The Normalcy of Paranormal Experience

Newtown, New World

It is December 21st, 2012, day of the winter solstice, signifier of transformation. This is not the end of the world, it is the end of a world. Endings make way for beginnings in all facets of life, whether or not we are meant to know the purpose.

It is barely a week since our country was struck by catastrophe. The country mourns, the President consoles, a town cries in pain, and innocence feels lost.

Newtown, Connecticut, a small, quiet New England town of warm community, has become the target of suffering, anger, political debate, and media frenzy following the apparently senseless murder of twenty children and seven adults. 

The assailant, whether called the harbinger of evil, the embodiment of dangerous mental disability, or some heinous collision of both, has forced us all to our knees, groping for any knowledge of the reason behind this earth-shattering disaster. 

Immediately the questions abound, bringing to light the general dichotomy of human experience: Physical / Spiritual. For those of us paranormalytes, our spiritual life is not outside the realm of normal life. I refer to the spiritual as the paranormal as well.

Concrete questions: (taking on several perspectives)

Why are guns accessible to this dangerous degree?
Why do people blame guns and not only the people involved?
Why aren’t the mentally ill given better treatment?
Why don’t we have stronger security?
Why did the gunman murder children?

Paranormal/Spiritual questions:

Why here? 
Why now? 
Why us?
How could God, if there is God, allow this to happen?
How can people be psychic and not have predicted this?

All of us — theologian, scientist, doctor, philosopher, etc. — can speculate these answers for as long as we live, and our continuing to do so is intrinsic to our experience of life on earth.

But I would like to grapple with this outlier, this moment, this tragedy — from a “paranormal” standpoint. 

My main question is:  How can we use this event and those lost physical lives as a bridge to greater understanding of our evolution as human beings?

As far as the universe is concerned, there is nothing paranormal about physical death. It is the point at which our body ceases to function, our brain no longer transmits, our heart no longer beats. In order to value life, we must accept mortality, regardless of the emotional pain it inflicts on our souls and our bodies.

The universe regards babies, children, young adults, and older adults the same way. We are all souls existing in different forms — this is why some 15-year-olds are called “old souls” and some 75-year-olds still behave like children. It is all about evolution, but at a deeper level than the physical. As our souls evolve through our lives, the journey we take becomes less about how “long” each life was, but the effect that it had on our souls and the souls of those we influence.

Humans have an impossible time accepting death, especially in collective forms: natural disasters, transportation disasters, mass illness, genocide.

These group death experiences are even more unfathomable, because we are meant to understand our journeys as individual to us. By accepting that a large number of people were “meant to die” at the same time, we must accept that despite their differences they were meant to share that fate. How can it be that a 2-year-old boy from China should have his physical path end on a plane with a 92-year-old woman from Tennessee?

But that is where the grand scheme of the universe comes into play. While our souls ARE destined for individual paths, we must go through different death experiences at different points in our evolution. Only by understanding our physical journeys on earth in the context of our greater spiritual journey through the universe, can we fully comprehend the enormity of our presence here, and the power of our influence.

To get back to the question of “psychic” ability: How can an experience of such horrific tragedy be reconciled in a mental framework that allows for psychics and mediums who could have “predicted” it to exist?

Psychics are not supposed to “know” everything. But as all of us share psychic ability, it is a question of being receptive and practicing to gain deeper insights. Given the level to which psychics are delegitimized in our culture, even if a nearby psychic had called in to the school and reported a concern — the chance their impression would be taken seriously is almost non-existent.

The mainstream belief is that there is no scientific proof of psychic energy, whether or not this is the case. Scientists have uncovered staggering statistics that suggests the presence of psi, but the majority of the world is not ready to accept it.

But what if the children, the teachers, the parents were taught to meditate, to channel energy, to expect precognition (knowledge of a “future” event) as a side effect of mindfulness. It is possible there may have been a better sense of impending danger in Newtown.

And what of the lucid moment, the respite from her grief, when one of the Newtown mothers observes an apparition of her beloved child at the kitchen table, or the window, or the foot of her bed?

Shall we victimize her further by denying her experience, her claim, by invalidating it as a mere delusion of sorrow. Wishful thinking, perhaps? She will be prescribed a pretty pill, an external agent to dull her. We help bury her pain as we have helped bury her child, and no one gets any wiser.

Psychics are messengers who have spent the ages being killed for their news. People love to shoot the messenger. Ancient texts speak of them as prophets; more recent texts have adopted subtler language: innovator, revolutionary, genius. What was once understood as divine is now understood as opportunism. A psychic does not deliver words of light; he primes for pay because he is ‘right.’ Moses, Jesus, Mohammed, or Buddha today would be a successful eccentric, a website icon, a NY Times Bestseller, a commodity, an empowered individual bringing people together for reasons of faith and love that the current majority would call “stupid” or “uninformed” or, perhaps, the worst development yet, “crazy.”

Crazy remains the word of our day to explain away the people who confuse us. It is a word of misunderstanding, a word of offense, of defense, a word of pain. The parents, relatives, and friends of the mentally disabled do not all believe their loved one is a threat to society. But how do we promote understanding of the difference? In response to the Newton tragedy, politicians have sparked new debate in gun control, Facebook has been overrun with colliding comments, and sales of bulletproof bookbags have skyrocketed. There needs to be a grander shift, the shift this year is supposed to bring, according to several ancient cultures.

Just as Newton felt awe at the gravity forced into his consciousness through experience, Newtown faces a gravity unknown to places whose children are there to carry on the future.