Monday, August 18, 2014

REPOST: Global Meditation Event Aims to Break World Record

Alternative medicine expert Deepak Chopra, M.D., life coach Gabrielle Bernstein, and singer India Arie join forces in an attempt to set a Guinness World Record for the biggest group meditation in history. Read the article below for more info about the global meditation event.

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Meditation may seem like a solo endeavor, but one large-scale event taking place in Toronto today aims to bring together thousands of people to get their zen on—simultaneously. 
Today at noon EST, alternative medicine expert Deepak Chopra, M.D., will be joined by life coach Gabrielle Bernstein, and singer-songwriter India Arie in an attempt to set a Guinness World Record for the largest group meditation in history. To successfully break the record, the event will have to draw 15,000 participants—and it's well on the way to take the title. "We already have 50,000 people signed up, and we hope to have over 100,000 participate," Bernstein says.
The free event is open to the public, and will also be livestreamed on the Chopra Center's website, so anyone can log into the seven-minute meditation from their bedroom, yoga studio, or even from the office. Plus, Chopra and Bernstein will provide tips on meditating, so don't worry if you've never tried it before. (For further guidance, check out Bernstein's Begginer's Guide to Meditation.) 
While breaking a world record with thousands of other people may not seem exactly zen-like, Bernstein sees it a major opportunity for global healing, and says there's a broader purpose behind bringing people together for a shared intention. "Given what's going in the world right now, many people are feeling powerless. Connecting with others’ positive, peaceful energy is the best way to reclaim your power," she explains. "Our individual, personal experiences create a ripple effect. When more and more people begin to meditate, the world begins to vibrate at a higher frequency, and a shift can occur." 
Register here, or simply log in at noon today to participate in the event. And even if you can't join in today, you can still reap the benefits of meditation in as little as 60 seconds. "A lot of people think you need a lot of time to meditate, but even you practice one minute of stillness per day you'll experience a beautiful change in your life," says Bernstein. 
James Van Praagh is a world renowned psychic and meditation guru who has worked with religious leaders, celebrities, and politicians all over the world. Visit this website to learn more about his psychic abilities and his unique methods of self-development and meditation.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

REPOST: The Case Against Mix-and-Match Spirituality

Though today’s Americans are more accepting of diversity in cultural and religious beliefs, it seems only a select few have the patience to explore and understand the significance behind important religious rituals. This article examines the ramifications that arise when spirituality is treated like a product and commoditized.
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ASPEN, Colo.—Religious believers who hope to raise children who stay within their faith tradition face many challenges, some of them very worrisome, others less so. "It's good that in America people no longer want to murder Jews, but to marry them," Leon Wieseltier told an appreciative audience Saturday at the Aspen Ideas Festival. Fellow panelist Arsalan Iftikhar, a Muslim civil rights lawyer, saw his opening. "We hope to get there one day," he said, to slightly less comfortable laughter.  
As the panelists pondered what American faith might look like in 2024, they grappled with what keeping religious traditions alive actually requires, prompted in part by an audience member who asked, "Can I be a good Jew if I don't believe in God?" 
Wieseltier granted the possibility. 
"Can I be a good Catholic?" the man asked. 
"That's not your problem," Wieseltier said.  
Another audience member noted that while she was raised Catholic, her four children include a Buddhist, a Jew, and "two undeclareds." Alluding to research that suggests Millennials are less racist than the generations that came before them, she said, "I also like the thought that religion is evolving." Perhaps they'll survey parts of religious traditions that they like and combine them. 
"Perhaps they'll be less divisive," she said, "and change the whole face of religion in our society."That worried Wieseltier. 
"To call oneself a Muslim, a Jew, or a Catholic, what do the continuities have to be?" he asked. "You cannot simply erase the entirety of the religion that preceded you and call yourself a Jew. You can say that there is this tradition that is X,Y, and Z, interpret as you choose, state your reasons. It's a free country, this is the kind of Jew you want to be. What worries me is that the new forms will be so disconnected from the traditions that something called Judaism will survive but that the tradition in its richness may not. That is my deepest fear about my faith." 
Professor Molly Worthen, another panelist, expressed a related concern.  
"Call me old fashioned, but yes, I would say, to be a good Catholic you have to believe in God," she said. "There's a problem with the hyper-individualization of Millennial religion. The advantage of an institution is that it forces you into conversation with people you might not agree with. It forces you to grapple with a tradition that includes hard ideas. It forces you to have, for at least part of your life, a respect for authority that inculcates the sense that you have something to learn, that you're not reinventing the wheel, but that millennia have come before you. The structure of institutions, for all their evils, facilitates that. And we may be losing that." 
Wieseltier posited that it's being lost because Americans are trying to bring to their religious experience the same level of customization that they expect when shopping. "They treat their tradition as consumers–or let's say, consumers with loyalty to one store." More than other panelists, his forecast was gloomy. "On the question of what is true or false about the universe," he said, "Americans are not interested anymore."
Spiritual coach and medium James van Praagh believes that proper respect, commitment, and devotion should be given when one wishes to embrace a religious order. For more on the inner self and spirituality, subscribe to this blog.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

