Standing within the Religious Coronary heart

An Interview with Laurie Conrad by Diana Souza. Ithaca, New York.

Q Laurie, the primary query I'd prefer to ask – I wish to know what you imply by the phrases "standing in my coronary heart" and "I regarded inside and located him within the religious coronary heart". You wrote: "I used to be standing in my coronary heart. My coronary heart was throughout me within the room, surrounding me. I may do little greater than look across the room in any respect that was manifesting from my coronary heart, intrigued and questioning."

A The passage you simply learn was about my expertise with the sage Paul Brunton, virtually thirty years in the past. Once I say "I regarded inside and located him within the religious coronary heart" … There may be the bodily coronary heart that beats and offers us life, and there may be additionally a religious coronary heart the place clairvoyants typically go to search out their pictures. You could possibly say that it’s the place the soul, the person soul has its mysterious connection to the Divine, to God.

So the divine pictures, the photographs which are given to the soul by the Divine, are first acquired by the soul in what I’d name the religious Coronary heart. I’m not the one particular person to make use of that time period – I didn’t give you that vocabulary. The religious Coronary heart is a mystical time period.

When the clairvoyant or mystic is clairvoyantly seeing into different realms or tapping into the longer term, or seeing or going to different locations on earth whereas in waking state consciousness or in dream state, they’re typically trying within the religious Coronary heart to search out these pictures. I consider that many, if not most individuals have these experiences whereas in dream state, they’re simply not conscious of it. However clairvoyants can go there whereas in abnormal waking state consciousness to search out these pictures of different realms or different locations on earth or the longer term.

Q The typical reader goes to surprise how your coronary heart might be within the room throughout you?

A Properly, I feel I ponder about that myself. It’s a part of that grand thriller of Life. I’ve had the same expertise with music, the place I’ll out of the blue be in my coronary heart, standing in that mystical coronary heart, and the notes to my items can be throughout me. So I suppose that I’m going to the same place when I’m decoding Chopin or writing my music. I have no idea that we are able to actually clarify these items. Whenever you meditate, should you meditate, I feel it’s simpler to know this. In reality, it could be very tough to clarify or describe it for individuals who don’t meditate.

The religious Coronary heart is mostly believed to be situated within the seat of the soul. In my expertise, it’s tough the place the bodily coronary heart is, and extra within the middle of my physique. The soul itself is so past the bounds and bounds of our bodily physique, we can’t even start to think about the grandeur of the soul. So my private self, together with my particular person little thoughts – was sitting in that room with the nice sage Paul Brunton. He was close to the tip of his life on earth and he was absolutely enlightened. A Christian would in all probability say that he had reached sainthood. Within the Indian traditions, they might say that he was absolutely enlightened. In his presence, I did have this massive mystical expertise, the place I skilled the contents of my coronary heart throughout me within the room – as if I used to be in a really deep, superior meditation or contemplation.

I had solely been meditating, I feel, for just a few months after I met him. So it was a really memorable and happily expertise.

This human physique that we’re in, in comparison with the soul – and the bodily mind in comparison with Consciousness Itself – are minuscule as compared. So, I may need been allowed to expertise my coronary heart round me, filling the entire room to show me this. I may need been given the expertise in order that I may see and perceive that we’re all a lot larger than we consider ourselves to be, that the Soul is immense. There are different meanings to this prevalence as effectively, which means that we’d not have time for on this interview. It was a mystical expertise. It's not one thing we people can simply discover phrases for.

Q You additionally mentioned that you simply first met the Dalai Lama in your desires, earlier than you even knew who he was. Later you met him in particular person. Inform us your impressions of the Dalai Lama. Anecdotes …

A Our Holiness, the Dalai Lama of Tibet. Properly, he’s an additional particular person. I’ve seen him and met with him in a gaggle setting many instances. One of many first issues that caught me is his unimaginable humorousness – and his great pleasure. The following factor that I seen was his extraordinary earnestness and seriousness when he speaks about prayer. He and his monks are consistently praying for the world. He’s a really humble and holy man. And I really like that juxtaposition of these two attributes of his character, the humor and the holiness. He’s mentioned to be the incarnation of Compassion, and every little thing that he says and does revolves across the increased Compassion.

