Thanks for this post, Michael, and for everyone who commented. I ordered the book today and am looking forward to reading. One thing I hope the book addresses is how the deceased combatants view their participation in war and killing in war. Do they carry the same hatred of the “enemy” after death? Or does the next state enlighten them in some way? My hope is that there would be an understanding that any act that engenders killing, destruction, loss and suffering is among the lowest forms of human expression.
Anthony, Thu 14 Mar, 05:05
I hope in earthly trials Judge Hatch presided over he was more tolerant of human frailty than this Beautiful Being.
A lot of us went through an early period of atheism or skepticism about having an immortal soul. If we had died during that stage of our growth, would we have been condemned to sleep for thousands of years after crossing over? I like my sleep but would set my alarm for a few years later at most.
Rick Darby, Thu 7 Mar, 18:17
Amos, what prompted me was Kevin’s interesting comment about soul sleep. Not being a biblical scholar it hadn’t occurred to me before that the idea of soul sleep could well have come from the ‘observation’ that sometimes people who are convinced that the death of the body is the end, experience never-ending nothingness, (if that’s the right word) or so we are told.
The notion that people sleep in their graves until the trumpet blows has always seemed odd to me and it’s probably spawned a generation of zombie films which even now seem to be more popular than ever.
If there’s any truth in some of the Biblical quotations, when John said, “Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice,” maybe what he meant was, that no-one will remain in that state indefinitely.
Irrespective of all of this, it seems to me there is no downside in knowing, believing, assuming and accepting that after our body is no longer viable we continue in some form. After all, if we are wrong we’ll probably never know.
Jon, Thu 7 Mar, 09:02
Thanks for that comment and link. If those words actually came from Patterson and were not colored by Elsa Barker’s mind, they say a lot.
Michael Tymn, Thu 7 Mar, 04:56
Michael and Jon,
Amos Oliver Doyle, Wed 6 Mar, 22:50
It has been many, many years since I first read “Letters From a Living Dead Man” transcribed from Judge Hatch by Elsa Baker. I think it was one of the first books of that kind that I read. Thanks Michael and Jon for bringing it up to remind me. As I read what you quoted Jon, and the rest of the article to which you linked, I realize that I understand and appreciate much more of what was said now than I did 20 or 30 years ago when I first read it. (Apparently I have learned a few things along the way.) So I shall have to dig it out of my library somewhere and re-read it. - AOD
In “Letters from a Living Dead Man” the deceased Judge Hatch communicating via Elsa Barker discusses with a Beautiful Being (his teacher) the status of people in so-called soul sleep. Here’s an excerpt and a link.
MANY times during the months in which I have been here have I seen men and women lying in a state of unconsciousness more profound than the deepest sleep, their faces expressionless and uninteresting. At first, before I understood the nature of their sleep, I tried as an experiment to awaken one or two of them, and was not successful. In certain cases, where my curiosity was aroused, I have returned later, day after day, and found them still lying in the same lethargy.
“Why,” I asked myself, “should any man sleep like that—a sleep so deep that neither the spoken word nor the physical touch could arouse him?” One day, when the Teacher was with me, we passed one of those unconscious men whom I had seen before, had watched, and had striven unsuccessfully to arouse.
“Who are these people who sleep like that?” I asked the Teacher, and he replied: “They are those who in their earth life denied the immortality of the soul after death.”
“How terrible!” I said. “And will they never awaken?”
“Yes, perhaps centuries, perhaps ages hence, when the irresistible law of rhythm shall draw them out of their sleep, into incarnation. For the law of rebirth is one with the law of rhythm.”
jon, Wed 6 Mar, 21:39
I wanted to quote William James on my last comment, but I couldn’t find the quote. I have since found it. It appeals to reason, I think.
“If religion be a function by which either God’s cause or man’s cause is to be really advanced, then he who lives the life of it, however narrowly, is a better servant than he who merely knows about it, however much. Knowledge about life is one thing; effective occupation of a place in life, with its dynamic currents passing through your being, is another.”
Michael Tymn, Wed 6 Mar, 17:31
Kevin and Bart,
Many thanks for contributing to the discussion with those ideas. They do seem to apply. I do struggle to believe that a very righteous person would “sleep” indefinitely because he bought into the belief that we sleep until some far off judgment day. Hopefully, a spirit guide will attempt to bring him or her out of the stupor.
Michael Tymn, Wed 6 Mar, 16:51
Great article Michael. It reminds also me of how throughout history, many Christians (specifically Jehovah’s Witness and Seventh Day Adventists) and Muslims—among many other people—have believed in the idea of “soul sleep”. This is the repulsive doctrine that people sleep, supposedly in their graves, until the “Last Judgment” at which time their corpses come alive and come out of their graves which I can only imagine to be somewhat like the movie “The Night of the Living Dead.” However, near-death experiences prove how this doctrine is not only false, but is a very harmful doctrine to believe in. The following are NDE insights showing the dangers of believing in this doctrine:
Dr. George Ritchie observed the following in his NDE: “One of the places we observed seemed to be a receiving station. Beings would arrive here oftentimes in a deep hypnotic sleep. I call it hypnotic because I realized they had put themselves in this state by their beliefs. Here were what I would call angels working with them trying to arouse them and help them realize God is truly a God of the living and that they did not have to lie around sleeping until Gabriel or someone came along blowing on a horn.”
