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Are Ghosts Hallucinations?

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  • Tantrika Psychology
    * In the spirit of our Halloween holiday , I m sharing Tantrika insights about ghosts and luminous bodies, disembodied souls we sometimes see that are
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 3, 2011
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      In the spirit of our Halloween "holiday", I'm sharing Tantrika insights
      about ghosts and luminous bodies, disembodied souls we sometimes see that
      are mistakenly referred to as ghosts. Tantrika practice immensely
      optimizes intuitional capabilities, symptoms of spiritual, of transpersonal
      progress on the evolutionary scale. In this spirit I share these insights
      with you from a discourse given in 1982.


      Mystical Sadhu

      Tantra Psychology <http://tantrapsychology.net/>
      http://TantraPsychology.Net/ <http://tantrapsychology.net/>




      Mysticism is a never-ending endeavour to conjugate the intersection of the
      finite with the Infinite.

      Are Ghosts Hallucinations?

      Are ghosts always hallucinations? What is an hallucination? In the case
      of hallucinations, there is no defect in optics, the defect is in ocularity
      -- that is, the ocular vision is influenced by different thought-waves.
      These hallucinations may be of two types, positive and negative. In a
      positive hallucination, there is no physical defect in the ocular vision.
      Rather, one's vision is affected by the thought-waves which want to see
      something different.

      And what is a negative hallucination? Here also there is no defect in the
      ocular vision, but due to excessive pressure of the thought-waves -- we say
      "auto-suggestion" -- the ocular vision becomes negative; that is, the
      thought-waves do not want to see something which is actually present in the
      ocular vision.

      Many scholars are of the opinion that so-called ghosts are positive
      hallucinations, and sometimes people are also misguided by negative
      hallucinations. They say that in this case the ocular vision -- the optic
      nerves -- is deceiving them, but actually the main role here is played by
      the thought-waves, not by any physical organ, or psychic cells, or
      psycho-physical cells (ectoplasm).

      It is said, Abhibha'van'a't citta'n'usrs't'apretadarshanam ["The sight of
      ghosts is created by the citta'n'u (mind-stuff) in concentrated thought"].
      Abhibha'van'a means "cellular suggestion" -- that which affects not only
      the mind but also the nerve cells, so that due to the defective functioning
      of the nerve cells one sees something which is not present, or does not see
      something which is actually physically present. Cellular suggestion is of
      two types: auto-suggestion and outer-suggestion. Auto-suggestion takes
      place within the jurisdiction of one's own mind, in the individual mind,
      whereas outer-suggestion is the transmission of suggestion from another's
      mind, from another, stronger, mind. When a weaker mind is greatly
      influenced by a stronger mind, as a result something is not seen or nothing
      is seen.

      You know, philosophically, whatever we see in this universe is, we may say,
      a positive hallucination created by the Supreme Consciousness (Parama
      Purus'a*). Whatever He thinks is seen by the nerve cells of the individual
      mind. The difference between this practical world and ghosts is that in
      the case of ghosts the suggestion comes from the individual mind; one's own
      thought is projected outside.

      But when people see so-called ghosts and apparitions, are they always
      positive hallucinations? No, they are not. Whatever we observe in this
      physical world is made of the five fundamental factors (solid, liquid,
      luminous, aerial and ethereal), created in such a way that it automatically
      functions. Its inherent capacity for action is derived from this physical
      world under the inspiration of the Supreme Consciousness.

      There may be some entities that do not require food and drink. Any entity
      composed of solid and liquid factors will certainly require food and drink,
      because food is mainly composed of the solid factor, and drink is mainly
      composed of the liquid factor. But if any entity is composed only of the
      other three factors -- luminous, aerial, and ethereal -- without any solid
      or liquid, then that entity is called a "luminous body".

      By means of nerve cells, the mind operates the physical body: by creating
      vibrations such as smell, form, touch, taste, etc., the nerve cells either
      receive tanma'tras (inferential essences) or projects them externally. But
      luminous bodies have no nerves, because nerve cells and nerve fibres are
      all physical; thus they cannot function properly. Only, as in
      auto-suggestion, they may create a vibration within, and experience some
      type of feeling.

      These luminous bodies are not ghosts or apparitions; they have nothing to
      do with them. Neither are they related to auto-suggestion or
      outer-suggestion. Under some circumstances, if someone happens to see this
      kind of luminous body, one may think one is seeing a ghost. But actually
      there is no ghost at all -- it is only a luminous body. It is not possible
      to see luminous bodies in broad daylight; it may be possible during the
      darkness of night, but then not everywhere.

      It is said that there are seven kinds of luminous bodies: yaks'a, siddha,
      gandharva, kinnara, vidya'dhara, prakrtiliina and videhaliina. They are
      categorized according to their respective psychologies.

      Suppose there is a very elevated person who often ideates on the Supreme
      Consciousness, but who has some greed for wealth. He or she does not,
      however, express it openly to the Supreme, nor does he or she even think of
      it directly. He or she thinks indirectly, "Oh, since I am a devotee of the
      Supreme Consciousness, He will certainly give me enormous wealth and make
      me immensely rich." Those who harbour this sort of covert desire are reborn
      as yaks'as. Thus sometimes we refer to "the wealth of the yaks'as".