When he speaks concerning the increased Compassion, it’s all the time mixed with Knowledge – the Larger Knowledge which roughly corresponds to the Knowledge of the Catholics and different religions: that we’re not the physique, that the fabric world just isn’t Final Actuality. This increased Compassion just isn’t the abnormal, sentimental emotion most individuals name compassion; Paul Brunton would name that emotion, or the sentimentality of empathy, the decrease octave of true Compassion. The Dalai Lama would say that true Compassion additionally consists of this increased Knowledge. By making use of Knowledge, we’d have Compassion for each sentient being, each being on earth – simply because they’re within the physique, and subsequently, undergo. That’s the true Compassion. This Compassion would additionally embrace the view that you simply cease individuals if they’re behaving badly, as a result of of their dangerous conduct they’re hurting themselves and others. So, on this definition of Compassion, Knowledge stands within the background in a loving, indifferent method. The Witness place, let's say, of Paul Brunton, once we are in a position to clearly see what is really finest for everybody within the state of affairs. That’s true Compassion.

On the entire, we people come to the world primarily from our private ideas and decrease feelings. The large academics, such because the Dalai Lama and the sages, the saints – they’re all attempting to get us to come back from the next place, the upper octave of all the non-public feelings. Brunton speaks about this at size in his Notebooks , and the Dalai Lama additionally has written many volumes of books.

As for anecdotes, I’d not even know the place to start. Primarily I keep in mind his laughter, his pleasure. Subsequent the sacredness that he brings with him. The readability of his thoughts. The primary time I used to be in the identical room with him, I clairaudently heard a really low tone in every single place within the room, vibrating the whole room – maybe it was the power of his very being, or his mantra, his inside prayers. I had not heard that phenomenon earlier than that day, nor since, not even whereas in his presence.

QI keep in mind a narrative you instructed concerning the Dalai Lama coming and clearing an area the place he was going to talk, with a storm?

A Sure, that was in Boston, when he spoke at Harvard. A pal and I have been staying at Mataji's ashram for just a few days. I consider Mataji took over for Ramakrishna. She had an ashram close to Boston, and we had determined to remain there as a substitute of at a lodge in Boston. We had come to listen to the Dalai Lama when he spoke at Harvard.

I have no idea what 12 months this was, but it surely was a few years in the past. It was one of many Dalai Lama's first visits to this nation. Mataji despatched three of us forward, to rearrange a gathering between her and the Dalai Lama simply earlier than the lecture. She had by no means met him. So she despatched us forward to speak to his entourage, and organize it. I all the time thought this uncommon task was a ruse of some type – Mataji was absolutely enlightened, she didn’t must ship three younger human seekers to rearrange this assembly with the Dalai Lama. She and the Dalai Lama have been completely in a position to organize it themselves, by means of non-verbal communication, mentally. Because it turned out, the younger lady driving us there had met Paul Brunton in desires by means of her childhood – as I had visited with the Dalai Lama first in desires as an grownup. In these desires, Brunton taught her. She came upon who he was years later, when she noticed his in a e book. That was in all probability why Mataji despatched us forward collectively, in order that my pal and I’d meet this younger lady and listen to her story. Additionally that I’d expertise the storm, to at some point inform the story on this interview. Mataji, like Paul Brunton, was completely in a position to see into the longer term.

In any case, the three of us all acquired into a little bit automotive, an outdated, very overwhelmed down automotive that we hoped would get us there. And we did get there early sufficient to rearrange a gathering between the extraordinary Mataji and the saintly Dalai Lama.

After we had completed talking together with his individuals, they readily agreed to the assembly, and we have been more than happy and joyful that our mission had been achieved so simply. I made a decision to go exterior on my own to attend for Mataji to reach. It was a gorgeous, calm, early fall day. The solar was shining and there I used to be, on the attractive Harvard campus; I had by no means been there. College students have been sitting underneath the bushes finding out, or strolling to or from their lessons alongside the paths. I walked out of the lecture constructing door a little bit method and fortunately stack there, taking in the great thing about the scene. Instantly, an enormous storm got here up; an intense and shocking, surprising wind. College students' papers have been flying in every single place, branches touring in every single place, the bushes have been virtually bending. I attempted to take shelter towards an enormous tree close to the door, wind and leaves flying, college students now scurrying alongside the paths, bent over towards the storm, attempting to retrieve their scattered papers. It was fairly one thing. It felt like I had inadvertently stepped right into a vacuum cleaner or a washer.

