Friday, July 14, 2006

Edgar Cayce in Virginia Beach

One of the places I really wanted to see in Virginia Beach was Edgar Cayce’s A.R.E. – the Association for Research and Enlightenment. I didn’t know much about him other than that he was a psychic and a bit of a controversial figure at the turn of the twentieth century.

The story goes that Cayce received visitations from an angel, and began having dreams that corresponded with things that were happening in reality. It seems Cayce came from a Christian background, for awhile he was leery about what was happening. Eventually he embraced his gift, and started using it to help people. Besides dealing with specific requests from individuals seeking his help, he also gave trance “readings” on topics as diverse as proper diet, the power of dreams, and the hidden histories of ancient civilizations. He dictated these revelations to his wife and other assistants, and they were compiled into a huge body of literature. He went on to form his own hospital based upon holistic medical practices such as massage and nutrition, and is rightly given credit for being on the vanguard of such practices.

Every weekday, the visitor’s center at the Cayce Institute offers a free lecture to anyone who has enough interest to show up. I got to attend two of these on successive days.

The first was about dreams, and how to use them as a tool for self-actualization. The woman who talked seemed fairly grounded as she talked of chakras, Kundalini, glands, dream journals, and Christ consciousness. I had the feeling she was keeping it kind of basic, for the benefit of the uninitiated. Once in awhile I would catch an allusion that seemed to be code for those audience members who were “in the know”. There were also some thinly veiled jabs at the church and other power structures. But for the most part she was merging a bunch of information that, broken up into disparate bits, consisted of verified facts and common sense. This seemed to add validity to her entire presentation… at least for me… enough to make me return for more.

Today’s topic was “Ancient Civilizations”, and it required a good sight more suspension of disbelief. The speaker told us of the long lost civilizations of Atlantis and Lemuria. Lemuria (also known as “Mu”, so I’m told) was a collection of scattered islands in the Pacific Ocean. The inhabitants of the culture were pacifistic and skilled in visual representation. They were also blessed with excellent maritime skills. These folks were very in touch with their spirituality, and foretold their own destruction… therefore they were able to disperse to places as far-flung as Samoa, Hawaii, Tahiti, Tibet and South America. That’s why all these places have similar cultural attributes! (I’m not certain what those attributes are.)

Atlantis (called by Cayce’s people “Og”) was a militaristic, technology- savvy, materialistic culture. Cayce tells us that they powered flying vehicles with crystal power! Being an imperialistic society, they weren’t as spiritually attuned as the Lemurians, and therefore got wiped out all at once. But before they did, they used genetic engineering to create a slave class that was a hybrid of humans and animals. Cayce imaginatively called these slaves “things”. Here I lose the thread a bit… but somehow two groups of priests end up in Egypt fighting for control and interbreeding with the natives. The Children of the Law of One defeat the Sons of Belial, and usher Egypt into a golden age. They ingeniously use their crystal power to levitate stones and build the pyramids. If we can only find the Hall of Records… located by Cayce’s account between the Sphinx and some other place… then we to can harness age-old powers to advance the human race once again. As our guide informed us, we haven’t been able to locate the papers- not through any error in Cayce’s “readings”, but simply because we “are not yet ready”.

Maybe you too, dear reader, can get in touch with A.R.E. and solve these mysteries before IT’S TOO LATE.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a feeling you'd enjoy this place. I could have spent a couple of days there exploring, but then I wasn't alone on my visit and sometimes a person has to compromise. For anyone visiting the area with even the slightest interest in the paranormal (or just plain different), this is a must-see opportunity to take in something other than the usual humdrum of guidebook sightseeing.

7:01 AM  
Blogger Merge Divide said...

I dug it. Anytime I have an opportunity to explore an alternative perspective (especially if it has been accused of being cult-like), I'm gonna be into it.

10:36 AM  
Anonymous DeeA2Z said...

I believe you've read The Celestine Prophesy, which I recommended to you years ago. As I recall, you were rather vague in your comments about it to me, although I got the distinct impression you thought it was nothing "to write home about". That's ok; the book is, after all, fictionalized. I suppose given that small bit of information, I was rather surprised at your interest in Cayce. Given the last sentence in your posting, I'm not entirely convinced you took what you learned quite seriously...but I could be wrong.

You might be surprised if you knew of some experiences among your own family members that fall into "alternative perspective", as you call it. Just goes to show that everyone has so many layers, even people you think you "know".

4:09 PM  
Blogger Merge Divide said...

As far as Celestine Prophecies is concerned, I was never very impressed. It's been a long time since I read it, but remember finding it a bit cliche and oversimplistic. I had already encountered many of its ideas, so it didn't leave me changed. Having said that, I am (like I said above) always interested in hearing new perspectives. I'd love to hear stories such as you suggest exist.

11:27 PM  

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