Bob Monroe’s Journey

The book that became Muddy Tracks started out as Living In Monroe’s New World, but my editor thought that it hurt the book to split the focus between my own experiences and Monroe’s. I still don’t know if I was right to listen, but I did.

It occurred to me this morning that this might be the place and time to publish (as it were) one of the chapters that didn’t make it into the final version of Muddy Tracks. I called this chapter “Monroe’s Journey.” I began by asking my friends for assistance, as usual.

[April 20] My friends, my assumption is that now we move further into Monroe’s world-view as I deduce it from his books. Why this now, rather than later after I give my experiences in the Lifeline programs? What are we after, here? (And don’t think I don’t hear you prompting me to ask just these questions.)
We smile. Nothing smooths teamwork like a prolonged common task. We know that sounds self-evident. As to why Monroe’s views now, remember that this book is meant not, primarily, as a record of your experiences (or of Monroe’s, for that matter) but as a series of promptings that will be useful for the reader. The alternation is one way, but only one way, of grounding Monroe’s theory (or your understanding of Monroe’s theory, put it that way) and your experiences (or your understanding of the reality behind your experiences). The challenge in absorbing anything truly new is to avoid putting different parts in different mental boxes that are never again intermingled. Thought is intermingling. Experience is intermingling. Anything real in physical-matter-reality is intermingled, and the more thoroughly, the better. Analysis may require the separation of what is intermingled, but absorption, assimilation, requires intermingling, and the more thoroughly, the better.

In the course of writing this book, I re-read Bob Monroe’s three books all at the same time, reading each one from front to back, but alternating as I felt so moved; a few chapters in one, a chapter in a second, a couple of chapters in the third. Perhaps I am too suspicious (though experience suggests otherwise!) but I thought I felt “their” guiding touch as I felt moved to jump from iceberg to iceberg, as it were. In any case, at the end of the week I was astonished how much more I knew about Monroe, and about his thought and experience and speculations and conclusions, than I had a few days before. I was chagrined, too, that I had had access to Bob Monroe for half a dozen years and hadn’t formulated the questions that puzzle me now, because I hadn’t read the books that thoroughly then. And why didn’t I? Why didn’t I even think to re-read his books before taking Gateway? Or after returning from Gateway? My life is a puzzle to me.
I can only conclude that my not discussing these matters with him was on somebody’s priority list Upstairs. I wonder why. Maybe conversations would have dissipated the steam that drives this book. I don’t know. The only real conversation I ever had with him on his books came right after I read Ultimate Journey, when I called to congratulate him and thank him for the work he had done. In the course of that conversation I stated my understanding of “the way things are” and he agreed that he and I understood things the same way. I find that tremendously comforting now. It takes away some of the anxiety that must always accompany the task of explaining another person’s thought when that person is unable to defend himself.
In chapter two, I gave a bare-bones outline of what happened to bring Monroe to start exploring, and there’s no need to elaborate on that outline. His books will not be out of print in our lifetimes. I also sketched his wave-frequency theory of reality: He saw reality as an infinity of worlds operating at different frequencies, separated and sifted by — and only by — those frequencies. To change frequencies is to change the parts of reality that are perceived. If you skimmed that short section, I suggest that you re-read it, for if you do not understand this theory, you cannot understand how he made sense of what he experienced in what he first called Locale II. But you needn’t understand it in the way that a scientist would (I certainly don’t) to get the gist of it; and that gist, that “feel,” is all we need.
But bear in mind, what we are trying to understand is a translation of a translation of a translation. In the foreword to the paperback edition of Journeys Out of the Body, Monroe said that once he let the whole self drive, with his present consciousness going along for the ride, he found himself in “experience and exploration far beyond my ability to conceive of, most of it an apparent educational program that I am absorbing bit by bit.” Which, he said in Far Journeys, presents a problem: though he learned a lot in what he called sleeper’s class, “I have been unable to relate the vast majority of such information in any way to life here on time-space earth.” That statement ought to give pause to any reader who considers the amount that Monroe did bring back. [FJ-92] And it ought to caution us against being too sure (a) that what he was able to find a way to say was not distorted by what he was not able to say, and (b) that we really understand even what he did say. But that’s the risk that always attaches to translations of translations of translations. So let’s go a little farther into Monroe’s world-view, beginning with a very brief summary of his books.
