, 63 — 65
Psychotherapy, LSD and, 67-70 Pushkin,
VeniammN,, 110, 297-98 Puthoff, Harold,
142, 206-7, 208

3 36


Putnam, Frank, 76
Pythagoras, 290

Quanta, 34, 47

Quantum physics, 7-8, 33-37, 53,

139-40 Quantum potential,
39-43 Quantum reality, 34-36
Quantum Theory, Bohm, 39
Quantum waves, 121-22 Quinn,
Janet, 173

Racial memories, LSD and, 68-69
Random event generator (REG), 123
Randomness, 44-46 Rasehke, Carl, 281-82,
299 Reality, 5, 31, 70, 121, 191, 237, 256;
afterlife realm, 262-63; consciousness and,
139-46; frequency aspects, 239, 244-45;
holographic, 11, 144-45, 211-12, 285;
implicate level, 271; miracles and, 154;
near-death experience and, 265-66;
participation in, 191; psychosis and, 63-64;
quantum, 34-35; subquantum, 47-48;
synchro nici ties and, 79-31; views of, 133,
138, 146, 157-61, 164-65, 270, 287-91,
300-301; Bohm’s views, 46-48, 84; Jahn’s
views, 125-26; Pribram’s views, 54-55; Sn
Aurobindo’s vie WE. 265; Sufi views, 221,
261; Swedenborg’s views, 259 Reality
fields, 159-60; hypnotic, 144-45
Recognition holography, 22-23
Recollection, 21
Recording, holographic, 292-93
Recovering the Soul, Dossey, 197
Reflexology, 116

Reincarnation, 213-23, 224-25, 295
Relatively independent subtotalities, 49
Relativity, Einstein’s theory, 48 Religion,
137, 269; health and, 107-10;
Sri Aurobindo and, 265 Religious visions,
60, 182 Remote viewing, 142, 145, 206-8
The Republic, Plato, 240, 241 Resonance:
between consciousness and reality, 125; of
meaning, 122, 145-46; therapeutic, 73
Restate, Richard, 30 Retrocognition,
199-202, 238 Rhine, Louisa, 205-6, 209,
296 Rich, Beatrice, 179-80, 181, 201
Richardson, Alan, 83 Ring, Kenneth, 2,
229, 244-46, 253,

269-70, 280, 299 Roger, Gerard,
52-53 Rogo, D. Scott, 10S, 120, 159,

Rohrlich, Fritz, 139

Rojcewicz, Peter M., 280
Rosen, Nathan, 36 Russell,
George, 273

Sabom, Michael B., 232-33

Sai Baba, Sathya, 150-52, 160-61, 165,

256 Salamanders, brain studies. 26
San Gennaro, miracle of, 1 19-20
Schaya, Leo, 288-B9 Schizophrenia,
64 Schlitz, Marilyn, 225-26 Schmidt,
Helmut, 206, 225-26 Schwartz,
Stephan A., 200 Schwarz, Berthold,
136 Schwarz, Jack, 102-3 Science,
5-6; basic restructuring,

294-98; and near-death experiences,

244 Scientific American, 104 The
Secret Vaults of Time, Schwartz,

200 Seidl (medical doctor), 153 Self:
as hologram, 76; reality of, 55
Self-reference cosmology, 284 Senses,
holographic function, 28 Shadrach,
Meshach, and Abednego,

133 Shainberg, David, 73-74 Shamans,
187, 266-67, 289; Hawaiian,

128, 133; Indonesian, 154-55; Yaqui

Indian, 138, 155-56 Shapeshifting, 47
Sharon, Douglas, 289 Shiels, Dean, 230
Shimony, Abner, 53-54 Shu/fiebrain,
Pietsch, 26 Side effects of placebos,
96-97 Siegel, Bernie S„ 6, 86-57, 168
Simonton, 0, Carl, 82-84, 87 Smell, sense
of, 28 Smolin, Lee, 53 Snow, Chet B.,
224 Sobel, David, 92 Sohl, Robert,
287-88 Sohrawardj, 261 Solimani,
Giovanna Maria, 110 Soma-significant
diseases, 87 Sonnet. Marie, 134-35 Soul,
questions of, 213-23 Sound, holographic,
292-93 Soviet Union; and holographic

110-11; imagery by athletes, 88 Space,
51-52, 229-30; and near-death

experiences, 245 Spacelessness,
229-30 Spirit journeys, shatnanic,



Spirit realm, 271. See also Afterlife

realm Spirituality, religion and, 269
Spontaneous past-life recall, 217 Stalking
the Wild Pendulum, Bentov,

162 Star Trek The Next Generation, 158
Steinsalte, Rabbi, 222 Stelter, Alfred, 104
Stevenson, Ian, 217-19, 296 Stigmata,
108-11, 120-21, 153-54, 188 Stress, health
and, 102 Strieber, Whitley, 280-81, 284,
299, 300 Strindberg, August, 230, 238
Subatomic events, interconnectedness

of, 35-38; Bohm and, 38, 41M4
Subatomic particles, 3, 33-37, 121-22,

139-46, 159, 284 Subquantum reality,
47-48 Subtle bodies, 166 Subtle energy
fields, universal, 190 Subtle matter, Persian
Sufis and, 260 Sufis, Persian, 221, 260-61,
290 Sullivan, Robert, 248 Surgery: on
brain, 12, 13-14, 18-19;

placebo effect, 90-9 1 Svetasvatara
Upanlshad, 288 Swann, Ingo, 212 Swann Is
Way, Proust, 21-22 Swedenborg, Emanuel,
183′, 257-59, 272,

