Seth Speaks, Session 538
“Death” Conditions In Life
After-death experiences will not seem so alien or incomprehensible if you realize that you encounter similar situations as a normal part of your present existence.
In sleep and dream states you are involved in the same dimension of existence in which you will have your after-death experiences. You do not remember the most important part of these nightly adventures, and so those you do recall seem bizarre or chaotic as a rule. This is simply because in your present state of development you are not able to manipulate consciously within more than one environment.
You do exist consciously in a coherent, purposeful creative state while the physical body sleeps, however, and you carry on many of the activities that I told you would be encountered after death. You simply turn the main focus of your attention in a different dimension of activity, one in which you have indeed continuously operated.
Now, as you have memory of your waking life and as you retain a large body of such memory for daily physical encounters, and as this fount of memory provides you with a sense of daily continuity, so also does your dreaming self have an equally large body of memory. As there is continuity to your daily life, so there is continuity in your sleeping life.
A portion of you, therefore, is aware of each and every dream encounter and experience. Dreams are no more hallucinatory than your physical life is. Your waking physical self is the dreamer, as far as your dreaming self is concerned: You are the dreamer it sends on its way. Your daily experiences are the dreams that it dreams, so when you look at your dreaming self or consider it, you do so with a highly prejudiced eye, taking it for granted that your “reality” is real, and its reality is illusion.
Its reality is far more native to your being, however. If you do not find coherence in the dream state, it is because you have hypnotized yourselves into believing that none exists. Of course you try to translate your nightly adventures into physical terms upon awakening, and attempt to fit them into your often limited distortion of the nature of reality.
To some extent this is natural. You are focused in daily life for a reason. You have adopted it as a challenge. But within its framework you are also meant to grow and develop, and to extend the limits of your consciousness. It is very difficult to admit that you are in many ways more effective and creative in the sleep state than the waking state, and somewhat shattering to admit that the dream body can indeed fly, defying both time and space. It is much easier to pretend that all such experiences are symbolic and not literal, to evolve complicated psychological theories, for example, to explain flying dreams.
The simple fact is that when you dream you are flying, you often are. In the dream state you operate under the same conditions, more or less, that are native to a consciousness not focused in physical reality. Many of your experiences therefore, are precisely those you may meet after death. You may speak with dead friends or relatives, revisit the past, greet old classmates, walk down streets that existed fifty years earlier in physical time, travel through space without taking any physical time to do so, be met by guides, be instructed, teach others, perform meaningful work, solve problems, hallucinate.
In physical life there is a lag between the conception of an idea and its physical construction. In dream reality, this is not so. Therefore, the best way to become acquainted with after-death reality ahead of time, so to speak, is to explore and understand the nature of your own dreaming self. Not very many people want to take the time and energy.
The methods are available, however, and those who do use them will not find themselves alienated when the full focus of their attention is turned in that direction after death.
Since your conscious memory is connected so strongly with awareness within the body, although you leave the body when it sleeps, the waking consciousness usually has no memory of this.
In the sleeping state, you have memory of everyone you have ever met in your dreams, though you may or may not have met some of these people in your daytime existence. In the sleeping state you may have constant experience throughout the years with close associates who may live in another portion of the world entirely, and be strangers to you in the waking state.
As your daily endeavors have meaning and purpose, so do your dream adventures, and in these also you attain various goals of your own. These you will continue in the after-death experience. The vitality, force, life, and creativity behind your physical existence are generated in this other dimension. In other words, you are in many ways a fleshy projection of your dreaming self.
The dreaming self as you conceive of it, however, is but a shadow of its own reality, for the dreaming self is a psychological point of reference and, in your terms, of continuity, that brings together all portions of your identity. Of its deeper nature, only the most developed are aware. It represents, in other words, one strong uniting facet of your entire identity. Its experiences are as vivid and its “personality” as rich – in fact richer – in context as the physical personality you know.
Pretend for a moment that you are a child, and I am trying to undertake the particular chore of explaining to you what your most developed adult self will be like – and in my explanation, I say that this adult self is to some extent already a part of you, an outgrowth or projection of what you are. And the child says, “But what will happen to me? Must I die to become this other self? I do not want to change. How can I ever be this adult self when it is not what I am now, without dying as what I am?”
