The Small Still Voice Within

One cold day in early 1980, I was waiting at a bus stop. At that time, I had about a dozen OBEs to my credit. I thought about my favorite television show, "Kung Fu," which always had tidbits of wisdom sprinkled throughout the show. The Shaolin masters in the show were always portrayed as kind and humble, but above all wise. I wished I could be wise like that. Then I remembered a story in the Bible about Solomon (1 Kings, 3: 5-13). In the story, God offered to give Solomon anything and Solomon chose the gift of wisdom. Solomon was rewarded well for his choice. I wondered what it would be like if I were wise: "If I were wise," I thought to myself, "I could probably think up any question and look inside and find a truly wise answer there."

If I were a wise man and someone asked me questions, what would I say? I started to fantasize, asking myself philosophical questions and making up answers, pretending I was wise. Suppose they asked, "What is love?" I paused to think. I'd say, "Love is the binding force of the Universe." If they asked "Who am I?" I would answer, "You are a spark of God's divine Light."

My bus wasn't there, so I continued with this daydream. I asked myself more questions. Each time I'd look deeper into myself for the answer. After a few times I was surprised at the answers I came up with; the answers didn't seem like me at all! At the time, nothing seemed out of the ordinary, so I didn't even write about it in my journal.

This "wisdom" game was a lot of fun, so the next few days I practiced whenever I had free time. Instead of asking specific questions, I started asking myself to "Say something wise." This also gave me unexpected results, such as:

Perfect love is never selfish. It's wrong not to love at all. It is better to love someone and selfishly desire their love. It is still better to love someone, and desire to give them your love, asking nothing in return. It is best to love All That Is unselfishly, and recognize everything as a part of that creation, including your loved one and yourself.

Upon closer examination, I didn't exactly make up "words" in my head when I asked myself questions. I got a jumble of thoughts, feelings, words, sounds and images, and I "translated" this jumble into words. Then I said the translated words to myself, and somehow they made sense. Later, this translation process became so automatic that it was just like "talking."

I had learned to ask myself questions, and come up with answers, but I was very skeptical about it. It seemed as if I were pretty much "making up" the answers I wanted, even if the answers often had a lot more "insight" than I thought I had. The answers just came to me from the top of my head. They only came when I asked, and often they were the first things that entered my mind after I formulated the question. For that reason, I viewed this all as a "game" I was playing, never taking it seriously.

Then the inner source of wisdom started to develop a personality of its own. Very gradually I started noticing that I was sometimes getting "answers" without asking questions. I started getting advice and reminders from within, which would come out of the blue.

I noticed that the answers addressed me in the second person; instead of receiving the message, "I should park over there" I would receive the message, "You should park over there, Bob." Also, the answers started getting more specific. Messages like, "You should park over there" became "You should park over there, because there's more time on that parking meter than this one." Later, these things turned out to be true. At first I thought I might be going crazy. Crazy people heard voices. But as I said before, I wasn't really hearing voices; I was just getting impressions and translating them into words. Then I began to worry about spirits.

So one day I decided to probe a little deeper into this issue. One day after I left work, I went for a short walk and started asking this "source" some new questions:

Q: "What is your name?"

A: "You can call me anything you like."

Q: "Do you have a name?"

A: "Names are not important; wisdom is important. Remember, the message is important, not the source."

Q: "Are you a spirit?"

A: "No, not as you think of it."

Q: "Then what are you?"

A: "Someone who has your best interests at heart: I am you; another part of you."

Q: "Why are you here? Why am I hearing you?"

A: "My job is to help you in any way that I can, to help you become more aware, to see that you pay attention to the lessons that you are learning."

Q: "If you're me, than why do you address me as 'you'?"

A: "That's to help you tell the difference between your own thoughts and my messages."

Because of some book I had read, I started calling it my "inner voice." For months I distrusted my inner voice. Sometimes I would take its advice and sometimes I would not. Time after time, my inner voice proved its guidance was sound, but still I would not trust it. And because I was afraid of what people would think, I never told anyone.

One day my inner voice started speaking with me, saying, "Why do you constantly fight me?" I replied, "I just don't trust you; I've heard of stories where insane people murder and later say that 'God' or 'Voices' told them to kill. If you ask me, any kind of nonverbal communication seems really strange to me; if anyone knew I talked to a voice inside of me, they would lock me up." My inner voice replied, "Have I ever told you to kill people? No! Have I ever told you a lie? No! Have I ever given you any reason to mistrust me? No! Has anything I've said ever been wrong? No!"

