If something can’t be explained by ordinary reality, it shows the need for adding souls. Evidence includes personal experiences, verified reports, and reproducible experiments.
Personal experiences are convincing when you have them. They may give us new information or confirm something we expect to happen. While the experience is real to the person who has it, a skeptical person can say it was imagined or made up. Personal experiences only count when almost everyone has them. Near death experiences, for example, have been accepted because there are so many of them.
Verified reports are better. Someone besides the person who has the experience checks out the report to see if it is true. The best cases are when the person making the report doesn’t know and the verifier is the one who checks out the case.
Reproducible experiments are the gold standard for scientific proof. In these cases, others repeat experiments to verify the original results. In most fields a verified experiment is considered proof of what was being tested. There are four kinds of experiences related to soul reality that I find compelling: connections we can measure in the physical world, continuation of souls after death and into other physical bodies, using life force, and interactions with soul reality. We’ll take a quick look at each as a way to explain the concept of evidence. Later in the book we’ll look at the details.
Connections in the Physical World
My favorite proofs of souls come from simple places. The simplest is that we often know when someone is staring at us. The stare makes us feel uneasy. It makes sense that we are able to do this. In a dangerous world, knowing that someone is looking at us is a warning. It gives us time to act before the other person can get to us. The more harmful the intent, the more likely we are to feel it.
The beauty of this skill is that it can become an experiment. In fact it has. The results show that it is almost certain that people can sense stares more often than chance results would predict. It’s not all the time, but it doesn’t have to be to prove something.
That’s how experiments work. In this case one person stares at the back of another person. Half the time they are staring. Half the time they are not. On the average the person being stared at guesses right half the time when the person is not staring. This is what you would expect by chance, so it proves nothing. However, the person being stared at guesses right six times out of ten when they are being stared at. That’s one more time than you would expect. In one experiment that’s no big deal. When the same average is seen in thousands of experiments, it means we can sense someone staring at us a little bit.
Knowing that something happened to a loved one far away is also evidence for souls. At least it is when there isn’t ordinary communication. This kind of event is usually just a report. But it can move to proof when it is reported to someone else before it’s possible for the news to travel between the two people. That used to be easy. Before telephones, there weren’t ways to report at long distances quickly. Many reports were made and verified. These days the reports are much less certain. With all our electronic connections, we know what’s happening to someone else almost before it happens.
Continuation of Souls
Anyone who has met a ghost knows a soul can continue after death of the body. A spirit that exists after the body dies can’t be explained with physical forces. Those forces say when the brain stops, the person doesn’t exist anymore.
There are many reports of encounters with ghosts. The problem with these reports is that they only happen to one person or a small group of people and they are usually impossible to verify. The concern that the person is lying always makes the reports suspect. Still, they are important evidence because they confirm something that we expect if there are souls. By themselves, they do not prove souls exist.
Better evidence comes from the reports of reincarnation. In the best of these reports a young child reports memories of a recent previous life. A researcher checks the details. A child who can describe his or her previous life is pretty good evidence for souls continuing. Physical reality says this is impossible.
It is always possible for the family to fake the report. They could find another life and teach the details to the child. The researcher tries to rule that out. The researcher’s honesty can also be an issue. Those researching non-ordinary reality are questioned much more than researcher of ordinary reality. Given the difference in rewards for dishonesty in the two realities, I’m more suspicious of ordinary reality research.
There aren’t any experiences related to the continuation of souls that are repeatable. Near death experiences come the closest. But in the end they are only verified by their similarity.
Using Life Force
Chi is described as an energy that flows throughout everything. It is one type of life force. I found it in karate. The evidence comes in two ways. One is in the interaction of two people during combat. One person sensing the intention of the other person before moves are made may demonstrate a non-physical connection. Another is similar to what we feel when we are stared at. It’s more intense when the intention to attack replaces the stare. Both of these are repeatable experiments.
Life force is also seen in energy healing. Some have to be non-ordinary, but they are usually only reports. Reproducible studies show techniques that work. Too bad they can often be explained with ordinary reality. Energy healing confirms but doesn’t prove.
Interactions with Soul Reality
Some of the other beings I want to look at in this book are angels, fairies, and nature spirits. Encounters with other beings are a lot like encounters with ghosts. It’s usually one person or a few people and not repeatable. Someone who has the experience is usually pretty sure it is real.
However, some people who have had these experiences offer the excellent advice that you should be wary of the experience. Humans have filters that can garble what we see and hear in the otherworld.
A few reproducible experiments have been tried with other beings. The usual model is for two humans to ask questions of the same non-ordinary being. Answers are compared. There have been some interesting similarities, but I haven’t seen anything that seems like proof to me.
It’s not clear that there ever will be totally convincing results. People mishear otherworld beings. Otherworld beings shape their message for the person. Too many are also known to be tricksters who would prefer to remain mysterious. Others probably have better things to do. These experiences can confirm our thoughts and suggest more things to study. We can’t expect proof here.
The one place where there is some evidence is in shamanistic practice. The soul healing that is part of this work can make profound changes in a person’s life. I have seen people change as a result of this work. Is it possible to measure the change? Maybe. I haven’t found it yet as a scientific study.
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