Altered States of Consciousness

I’ve been interested in various states of consciousness for a long time. I’m interested because I am unwilling to ignore the strange stutters in consensus or accepted reality that many people label “coincidence.” Between 1997 and 1999, I was involved with a group of people interested in exploring dreams, the symbolic language in dreams, and the real life impact dreams have upon our lives. We met every week for two years.

During these two years, strange incidents occurred among us for which no common explanation was ever found. For instances, eight of us met one evening and five of us reported that we rode a  bicycle in our dream. None of the five even owned bicycles. Another time, a woman in the group had a dream where she and I are together. We are listening to a man talk who is up on a stage and she turns to me and says, “What did he say, Martha?” and then she awoke.  She told me about this dream and the next night I am in her dream and she turns to me and says, “What did he say, Martha?” The next time we meet I was able to tell her the man said. “Together we stand like children before the Divine and wonder at the powers of love.”

During this time I came to the conclusion that consciousness is not restricted to our physical bodies and consciousness is not limited to linear time. The rules of normal reality apply only to those who believe they are real. In other words, we build our own prison walls.

When I first began using social media, I didn’t notice anything unusual at first. But as time passed and I began connecting with more people, I noticed strange telepathic happenings occur. I don’t think I’m the only one who has noticed these psychic shocks and would appreciate hearing from others on this topic.

So here is my question : Could it be that when we enter the world of social media, the mind drifts out of the body, just as it does it the dream state? If this is true perhaps what we’ve created with The Internet is an extension of the collective unconscious. Furthermore, if we’ve created a working sub-station of the collective unconscious, then the impossible could be waiting right around the  next corner. Unfortunately, not everyone will notice or care.

copyright © 2013 Martha Fawcett

 

One thought on “Altered States of Consciousness

  1. Catherine Clark Boccuto: I really dislike it when people say, I’m your “real” friend, those other people on FB are not your real friends. I have real friendships on here and feel very connected to certain friends. Most of the people that I have connections to, have similar qualities. They are usually very creative, either artists, writers, or poets. I feel that we are living on the same frequency. Sounds strange but I think that our capacity to evolve includes the area of communication.
    Sunday at 9:21pm via mobile · Like · 2

    Alexander Herndon: This was actually an important component of my Masters Thesis in Philosophy: Computers as Extension of the Physical and Metaphysical Human Mind Compared to Other Modern Inventions as Extensions of Human Physical Work. Basically I argued that computers are extensions of human mental efforts much like a bulldozer is an extension of human work. Since the human mind is the the domain and interpreter of metaphysical phenomena, then it is inevitable that computers will also extend our innate metaphysical sensibilities. The magnetic fields of the computers and the fields of humans interacting with each other through hardware (keyboard, mouse, mic) effect each other in ways we do not fully realize yet. As computers become more complex and interactions further blur the lines between analog and digital, we will begin to explore worlds of metaphysical dimension we haven’t even imagined yet. IMHO
    Yesterday at 12:30am · Like · 2

    Catherine Clarke Boccuto: Alexander can you share more about your thesis? Please.
    22 hours ago via mobile · Like

