The Two Doors

The existential question that preoccupies each one of us can be thus summarized "Who am I?

Where I do come from? and Where am I going?"

Without claiming to answer these questions, we can clarify them through the knowledge ofthe Sufi masters, who teach us that there are, right beyond the physical world (called "Dja" inPersian), two worlds which concern us directly: the pre-physical world ("Dja Bolga" inPersian) and the post-physical world ("Dja bolsa").The post-physical world

The latter one is well known to all the occultists, magi and the other spiritualists in training under different names, the most used of which are those of "astral" or of "intermediate world." It is the purgatory of the Christians, the Bardo of the Buddhists, the hereafter all of the religions, the world of spirits, djinns, fairies, devils, and especially the world of the dead. It is the world, as its name indicates, where each of us will go after the physical death.

This astral world is in fact made up of a multitude of plans vibrating at different frequencies, and in a sense superimposed one on another on a vibratory scale going from low vibrations of the lower astral neighboring our physical world and populated with a multitude of djinns and disreputable creatures, up until the high vibrations of the superior astral, the residency of the evolved spirits about to pass over to the unlimited Spiritual world, which leads to the Divinity.

This astral world is as real and concrete for its inhabitants as the physical world in which we live is for us, even if the laws which govern it are a little bit different from those we are used to: thus time does not exist in the astral world, where one second is like a thousand earthly years. We know since Einstein’s theory of relativity that time is a subjective notion. If the astral world ignores time, the notion of distance there is also very different from down here, because cognition has there a force and a reality unknown to us: it is enough, in that hereafter to think of somebody to find ourselves in their presence, and to think of something to see that thought materialize before your eyes.

When we talk about eyes, it is naturally about of the astral body’s eyes! Indeed, each of us is endowed, besides a physical body, with an astral body, an invisible body often called soul, superimposed during the earthly life upon our elementary body and which gets loose from it on the day of death to continue its "life" in the astral world and this astral body is endowed with five senses too, but with senses adapted to the invisible world in which the soul in question lives. These senses of the soul, when they are partially developed during the physical life, are characterized as "sixth sense" and are responsible for the visions and for intuitions of psychics, as well as the voices of Joan of Arc, to take a famous example.

We very often neglect our soul (we shall say henceforth "soul" in the place of "astral body" to ease the text, since it involves the same thing) during our earthly life, because we do not know about its very existence, which, one must admit, manifests itself very little besides during sleep in the form of dreams, which are a recollection passed on to the brain by the soul when it returns to the body after an astral journey, that is a stroll in the invisible world during sleep, while the physical body restores its strength and fills up with energy after a day of activity.

But we are wrong to neglect our soul!

We are wrong because the soul is our true dwelling, it is the vehicle which we shall retain after death, the only thing which we can take on the other side of the veil, while we shall leave the body out of service just as we leave an old damaged and unusable car by the roadside. A door towards this astral world, or post-physical world, exists in each of us. If this door can open and be crossed in both directions during the earthly life, in particular during the sleep phase called dream, or still during the practice of self-hypnosis or meditation. This door towards the post-physical world closes for good after death, once the soul has left the physical body turned into a forever-unusable vehicle.

We thus unconsciously open this door every night when we dream, then we open it one last time at the time of our death, which corresponds to our definitive entrance into this astral world. Our evolution then continues on the other side, in the "place" which corresponds to our own capacity and to our nature: the more unrefined our soul, the more materialistic our aspirations, and the more we shall remain low very close to the physical world. Numerous dead never really leave our world, where they roam around the places of their past existence during what corresponds to hundreds of our years. They literally haunt their previous dwelling places, poor ghosts left behind and enticed by the things of this world.

Others rise towards various plans, where their evolution can continue, where they can learn and be useful, while some sink towards denser plans populated with demonic and harmful creatures, but corresponding to their own nature, by virtue of the principle "birds of a feather stick together".

What about reincarnation?

The Tibetan book of the dead, or "bardo thodol", describes the wanderings of the soul after death. Contrary to popular belief, this treatise of knowledge of the Tibetan lamas does not describe an immediate and systematic reincarnation, but indeed a journey of the soul in what it calls the "six worlds of impermanence" which correspond not only to the physical world, but also to the totality of the astral plans populated with spirits, angels, devils, and other diverse creatures.

