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Psychic Contact: Gods, Dogs, and Angels

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.pagan.magick,alt.religion.angels,alt.magick,alt.paranet.metaphysics,talk.religion.newage
From: nagasiva 
Subject: Re: Psychic Contact: Gods, Dogs, and Angels
Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2003 00:27:24 GMT

50030718 viii

#> the ontological status is not identical to the character of
#> the agent provided by the recipient of the communication.
#> that is, the equation of categories transcends taxonomy.
#> you can say A really = B all you like, but it doesn't change
#> the fact that the categories are provided to communicating
#> agents one whit, whether we're talking about dogs or toasters.
#> are toasters *really* angels? etc.

"angelicusrex" :
# First of all your categories are arbitrary. You are imposing them. 

not really, I'm trying to get a descriptive thing going which will
apply to all paradigms. you want to remain within your own, which
is understandable. you have mischaracterized my motivations and
my methods, which you may wish to reconsider, because I am one of
your most potent allies in this conversation.

# I am disagreeing with your terminology and methodology.

not very cogently I'm afraid.

# Let's not get all technical here. An angel is an invisible being which
# communicates, usually, only to a certain person. 

now you're beginning to impose your cosmology into the taxonomy,
describing the details of how angels communicate, what they are
beyond unsensible real agents, etc.  that's great, it helps us
to understand why you will say what you do about them. I'm not
trying to stop you from doing that, but I *am* trying to
separate what you believe from agreements we may all share.

# An imaginary friend is exacly the same thing. 

usually these are characterized not as beings, but as 
subjective phantasms created by the imagining child.

# Whereas a dog is a mammal quadraped bred as a servant
# and pet or sometimes food source for humans. They rarely 
# speak. Thought they do "communicate" with everyone around 
# them. They do however sometime run into burning rooms and 
# extract people. 

all this is sensible and doesn't disrupt the taxonomy I'd
created for our consideration. I suggest that you may wish
to return to it below in reflection of how it might be 
flushed out into a hierarchy of priority in psychic 
communication. in your response you begin that here.

# So do angels, so I hear. 

that would seem more problematic. if angels are not material
beings, how do they interact with the physical world, such
as by entering buildings and extracting people from them?
it is the age-old question of "what is the means by which
persons of a nonmaterial dimension affect the material and
vice-versa", and it isn't very easily resolved.

# So dogs can indeed "act as angels." 

there you shifted from ontological status to role acceptance.
'angels' therefore are just any saving being acting in 
a rescuing capacity, and aren't necessarily nonphysical.
you're helping to define more precisely what an angel is
(and therefore transcending the taxonomy I created by
stipulating your cosmology to fill it out nicely).

# However they cannot act as imaginary friends, as
# they indeed are "real friends."

precisely. this distinguishes them: 'real' vs. 'unreal'.
you are agreeing with my methodology and my taxonomy
here inasmuch as you are speaking from within it while
developing what you believe of your cosmological outlook.
thanks for making more plain how you see angels and dogs.

# Angels can certainly, being divine beings and 
# manifestations of the Supreme Creator, can appear 
# as dogs, if they so choose.

here is a large extention of your cosmology. you've
provided vast implications of how the cosmos came into
being, what role these 'unsensible real agents' have, 
and how they may be predisposed to interact with 
humans, what powers of appearance they have, etc.

in fact, your contention here is at variance, slightly,
with the initial presupposition that angels are
"unsensible". in fact you believe that they *may* be
sensed, if they make themselves appear in a certain
way (as dogs for example). in this manner we might
compare your assertion with how some believe that
ghosts (spirits of the dead, usually, but not always)
may interact with the world of the living (by at times
taking on a worldly appearance of some kind, or even
manifesting some kind of otherworldly substance in
their interaction such as 'ectoplasm').

# Toasters toast bread or bagels or pop-tarts. They are not 
# spiritual entities, they are not living entities. They are 
# manufactured "devices." A toaster has never befreinded 
# anyone, nor have they saved anyone's life from a burning 
# room. In fact they usually are at fault for burning things 
# down. Therefore they could be called a dangerous mechanical 
# appliance (a device having no personality or interior power 
# source, a non living device. Not an entity or being). 

here you're beginning to flesh out your cosmological beliefs
by discerning the inanimate objects with what you have called
"spiritual entities". we might ask in response how it is that
an inanimate object could be responsible in a moral sense,
but you're just locating a cause for fires (such as in a
malfunctioning toaster) rather than actually blaming 
toasters, with which it is very easy to agree.