    Alexander Herndon: I could probably retype the entire dry thing of 218 pages (w/o biblio) from memory but I’ll spare you.
    My arguments begin with excerpts from the Tao of Physics to link human effort in invention and ingenuity as an extension of the thinking mind’s fundamental metaphysical manifestation of desire … the universal “I wish…”. Examples of this metaphysical link to human cognition manifest themselves in our inventions – satisfying our wishes whether intentionally or serendipitously. The cave man thinks: “I wish I could be warmer.” and desire is linked to the discovery and harnessing of that power in the form of fire that fulfilled the wish and serendipitously fulfilled many other wishes simultaneously.
    Such is the nature of our ingenuity matching our desires and the basis of human magic. This magic has so far created marvelous tools that extend the work of our arms, legs, stamina, sight, sensitivity, et al., but till now few tools could claim to extend the power of our minds. Philosophically we could claim that mathematics, art, music and any tools that allowed us to achieve them were extensions of the mind and we would be correct. They are extensions of the mind like the hand-adze was once the best extension of a hand’s work.
    Computers are tools that are made by tools, made by tools, Philosophically we could claim that mathematics, art, music and any tools that allowed us to achieve them were extensions of the mind and we would be correct. They are extensions of the mind like the hand-adze was once the best extension of a hand’s work.
    Computers are tools that are made by tools, made by tools, etc. But there is one additional component that separates the PC from all our other tools… it can be used to extend imagination and subsequently communicate that imagination to any and all locations for sharing. The cumulative human consciousness in which all humans involuntarily participate, is no longer contained within the barriers of conceptual and thus metaphysical walls. It is now a physical presence into which we all delve whenever we turn on our beloved cyberbuddies.
    And these innocent PCs on our desks and laps are still in their infancy in complexity. The hardware, electrified into life from our likewise unified power grid, radiates a magnetic field (arguably similar to a metaphysical aura). When we type, or hold the mouse, or even stare at a modem while it connects, urging it to hurry up, we blend our own magnetic field with that of the computer’s and this interaction cannot go without some change, albeit subtle, occurring in both.
    I argue that when a human interacts with a PC, the symbiotic change is similar to what happens in our autos. After a driver drives a car for a while, a feel for the car’s special behaviors becomes known… likewise, the auto is changed by the specific driver… break pads wear differently because of breaking patterns, doors latch or unlatch with a special jiggle or bang on the hood.
    In this way, our computers take on their own personalities from us, interacting with the human interface and becoming more than a mere collection of parts. When computers become complex enough to accept and respond instantaneously to our analog world, we may find the bridge between the physical and metaphysical is merely a veil and our modern Frankenstein-monster computer is actually a representative tool of humans in metaphysical worlds we have yet to explore.
    21 hours ago · Like · 1

    Catherine Clarke Boccuto: Bravo!
    21 hours ago via mobile · Like
    I had no idea what a super duper smarty pants you were!
    21 hours ago via mobile · Like

    Martha Fawcett Vincek: Alexander, I do love your interpretation of this phenomenon–our need invites the unprecedented into creation. In the beginning, the caveman knew only that he was cold. He did not know how to create fire, only that fire seemed to chase away the cold. He begins to observe fire more carefully, its attributes and dangers. He notices that sometimes sparks fly when he strikes two different stones together. The act of closer observation changes the mind and brings it into a meditative state where it opens to higher states of reality. In this state, the mind flashes with new ideas and slowly shows the hands how to build a fire. Certainly he learns to put his own twist on the knowledge of fire building but where did the new or raw knowledge come from? I say, probably from a dream. Fast forward a few thousand years to the twenty-first century where cavemen sit on couches and access the world through a remote control. We no longer need to learn to build a fire, invent the wheel, or write a book with a quill pen. Now we can sit at a keyboard, think thoughts, and instantly see our thoughts written on a screen in front of our eyes (I’ve personally noticed that if I concentrate on typing, I type more slowly and with more typos, but if I merely think and keep my hands on the keys, I make fewer mistakes. It’s as if my hands are slowly being squeezed out of the creative process). The internet opened the door to The Libarary of All Creation but social media made The Library a Community. I guess if we wander around in a great place like The Library with our needs leading the way, sooner or later, we are going to run into our missing puzzle pieces. (Some of the ideas I put forward in this post come from my readings of Rudolf Steiner who wrote extensively about open-eye meditations and Rupert Sheldrake and his theories on “morphic resonance,” and “morphogenetic fields,” that he describes as “invisible blueprints underlying form,” which he believes are “analogous to magnetic fields.”
    17 hours ago · Edited · Like · 1

    Alexander Herndon: Catherine Clarke Boccuto, I’m not that smart… in fact, when I was in the third grade they gave us a state-wide IQ test and I scored a 54… lol, I should be peddling pencils on the corner. Martha Fawcet Vincek.. precisely as you said. I’m familiar with Rupert Sheldrake’s work and I have direct personal empirical evidence of the effectiveness of Anthroposophic medicine.
    17 hours ago · Unlike · 2

