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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Scientific Bases of Spiritual Phenomena

Historical Aspect

While making statement of case in the first chapter, we have pointed to the Western thinkers’ averse rather hostile stance towards spiritualism and our pseudo scholars’ blind submission to the Western scheme of thought. We also need to look at the historical aspect of the problem to acquire and facilitate a better comprehension of the scientific bases of spiritual experience. This is an undeniable historical fact that since the time of ancient Greeks, Eastern thought has played a vital role in the development of Western philosophies and psychologies. This intellectual influence on Western mind reached its zenith during Renaissance period. With the advent of natural sciences, however, the positivistic approach dominated Western science and philosophies and the intellectual West drifted away from the Eastern psychologies and study of transcendence.A quotable instance is that of Plotlines who felt influenced by Persian and Indian philosophies. He, in his reflex action, left a deep impact on Christian mystics, which continued for centuries. He profiled a world of experience beyond the bonds of sense-reality. He offered the doctrine of divorcing the sensuous experience to transcend self-awareness, time and place and achieve the state of ecstatic union with God. This doctrine formed an essential ingredient of Christian psychology. Later, engendering a controversy between science and religion, the progressive thinkers of science-age regarded the mystic aspects of religion as outdated, unscientific and based on ignorance and lack of education. The custodians of religion also took an aggressive stance of which Galileo became an exemplary figure. The gulf then could never be abridged. The empirical intellectual culture in the West rejected the Eastern philosophies and psychologies, disregarding them of any import in the new materialistic scheme of things.
After this fall, however, there was a revived inclination towards Eastern thought in nineteenth century. There are numerous factors responsible for this shift in the Western stance. One of these factors is the fact that the Western psychologies ignored a large range of experience that happens to be an inevitable and dynamic part of our life. This tilt towards spiritual experience is revealed through writings of some leading psychologists of that age.
A Canadian psychiatrist R.M. Bucke narrated an experience how he and two of his friends spent the evening reading Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats, Browning, and especially Whitman. When they parted at midnight, he had a long drive. His mind, deeply under the influence of the ideas, images and emotions called up by the reading and the talk of the evening, was calm and peaceful. He was in a state of quiet enjoyment. Suddenly, without early warning of any kind, he found himself wrapped around, as it were, by a flame-colored cloud. For an instant he thought of fire—some sudden conflagration in the great city. The next (instant) he knew that the light was within himself. Then there came upon him a sense of exultation, of immense joyousness, accompanied or immediately followed by an intellectual illumination quite impossible to describe.
Later they called it as a glimpse of cosmic consciousness.[1]
Many Western psychologists, likewise, became keen in studying transcendent experiences and in this way laid the foundation of ‘Transpersonal Psychology’. C.G. Jung, Medard Boss, Gardener, Lois Murphy, Alan Watts, Maslow, Charles Tart and Robert Ornstein are the leading psychologist who promoted the study of transcendence of self, spirit, unitive consciousness, peak experiences, ecstasy and mystic experiences. They realized that the Western scientific scholars blundered by neglecting this very significant area of human life.
Charles Tart, a major investigator of transcendent experiences observed:
‘Western Psychology has dealt very poorly with the spiritual side of man’s nature, choosing either to ignore its existence or to label it pathological. Yet much of the agony of our time stems from a spiritual vacuum. Our culture, our psychology, has ruled out man’s spiritual nature, but the cost of this attempted suppression is enormous. If we want to find ourselves, our spiritual side, it is imperative for us to look at the psychologies that have dealt with it.’[2]
Even after acquiring this insight into the significance of spiritualism, the Western philosophers and psychologists have failed in appreciating the true knowledge and information the Holy Qur'an has furnished on human psychology. Out of a bias against the Qur'anic thought they deny themselves the enlightenment on the secrets of individual as well as collective personality of a people that lead to the real success. All their interests in Eastern religions’ psychologies revolve mostly around ‘Abhidhamma’, Buddha’s teachings and ancient scriptures of India, China and Japan. They turn away from the Qur'an which describes their actual state of mind:
Most of the people of the Book wish to turn you to disbelief after you have embraced faith, owing to the jealousy they have in their hearts, despite the truth having become manifest to them.[3]
We are making here an attempt to present to our readers, irrefutable spiritual reality to reawaken the human intellect to the ‘Light of Allah’ for prosperity and success here and hereafter. This will remove the spiritual vacuum Charles Tart has pointed to in his transpersonal psychology.
The analysis of the problem in the preceding chapter reveals belief as one of the fundamentals of our life. How it works in self-exploration and self-actualization amounting to incredible manifestations of real human self, falls beyond the scope of reason. However, it functions within the confines of scientific method but in its own peculiar way. The believer who attains a close link with Allah through firm faith in Deen, its perfect implementation and deep love for the Holy Prophet (SAW), experiences his own spiritual observations and undergoes the rigors of experimentation dictated by the discipline. But this has never so far been studied and comprehended in a scientific way.
Studies in parapsychology, however, have attempted to find the facts that have remained hidden from rational scanning. The research has brought forth certain experiences that a psychic undergoes. This has opened doors of investigation to new realities of life difficult for the scientific studies to absorb. Nevertheless, its significance towards understanding spiritualism and the reinforcement it provides to stabilize faith in the spiritual truths can never be underestimated. It is because our spiritual life too operates through the same apparatus of human psyche that engenders psychic experiences. This takes us into an interesting phase of our present inquiry.