Journeys Out of the Body, originally published in 1971, comprises an introduction, 21 chapters, and an Epilogue. The introduction by Charles Tart puts OBEs — and Monroe as reporter — into perspective. There follow chapters on what happened and how he learned to deal with it, including his search among what he called the psychic underground. Then he discusses his experiences by theme, starting with descriptions of what he called Locale I (“The Here-Now”), Locale II (“Infinity, Eternity”), and Locale III (“Reverse Image”).
He discusses his first contacts with others after their deaths, and curious experiences that he couldn’t get a handle on. He describes some actions of his helpers, before he knew them, talks of nonhuman intelligences, precognitions, and various things defying classification. He discusses six properties of The Second Body that he has observed; talks of Mind and Supermind (as distinct from dreaming), and courageously discusses sexuality in the second state. He offers a two-part how-to, then an Analysis of Events (searching for patterns) and Statistical Classification. There follows a chapter called “Inconclusive,” which, had it come first, would have changed the tone of the book (and probably the reaction the book elicited) entirely. Finally comes a chapter containing four explosive premises. An interesting Epilogue is Monroe’s Personality profile as developed at the VA Hospital in Topeka, Kansas.
Far Journeys (my favorite of Monroe’s trilogy) was originally published in 1985 and comprises 16 chapters, with a Prologue and an End game. It begins with an analogy that asks: How do you help your friend learn to deal with the world beyond death? It moves smoothly through Near Reaches, discussing strange things that happened, talking about the development of Hemi-Sync as a whole-brain tool, and moving on to discuss Gateway and the Explorer Team’s dealings with nonphysical intelligences.
After a segue on the development and use of NVC, we come to Far Reaches, fully three-quarters of the book. Here he describes his first experiences with his total Self driving; his meeting with INSPEC and his adventures in learning from INSPEC. He meets BB and they set out to rescue AA, Monroe gets the rote on Loosh, and later gets INSPEC’s view of the rote. He tries to give BB “One Easy Lesson” on what life is like, and has to leave him. He is given a vision of a probable future in which BB re-appears and his significance to Monroe becomes clear. Finally, there is a description of The Gathering, and a long, fascinating schematic outline generalizing what he has learned, a schematic which well repays careful reading.
Ultimate Journey, originally published in 1994, is Monroe’s analysis of human existence. First, he summarizes his search; talks of INSPEC and Home (KT95); describes the far past, and tells of nonphysical intelligences he met. He gives a summary of life on earth; of human minds; of the human brain and of our animal ancestry, and provides a chapter on training for whole-brain activity.
Then comes the story of the first retrievals that came his way, and his awakening to who he was at many levels. He describes how he met inner guidance and how he learned how much more than his physical body he was. He describes H Band noise and M Field interaction, and who he really is, including his relationship to INSPEC. He describes a long trip all the way to “the emitter” that establishes and maintains physical-matter reality. (This was for me the emotional peak of the book, though tastes will differ.) He shows that we are one, and that we are re-uniting, and he talks about the park in Focus 27 and the Lifeline program. The final chapter is a tribute to his wife Nancy, crediting her for her many contributions to his work and wondering how he would live without her. There is a wealth of information in these books. There is in fact a world-view that may lead you to explorations that will change your life.

.2.

The central portion of Far Journeys is Monroe’s parable of BB. Or is it a parable? Maybe it’s straight reportage. Let’s take it as journalism rather than as creative writing, bearing in mind what he told us from the beginning: translation from NVC to words aids intelligibility at the cost of reducing accuracy.
Chapter 10 of Far Journeys, “Newfound Friend,” tells how Monroe was accosted one day, out of body, by a being he identified as BB, who had mistaken Monroe’s Ident (his characteristic vibration) for that of his friend AA. Turns out AA and BB had been with a “tour group” that stopped by the Time-Space Illusion (which is where we live, if you didn’t recognize it), and AA decided he wanted to experience TSI’s chaotic but powerful H Band energy.