    Martha Fawcett Vincek: I would love to hear your story.
    17 hours ago · Like · 1

    Alexander Herndon: Just after my “toddler” age, I found it very boring to be put “to sleep” as so many children do. My response was to play a game in my head. First, I imagined myself shrinking, bed and all. As I shrank, I receded back into the corner smaller and smaller, till the spaces between the wooden floor boards were as big as the grand canyon and my bed threatened to tip over into oblivion. Then slowly, I imagined myself and my bed growing larger till I filled the room, till there wasn’t even enough space left for me to take a breath… squeezing every side. I would slowly oscillate between these two states gradually picking up speed till the difference between small and big were the blink of an eye. Later, I read an article about hypnosis and realized I had induced a self-hypnotic trance. What had I hypnotized myself to do, you might ask? I can’t be sure, but I have always been able to enter a deep sleep in any position – standing, sitting, crouched – regardless of noise or temperature or other distractions, nearly instantly. This is an example I used in my thesis to frame the argument for metaphysical invocation of a desire [not to be bored] satisfied through imagination [big and small entertainment] producing a wish-fulfilling result [not to be bored when I have to sleep]. All resulting in my ability to uncannily sleep anytime anywhere in any position.

    Is there in fact a true correlation between the two? For the purpose of the example, it doesn’t matter, merely that the conclusion is a real possibility.
    16 hours ago · Edited · Like · 1

    Alexander Herndon: Steiner, BTW, is very much the dualist. He reflects much of Plato’s teachings, especially reflections on the “divine” world wherein our imaginations are able to perceive perfection that are impossible in the mundane world. I am a firm believer in this aspect of the capacity of the human state to perceive well beyond the “wet-ware” of our corporeal bodies. This also leads me to speculate on the interactive connection between our “wet-ware”, our ability to perceive the impossible, and the relationship they have through the physical interaction of magnetic and gravitational fields of bodies.
    16 hours ago · Edited · Unlike · 2

    Catherine Clarke Boccuto Yes, I was just about to say that!
    16 hours ago via mobile · Unlike · 1

    Martha Fawcett Vincek: Alexander, When I was in my twenties, I was pregnant and living in Fort Collins, Colorado. My husband heard about an obstetrician who was using hypnosis during childbirth. The birth is a story in itself; but afterward, I began to understand that all hypnosis is self-hyposis and hypnosis was actually meditation. These two altered states are different; but to me, at that stage, I recognized only that they were altered states. What I am thinking now is…all altered states are nibbling around the edge of the truth (as in, there are many roads to enlightenment, but only one enlightenment). I’ve have also retained my ability to enter the realm of my imagination as I am going to sleep. I don’t think I could sleep if I dwelt upon the stark realities this is life.
    14 hours ago · Like · 2

    Martha Fawcett Vincek: Steiner thinking on The Will had a great influence on me and I still pay homage to him because of this. As I continue my eternal search, I still believe the Will is a divine virtue within us that we can learn to cultivate. Steiner was hemmed in by his Christian beliefs and after a while I felt as if the answers were not in the past but in the undefined future and so moved on. I have no doubt that when physical bodies come into contact, especially sexual contact, that greater energy is drawn into their combined magnetic field, but how this translate to communication or telepathy over long distances that ends up in our conscious mind, I still don’t understand.
    14 hours ago · Like · 2

    Alexander Herndon: As a philosophical Taoist [reformed Catholic] it is second nature to consider the inter-connectivity of all things… Lao Tzu – “I dreamed I was a butterfly, flitting around in the sky; then I awoke. Now I wonder: Am I a man who dreamt of being a butterfly, or am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man?” and “It has been said that something as small as the flutter of a butterfly’s wing can ultimately cause a typhoon halfway around the world” – Chaos Theory. I agree Steiner was too heavily influenced by Abrahamic religions, but it is nevertheless notable that he was able to translate his metaphysical experiences into physical expressions such as his architecture and influence on early modern dance.
    13 hours ago · Like · 1

    Catherine Clarke Boccuto: You both are just awesome!
    12 hours ago via mobile · Like

