Messages from heaven: the process

Thursday, September 30, 2010

6 AM. Okay, guys, let’s go. Spiritual influences as strands of a person-mind?

If you don’t mind, we’d rather give you the day to work on notes.

I doubt it would work out that way. I’d be likely to dissipate the time, or even sleep! I’d rather get a little more of whatever you’re providing.

Bear in mind, one time is not the same as another time. Each moment has its special quality, and while many elements may provide more or less the same opportunities, some will not. So, not everything one may want to do will be equally easy at any given proposed time. Receiving messages from heaven, in particular, would be subject to disruption from various causes, as you might imagine, because it is subject to so many influences.

You might go into that.

While not-talking to you, sure, we understand.

If the material gets through, we’re that much farther along, and if it doesn’t, or arrives garbled, we can always go back and fix it.

True enough – as long as you don’t unconsciously revert to treating this as gospel.

Very well. In any communication process, there is an implicit comparison to radio, or perhaps television. This allows more elaborate and nearly tactile analogies to be used than could have been used before the day of long distance wireless transmission and reception. And, as you know, analogy is the best conveyancer of an abstract idea. (Best, if used as analogy; worst, if used as literal description.) So, let’s look at communication in the absence of physical contact.

An analogy, remember.

Consider yourselves receiving sets. You have a shortwave radio that you could listen to. When you do, you can hear static, and indistinguishable sounds, and garbled fragments, and clear speech, depending. If you don’t receive clearly, sometimes it’s because your set is faulty, or badly maintained. Sometimes the atmospheric conditions aren’t right. Sometimes you can’t hear well because you’re half asleep, or your head is clogged with the residue of a head cold. Sometimes the transmitter has his or her own problems, and so even though you are alert and your instrument is tuned and ready and the atmospheric conditions are good, there’s nothing coming through. Maybe they’re asleep on the other end, for all you know.

Now, when you do receive clearly, what do you receive? Sometimes it is a clearly understandable message from someone you are familiar with – a friend, say, that either you met or perhaps never met except via the shortwave, but still established diplomatic relations with because of a compatibility. Or perhaps the words are clear but they don’t make a lot of sense to you, and you need to ask for clarification. And sometimes you receive messages, clear or confusing, complete or fragmentary, from unknown sources, and you have to try to deduce the character of the sender by the qualities of the message. (This is what you do every day of your lives, of course. How else do you weigh and measure each other but secondhand?) Sometimes you suspect or realize that you are being misled, deliberately or accidentally. Sometimes you suspect that the person on the other end of the line is crazy, or anyway deluded. And of course if you are communicating with someone whose primary language isn’t the same as yours, the possibilities for mis- or non-communication expand significantly, with the additional complication that such misunderstandings may be hidden within seeming clarity. That is, the receiver receives exactly the words the sender sent – but the same word means very different things to each, either because of colloquial differences or misunderstanding on one end or the other of the other’s usage. You see.

Beyond these difficulties is the primary obstacle, which doesn’t even appear to be there, which is that on either or both ends precision in language may be unknown. The sender sends more or less what s/he means, the receiver understands more or less what was meant, because the receiver settles for a fast impression rather than really considering the message. Or – on the opposite extreme – the receiver misunderstands because so respectful of the process of transmission that s/he takes literally what is meant as explanatory metaphor, or takes seriously what was meant as a joke, or processes through various distorting filters what is meant as straightforward communication. None of this makes for easy transmission and reception of ideas.

All right. Now, suppose as well as a shortwave radio the person receiving messages also has a telephone. In the old days before the veil thinned (to mix metaphors), the phone was a land-line, requiring séances or specialized oracles. Today you work with cell phones and anybody can use them anywhere, even while doing three other things. Pursuing this analogy has its interesting aspects. For one, the cell phone appears to be quite different from a shortwave radio, but of course it is actually a form of radio itself, only tied more closely to a physical support network (the cells and towers and their support network of electricity and maintenance). This has its analogy to your communication person-to-person. Each person seems to be accessed directly – through physicals means of the senses – and yet each is actually maintained by, and entirely dependent upon, a non-physical infrastructure.

Leaving off that complication for the moment, perhaps it is clear that telephone connections will be clearer than shortwave radio sometimes, under some conditions. Of course if the phone goes out for reasons of interference by any of a thousand physical reasons, shortwave is viable and goes from being a backup to being the primary link. And in any case, shortwave has its own charms and fascinations among hobbyists regardless whether the phone is working. For one thing, it allows communication with those whose phone connection no longer functions.

This seems sufficient for the day, to us.

All right, I’ll let you go back to sleep.


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