In Ultimate Journey, Monroe called H Band noise the peak of uncontrolled thought that emanates from all living forms on Earth, particularly humans. If you consider it as truly all, even in the current time frame, you get a better idea of the magnitude of this disorganized, cacophonous mass of messy energy. The amplitude of each segment of the band is determined by the emotion involved in the thought. Yet our civilization does not even recognize that the H Band exists.
My impression is that it contains not only current time thought patterns, but all that ever existed. They are continuous and simultaneous, and it may be that the older radiation is layered over so all one perceives is the current emission.
To study it objectively, if one is so foolhardy as to want to do so, all one needs do is move to that state of disassociation just beyond the last vestiges of any direct Earth-related Human Mind activity in the nonphysical There.
He says H Band noise sounds like a mob screaming in many tongues. [UJ-17] H Band noise suffuses our reality, and is both the product and the proximate cause of much of our difficulty in relating to the greater reality around us. (It makes me think of C.S. Lewis’ book Out of the Silent Planet, which, though written from a very different mind-set, makes somewhat the same point.)
But AA wasn’t worried about the cacophony; he was entranced at the sheer volume of energy. He signed up to take a turn in the Time-Space Illusion. When he didn’t come back in a reasonable time, the Entry Director (“Ed”! There’s Monroe and his playful acronyms again) told BB that AA was probably caught in the system. He was clearly a Repeater, wanting to experience another life, and another.
For Monroe’s implicit cosmology in a nutshell, read Chapter 10 of Far Journeys, in which he describes the agreement AA signs to enter TSI. Herein is the purpose of this life (TSI is a school for compressed learning); the ground-rules (our pre-entry memories are temporarily blanked on entry, and as long as we live, we agree that time-space exists) and the conditions and payoff (free will and consciousness are required and guaranteed).
Monroe says that as a first-timer, AA met four individuals entering TSI for reasons other than curiosity. I take it that this was Monroe’s way of outlining the motives that may lead us (perhaps I should say, may have led us) into the TSI:
1) One was sent. As Monroe put it, “assigned HSTI-FES for retraining, don’t come back until you’re better.”
2) One was coming in to conduct an experiment from within.
3) One apparently had been a pet animal on earth, and was graduating to first-time human status.
4) One was a reformer, coming in trying to “do something” about the TSI system as it exists. [FJ-136-140]
After a while BB caught up with AA, and AA “ran him the rote” of what had happened in his first lifetime in the TSI. And then AA was gone again, back into the physical, anxious for more experience. Ed told BB that AA would likely get more and more involved in the human experience, dropping down a ring at a time until he reached the bottom. And then what would happen? “They stay at the bottom and don’t come back, or they begin to work their way back up. Most of ’em stay at the bottom.” [FJ-124-143]
So there was BB, waiting. “Before him was the blue-green planet, indistinct. Around the planet were rings of haze, gigantic thick rings, of indeterminate number. Demarcation between them was vague as wisps and tendrils reached from one to the other. Except the ring nearly touching the planet itself. It appeared isolated. With this exception, the others were flowing rapidly through portals in the Entry Station. No, there was one more, on the outer edge. It came nowhere near the Station. Very thin.” What’s more, the M Band noise was greatest closest to the planet, and thinned out with distance, and the bands themselves were composed of innumerable living forms. FJ- 130-131
These bands, these gigantic thick rings of haze, Monroe later named the Belief System territories, which of course he promptly shortened to BS territories. (And I laugh as I remember a discussion during a Lifeline debriefing in which a friend of mine from Germany asked, innocently and earnestly, “And this BS territories — this is `bullshit’?” It was all the funnier in that we all suspected that this was exactly what Monroe was saying, tongue in cheek.) These rings, BB and Monroe learned, were composed of discarnate souls, clustered by vibration, with their vibration being determined more or less by what they believed. In a larger sense, by what they were. As I put it now, “souls of a feather, flock together.”
I find it riveting that Emanuel Swedenborg, in Heaven and Hell, described the same thing! To paraphrase his thought into modern secular English, Swedenborg, in the 1700s, said that there are innumerable separate heavens and hells, each composed of souls of a given level of being, who could not stand to be with those of a different vibration.