    Alexander Herndon: Wisdom, courage, moderation and justice – the Platonic virtues – are brush strokes of the painting we make with our will.
    11 hours ago · Unlike · 2

    Martha Fawcett Vincek: Speaking of Steiner, I had a very strange experience in Hamburg, Germany when I decided to visit one of his centers. I did research and discovered a center was only a few blocks from my hotel, so I decided to walk there. I went to the street but could not find the correct address. I retraced my steps but still could not find the center and turned to go back to my hotel. Just then a huge gust of wind came and pulled my beret off my head. I ran down the walkway after my hat and when I finally caught it, I looked up and I was standing in front of the Rudolph Steiner Center. I crossed the street and went through a wrought iron gate. The building had two doors, one unmarked and the other said, “library.” The library was locked but there was a bell. I rang it and a woman came to the unmarked door. I told her I was interested in Steiner and she invited me to come in and look at some Steiner’s artifacts and a picture of him that looked familiar. One of the things she told me was that Steiner was murdered by Nazis. When I left the place, I was both angry and upset. As I walked back to my hotel I thought…we have murdered every enlightened person who has incarnated among us. The only problem, Steiner was not murdered by Nazis. He died of natural causes. By the time I found out that she had lied to me, I was stuck with the belief that we have murdered every enlightened leader that has come among us. So does the truth matter? Most definitely. But in this case, the effect on me was the same.
    11 hours ago · Like · 1

    Alexander Herndon: A right smart anecdote about perceptive reality. Part of this event is true as I witnessed it, part of it I invented to illustrate the point:
    An old homeless man sits on a curb while foot and auto traffic pass by unheeding. A man in a three-piece bursts out of the building behind the homeless man, exclaiming excitedly, “I won! I won!” holding a lottery ticket high in one hand. He springs carelessly across the street where he is promptly hit by a bus and dies instantly. The crowd gathers as sirens race to the scene, but the ticket lands at the feet of the homeless man. His practical solution to the moment is simple. Say nothing, do nothing, see what happens. Some time after all signs of the fatality and crowd have long past and blended back into the mundane, he finds himself still sitting there with the ticket unclaimed. He stands, picks up the ticket, and walks to the nearest lottery office.
    Nothing has changed at all for the homeless man, he can’t even be sure if the ticket truly is a winner, yet he is filled with happiness and imaginings of all that is suddenly possible. An interesting exercise.
    11 hours ago · Like · 1

    Alexander Herndon: Perhaps the building was imperceptible by you until its architecture influenced the wind currents around it and by stepping in just the right crossroads of juxtaposed energies and possibilities, your hat became a medium through which a natural set of converging moments of seemingly unrelated acts led you to the door.
    11 hours ago · Like

    Alexander Herndon: I’ve also informally conducted some simple experiments to illustrate some of these concepts. When 2400 baud modems were the height of tech, connections to the internet were frustrating in the gentlest sense of the word. I spent several weeks spot checking a hypothesis I had regarding the interaction of hardware and human. While the modem connected (the din of beeps and whines signalling handshakes between computers) I timed the length of time to establish connection. Sometimes I ignored the process and left the room, sometimes I stayed but paid no attention to the modem, sometimes I concentrated on the modem to connect faster, and my control was having my wife connect for me to remove me completely from the act. Concentrating on the connection time proved statistically to connect faster than any of the other methods. Doesn’t prove anything but certainly does not negate the hypothesis. Also, I’ve created a spreadsheet that effectively duplicates the process of throwing coins or sticks for I Ching readings. I based the “throws” on two methods: 1) throw coins or sticks and record their numerical values into the spreadhseet; 2) press the “CALC” key to generate three throws worth of three coins (or sticks). The resulting values produce a hexagram (and associated complimentary hexagrams) with interpreted text derived from lookup tables based on the James Legge translation and associated Confucian footnotes.he point being that the “random” throws generated are not random at all, but rather based on a randomizing binary formula that simulates the tossing of three coins of three. It is the interaction of the human finger and its associated will that mimics the metaphysical connection the human hand has with the physical coins when they are tossed.
    11 hours ago · Like

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