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When the Impossible Happens
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When the Impossible Happens [Format Kindle]

Stanislav Grof

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Présentation de l'éditeur

Feelings of oneness with other people, nature, and the universe. Encounters with extraterrestrials, deities, and demons. Out-of-body experiences and past-life memories. Science casts a skeptical eye. But Dr. Stanislav Grof—the psychiatric researcher who cofounded transpersonal psychology—believes otherwise. When the Impossible Happens presents Dr. Grof 's mesmerizing firsthand account of over 50 years of inquiry into waters uncharted by classical psychology, one that will leave readers questioning the very fabric of our existence. From his first LSD session that gave him a glimpse of cosmic consciousness to his latest work with Holotropic Breathwork, When the Impossible Happens will amaze readers with vivid explorations of topics such as:

  • “Temptations of a Non-Local Universe—experiments in astral projection
  • “Praying Mantis in Manhattan” and other tales of synchronicity
  • “Trailing Clouds of Glory—remembering birth and prenatal life
  • “Dying and Beyond”—survival of consciousness after death

Here is an incredible opportunity to journey beyond ordinary consciousness—guaranteed to shake the foundations of what we assume to be reality—and sure to offer a new vision of our human potential, as we contemplate When the Impossible Happens.

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.2 étoiles sur 5  32 commentaires
95 internautes sur 100 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Paradigm Busters 8 décembre 2006
Par Renn Butler - Publié sur
Stan Grof's new book, "When the Impossible Happens," has become an instant transpersonal classic. The most personable and accessible of his many projects, I recommend this book enthusiastically to anyone interested in human consciousness, including the study of synchronicities, pre- and perinatal experiences, racial and collective memories, ESP and paranormal abilities, karma and reincarnation, the convergence of science and mysticism, and survival of consciousness after death.

Drawing upon fifty years of disciplined research into the extraordinary properties of the human psyche, Grof presents a series of representative experiences of himself, his colleagues, and his patients of powerful journeys in non-ordinary or holotropic ("moving toward wholeness") states of consciousness. The content of many of these experiences were then objectively verified afterward, often to incredible surprise. These included obstetric details from birth, experiences of the subject's mother during pregnancy, obscure episodes from the lives of parents and ancestors, unknowable details from past lives, minute physiological characteristics of various animal and plant species, arcane details of world mythologies of which the subject clearly had no prior knowledge, and many other examples. A number of these fit the criteria for later objective verification through hospital records or research libraries; that is, they have the credibility of paradigm busters. The sheer volume and quality of these remarkable documented experiences suggest a radical revisioning of the outmoded mechanistic and monistic vision of reality, and point instead toward a cosmos governed by higher intelligence, numinous meaning, and even sophisticated humor.

What makes this book so special is the depth of personal sharing. While Grof dutifully and carefully presented in previous books the implications of his many years of research, his career trajectory and perhaps the entire culture have finally reached a tipping point where the "anomalous" clinical facts can be openly shared with much more personal color, vivacity, and self-referencing irony. I felt I learned more about the inner flavor of Grof's own life from this book than from all his other writing combined, a life of exceptional quality, depth, and service to others. He describes his first LSD session in Prague in 1956 in which he was taken on a profoundly unexpected journey into cosmic consciousness, spontaneous spiritual experiences in the presence of his wife's guru, Swami Muktananda, his involvement in the making of the movie Brainstorm, inspired umbanda ceremonies, UFO's in the Amazon, and incredible terrifying experiments in astral projection.

He recalls breakthrough LSD sessions and celebratory vodka parties with Russian colleagues in '60's Leningrad, earthy centenarian shamans at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, psychedelic toads in the Arizona desert, past lives spent in Ukranian monasteries and ancient Egypt, his auspicious yet doomed fairytale wedding in Iceland, life-changing contact with Absolute Consciousness, and his frustrated search for the infamous Mayan Crystal Skull. Grof covers this rich experiential territory with the disciplined curiosity of a seasoned connoisseur. Here are vivid psychedelic adventures on every continent - magnificent sunsets at Ayers Rock in Australia, death-rebirth sequences in pre-Columbian sites in Mexico, gorgeous psychedelic sunrises off the coast of Rio de Janeiro. He describes influential friendships and collaborations with his partner Christina, astrologer Richard Tarnas, and mythologist Joseph Campbell, meetings with archetypal figures such as Czech Republic President Václav Havel, Sai Baba, Mother Teresa, and Carl Sagan, and star-studded conferences of the International Transpersonal Association held on every continent. Grof remembers with us a lifetime of exquisite culinary feasts, spectacular natural panoramas, forays into the world's great art museums, and sampling of exotic psychoactive compounds from the planet's rich pharmacopoeia.

