Metaphysical Energies: The Last Taboo? – Dr Naomi Wolf 6/12/23


I was talking to my new friend Ora Nadrich, the gifted author of books about mindfulness and spirituality. We were mulling over the disturbing state of the world. Given that she is at home in the more mystical realms, I let down my guard.

“I feel,” I blurted out, “as if in the last few years the physical world has almost melted away, and that the institutions we thought were permanent have visibly collapsed; and now what has emerged into obvious, palpable form are primarily positive and negative energies.”

I try never to share these kinds of observations with anyone but close friends, and only with those who I know are open to such discussions.

I thought she would look at me as if I had two heads.

But Ora said something like, “Exactly.”

We delved into how we both sensed that the world itself — not just history, not just human behavior — but the planet; the dimension in which we found ourselves; time and space themselves, and our relationship to them — felt to us as if they had somehow changed in the last three years or so; leaving us — us humans — uprooted; trying to make a home again, in a place that was now unfamiliar and new; a place that was shifting; one that was hard to navigate or to understand.

Ora Nadrich embraces the change, and is ready for a new world. Many people in the spirituality community feel that the previous world (pre-2020) was deeply corrupt anyway — the corruption was just better disguised and better dressed — and that it is bracing to see at last the unmediated nakedness of all that was wrong, so that change can come about quickly in the old world passing away and the building of the new.

I wish I had her courage.

But I am uneasy. I feel as if my whole life I have lived on dry land and now I have somehow stepped onto a lurching boat, and I do not yet know our destination.

Here is calm Ora:

“There are many paths on this journey of awakening, and each day if we allow ourselves to “receive” — Kabbalah means “reception”; the Kabbalist is a “receiver” of mysticism, of “things we cannot see” – each path will take us closer to better understanding the mystery of life.

For those who look deeply into the mystery, I feel we shouldn’t be concerned with those whose perception does not contain the “invisible” — that which they cannot see. As it is now, we have come to know that there are those who “see” what is going on, and those who don’t.

As I said in my book, Time to Awaken, we are living in a parallel universe, so perhaps there are the “seers of the invisible” and those who cannot see what is not visible to them because they can only live in the visible realm, and even in that realm, there is so much they still do not see.”

When I read in Ora’s book Time to Awaken that she believed we as humans on the planet were living in parallel realities, this had the shock of verisimilitude for me, though it was a pretty startling notion.

How else could some millions or billions of people see so clearly the abyss of lies, coercion and tyranny of the past three years, and other millions or billions saw nothing but the snooze-worthy status quo?

How is it that we keep speaking directly past one another? We do seem to be in different realities.

Her “sliding doors” proposition actually resonated.

Or if not two dimensions, what if humanity is now divided into two modes of perception, which is — even trippier — essentially the same as our inhabiting two worlds?

And even beyond that alarmingly intriguing hypothetical, there is the possibility of a major metaphysical shift overall, of some still-to-be-understood kind.

I think it is actually really possible that the world has indeed changed and shifted in some mysterious way, such that we are blinking into new awareness in a time in which more than ever before, “[…] we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places”. [Ephesians 6:12; KJV]

I think we need to break the taboo, in our educated, Western discourse, against talking about metaphysical energies, both positive and malevolent.

I believe the world has indeed changed — recently — in such as way that the taboo against such discussions is disempowering to us.

The idea of the world in which humans find themselves, changes energetically – -that there are palpably different “ages” that bring with them different qualities — is familiar to all great civilizations except our own, post-Enlightenment, mechanistic, Newtonian culture.

The Vedic world believes that time brought humans, about 5000 years ago, into Kali Yuga; that we are in the middle of “the era of the demon” — of vice and darkness, of conflict and hypocrisy. [,the%20end%20of%20Dwapara%20Yuga.&text=LEARN%20MORE%3A%20The%20Puranas%20provide,our%20guide%20to%20Vedic%20Cosmology.] Astrologers, whose art derives from Mesopotamia, India and China, believe that we entered the Age of Pisces about 2000 years ago, and that in the next few hundred years (there is debate about just when) we are due to enter a golden age, the Age of Aquarius. []. The Aztecs, for their part, believed that there were four Ages of Creation, each lit by a different sun [,had%20existed%20before%20the%20present.&text=One%20sixteenth%2Dcentury%20source%20reports,364%20years%2C%20and%20312%20years.&text=Each%20of%20these%20previous%20Ages,lit%20by%20a%20different%20sun].

We could go on and on. The bottom line is that other civilizations have seen this planet and its environs and humans themselves in relation to their planet and era, as being always in a state of existential flux. It is only our post-Copernican world view here in the West that, anomalously among cultures, insists that we inhabit a stable, measurable planet.

But might physical reality itself be subject, as most other cultures have always believed, to era-level change?

Our Western modern culture insists that only phenomena that we can see and explain are real, and that human perception must be contiguous and must universally be the same.

But what if that is not true?

I’ve always been intrigued — as have many scholars of the Greek — with Homer’s description in the Odyssey of a “wine-dark sea.” (Homer, Odyssey, 1:178: “And now have I put in here, as thou seest, with ship and crew, while sailing over the wine-dark sea to men of strange speech […]”. Scholars have wondered if the ancient Greeks actually did not perceive color the way we do.

Could people have actually seen differently than we do, in former times?

Christopher Hall, in Language and Visual Perception, points out: “One of the first people to seriously study Homer’s use of color was the 19th-century classics scholar and British Prime Minister William Gladstone. In 1858, Gladstone published a seminal 1,700-page study of Homer’s epic poetry, which included a 30-page statistical analysis of Homer’s use of color. Gladstone notes that, compared to modern writers, Homer rarely mentions color, and what is mentioned is mostly limited to shades of black and white, with red, yellow, and green making only occasional appearances. Black is mentioned almost 200 times, white about 100. Red is mentioned fewer than 15 times, and yellow and green fewer than 10. Moreover, Homer’s descriptions of color can be, at times, completely bizarre: skies the color of bronze, stars are an iron or copper hue, sheep wool and ox skin appear purple, horses and lions are red, and honey glows green. Most conspicuous, however, Gladstone noted the complete absence of the color blue. Nothing is ever described as “blue.”’ [].

Cognitive scientists are confirming that this different color palette could be a real thing, and caused by differences in language practices: they are finding that if a culture does not have language to describe a thing, the brain does not perceive it as clearly, or sometimes not at all: In “Effects of Language on Visual Perception”, Gary Lupyan, Rasha Rahman, Lera Boroditsky, and Andy Clark find that: “Effects of language on perception can be observed both in higher-level processes such as recognition and in lower-level processes such as discrimination and detection. A consistent finding is that language causes us to perceive in a more categorical way. [Italics mine] Rather than being fringe or exotic, as they are sometimes portrayed, we discuss how effects of language on perception naturally arise from the interactive and predictive nature of perception.”

So – could humans have gained over time different ways of seeing, through the development of new languages involving new layers of distinction? The cognitive sciences conclude that this is certainly possible….

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