Given that Swedenborg, like Monroe, obtained this information in a years-long series of visions; given that he as an eminent scientist was a trained observer and recorder (his mind, in fact, in some ways seems curiously like Monroe’s); given that Swedenborg’s orientation and interpretation was strictly Christian as Monroe’s was very much not Christian — given all this, the fact that their descriptions match so closely tells me that they were perceiving much the same thing, interpreting it through the filter we each bring to our experience. In fact, at one point Monroe describes his friend INSPEC as “a brightly glowing figure that some people would interpret as a god, an angel, or at the very least some extraterrestrial.” [UJ-19]
I don’t see how this conclusion can be avoided: This experience isn’t something either Monroe or Swedenborg was making up. Swedenborg’s visions are heavily laden with theological statements and implications which meet no corresponding mental buckets in myself, and certainly would have met none in Monroe’s mind. Yet I remind myself that Swedenborg’s experience of these visions went on longer than Monroe’s, and cannot be safely assumed to be erroneous in the areas in which his experiences seem to contradict Monroe’s.
It is unsafe particularly because of inexplicable chapter eight of Journeys Out of the Body. There Monroe said:
To date, in twelve years of non-physical activities, I find no evidence to substantiate the biblical notion of God and afterlife in a place called heaven. Perhaps I have found it and simply haven’t recognized it. It is quite possible…. On the other hand, much of what I have encountered could be some basics which have been distorted through the years. [JOOB-116]
And yet, six pages later, he reported (but could make no sense of) “a very unusual event” in Locale II that, he said, “periodically occurs. It makes no different where in Locale II, the event is the same.”
In the midst of normal activity…there is a distant Signal, almost like heraldic trumpets. Everyone takes the Signal calmly…It is the signal that He (or They) is coming through His Kingdom.
There is no awestruck prostration or falling down on one’s knees. Rather, the attitude is most matter-of-fact….
At the Signal, each living thing lies down…to form a road over which He can travel…. There is no movement, not even thought, as He passes by….
In the several times that I have experienced this, I lay down with the others. At the time, the thought of doing otherwise was inconceivable…. As He passes, there is a…feeling of radiant, irresistible living force of ultimate power that peaks overhead and fades in the distance….
After His passing, everyone gets up again and resumes their activities….
Is this God? Or God’s son? Or His representative? [JOOB-122-123]
And he immediately follows that report with another, equally anomalous.
Three times I have “gone” to a place that I cannot find words to describe accurately…. I am sure that this may be part of the ultimate heaven as our religions conceive it. It must also be the nirvana, the Samadhi, the supreme experience related to us by the mystics of the ages….
To me, it was a place or condition of pure peace, yet exquisite emotion…. This is where you belong. This is Home.

Most important, you are not alone. With you, beside you, interlocked in you are others…. You feel with them, like gentle waves of electricity passing between you, a completeness of love, of which all the facets you have experienced are but segments and incomplete portions….
Here, you know and easily accept the existence of the Father. Your true Father. The Father, the Creator of all that is and was. You are one of His countless creations. How or why, you do not know. This is not important. You are happy because you are in your Right Place, where you truly belong.
Each of the three times I went There, I did not return voluntarily. I came back sadly, reluctantly. Someone helped me return….
Was this Heaven? [JOOB-123-126]
The full passage from which I took the above quotations extend to the better part of four printed pages. If we didn’t know who the author was, we might have guessed at Swedenborg, or perhaps a fundamentalist Christian, rather than Bob Monroe. And, at least as far as I know, he never retracted the passage or said he had figured it out after the fact. (How I wish I had thought to ask him! And how inconceivable it is that I never thought to do so. Yet somehow whenever we were together, which wasn’t all that often, there were other things and my mind was in other places. Perhaps it is truest to say that I hadn’t really noticed.) Perhaps he was in one of the Belief System territories, who knows? Or perhaps we don’t know as much as we think we do. Perhaps some of what we know is wrong. It’s a matter for further investigation.
