RECOMMENDED BOOKS

Although I avoid evangelising or prosylitising mysticism, not even recommending or commenting on those who do, or their books and courses, I’m reminded I did recommend some of the following works when I started this Blog.

So I thought I’d bring them to your attention again, (with four additions, including obscure but very pure expositions of the mystical experience of Reality, (MER) by the medievalist nun Guyon and the medievalist priest, Molinos; Ron Krumpos’ interviews with leading mystics round the world; and Marsha Sinetar’s research into the experiences of 300 reluctant experiencers of MER.

I’ve also added my reason for recommending books on mysticism despite my former reluctance:

‘Paths Beyond Ego’ edited by Dr Roger Marsh and a colleague. This book is a wonderfully comprehenive collection of papers on mysticism by a whole host of eminent scholars and mystics from Buddhism, Hinduism, even Shamanism, including Ken Wilbur, Charles Tart,  Sri Aurobindo, William James, Ram Dass (!?), Aldous Huxley, the Dalai Lama, etc.  Even the effects of drugs are studied.

I only riffled through this book when it arrived and shelved it in one of my less used book cases unread because it was soiled throughout by the assumption humanity is the prime reason for Reality’s existence.

Today the book fell out before me in a tidying up effort I was making. As it was coffee time I sipped my coffee and the book’s contents then realised this book is a monumental modern contribution to the growing acceptance by humans of the mystic phenomena in all its historic forms, despite the book’s anthropomorphism.

The fact the book has been selling since its publication in 1905 is at least proof of some significance as a successful worldly tome on the subject of mysticism despite its limited human blemish.

Here is the list:

“The Greatest Achievement in Life” by Ron Krumpos who is a follower of this Blog. Ron writes of living in conscious oneness of the ultimate reality, found in Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Kabbalah, Sufism, and comparative mysticism.

This lengthy free ebook has been downloaded more than 70,000 times.

It summarizes many similarities among the mystical traditions and outlines different mystical approaches to life.

Interestingly, it states science has only addressed five per cent of ultimate reality.

The book was impressively inspired by the author’s meetings with 19 leading mystics in 12 countries, religious leaders/scholars of the five faiths and 10 professors who teach comparative mysticism across the U.S.A. Their suggestions led to many revisions prior to posting the book on the Internet.

Dr. Marsha Sinetar’s book, “Ordinary People as Monks and Mystics. This is a seminal book that should be on your library shelves, as I think you will agree.

Read my earlier review of Sinetar’s book.

The book is a remarkably readable, non scientifically jargonised account of her research and interviews with reluctant real experiencers of aspects of the mystical experience of MER and MER’s personal effects and unsocial behavioural consequences.

The Guyon and Molinos papers are unerringly to the point, short and absolutely pure, what I would even call divine if I was religious …

That Guyon and Molinos were so personally driven to risk giving such public witness of their MER experiences in those days is astonishing.

They were members of the Roman Catholic church. This church was the only supposed spiritual source available in the West in those days. It was ruthlessly intrusive, coercive, torturously, even violently deadly in its policing of everyone’s life, Taliban-like, the absolute antithesis of the MER that Guyon and Molinos experienced and wanted to share.

The following ‘classics’ are recommended too: Williams James’ “The Varieties of Religious Experience”, Aldous Huxley’s “The Perennial Philosophy”, Evelyn Underwood’s edition of “The Cloud of Unknowing”, Dr.Richard Maurice Bucke’s “Cosmic Consciousness” and the downloadable books by afore mentioned nun Guyon and priest Molinos, medieval writers who were persecuted by the Church for their temerity …

These books contain a lot of human dross but bits and pieces may or may not “speak to your condition” as the Quakers would say. I think parts or all of them could call loudly to you at various stages of your spiritual development. For that reason I recommend them and this whole list of books, as keepers to be part of any library you may have!

As a bonus I would add Matthew Arnold’s poem, “The Buried Life”. You can find this in full with a Search on this Blog. I discovered this poem early on my path. It was the beginning of my realisation my MERs were not uniquely mine!

Posts from mysticexperiences.net may be reblogged if you wish.

DEAD END SCIENCE?

So far as David Deutsche’s book The Fabric of Reality is concerned, it adds to my conviction scientists are inexplicably addicted to the spiritually irrelevant human attachment of curiosity – intellectual tourism – the human spirit rather than spirituality.

Deutsche seems to confirm this when he says right at the end of this book that all scientists are doing is looking for explanations about the world.

