Beverly Gilmour, 100s of NDE and a New Insight About Consciousness |350|

#42
At times this was a frustrating episode to listen to. Perhaps it's that I'm familiar with Alex's style and the type of probing questions we expect on this forum, or maybe something else. Beverley's inability to give a direct answer to a direct question made for a long drawn-out proceedings.

I don't think it was deliberate. Here in the UK we're in the middle of an election campaign and the skills of politicians at avoiding responding to a question are routine. With Beverley that didn't seem to be the case, she seemed to be honestly trying to address the questions, but often seemed to end up somewhere else.

Still, she did come across as sincere and well-intentioned. Certain parts of the things she said struck a chord with me, I do think she has something valuable to say, and hints at some answers to problems humanity is facing.
 
#43
Beverley's inability to give a direct answer to a direct question made for a long drawn-out proceedings.
To be fair, from memory I think Alex asked her to explain some things which I was looking forward to hearing, but he then interrupted her answer at some point and if she intended answering specific questions, she probably forgot and was never reminded about them by Alex. I don't think it was just Beverley's 'fault'.
 
#44
Alex's question at the end of the interview:

Do you think Beverley "encountered Jesus" during an out-of-body NDE experience, and what does it mean to even say that?
I think Beverley's own answers show that we should not get too hung up on assigning of names.

She sees a shadowy figure, dressed like a monk, but does not see his face. She asks the figure if he is "my lord Jesus" and the response is neither to confirm nor to deny. "Why do you ask child, do you not know?".

This seems to echo similar encounters in other NDEs or related experiences. We are the ones who assign names, but the beings themselves usually do not use names. In other contexts, certain spiritual beings encountered explain that they have lived many lives on Earth and gone by many names, none of which are as it were the 'actual' name, it is merely a matter of convenience to assign a label.

In the context of Beverley's experiences it seems as if a child temporarily loses contact with a parent in a busy crowd, When they are reunited, the child doesn't ask the parent to confirm his or her name.
 
#46
That sounds to me like a rhetorical question that means "yes"
I don't read it that way. If 'yes', why not say 'yes'? We are used to rhetoric in our debates, but the consistency of Beverley's experience with others means it is something other than ordinary rhetoric. It does seem that names are unimportant. We should use other approaches to recognising who or what we are dealing with.

I'm personally with questioner on this one
I respect your opinion.

However at the same time I'm wondering (based on some other discussion threads) whether you struggle with material which doesn't support your own faith. None of us would be comfortable to see the ground we stand on being eroded away. Perhaps.
 

Brian_the_bard

Lost Pilgrim
Member
#47
I respect your opinion.

However at the same time I'm wondering (based on some other discussion threads) whether you struggle with material which doesn't support your own faith. None of us would be comfortable to see the ground we stand on being eroded away. Perhaps.
Hey, I want the truth! I promise you, if my faith is proved wrong, I'm off down the pub to get wasted and have a good time before I die! If I was biased, I wouldn't believe in NDEs at all. I think that whatever the truth turns out to be, if it isn't in line with my faith, it's my faith that goes. Having said that, we all have subconscious biases but I do try to challenge mine.

I don't read it that way. If 'yes', why not say 'yes'?
Perhaps an attempt to imitate how one might imagine a fantasy Jesus to speak, such as in the use of the word "child" in this context. It's very early church and not very Jesus. It's also very trite!




i
 
#48
Hm I know what you mean but I am not so sure. Almost every development seems to have its dark application as well as its positive one. Perhaps if we have access to even more understanding it would cause problems we hadn't imagined.
I don't know. I think this lack of understanding as to who we truly are, may be one of the reasons for humanity's suffering. A particular individual may have a fear of loosing what he had gained in this short physical life which will lead to greed, perhaps suffering and even hate. These gains may be riches, loved ones, etc. This fear of loss of these gains may be because of this perceived transient life where there is nothing more afterwards. I mean ... who truly believes we are eternal? Who can actually grasp that concept without a greater understanding? I know I have a hard time with it and I find myself clinging to what I have and even wanting more from this temporal and temporary life before I expire. The question is ... will I truly expire? But to understand without a shadow of a doubt as to who I truly am and that I will never expire, wouldn't that alleviate my fear of loss?

I apologize if this is swaying off topic a little.
 
#49
I don't know. I think this lack of understanding as to who we truly are, may be one of the reasons for humanity's suffering. A particular individual may have a fear of loosing what he had gained in this short physical life which will lead to greed, perhaps suffering and even hate. These gains may be riches, loved ones, etc. This fear of loss of these gains may be because of this perceived transient life where there is nothing more afterwards. I mean ... who truly believes we are eternal? Who can actually grasp that concept without a greater understanding? I know I have a hard time with it and I find myself clinging to what I have and even wanting more from this temporal and temporary life before I expire. The question is ... will I truly expire? But to understand without a shadow of a doubt as to who I truly am and that I will never expire, wouldn't that alleviate my fear of loss?

I apologize if this is swaying off topic a little.
I don't know either. It might work for you but someone different might react completely differently to it.
 
