Monday, 1 June 2009

Personal Experience...

When conducting fieldwork for my dissertation I had deliberately made the decision to engage fully with the object of my investigation (full participant observation, as proposed by Edith Turner with regard to ritual). This decision was made in order to explore some of the core experiential sensations associated with the mediumship experience, both from the perspective of the sitter and the medium. These experiences form a fundamental infrastructure around which notions and beliefs about the nature of the experience, and its implications, are formed.

The following are the notes I wrote up following two particularly interesting experiences:

"Because Jon was unable to attend the séance this evening (10/3/09) it was decided that the time would best be spent with the intention of development. This involved sitting in red light conditions and meditating. Michelle, who has had previous mediumistic experience, was placed in the cabinet, but the intention of opening prayer was for spirit intelligence to make itself known through any of the vessels present in the room.

After the prayer was read, the music was put on and we were told to relax “and just see what happens”. As I sat there I decided that I would meditate and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere. I closed my eyes and focussed my attention onto my breathing. Eventually I felt my hands tingling as they rested on the arms of the chair and my heart rate began to quicken. I started to feel as though I was going to lose control, as though I was verging on fainting. I wasn’t afraid of losing consciousness, it didn’t feel as though that would occur, but I did feel that I was becoming distanced from my physical body; as though I was sitting just back from my body. It was a very peculiar sensation. At the point when I felt most distanced from my body I heard Christine say that she sensed a presence standing by me. This made me panic, because I too was feeling a distinct presence at this time, as well as feeling as though I might lose control of my body. In response to all of this I panicked and opened my eyes. My heart rate was still racing and I felt light headed. I had to regain control of myself; to calm down and reassure myself that everything was ok.

When I had regained composure I decided to begin my meditation again. This time the physical sensations I felt in the first meditation came on again much faster; my heart rate increased and the tingling in my hands returned. I began to feel myself distancing from my body again, and at the point of greatest distance I felt as though there was a space in my body which could easily be filled, it was as though I had made room in my physical body by moving myself out of it. I then felt an energy move into my left hand, and my index finger began to rise of its own accord. It felt as though it were being lifted by a cushion of air. My second finger began to move upwards also, and soon my hand was quivering on the arm of the chair. I was aware of the movement, but also of the fact that I was not consciously willing it to happen. I was observing the movement, but not with my eyes. This motion began to become more vigorous and soon my whole arm was vibrating and shaking from side to side. All the while my head felt heavy and was drooped down onto my chest. It wasn’t long before my hand began to lower itself; it felt as though the energy was becoming less intense, and as it did so my hand’s movement also became less intense. Soon it was only my two forefingers that remained up, and then these too had returned to normal. When it had all subsided I had “returned” and was fully in control of my body.

I was quite shocked by this experience, and it took quite a while before I was fully calm afterwards.

The second occasion on which this occurred was 19/3/09. Similarly this was a development sitting due to Jon’s absence. I was sitting in the cabinet this time with the intention of conducting a guided meditation. As the meditation progressed it came to a point where the guiding was no longer having any effect. Christine noticed this and decided that she would stop guiding me. Soon after Christine had stopped I once again felt the vibration in my left hand, particularly concentrated on my two forefingers. The sensation was much less intense than on the first occasion but was nevertheless similar in many ways. I was not as shocked this time

Exposure to these experiences has allowed me an intriguing perspective on the mediumship phenomenon: the sensation of another energy (apparently separate from your own consciousness) taking over physical control of your body. It is a very real experience. I have become aware that my experience was just the peak of an enormous iceberg with far reaching potentials.

These experiences need to be explored.

No comments:

Post a Comment