Pelley, William Dudley - Seven Minutes in Eternity With Their Aftermath 06
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
“Seven Minutes in Eternity ” With Their Aftermath By William Dudley Pelley
ONE NIGHT while still imbued with the “feeling” of my fourth dimensional adventure, I took down a volume of Emerson and opened it by chance to his essay on the Over-Soul. In the middle of it, though not reading any specific line, epigram, paragraph or page, I had a queer moment of confusion, a sort of cerebral vertigo, then a strange physical sensation at the very top of my head as though a beam of pure white light had poured down from above and bored a shaft straight into my skull. In that instant a vast weight went out of my whole physical ensemble. A veil was torn away.
I saw no “vision” but something had happened and was continuing to happen. A cascade of pure, cool, wonderful peace was falling down from somewhere above me and cleansing me. My book fell from my fingers to the rug and stayed there. I sat staring into space.
I was not the same man I had been a moment before. I mean this physically, mentally, spiritually. I knew that somehow I had acquired senses and perceptions that I could never hope to describe to any second person and yet they were as real to me as the shape of my wrists. For a time I wondered if “much learning had driven me mad” but then I recalled that really mad people never stop to question whether or not they’re mad.
Next I was aware of something new and strange in my whole experience — There was someone in that darkening room with me beside Laska, my dog. In fact, I was aware that several living, vibrant personalities were with me in that room. Laska sat up, cocked her head from side to side and wagged her tail at some of them — at nothing apparently — one of them in particular standing at my desk at the north end of the room.
And yet I was not in the slightest afraid. Why be afraid of our friends? . . .
In all of my life up to that time I had never seen a ghost, never had more than an academic interest in psychic phenomena, and pooh-poohed spiritualism as a sort of crack-brained dogma that belonged in the same pigeon-hole with palm-reading and astrology. I had not invited any of these experiences that I knew of. They had simply come to me.
What really had happened was, I had unlocked hidden powers within myself that I know every human being possesses and had augmented my five physical senses with other senses just as bona fide, legitimate and natural as touch, taste, smell, sight and hearing.
That I had help in unlocking those hidden powers I do not deny. Nevertheless, nothing had happened to me that has not happened to hundreds of other people, only in very rare cases do they talk about it. What those hidden powers are, and why I maintain that they are bonafide, legitimate and natural I will have to leave to another article. But they had suddenly shown me that life was not at all the ordinary, hum-drum, three- meals-a-day thing that I had always accepted. Its essence and its meaning was so vast and fine and high and beautiful that it overwhelmed me and a recognition of it performed a sort of recreation in me that made me feel I was not the same fellow I had been just before.
My desire to explain what I mean by this, is almost an ache within me at this moment. But for some uncanny reason words are not the medium that conveys it. Thought doesn’t convey it. Feeling doesn’t convey it. The only term I can employ that comes anywhere near the truth is spirituality.
The “me” that is the Bill-Pelley identity can convey it by “being” and the fact that I “am” gets it to you.
Is this last a nonsensical statement? All I can say is, that I know by experience that there is a great, overpowering existence outside of what we call Life — that I have been in it and felt it — that having been in it has endowed me with certain capacities that have transformed my whole concept of the universe and some of my friends are kind enough to add, have transformed me. Physically as well as mentally.