It in all probability rented for about two or three minutes. Then the storm stopped simply as shortly because it had arisen. I mentioned to myself: "Good Heavens, what was that?"

Then I laughed. I noticed that it was in all probability the Dalai Lama purifying the grounds of Harvard earlier than he arrived. And that's nonetheless my view. He's a really highly effective being, the Dalai Lama. He has super energy. But, by way of his teachings, in all probability his greatest message to the world is kindness, to be form to others. And when you have adopted the messages from Our Girl, the Madonna, to the world – She has been showing in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia for nearly twenty years to 6 visionaries – She additionally says to guide a form, easy life. She says that we must always attempt to sample our lives after St. Louis. Therese of Lisieux. And St. Therese of Lisieux by no means even left her convent! She had the best of lives. She had, at most, a little bit desk in her convent cell and a mattress. Perhaps a chair. At one level she had a vase in her room, however she thought she could be getting too connected to it, so she requested them to take away it. She mainly did her every day work and chores on the convent and was form to the opposite nuns. And but she turned one of many best Catholic saints. In Medjugorje, Our Girl mentioned mainly: decide your path and lead a form, easy life.

The Dalai Lama is now a celeb, he’s a really well-known man. He has written books and lectured in lots of international locations. He’s world identified. And he’s nonetheless some of the humble and easy of males. They are saying that he has one pair of footwear and two units of his maroon robes. He stays utterly untouched and unspoiled by the world. He considers himself a monk, but he’s each the temporal and religious chief of his nation. However he lives like a easy monk. So, in that sense alone, I feel he’s an unimaginable and saintly man, and a task mannequin for humanity.

Our interview couldn’t be lengthy sufficient to essentially talk about the Dalai Lama. Once I first noticed him in particular person, I inwardly instructed Our Girl that I felt as if I had met Her Son. I felt as if I had seen Christ on earth, that I had listened to Him communicate.

Q Fashionable psychiatric science in all probability wouldn’t be too pleasant of their analysis of mystical states and the saints and individuals who expertise them. Many fashionable psychiatrists could even name what you check with as "inside imaginative and prescient" and "motion pictures in my head" as delusional. How can these mystical, inside visions and flicks be differentiated from a vivid creativeness?

A That may be a very astute query. And I feel, in my case, in all probability the biggest "proof" that an expertise is not only creativeness or delusion is that if I inwardly noticed a spot, after which I later noticed that actual place in a e book or journal or in receiving state consciousness . Or if I had a imaginative and prescient of the longer term, it then occurred simply as I had seen it unfold just a few days or perhaps weeks later, which fortunately it all the time did. If I clairvoyantly noticed a misplaced animal in a specific spot, the animal was discovered there. Once I clairaudially heard our Girl's voice talking to me, my little canine Guinivere heard it additionally – she was nonetheless standing on the road nook, in search of the particular person behind the voice though I had already walked on half a block. Most of my experiences have been validated proper right here on the earth airplane. So if I had an inside imaginative and prescient of somebody doing one thing or saying one thing or understanding that they have been in hassle – I’d discover out later that sure, that had, in truth, occurred precisely as I noticed it. So I truly was very fortunate in that method. Personally, I had plenty of validation. In any other case, I in all probability would have shocked myself if my experiences have been simply creativeness or hallucination.

That is an attention-grabbing and necessary matter. In case you are having excessive mystical experiences, you might be being thrown into one other, increased consciousness. You’re already in all probability extra delicate than most individuals. And if individuals inform you that you’re loopy they usually preserve telling you that you’re loopy, you would possibly simply start to assume that you’re. However there are additionally people who find themselves delusional. One straightforward option to decide the reality of their clairvoyance is to see if the predictions come true. The saints have been by no means unsuitable.

Within the Catholic Church, visions and clairvoyance is not going to make you a saint. And the Church is extraordinarily cautious about testing and evaluating such talents. First, they have a look at the overall conduct, benefit and rationality of the particular person. Many visions can’t be verified. Among the saints have seen their guardian angel. How can that be verified? Is that this particular person rational the remainder of the time? Do they appear to have a hysterical nature? Do they see or predict issues that may be confirmed unsuitable later? The Catholic Church observes that particular person fastidiously and analyzes their entitlement life on earth, which I feel may be very sensible.

