Jeffery Martin (Skeptiko 267) has just released a free version of his fee-based online course, the Finders Course, at http://www.finderscourse.com/fc.one.html His science-based experimental online course has been run four times and the fifth run is ongoing now (FC5). I'm participating in that (Dmitch participated in FC4). Jeffery is currently gearing up to run another iteration of this fee-based course, FC6, to begin in July. His reported results from the first four courses have been nothing short of spectacular in terms of bringing a large percentage of participants into an ongoing mind state he calls ONE (for ongoing non-symbolic experience*). As far as I'm aware, his success rate (over 50%) in that time frame (a few months) is a couple of orders of magnitude beyond anything reliably reported in the modern era; initiations such as the Eleusis Mysteries of ancient Greece may have enjoyed such success but they were reserved for the cultural elite and may have been rather harrowing. It is currently unknown (as far as I've heard) if the free course will have the same success rate as his fee-based courses - research suggests that free courses do not motivate participants as well as pay courses can. Still, this course may well be the best chance for anyone who is not wedded to a particular religion or spiritual framework, or anyone who is so wedded but can maintain an open mind, to achieve PNSE in a few months at essentially no cost other than a significant amount of effort. Based on my experience to date and views expressed by many people in ONE or PNSE, those mind states are unbelievably precious; the commonly expressed view is that these people would not go back to their earlier states for any amount of money. At this point I have not examined the contents of the free course. My experience in FC5 and what I've heard from others is that the changes experienced at various times in unexpected ways can cause it to be a rather rough ride emotionally, sometimes confusing. If I were going to do the free course, I'd consider getting some like-minded friends or a partner involved. I would also consider soliciting emotional support from non-participating friends and family. Those are just my thoughts. I believe this should be approached as a serious undertaking. Examine the potential risks and benefits for yourself. I have no affiliation with Jeffery or his courses other than I'm paying to take FC5. Nothing I say here or elsewhere should be considered advice, only opinion. ------------------------------- *Footnote - Jeffery says the term non-symbolic experience was chosen, not because it is terribly meaningful, but because it did not have any baggage, unlike the traditional terms which tend to vary by spiritual tradition or lack thereof. This allowed him to interview thousands of people claiming these mind states, with a wide variety of backgrounds, without offending sometimes dogmatic beliefs. Jeffery breaks ONE into a spectrum of mind states that include most of the enlightenment or mystical or whatever states that have been reported across all cultures for thousands of years. His various research reports can be found at: http://nonsymbolic.org/ By his definition, if you remain in ONE for a year (data suggest that seven months will do it) it is likely to be a permanent transformation, which he calls PNSE (Persistent Non-Symbolic Experience).