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The Bardo vs In Between States as in Michael Newtons and Brian Weiss's Books.

ossian

Member
Hello I have a question to ask here.
I've been interested in reincarnation ever since I had a vision that I will post in the past-lives memories thread.
Right now however I have a question regarding the in between state before rebirth.
Having been a practicing Buddhist for decades, I'm very aware of the Tibetan teachings on rebirth.
The Bardo, as it's called, appears to be a rather unhappy state characterized by confusion and fear.
So much so that it's a teaching that people will often take whatever rebirth that offers itself, rather than being
patient and waiting to find a good birth.
On the other hand, I've read M. Newton and B. Weiss. The 'In Between State' that they describe is much more
benign. With little fear and confusion. My question has become a bit more important lately as I"ve lost someone
very close to me and have no idea, really, what kind of situation they now find themselves. in.
I've heard both the Bardo and the states explored via hypnotism by Newton and Weiss dismissed as nonsense
by some. Other times I've heard buddhists dismiss N&W's accounts as well.
My feeling is that N&W's accounts can be repeated by others doing regressions.
Still, I worry. What kind of situation do people find themselves in after death.
Any input would be appreciated.

Thankyou
Ossian
 
I think the afterlife is what it is and no one knows for sure what it is like. We guess and we believe. Personally, I find it hard to believe the "in-between" state is a fearful place. Why would it be like that? (Sorry, I remember nothing about what I read long ago about Bardo.) Yet I also don't buy Michael Newton's beliefs, and think leading questions are asked during hypnotism by him and his practitioners. I've read all of Brian Weiss' books, liking them all, except for the last one he co-wrote with his daughter. He had become too New-Agey, in my opinion.

Sorry you have lost someone recently, ossian. What do you think happens after death? What do you want to believe? Why do you want to believe what you believe? Is it possibly time to put aside some of your Buddhist beliefs?

Sunday
 
I'm not sure what the in between would be like. On one hand I don't see any reason for cruelty, fear and confusion. What would be the benefit? On the other, having been raised a christian with its ideas of hell and purgatory as well as heaven. Encountering the buddhist bardo state with its associated states of fear and confusion did not come as a shock.
I may have been practicing for a long time, but I do question Buddhism, always have. I see no need to be a true believer.
What do I want to believe? I want to believe that there's less needless suffering. But then I just don't know. Just curious what others here who have experience in this sort of thing might have to say.
 
Hi Ossian,

Welcome to the board, and please accept my condolences in terms of your loss. I am a septuagenarian and have not only seen many loved ones pass, but may myself be taking that journey in the not too distant future. So, like you I also have a great deal of curiosity in this matter. Over my lifetime I have studied various ideas about the afterlife and the various realms and "planes" of existence. Likewise, at various times I have found myself swayed in one direction or another. I had some brief OOBEs in my youth, which let me know that there is "something" beyond the body, but I was no great traveler in that realm like Robert Monroe and some others have claimed to be.

At this point in time, I lean towards NDEs as the most reliable source of information. They are also, IMO, the most encouraging. And, though there are some negative experiences--they tend to be overwhelmingly positive.

Cordially,
S&S
 
@ossian
Sorry for your loss and your pain.

I honestly believe that you shouldn't worry about the "after death" of your loved one, nor of yours when your time will come.

My belief is rooted only in my own understanding of reality, not affiliated with any religion or system of beliefs, although I find bits and pieces in most of them, just differently interpreted. My belief is based on my own self-regressions to "in between lives", and on my spiritual development guided by my inner source of knowledge and guidance. From everything I read, by far the closest to my views I found to be Jane Roberts' "Seth"; but my views aren't the result of studying and adopting Seth's teachings.

Probably the most detrimental emotion we might have while alive is fear. It doesn't only spoil our experience here, but it actually brings into our lives more and more situations that trigger fear. If we lived in fear, after death we'll have to go through a recovery period until we wake up to the understanding that there is no reason to fear anything. Any strong religious beliefs, or disbeliefs will have to be cured in similar ways. There is assistance available for such cases.

