By Fort, Charles; Fort, Charles Hoy; Méheust, Bertrand; Myers, Frederic William Henry; Myers, Frederic William Henry; Vallee, Jacques; Vallée, Jacques; Méheust, Bertrand; Kripal, Jeffrey John; Vallee, Jacques; Myers, Frederic William Henry; Fort, Charles
Most students brush aside study into the magical as pseudoscience, a frivolous pursuit for the paranoid or gullible. Even historians of faith, whose paintings obviously attends to occasions past the world of empirical technology, have proven scant curiosity within the topic. however the historical past of psychical phenomena, Jeffrey J. Kripal contends, is an untapped resource of perception into the sacred and by means of tracing that historical past throughout the final centuries of Western concept we will be able to see its strength centrality to the severe examine of religion.
Kripal grounds his research within the paintings of 4 significant figures within the heritage of paranormal learn: psychical researcher Frederic Myers; author and stand-up comedian Charles fortress; astronomer, desktop scientist, and ufologist Jacques Vallee; and thinker and sociologist Bertrand Méheust. via incisive analyses of those thinkers, Kripal ushers the reader right into a beguiling global someplace among truth, fiction, and fraud. The cultural historical past of telepathy, teleportation, and UFOs; a ghostly love tale; the occult dimensions of technology fiction; chilly battle psychic espionage; galactic colonialism; and the intimate courting among cognizance and tradition all come jointly in Authors of the Impossible, a stunning and profound examine how the mystical bridges the sacred and the scientific.
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Additional resources for Authors of the impossible : the paranormal and the sacred
But how should we now proceed? How at least to begin to address this seeming “interdimensional bridging”? As a humble way of beginning, we might say that the psychical and the paranormal appear in that space where the humanities and the sciences meet beyond both, where mind and matter, subjectivity and objectivity merge in ways that can only violate and offend our present order of knowledge and possibility. Accordingly, to approach such phenomena as subjective things, as “anecdotes” or “coincidences,” as interesting internal states that have no real connection to the external physical world of objects and events is to seriously misunderstand them.
Eliade thus explores the critical literature on such things as levitation in Catholic hagiography and Indian yoga and the “fluid” link said to exist between an object and its previous owner assumed in various magical rituals and psychical practices (hence “contagious magic,” the magical use of relics, and “psychometry” or the psychical perception of persons via their possessions). As a way of concluding the essay, Eliade takes the historicists to task for claiming faithfulness to the historical documents, until of course these documents violate their own positivistic and materialistic worldviews.
Then they simply ignore them or brush their data aside as “primitive,” “mistaken,” and so on. ” It appears that Eliade’s convictions here flowed out of his own personal experience of such matters and date back to around 1928, when, “as a student, I went to study Yoga and Tantra with S. N. ’ ”34 Since he doubted that he would be able to describe in “scientific prose”35 the nature of such experiences, he would later “camouflage” them in his literary writings, and particularly in the novella The Secret of Doctor Honigberger, which he explicitly identifies as a species of littérature fantastique.