The following material is excerpted from chapter 11 in my third book: Integral Resolutions Vol II: The Evolution of the Human Soul.
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Death: The Dying Experience and Beyond
Let me start this chapter by saying that, in a manner of speaking, there is no particular point of death. It is not something you can put your finger on and say, “There it is!” I am well aware that on the physical plane, the doctors will pronounce the moment of death as when the heart stops beating, the lungs stop breathing, and then the brain dies of oxygen starvation [lack of any physical brain activity.]
However, for the individual soul of the person just pronounced dead, it does not happen in this way. You see, the energy of your being [the eternal you] does not cease to exist; even after the psychic separation from your body. In fact, in some cases, the individual may continue to exist as if nothing has happened, so to speak. For those unfortunate souls who do not realize that they are dead, they will try to reenter the body or move about physically as if still alive, and then the difference becomes very clear.
It becomes obvious what has happened, and this is very confusing to some souls. They simply do not understand they are dead, because they continue to exist very much “alive.” For those souls who have accomplished much or most of what they came to do, the feeling at the end of a long life is very rewarding. I can use the analogy of a farmer here very successfully to make my point.
For example, a farmer at the end of a very long and exhaustive day during the end of the harvesting season has a great sense of satisfaction and affection for the entire process of farming from before planting to after harvesting. Yes, even though there may be total mental, physical, and emotional exhaustion [due to the choices, stresses, and strains] when it is done well, then this feeling I am describing, comes over them.
In many ways, this feeling is similar to that experienced by some souls immediately after their deaths. [The “fortunate ones.”] However, there are indeed those many others for whom this does not apply, as their experience comes more from a space of fear, than that of love. This material is very difficult at best to try to explain to you. For some of these concepts, I am trying to convey to you, there are simply no verbal equivalents.
The actual experiences you will have at and beyond your death will depend greatly upon the age and level of your soul, as well as your particular belief system; in short, you will experience that which is true for you. For example, those souls who believe in a literal heaven and hell must experience this before they can experience anything else. What they will have to learn, is that the conditions of their afterlife are actually of their own creation. They create this [although there are other souls who will choose to participate] with the material of the astral plane at the time of the transition, and this is done with their own thoughts, feelings, and emotions.
For those souls who choose to suicide, the death experience is a ghastly one. However, this is not because of any outside force or agency judging or punishing them; it because of their own depression they take with them. On the astral plane, after death, the energy of your being is translated into actualization automatically and immediately; therefore, the depression will manifest many things horrific in nature.
On the physical plane, there exists a time lag before any materialization; this is no longer true on the astral plane. Realize that no matter what the conditions are that are being created by the newly departed soul [unknown to them usually] there are always teachers and/or guides ready nearby to help them learn to understand the true situation when they are ready.
Sometimes, the members of one’s own entity [again unknown to them at this point] come into play here to aid them. There could be as many variations on this as there are souls on the planet. For example, sometimes after death, the individual soul may find they are within many very different environments [all within the blink of an eye] before they are taught to realize they are the one who is bringing this about.
It is not so much that you will go to a different place when you die, as it does not have to do with moving from one space to another. It has more to do with a shifting of focus than anything else. Think here of turning the dial on a radio to tune into a particular station or frequency, and perhaps you may intuitively grasp my meaning. Some souls do not believe in anything after death, they think that when you die, you go into the ground and become worm food.
This is exactly what they will experience for themselves “nothingness or blackness” until they are ready to learn of the true situation,” with the help of those I spoke about earlier. [Initially, they will first have to become aware of themselves “experiencing the nothingness” in order for the “process of learning to begin.”] The form or appearance of what or who they perceive to teach them the true situation will be of course, highly personal and individually unique. Incidentally, these teachers and/or guides are masters at what they do. They know exactly how to present themselves, to reach the particular soul they are helping. A religious figure, a dead loved one, or what-have-you, anyone or anything that the recently deceased will not only accept, but also trust, is the method employed here.
These teachers know how to approach the recently dead, to communicate to them in such a way as they can psychologically and emotionally handle it or deal with it. Some individual souls who have built the last years of their physical life psychologically and emotionally focused upon ill health and the conditions of hospitals, assisted living facilities, and so forth, may very well not even realize that they are dead yet, for a while to come. The conditions they experience there can be so very similar that they do not notice the transition which took place for them. However, little by little, they start to “put things together.”
For instance, they may begin to notice that the environment is a little different than they remember [they wonder if they have moved and forgotten this.] They also begin to notice that some of their visitors are those that are slowly remembered as already being dead. At first, they think they are dreaming, but then they realize that they are not dreaming, and this confuses them; but this also starts the process of realization, but again, not until they are ready for this to occur.