As you went through Christian, Buddhist, New Age systems of beliefs, I think that you will / should eventually learn to work with your own inner source of guidance through your subconscious, intentionally leaving aside all your beliefs, expectations, rationalizations, common sense, critical thinking, science, etc..

Your post reminds of an experience I had the other night, waking up from a dream in which I was holding in my arms my father weak and dying, fearing that he'll die; an awful feeling. I woke up and realized that it was a dream, and that my father passed on many years ago. I felt relief !? This bothered me: having the certitude of the loss was a relief from the fear of that loss. I pondered and interpreted it, with my inner guidance, with a strong need to understand.
 
ossian, like S&S, my beliefs have not stayed rigid over the years, but have swayed. Back in the early 2000s, when I was active in this group, I firmly believed in reincarnation, after slowly embracing it in the 1980s. I say slowly because, like you, I was raised a Christian. I personally saw reincarnation as a betrayal of my religious beliefs. Edgar Cayce books made me comfortable enough with the idea of past lives to stop feeling "guilty" about my new beliefs. He wrote and lived like a Christian minister! What he said about reincarnation made sense, too, much more sense than the ideas of Heaven and Hell for all of eternity.

Brian Weiss started off sounding like a rabbi in his writings back in 1988, which I greatly liked. (As I posted earlier, his last book, written with his daughter, was too New Agey for me, however.) I read hundreds of other books, too, on reincarnation, OBEs, NDEs, ADC, mediums, etc. Carol Bowman's first book was an excellent overview of reincarnation, plus had a great bibliography. The NDE ones were hot sellers during my time of reading them, but I sadly soon discovered some were obviously frauds, out to make big bucks. (The worst was yet to come, though, when respectable researchers like Raymond Moody jumped on the Eben Alexander cash cow and gravy train in 2012.) Michael Newton's two books blew me away! I was his biggest fans for years. But one day I started seeing big cracks in his beliefs, and saw how intensely he expected everyone to accept all he said and believed. When I saw a video on him where he was adamantly stating that no one would see Jesus when they died, even though many who have had NDEs say they did, that was the end of my beliefs in his in-between world theories. How does he know no one will see Jesus? He does not and doesn't seem to realize he does not.

I'm not so firm in my own beliefs today about the afterlife, but that's not a bad thing. Moreover, I still believe in reincarnation and that's definitely not a bad thing. It's important to realize spiritual beliefs can change, and, for many of us, it's a lifetime journey discovering what we believe to be true. baro-san put it nicely in an above post: "As you went through Christian, Buddhist, New Age systems of beliefs, I think that you will / should eventually learn to work with your own inner source of guidance through your subconscious, intentionally leaving aside all your beliefs, expectations, rationalizations, common sense, critical thinking, science, etc."

Back to you original question, though . . . I can see where those who have done great harm to others may end up in a bad and frightening emotional state and place after they die. Why should they not? For the average soul, however, I couldn't see the point or meaning of that.
 
Hi Ossian,
A few words from someone without a religion, although I call myself religious. In my own language the word religious can be translated by two different words:1. Belonging to one of the many religions, 2. religious as in spiritual (without New Age connotations). Maybe too difficult for now to explain, but to give a hint where my opinions come from).

I did study a lot of religious beliefs in my life, without the intention to commit myself. I just wanted to understand my fellow humans. Referring to Jesus, I think he was ok. His teachings are ok and I am sure he'll burst out laughing if I ever would ask him if it were essential to worship him for salvation.

During my personal search, I just came to the conclusion that traditional religions have always been systems to control the living by the living. Buddhism has a lot of flaws as well. Just study the place and role of female practitioners during history. And today. As a woman myself, I don't consider myself an inferior being/soul. (Yes, I went into old books and texts, not into the fashionable marketing polished for Westeners stuff)

For this moment, I devote a lot of time listening to NDE stories, mostly on YouTube and from people around me in real life. Sometimes, it is obvious that channels have a kind of agenda to fortify their existing religion. But when you listen to non biased accounts, there are common themes between the experiences. None of the stories are identical, so many variations. Often people say that shortly after dying, you'll find a place that meets your expectations (good or not so good), until you are ready to move on. The near death experiencers almost never go beyond that temporary state and return to their life. Usually they say there is no heaven or hell, except when your mind is convinced to enter such place.