Reincarnation, or return the soul in a new physical body, is a theory stemming from the interpretation of the activities of shamans and lamas: They are capable, by means of ascetic and esoteric practices, to enter in a state of trance or self-hypnosis, to leave their physical body, as in fact each of us unconsciously does during the phase of sleep called dream, and to move more or less at will in the invisible world which surrounds our physical world.

Now in this invisible world —which we called earlier "post-physical" since souls go there after death— the relationship to objects is very different from the one we know: On these levels of existence, knowledge is direct, that is that the pondering over an object is translated by a sort of unity with this object. Distance is abolished and the contemplator "is in unison" with the object of his contemplation, he lives it from the inside, feels all of its reality without it being slanted and distorted by perception from the sense organs, as in the physical world in which we live.

Thus, the lama in deep meditation who observes a person in his vision identifies completely with this person, he feels inside all of which this person has lived and all of his personality, himself becomes during his contemplative state that very person. That is why, when he returns to himself after his meditation, he is certain to have really been this person.

From this phenomenon to the theory of reincarnation, there is only one step which some have cheerfully crossed: the astral experiences, lived by the soul outside the physical body, are confused with experiences lived here on earth in a distant past, and we deducts from it that we have lived other lives before this one

In the world of the soul, time does not exist: past events are ordered next to the most recent events, without any chronological order.

Thus, in the astral world, when we think unconsciously of a period of history, we are propelled there at once and we live the events in the body of a person with which we identified during the time of the contemplative state. When we wake up, back from this vision, we naturally believe that we lived these scenes in a previous life in a distant past, while it happened in a parallel world, outside space and time!

As well as we can in theory, by using very powerful telescopes and modern astronomical tools, look in space at the first moments of creation, according to the principle of Einstein’s relativity, by virtue of the fact that light moves at a known constant speed: if we could faster fly than light, we would go back in time! 

The soul is capable of such an exploit. The speed of light is not a border to it and its field of investigations includes the past as well as the future.

Some have even gone as far as the theory of the metempsychosis, which is the reincarnation in plants or in animals, because in a state of deep meditation it is also possible to completely identify with a vegetable or an animal during the "time" of the experience in the invisible world.

Nevertheless, the supporters of the theory of systematic reincarnation will argue that there are numerous cases of very young children telling spontaneously to their stunned parents, with a wealth of details, stories from their previous life, when they were someone else, so much so that it has often been possible to verify the truthfulness of what they had told.

Likewise, the choice in Tibet of the "tulku", those young children chosen among so many others as reincarnation of recently deceased great lamas, meets numerous and very specific criteria: the child must identify personal belongings of the late master from a whole crowd of items, and the other lamas have confirmation of the reality of the "tulku" through their dreams and their meditative visions.

Now, there exists a little known phenomenon, often confused with reincarnation but which answers a different logic and that we could call "Connection", thus a spirit can connect in the soul of a newborn child by the force of spiritual attraction, either to complete its own evolution by living the earthly life experiences of the child in question, or to perform a spiritual mission which he was not able to complete during his own earthly life. The case of Tibetan "tulku" belongs of course to this second category.

The connection can furthermore be, depending on the case, occasional, temporary, for a shorter or longer duration according to the need, or permanent.

It is not, strictly speaking, a reincarnation, since the physical person to whom the spirit in question connects possesses its own soul. Simply the free spirit reestablishes contact with the soul of its host through the force of spiritual attraction: if we were talking about a ghost, we could say, as they would in popular language, that he is "possessed."

Certain Sufi mystics have criticized this reincarnationistic vision of the world, which they consider to appertain, as has been explained, to an erroneous interpretation of the pondering over the invisible

world. This vision of the world can become the pillar of a real ideology, which replaces in numerous circles other outdated ideologies such as Marxism-Leninism, and this philosophy can be interpreted

so as to drift towards a consequential vicious effect: the follower of this theory can adopt several attitudes. Either he accepts his sad lot for the reason that he is probably atoning for a bad karma accumulated during his previous lives and that it is necessary that he resigns himself to it, which would justify not only the system of casts such as is practiced in India, but also slavery… or he can, on the contrary, consider that all is permissible, including the worst dissipations, since he can always redeem himself later in a

future life, and so in ancient China, where reincarnation was collectively accepted by all, it was not rare to make debts in one life while planning to pay them off in a following one!