Some unfortunate souls will remain in a sort of “limbo” for many of our earth’s years before they will allow themselves to learn of the true situation, however they will learn of it eventually. It is important to understand that none of this has anything at all to do with right or wrong, better or worse, or any value of one over another. There is no judgment at this level of existence. There is so much possibility and variation here, that it is not possible to cover it all. However, it is my hope that in some small way you are beginning to grasp intuitively, some of what I am trying to say to you.
Old souls normally have a very short transitional phase to the “other side” after their death. The old soul’s death transition is more direct than younger souls, who must first go through their “unconsciously created” versions of the afterlife, until they are ready to “move on,” after learning of the “true situation.” In all cases, no matter whether young or old, there is eventually a point where the individual soul will review the lifetime just ended, to learn where it succeeded and failed at translating its thoughts, feelings, and emotions into the created reality it experienced, and how this affected others.
After this lesson is assimilated, then the soul is ready to expand its identity to include the other physical selves it has been before. The lessons they learned from each one of them, then become known and understood. Following this level of learning, the soul now begins to decide upon its next incarnation. However, in some cases, the soul is at the point of choosing to leave the reincarnational framework entirely. This last option is only for those souls who are finished with the full cycle of their lives; and after they have fully “assimilated” all of their personalities. For you see, once the reincarnational cycle is begun, it must be completed before you can leave.
Often, the souls who are finished with their cycle of lives, will find ways to be of help to those in their entity still with work to do on completing their cycle of lives. Now, at the moment of death, being out of the body is terrifying for the baby soul, uncomfortable for the young soul, interesting to the mature soul, however it is welcomed by the old soul. Remember, with all of this, I am not speaking in chronological terms of the particular lifetime only. For instance, when I say baby soul, I do not literally mean a baby, but rather a grown adult whose soul age is that of a baby soul, in terms of time here on the physical plane through different lives.
For the souls who need the death experience involving devils and demons; they will have it. Eventually, they will learn that the devils and demons are actually of their own creation. Furthermore, they will come to learn that the devils and demons have no actual objective, external, and independent experience. These souls will learn that the devils and demons merely represent portions of their own psychological reality that to some extent are not assimilated, but are instead projected outside of them and symbolized as evil.
Evil and/or negative actions, symbols, objects, beings, or what-have-you, are the result of ignorance and misunderstanding. Evil is not an external force in itself and this will clearly come to be known by them eventually, and understood. Of course, this will all be under the guidance of the teachers that I speak about so very often. These master teachers are individual souls [just like you and me] except they are evolutionary leaps and bounds ahead of the souls they help.
These master teachers were physical once [just like us] and so they have the necessary emotional understanding and background to be of assistance here. Furthermore, each master teacher will have a “special emotional bond” with the particular soul in question. You must understand that the death experience is highly individualized and unique for each soul experiencing it. The death experience will have much to do with the nature of the individual’s experience it underwent throughout its lifetime.
Additionally involved here is the development of the soul itself, and its overall methods of handling experience. The ideas you have involving the nature of reality will strongly color your experiences, because you will interpret them in the light of your beliefs, even as now you interpret daily life according to the ideas you hold, of what is possible and what is not. You will always form your own reality according to your ideas and expectations. This is the nature of reality, in whatever form or reality consciousness finds itself.
You must use your abilities. The boredom and stagnation of a stereotyped heaven will not for long satisfy the striving consciousness, which is motivated to grow. Once again, you are never alone, as there are always teachers and guides to be of assistance to you to help you understand where you are at, and get you where you want to go. Furthermore, in all cases, their appearance will be that of a loved one who is known and trusted. Incidentally, the after death experience and the environment in which it takes place, is not necessarily some dark or grave place; quite the contrary, it is more intense, joyful, and full of love than the reality you know right now.
You will simply be learning to operate in a new environment in which different laws apply, and these laws are far less limiting than the physical ones with which you operate now. In other words, you will have to learn and understand to use new freedoms. Some souls prefer to rest after their earthly experience; it is always up to you. However, not only must you use your abilities after your death, but you must face up to those that you did not use during your previous existence.
Now, whether or not you will be greeted by family, and/or loved ones immediately following your death; as always, this is a highly personal and individual matter. Some souls may actually find that they are far more interested in others that they have known before [from other existences], than they are in those from the last immediate lifetime. Your true feelings towards relatives who are dead will be known to you, and to them as well. There is no hypocrisy or if you will, pretending to be what one is not on the other side. You do not pretend to love someone who did little to earn your respect or love.
Telepathy or thought transference operates without distortion in this after-death period. Therefore, you must deal with the true relationships that exist between you and all the relatives and friends that await you. You may even find that someone you considered your enemy actually deserved your love and respect, and so you will treat them accordingly. Your own motives will become crystal clear to you. Of course, you will react to this clearness in your own individual way.
You will not automatically be wise if you were not so already. However, neither will there be a way to hide your own feelings, emotions, or motives from yourself, or others. Whether or not you accept inferior motives in yourself, or learn from them, is still entirely up to you. It is true however, that the opportunities for growth and development are very abundant, and the learning methods at your disposal are very effective. You will examine the fabric of the lifetime you just left behind. You will learn to understand how your experiences were the results of your thoughts and emotions, and how this affected others.