# But one would never confuse a toaster with either an angel
# or a dog. Unless one is schizophraenic, however other 
# "confused thoughts" will also result from such a state.

that the three may be compared as different categories of
beings is what Tom and I and others are considering. you're
contending that they should not be confused, and with good
reason, given your cosmology. inasmuch as not everyone agrees
with your cosmology, they might also disagree with your
conclusions.  i.e. a 'shamanic' perspective might assert that
everything in the cosmos is a different shade of consciousness,
of living being (animate and inanimate). their notions of
what a nonsensed communicating agent might be may vary from
yours, especially if they don't see the world as created, 
or as populated by spirit emmissaries of your Creator God.

# ...Technical heirarch[ic]al differentiation between
# "messengers" which includes toasters, is of course, ludicrous.... 

'of course' here may be determined by things you've assumed that
others have not. in any case, you've made clear what you're
contending is true, and what you consider ludicrous. :> 

in fact, you've begun to refine with an employment of your beliefs
what it is that you consider to *be* a hierarchy of agents that 
may be considered for psychic communication (something I stopped
short of doing so as to apply to *all* cosmologies but will try
to reflect back to you for all of us to examine more closely):

	angels -- worthy of communication by virtue of connection
                  to the Creator God of the Universe;

	dogs -- unworthy of communication by virtue of limited
	        knowledge and insight; lower beings;

	toasters -- unworthy of communication by virtue of
                    absence of subjective experience/consciousness.

these are reasonable assumptions, and they proceed from common
enough axioms. my only comment is that they are limited to your
perspective and you may find differences with people who have
different cosmological presuppositions than you do, and 
agreement with those who share your views. I'm presuming at
this point that you aren't requiring that agreement in 
order to discuss angelic communication.

# ...we understand to be your little way of saying that "angels are
# a waste of time, like talking about talking toasters."....

I recommend that you do not presuppose my motivations or attitudes
toward you and others who have advocated communicating with angels.
it doesn't help us understand the subject any better, and it tends
to lead to my opposition to your entire cosmological platform
(which I notice tends to attract arrogance such as you are here
exhibiting and to which Tom has already referred quite amiably).

in fact, I may be one of the more likely to support you in any
future ridicule of your perspective, even though I do not find
evidence for a Creation, a Creator God, or a specific and 
completely isolated class of spirit you regard as 'angelic'.
# ...discourse on angels is important. because many of us feel 
# something beyond our ken is manifest in that which we call 
# Spirit....  we will always turn it around to: "What does this 
# have to do with angels?" 

a wonderful attitude. please remember that not everyone shares
the same perspective on the universe as you do, and just
because you don't understand how what is being said relates
to angels, that doesn't necessarily mean that it doesn't. I'll
applaud your return to the main topic of your forum and try
to assist you in always returning to the topic of angels 
no matter what I take angels to be, comparably. I'll try to
demonstrate that somewhat below. 

# Toasters have nothing to do with angels. And neither does
# talking to your dog.

the issue wasn't so much the category of being, although this
certainly did enter into my taxonomy for the purposes of
discussing the entire subject, which was COMMUNICATION.

that someone might undertake to communicate with unseen
things is relevant to angelic communications, and considering
with what *else* we might communicate in a similar manner, how
it compares in terms of the quality of communication and what
the different beings might say or know is truly relevant in
evaluating not only what an angel might be, but what special
qualities they might have over and above other agents.

#># What if 'fictional characters" literally exist in an
#># alternate reality?
#> these cosmologies are important to consider in an evaluation
#> of the ontological status of a communication. this is one of
#> the reasons that testing is suggested within certain contexts
#> (for example, the context of magical evocation or invocation).
# can one then make a magical invocation to say, David Copperfield 
# (the Dickensian character, not the magician), and get an answer? ...

this kind of question asks us to delve into our beliefs about the
universe, how things might work, what is possible, etc.  it has been
my intent to stand somewhat apart from this and analyze what it is
that angels represent to ALL of us as compared to other things. so 
your question here is a lead-in to that subject somewhat, however 
much you have already answered this question for yourself.

what I'm getting at here is that you are focussing on things 
that will underscore our DIFFERENCES, rather than what it is
that we AGREE on. I was attempting to find common areas of
agreement, and I think if you reflect on what I've created
that you can agree as to the ontological status of the classes
that I'm outlining (ignoring for the moment what their actual
capacity or value for psychic communication might be).