A lot of people meet Jesus, including non-christians, but not everybody. It's all about expectations.

When I was a child (don't remember at what age but I was still living with my parents) I had dreams at night where someone came to pick me up to go to places. Now, I would call it a spiritual guide, by then I just called them a 'someone'. One night he took me to a green landscape, like a huge park without boundaries. There was people enjoying themselves. Like playing, picknicking, sitting, talking, gathering, and so forth. After a while it dawned to me that something was 'wrong'. I said to my companion: Wait a minute, this is the place where dead people live. My companion smiled, nodded and said in a soft voice that it had been special that I had been allowed to come so far to that place.

I've seen ugly places as well but not like a punishment. I've seen raging, angry people and there was a kind of veil around them, like a cage without bars or iron. Just by intuition it was like a protection to others that they were kept together. (Although I was warned in that dream nor to go too close to that curtain like veil, for not to be touched by them). No fire, no hell, just some isolation until their fury and anger would die out as well.

Ofcourse, just dreams of a child, no proof for anything at all. Today, I imagine myself endless possible places and realms to go to after death.

As an adult, I've had one dream of the timing between making plans for Life and actually jumping into it. That was a neutral place. I saw a friend making art with colored glass/light and my own husband trying to avoid going to Earth. He had installed himself in a HUGE library and preferred to stay there to gain knowledge instead of going back.

Casual dreams fade away within minutes after waking up but that kind of dreams stay in my memory for decades. Probably not 'dreams' at all.
 
ossian, like S&S, my beliefs have not stayed rigid over the years, but have swayed. Back in the early 2000s, when I was active in this group, I firmly believed in reincarnation, after slowly embracing it in the 1980s. I say slowly because, like you, I was raised a Christian. I personally saw reincarnation as a betrayal of my religious beliefs. Edgar Cayce books made me comfortable enough with the idea of past lives to stop feeling "guilty" about my new beliefs. He wrote and lived like a Christian minister! What he said about reincarnation made sense, too, much more sense than the ideas of Heaven and Hell for all of eternity.

Brian Weiss started off sounding like a rabbi in his writings back in 1988, which I greatly liked. (As I posted earlier, his last book, written with his daughter, was too New Agey for me, however.) I read hundreds of other books, too, on reincarnation, OBEs, NDEs, ADC, mediums, etc. Carol Bowman's first book was an excellent overview of reincarnation, plus had a great bibliography. The NDE ones were hot sellers during my time of reading them, but I sadly soon discovered some were obviously frauds, out to make big bucks. (The worst was yet to come, though, when respectable researchers like Raymond Moody jumped on the Eben Alexander cash cow and gravy train in 2012.) Michael Newton's two books blew me away! I was his biggest fans for years. But one day I started seeing big cracks in his beliefs, and saw how intensely he expected everyone to accept all he said and believed. When I saw a video on him where he was adamantly stating that no one would see Jesus when they died, even though many who have had NDEs say they did, that was the end of my beliefs in his in-between world theories. How does he know no one will see Jesus? He does not and doesn't seem to realize he does not.

I'm not so firm in my own beliefs today about the afterlife, but that's not a bad thing. Moreover, I still believe in reincarnation and that's definitely not a bad thing. It's important to realize spiritual beliefs can change, and, for many of us, it's a lifetime journey discovering what we believe to be true. baro-san put it nicely in an above post: "As you went through Christian, Buddhist, New Age systems of beliefs, I think that you will / should eventually learn to work with your own inner source of guidance through your subconscious, intentionally leaving aside all your beliefs, expectations, rationalizations, common sense, critical thinking, science, etc."