The purview of Reason and Science

“There are more things in heaven and earth,
Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
Reason is a unique faculty bestowed upon man by Almighty Allah. It is a distinctive attribute of man. It is intangible itself but has an access to empirical (existential) reality and can perform brilliantly under the illumining guidance of transcendent (essential) reality. Science is its great achievement and it does apprehend the contents of Revelation. However, the Spiritual or the Transcendent Reality and the real self of man (termed as Khudee by Iqbal) are beyond its ken.
Pass beyond Reason,
It’s a lamppost on the way,
Not the destination itself.
Reason is at its best when it conducts scientific investigation. It guides us to solutions and decisions on the bases of data it has collected. If the data are inadequate, the guidance provided to us by reason is ineffective. Then we choose hit and trial because reason falls helpless in the absence of the required knowledge about facts.
Our knowledge is adequate and sufficient so far as the physical world and the empirical self of man are concerned. Here, the guidance of reason is reliable and perfect. But knowledge processed by reason about man’s real self and the Ultimate Reality and the relationship between the two, leaves us blind. This is not the domain of reason. With regard to the physical world we ill-afford any negligence in acting on the advice of reason. But as regards our self and spiritual wellbeing, we are ill-advised to place any reliance on reason.
Here, we require Divine Guidance where reason fails. Reason functions but in its own sphere; the moment it oversteps, it falls. Understanding the limitations of reason and scientific investigation is, therefore, inevitable.

The Scientists on Science

Science employs perfectly valid methods which yield true knowledge but in its own domain. If some skeptics underestimate its efficacy and rate it unreliable, that poses the system a threat to survive. However, the other extreme too is irrational at the same time. Some scholars and scientists dazzled by the soaring success of modern science claim that science would ultimately solve the riddle of the universe and answer any query pertaining to man and the universe. This is an unjustifiable approach and also harmful because it becomes a barrier to the progress of human faculties lying out of its purview. Great scientists, however, do accept it that reason can never fathom reality.
Einstein remarks:
Representatives of science have often made an attempt to arrive at fundamental judgements with respect to values and ends on the basis of scientific method and in this way have set themselves in opposition to religion. These conflicts have all sprung from fatal errors …. Science cannot create ends and, even less, install them in human beings; science can at the most, supply the means by which to attain certain ends. But the ends themselves are conceived by personalities with lofty ethical ideals.1
Jode opines:
(Intuition) is its own authority and carries with it the guarantee of its own authenticity. For those truths which we know intuitively no reasons can be adduced, simply because they are not reached by a process of reasoning. Reason no doubt may be enlisted later to produce arguments in their favour.”2
Dr Crowther aptly remarks:
The last word of science on any topic may perhaps be left for the last man to utter.[5]
Science, therefore, is a perfect guide so far as the physical self of man or his earth-bound life is concerned. But the real self of man transcends human reason. Its nature is unknown to us. It may even be impossible to know it. All that we know about it is confined only to this awareness that it is free; that it has unlimited capacity to develop; that it has an in-built urge to grow; that it is a spiritual substance capable to acquire attributes of the Ultimate Reality – Allah Almighty. These are but the glimpses of the real self that we have to be contented with. ‘Allah is the Light of Heavens and the Earth’; and the real self of man gets illumined by this ‘Light’. Here reason gets extinguished and science only gropes in the dark.