in the case of fictional characters, I don't find any evidence
for "multiple-universes" metaphysics, or for the ontological
(as compared with imaginary) reality of fictional beings, but
I'm not sure that there is an absolute dividing line, except
as constructed by each one of us, between unsensed real agents
and unsensed unreal agents. as Tom has made very clear, whether
that line exists may be unimportant when considering what it
is that IS HAPPENING.  i.e. the experience may be more 
important than establishing the truth of how they are described.

for those who assign a very real status to certain types of
unsensed agents, their reality becomes somewhat paramount, and
this is to what I was pointing above when I was describing
means of discerning their differences, why I was constructing
classes of beings (because we can construct tests to separate
them from one another in any ambiguous interaction). 

to put it to you from a paradigm from which you are approaching
the world (as far as I can tell), it ought to be rather an
important skill for you to be able to tell the difference
between angelic and some other type of communication.

if you think that only angelic psychic communication *can*
happen (i.e. that other types don't ever happen), then all of
this examination of the types of agents will of course seem to
you like a waste of time. to others who think differently but
*are* convinced of the value of such communications, your
dismissal of the taxonomy and methods may prove troublesome
and *contrary to a meaningful dialogue on the phenomenon of
communicating with angels*. you may be obstructing data on
the very thing you say you want to discuss in this forum.
I don't think you really want to do that.

# ...if one could manifest Bugs Bunny in front of oneself and
# witnesses, Bugs can no longer be regarded as fictional. 

here we enter into an area of agreement again, but your 
expression here is rather extreme and begins to take on the
aura of Goetic spirit-summoners. most who communicate with
angels, I'd guess, don't require physical manifestation.
if my guess is in error, I'd like to be informed of that.

# Unless you are telling us that EVERYTHING a magician 
# manifests is an illusion created by his or her own mind? 

that is one possibility. I'm not trying to draw out certain
truths about the world, only making some common references
to which we can ALL point in communicating about the event
of angelic communication (the focus of our coversation and
of the forum in which you make your base of operation). 

# In which case, only the Magician really exists.... 

I'm not really following your logic here. the communication
with fictional characters doesn't require all-or-nothing
categorical declarations about the universe. 'existence' is
too often the sticking-point in discussions about these
types of communications. more important, it seems to me, is
what level of reliability may be assigned to *any* class of
communicating agent, and how to go about establishing it.

# ...I am not smart enough to outsmart myself and come up 
# with answers from "angels" that somehow one part of me 
# knows but isn't letting another part in on. It would
# greatly enhance my ego to think I was personally smart 
# enough to give an answer on how to cure cancer or 
# something. I tend however to think that some other entity 
# which may be beyond my perceptions (human perception and
# consciousness being notoriously weak and fallible in the 
# first place), is telling me what I need to know. If they 
# then tell me they are angels. I take them at their word.
# They are invisible (unsensable?) and yet they seem to be
# smarter than I am.

then this describes well your assessment of what a certain
class of agents is, and how it relates to you. that's a
very rational way of approaching such communications (as
separate intelligences inasmuch as they seem separate and
capable of producing information you don't appear to have).

because someone else might not share that perspective does
no necessarily indicate that they are adverse to yours.

# ...if I talk to a doctor on a telephone is he an
# unsensable real agent? After all I cannot see, feel
# or smell the person. All I am truly hearing is a
# series of electronic patterns gauged to seem like
# sounds. Yet the information works.

now we're delving somewhat into the taxonomy that I was
creating in a way that is useful to us all. you've begun
to focus more clearly on the *means of communication*
and identified certain ambiguities in classification.

this is an indication that the classification system ought
to be REVISED, because, obviously, without *any* kind of
perception of the being with which we're communicating,
there would be no communication at ALL. therefore, instead
of "unsensed real agents" it should be "otherwise unsensed
real agents". unless they are intending that we are going
to communicate with them, we cannot sense them in any way.


1-- (imaginary)            unreal agents (mental or visual illusions)
2-- (otherwise unsensible) real   agents (noncorporeal entities)
3-- (living)               mobile agents (ambulatory organisms)
4-- (living)           stationary agents (rooted, static)
5-- (nonliving)                   agents (constructed or natural, static/mobile)

it is obviously NOT the case that the doctor on the phone is
otherwise unsensible. the communication method is the
transmission of sound over distance, rather than between
dimensions, and we are merely prevented from perceiving this
physical human being that is using a telecommunications device
by that distance. unless we presume that angels are also 
likewise distant or separated (not unreasonable), then the
communication with the doctor via distance constitutes a
different CLASS of conversation (in the above: CLASS 3 for
the doctor and CLASS 2 for the angel).