301 Symbolism, psychic, 255
Synchronicities, 3, 76-80, 107n, 189
Synehronicity; The Bridge Between

Matter and Mind, Peat, 3

Talbot, Michael, 7, 76-78, 155-157, 160;

and auras, 165-67, 180-81; dreams of,

272-73n; outof-body experience of, 231;

and poltergeists, 149-50
Tanous, Alex, 237-38
Tantras, 190
Tantric mystics, 221
Targ, Russell, 142, 206-7, 208
Tart, Charles, 143-44, 233
Taste, sense of, 28
Telepathy, Bohm’s views, 145
Tenhaeff, W. H. C, 199
Teresa of Avila, St, 111
Theories, Bohm and, 53
Therapeutic touch, 173
Therapy, holotropic, 72
Thero, E. Nandisvara Nayake, 266
Tkirteen-F ‘etaled Rose, Steinsaltz, 222
Thomas, Lewis, 91
Thomas of Celano, 109-10
Thought, 220-22; and energy fields, 189;

holographic model, 72-74; meaning

and, 121; and neardeath experience,

245-46 Three-dimensionality of

15-17 Thurston, Herbert. 109, 120, 133,

165 Tia (Indonesian shaman), 154-55
Tibetan Book of the Dead, 240, 241, 285
Tibetan Buddhism, 221, 287 Tiller,
William, 158, 189 Time: holographic idea,
200-201; and

near-death experiences, 245; and

out-of-body experiences, 237-38;

travel in, 226-28 Titanic, sinking of, 21 1
Touch, sense of, 28 Tractenberg, Michael,
23 Transcendental experiences, 165
Transpersonal phenomena, 70-71 Trauma,
Trance and Transformation,

213-14 Treatise of Auriculotherapy,

112 Trobriand Islands, birth control, 101
Tuberculosis, 101 Twemlow, Stuart, 231
Two-particle experiment, 36-37, 52-53

UFOs, 276-84, 299 Uilman,
Montague, 61-65, 206 Ulnar loop
fingerprints, 116-17 Umbrella
incident, 155-57 Unconscious, 158,
182-83, 192;
collective, 60-61, 276; and destiny,
216-22; placebo effects, 91; and
UFOs, 278-79, 281, 284 Universe:
benevolence of, 250; as
energy field, 189; as holodeck, 159;
holographic, 1-3, 265; and out-of-body
experience, 234; parallel, 254;
predetermination of, 21 1-12

Valkhoff, Marius, 199

Vallee, Jacques, 277-80, 282, 299

van Heerden, Pieter, 22

Vasiliev, Leonid, 142

La Verite des Miracles, Montgeron,

130-31 Veronica Giuliana, St, 110-11
Virgin Mary, visitations by, 275-76, 299
Virtual images, dreams as, 65-66 Vision:
eyeless, 236-37; holographic,

18-20, 27, 163-93 Visual centers of brain,
18-20 Visualization: control of future,

healing, 83, 188-89; Sufis and, 260
Visvasara Tantra, 290 Voltaire, 131



von Neumann, John, 2 1
Vortices of thought, 73-74

Wambach, Helen, 224
Warts, placebos for, 91
Watson, Lyall, 126-27, 138, 147-18,

154-55 Wave patterns, interference,
14-16 Waves, subatomic particles as, 33-34
Weeping Madonnas, 154 Weiant, Clarence
W„ 200 Weinreb, Herman, 1 16-17 Weiss,
Brian L, 294 Wheeler, John, 284 White,
John, 165 Whiteman, J. H. M., 235 Whiting,
Christine, 238 Whitman, Walt, 82, 118
Whitton, Joel, 213-16, 247, 250, 255,

271,295 Wholeness, 41,48-49; Sri
Aurobindo and,

264-65. See also Interconnectedness
Wholeness and the implicate Order,

Bohra, 46 Wilbur,
Cornelia, 99

Wilfrid, St. 127-28

Will power, and body functions, 102-4

Wisdom, In dreams, 62-63

Wissen, K. R., 135

Wizard of the Four Winds: A

Shaman’s Story, Sharon, 289 Wolf,
Fred Alan, 3, 65-66 Wood, Frank, 30
Woodroffe, John, 288 “World-out-there”
constructions, 24-25

X-ray vision, 184-87

Yeats, William Butler, 203

Yoga, 262-65

Yogananda, Pararaahansa, 152-53,

You Can Heal Your Life, Hay, 222
Yukteswar Giri, Sri, 262

Zaleski, Carol, 240 Zarro, Richard
A., 223 Zeitoun, Egypt, miracles,
275-76 Zen Buddhism, 287-88
Zuecarelli, Hugo, 292-93



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