Back to you original question, though . . . I can see where those who have done great harm to others may end up in a bad and frightening emotional state and place after they die. Why should they not? For the average soul, however, I couldn't see the point or meaning of that.
Hi Sunday,

You and I have traveled similar paths and read many of the same books. I swam in the seas of Eastern Mysticism and the like through adolescence and early adulthood, but came back to Christ in my mid-20s and never left. However, I did become more open to other possibilities in terms of Eschatology by my 60s. Some things in my own life and soul made me believe that reincarnation might happen. And, as someone who has studied both Christianity and Reincarnation, I came to believe they could be reconciled. Indeed, just going by the ancient ecumenical creeds, I concluded that this would not be difficult. Unfortunately, the Bible witness is ambiguous at best. However, I still believed that I could make what would (in law) be called a "colorable" case. So, I began writing a book, and may finish it at some point. But just being able to "make a case" for reincarnation from a Christian standpoint is not the same as having a fool-proof case, so I came to the point where I asked myself whether this was just my own doggedness and pride. If the Almighty had wanted to make it clear it would have been made clear, and I had no special instructions from "on high" to undertake this task.

So now I am at an impasse. Perhaps I will become convinced one way or the other in due course, and perhaps not. However, I think not. The Abrahamic religions historically carry a sense of urgency in terms of salvation (with Mystic Judaism being perhaps an exception). I can understand the reasons for this, and also understand why--in view of this--humans may be better living with a sense (or at least a concern) that this is their only life and they need to make it count in terms of their actions and relationship to God and their fellow human beings.

Cordially,
S&S

PS--I'd love to know why you go by "SundayAtDuskReturns"?
 
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Hi Ossian,
A few words from someone without a religion, although I call myself religious. In my own language the word religious can be translated by two different words:1. Belonging to one of the many religions, 2. religious as in spiritual (without New Age connotations). Maybe too difficult for now to explain, but to give a hint where my opinions come from).

I did study a lot of religious beliefs in my life, without the intention to commit myself. I just wanted to understand my fellow humans. Referring to Jesus, I think he was ok. His teachings are ok and I am sure he'll burst out laughing if I ever would ask him if it were essential to worship him for salvation.

During my personal search, I just came to the conclusion that traditional religions have always been systems to control the living by the living. Buddhism has a lot of flaws as well. Just study the place and role of female practitioners during history. And today. As a woman myself, I don't consider myself an inferior being/soul. (Yes, I went into old books and texts, not into the fashionable marketing polished for Westeners stuff)

For this moment, I devote a lot of time listening to NDE stories, mostly on YouTube and from people around me in real life. Sometimes, it is obvious that channels have a kind of agenda to fortify their existing religion. But when you listen to non biased accounts, there are common themes between the experiences. None of the stories are identical, so many variations. Often people say that shortly after dying, you'll find a place that meets your expectations (good or not so good), until you are ready to move on. The near death experiencers almost never go beyond that temporary state and return to their life. Usually they say there is no heaven or hell, except when your mind is convinced to enter such place.

A lot of people meet Jesus, including non-christians, but not everybody. It's all about expectations.

When I was a child (don't remember at what age but I was still living with my parents) I had dreams at night where someone came to pick me up to go to places. Now, I would call it a spiritual guide, by then I just called them a 'someone'. One night he took me to a green landscape, like a huge park without boundaries. There was people enjoying themselves. Like playing, picknicking, sitting, talking, gathering, and so forth. After a while it dawned to me that something was 'wrong'. I said to my companion: Wait a minute, this is the place where dead people live. My companion smiled, nodded and said in a soft voice that it had been special that I had been allowed to come so far to that place.

I've seen ugly places as well but not like a punishment. I've seen raging, angry people and there was a kind of veil around them, like a cage without bars or iron. Just by intuition it was like a protection to others that they were kept together. (Although I was warned in that dream nor to go too close to that curtain like veil, for not to be touched by them). No fire, no hell, just some isolation until their fury and anger would die out as well.

Ofcourse, just dreams of a child, no proof for anything at all. Today, I imagine myself endless possible places and realms to go to after death.

As an adult, I've had one dream of the timing between making plans for Life and actually jumping into it. That was a neutral place. I saw a friend making art with colored glass/light and my own husband trying to avoid going to Earth. He had installed himself in a HUGE library and preferred to stay there to gain knowledge instead of going back.