Such a generalized attitude can lead to the complete decline of a civilization in a few generations.

This ideology is very ancient: in certain highly materialistic primitive civilizations, people lived so with

the hope to return after their death to continue to take advantage of things of this world.

No Sufi text backs this theory of reincarnation, but numerous writings from masters such as Sohravardi and Avicenna (Ibn Sinna) explain the laws that govern birth, the stay on earth, death and evoke the continuance of the journey of the soul after death. According to them, everyone stays after death in the state in which his soul was during his physical life, and will be able to continue to evolve and to progress if he is in touch with a superior spirit, endowed with enough spiritual power to attract those onto like him upward, towards higher vibrations.

According to these texts, the material world is a one-way world, endowed with two doors: a front door from the pre-physical world, and a back door towards the post-physical world.

Between these two doors, the evolution of the soul is made in a single direction, with the spiritual energy flowing in a one-way duct under the influence of the forces of the invisible world, without ever being able to go back up towards its source, just like a stream which flows because of gravity and its water can never flow back up its course.

The post-physical world is thus a very vast world, constituted of a great deal of different plans of existence which never cross but overlap on different frequencies, a little like television channels, or simpler still the floors of a building. "There are many houses in the Realm of my Father" used to say Jesus.

At the time of death, three cases are possible according to the "density" of the soul of the deceased:

If the soul is very dense, heavy with a lot of unrefined and selfish attraction towards material things, it will be attracted downward, towards the lower astral worlds, which are more commonly called hells, just like a pebble sinks into the ocean.

If the soul is particularly light, almost free from animal drives and attracted towards spiritual things, it will be attracted upward, towards the high vibrations, by the electromagnetic forces of the invisible world, just like a rising balloon in the air.

In the case of an "average" soul, which represents the great majority of us, neither very heavy nor very light, nor very materialist, nor very spiritual, it will remain near the earth and the vibrations of this world during a more or less long time, and will float like an empty bottle on the ocean, and "will roam as a punished soul", as the time-honored expression says, until it eventually evolves in a direction or in the other, under the influence of the other spirits making it become aware of its state and of possibilities which avail themselves to it.

The pre-physical world

If the post-physical world is rich with the diversity of lived experiences and the evolutions of all the creatures that populate it, the pre-physical world is of a very different nature: it is the world of potentials, of things in a latent state, before their manifestation in the physical world, in the simplest possible state of existence. 

This world is like a source from which the purest and the simplest water would spring. When they pass into the material world, these things become more complex, their potentials are rejuvenated, just like a simple seed contains in it, in spite of its ostensible simplicity, all the potential characteristics of the tree that it may become if it is suitably exposed to the sun, watered and protected from the calamities.

If we follow through with the comparison, when the tree burns, it reaches the last stage of its evolution on earth, which corresponds to its dematerialization into carbon, while the invisible part passes in the post-physical world, as well as the soul parts from the physical body on the death of an individual.

This pre-physical world can be likened to the center of the creation, where from light originates which, when it reaches the tree, develops it through the process of photosynthesis and produces an added value: The tree will never become a seed again, its evolution is irreversible. The same goes for human beings…

This pre-physical world possesses a one-way door towards the material world, where souls become updated and develop in physical bodies.

Confessors (Soul doctors)

The great majority amongst us take care of their body: we exercise, we watch our nutrition and our environment to avoid pollution and nuisances, we go to the doctor for the slightest symptom, while we will live at the very most only a hundred years in this body which we try by all means to keep healthy.

On the other hand, only a tiny minority takes care of its soul, while we are going to live "in" this invisible soul during an infinite time!

There are simple rules to follow to strengthen the soul, or the astral body, or at least to avoid degrading it by an unsuitable behavior.

The whole thing is to know what to do exactly to feed and maintain the soul just as we maintain our physical body with food, sport and medicine.

He who takes no care of his soul during his earthly life, and the great majority doesn’t, will find himself very deprived as soon as he will arrive for good on the other side of the veil, and he will tell itself, upon realizing his past errors, "if only I had known…" It will be too late then, since the conditions of evolution of a disembodied soul (without physical body) are very different from the possibilities offered down here to an embodied human soul, like us all.

