This article came cross my news feed and of course I saw the link to my past and between lives work. The article, "The New Science of Psychedelics"by Michael Pollan, referenced recent studies that showed promise for sufferers of depression, anxiety, and addiction and how therapeutic use of LSD and psilocybin is changing long held beliefs on how the mind works. Now I am not advocating using drugs for spiritual development (though the concept of micro-dosing as a nootropic is fascinating) but this sentence about the mystical experience after a high-dose LSD session jumped out:
"Typically described as the dissolution of one's ego followed by a merging of the self with nature or the universe, a mystical experience can permanently shift a person's perspective and priorities.* The pivotal role of the mystical experience points to something novel about psychedelic therapy: It depends for its success not strictly on the action of the chemical but on the powerful pyschological experience that the chemical can occasion."
I propose that a much more direct method of experiencing the "dissolution of one's ego" is by an immersive past life exploration and following one's consciousness through the transition from the physical to the NPE, the Non-Physical Experience between lives. While the ego may sometimes linger past the death of the body, it eventually releases to the continuity of consciousness in the between lives state that is the ultimate "merging of the self with... the universe." The past and between lives journey offered by using the Awareness Techniques can be a profound mystical experience, it is reliably reproducible and there are no drugs involved. And once we have integrated our physical self with our higher self that has lived many lives, our perspective and priorities can shift if we allow them. The answers indeed are within.
Update - 5/14-
Salon's Laura Miller reviewed Pollan's book and this quote popped out that made me appreciate this book even more. Referring to the Default Mode Network and the cognitive patterns that psychedelics temporarily overturn:
"As Pollan explains it, these disorders are the result of mental and emotional 'grooves' in our thinking that have become, as the DMN's (Default Mode Network) name suggests, default. We are how we think. The right psychedelic experience can level out the grooves, enabling a person to make new cerebral connections and briefly escape from 'a rigidity in our thinking that is psychologically destructive."
I propose that exploring our past and between lives experiences are an effective way to make new cerebral connections and escape rigidity in our thinking.
*The most interesting aspect of the research is that "they were surprised that the chemical, which they assumed would boost brain activity, actually reduced it." Quoting Aldous Huxley on his psychedelic journey in 1954: "For the moment, that interfering neurotic who, in waking hours, tries to run the show, was blessedly out of the way." Pollan's article is an excerpt from his upcoming book "How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Dying, Addiction, Depression and Transcendence."