REPOST: Psychic Spies of the Cold War

The metaphysical and psychic phenomena have long been used for the esoteric science of 'Remote Viewing'--one of the capabilities of the trained psychics under Project Stargate, a project that was said to be created by the CIA to gather intelligence reports. The article below discusses how the military was able to harness the special faculty of the mind for the purpose of intelligence gathering.

A car rides between US tanks, in October 1961, across the famous border of the American sector in Berlin, at Checkpoint Charlie crossing point, the only one in the Berlin Wall between East (Soviet sector) and West Berlin (American sector) used only by diplomats and foreigners.
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The U.S. government’s use of trained psychics for military application has a history dating back at least a few decades.

Project Stargate was an umbrella codename for a project funded by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). It was created in response to intelligence reports that the Soviet Union was engaging in psychic research, according to the Federation of American Scientists (FAS).

Stargate, which was given several codenames between 1972 and 1995, employed “remote viewing,” a technique that uses powers of the mind to view distant scenes and individuals.

Started at the Stanford Research Institute in California in 1972, the project—originally called SCANATE, or scan by coordinate—consisted of gifted or talented individuals selected by the SRI that would be trained in psychic warfare. A minimum of 65 percent accuracy was desired, but higher levels supposedly could be reached with training.

As the project evolved through the 1970s, it was eventually combined with a pre-existing Army intelligence program called project “grill flame” in 1979. Operating out of Fort Meade, Md., the new group consisted of both soldiers and civilians who were considered to be psychically gifted.

By 1983, the program expanded to include a set of instructions that, in theory, would allow anyone to be trained in remote viewing and produce reliable data. By 1984, the project had conducted hundreds of remote viewing experiments.

Although the reported level of success of the program varies from source to source, the program allegedly had several successful sessions including locating a Soviet nuclear testing area at Semipalatinsk in 1974 and locating a downed Soviet Tu–95 bomber within several miles of the wreckage in Africa. Special Projects Intelligence Officer Joe McMoneagle said that he left the project after receiving a Legion of Merit award for providing information on 150 targets that could not be located by other means, according to the FAS.

The project continued until the mid 1990s, at which time it suffered from a series of infrastructural flaws that led to its evaluation by the American Institute for Research in 1995. After both positive and negative assessments were offered, the institute ultimately recommended the project’s termination.

The Stargate remote viewing program files are currently available, declassified, and stored at the National Archives and Records Administration.

James Van Praagh is an internationally renowned psychic and best-selling author of spiritual books such as Reaching to Heaven, Healing Grief, Heaven and Earth, Looking Beyond, Meditations, and Ghosts Among Us. He travels the world to share his abilities and to teach about meditation, spiritual empowerment, and emotional healing. View his schedule of upcoming seminars, events, and weekend retreats on this website.