Until you are finished with this examination, you are not yet aware of the larger portions of your own identity. When you realize the significance and meaning of the life you have just left, then you are ready for conscious knowledge of your other existences. You will then become aware of an expanded awareness in which what you are begins to include what you have been before. What you are includes what you have been in many, many previous existences, and so you begin the process of planning your next incarnation, or begin preparation to leave the reincarnational cycle entirely.
I should remind you here, that when I speak of you, I am not referring to only the part of you that you know as yourself, but I am also including your essence, or the part of you that is eternal. This eternal part of you existed before your particular existence was born and grown new this time around. It would be of much help here to you if you could keep in mind that what you know of yourself as being who and what you are, is very much limited in scope. Therefore, you will have to expand your intellectual and intuitive mind to grasp the significance of just what it is I am trying to say to you.
This ability is within you right now. In the afterlife, you will have a form with which to operate and move about. This form will appear physical to you to a large degree. For those who try to move around in the physical system with it [at the point of their death transition] the differences become immediately obvious. Most often, after the death experience and transition to the astral plane, the soul chooses a form that suits them best. For instance, it is not necessarily when they were at their most physically attractive and/or physically fit condition [although this does occur] that they will choose from, but more commonly, it is from when they were at the greatest mental and emotional heights or maturity in their life, that they will choose their form to be.
As always, this is a highly personal matter, and this form can be changed at will. Once again, all of this is very difficult to explain [at best] since there are so many variables to consider, let alone the semantic differences. I mean really, sometimes the words do nearly forsake me. For example, some individual souls, because of training and development [and often this occurs while they think they are asleep, and with no conscious recall of this in the morning, although their sleep may have been “disturbed”] which actually happens during the lifetime, are more fully aware of the true situation concerning the after-death environment when it occurs. After a brief rest, if they desire it, they are now ready to progress to other stages immediately, without having to go through the orientation process.
These souls might become aware of their own reincarnational selves, recognizing quite readily the previous personalities they have known before, if these other personalities are not otherwise engaged. These souls may also choose to hallucinate the “reliving” of certain portions of the life just exited, or even the other lives that have been experienced. There is a period of self-examination, a rendering of accounts, so to speak, in which they are able to view their entire performance.
They view their abilities and weak points, to decide whether to return to physical existence. Any given individual soul may experience any of these stages. Except for the self-examination period, many may be side-stepped by those who are finished with the entire reincarnational cycle of lives. Since the emotions are so very important, it is of great benefit if family or friends are waiting for you when you when you cross over. In many of these instances, the family or friend has actually progressed to other levels of activity.
In these cases, a teacher or guide will take the external appearance of the beloved family member or friend, for a while, so that you will be made to feel safe, secure, and loved. It is true that sometimes the beloved family member or friend is actually there waiting for you, or will return shortly, whereas other times this is not so. The after-death experience is just as organized, highly intricate, and involved as the life you now know. If you are paying attention to what I have been saying, it should be becoming clearer to you that there is no one after-death reality. Each experience is different and unique; in this way, it is no different from physical life.
Still, there are dimensions or levels [for lack of a better word or expression] into which the individual experiences will fall. For example, an initial stage exists where those who are still focused in physical reality, and need a longer period of recuperation and rest. On this level here, there will be hospitals and rest homes. At this level, the patients do not yet realize that nothing is wrong with them, or that anything has happened to them. In some of these cases, the idea of ill health is so strong, that they have built their earthly years around this psychological and emotional center.
They then project these conditions upon the new body in the afterlife, as they did with the old one. These souls here are given various kinds of treatments of a psychic nature, and little by little, are taught that the conditions of their body are being brought about by the nature of their own beliefs. Of course, many souls do not need to pass through this level of experience. I should also tell you that these hospitals and rest homes are not physical. In fact, they are often maintained en-masse by the guides and teachers who carry out the necessary plans. You may call this a mass hallucination if you wish, however, for those encountering this reality; the experienced events are as real as knowing that you are reading this right now.
There are also, training centers, and at this level, the nature of reality is explained in accordance with an individual’s ability to understand and perceive it. The familiar parables or simple stories will be used for some [at least initially] until they are gradually weaned away from them, as they learn of the true situation. In these centers, there are certain classes in which instruction is given for the benefit of those who choose to return to physical existence.
In other words, they are taught the methods that allow them to translate emotion and thought into physical reality. Here though, there is no time-lag like there is when physical, between the thoughts, feelings, emotions and the resulting materialization. Understand that for reasons of communication’s sake, I am simplifying all these matters considerably, as the actual conditions are beyond verbalization… (excerpted)
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Enjoy the changes coming into your lives,
(An Old Soul Spiritual Teacher)
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