It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limits of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive.
– C. W. Leadbeater
We are highly (highly) resistant to believing in things we have not directly experienced.
We all know what a unicorn is. But (I think) very few people believe they are real … (me too).
But, did you know – that, even as late as 1900, very few people believed that gorillas were real (despite the fact that they knew about them … they knew what they were) People did not believe in gorillas TILL THEY WERE CAPTURED AND PRESENTED, IN PERSON (as it were).
We tend to make direct experience into a requirement (for belief).
But, I think there’s more to it than that … (that is – more to why our resistance to belief is so strong)
Maybe watch this video, wherein a medical doctor (and skeptic, Justin Coleman) fails to be convinced that actual healing is taking place … EVEN THOUGH he is a direct witness to the ‘healings’. And I think it’s because he is fond of his belief structure (which [he believes] he himself created) … and is unable to make sense of what he sees – IN TERMS OF that STRUCTURE. And so … he REMAINS A SKEPTIC.
I think, too – that a good portion of our resistance to belief comes from the fact that it seems to us that our “sight” goes out from our eyes … and strikes (and apprehends) our environment … out there, where the things are. This (all day, every day) experience … leaves us (STUCK with) the impression … that we “SEE THE WORLD” … that we are in direct contact with reality ! (which we are NOT)
Most of us (actually DO) realize – that the direction of perception is INward. … But, since we EXPERIENCE it as outward … we operate under the illusion that … we are in DIRECT CONTACT with reality. (I have discussed this [powerful and persistent] illusion in previous essays)
Anyway, I quite suspect – that this same illusion is partly responsible for the fact that we have such (great) resistance … to believing in anything which we have not (personally and) directly experienced.
But in any case … it’s still a mistake. (a malfunction)
There may be quite a number of things that I believe in (believe to be real) … which you may not.
But, let’s just consider a couple : angels … and crop circles.
The MAIN reason I believe in angels – is because I am able to respect the (personal, reported) direct experience OF OTHERS.
I do not own all the experience in the world. Should we not respect the experience of others? (and make use of it?)
7. The Talk About Angels
167:7.1 (1840.6) As they journeyed up the hills from Jericho to Bethany, Nathaniel walked most of the way by the side of Jesus, and their discussion of children in relation to the kingdom of heaven led indirectly to the consideration of the ministry of angels. Nathaniel finally asked the Master this question: “Seeing that the high priest is a Sadducee, and since the Sadducees do not believe in angels, what shall we teach the people regarding the heavenly ministers?” Then, among other things, Jesus said:
167:7.2 (1841.1) “The angelic hosts are a separate order of created beings; they are entirely different from the material order of mortal creatures, and they function as a distinct group of universe intelligences. Angels are not of that group of creatures called ‘the Sons of God’ in the Scriptures; neither are they the glorified spirits of mortal men who have gone on to progress through the mansions on high. Angels are a direct creation, and they do not reproduce themselves. The angelic hosts have only a spiritual kinship with the human race. As man progresses in the journey to the Father in Paradise, he does traverse a state of being at one time analogous to the state of the angels, but mortal man never becomes an angel.
167:7.3 (1841.2) “The angels never die, as man does. The angels are immortal unless, perchance, they become involved in sin as did some of them with the deceptions of Lucifer. The angels are the spirit servants in heaven, and they are neither all-wise nor all-powerful. But all of the loyal angels are truly pure and holy.
167:7.4 (1841.3) “And do you not remember that I said to you once before that, if you had your spiritual eyes anointed, you would then see the heavens opened and behold the angels of God ascending and descending? It is by the ministry of the angels that one world may be kept in touch with other worlds, for have I not repeatedly told you that I have other sheep not of this fold? And these angels are not the spies of the spirit world who watch upon you and then go forth to tell the Father the thoughts of your heart and to report on the deeds of the flesh. The Father has no need of such service inasmuch as his own spirit lives within you. But these angelic spirits do function to keep one part of the heavenly creation informed concerning the doings of other and remote parts of the universe. And many of the angels, while functioning in the government of the Father and the universes of the Sons, are assigned to the service of the human races. When I taught you that many of these seraphim are ministering spirits, I spoke not in figurative language nor in poetic strains. And all this is true, regardless of your difficulty in comprehending such matters.
167:7.5 (1841.4) “Many of these angels are engaged in the work of saving men, for have I not told you of the seraphic joy when one soul elects to forsake sin and begin the search for God? I did even tell you of the joy in the presence of the angels of heaven over one sinner who repents, thereby indicating the existence of other and higher orders of celestial beings who are likewise concerned in the spiritual welfare and with the divine progress of mortal man.
167:7.6 (1841.5) “Also are these angels very much concerned with the means whereby man’s spirit is released from the tabernacles of the flesh and his soul escorted to the mansions in heaven. Angels are the sure and heavenly guides of the soul of man during that uncharted and indefinite period of time which intervenes between the death of the flesh and the new life in the spirit abodes.”
167:7.7 (1841.6) And he would have spoken further with Nathaniel regarding the ministry of angels, but he was interrupted by the approach of Martha, who had been informed that the Master was drawing near to Bethany by friends who had observed him ascending the hills to the east. And she now hastened to greet him.
The reason, by the way, that Jesus told Nathaniel (in the 1st paragraph of p. 1841 of the Urantia Book) that humans do not become angels when we die … is because – that was a common belief in those days (just as it still is today).
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Let us consider the phenomenon of Crop Circles.
Though I have never (personally) seen a crop circle … even so, I feel they are real … and (often) exquisitely beautiful. Nor do I doubt – that they are created for us (humans) as a form of communication … from some (higher, and benevolent) race (or races) of beings. I believe they care about us … and hope for our survival. I’m sure they are aware of the considerable hazards (of self-destruction) which confront us; and I think they are pulling for us.
And … it has occurred to me – that (maybe) – simply gazing at these wonderful designs (even if we apparently do not ‘understand’ what they mean) … still it may be helping us in some way. Once we’ve seen such patterns … we’re not quite the same as we were. Mmm?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XOgn9JZm6qI (balls of light forming crop circles)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BndVb1ucKOA (UFO’s making crop circles)
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I will (yet again) quote William Irwin Thompson :
We are like flies crawling across the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel: we cannot see what angels and gods lie underneath the threshold of our perceptions. We do not live in reality; we live in our paradigms, our habituated perceptions, our illusions; the illusions we share through culture we call reality; but the true historical reality of our condition is invisible to us.
The world we live in … that is, the world that we imagine that we live in … is very much smaller (and duller) than the one we actually live in.
We believe (in) too little.
film – Heaven Is For Real (2014 Greg Kinnear et al.)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSqCe8nYQ4A (EBENs etc. – Linda Moulton Howe )