NDEr Arthur Yensen had this to say, “Things change little in the hereafter. Suppose we have the fixed idea that we’ll sleep till the resurrection of the body. Then suppose there isn’t a resurrection of the body. We might sleep a very long time.”
P.M.H. Atwater wrote this about believing in soul sleep: “Those that died believing they would sleep until awakened by Gabriel, reported a black darkness, a feeling of being trapped and alone, stranded. What I’ve finally come to realize is we truly and most literally create our own realities. When we die, the reality we created is where we will live and what we will become.”
The late great NDEr and psychic Betty Bethards has this to say about merely not believing in life after death: “You will probably be kept in a sleep state for the first two to three day period. You will wake up in a beautiful meadow or some other calm and peaceful place where you can reconcile the transition from the death state to the continuous life. You are given teachings in the hope that you do not refuse to believe that you are dead.”
Psychic automatic writer Ruth Montgomery has this to say about a person who does not believe in life after death: “He expects to find nothing when he passes through the door called death, and for a long time that is usually what he finds - nothing. He is in a state like unto death for a goodly while, until at last something arouses him.”
Concerning people dying in combat, those soldiers who do cross over in a sleep state may do so because of an atheistic mind set. But I suspect the trauma of combat, of dying in battle, the thousand yard stare, etc.. could cause such soldiers to cross over in a sleep state where there are “afterlife hospitals” for such souls to recover from very traumatic deaths. IO have heard about such “afterlife hospitals” in the NDE literature. My two cents worth.
Kevin Williams, Wed 6 Mar, 07:26
I’m an observer and reporter, not an authority on the subject, so I can’t really answer your questions. At the same time, I doubt that any “authority” on the subject has an answer.
Although I have read hundreds of NDE accounts, I have not categorized them to the extent that I can recall more than a few of the military experiences. However, the big difference here, I believe, is that the NDErs are still attached to the body by the “silver cord” while the discarnates reporting through mediums have “given up the ghost.” How that factors into what they are experiencing, I don’t know.
As you know, there have been many “hellish” experiences reported by NDErs, and those experiences may be similar to the souls who have not awakened to the afterlife environment. The best reference I have come across on the hellish experiences is “Blessing in Disguise,” by the late Barbara R. Rommer, M.D., published in 2000.
As many researchers have suggested, we don’t hear as much about the hellish experiences, because people are reluctant to talk about them and they likely do not make for “best-selling” books. It may also be that people who do not remember NDEs have had hellish types, but have blocked them out.
The simulacrum is another subject on which there seems to a lack of information But take a look at my blog of February 7, 2011 in the archives at the left. It involves the historic “ape man” materialization. I recommend the reports and books by Drs. Charles Richet and Gustav Geley for a little better understanding of thought forms.
Michael Tymn, Tue 5 Mar, 21:24
Fascinating essay Michael. Today, when someone dies suddenly, how often we hear people say that at least it was a good way to go, because it was quick and relatively painless. But all the evidence you present suggests quite the opposite; that it’s better to have time to contemplate one’s death and become mentally prepared to leave the Earth plane behind. This view is supported by ancient Hindu and Tibetan Buddhist beliefs that a sudden death in the midst of activity is inauspicious, for the reasons brought to light by your essay. I think this is particularly true for a young person who is deeply engaged in life and has much to look forward to.
The great sage, Brahamananda Saraswati, Shankaracharya of Jotir Math said that we should be ready for death at every moment, like a person with bags packed.
Bart Walton, Tue 5 Mar, 20:30
A very thought provoking anthology and a great review. As i was pondering this book two questions occured to me: Why are NDE accounts of veterans (I understand from IANDs that 50% of severely injured veterans have had them) seem so different to the mediumistic accounts. We know that about 90% are positive transcendent experiences. Does this suggest that the NDErs have a different experience because they were never going to die?
Maryam, Tue 5 Mar, 13:42
I am also interested in finding out about the concept of the simulacrum spirit, which appears to be a thought form. Are there more indepth references to this in the afterlife literature and could there be a correlation with the Buddhist tulpa or the thought form referred to by Seth in the spirit realm?
God bless you for helping those who died violently in war to wake up to a benign afterlife. For some of these poor soldiers, it will be the first peace they have known.
Rick Darby, Mon 4 Mar, 21:55
Michael Schmicker, Mon 4 Mar, 19:11
Sounds like a very interesting book.
I’ll look for it.
This book is very much needed in this world since the history of mankind is full of violence and war.
At our spirit sessions we have had innumerable soldiers communicate…from the times of the Romans through the centuries and to those in the present, in war-like conflicts.
How horrible it is to be in the midst of battle and be killed and continue “feeling” wounded but carrying on looking for fellow soldiers on
a battlefield of the spirit’s own construct. Sometimes there are several spirits that band together. They don’t know the war is over, they are looking for their fellows or where to report next.
Some are in terrible conditions not aware the “wounds” they carry were left on their physical bodies which no longer exists.
We speak with compassion and patience, ascertaining the details of their last memories and coax them to awaken to their current
spiritual state of circumstances.
Spirit guides assist us, and come for them in a form these poor ones can relate to and feel comfortable with (ex. older dear relatives, monks, nuns, etc.) to reach out to them and convince them it is time they need to leave the ravages of war behind them to go to a place to find healing and peace.
This type of work is a charity and we consider it a sacred trust.
Respectfully and Sincerely,
Yvonne Limoges, Mon 4 Mar, 18:59
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