      The second is vidya'dhara. Those who have vanity of knowledge, although
      they do not expressly beseech this from the Supreme, but rather think
      inwardly that the Supreme should bestow an enormous wealth of knowledge
      upon them -- this type of person is reborn as vidya'dhara. Vidya'dhara is
      also a luminous body.

      The next is gandharva. Those who have a great talent for higher music
      (people should cultivate music to the maximum to give pleasure to the
      Supreme Consciousness) and mentally think, "Oh, Parama Purus'a, I want
      knowledge of the science of music, not You" -- they are reborn as
      gandharvas. (In Sanskrit the science of music is called ga'ndharva
      vidya'.) They are also luminous bodies; they are not ghosts at all. They
      are also not visible in daylight, just as other luminous bodies are

      The next is kinnara. Those who are vain about their physical beauty, or
      those who pray to the Supreme to give them more and more physical charm,
      are reborn as kinnaras. They are also luminous bodies.

      Then siddha. Those human beings who are doing sa'dhana'**, who have great
      love for Parama Purus'a, but in their heart of hearts are proud of their
      occult powers or pray to Parama Purus'a to grant them still more occult
      powers -- these people after death are reborn as siddhas. Of all the
      categories of luminous bodies, the siddhas are the most elevated. They
      often help sa'dhakas in their sa'dhana'.

      All these luminous bodies are collectively called devayoni. Besides the
      above, there are videhaliina and prakrtiliina. Those who wrongly worship
      Parama Purus'a in the form of clay, iron or other material substances, are
      ultimately transformed into prakrtiliina.

      The next is videhaliina: those who run after occult powers and think, "I
      will attain such great occult power that with it, I will move from place to
      place." These are all luminous bodies; they are not ghosts, nor are they
      positive or negative hallucinations.

      Thus ghosts are not positive hallucinations, or negative hallucinations, or
      siddhas or devayonis. Then is there any such things as ghosts? Not
      exactly ghosts, but there is something like that.

      After death, when the mind dissociates from the body, the accumulation of
      unfulfilled sam'ska'ras*** or reactive momenta remains, although the body
      with the five fundamental factors no longer exists. Thus, the mind cannot
      function, but it remains in potential form. Now, in some circumstances, if
      the ectoplasm of a living person is associated with that disembodied
      potential mind, then that disembodied mind gets a mental body temporarily,
      for a very short time. Then that mental body can start functioning with
      the help of the nerve cells and nerve fibres of that living person, but
      only for a few minutes.

      What is this called? It is neither a positive hallucination or a negative
      hallucination, nor is it a luminous body (devayoni). Then what is it? A
      living person's ectoplasmic cells become the mental body of a dead person
      for a few minutes until -- after a few minutes -- that mental body again
      dies. This mental body I will call pres'itama'nas -- "re-created mind."

      Some people may do good works or get good works done with the help of these
      pres'itama'nas, but only those who have perfect control over their minds
      and over the nerve cells and nerve fibres of their bodies can do this.

      Those who are bad people can do evil deeds with the help of these
      pres'itama'nas. They can hurl stones into others' houses, throw bones, or
      overturn tables and cots -- all these things can be done for only a few

      So we see that what we call a "ghost" is not always a positive or a
      negative hallucination, nor is it always a siddha or a pres'itama'nas. In
      fact, we cannot prove the existence of a pres'itama'nas or siddha, and
      insofar as positive hallucination is concerned, it does not have any actual
      existence at all. If you see a positive hallucination, it is a mental

      If anything of this sort (pres'itama'nas or luminous body) comes before
      you, there is only one remedy to remove it: that is, do kiirtana or
      devotional chanting. Do kiirtana for one minute or repeat your guru
      mantra, and that "ghost" will instantly vanish into thin air. So under no
      circumstances should you be afraid.


      Parama Purus'a* Universal Mind, Supreme Consciousness, the psyche and
      substance within which all things exist, with an emphasis towards subtlest
      realms of being, a threshold attainable by humans through sa'dhana'

      sa'dhana'** Intuitional science carrying the practitioner progressively
      into subtler realms through appropriately designed processes positively
      affecting every realm of life and mind, and leading toward merger [yoga]
      back into Universal Consciousness.

      sam'ska'ra*** The reactive momentum resulting from one's thoughts, words
      or deeds -- too often misnamed "karma", which is the proactive engagement
      in the manifest universe with ideation upon the whole of the universe and
      the centricity from which it generates, operates and into which each and
      every being returns from its individuation. The term "karma" is all too
      often misappropriatedly used when sam'ska'ra is the proper term. "Karma",
      properly used, means action performed with the ideation of the Supreme
      Consciousness at all times throughout an action. "Kriya", properly used,
      means performing action without cosmic ideation, and consequently racks up

      You can find this article, and many more, for furthering human evolution at
      http://TantraPsychology.net/ <http://tantrapsychology.net/>


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