Science and Psychic Experience

Of all the clarity we have so far achieved on limitations of reason and delineation of confines of scientific method, this is but amazing that the scientists of human mind have not given up their probe into psychic experiences and spiritual flights of human soul. They are excluded from their sphere. Terms such as extra-sensory perception, out-of-body experience, or psychic experience describe all episodes or events to which they fail to provide any interpretation.
There are many records of people, who see themselves, or seem to see themselves, from outside themselves. These are the varieties of out-of-body experiences that seem to me to be more common than many people suppose. How common, no one knows;” common because man has been endowed with such capabilities that assist him to develop into his real being.[6]
Robert Rivlin, and Karen Gravelle, in their joint venture Deciphering the Senses have examined the spectrum of human perception and revealed that there may be as many as seventeen senses. Drawing on the most recent scientific research, they have described certain psychic experiences and attempt to find some scientific interpretation to these events.
To perceive the real nature of man’s spiritual life, this is inevitable to comprehend, as far as possible, the dynamics of psychic experiences. The ESPs and OBEs produced here with their scientific analyses intend to equip us with an insight to peruse what actually spiritualism means in Islam. Episodes from spiritual life of Auliya Allah shall further enrich our information. That will enable us to process in our mind what actually the concept of spiritualism is and how one can acquire it through spiritual magnetic experience – the query this work is striving to answer.
These efforts of the scientists (empiricists) although have their own significance in comprehending dynamics of human mind yet they are incomparable with the manifestations of man’s real self (spiritual self) particularly when the real self is closely linked with the Divine Reality – Allah Almighty. Whether the scientists deny or accept the correspondence of real self of man with the Divine Reality is immaterial.
This is very simple to understand. Science deals only with matter and not the spiritual realities. They have their respective scopes and domains. Science is based on reason whereas spiritual existence of man is based on faith in the unseen and revival of life beyond grave. Science believes in trial and error and persistent probe into material reality; spiritual life is based on revelations. The sensory apparatus of man can perceive the spiritual realities in form of observations that can only bewilder human intellect.
A common man experiences something extra-sensory and the magnetic sensitivity or electromagnetic energy is found to be the answer. In the presence of such findings can one refute the verity of spiritual realities parallel to psychic ones – parallel in form though not in substance? The conclusion already drawn in the preceding pages remains that science only gropes in dark so far as man’s real self and its life and growth in relation to its proximity with God is concerned.

Extra-Sensory Perception (ESP)1

The Concept

The episode pertaining to Hadrat Suleman (AS) and the little ant adequately highlights the ESP concept.
A tiny insignificant creature, an ant, heard the troops of Suleman (AS) marching on. Fearing that all the ants would be crushed under their feet, the ant forewarned its whole family:
O ye ants, get into your dwellings, lest Suleman and his troops crush you without even noticing it.[7]
How did a humble creature like an ant perceive Suleman’s(AS) troops approaching? What scientific phenomena are involved in all that? How could the ant know it were none other but Suleman’s troops?
Hadrat Suleman (AS) too heard the little ant’s warning to its folk; he smiled and offered his prayer to Almighty Allah!
This episode referred to in the Qur'anic verse is of special significance here in the context of perceiving the imperceptible. How could an ant know the unknown and hear the inaudible? Or what phenomenon was involved that made Suleman(AS) hear the ant and understand the message? Or did all that happen beyond the confines of time and place? Was there something beyond sensory apparatus? A perception, extra-sensory?
Paradise Lost: When in paradise, both Adam and Eve were in perfect harmony with each other and with the entire nature. They had learnt the inner essence of all things. They sang with the birds and communicated with other species in their own languages. They had acquired this art. Then the unfortunate occurrence put them apart. The man and nature were disassociated. Man failed to communicate with the vegetable and the animal worlds. Innocence expired and the paradise ended with the end of harmony with nature. The communication between the individual and the cosmos terminated. We got confined to our senses - the empirical reality. That was how we had to live on earth!
Paradise Regained: But there still was a way back to harmony with nature, a chance to restore communication between the individual and the cosmos. Once it happens, you can talk to the spirits of the dead and know what is going to be said before it is uttered. Through precise and accurate intuition you become aware if somebody is going to harm you. We have seen how a tiny little creature, ant sensed the impending danger posed by Suleman’s troops.You rise above or beyond time and become timeless which enables you to feel future as present. That is getting out of the frontiers of senses. That is something extra-sensory, the perception of infinite, and the restoration of complete tuning in with nature, the revival of paradise.
Such experiences of harmony and communication with cosmos are those that fall within the realm of parapsychology, extra-sensory perception and psychic phenomena. The one who manages to get into such a state of harmony can then see, know and feel all things on a more expanded level than normal. It is timelessness Adam and Eve enjoyed before the fall when the senses encompassed an all-dimensional communication with nature.