Are scientists blindly addicted to worldliness? If so, science is a dead end so fas as the mystic experience of Reality is concerned. Mystics don’t know the how of Reality either, but they have experienced It and do understand the evolutionary spiritual content in which this world and its humans temporarily exist.

Scientists have knowledge whereas mystics have understanding. This is another difference between the human spirit and Real spirituality – quite an abyss.

All Is Well.

Mysticexperiences.net

AN INTERVIEW PROPOSITION DECLINED.

Despite being told it would help circulate my book, I declined the following invitation received today, and my reply:

INVITATION: My name is Gary Cocciolillo I have a podcast called Everything Imaginable. I would love to have you as a guest. I record via Zoom with no video or we can do it over the phone. Would you be interested in being interviewed? I am booking for January. I will send you a link to schedule your interview.

“Here is a link to my podcast.
http://www.everythingimaginable2020.com

REPLY: Thank you for your invitation. I prefer keeping to emailing as that enables me to be as thorough and thoughtful about my answers and, more importantly, enables me to focus on my mystical experiences of Reality, rather than questions that are more to do with humanity.

Much of human ‘spirituality’ is only about trying to be better humans, which in my experiences is not what Reality, in which we live and breathe, is all about. It seems to me the human race is at a very primitive period of its evolution into the eventual extinction necessary to achieve its inevitable destiny. In the meantime, my experiences assure me most dramatically that, All Is Well. So I don’t see how being interviewed would suit more than just a passing curiosity in your audience …

That’s about it! That’s the summation of what I have learned so far. I was caught, not taught. I have no other qualification to have these convictions, so am loth to evangelise them except to Seekers, those as the Christian bible says “hunger and thirst” for it (Matthew 5:6). My blog and my five star book on Amazon do that to some modest extent I hope.

All best wishes,

Keith.

IN REVIEW: The Fifth Dimension – An Exploration of the Spiritual Realm by Dr John Hick

In this excerpt from his excellently illuminating book, The Fifth Dimension – An Exploration of the Spiritual Realm, Dr Hick acknowledges a general, but mistaken, public attitude to the mystical experience of Reality, namely:

Excerpt: “Experience of the natural environment is forced upon us, as we noted earlier, whereas experience of any supra-natural environment seems to be optional.”

No! There was nothing “optional” about my spontaneous MER experiences.

This spontenaity is not generally mentioned in the academic literature on the subject. It is commonly assumed it is experienced after much scholarly reading, the presence of a guru, or a strong adherement to religious doctrines. It is not.

Ancient and modern eastern literature agrees with me. It stresses MER cannot be achieved by learning. It’s “caught, not taught”. Did the biblical Jesus hint at this in his reference to the wind? The Dr Puri who wrote a book about Guru Nanak, (pub. SANT MAT), claimed it is spontanious too. The buddhists recognise this spontenaity, they call it pratyeka. Otherwise I haven’t come across any scholarly works that even mention the word “spontaneous”. But such scholarly works are mostly anthropomorphic anyway. They give the impression they believe the sun and moon only exist to revolve around the earth exclusively for humans ,,.

Dr Hick set out to show there is more than just matter, the physical existence of things, that there is also non matter – a “fifth dimension” not known by science, experiment, religion, philosophy, physics, the senses, logic or reason, only through experience of It: “the spiritual realm”.

All Is Well.

John Harwood Hick (20 January 1922 – 9 February 2012) was a philosopher of religion and theologian born in England who taught in the United States for the larger part of his career. In philosophical theology, he made contributions in the areas of theodicy, eschatology, and Christology, and in the philosophy of religion he contributed to the areas of epistemology of religion and religious pluralism. (Google).

Mysticexperiences.net

“SHAKING THE WORLD AWAKE”: AN INTERFAITH MULTIPLE CASE STUDY OF SPIRITUALLY ADVANCED SOCIAL CHANGE AGENTS

by Katherine Elizabeth Coder, Miami University

A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Transpersonal Psychology Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Palo Alto, California.

Review: This paper appears to present Reality as a “spiritually advanced social change agent”. My reading of the Abstract is that it’s suggesting “spiritually advanced social change agents (will) enable positive and healthy transformation” into selves. I presume this means as selves “in (an) increasingly integral epoch.” Ie: a world collective? That is, spirituality being politicised?

Nothing in my multiple yearly experiences of the Mystical Experience of Reality (MER) over 15 years suggests anything of the kind. This smacks of human politics, leftwing politics in particular.

This is at variance with the mystical experience of Reality, (MER).