#53
However at the same time I'm wondering...whether you struggle with material which doesn't support your own faith. None of us would be comfortable to see the ground we stand on being eroded away. Perhaps.
Funny reading that comment to Brian, as I've been thinking that one critical subtext to Alex's post-interview question is his support for Jesus mythicism. I surmise he may be wrestling with a similar discomfort: "Wait a minute, could Joe Atwill be wrong?"

Yes, yes he is.
 

Brian_the_bard

Lost Pilgrim
Member
#54
Funny reading that comment to Brian, as I've been thinking that one critical subtext to Alex's post-interview question is his support for Jesus mythicism. I surmise he may be wrestling with a similar discomfort: "Wait a minute, could Joe Atwill be wrong?"

Yes, yes he is.
Problem is, anybody could be wrong. Why should I believe one source over another, especially when Atwill's claims have been refuted many times over. I actually do try to look at all sides but it is so common here in skeptiko for people to just hold to their preferred views. My boundaries have changed a lot since I joined and the fact that there is little if any reliable, straightforward historical evidence for a historical Jesus is one thing I have had to accept as a result of that thread. In the case of this thread, should I not be joyous that somebody has met Jesus??? Not if I don't trust the rhetoric!

BTW there is another thread where I seem to be the only poster questioning demonic posession cases. Crazy for a Christian don't you think? Not if I am simply after truth!
 
#55
Many NDE reports do describe exactly that - except that rather than causing annoyance, all of their questions are answered!

The catch is that when returning to this physical reality afterwards, the answers are not retained. One possibility is that the information is deliberately blocked, so that the returning traveller has only the small fragments of information needed in order to continue their life. For example if we had a clear foreknowledge of our future life here on Earth, it would interfere with our ability to exercise our free-will, and thus would defeat the purpose of being here. Another possibility is that such understanding and knowledge requires a certain mental state which may not be consistent with our current state of physical existence. There are other possibilities I can think of, but it would drift into more and more idle speculation.
That certainly seems to connect with how my mother described the several NDEs she experienced (this was back in the 1980s; the NDEs themselves occurred in the 1960s-70s, and occurred during illness). In one of them she described being shown everything, including the future, and how it was kind of like a chess game board, 'where evil seems to be winning but in fact it's actually losing, it will all be reversed', but then whatever knowledge she was shown of her specific future was somehow blocked or taken away again when she returned to her body. Either as a precaution against changing the future or because living through events was more important for personal development; she felt that the information was erased for her benefit.

I'm also very interested by how most NDE experiencers (including Bev Gilmour) describe communication as being by thought, not spoken words, as that's how my mum described it too. 'Like little thought bubbles' was what she actually said.

She also described meeting Jesus - at least once in a kind of visionary experience while awake in a church, rather than in an NDE. One of the reasons why I'm interested in other experiences to compare hers with. In this particular one she saw Jesus walk up the aisle of the church and then rather sadly walk out again because nobody there noticed him. (This was a fundamentalist sect that was going through a bad time).

In this particular vision she saw Jesus 'with a forked beard, in two halves, which scared me, and he felt my fear so he sort of covered it up with some balls of floating light which were around his face, to make it less scary'. The light she felt had features like a liquid; it sort of 'flowed' around his body like a fountain.

The split beard appears in some early icons, I think; at this time (and not sure if this was the 70s) I think she wasn't familiar with them, but when she told me the story in the 1980s she had discovered paintings with that feature and felt that validated her vision.

Regards, Nate
 
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#56
I kind of like what you say in this post, but isn't it kind of a rabbit hole as well? Real Jesus here, fake Jesus there......is it important that I figure it out?

I mean, in this sense its just like everything else paranormal out there - kind of straightforward at first glance but the deeper you dig the murkier and weirder it gets.
Sadly yes. Religion and the paranormal are especially like this, but also politics, and sex, and academia, and commerce... almost everything human seems to be complicated and has bad woven in with the good.

But in my experience religion is one of the most conflicted areas of the human thought-landscape. It's often more useful to trust your personal instincts rather than names or symbols or institutional leaders. But even our personal instincts can themselves be complicated depending on our personal history.

I do think that many church leaders are people who are good at *institutional politics* but not necessarily at detecting spiritual truth from spiritual error. Not because they're bad people but just because institutional power-structures generally reward people who are good at navigating those structures, and spiritual truth usually doesn't come with a lot of power or money attached.

But then a lot of people who claim they've had a visionary experience may well have had an experience but it might not be what they think it means, so... yeah, it's all messy.

Regards, Nate
 
#57
In this particular vision she saw Jesus 'with a forked beard, in two halves, which scared me, and he felt my fear so he sort of covered it up with some balls of floating light which were around his face, to make it less scary'...
Interesting. The forked beard is also a feature of the image on the Shroud of Turin, and proponents for its authenticity argue that the shroud influenced the development of Byzantine iconography.
 
#58
Problem is, anybody could be wrong...but it is so common here in skeptiko for people to just hold to their preferred views.
Including the view that if one identifies with the Christian tradition then one must have placed one's head in the sand or is resistant to critical inquiry. Glad that you can help (hopefully) dispel such notions.