# Should I then feel I cannot call him a "doctor" because I did
# not see him or his credentials or even know if he exists? Of
# course not.

your question is a good one: because we have little information
about the being on the other side of the telephone, should we
be skeptical of his authority? I would say: YES!  that is, if
you have reason to believe that the voice on the other end of
the phone *is* a doctor (human physician at a distance), then
you've made an informed choice. however, if you randomly receive
a phone call from someone who claims to be a physician, should
you take his word for his authority? I'm not so sure that's wise.

this is the issue we're discussing with respect to angels also.
some consider it valuable to scrutinize the psychic connection
and apparent entity with whom we're speaking in order to more
reliably determine their authority. unless you have some reliable
way to always ascertain the status of that with which you establish
such a connection (i.e. your method determines its reliability,
like if you have a directory of physicians you can reliably dial
up on the phone), then the issue of identity may be important.

# We humans take a great many things on faith.

that is quite true, and this varies from person to person. whereas
you might take it on faith that any apparent entity with whom you
are interacting via your reliable method is an angel, there are
others who may rationally question the reliability of your method
and subject the agent communicating with them to some kind of test
before relying on advice from them in matters involving expertise.

# Angels are some of these things.

your broad generalization may be true for you, or you may not have
considered the numerous variables with which we are here dealing.

it is sometimes an emotional decision to have faith that one's
communication-contact is beneficent and helpful to one, but it is
also important to note that there are those who have so relied
upon agents that they *thought* served them well who were actually
either not of sufficient authority (impersonating it) or who
were actually attempting to deceive (manipulating the listener).

ignoring these possibilities is your choice, but it isn't
irrational to consider them seriously, and it need not be
an indicator of abject obstruction to bring them up with
respect to the subject of angelic communications. that I
and others may bring them up in conversations about this
topic is not, ipso facto, an indicator that we are just
trying to cause trouble or confuse the whole discussion.
in fact, I'm trying to broaden the topic and make 
room for a variety of perspectives of approach to 
it which your beliefs about it might not allow.

# I place little faith in either dogs or toasters to
# give me valid spiritual information.

once the category of the agent is established, one may easily use
whatever cosmological system one has ascertained exists to decide
how much authority to give that agent. it is *completely* reasonable
that you distinguish the authority of dogs and toasters from angels,
and those who contend against you for this decision may simply have
a different set of beliefs with respect to the universe than you do.

# So I say talk to your angels. And they will talk back.

once the ontological status of communication with angels is actually
established, and especially from your perspective, where angels are
reliable sources of information, then this makes sense, yes.

# Just like if you have a sore, talk to your doctor. If you
# have a banking problem, talk to your banker. Etc.

your analogy is falling a bit flat here. we haven't established that
angels are specialists in the same way that doctors or bankers are,
and what problem we may be experiencing that we may wish to find
and communicate with angels about. what is the complete analogy?
on what do you believe that angels are competent authorities?

# If I told people to talk to their toaster or their dog (which is
# where this stupid posting thread started...) that would be truly
# ludicrous.

only if one starts from the premises that you do. not everybody
agrees that the category of "angel" is so resolutely different
than that of "dog" or "toaster", however, or that their
ontological status (regardless of communication category)
is at all different from one another.

consider it from another angle (I'm trying to bridge perspectives
here): if dogs and toasters are *incapable* of psychic speech,
then the only options left in an established communication are
that an angel is impersonating them (something you have already
said is possible), or that some other category of agent is
initiating a conversation. once you have determined that there
is an actual entity on the 'other end of the line', your view of
the cosmos will help you come to terms with the type and therefore
the reliability of that agent. knowing what you do about angels
as compared to any other options, you might be able to establish
discerning criteria for establishing their trustworthiness,
such as I and others have begun to discuss.

the two options that I provided were consistency within some
pre-arranged symbolic framework, and the occurrence of what I've
called 'significant coincidence' in relation to that conversation.
if you have other methods of determining authority as compared to
impersonation, I'd like to hear about them. or if you believe
that all agents capable of establishing communication should be
regarded as angelic and as reliable, I'd be interested in hearing
why you believe that this is the case. thanks.


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