Humans are in an individual process of development into Reality, not into a “socially engaged spirituality”. Reality is not socially engaged. Reality is going about its own ineffable business, not ours. This individual development is only by Reality, from outside the human condition. Reality’s development is not concocted by human brains or minds.

Is this development into Reality what leading physicist Dr. David Chalmers (‘Facing up to the hard problem of consciousness’) has described as “the hard question” that currently – and possibly infinitely – baffles scientific or political method?

There is an abyss of consciousness between the repeatable experimental methods of science and the individual but similar, at least 12,000 year old culturally non specific experiences of mystics.

Fortunately, if this paper is anything to go by, humans have not been trusted individually or collectively to have any say whatsoever in this process by Reality!  Reality is enough.

The following is the Abstract that comes with the paper. The full paper is available as a free PDF download at Academia.edu.

Abstract: “This dissertation is a qualitative study of socially engaged spirituality as practiced by spiritually advanced social change agents. The research question was “What is characteristic of social change agents identified as spiritually advanced?” This research came on the heels of the burgeoning movement of socially engaged spirituality and its many applications within an increasingly integral epoch.

As a growing phenomenon, socially engaged spirituality is discussed in lay and scholarly theoretical literature but little studied empirically. While advanced levels of spiritual development are theorized and proven to be beneficial to individuals, the combined study of advanced levels of spiritual development within socially engaged spirituality is evenless studied.

This phenomenon was investigated by conducting multiple case studies of 3 exemplar-networks from Buddhist, Christian, and Native American faith traditions. Two female exemplars and 1 male exemplar participated who ranged in ages from 37 to 79 years old and whooriginated from 3 different nations.

The data collected through in-depth semi-structured interviews, documents, and direct and participant observation were analyzed using a synthesis of case study and constructivist grounded theory. Cross case analysis determined the qualities of the phenomenon of spiritually advanced social change agency.

Results included 3 individual case narratives, a cross case report highlighting the major characteristics of spiritually advanced socialchange agency, and a theoretical model of its emergent dynamic. The findings suggested that spiritually advanced social change agents enabled positive and healthy transformation of self.”

Mysticexperiences.net

Another review of MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY

403-page paperback and ebook by Keith

“I am already 3/4 through Mystical Experience Of RealityI read it at the end of the day before going to sleep.  Usually, I am already very tired, which is why I am not finished reading it yet because I want to “absorb” the words.

It is very profound and I truly believe you experienced what you did and are still experiencing.  There are so many (countless) phenomenon and wonders in this world, which God Himself only knows the meaning of and which we all will eventually come to understand when we return to Him.

God has endowed you with very special privileges which you have very effectively endeavored to share with us and to which I am very grateful that you did because it just proves all the more to me at how limitless God’s blessings are!”

Mayan Siojo, Vancouver

NEARLY FIVE STARS!

When an edited version of UK Blog follower Anthony Garner’s review of the 413-page paperback “Mystic Experience of Reality” by the publisher of this Blog appeared on AmazonBooks.com the book was immediately given five out of five stars.

Unfortunately when Amazon realised it had been submitted by BookLocker.com, the book’s publisher, the rating was withdrawn because Amazon only accepts reviews directly. Stars are not given by Amazon.

So now Anthony’s generous review is published as a description of the book, and the notice that the book has not yet been reviewed remains.

Unfortunately another enthusiastic review has been submitted by a Vancouver, BC., Canada, writer and will likely receive the same fate because it was sent to Keith who sent it to BookLocker.com who sent it on to Amazon!

So if you want to review the book I hope you will send your thoughts about it directly to “Mystic Experience of Reality” at Amazon.com

In the meantime, since the book’s publication, Academia.edu reports nearly 500 mentions of Keith’s name in academic papers from universities in the US, Asia, Middle East, and Europe. Note: all these Hancocks don’t necessarily mean Keith. But most of the mentions are specifically on spirituality, religion, transpersonal psychology, the cognitive sciences, consciousness, transcendence, etc.

For your interest, the version of Anthony’s review, that appears edited on the Amazon web page promoting the book is as follows:

“There are certain activities or states of mind which trigger in me what Abraham Maslow calls “peak experiences”. Reading Keith Hancock’s book, “Mystical Experience of Reality” does just that. Phrases in Keith’s book take me to treasured places. When reading Keith’s words, I feel a deep calling to that state of disembodied serenity. So much of what Keith says, so much of what he describes and the way he tells it rings true to me, speaks of the experiences I have felt. Keith had a series of mystic experiences and in this book he describes both his own mystic experiences and quotes extensively from the writing of others on the subject. – Anthony Garner, zenothestoic.com

The book is also available as an ebook. It is also published in the UK, and is available through bookshops worldwide. It has already sold in Australia, UK, and Canada.