My boundaries have changed a lot since I joined and the fact that there is little if any reliable, straightforward historical evidence for a historical Jesus is one thing I have had to accept as a result of that thread.
Sounds like the perfect moment to make the turn to what Paul Ricoeur called the "second naivete."

In the case of this thread, should I not be joyous that somebody has met Jesus??? Not if I don't trust the rhetoric!
Insofar as that experience results in greater selflessness and peace, then let us be joyous.
 
#59
I think that is the problem in a nutshell. I mean when someone tells you that you should reform, or continue as you are, that can be interpreted as freedom, but it can also be interpreted as some sort of control.

This is not just an obscure technical point. The man who killed all those kids in Manchester the other day, was reported to be very religious. I'll bet that man was pointed to other 'great martyrs', and he probably felt love for them. Maybe there was even some sort of spirit guide helping him to 'be strong' and 'do what he had to do'.

David
Thank you for making this point David. This reminds me of something I found out shortly after the Brussels bombings (which inevitably affected me considerably since I live in that city, and one of the suicide bombers blew himself up in an underground station where I would go practically everyday -- I no longer do, for many reasons). I wanted to post these links on this Forum but then I never got round to it in the end. I'll do so now as this is relevant to this discussion

http://boredjihadi.tumblr.com/post/142889314077/three-dreams-of-a-brussels-bomber
"As regular readers of this blog will know, jihadis discuss their dreams all the time"

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/brussels-isis-suicide-bomber-vision-7745742
"I then saw my soul and those of the three soldiers. All of a sudden, the soldiers’ souls burned and vanished and, suddenly, the banner of Islam – represented in the dream by the flag of the Islamic State – came out of the earth and was shining brightly. My soul then became full of light.”
He added that his dream finished with a voice telling him that he had achieved 'deliverance' and he awoke with his heart racing."

I think that this is very interesting not only from the moral point of view but also if we simply objectively wish to understand who is "communicating" from beyond the Veil (supposing these contacts/visions/messages are real and not imagined, of course). Who exactly is giving these people such dreams/visions? If all is "love and light", whence all this? Does it all come from "Jesus" anyway, because horrifically (as this would mean that "the end justifies the means" both for Machiavelli and 'God' -- for those who believe in him) these tragedies HAVE to happen for us to 'learn'? In that case we should be grateful that suicide bombers get thus 'spiritually encouraged' to blow themselves up and kill dozens of innocents, so that we all get amazing opportunities to "learn"! How can we be sure that this reality is some kind of bizarre but ultimately benevolent (??) "splatter school" as many would like to believe, and not a place whose events (and even people) can be manipulated both by good and evil entities pursuing completely different agendas, instead?
 
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#60
Thank you for making this point David. This reminds me of something I found out shortly after the Brussels bombings (which inevitably affected me considerably since I live in that city, and one of the suicide bombers blew himself off in an underground station that I would be in practically everyday -- I no longer do, for many reasons). I wanted to post these links on this Forum but then I never got round to it in the end. I'll do so now as this is relevant to this discussion

http://boredjihadi.tumblr.com/post/142889314077/three-dreams-of-a-brussels-bomber
"As regular readers of this blog will know, jihadis discuss their dreams all the time"

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/brussels-isis-suicide-bomber-vision-7745742
"I then saw my soul and those of the three soldiers. All of a sudden, the soldiers’ souls burned and vanished and, suddenly, the banner of Islam – represented in the dream by the flag of the Islamic State – came out of the earth and was shining brightly. My soul then became full of light.”
He added that his dream finished with a voice telling him that he had achieved 'deliverance' and he awoke with his heart racing."

I think that this is very interesting not only from the moral point of view but also if we simply objectively wish to understand who is "communicating" from beyond the Veil (supposing these contacts/visions/messages are real and not imagined, of course). Who exactly is giving these people such dreams/visions? If all is "love and light", whence all this? Does it all come from "Jesus" anyway, because horrifically (as this would mean that "the end justifies the means" both for Machiavelli and 'God' -- for those who believe in him) these tragedies HAVE to happen for us to 'learn'? In that case we should be grateful that suicide bombers get thus 'spiritually encouraged' to blow themselves up and kill dozens of innocents, so that we all get amazing opportunities to "learn"! How can we be sure that this reality is some kind of bizarre but ultimately benevolent (??) "splatter school" as many would like to believe, and not a place whose events (and even people) can be manipulated both by good and evil entities pursuing completely different agendas, instead?
My feeling is that wherever the 'miscommunication' takes place, it most certainly does happen in many instances. Many of the people on Skeptiko have been burned off by religion to a greater or less degree, and even some of the sceptics are clearly here partly because of their own experiences, and their contemplation of events like that.

I wasn't aware that jihadis discuss their dreams a lot. Of course, when people talk about their dreams, the term can be ambiguous. Are they definitely talking about a real dream - not a day dream? I must say I am a bit wary about accessing your first link in case it is ISIS propaganda. I don't want to waste the security forces' time, nor do I want them to waste mine!

David
 
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