St. Teresa of Avila, in her books, her Autobiography and in The Inside Fort , speaks of these items. She says that ordinarily she just isn’t an imaginative particular person. Subsequently, it seems to be unilaterally that her visions would have been produced by her personal thoughts, by her creativeness. However she additionally says that when we have now visions of any type, we must always categorically low cost them, simply to be on the protected facet, simply in case it’s the creativeness or Previous Nick producing them. She additionally says that if it’s a true expertise, you’ll simply comprehend it. A part of that understanding is one thing that may not likely be verbalized.

A part of it’s the endurance of the magical expertise. It’s going to stick with you for the remainder of your life, phrase for phrase, picture by picture. That has all the time amazed me. However those that have had mystical experiences agree that that is true.

Simply as on the delivery of Christ, when the angel appeared to the shepherds, a lot of the kids that Our Girl, the Madonna, has appeared to by means of historical past are shepherds. As in Medjugorje, in these present visions of Our Girl on earth. (She says they are going to be her final seem on earth.) The youngsters in Medjugorje have been on their option to maintain the sheep when Our Girl first appeared to them. In Fatima, the kids have been tending the sheep when the angel first appeared to them. And naturally, Christ is named the Shepherd, and we’re His flock. All through historical past, She has primarily appeared to kids shepherds and shepherdesses. In a single occasion, the kids have been very uneducated, they may in all probability learn learn nor write. They spoke a neighborhood, rural patois, and Our Girl wave them a really lengthy, sophisticated message superbly said and utilizing phrases they didn’t even know. The youngsters repeated it verbatim afterward, with out altering a syllable, even years later. This once more exhibits the ability of true mystical experiences, that they’re indelibly imprinted on our consciousness. That is fairly completely different from our abnormal expertise.

Q How can we see the inside objective of the autumn of a sparrow? You had an accident that just about ended your life. It has partially disabled you. And it even erased for some time your clairvoyant talents. But you say you don’t consider in accidents. In view of the destruction and incapacity it introduced into your life, if that accident was Divinely ordinated, then what doable objective may it have served to enhance your life and consciousness?

A That’s one other deep query, and never that easy to reply.

Q The autumn of a sparrow?

A Sure. That was from a quote from Christ Himself. He instructed His disciples that each hair on our head is numbered and that there’s Windfall within the fall of a sparrow. Now the scientists agree, they name it DNA, the little chart of our life in these strands.

Positively, I feel my automotive accident was Divinely orchestrated. If there was damaging intent, which can also be doable, absolutely God allowed it. And in my perception framework, if He allowed it, it might be permitted for the purification of my soul – and / or for the souls of others, or for the sake of the world. Our life on earth, in my thoughts, is only a steady deepening.

A steady deepening of being and understanding. Actually, I’d additionally hope that it’s a deepening of holiness; and there are particular experiences that we’re given to assist deepen knowledge and power.

It has been greater than fifteen years for the reason that accident, and I definitely have had sufficient time to consider why it may need been allowed to occur. Personally, I would desire that I both didn’t should study these classes or that I used to be in a position to study them a special method. However I’m definitely not going to query the higher imaginative and prescient that God and the soul possess. Fortunately, the small particular person, the particular person within the physique, Laurie Conrad on this occasion, was not in cost the day of the accident. Or any day. God and the soul are in cost. We will see the poverty of our personal judgment even inside our personal lifetime on earth: issues that we wished so very badly once we have been younger now appear so undesirable, and even dangerous. Has that ever occurred to you? Properly, I look again and simply inwardly say: "Thank God you didn’t get what you wished". As a result of both it was not good for me or one thing significantly better got here alongside. So, even inside the timeframe of our earthly existence, we are able to start to have that overview of occasions and the worth of occasions, whilst they occur. How may we probably second guess the knowledge of the soul and of God? You cannot. If I look inside with whole honesty – which is all the time one of the simplest ways to replicate on occasions – as arduous because it has been for myself and people round me, a number of the largest classes of my religious life in all probability got here on account of this accident.