Further investigation, of course, is the area in which Monroe tops Swedenborg. The Swedish scientist wasn’t able to provide a way for others to duplicate his experience, and so his visions have stood alone, rather like a stone in the stream of intellectual thought and spiritual experience. The American engineer provided not only the vision, but the means to learn how to have the visions. As he put it in Ultimate Journey,
while there is nothing new about realizing that you are more than your physical body, you now have a means of proving it to yourself…. Think how such knowledge–not belief or faith–would affect your own life pattern; the knowledge that you are indeed more than your physical body, that you do indeed survive physical death. [UJ-9-14]
Chapter 11 continues the story. INSPEC gives Monroe an “alignment and balance” in the form of a scenario involving the supposed death of his dog Steamboat, to teach him how to deal constructively with the emotion involved. Then he is told: “Now you can move to your friend from the other system. He is lost. He will need your help.” He is told that it is important that he help BB. In fact, INSPEC says, they were responsible for the two meeting. “We interrupted your signal so you would perceive him.”
So Monroe found BB and followed him as he descended ring after ring, looking for his friend AA. First, through the outer ring, the first-timer and last-timer ring. Monroe says that last-timers who knowingly were about to make their final recycle, gave off a radiation that was unforgettable–tremendous vital power that seemed totally under control. Within that strength were all of the values and ideal that humans hold important … something learned from being human. Most important, all under control, all a cooperating, melding part of the whole. They were completely open.
(He says last-timers choose inconspicuous roles on their final time, even though part of their vitality leaks through. He said he tried once to handle a percept of the experience that had made them, and it was too much to handle. “I returned to the physical and was wistful for days thereafter.”) [FJ-147-148]
Of the various belief-system levels, Monroe says:
You could spend thousands of years in the rings and never explore all aspects of them.” Some parts are great, some not so great. I was told that whatever man can think of is somewhere in these rings; thus more is being added constantly as man thinks more. Also I was told some humans do spend thousands of years here, rotating in and out of physical life. Could be exciting stuff if you planned and thought it out carefully. But most of them…
Down they went, through later after layer. Near the bottom, the layer that he would later term Focus 23 contained countless forms hanging motionless. Actually, their movement was so slow as to be almost imperceptible. These were the ones who had just been released from their physical body at death and vaguely knew they had but didn’t have the rote to do much, if anything, about it…. The M Band noise was lower in this muck…. naturally, stupid. Nobody is doing much thinking at all. They’re in a state of shock from dying, having nothing to hang on to, so scared they can’t handle it, so they put their heads in the sand and try to hide…. Others are working on the effect, this end of the blockage. I’m supposed to be with those who try to help cut back the cause. [Italics added.] I don’t know which is more difficult. FJ- 152-153
Note the italicized sentence, which summarizes what I would guess to be Bob Monroe’s life purpose. Mine too, and those of several friends of mine. Cut back the cause of that blockage, and what human misery we may prevent!
Further down; last ring before the physical. Focus 22.
I knew the next ring inward. It wasn’t nice. Beyond that was physical life. The two were tightly interwoven, the thick ring just slightly out of phase with physical matter. It was the interface between one reality system and another. Even from this perspective, it was difficult for a novice to distinguish instantly the differences in the two. But I could.
That was the problem. The inhabitants of this ring couldn’t. They didn’t or couldn’t or wouldn’t realize they were no longer physical. [FJ-153]
Beyond Focus 22 is the world we recognize. Monroe and BB found AA, but AA refused to come out of TSI. Monroe said to the reader that “what small percept I had of AA” indicated that “he would drop faster than the typical First Entry.” (Maddeningly, in light of who AA turns out to be, Monroe never followed up on this cryptic statement, and I never had the wit to ask him while he was still in the body. Why would AA drop faster than typical? Perhaps it is an unimportant question, but it’s just the kind of thing that nags at me.)
Monroe followed as BB followed AA, first in a life as a twentieth-century woman, then, farther in, to a scene in which AA, a warrior in ancient times, died in an ambush. Observing that AA had gone backward in time, Monroe said, “I had always assumed repeaters lived sequential lives relative to time. Either this is not the case or AA is the rare exception.” [FJ-151] Note, Monroe was sent into those scenarios by–something. This is particularly interesting to me, as I have repeatedly experienced similar direction during two Lifeline program and afterward, as we’ll discuss. In the event, BB again was unable to convince AA to leave, and Monroe had to leave for the physical, essentially without notice. [FJ-144-156]
The next time he saw BB, he tossed BB a rote describing the earth experience as a school for human compressed learning, and in return got a rote from BB, which BB said he had gotten on the “tour.” The two rotes didn’t match. And here we get the first part of Monroe’s understanding of the origins and purpose of the Earth garden and the life that lives in it.
