TGU — Bob Monroe as an example of pioneering

Thursday, June 23, 2016

F: 3:15 a.m. Last time, you said I was wrong to think that various “afterlife” schemes failed to consider our future in the sense of being part of a larger being. And I gather that is our jumping-off point today.

TGU: Take Bob Monroe’s scheme, for instance. He talks of belief-system territories and “the park” in Focus 27, and it all sounds oriented toward an individual soul getting out of one individual life, becoming healed or refreshed or in some way terminating its past existence, and then going on, either to further adventures in the earth or to other things like playing in the greater universe. This scheme is proposed in Far Journeys and recapitulated in Ultimate Journey, and so naturally this is what is chiefly remembered.

F: I know where you are going with this. His first book, Journeys out of the Body, recounted strange experiences including what seemed to be a divine being passing by while he and everyone else bowed low. He never knew what to make of it.

TGU: No, because these were early days in his own exploration, plus there was no connecting concept. He reported what he had experienced, the understandable and the puzzling. But when it came time to build upon his experiences, naturally all the weight would come down on what he had experienced as an individual, and what those who read his books could relate to and do something about in terms of their individual lives. What lay beyond remained beyond.

F: “You do the best you can,” he said in Far Journeys. He didn’t have any religious background, and that lack of background equipped him admirably to experience and conceptualize and report with modern eyes. The defect of the quality was that it allowed him to slur over theological implications, which of course shaped his considerable legacy in a certain direction.

TGU: Well, a man’s legacy various according to those who are considering it, or shall we say assimilating it. It was helpful – one might say, almost, vital – that what you are thinking of as the theological implications be overlooked both by Monroe and by those he inspired.

F: I know where you are going here, too, and I find it almost too much work to write out what I know ahead of time.

TGU: As usual. This is why we task you with saying it rather than taking down the sense of it from us. It reduces that sense of drudgery. If you get it wrong, I can always correct it, besides which, consider, the words that well up within you as you phrase things are themselves the product of your mind, which means the product of both 3D and non-3D input. It is self-correcting, to the degree that you are a good receiver. This, for all who read this, of course.

F: All right. Well, my sense of it is that Bob came into the world with a mission. Or, another way to say it would be, he was so shaped as to be able to respond to certain opportunities, and did. He was a pioneer like, say, Carl Jung in a different field, who began the task of making certain realities respectable to the western “scientific” materialist mindset. The religions that had supported this and previous and other contemporary civilizations were no longer sufficient, and yet some way of exploring human potential and the human place in the 3D and non-3D universe was needed. His lack of religious orientation, his mechanical aptitude, his rash self-confidence and willingness to try things all led him way farther than he ever expected or intended to go – at least, consciously. (I don’t know that, of course, but that’s the sense of it that I get.)

TGU: He was, you might say, the opener of a new doorway. And the institute he somewhat absent-mindedly wound up founding incorporated his attitude of “decide for yourself, we’re not going to provide you with much of a framework, lest it inhibit you.”

F: My friend Joe Felser examined Bob’s approach from a philosophical point of view and said it was radical skepticism combined with radical empiricism.

TGU: So this was his legacy – a way of investigation, an organization that preserved that way (in the form of programs, mostly), and of product such as tapes and CDs that married the technique to suggested specific approaches and applications. And his books. He did not build upon the inexplicable things he had seen; he built upon what was most useful to those who were following in his footsteps. And life itself led him onward. If not for his wife’s long illness, perhaps no Lifeline [program], and if no Lifeline program, and what it led to, perhaps his legacy would have been more or less confined to a way of demonstrating that “you are more than your physical body.” That was the starting place; it certainly wasn’t the end of the journey.

You’ll be thinking I’ve forgotten what all this is in aid of. The relevance is this: How could people find daylight

F: That analogy isn’t going to work.