Casual dreams fade away within minutes after waking up but that kind of dreams stay in my memory for decades. Probably not 'dreams' at all.
Ossian, wonderful post! I wish my dreams were only half as interesting as yours! I could see myself like your husband, too--no, I'm not going back right now . . . I will just stay in the library and read . . . . :)
 
Hi Sunday,

You and I have traveled similar paths and read many of the same books. I swam in the seas of Eastern Mysticism and the like through adolescence and early adulthood, but came back to Christ in my mid-20s and never left. However, I did become more open to other possibilities in terms of Eschatology by my 60s. Some things in my own life and soul made me believe that reincarnation might happen. And, as someone who has studied both Christianity and Reincarnation, I came to believe they could be reconciled. Indeed, just going by the ancient ecumenical creeds, I concluded that this would not be difficult. Unfortunately, the Bible witness is ambiguous at best. However, I still believed that I could make what would (in law) be called a "colorable" case. So, I began writing a book, and may finish it at some point. But just being able to "make a case" for reincarnation from a Christian standpoint is not the same as having a fool-proof case, so I came to the point where I asked myself whether this was just my own doggedness and pride. If the Almighty had wanted to make it clear it would have been made clear, and I had no special instructions from "on high" to undertake this task.

So now I am at an impasse. Perhaps I will become convinced one way or the other in due course, and perhaps not. However, I think not. The Abrahamic religions historically carry a sense of urgency in terms of salvation (with Mystic Judaism being perhaps an exception). I can understand the reasons for this, and also understand why--in view of this--humans may be better living with a sense (or at least a concern) that this is their only life and they need to make it count in terms of their actions and relationship to God and their fellow human beings.

Cordially,
S&S

PS--I'd love to know why you go by "SundayAtDuskReturns"?
S&S,

After getting over my initial fears that believing in reincarnation was "sacrilegious", I've never gone back to fearing that. I also never left Christianity, but combined it with my new "attachments". Today, if asked about my beliefs, I reply I am a Judeo-Christian who believes in reincarnation. There was no way for me going back to believing we only had one life on earth, because I had reached the point in my early 20s where I no longer believed in God if that was true. It was reading about the Holocaust. If ending up in a concentration camp, especially as a child, and dying horribly there was the one lifetime someone had, there was NO GOD. Moreover, my intense feelings about the Holocaust left me with no question that I must have lived in Europe during WWII in a previous lifetime. It explained so many of my childhood fears.

Should everyone believe in reincarnation? Like you, I don't think so. Some individuals are better off thinking there is only one lifetime. Yet some are not. I obviously am one of those who had to believe or I could not go forward in this lifetime. While believing in one lifetime certainly makes some more morally responsible, believing in multiple lifetimes makes others more responsible. There is no it's all over after death feeling. There's no thinking you will never meet up again with problem relatives or others you would prefer to never see again. You might as well deal with things in this lifetime than deal with them in a future one. I often think many, many of those who commit suicide would never have done so if they believed in reincarnation. In addition, the belief in past lives has helped many individuals get over the fear of death.

Unlike in my younger days, I don't try to convince others to read about reincarnation, unless they are looking for spiritual type reading. Moreover, I have never had the need of "proof" of reincarnation, scientific or otherwise. Those who argue against it or make fun of it don't bother me at all. We all need to reach our own conclusions about life after death, and no one knows for sure what does happen. Not knowing adds mystery to life, and provides motivation to read about and think about deeper topics than everyday life stuff. Congratulations on starting your book! That's more than many who wish to write a book have done. The only way I could write a metaphysical book is if something spiritually profound happened to me, which I don't expect in this lifetime. :)

Sunday

P.S. Sunday at dusk is often a time I reflect on life in general, even when I was a child. I think it's like that for many individuals. Maybe it has to do with going back to school or work the next day, and seeing Sunday as a spiritual day that's ending. Sometimes at dusk, too, the sky goes blue and so does everything around it. Blue is a very spiritual color to me. The "returns" is there because I was very active in this forum back in the early 2000s, before it changed to accomodate all the new members who arrived after Carol's second book was published. It was a much "cozier" forum in the early days.
 
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