The Case of W T Wolfe[8]

Psychic is a person who can have ESP. William Thomas Wolfe was a psychic. He discovered one day that he could perceive things on a very extraordinary level. He began to meditate more and more. He found that he could often perceive what someone was going to say shortly before making the utterance. He realized that he could do more than just listen to someone talk and evaluate what they were saying. It was like an in-depth experience of what was going on.
He started feeling heat at various spots in his head and other pleasurable sensations. He would get involved in activities like biofeedback as an extension of his meditation. He wanted to know what was actually happening to him. So he began reading books to figure out exactly the phenomenon that had taken over his system.
One night when I had just gone to bed and was lying there perfectly awake I, suddenly exploded into another state of being, some sort of an electrical effect in that I was no longer experiencing or sensing things like an ordinary physical person. I had become a completely different being, no longer a two-legged, two-armed human, but part of a complex of silvery balls just hanging in space. I experienced only blackness, only the existence of the silver balls, which were part of me, extending out into somewhere. You might say it was like the view of someone sitting on an atom. Somehow my consciousness got totally wrapped up in something completely different.
He also had similar perceptions some time afterwards. He took them as ‘sort of an electrical effect’; he would experience something internally, which actually occurred later. It would not just be a reflection of the occurrence but actually the experience of the event although in a slightly different mode than it would happen later.
It’s as though there were two valid points of reality for a given incident. In experiencing something on the front end and then experiencing it again at the second point, it becomes very difficult to distinguish which is the true reality, which came first. After going through something like this it throws you into a different mind set.
Do we perceive what happens or do we make it happen to correspond to what we perceive? This bothered him much. “I believe that perception is a little bit of both, that perception itself can actually go outward rather than just flowing in as most people believe. I think that perceptions themselves can be constructive acts in the ongoing creation of everything around us¾that’s one way I have to explain some of the things that happened to me.” Wolfe’s answer!
We, however, have to see what answer science finds to this inquiry.

Winston Churchill’s ESP[9]

Winston Churchill, during World War II, used to make frequent trips out to the line to boost the morale of his troops. Every day his driver would come, open the car door for him, and Churchill would get seated. One morning, however, the driver opened the door as usual but Churchill refused the open door. He went around to the other side of the car, opened the opposite door and got in. Then they set off. As his car sped up to the destination, on the way, a bomb exploded immediately alongside the car and threw it onto two wheels. Miraculously, it righted itself. Had Churchill followed his normal routine, the car would have gone on the wrong side because of his weight. So he escaped the disaster. Later, he revealed that he had heard a voice saying, “Stop. Go around to the other side and get in there,” when it had been time to get into the car.
What was this voice? What sense was involved in the perception? Was it a communication with the cosmos or what? Wait for the research to come to fore, take up the investigation and answer the inquiry.

Obsession of Son’s Death

A mother feared her elder son Herbert would die in the bathtub. She always remained obsessed with the awful idea. She spent sleepless nights. She made a special point of listening that nothing went wrong. However, she had not disclosed it to Herbert though she had unfolded it to Peter, her younger son.
Years later, Herbert had gone away. On a holiday, however, when he came home the obsession haunted her. She still remembered it. In the evening she heard him whistling and singing in the bathtub. Although she was ready to go out somewhere, she changed her mind and decided to stay back home. Anxiety and fear had taken over her. She kept restlessly listening to his voice, fearing that his singing would subside owing to the dreadful mishap. Then she heard the water running out but no singing. Immediately she ran and opened the door and there he lay, exactly as she had seen him years before in her frightful imagination. There was gas heat and the window was closed and he had apparently been overcome by fumes. She immediately opened the door and windows and called the doctor; Herbert was revived. Had she not been there he doubtlessly would have passed away.
What magic is it that kept the mother on her toes? She perceived it before its actual occurrence. How could it all happen?

An Out-of-Body Experience (OBE) (Consciousness A & Consciousness B)

A person senses that his soul or consciousness has somehow become separated from his physical body, an experience identical to death, R. Crookwall records in his More Astral Projections,
Late at night he felt unwell; by two o’clock it developed into acute gastroenteritis. He vomited and purged until about eight o’clock in the morning and by ten o’clock he had symptoms of acute poisoning. So incapacitated he grew that he could not even call for any assistance. A strong feeling of illness caught him. He quickly reviewed his financial position. Thereafter at no time did his consciousness appear to be in any way dimmed, but he had a sudden feeling that his consciousness was separating from another consciousness existing in his very system. There was a consciousness A and a consciousness B; his ego remained attached to the consciousness A.
The B personality belonged to his body. His physical condition deteriorated and heart fibrillated. He had a sensation of a built-up of individual consciousness in each organ: the head, the heart and the viscera. These components became more individual and the B consciousness began to disintegrate, while the A consciousness seemed to be altogether outside the body, which it could see.
He felt his consciousness gradually expanding and he could see not only his body and the bed in which it was, but everything in the whole house and garden, and then realized that he was seeing not only things at home, but in London and Scotland. He was free in a time dimension of space wherein “now” was in some way equivalent to “here.” He failed to know wherefrom he was being directed, and what was the source of his explanations.
Seeing oneself from without and feeling lifted out of oneself with the bodily consciousness alive is what they call OBE. Does science offer any explanation to that? Let us see.