BB’s rote, as Monroe understood it, said that Someone created the earth as a garden, to produce something Monroe called Loosh, a by-product of the death of living creatures. Someone created sea creatures, then vegetable life, then animal life, and finally humans. For the humans, “Someone pulled forth a Piece of Himself — no other source of such substance being known or available — to act as an intensive, ultimate trigger to mobility.” Humans, what Monroe called Someone’s Fourth Crop, produced Loosh in adequate quantity and quality: and then one day Someone noticed that somehow the Fourth Crop was also creating distilled Loosh, which was theoretically impossible.
Someone learned that distilled Loosh was a by-product of human emotion, so then Someone split humans into male and female, to assure loneliness as they sought to reunite, and developed tools for the harvesting of Loosh. “The most common [tools] have been named love, friendship, family, greed, hate, pain, guilt, disease, pride, ambition, ownership, possession, sacrifice–and on a larger scale, nations, provincialism, wars, famine, religion, machines, freedom, industry, trade, to list a few.” Monroe says that after he ran that rote, he was depressed for months. “I had long realized that the God of my childhood did not exist, at least not in the form and substance envisioned by my enculturation….” he said in Far Journeys. Now he came to think of humanity as a Guernsey cow being milked without her knowledge. [FJ-157-172]
The loosh rote explained everything very neatly. Most important, it explained the purpose… [which] had long eluded me….”
“That left the INSPECS.
“Were they the gardeners, the loosh collectors, or the overseers?” [FJ-173]
When he got up his nerve, he went out to meet the INSPEC, to find out. INSPEC said the rote was real, but the translation wasn’t accurate. “The difficulty of placing earth and human values properly into perspectives and energies that are not of time and space is a factor very familiar to you.”
Monroe tried to reason it out:
Loosh was an energy generated by all organic life; the purest form comes from human activity that triggers emotion. The highest emotion is love. But how can loosh be love? It is produced when pain occurs, anger, hatred, etc. He looked deeper, and concluded that interactive experience taught us to express various emotions until finally we grew into love. And, remembering the Guernsey cow, he thought: if she didn’t give her milk away, what would she do with it? And if she didn’t produce, why would she be taken care of? He thought: neither the bull, nor water nor grass, the minerals that fed the grass, etc., produced loosh, but without them, no loosh. So, they could be considered indirect producers. They play a vital role. [FJ-172-177] This bears pondering.
INSPEC denied being Someone; denied being the keeper of the garden; denied being the gardeners. “We do not fit into any portion of the human compressed learning process.” But they did participate, they said, when needed to clear up a blockage in the flow. “Such participation ultimately serves a vital need for us.” He did not elaborate on that statement, but later knowledge makes clear INSPEC’s interest in eliminating blockages. (And, in passing, note that Monroe, who could be a very suspicious man, did not question their sincerity or accuracy.) [FJ-177]
INSPEC said Somewhere was not what we call Heaven. “It was created, as were all other systems.” Someone “is a creator who was created. You are a creator who was created.” Monroe mused, “If there had not been a Someone…”
“Humans would not exist.” [FJ-177]
By request, INSPEC took Monroe to the edge of Somewhere, which all but overwhelmed him by the power of its radiation. Then “slowly my rational and observing self began to emerge again, dominating the overwhelming emotional surge that had enveloped me.” (I would say this is a description in miniature of Bob Monroe: strong emotions fiercely held under intellectual control.) [FJ-178]
Monroe found BB again and told him that if he wanted to recognize AA when he saw him again, he’d have to get an idea about humans. BB asked for One Easy Lesson on being human. So, off they went, with Monroe as tour guide, making chapter fourteen another miniature tour of reality as Monroe saw it. [FJ-182-204]
Monroe showed BB situations demonstrating survival needs, reproduction, work — in short, what it’s like when you have forgotten that you are immortal and unlimited. Then he showed BB those who were no longer in the physical but couldn’t figure out that they weren’t; those who knew but were still focused on the physical; those who weren’t, but were locked in various belief systems. And he took BB to see Charlie, a friend of Monroe’s who knew he was dead and was having fun (in Focus 27) creating things that reminded him of things he had loved in life, like sunsets, ocean waves, etc.