It is common to get vaccinated against the flu, for example, because we know it threatens to temporarily weaken our physical body, and we generally rely on our doctor to heal us in that case.

Flu has no impact on the soul.

On the other hand, very few trust the mystics, supposing they even know one, to remedy their soul, and spare it more durable damages caused by unsuitable behaviors stemming from the ignorance of what is good and what is nefarious to the invisible body we all possess and which constitutes, it is necessary to insist on it, our most precious good because it is our eternity vehicle: How can you go to the sky, if your plane is broken or worn out before it has been used? You should then stay and wait indefinitely for a improbable good Samaritan to be willing to come to your rescue… not a rejoicing perspective but nevertheless a realistic one when we see some current drifts on alcohol and drugs which literally annihilate the astral body!

The true mystic, the experimented master, sees the continuance of life beyond death. For him there is no veil between the world down here and the invisible post-physical world. He has the permission and the mission, mandated by the superior spirits who represent the divinity, to communicate to us what he sees without asking for a counterpart (otherwise he is a quack!) and to advise us on the personalized way to feed our soul.

These spiritual foods are different: Concentration on an image to fix the spirit and connect us to a spiritual source of energy, meditation to empty us of parasitic thoughts and detach us from things of this world, repeating a formula, strictly individual and corresponding to our nature and our need of the moment,

called "Zekr" by the dervishes, in order to raise the vibration rate of our soul and awaken its latent faculties, periods of possible fasts which, by giving a rest to the body’s digestive functions, not only allow to evacuate toxins, which is medically recognized, but also and especially help to strengthen the astral body, without forgetting the selection in its food, by avoiding as much as possible alcohol and certain meats like pork which blur and slow down the vibrating rhythm of the soul, thus possibly preventing it from rising towards more spiritual plans and confining it to the level of the lower astral, to the limits of this material world and to the level of the invisible creatures the company of which is certainly the least desirable. 

Naturally, the one who practices none of the exercises of the soul and who pays no attention to any such thing will undergo no immediate consequence and can even live happily and in a healthy physical health for a very long time. It does not nevertheless forebode on the state of his astral body: in reality, such as we see someone in this world today, so would we see him practically unchanged tomorrow, on the other side of the veil, if we could see in the invisible.

He who lives as a pig, will die as a pig, and on the other side he will be as a pig, nothing more.

The broken taboo

The attention paid to the soul and the questions connected to death has evolved considerably in the course of time. In ancient Egypt, for instance, death was an integral part of the inhabitants’ daily life. East of the Nile was the town of the alive, and West the Nile was the town of the dead, or necropolis, on the side of the setting sun. Ceremonies would revive the transition of the soul from the physical world towards the invisible world, symbolized by the crossing of the Nile on a boat. Numerous friezes of hieroglyphs represent the journey of the soul after death, which was not taboo like today, but represented on the contrary an essential stage of life, in which it was advisable to get ready by following the advice and the teachings of the priests of the time, great connoisseurs of things occult.

Nowadays, on the contrary, death occupies no place in the life of our contemporaries. All that could evoke the "big crossing" has carefully been erased or hidden from the eyes of people, so that nothing, in their every day life, ever reminds them of the questions relative to death. And when, by necessity, they think of it, they generally see nothing there but absolute darkness, and that darkness frightens them.

Come the fateful moment, everybody is destabilized, because nobody is prepared for the journey of the soul. The one who dies finds himself approximately in the situation of the one who would be forced to go out in the thick of the winter with no garment fit to the wintry weather. He would unavoidably greatly suffer great pains as well as major confusion from it, not to mention that those who stay behind also suffer because they are not ready to face this test. For them the separation is total and alarming, without real hope to see the deceased ever again.

The question is not even to believe or not to believe in the survival of the soul: those who do not see into the invisible do not generally want to hear or to accept what mystics capable of passing from a world to the other at will tell: "I have no eyes, so I do not want to open ears."

Strange reasoning! Yet, in the morning, before going out, everyone listens to the weather report, even if the meteorology services are wrong on average every other day, or half-opens a window to get an idea of the weather in order to dress consequently. But nobody worries about the hereafter and the conditions that are going to be found there as if it was impossible to know anything about it anyway… People behave down here as if they were going there to live one hundred thousand years, and prepare strictly nothing for their eternity.