TGU: No. Let’s put it this way. In order to find a new way, it helps if you realize that the old ways won’t do. That implies that your dissatisfaction – your mental anemia, let’s say – is so pervasive that you aren’t likely to accept anybody’s word for anything, except tentatively, as a sort of jumping-off place. Bob Monroe provided that for a certain type of journey.

F: And his work was supported sufficiently by the non-3D that people were inspired to discover the institute and the books and the tapes for 40 years in sufficient numbers to keep it going.

TGU: We’re smiling. We know that’s how it looks to you, as sort of non-3D support for the institute in order to keep it going, and there is something in that, but in our eyes the situation is very different. The pressure of people coming to programs nudged Bob’s legacy from being another literary record of one man’s unusual experience into being a means of individual discovery. In other words, it went from being a second-hand record of one man’s first-hand experience to being the means of providing people with their own first-hand experience.

And in so doing, you see, it widened the bridgehead. A generation of explorers – like Rita, to name but one – contributed their experiences and insights as individuals and to some extent as a community. Another generation of explorers then had them to lean upon and learn from, and they made their own discoveries, which were added to the – the corporate lore, call it.

F: I think you mean institutional memory.

TGU: All right. The point is, the legacy lives and broadens and of course changes. That is what happens to any exploration. The danger is calcification, always, and at some point that will come, just as it has come to other belief systems. You may regard it as part of the life-cycle every system of organized thought and analysis includes.

F: We’ve gone three quarters of an hour and we haven’t really touched on afterlife schemes as they see us as part of a larger being.

TGU: Well, things take on a momentum of their own, and sometimes it is profitable to follow that course. Nothing here was a waste of time. If anything, perhaps it better prepares the ground, in so far as it shows the reasons behind the tendencies to stay with the individual rather than the larger being’s level.

F: Originally, I gather, you intended mostly to remark that Monroe himself experienced aspects of the larger-being perspective.

TGU: Well, not so much. But I’m satisfied with where this went. Anent that, bear in mind that Monroe knew that the individual level was only one level; that reality was more complex than that. He talked of I-There and the greater being of which he was a part, and speculated on what would happen when all the probes extended by his larger being returned to their source, you will remember. All that is right there in plain sight, but Bob Monroe was a man oriented toward what was practical, toward what people could do, and that all centered on work as individuals, of course. He chose to open pathways for people in 3D, and let the larger being and other non-3D matters take care of themselves. You can’t do everything at once.

F: So the take-away here is –?

TGU: Bob Monroe was a pioneer, and pioneers don’t have time and life enough to be surveyors. They make maps, and they get a feel for the terrain, but the making of elaborate surveys and interrelations is a job for those who follow them. Nothing is final. Everything is a work in progress.

F: And so–?

TGU: And so it is up to you, the living, to continue the exploration and the map-making, because the time is always now, the need is always now, the opportunity is always now.

F: I see a lot of people expanding on Bob’s work, or let’s say building on it. Bruce Moen, not least, but plenty of others.

TGU: And your particular niche opened up when you first began to learn how to do this, and moved on from there, through meeting Bob Monroe and that long lunchtime conversation, and the programs, and the few years with Rita, and so on. Everybody who wants to have a role to play will find that life has uniquely equipped them for one particular contribution, and chances are, it won’t be a contribution that fits a predefined niche. You may start off to do your own exploration for your own reasons, you may write a book or develop a home-study course or “merely” find ways to interpret what you learn to others who have no knowledge of Monroe’s system and don’t need or want it. You may do combinations of things. You may help in technical developments, or organizational ones. There is no telling. You may work alone or in groups or sometimes in one way, sometimes in another. But it will be unique to you, count on it. So don’t expect any given model to do more than take you just so far. Your contribution, after all, will be the new wrinkle that you provide out of what you are and what you do.

So next time we will start again with the question of how various belief-systems incorporate the sense of the larger being.

F: Okay. This was very interesting, if a little unusual.

TGU: You shouldn’t find the “unusual” very surprising, by this point.

F: No indeed. Okay, till next time.


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