Edgar Cayce

APPENDIX

The Edgar Cayce Readings

          The record shows that psychic phenomenon is a mysterious occurrence that defies explanation, and manifests in strange and unaccountable ways. Often called ESP or extra-sensory-perception, such accounts involve telekinesis, clairvoyance, astral projection, and include religious episodes such as transcendental or mystical experiences. Such experiences are well known and highly sought in the East; they have names such as Satori, Moksha, and Nirvana.

         Whether a gift, a talent, or just a psychic ability, one figure that stands out in occult science is Edgar Cayce, often called the “Sleeping Prophet.” He was a medical diagnostician, a prophet, and a devoted student of bible lore. He left more than 14,000 documented records of clairvoyant statements he had given for more than six thousand people over a period of forty-three years. Through self-induced trance-sleep he cured people he had never seen, and answered metaphysical questions that he, at first, could hardly believe in the waking state.

          Plato, Cayce, Plotinus, and many other religious figures, have long taught the immortality of the soul as opposed to the transience of the body. Known as the principle of transmigration, metempsychosis or reincarnation, it is always accompanied by its sister doctrine Karma, which is believed to be the unyielding law of cause and effect that guides the soul through its experiences. It seems necessarily that the soul should require more than one living experience in the earth-plane to evolve and develop its spiritual ‘life;’ especially if the soul is thought of as having some sense of immortality. Edgar was surprised to hear upon waking that he had answered questions about these states of existence between physical lives. There was no mention of this in the bible, and he worried that something had gone wrong with his strange psychic gift. But he continued on with his readings that now included the “Life Reading,” they have been of great benefit to many people, especially those souls living in distressed conditions.

          The Cayce readings maintain that each person is responsible for the circumstances in which he finds himself, and not the innocent victim of his environment, he is simply Meeting Self. When individuals reappear again in a new body, they do not start from scratch, but pick up exactly where their old life ended. As Cayce says:

        “When a soul enters a new body, a door is opened, leading to an opportunity for building the soul’s destiny. Everything which has been previously built, both good and bad, is contained in that opportunity. There is always a way of redemption, but there is no way to dodge responsibilities which the soul has itself undertaken.”

        He continually emphasizes that ‘thoughts are things,’ that ‘thought is ever the builder.’ The scriptures allude to the same idea in the phrase: “So as ye think it in your heart, so have ye done it.” In Edgar’s words:

        “ From the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh; and thoughts are deeds, and each builds to himself that which is to be glorification or edification or resentment built in self.”

        We return again to face the results of our actions. Although free to choose, we set the conditions for future choices, the consequences of which are inescapable. Plotinus, as shown elsewhere, places greater emphasis on the need for a soul to renounce the material world since matter is the principle of evil, but Cayce stresses the self-less activity of a soul in terms of the highest ideals within the material world. As he says:

        “That which makes for soul development, which is the purpose for the entrance of a soul into material experience, is ever through the will for the entity to be in accord with that which is its ideal. If the ideal is chosen for material blessings, material benefits, self-indulgence, fame and fortune, then little may be the soul development; for in these manners there is the deceitfulness of fame and fortune.”

        The ideals that offer the greatest advance in soul development are in terms of self-less activity, but there is always an alternative to working off accumulated debts by unselfish dedication to the welfare of others less fortunate than ourselves. He says:

        “Then, as there has been and is the passage of a soul through time and space, through this and that experience, it has been and is for the purpose of giving more and more in his relationships one with another; in mercy, love, patience, long-suffering, brotherly love, for these be the fruits of the spirit, and they that would be one with Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”

          One lifetime of genuine sacrifice to the welfare of others might well equalize five or six sterile life experiences where progress stood still. Cayce always and emphatically stresses the power of free will over pre-ordained destiny, and that no soul is ever so encumbered with old debts that it must resign itself to drearily pay and pay. And the soul can advance by methods that are not immediately apparent to their conscious reason. The blind man healed by Christ, for example, was probably not blind because he had sinned, but because his soul was gaining stature from the experience of blindness. It is not wise to assume that we should know the circumstances that have befallen any individual. Not all events involve Karma, but woe to souls that heed not their own actions.