Above all, he describes the dramatic healing effects of inner self-exploration, both with psychedelics and with comparable non-drug techniques such as Holotropic Breathwork. Deep and systematic exploration of this type has resulted consistently in emotional and psychosomatic healing, spiritual awakening, and spontaneous emergence of positive ecological and humanitarian values. This type of transformation in sufficient numbers, Grof convincingly asserts, may be an important missing ingredient enhancing our species' chances for survival.
30 internautes sur 34 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent! 4 janvier 2007
Par Isis - Publié sur
Grof describes in a very intimate and almost autobiographical manner his experiences with witnessing altered states of consciousness in others (namely his patients) and his own experiences with non-ordinary reality. It is a fantastic read, truly an adventure into this rarely explored part of the subconscious mind. I also thought he was quite brave in his candor in revealing his own experiences, particularly as a person from a traditional medical/psychiatric background. His work and explorations, I feel, are ground breaking and opens up a whole realm of possibilities for future work in the study of the human psyche. His book shows that we are truly much more than we could ever imagine we are! I highly recommend it.
26 internautes sur 29 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Light but entertaining read 19 juin 2007
Par P. Strayer - Publié sur
Most of Stan Grof's books are full of Big Thoughts, but this one is on the light side. Good bedside reading. Short chapters are just the right size for a one a night rhythm.
11 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 And important stepping stone to a new Universal Vision 29 novembre 2007
Par Sharon Moriarty - Publié sur
Grof throws it all at you in this delightful little book on consciousness and transpersonal psychology, which is also an easy read. He discusses and elaborates on many topics that are of interest in exploring paradigm shifting views on the nature of consciousness and existence and so migrating us out of the straight jacket of materialistic monism and Freudian psychology, that have so dominated western thinking.

Topics reviewed include Holotropic breathwork, Crop Circles, Siddha Yoga, LSD and Ketamine Based therapy sessions, past life regression therapy, Synchronicities, Shamanic Influences, Primal Therapy, ESP, Remote viewing, Basic Perinatal Matrices (BPM), Astrological Archetypes etc. and it is mostly through direct experiential based vignetttes garnered from the authors 50 years in the field.

The Holotropic breathwork itself seems like a variant on Osho's dynamic kundalini pranayama, and active meditations that is combined with music. Knowing from my own experience the relationship between breathing rhythm and the quality and one's conscious state and moods, ( a fact that is also known for millennia from the teachings of Siddhas such as Thirumoolar), it is highly likely that it can be used to raise deep unconscious and traumatic states so that they can be therapeutically resolved. Just like people remember things based on a trigger from the time the memory was implanted, each traumatic event in a person past life or past lives will have its own characteristic breathing rhythm and going into this upsetting breathing rhythm can be used as a trigger to raise it once again. Unfortunately, in this book Grof does not go into too much detail on how the mechanics of this breathwork but does describe some stories of those who were able to use successfully to heal themselves from trauma or phobias developed in the birth canal and in past lives.

The LSD experiences he describes paint reality in the same words as those of the yogic Siddhas, namely that the real world a highly expansive interconnected infinite and spaceless intelligence capable of manifold manifestations and meanings. That it is never separate from the experiencer but a is a vast phenomenal game of play of the cosmic consciousness. That the apparent separation and sedimentations of objects arises out of conditioning and dullness and lack of flexibility in the conscious apparatus. That LSD can be used to alleviate this dullness and conditioning temporarily and so dehypnotize one from the dream of separation and limitations. That the experiences induced by it are not neurochemical artifacts, symptoms of a toxic psychosis as mainstream psychologists called it, but genuine manifestations of the human psyche itself. Personally, I use yoga, pranayama and meditation to achieve the same results.