Mysticexperiences.net

OFFERS TO PROMOTE THE BOOK

My Reply:

No thank you.

I’ve found my new book, MYSTIC EXPERIENCE OF REALITY, pub. BookLocker, is finding its own readers – those who are bewildered by an apparent calling they don’t understand, as well as by scientists and academics who are puzzled by the historical mystic phenomena the book is all about; and others, still secret mystics, who are comforted by the validation the contents offer. They are the ones who have moments of sudden understanding when they come across contents in the book they thought only they had experienced.

The book is not meant for the merely curious who are not called to it by their inner promptings.

I’m also seeing this happen with my blog, mysticexperiences.net.

ACADEMIA POURING OUT CONJECTURE ON MYSTICISM

Academia.edu tells me the web page has found 25,450 papers on comparative mysticism written by academics in leading universities around the world.

I’ve downloaded and read three. If these are anything to go by, academia is merely pouring out papers on mysticism that are cannibalised from other works, some famous, some obscure, some historical, some newer – with conjecture and commentary thrown in using jargon presumably aimed at other academics who will be deciding the authors’ academic reputations/careers. (Is Dr David Chalmers’ plea for science and academia to jettison jargon falling on barren ground?).

Not all the conjecture and commentary is new or originally expressed, either. Nevertheless, the impression is given of a wider and growing scientific/academic acceptance of the phenomena and its main attributes. I don’t know if this is a good or relevant thing or not. My experience is that Reality, having given existence all it needs, isn’t much distracted by human wants.

None of the three papers I read claim any actual experience of the mystical experience of Reality, (MER).

Based on my multiple annual experiences of MER over 15 years or so I conjecture that those who have had MER are receivers of an outer, non biological ineffable experience, and are not mere generators of MER based on their human wishes, experiences, brains, minds, consciousnesses, or souls as some of these works suggest.

Where did and do these wild assertive imaginings come from?

Mysticexperiences.net

“MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY” NOW ON KOBO TOO

Follw this link to access Mystical Experience of Reality on Kobo.


The Mystical Experience of Reality is a well known non-biological, non-human historical phenomena that engulfed the author as a 14 year-old several times every year until his late thirties, filling him with the experience of a Reality in which all things known and unknown exist at Its behest, guarding, guiding, accepting everything that exists separately, personally, individually. It is benign and uninterested in human wants or constructs such as religions, politics, ideologies. READ MORE

BOOK GOES eBOOK

Keith’s “MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY” now eBook

416-pager goes international

The ebook edition of MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY is now available at the following URLs (Kobo is taking longer than usual to process the file – we will notify you once it becomes available):

The ebook edition of MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY was also cleared for sale on OverDrive. Kobo uploads books to OverDrive every Sunday; 2-4 weeks after that, it becomes available for purchase to libraries and schools that have an OverDrive account.

You can check whether your local libraries have access to OverDrive.

If you would like to know more about OverDrive please see this Booklocker newsletter.

Mysticexperiences.net

January 2020

eBook Version of MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE OF REALITY

In two to three weeks the eBook version of Mystical Experience of Reality is planned to appear on the four most popular eBook retailers – Amazon’s Kindle store, Apple’s iBook store, Barnes & Noble’s Nook store, and Kobo (Canada’s popular eBook retailer), as well as BookLocker.com, the book’s publisher, where you can get the book in PDF, ePub or Kindle format.
Your comments and suggestions will be most welcome. 

WORK: A SPIRITUAL HUMAN DISTRACTION, A CURSE?

 

The Maniacal Laughter of the Damned: Why you can live and work in the real world without making a deal with the Devil

by Randy Vaughan

237 pages. Available from Booklocker.com

An open disputation of the myth of a so-called work ethic.

COMMENT: This ebook from Booklocker.com is recommended to all Seekers having a hard time surviving their conflict with human inconsequentialities. The following is from Booklocker’s catalogue, printed here with their permission.

About the Book

The simple fact is this:

There are two realities operating simultaneously regarding employment in this country. There are the occupations and careers requiring college education, degrees, and titles.

And then there are those for everyone else.