Properly, I may say, I feel, that after I was flat on my again all these months and years, it was the primary time that I felt union with the Larger Love, the Love from the universe. That the universe, the whole of the Hearts of all of the creatures that populate the universe, actually does maintain this extraordinary Love for every and all of us. And sure, in fact, it’s the increased Love, the Divine Love from God expressing itself by means of all of the souls of all creatures – however additionally it is from all these mixed souls and the universe itself. I used to be proven this in a imaginative and prescient of images, and I can nonetheless see it hung in my thoughts's eye, like a little bit film. A cosmic Love. However it’s then additionally a cosmic or common love that I felt pouring into me and round me. It was as if each creature on earth wished me effectively, was sending me love and therapeutic. And that, I feel, in my vocabulary, can be a excessive mystical expertise. To really feel that common Love from all creatures. And it’s there for all of us, each second of day-after-day. We’re simply not conscious of it, conscious of it. And I used to be acutely aware of it as a result of I used to be knocked flat on my again for therefore lengthy with a sure kind of harm. I’ve the sensation that anybody who’s that significantly injured, or that significantly ailing, is given that chance.

I keep in mind studying, way back, reviews and tales that mentioned individuals with polio, in iron lungs, generally skilled an unimaginable peace. I feel it could be much like what I skilled. Despite the horrible difficulties and the horror of it, I additionally felt the deepest peace I had ever felt in my life. Granted, I knew easy methods to meditate, I had been meditating for a few years.

And I primarily mediated whereas I used to be mendacity there half acutely aware and feeling half alive. However, I feel that even when I didn’t know easy methods to meditate, I’d have been thrown into that stunning inside place anyway. And it was a rare peace and love coming in, even on the similar time that the car, the physique was dysfunctional and miswired. I had pretty extreme head accidents. I couldn’t perceive what individuals have been saying to me or actually communicate for nearly a 12 months. I had amnesia. As , I nonetheless can go right into a semi-coma state if I overload myself with work or concepts, as I did this previous week.

At the moment, after the accident, the physique, the car was completely dysfunctional – however this different place was so huge and so deep, so crammed with Love. And I have no idea if I’d have ever skilled it with out that accident.

I feel one other invaluable lesson or worth I discovered after my accident was the distinction between humiliation and humility. Within the monastery they ask for poverty, chastity and obedience, which is one other method of claiming humility. Once I was first injured, it was very humiliating. Not for lengthy, as a result of the emotion was too tough for me to bear. I had been an clever, succesful, revered and unbiased particular person with a giant profession – and all that modified instantly. Instantly, I couldn’t do something, not for myself or others. I couldn’t gown or feed myself. I couldn’t sit up. Docs talked about me as if I used to be not there. I may not likely communicate or perceive what individuals have been saying. I couldn’t even type phrases internally, which implies I couldn’t even pray. I had forgotten most of my very own private historical past and after I tried to stroll I fell over. Six years later, I used to be nonetheless crossing the road following grade college kids with little bright-colored again packs slung on their backs as a result of I couldn’t inform the place the vehicles have been. I couldn’t play concert events for seven years.

And so I needed to in a short time discover ways to inadvertently stand in one other place, a spot which I’d name humility, being humble. And what I imply by that’s being humble earlier than God – as a result of compassion solely comes once we evaluate ourselves to different human beings. Evaluating ourselves to others might be neurotic, and it may be harmful. Humiliation is greater than counter-productive, it’s ruinous.

However if you end up really humble, you might be simply merely kneeling earlier than God. And after I simply humbly knelt earlier than God inwardly and mentioned to myself: "Properly, I’m drastically injured and God needs this from me", the Energy of the Divine got here by means of me, the Energy of the universe got here by means of me – and out of the blue I felt stronger and extra peaceable than I had ever felt.

By way of therapeutic others, after the accident, I now didn’t even must obtain fulfilling requests consciously, to ensure that individuals to be completely healed. Earlier than the accident, I typically needed to work fairly diligently and pray a lot to acquire miraculous healings for others. I feel this new, extra automated therapeutic for others started as a result of this increased, divine Love, therapeutic power – no matter you need to name it –

Q Presence.

A The Divine Presence was now coming by means of me. I used to be simply naturally radiating it, as a result of I used to be so crammed with it.

So there have been tangible rewards. I used to be now feeling an extremely deep peace and love and power – and others have been being spontaneously and miraculously healed with out my even working at it consciously. That is nonetheless true.

However this distinction between humiliation and humility is, I feel, crucial for everybody. And we have now to study it, I feel, if we actually need to stand earlier than God. Or lets say, in an effort to stand in your increased self, stand with the soul, in a continuing method. Not simply the magical glimpse right here and there that you simply could be given in meditation.

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