         Cayce makes a distinction between the personality and individuality. He explains that the personality is that temporal, passing aspect of the physical body, while the individuality is immortal and eternal. The personality is a high-lighted portion of the individuality, and is shaped by three or four incarnations, that area of earthly experience on which the individuality wants to work. Each incarnation reflects the emotions and talents of the person. Thus, a personality is only an aspect of an individuality. A soul might assume any of several personalities, each of which would express a portion of itself. When a life is finished, the personality vanishes. Its pattern is absorbed into the individuality. Its record is retained, but it becomes a part of the individuality, which is at all times the sum total of what it has been, felt, experienced, and thought down through the ages. The problem with many souls is that their personality and individuality are not in harmony. The implication is that the emotions lead a soul in the direction that is not in accord with its ideals, so there is little progress. “The individuality and personality do not reflect the same shadow in the mirror of life.”

          Between Earth lives the soul dwells in planetary dimensions as a state of consciousness that becomes the mental urges of the individuality carried over into Earth lives. On the other hand, previous earth lives and experiences create the emotional urges becoming the personality of the new born soul-entity.

         Edgar Cayce spent more than twenty years giving readings as a medical diagnostic tool without any mention of astrology or philosophy. But in 1923 some non-routine questions were posed to the sleeping Cayce which opened the door to a radically different kind of reading–the life reading. It is through the life reading that astrological thought emerged in all its significance. But Cayce emphasized over and over that the strongest power was man himself. As he stated,

        “The strongest force used in the destiny of man is the sun first, then the closer planets to the earth, or those that are coming to ascension at the time of the birth of the individual, but let it be understood here, no action of any planet, or the phases of the sun, the moon or any of the heavenly bodies surpass the rule of man’s willpower.”

         Our relationship to the solar system is a personal one. We are caught up in its purpose, and is our purpose for being here. We interact with the heavenly spheres; we influence them as they influence us. The earth is a meeting ground where souls work on what they have learned in other lives, combined with lessons from other dimensions of consciousness in the planetary spheres. Each planet contains a portion of these lessons to be learned, a vibratory center of consciousness in which souls dwell and ascend to greater awareness. Cayce explains planetary vibrations by drawing a parallel with the vibrations one collects, absorbs, and builds by dwelling and working in a special environment, such as a college. As he says,

        “Attending this or that university would make for a parlance peculiar unto itself. Even though individuals may study the same line of thought, one attending Harvard, another Yale, or the University of Utah, they each would carry with them the vibrations created by their very activity in those environs.”

        In other words, the entire student body gives rise to a collective consciousness or vibration that might be called the ‘Spirit’ of the institution. In the same way, we are affected by planetary vibrations because we have attuned ourselves to them while dwelling in those environs. As Cayce says:

        “Then there are the sojourns in other realms of the solar system which represent certain attributes. Not that ye maintain a physical earth-body in Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus or Saturn; but there is an awareness or a consciousness in those realms when absent from the body, and the response to the position those planets occupy in this solar system.”

          The readings indicate that every soul must pass through all of the planetary spheres of consciousness if spiritual progress is to be realized. In his words:

        “Each planetary influence vibrates at a different rate of vibration. An entity entering that influence enters that vibration; it is not necessary that he change, but it is the grace of God that he may! It is part of the universal consciousness, the universal law; for, without passing through each and every stage of development, there is not the correct vibration to become One with the Creator, hence the entity passes along those stages that some have seen as planes, some have seen as steps, some have seen as cycles, and some have experienced as places.”

         Souls then cycle through the planetary spheres, and according to the readings, each of us is influenced the most by the planet from which we took our last flight into our present incarnation, and influenced the least, if at all, by the planet or planets from which we have been absent the longest. Most people have from four to six planets influencing their lives, but as few as one planet and as many as eight planets have been cited in the readings.

         Astrologically the solar system embodies our spiritual system just as the human entity is a spiritual being inherent in a physical body. The macrocosm of the sun-planet system is an image of the microcosm that is the human soul. The Earth is our temporary home away from our ancestral home.

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