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The Presence of Other Worlds In Psychotherapy and Healing - Roger Woolger

An earlier version of this paper was first presented to the Beyond the Brain Conference, held at St. John’s College, Cambridge University, England, August, 1999. It was later published in its current form in Thinking Beyond the Brain, edited by David Lorimer, Floris Books, Edingburgh, 2001.

A good artist lets his intuition lead him wherever it wants A good scientist has freed himself of concepts and keeps his mind open to what is Lao-Tzu Tao Te King (transl. Mitchell) [14] Consciousness creates reality

Amit Goswami The Self-Aware Universe


To my mind a major culprit behind our enthralment to the philosophy of materialism is the tiny little word “in”. From my somewhat labored examples it may now be clear how pervasively this innocent little word deceptively conceals a spatial metaphor that betrays its true allegiance to the materialist dogma. The unexamined use of the word “in” sadly restricts much neurological research and has taken on the status of a scientific myth about mind, energy and spirit, a myth in the Jungian sense of “something which is believed everywhere and by everyone”

For when we are talking about spirit as energy or energy as consciousness, even though we fully believe that these phenomena belong to a subtle or non-physical realm we tend to imagine them “in” the brain or flowing “through” our energy fields unaware that these are metaphors and not literal, which is to say, empirical truths. It may be clearer when we say something like “I know it in my heart” or “I feel it in my gut”. For even though our energy fields seem to have reactions that correspond to those parts of the body we still seem to realize that the emotions are not literally stored “in” these places like glucose or protoplasm. Consider for example, the charming saying: “You will never find your heart in a temple unless you find the temple in your heart.” It would be hard to mistake this for anything other than a metaphor. We don’t go to a cardiologist to find the temple in our heart or to an archaeologist to find our heart in a temple! Yet as soon as we start to talk of memories “stored in the brain” our metaphorical consciousness suddenly vanishes.


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