So what does a person who leaves high school and goes to college for four, eight, or more years and then moves into that specific field for which he has studied and trained—what does someone like that really know about working in America, really know about the hiring process, truly understand about looking for, landing, and keeping a job?

The answer to that one is easy: Nothing.

The Maniacal Laughter of the Damned: Why you can live and work in the real world without making a deal with the Devil is a non-fiction book that openly and convincingly disputes the myth of a so-called work ethic to conclude that the biggest mistake this country ever made was to confuse education for intelligence.

Contrary to conventional wisdom there is not more to life than working and making money. There is only life. In the final analysis, the only true ethical dilemma takes the form of a question made up of just seven words:

“How far are you willing to go?”

For nothing more than money and the stuff it will buy, how far are you, personally, willing to go? Are you going to live your life on your terms or someone else’s?

The Maniacal Laughter of the Damned will show you why answering that one question can and will lead to everything you would ever need or want to know about not only working, but also living, in the real world.

Anyone trying to make sense of the relationships and ensuing conflicts encountered daily in the workplace will find that this book gives words and meaning to what are often just feelings and intuitions. Readers can and will relate to the many stories told throughout the pages. Some make you laugh, others make you angry, and some leave your shaking your head in total disbelief.

So if you have ever worked for someone else as an employee, ever filled out a job application, sat through a job interview, or if there is a chance you will do this in the future, you will want this book. It tells the sometimes painful, sometimes incredulous and inane, truth that is the very stuff of working for a living.


Randy Vaughan lives in national obscurity in the Blue Ridge mountains of southwest Virginia. With some sixty employers in his past, he still has no answer for “What do you want to be when you grow up?” He fears “growing up” amounts to giving up his very personhood.

MER A SCIENTIFIC “QUALIA” AFTER ALL?

Has Dr David Chalmers discovered that “Qualia”, Consciousness, and “Strong Emergence”, are radical, newly discovered, fundamental, absolutely non-human elements of the cosmos?  Is he describing the Mystic Experience of Reality (MER)?

It sounds like it to this mystic.

Qualia – Wikipedia: “In philosophy and certain models of psychology, qualia (/ˈkwɑːliə/ or /ˈkweɪliə/; singular form: quale) are defined to be individual instances of subjective, conscious experience.”

Emergence: “the process of becoming visible after being concealed, the process of coming into existence or prominence.”

See David Chalmers’ interviews on Closer To Truth:

The first interview has attracted 445 comments, including some asinine remarks sadly expected in social media nowadays. Other comments contain seriously interesting perspectives.

Is Dr Chalmers introducing a new era of scientific thought, that the Mystical Experience of Reality (MER), is after all, “qualia”, “Strong non-human Emergence”, Consciousness?

Bearing in mind the scientific community uses the word ‘ineffable’ to describe MER, (“too great or extreme to be expressed or described in words”), is Dr. Chalmers’ now suggesting an historical, scientific leap forward in human evolution, a birthing?

If so, is the modern mystical experience the same experience the ancients called “God” that became smothered in religion, ideologised, politicised with human misunderstanding and spiritual disappointment, unfulfillment?

Has the paradigm of the human condition shifted?


Dr. David John Chalmers is a world renowned, rising young figure in the world of science. He is a philosopher at New York University and the Australian National University,  Professor of Philosophy and co-director of the Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness at NYU, and also a Professor of Philosophy at ANU.

Mysticexperiences.net

Can You Achieve MER on Your Own?

 

Dr. Paul Brunton tells us how he came to what he calls “spiritual consciousness”, in his book, THE SECRET PATH – a modern technique of Self Discovery:

“My confidence stands serene that I can make good my thesis against all comers, but only if they are prepared to undertake the same psychological experiments which I undertook. The thoughts I now give out did not come to me after long argument; they came after long experience. Whoever, therefore, would understand them aright, must be willing to invite the same experience, and this will come readily enough if he is to keep on finding truth as he is on his other and more mundane affairs.”


Paul Brunton is the pen name of Raphael Hurst, a British theosophist and spiritualist. He is best known as one of the early popularizers of Neo-Hindu spiritualism in western esotericism, notably via his bestselling A Search in Secret India. Died: July 27, 1981, Vevey, Switzerland”
Wikipedia.

THE SECRET PATH was published in 1988 as a second printing by Samuel Weiser Inc., Box 612, York Beach, Maine., USA, 03910, but was first published in London, England, in 1935. This was one of 11 of Brunton’s books on the subject.

See www.paulbrunton.org for the Paul Brunton Philosophic Foundation.

Mysticexperiences.net