There really is room for a conversation between physicists and students of metaphysics. We just have to be reasonable — and patient on both sides. If we can do that, the payoff may be extraordinary.
Neville Goddard was perhaps the last century’s most intellectually substantive and charismatic purveyor of the philosophy generally called New Thought, a spiritual vision that says everything you see and experience, including other people, is the result of your own thoughts and emotional states.
New Age royalty Ptolemy Tompkins is the acclaimed writer of Paradise Fever, and other books on Mesoamerican spirituality, the mysticism of nature, and the question of extra-physical survival. In this interview, I ask him about the reality of heaven and hell, how to verify life after death, and the spiritual practice of underlining things in books.
I am interested in formulating a tough-minded, intellectually defensible, and useful distillation of New Thought ideas. But make no mistake: I am not interested in intellectualizing New Thought. I am interested in using it. And, if I’m able, in helping my neighbor to do the same.
Many of us engage in superstitious rituals — like saying “God Bless You” when someone sneezes, or exercising extreme caution around mirrors — without being able to explain why. In the video series “Origins: Superstitions,” filmmaker Ronni Thomas and I explore the origins of some of the most enduring superstitions.
As the 1950s wore on, the occult could seem like something of a spent force in American life. Foes of Spiritualism had exposed one mediumistic fraud after another. By the end of the decade, the occult could appear to be little more than an amalgam of eccentrics and loners. A new voice was needed. And it arrived just as the cusp of the 1960s came into sight.