Some Scientific Explanations of ESP[10]

As a rule, what cannot be explained in the light of current set of scientific laws is either rejected or denied. Later, when scientific method overcomes its bafflement, it makes for the denied facts some room. For instance homeopathy was once treated as illegal practice; its founder Dr. Hahnemanna was banished from his native land. Later it became popular all over the world. Similarly, acupuncture was once totally rejected by the medical scientists. But it is now considered a standard practice in hospitals. Likewise, science has developed some degree of acceptance for psychic phenomena. In some cases, it offers at least partial explanations while for others, such as reincarnation, they are watchful and look for some more developments and evidence. For ESPs and OBEs they now talk of categories. Precognition or telepathy is one category in which a person experiences something without immediate physical reference. Psychokinesis is another type where objects are moved by mental powers. They also regard ESP as a human experience and find its dynamics in magnetism and electromagnetism, which permeate human organism as well as the universe.
It is a Human Experience: ESP is something extra-sensory. It may be sixth or a sixteenth sense. They now talk about seventeen instead of conventional five senses that man is blessed with. The scientists do not consider ESPs as results of some unknown or hidden forces. Nor do they regard them as an offshoot of mystical thinking or some magic or witchcraft. It is a very human experience in which sensory signals are transmitted and received by the body. Nevertheless, there are two considerations: first, they are signals below the normal threshold of a known sensory system; second, they are a form of energy that is being detected by a sense, which we are so far unaware of. But although various forms of ESP lie beyond scientific investigation, yet we expect that one day they will be known as a rational phenomenon.
Magnetic Sensitivity: The question is: are humans insensitive to the earth’s gravitation? It relates to existence of magnetic sensitivity in humans; it has already been demonstrated that other animal species do possess it. Robin Baker experimented to prove it in humans. He has recorded in his book Human Navigation and the Sixth Sense, an experiment in which groups of blindfolded people were set free at some distance from their homes. They were then asked to walk toward where they assumed their homes to be. Baker concluded that humans could use magnetic fields as an aid to navigation in the absence of visual cues.
EEG & SQUID: The evidence to the existence of magnetic sensitivity is supported by a finding which may help explain the perception of projected images that one can perceive around the heads of others and which form the basis of ESP and telepathy. EEG (electroencephalograph) measures the overall electrical activity of the brain. A newly developed device known as SQUID (superconducting quantum interference device) measures extremely fine electrical activity in the brain from just above the scalp as proved by Lloyd Kaufman and his colleagues at New York University. It also maps and records shifts in brain activity emanating from different types of thought. The instrument can also detect how brain processes information and what different parts are involved in pattern recognition and problem solving beside other functions. The research also substantiated the idea that activity of the brain may project out beyond scalp. The brain itself transmits signals of its thinking to the outside world in addition to what already our body and face do in this regard.
This leads us to telepathy or ESP. An ESP, therefore, may be an image of a person’s inner mental state reflected in an electromagnetic energy field projected from his head in the form of an aura. These are the extra-sensory powers that someone can consciously or unconsciously read a person’s mental state from such radiation.
The Mystics’ Third Eye - Pineal Gland: Pineal Gland is the only structure in the brain, which is not bilaterally symmetrical. It is a lonely individual organ surrounded by a greater mass of other brain structures. The scientists consider it a relatively primitive part of the brain. Science has, however, attempted to prove it as an origin of mystic thinking. That is why it has also attracted the attention of mystics and philosophers.
Descartes considered pineal gland as the seat of human soul. He propounded that it was in the pineal that spinal fluid was formed: the supposed medium of exchange between body and soul. Various religions particularly in the east regard it as a “third eye”. They hold that through it can be visioned the light of the world and divine guidance.
Those who practice yoga advise to close the eyes and hold the index finger about half an inch away from the middle of forehead. This stimulates the pineal gland. A bright aura of light becomes visible as a symbol of divine inspiration. In modern theory of mysticism pineal gland is named as ‘inner eye’ to see the mystical light within the soul. Some believe that if a small flashlight is shone at the middle of the forehead the pineal will get stimulated to function better. So we can safely conclude that Pineal Gland serves as a clue to biological functioning of human organism facilitating its spiritual dynamism.