Finally, he took him to “the very outer fringes of the outermost ring, where the haze was quite thin…. [Here] were the teachers, the helpers, the so-called guides of the inner rings–all on temporary but dedicated duty.” And here they found Monroe’s old “night-school” teacher, Bill. Monroe says, “It was no surprise that Bill was aware of BB and the whole sequence of events. I sometimes get the dim percept that my entire adventure, including this one, had been neatly planned from the beginning.” [FJ-201-202] This turns out to be among the understatements of all time.
Bill told BB: “Emotion is the points, the score” of the game that is life in physical matter reality.
Emotion is what makes the game seem so wild, but it is the game, the one game in which all other games are played. The others feed score to the big game in the form of emotional energy. The big game is to control and develop this emotional energy to its most effective condition, which is vaguely set by us humans as love, until we graduate. The more we score, the more fun it becomes. Most of us here–where you are now–we spend our energy going in to help other humans, however and whenever we can, to improve their score–and so have more fun.
And when BB claims not to have any sense of emotion or love energy, Bill clobbers him. “Of course you do,” he says, and asks him why he’s still waiting for AA. At this, BB closes, and Bill suggests that Monroe head back to the physical; he says BB will be fine. Monroe says he spent the weeks and months that followed thinking about the thin line that seemed to separate Bill from the INSPECS. [FJ-203-204]
Chapter 15 of Far Journeys, “Promised Plan,” delivers Monroe’s vision of a future we may come to, sometime beyond the year 3000. INSPEC flies him over the earth, travelling from Japan west around the world to the same Virginia hills where the Institute is now, though the land to the east was all long gone. (“We call it Virginia Bay for old times’ sake. Part of the ocean,” he is told shortly.) In all that long tour, no sign of human activity.
Standing on the old Virginia hills, in what looks to him like his 22-year-old body, he meets a man and a woman, and the man is — BB! After his talk with Bill, BB apparently went into the physical; by that far time in our future, he was far ahead of the version of Monroe living in our time, and was ready to emerge again from the TSI. (As to AA — in case you haven’t yet read the book, I say no more.)
As Monroe and the INSPEC had come in toward earth, Monroe had noticed that the gray and brown repeater rings were gone, and in their place was “a single flat ring…radiating and sparkling, not from the reflection of the sun, but from its own internal source.” The ring, BB now tells him, is the place where–consciously, now!–people between physical lives decide what they want to do next. BB describes some of the changes that have taken place: “Heavy cutback on the survival imprint”; “solid pre-briefing and training before entry”; no repeaters, just one-timers. [FJ-217-218]
Standing in our far future, Monroe asked, “In time-space, are there many growth patterns in consciousness similar to humans and earth?” He is told, so many you couldn’t count them, and new ones coming on line constantly. He was told that humans in that future are in contact with nonphysical energy systems, visiting them “as often as we can.” He asked, “To gather loosh?”
“No, to sow it, to plant the seeds. That lets the, uh, ray have an ident to focus on.”
He says it implied so much knowledge that it made everything else seem like monkey chatter. [FJ-226]
Ultimate Journey went over some of the same ground from a different angle. It seems to me that Ultimate Journey was motivated by one underlying belief of Monroe’s that is stated concisely within one paragraph in Chapter Six.
It may help to accept, as a belief to be converted into a Known, that we, as Human Mind-Consciousness, have both an individual and a species purpose, or purposes, for being in the Earth Life System which is not usually an understood part of our physical waking awareness. Conflict arises when the Human Mind demands an action and the Earth Life System self has trouble handling it. [UJ-75]
Monroe describes The Earth Life System as “an exquisitely self-adjusting, autotuning, self-regenerating organization of energy…. The entire system is one of polarities, yet each part is interconnected.” It is, he said,
a food chain predator system, although it is rarely accepted as such. It may appear chaotic and complex, but it is organized and operates under a few simple rules:
Grow and exist as long as you can.
Get what you need to exist.
Maintain your species by reproducing.
