This is a continuation of the previous entry of the 25th...
There, I spoke, uncharacteristically, of my discipleship to Meher Baba, and I briefly touched on the subject of my own credentials. What authority, actually, do I have to teach the subject of reincarnation? This is a conundrum, because what the Materialist can see of it, leading to a knee-jerk assumption, is that I have an unused master's degree in counseling, and I produced one indie documentary on the subject. I am a long-time disciple of someone who claimed to be the Avatar, and hence must be deluded; and I claim to have identified a past-life in the 19th century, which is impossible, so on that count also, I must be deluded.
Suppose, for a fraction of a second of suspending disbelief, that I'm right. For over 40 years, I really have been a disciple of the actual Avatar of this era; and I actually have identified a real past life, and not just any past life, but an unsung literary genius who had also deeply studied esoteric subjects.
You can see the gulf. There is, actually, no way for me bridge that gulf, if the Materialist remains in denial; while, as part of that denial, he insists he holds the high ground of logic and sanity.
In other words, as a psychiatrist once told his patient, "One of us is crazy."
As regards Meher Baba, his Avatarhood is self-evident, but here is what he says about it in the pamphlet, the "Universal Message," which he approved to be handed out to the public at the 1964 World's Fair: "I veil myself from man by his own curtain of ignorance, and manifest my glory to a few."
In other words, he is actually in charge of that Materialist's denial, not the Materialist, as he or she thinks. It's his own tool.
Far be it from me to try to forcibly remove it (as though I could).
As for me, well, I have just enough academic credentials to play the game. When I interviewed Dr. Jim Tucker, successor to reincarnation research pioneer Dr. Ian Stevenson, for my radio show, "Metaphysical Explorations," and I wrote up his biographical sketch, I accidentally put "M.S." instead of M.D. after his name. He gently called my attention to it, and I apologized that I had given him my own academic credentials! The irony is that mainstream scientists think he is a quack, despite the fact that he is a psychiatrist, as was Dr. Stevenson before him. And you know that the psychiatrists traditionally look down their noses at the psychologists, who look down their noses at the master's-level counselors, and so-on.
The authority I have to teach this subject is that I have been studying deep esoteric teachings for at least two lifetimes;* in my earlier lifetime, I apparently learned from my first wife, Abby, who learned from her mother. Abby's first cousin was Charles Poyen, the first to give lecture/demonstrations on Mesmerism in America. He, in turn, influenced Phineas Quimby, who influenced Mary Baker Eddy. When Charles Poyen first came to America in 1834, he stayed for the first five months in Abby's family home, when she was 18 years old. Who taught whom, we don't know, but I have learned that she had already written poetry evincing a sophisticated understanding of metaphysics as early as age 14. All we know, from the historical record, about Abby's mother, Sally, is that she was said to be "brilliant." And in the early 1800's, housewives weren't generally praised for their intellect. But long before I knew any of this, I had the intuitive "hit" that Abby's mother somehow influenced Christian Science from behind the scenes. Only later did I learn that there is, in fact, potentially a direct historical line.
Abby, I have determined, was the original author of "A Christmas Carol," with Mathew either collaborating, or editing after-the-fact, and then presenting the manuscript to Dickens in Boston, in 1842, about a year after her death.
Mathew studied everything he could get his hands on, but especially the ancient Greek Stoic philosophers, and then he became affiliated with the New Church which was based on the teachings of Emanuel Swedenborg. He later became a Spiritualist. I know that he met with psychic Andrew Jackson Davis, and I suspect he knew physical medium Daniel Dunglass Home personally. He ghost-wrote eloquently in defense of the cause, and addressed it in humorous sketches. He was a signer on the 1854 Spiritualist petition to Congress, and an officer in the Portland (Maine) Spiritualist Association. His advocacy is clearly evident in his travelogue, as well as in his satirical writing for Boston's answer to "Punch," the "Carpet-Bag," in the early 1850's. (The travelogue and these humorous sketches are historically claimed for other authors, but I was able to show that he was the actual author.)
Mathew did not get a formal education. He had no letters after his name; and yet, he was far more qualified to teach on these subjects than many who had them. His umbrella pseudonym for the "Carpet-Bag" was "Trismegistus," i.e., Hermes; and he lampooned academia with a character named "Dr. E. Goethe Digg," whom I have presented in a recent Update. All of this is before I incarnated as Stephen Sakellarios.
Enter this incarnation. As a boy, I am beset by great ideas, in a jumble of confusion. My mind, spinning with the urge to make sense of it all, finally becomes overloaded in my late teens. In order to keep my sanity, I throw it all out, and start over. This time, I begin studying the best of the best. I read the teachings of the greatest mystics the planet has seen--Buddha, Jesus, Krishna, Rumi--and a few more recent ones, including Sri Ramakrishna. Now I am getting a solid foundation from those who had, not opinions, but Gnosis.
This is a better foundation than one can ever get in college. It is also a better foundation than Mathew got by studying the Greek Stoic philosophers, Swedenborg, and Everybody Else.
This is my background, and these are my credentials. They will seem like absolute fantasy to most people. After all, if anyone actually took this seriously, don't you think they would immediately want to not only read, but eagerly study my book? Wouldn't I be asked for interviews, to participate in panel discussions, and all of that? Now, the extent to which my Guru veils such people from recognizing my credentials, is unknown. I strongly suspect it. There is a story in his legacy which suggests such a thing, which I won't share, here. But clearly, whether the public has "ears to hear" is in his control, based on that story.
Dr. Tucker graciously holds two copies of my book--an early one, and a more recent one. The purpose of that, is in case anyone ever wants to know, "Did you re-work your recorded memories to fit the historical facts as they were discovered?" I can demonstrate to them that I didn't. That assumes Dr. Tucker is willing to publicly cooperate at the time that question comes up. He will be in a position to look through the early version, and report, "No, he said it that way back in 2012."
But Dr. Tucker doesn't appear to take me seriously--he's doing it as a favor, perhaps because I shot a video interview of him in 2007, when nobody else was doing that, and it went viral; and I also gave him a good-quality interview for "Metaphysical Explorations."
But here's the question I'd suggest you ask yourself. If I'm self-deluded, I have to be very badly self-deluded. If I'm that badly self-deluded, logically, would I be capable of interviewing the foremost reincarnation researcher in the world? In such a way that I do a very credible job of it, so that he was pleased with it, and linked to that interview from his Department's website?
It doesn't make sense, does it? For the matter of that, I shouldn't be able to write essays of this calibre every other day or so, either.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
*Several clues in his published works suggest that Mathew was aware of an earlier lifetime as a "Jewish high priest." I once had a psychic reading in which the psychic's first comment was that I she saw "rabbi all over me." Another psychic described a lifetime as a Celtic priest, which I subsequently seemed to remember in a regression session under Dr. Roger Woolger, at one of his training seminars. And I also suspect that Abby and I were alchemists together. Mathew, meanwhile, seemed to be deeply drawn to the philosophers of ancient Greece, though I have not felt that affiliation in this lifetime; rather, actually, something of an aversion.
Music opening this page: "The Song of the Reed," words by Rumi,
music and performance by Jim Meyer, from the album, "The Ancient One"