Electromagnetic Energy and ESP

One thinks of a friend or relative not heard or seen for months, even years. Then the same moment, telephone rings and the person is on the line. You may also get a flash that something is about to happen or has just happened hundreds of miles away. Then the occurrence is confirmed at the same time, in the same manner. While talking business or discussing informally things concerning different chores of life, one suddenly knows exactly what is going to be said before it is uttered, or exactly what something will look like before it is seen. These and many others are the experiences, sensory or extra-sensory, for which science has yet to supply empirical substantiation. Extra-sensory implies outside the range of normal senses. But do we know all our senses and their individual actual scope of function? These experiences may, therefore, be truly sensory, i. e. they may be completely internal, within the person who perceives them, and not manifestations of any external power or source. The receiving sensory system may be muffled or enveloped in mystery, incapable to comprehend the proceedings.
Karen Gravella’s account of electromagnetic energy in pertaining to ESP is a valuable study of the phenomena.
If psychic perception does occur through some sensory system that allows a person to literally snatch thoughts and images out of the air, what can be the means through which the images are received? The most likely explanation is that some kind of sensing of electromagnetic radiation is involved, but through a mechanism which is still totally hidden. In this way, the electromagnetic vibratory frequencies of colors themselves could be perceived directly. And this could also correspond, of course, with the sources of electromagnetic energy emanating from the body. The kinds of brain signals detected by the SQUID are extremely weak, however, and would only account for the kind of psi experiences that occur at close range. [11]
A study accomplished by James Beal of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center points to the microwave energy in the “X-band” (around 9 giga hertz) involved in the subject puzzle of human psychic functioning. This frequency falls within the bands used in commercial broadcast applications (when a news crew goes live, it sends back signals to the station on either 2, 7 or 13 GHz), He holds that this is the frequency at which many living organisms also seem to emit radiation. This suggests an analogy between life processes in the human body and the process how radio and television signals are created, transmitted and received through various modifications.

Static Electricity and Brain

The origination of psychic phenomena may also be engendered due to human body’s peculiar responses to forces like electricity in nature. Static electricity particularly, can affect the body directly, in the same way the microwaves are absorbed. It makes the nerves of the brain and the rest of the nervous system ignite more easily and sharpens the reflexes. Generally, it makes a person more alert. In the presence of static electricity discrimination of levels of a light’s brightness is increased. It happens in the same way, as brain perceives the difference between a solid glow and a rapidly flickering light.

Effects of –ive and +ive ions on Human Mind

There are various phenomena associated with positively charged electrical fields and the negative flow of free ions. If negative ion flow is well maintained in the air it adds peacefulness, tranquility, improved healing and what not to human life. Changes, on the other hand, in the negative ion supply in the atmosphere generate adverse reactions like depression, lethargy, despondency etc. An approaching storm causes a build-up of positive ions in the air. Sequel to that the flow of electricity in the nervous system slows down. Hence the consequences.
These various forms of energy are the forces to which the body responds. Whether or not some specific sensory system detects them is not yet ascertained. However, there is a likelihood that such a sensory mechanism does exist which has not so far been known. For the finding is that the transmission is either aided or hindered by large amounts of electricity present in the environment.

Man in Electromagnetic Environment

The animals forewarn an earthquake; they bark, cry out, or try to break free and give other peculiar specific reactions. We see dogs sometimes reporting what happened to their master even at a long distance. This must not be simply knowing by them about the imminent danger.
Then what does all that mean?
Helmut Tributsch of the Free University of Berlin has found that human skin is quite damp, due to secretions of sweat glands. On the contrary, animals mostly have relatively dry skin. Some electromagnetic disturbances precede an earthquake and large amounts of static electricity build up in the air. Owing to having damp skin human organism does not react. However, animal’s fur gets electrified, literally bristling with the static charge. This effect is intensified when the animal is in an enclosed place space like a house. This makes the animal extremely uncomfortable. Then horses try to break free, dogs bark violently, and cats move their kittens out of doors.
Communication might occur on a much lower frequency. The earth itself vibrates constantly between. 1 and 100 times a second, with an average frequency around 10 hertz., falling in a range between 8 and 13 hertz. The brain wave pattern associated with sleep and dreaming also operates at the same frequency. This is also the frequency of light flashes or rapid-fire sounds that can bring on an epileptic seizure. In view of all that the scientists suggest that minute changes in this natural vibratory frequency might account for profound psychic changes and perceptions.
We also do not thoroughly know the functions of all the various parts of brain. If one of them is supposedly involved in sensing electromagnetic spectrum, a link between the body’s hormone/enzyme processes and some as-yet-unknown environmental factor can be pointed to. At present, the only thing known about the science of psychic phenomena is that they seem to be matched fairly closely with alpha waves¾electrical signals produced by brain when it is engaged in activities such as dreaming and creative thought.