There are no limitations or conditions in applying these rules…. Every participant is a predator and the proces cannot be altered or changed as long as the Earth Life System exists. Survival is difficult if not impossible without predatory action. [UJ-63-64]
He points out that “The Earth Life System, for all its shortcomings, is an exquisite teaching machine.” (p.83)
Since we are human, but are something else before (and after) we are human, sometimes our physical and non-physical natures clash. INSPEC told Monroe that when his reference point changed from being human, he would cease to remain human, though he would retain his human memory and experiences.
“You have learned much. This experience is of great value as a nonhuman. It is one of the basic purposes for your sojourn.. You will draw upon it in many ways nonhuman, but your attention will be in another direction. The graduate from the human experience is very respected elsewhere.”
INSPEC added, “You will be as you were before, but the human experience will be added.” [UJ-23-24]
Monroe said that his goal had been service to humankind, until INSPEC pointed out that there are other goals. Back in the physical, Monroe thought about it. First he conceived a yearning to go Home to the place he came from. But after INSPEC accompanied him Home, Monroe learned that there’s a reason why you can’t go home again. He found a new goal: “to grow and evolve somehow into the awe-inspiring yet warm being that I happily called my INSPEC.” [UJ-31]
This was ironic, for, as he would learn, he already was a part of his INSPEC, as we saw in Monroe’s and Moen’s accounts that I cited earlier, describing what I called the larger being.

4 thoughts on “Bob Monroe’s Journey

  1. Well, my own chief regret is not having attended Gateway when I’d first intended to (back in ’91) so I could have met Monroe in the flesh. I’m not sure what, if any, questions I would have had the presence of mind to ask him, either, but you’ve mentioned at least a few good candidates. I have to admit FJ has grown on me, though I also feel a strong affinity for UJ. When I first read it it didn’t seem to hold together as a single book at all (I now think quite otherwise), and much of it seemed far-fetched or incomprehensible at the time (not at all, now). Yet FJ was the key that led me to make my first inquiries to the Institute. I don’t know what, if anything, I’d have gained by shaking his hand or listening to his talk at the Gateway, but I guess, for whatever reasons, I wasn’t supposed to have “it” after all. Still, I wonder–and puzzle. In any case, thanks, Frank, for making this chapter available. I enjoyed it immensely.

  2. On second thought I have to amend what I said above, for I actually have two regrets regarding Bob Monroe. The second has to do with the talk I gave on his philosophy at the professional division meeting in 2006. In my discussion I emphasized the importance of the attitudes and principles of inquiry that lay behind all of Monroe’s discoveries. In other words, I concentrated on the epistemology as opposed to the metaphysics, as it were. But subsequently I came to wonder why I hadn’t given as much attention to the conclusions he arrived at–his answers, as well as the questions he asked. I still don’t know why. I find it a curious omission. Perhaps I was not yet ready to deal with certain of his conclusions. If I had it to do over again, I think it I would have done it differently.

  3. Well, I have to respectfully disagree. As one who heard your presentation, I was impressed that you put Bob’s theory and practice into a philosophic framework. Few of those listening had thought in such terms, I suspect, and I am sure I’m not the only one who found it enlightening. Should you wish to send me a copy, I will be glad to post it on this blog so that others may judge for themselves.

  4. Thanks for the vote of confidence, Frank. I appreciate it. I also appreciate (and gladly accept) your kind offer to publish my PD address. I’ll e-mail you a copy forthwith. At the time, it was deemed too lengthy to be published in its original (delivered) form. Thus the version that appeared in the TMI Focus was essentially little more than an abridgement of an abridgement. Also, I want to make clear that it’s not that I regret anything I said. My remarks still reflect my thinking. Nor do I regret giving the talk–far from it. That event was a definite high point for me, a moment of great import. As I explained to Laurie at the time, it was a daunting, but exhilarating prospect to be talking about Bob’s philosophy in the very hall where he had held forth on so many evenings, at the very institute he had literally built from scratch. No, what I regret is the incompleteness of my remarks, and perhaps that is inevitable—there’s always room for more! But, like you, I wonder whether there was another, hidden agenda (hidden from my own conscious awareness, that is) behind my editorial selections of what to put in and what to leave out.

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