On one occasion, in an LSD session, and OBE the author takes a trip to his mother's house and the experience is so real, that he believes like in the dream of Chuang Tzu that it is his life in America that is a dream. He considers taking back a picture from the house to proof to himself that the nature of the world is entirely dream but is fearful that he may find out something he doesn't want to know and messing with powers beyond his conscious abilities to assimilate. He should have took the picture, and then he would have known that all is dream. Also, there are no powers to be fearful off because there are no devilish mystic archetypes or black forces beyond your own mind. Unpowered by your mind, they dissolve into nothingness.

In another experience, he describes a ketamine session in which he experiences identification with petroleum as an evil metaphysical archetypal entity and later he says "I became every jew in the nazi gas chambers, every sprayed ant and cockroach, every fly caught in the sticky goo of the fly-traps". I think the author needs to make a clearer distinction here, that he did not become these things, in his Ketamine session, he has just achieved a clear and noise free perspective as one gets in the Eka Grata state of consciousness. You can experience things close up and real, to the exclusion of all else. However, you are still only experiencing it from the outside and so seeing only surfaces and heightened sensory perceptions and thought superimpositions based on your understandings and unconscious reservoir of experiences- you are not experiencing it from within as it is in the field of the one-consciousness. This is a qualitatively different experience.

In another session, he experiences himself becoming a towel at a neighboring swimming pool in Esalen, and seeing all those at the pool and watching all that was going on. This is a remote viewing experiencing and he says later those at the pool validated what he saw and experienced and he takes this as indicative of proof that he did astrally project and have an OBE.

However, I feel the author may need to take the quantum leap in consciousness into better understanding himself on this one and in so doing transmigrating his current conscious onthological vision.

Consciousness does not go out and astrally project or have OBEs etc. It is always stationary, what changes is that different perspectives and views are brought into the field of consciousness as the objects of consciousness. I feel the author still things that consciousness (transpersonal or to alternative) exists in the field of the world and travels around it freely - he needs to make the radical revision that the world exists only in his field of consciousness. A Course in Miracles says this very succinctly in the line "Ideas leave not their Source" . Remote viewing works because all mind is joined and this mind is spaceless, - moreover there are no objects and no world apart from mind - they represent just projections of thoughts. It is this that makes it possible to experience things in remote corner of the world from your own living room. The Zen folk say this also very clearly when they say "No Vehicle - is the Great Vehicle of Zen" and the Buddha is one who travels all day without traveling anywhere at all.

In this case, he simply brought the experience of the being a towel at the swimming pool and his friends there into his field of consciousness. It is a conscious substitution interposing one thought stream with another and not a going out of mind. Their words and actions just represent his own ideas projected out of his mind - afterwards they have to validate what he saw because there is no "they" and no out-there - just his own mind validating his own thoughts and conscious experience at a later time.

Anyway, thought the book was a thought provoking read but good conceptual content and is open to later validation by each reader by their own direct experiences. It represents new life and oxygen and a major revision to the stuffy, reactionary, conditioned and positively Victorian and Pavlovian thought systems underscored by current psychological modalites that depend heavily on neuroleptic bombardment, Freudian psychology and rigid DSM IV diagnoses.
5 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An open mind ponders the possibilities 22 février 2010
Par M. Mann - Publié sur
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
I like the book. The subjects are fascinating and Grof tells his anecdotes well. I would love to see more formal statistical modeling of the anecdotal evidence.

There is a dichotomy between the anecdotal and the modern scientific view that is most excellently expressed in the anecdotal story of the author's meeting with Carl Sagan. Sagan actually shows his bias and a lack of scientific inquiry. There is room on the boat for all ideas, and Sagan shows typical scientific arrogance when it comes to discussing ideas that are beyond his scientific expertise. "I just know it's wrong" is not a scientific argument.

Grof likewise fails us with his lack of statistical data that back up his claims, expecting us to see his anecdotes as evidence when in reality his data hold nothing more than face value. Without data, the anecdote becomes just one more datum without a hypothesis. Great stories, but what are they REALLY about?
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