233. Panel Discussion on Refined (“Celestial”) Perception

Celestial Perception Painting by Harri Aalto

The iconography and texts of most spiritual traditions depict and describe realms of existence more subtle than ordinary sensory perception reveals. The most commonly portrayed phenomena are halos in paintings of saints. But in addition to this evidence of the human “subtle body”, the traditions are abundant with paintings and stories of subtle beings such as angels, gods, devas, demons, etc.

Is this mere mythology or does it suggest that subtle perception is part of spiritual development? So far, the non-dual community has not discussed this at all. The New Age community has, but often in a fanciful way that the non-dual community has, perhaps wisely, chosen to eschew. Yet many who have had abiding awakenings that non-dual traditions predict and respect discover, in time, that subtle perception begins to dawn. They begin to perceive auras, angels, devas, and the like as routinely as most of us see other human beings.

This panel discussion included five such people:

 NameWebsiteOther Batgap Interviews
Francis Bennett8/4/2012, 4/21/2013* 10/26/2013*, 5/24/2014*, 10/23/2014*, 10/22/2015*, 10/21/2016, 10/25/2016*
Harri Aaltoharriaalto.com3/22/2014, 7/19/2014, 11/12/2016
Kristin Kirkkristinkirk.com11/2/2013, 10/22/2015*
Ruffina Farrokh Anklesariabestagainststress.com
Facebook page
Stan Kendzstankendz.com12/2/2009

*Part of group discussion

We discussed:

  • what subtle or “celestial” perception is,
  • its relevance to spiritual awakening,
  • whether it is an inevitable development on the path or a special aptitude like musical or athletic ability,
  • the nature of our relationship with the beings which reside on subtler levels of creation. Do we and they support each other in some way?
  • whether subtle perception should be intentionally cultivated or whether it will develop on its own if and when it is meant to. If it can be developed, what are the prerequisites to and stages of its development?

Transcript of this discussion

Recorded 5/24/2014

Video and audio below. Audio also available as a Podcast.