Hadrat Suleman (AS) and the Ant

This would be worthwhile to close the argument with a special note on the episode pertaining to Hadrat Suleman(AS) and the ant referred to at the outset.
Was there involved some electromagnetic field or the Earth’s vibration frequency? What type of perception that was which the little ant and Hadrat Suleman(AS) experienced? The ant not only perceived their movement, it also knew about Suleman (AS)!
Conclusion: This is one of the miracles of the Qur'an that ages ago, it pointed to the realities which now man is so anxiously probing into. The electromagnetic causality of such experiences to which science has yet to provide substantial meaning bears special import. The ant knew the unknown and heard the inaudible. Suleman (AS) heard the ant and understood the message. It is compatible with those laws of science that science has yet to discover but which do exist in nature. The scientific method confirms that its findings are never final because it is an ever-growing process. On the contrary, the divine realities are eternal; they are unchangeable; man has to apply all his faculties to explore, find, learn and believe in all such realities. So far as they remain unknown and unseen, man must place his faith in the unseen reality, submit himself to the Creator of the universe and obey his commands to triumph in his quest for the most coveted scientific knowledge. The more he delays his belief in the unseen, the more distant he drifts from the truth. And the distance involved is measurable in millennia!

The Almighty within Us[12]

Scientific probe is one way of looking at the psychic phenomena. There is yet another approach on that. You may find the century’s best sellers and reward classics on the subjects like the ‘giant inside you’, ‘the cosmic power within you’ or ‘habits of most effective people in the world’ and so on. They claim that you are the ‘artificer’ of your own future. As you change your thought-life, you change your destiny. They also pronounce that methods they teach in their books have already helped thousands of people to experience guidance, health, prosperity, happiness, and peace of mind; that over hundred thousand people have already used these secrets to obtain a happier and more fruitful life.
The literature thus produced spells out secrets of a life-changing art to discover the latent power you are endowed with to realize your objectives. Then it suggests certain exercises as well based on religious faith and some psychic phenomena to conquer difficulties with the divine help of the ‘cosmic power’ or the ‘Almighty Within Us’ that permeates our existence.
Let us put aside the intellectual value of both theory and practice it contains. Also disregard for a while its evaluation on the spiritual scale from purely mystic point of view. What enhances its interest value is the study how today, in the modern scientific era, people put to use, though haphazardly, the power of faith in God even outside the world of Islamic faith. This is heartening to see that through spiritual prayers and practices, modern man feels keen to get out of his difficulties caused by materialism and that people from other religions also are inclining towards the spiritual practices which were peculiar to Islam.
They cannot, however, fully succeed without Islam as there is no religion on earth but Islam that offers a sound system of spiritual uplift ensuring real success in worldly life. Those who search peace through spiritual means have to adopt this spiritual system having irrefutable scientific bases. However, we regard and welcome their interest in spiritual practices even outside Islamic faith as a step ahead in this direction. Islam will provide them perfection as described in the subsequent pages. Here, we need to peruse what this literature presents.

Tuning in

Dr Murphy holds that there is a power in you that has never been fully released and that moves the whole world. ‘It is within you.’ Those who mastered tuning in with this amazing power rose to heights in a short time. You possess countless potentials to develop and the power within you, discovers them and lifts you out of failure, misery, and despondency. It guides and directs you and opens up new vistas for you, “dries your tears, dissolves your problems and sets you on the high road to happiness, freedom and peace of mind.” This power enables you ‘to move onward, upward and Godward along all lines.’

It Heals

Mrs. Helen Hanford LA California, succeeded to contact this wonderful Power and got rid of her trouble:
I began to think that the power of the Godhead was within my own mind and that I could use it. I began to think that this power was greater than hydrogen bombs, atomic energy or electricity and that all these were nothing as compared to the All-Powerful God within me. For ten days I had been unable to lift my arm upward without unbearable pain, which caused me to scream at times. On the way to my family doctor, I tuned in on the Cosmic Power and affirmed: Through the Power of the Al-mighty within me, I am now moving my arm freely. I lifted my arm to a horizontal position with no pain whatsoever, and I moved it more freely than had been possible for some weeks. The doctor tested my arm, and all goes well. Truly, the kingdom of God is within each one of us!