I am in somewhat the same position when I try to explain to you the nature of this inner self, for while you can become aware of it in dreams, you cannot truly appreciate its maturity or abilities; yet they are yours in the same way that the man’s abilities belonged to the child. In the dream state you learn, among other things, how to construct your own physical reality day by day, just as after death you learn how to construct your next physical lifetime.
In dreams you solve the problems. In the daytime you are (only) consciously aware of the methods of problem solving that you learned in sleep. In dreams you set your goals, as after death you set the goals for another incarnation.
Now, no psychological structure is easy to describe in words. Simply to explain the nature of personality as it is generally known, all kinds of terms are used: id, subconscious ego, superego; all of these to differentiate in the interweaving actions that make up the physical personality. The dreaming self is just as complicated. So you can say that certain portions of it deal with physical reality, physical manipulation, and plans; some with deeper levels of creativity and achievement that insure physical survival; some with communication, with even more extensive elements of the personality now generally unknown; some with the continuing experience and existence of what you may call the soul or overall individual entity, the true multidimensional self.
The soul creates the flesh. The creator hardly looks down upon its creation. The soul creates the flesh for a reason, and physical existence for a reason, so none of this is to lead you to a distaste for physical life, nor toward a lack of appreciation for those sensual joys with which you are surrounded. Any inner journeys should allow you to find greater significance, beauty, and meaning in life as you know it now; but full enjoyment and development also means that you use all of your abilities, that you explore inner dimensions with as much wonder and enthusiasm. With proper understanding, therefore, it is quite possible for you to become quite familiar now with after-death landscapes and environments and experiences. You will find them to be as vivid as any you know. Such explorations will completely alter somber preconceptions about existence after death. It is very important that you divest yourself of as many preconceptions as possible, however, for these will impede your progress.
Generally speaking, if you are fairly content about physical reality, you are in a better position to study these inner environments.
If you see evil all about you in physical life, and if it seems to outweigh the good, then you are not ready. You should not embark upon an exploration of these nightly adventures if you are depressed, for at this time your own psychic state is predisposed toward depressing experiences, whether awake or asleep. You should not embark upon such a study if you hope to substitute inner experience for physical experience.
If your ideas of good and evil are rigorous, unbending, then you do not have the understanding that is necessary for any conscious manipulation in this other dimension. In other words, you should be as flexible mentally, psychologically, and spiritually as possible, open to new ideas, creative, and not overly dependent upon organizations or dogma.
You should be fairly competent and sympathetic. At the same time you should be outgoing enough in your physical environment so that you are capable of handling your life as it is. You need all your resources. This is to be an active exploration and endeavor, not a passive withdrawal, and certainly not a cowardly retreat. Toward the end of this book, methods will be given for those who are interested so that you can explore these after-death conditions consciously, having some control over your experiences and progress.
Here, however, I want to describe these conditions somewhat more thoroughly. Now, in physical life you see what you want to see. You perceive from the available field of reality certain data – data selected carefully by you in accordance with your ideas of what reality is. You create the data to begin with.
If you believe all men are evil, you simply will not experience the goodness in men. You will be completely closed to it. They in turn will always show you their worst side. You will telepathically see to it that others dislike you, and you will project your dislike upon them.
Your experience, in other words, follows your expectations. Now the same applies to after-death experience and to the dream experience, and to any out-of-body encounters. If you are obsessed with the idea of evil, then you will meet evil conditions. If you believe in devils, then you will encounter these. As I mentioned earlier, there is greater freedom when consciousness is not physically directed. Thoughts and emotions are constructed, again, into reality without the physical time lapse. So if you believe you will be met by a demon, you will create your own thought-form of one, not realizing that it is your own creation.
Therefore, if you find yourself concentrating upon the evils of physical existence in such a manner, then you are not ready for such explorations. It is, of course, possible under such conditions to meet a thought-form belonging to someone else, but if you do not believe in demons to begin with, you will always recognize the nature of the phenomena and be unharmed.
If it is your own thought-form, then, in fact, you may learn from it by asking yourself what it represents, what problem that you have so materialized. Now you may hallucinate the same sort of thing after death, use it for a symbol, and undergo a spiritual battle of sorts that would, of course, not be necessary had you more understanding. You will work out your ideas, problems or dilemmas at your own level of understanding.