Once being confronted with reality, what are they going to do?

The key to the dreams 

Those who seek answers to the questions relative to death and the hereafter should be attentive to their dreams. Indeed, the soul goes out of the body —or if we prefer the metaphor, the bird goes out of its cage— in three distinct moments:

* at the time of death,

* in sleep, which yields dreams,

* in state of deep meditation.

The fundamental difference between dreams and meditation is that the journey of the soul while asleep is totally uncontrollable, it goes there where its rate of vibrations and the magnetic currents carry it, whereas in a state of meditation, it is possible to control and to steer the astral journey.

During the physical life, while the soul is connected to a body, it is possible, for those who master techniques ad hoc, to travel in both worlds, not only the post-physical but also the prephysical world, in past as in future whereas after death, the door of the pre-physical world is definitively closed for the disembodied soul.

Even if they cannot be controlled, dreams are often rich in teachings. They provide us with messages coded in a specific language about the present or a more or less remote future, even concerning persons or events geographically very remote but close by thought, because thought contributes to steer the soul during its night-journeys. Depending on the concerns of the subject and the spiritual power of his soul, it can connect with the spirit of dead persons, with different invisible entities, or with spiritual masters, the latter by far preferable for the soul than the former two possibilities…

In ancient civilizations, dreams occupied a fundamental place in the knowledge and the understanding of the world.

In Sufism too, dreaming holds a central place in the arsenal at the walker’s disposal —also called "salek"— and his guide on the road of the spiritual evolution.

The student walker receives teachings and should dedicate himself to certain practices: reciting of the zekr, sort of prayer or magic formula, visualization and concentration on the image of his guide, meditation, and with repeated practice, the soul becomes used to the other world, doors open in front of it one after the other, and it begins to travel farther and farther and higher and higher, as its rate of vibrations accelerates and its spiritual capacities increase: once awake what the soul experiences during sleep returns to the consciousness under the form of dreams.

It is advisable then to note at once and accurately the details of the various dreams, before even switching on the light or getting up, because, in the state of half sleep, just at awakening time, dream memory is still very present, while some moments later, when awakening takes over, dream recollection quickly blurs, as if they were falling in inaccessible zones of the memory, pushed by the new ideas concerning worldly matters appearing upon awakening.

As soon as possible, the walker should tell his dreams to his guide and to him only.

It is indeed said that, if we tells our dreams to incompetent persons, they run the risk of erroneously interpreting them which, by insinuating itself into the minds, can negatively influence the achievement or the fulfillment of the dream in reality.

What we see in dreams works on a coded symbolic language, the knowledge of which is the privilege of those who have already made and ended the journey of the soul, in other words the masters, the authentic mystics, who are the only ones to possess the key of the dreams.

The master changes and adapts his teachings according to what the follower sees in his dreams. He can give a new zekr to his follower, add or call off drills, offer him counsel in the way of leading his life to allow him to avoid dangers, or to help his fellow men in trouble.

The master really steers his follower through his dreams, completed and confirmed by the master’s visions himself.

That is why the one who travels alone, without guide, will never be able to go very far. Certainly, he can practice techniques read in books, but he has hardly any chance to find the zekr that fits him and even less to change zekr at the opportune time, because he cannot interpret himself his dreams, unless he is already a master!

The master is not only a trainer, but also a translator.

In the Book of Kings, or "Shah Nameh", epic of antique Persia, the dreams also hold a top grade place.

The decisions in it appear to be based on dreams and their interpretation much more than on outside phenomena. The heroes there look for their Kings, their masters, their wives, war or reconciliation, mainly through their dreams.

Surprisingly for an epic, at least about twenty dreams are quoted and commented within, followed with their fulfillment in the material world.

Cases can be found where two opponents contemplate the same dream concerning a third person, try to act to influence the reality in their favor according to what they saw, but finally observe that they were not able to change anything during the history contemplated in advance in the realm of dreams.

