I understand that the ancient mysteries of death and rebirth,
and also the rites of passage of the native cultures,
enabled people to go through a kind of dying before dying.
The 17th-century German Augustinian monk Abraham of Santa Clara
put it very succinctly: ‘The man who dies before he dies
does not die when he dies.’
Once you have this experience,
you do not see death as the end of who you are,
but as a fantastic journey, as a transition
to a different mode and level of existence.
Whether this is a profound cosmic truth or a merciful delusion,
as some of the materialistic critics of transpersonal psychology assert,
it can certainly transform people’s lives.
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