The Borderzone, Symbols Now and Then

If you would enjoy a view into the distinction between the living heart of a spiritual experience and the accretted shell of religious signs, symbols and beliefs, then consider reading Borderzone author Arsen Darnay’s recent post on the Primeval Forestry of Symbols.

Please read the following excerpt in mind of my own initiatory experiences of being attacked and pulled apart, as well as in mind of various abduction experiences that include frightening medical experimentation, implants and the like.

“…Mircea Eliade, an influential twentieth century historian of religion, had written a definitive study titled Shamanism. I found the book and took a new look. Soon it all came rushing back. Eliade’s is an exhaustive description of the way prehistoric wise men (shamans, medicine men, witch doctors, sorcerers) were initiated and how they practiced their craft. Description—not explanation. Eliade’s book, therefore, rapidly causes the eyes to glaze over. We learn that—

Such men (only a few were women) underwent death and rebirth. Demons, gods, or spirits killed and disemboweled them and then replaced their ordinary organs with new and more perfect ones; the higher beings placed magical bones, stones, or crystals into the initiates’ skulls or bodies. They brought the initiates back to life. Then these people, recovering, discovered that they’d gained what we’d call paranormal powers of healing, precognition, sight-at-distance, mind-reading, and so on and so forth.

To modern ears the descriptions sound so fantastic, weird, and brutal that dismissing them outright as primitive fantasy and superstition, all based on rude ritual, comes naturally. No temptation arises in most casual readers to imagine that these accounts could possibly reference real experiences or events. What did strike Eliade forcefully was the uniformity of these descriptions (with minor variations) from culture to culture and from all across the world, including Australia, which landmass had long been out of contact with the majority even of prehistoric humanity.”

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2 Responses to “The Borderzone, Symbols Now and Then”

  1. mike Clelland Says:

    The brutal initiation has a parallel in the UFO abduction lore. The brutal and terrifying experiences reported by abductees. And the follow up claims of heightened sensory and psychic abilities by these same people.

    Have you read PASSPORT TO THE COSMOS, the final book by Dr. John Mack?

    If not, you simply MUST read it!

  2. wildrote Says:

    Hey Mike,

    No, I haven’t actually read anything by John Mack. I’ll out Passport to the Cosmos on my reading list. Thanks.

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