Key Khosrow’s Story 

In very ancient times, Persia was governed by a bloodthirsty king by the name of Kavous who had a son named Siavosh, whose soul was very pure. He had sent him to war against the Turks. Siavosh had made peace with the Turks who had handed him over hostages of royal blood as guarantee. Kavous having ordered his son to kill mercilessly all the hostages, Siavosh, shocked by such a decision, refused categorically to execute the order of his father, and had no other choice than to go into exile amongst the Turks, where he was received as a prince and eventually married the king’s daughter. One night, Siavosh had a dream where he was going to be arrested and murdered by his father-in-law, the king of the Turks, leaving behind him a son, who would be called Key Khosrow, and who would avenge him.

At the same time, the king of the Turks had an identical dream that he was going to murder Siavosh, but that he would leave a son who would avenge him and would destroy his rule.

Very compelled by this dream, the king of the Turks decided to eliminate without delay his son-in-law Siavosh before he could have a child to eschew the fulfillment, disastrous for him, of his dream. He had the poor Siavosh murdered, but it was too late: his daughter was already carrying Siavosh’s son, who she christened Key Khosrow!

Then the king, pursued by the recollection of his dream, ordered his vizier to kill the royal child, his own grandson. The vizier pretended to comply, kidnapped the child at his birth, and took him far from there, amongst mountain dwellers who had just lost a baby, and returned to his king the corpse of the poor baby as proof of his obedience. Time passed… Persia was continually at war against the Turks but nobody knew that Key Khosrow, son of the prince of Persia and of the Turkish princess, was alive.

Fifteen years later, six thousand kilometers to the South, in the beautiful Persian town of Ispahan, an old knight named Goudarz had another dream where he saw that a descendant of Siavosh, his murdered prince, was alive, and he saw his face and his name: Key Khosrow.

Goudarz had a son named Guive who was a young and brave knight to whom he entrusted the very important mission to leave for Turkey in search of Key Khosrow. One might just as well look for a needle in a haystack, or for a droplet in the ocean! Guive crisscrossed the campaigns and mountains of Turkey, without ever approaching cities not to be recognized and captured. He roamed so during seven years, feeding on herbs and wild fruits, to the point of losing hope entirely, and without giving sign of life to his father left behind in the country, and eventually thinking that his father’s dream had no meaning.

During this time, the king of the Turks, having had wind of something, found Key Khosrow and made him come in his palace to interrogate him. But the vizier had had the time to advise Key Khosrow to play the simple-minded, which he did marvelously. The king, reassured when he observed that this poor herdsman was totally harmless, dismissed him to his mountains and left him in peace.

Out of breath and desperate, Guive reached a spring next to which he noticed a young man who told him: "Are you Guive? Are you in search of Key Khosrow?" Very impressed, Guive wondered: "Yes, my name is Guive and I look for Key Khosrow! But how do you know all of that?" "I am Key Khosrow," continued the young man, "and I saw my father in dream, which told me that a knight named Guive would come to look for me, and he gave me your description." Guive who remembered his father Goudarz’s description of Key Khosrow following his dream asked: "If you are Key Khosrow, you should have a mole behind your shoulder". Key Khosrow showed his shoulder to Guive, who was even to personally verify the presence of the mole seen by his father in dream seven years earlier…Guive then took Key Khosrow to Persia, the homeland of his father Siavosh, as his own father Goudarz had instructed him.

A little while later, the old king of Persia, Kavous, abdicated in favor of his found grandson, Key Khosrow who raised a powerful army, attacked the Turks and killed the king of the Turks whose rule he annihilated, thus avenging the death of his murdered father Siavosh, and fulfilling the second part of the simultaneous dreams Siavosh and the king of Turks had had many years earlier!

This story extending over several generations shows well the supernatural connections beyond time and space among persons and events. The actions of each are guided and conditioned by dreams that are taken very seriously to the point of prompting the murder of their own children and grandchildren!

Very precise details, such as the names of the future heroes, and features of their face, are seen in dream by protagonists incapable to modify in their favor the course of history which they would like to bend. They remain the puppet of forces which supersede them and guide their steps and actions, in the service of a fate which comes true nevertheless, and with their assistance, integrating their reactions to the vision of the dreams which are shown to them. In fact, everything in the "Shah Nameh" takes place in the invisible world at first, the world of dreams, well before taking place on earth which is only the field of fulfillment of events written somewhere else by superior powers directing the fulfillment of these events through the medium of the dream, the royal portal between both worlds, the invisible world or the world of souls and the material world down here. 

bonyad@erfan-gonabadi.com