It Brightens

Dr. Lothar Von Blenk-Schmidt is an air space scientist. Whenever he faces some problem in the engineering department related to space projects, he stills the wheels of his mind. He then affirms quietly: Infinite Intelligence within me casts light on this project. On this his mind suddenly gets illuminated with the answer. Infinite Intelligence within him responds to his requests.

It Delivers

A financial wreck developed ulcers and hypertension and was “in a mess.” He was obsessed by the idea of a Jinx as if God was punishing him for his past sins.
He was advised that as long as he would believe in a Jinx following him he would suffer because a man’s beliefs change into experiences and events. The bankrupt followed a prayer advised to him and got rid of the trouble.
He prayed loudly five or six times a day, and convalesced in a month’s time. The new idea enthroned in his mind brought him riches of life.

Demonstrate Your Beliefs

A woman had developed a wonderful philosophy of life. She wrote a thesis on A Way of Life which sounded scientific as well as spiritual. However, her personal life was chaotic having been divorced four times.
She was exhorted that her postulates and philosophical niceties must also be put to practice. Her “head-knowledge” had to become “heart-knowledge”; i.e. a living part of her personality.
Simultaneously she filled her mind and heart with the following prayer. With that, she became completely transformed:
God is love, and His love fills my soul. God is peace, and His peace fills my mind and body. God is perfect health, and His health is my health. God is joy, and His joy is my joy, and I feel wonderful!
They say that thought must be made flesh, i.e. it must be embodied in your experience. You must demonstrate your religious beliefs in all areas of your life.

Some Dreams Rescue Life

A few months ago I was scheduled to travel by plane. The night prior to my departure I had a dream. I saw that I was reading headline of a newspaper about a plane disaster, killing all the passengers. I woke up, flabbergasted, perturbed and charged with feeling of dread. I found that my wife was awake. Staring at me she said, “Did you have the same dream that I had?” Behold! She told me exactly the same dream that I had seen, in all its details! I cancelled the trip. Next morning the same flight had a fatal crash; all lives were lost, exactly as I had seen in the dream. The dream saved my life.
We do not dream with our conscious mind awake. In sleep the conscious mind is put out; the subconscious and the unconscious mind find free play. The subconscious mind dramatizes its contents during sleep; It presents many symbolic pictures and illogical situations.
But they say the cosmic power protects life through dreams as in the dream quoted here. ‘Dreams are the television series of your Deeper Mind. There are all kinds of dreams, including dreams of pre-vision, where you see an event before it happens objectively and which may apply to yourself or to others. The dream may reveal the fulfillment of your desire or it may be a warning to avoid a tragedy.’

The Faith Pays

From North Carolina, a man decided to take God as his partner. He developed the feeling that God is the Living Spirit within him. He talked to this Invisible Presence in him and affirmed: “You are my Partner, and I am going to ask you to guide, direct, and prompt me in all ways. We are now a team, and we can’t fail.”
This young man terribly lacked the courage to go into business for himself. For long he remained shy. But after praying in the above manner and affirming his union with the Divine Presence he felt in him a new wave of strength and confidence. He went into a deal for a restaurant, and with magic qualities of faith and courage paid off for the deal in a year’s time. He did not care for the relatives who would always discourage him that he didn’t have a chance and that he would ultimately fail. But he realized deep within himself that nothing could defeat him, as he possessed the priceless quality of faith in the Cosmic Power within him to watch over him in all his ways.
His secret was that he held on tenaciously to the idea that his Senior Partner would advise him and prosper him until his subconscious mind had absorbed the idea and had brought it to pass.

[1]. Cosmic Consciousness.
[2]. Transpersonal Psychologies.
[3] Qur'an (al-Baqarah) 2:109.
1. Shakespeare, Hamlet.
[4]. Dharb-e-Kaleem by Allama Iqbal.
1. Out of My Later Years by Albert Einstein, pp. 25, 124.
2. Philosophical Aspects of Modern Science by C E M Jode, p. 215.
[5]. The Great Design; by Dr. Crowther, p.35
[6]. The Facts of Life by Dr R D Laing.
1. ‘Deciphering the Senses’ by Robert- Rivlin and Keren Gravelle
[7]. Qur'an (an-Namal) 27:18
[8]. ‘Deciphering the Senses’ by Robert Rivlin and Keren Gravelle.
[9]. ‘Deciphering the Senses’ by Robert Rivlin and Keren Gravelle.
[10]. ‘Deciphering the Senses’ by Robert Rivlin and Keren Gravelle.
[11]. ‘Deciphering the Senses’ by Robert Rivlin and Keren Gravelle.
[12]. The Cosmic Power by Joseph Murphy.