It continued. "Always remember this: It is okay to listen to your inner voice, and it is okay to take its advice, but always, always use your own judgment. You are not allowed to use me as an excuse for not taking action, or for taking an action, or for not using your own judgment. As long as you use your own common sense and judgment, you aren't going to murder people, because common sense tells you that murder is wrong."

"I am here to give you advice and helpful hints. I can give you answers to any questions, provided those questions are not part of your current lessons. For some lessons, you must find the answers for yourself."

"What I am asking is very simple. Try an experiment: try trusting me and taking my advice (while still using your own judgment and common sense) for one week, without fighting me. After one week, if I've lied to you or misguided you, feel free to ignore me. However, if my advice has been good, you can take this as far as you want."

I agreed to the experiment, and I started following the advice of my inner voice. One week passed and my psychic awareness increased. I decided I would continue to trust my inner voice until it gave me reasons to distrust it.

That was the beginning of a new cooperation between me and my inner voice: It started giving me more advice, helping me interpret my dreams and reminding me of things I had forgotten. For example, one morning I had gotten my motorcycle out of the garage to go to work when my inner voice said to bring my bag of tools with me--"It'll come in handy today; You'll regret it if you don't." So I got off my motorcycle, walked back inside and got my tool bag. I asked my inner voice if my motorcycle was going to run into mechanical problems. It replied, "Your motorcycle is fine." "Then why should I bring tools?" "Trust me. You'll regret it if you don't." Later that day, as I pulled into a parking spot, I noticed a man with a stalled truck. I asked, "Having truck problems?" He said, "Yeah. You haven't got a Phillips screwdriver on you, do you?" I got out the tool bag and gave him a screwdriver. I was glad I had brought the tools, and I thanked my inner voice. It was right--I would have regretted it if I had not brought the tools.

My inner voice is often fond of helping people. For example, one day I went to my credit union, but I arrived ten minutes before they opened. I walked down the street, wondering what I should do to kill the time. Then my inner voice asked me to go into MacDonalds, which was in the opposite direction. So I walked to MacDonalds and went inside. The man in front of me ordered some coffee, but his speech was very slurred because he was deaf. The man repeated himself several times, but the cashier didn't understand. I knew a bit of American Sign Language, so I acted as translator to allow him to speak with his cashier. After I left the restaurant, I felt good inside. My inner voice congratulated me for a job well done.

My inner voice also provided me with "psychic" information I could not have known otherwise. One day I decided to eat lunch in the cafeteria. I stood in line trying to decide what flavor of yogurt to buy. Finally I decided to get blueberry yogurt, so I picked up a container. Then my inner voice said, "Boysenberry." I asked my inner voice, "Do you mean I should switch?" It replied "That's okay. Eat what you like." So I decided to keep my blueberry yogurt. I sat down and opened it, and there was boysenberry flavored yogurt inside! The carton was plainly marked "Blueberry" and the carton was deep blue. But the yogurt inside was purple boysenberry.

My inner voice carefully guided my actions, and it always worked out to my advantage. This journal entry from 1985 shows what I mean:

02-09-85 Sat

More "Psychic" events. About a month ago I found out that Boston (the rock group) had a member named Barry Goudreau, who put out an album. Since I'm a fan of Boston I tried to find the album, but it was out of print. I went to every record store I knew in the Minneapolis and St. Paul area, but nobody had it. I told JO that I'd mail her a copy of the album on cassette tape if I ever found it. Well, I was going to mail another tape to JO today, and my inner voice was very active.

First I had to go to an office-supply store to find a mailer to mail the tape in. I went and found a perfect-sized mailer, and was going to buy one, when my inner voice said, "Get two!" I asked it, "Why? I'm not planning to send any more tapes for a while." My inner voice just said, "Just get two; I'm sure you can find a use for the second one." I was in a hurry, so I didn't argue with my inner voice, I just bought two, without any plans to send another tape. When I went to the post office, I got the best parking spot, when all of the other available parking was taken. My inner voice suggested before I left from home that I should make some copies of the latest MSPR [Minnesota Society for Parapsychological Research] newsletter. So after I left the post office, I went to the University to make more copies of the newsletter. As fate would have it, I couldn't find a parking spot except two blocks away from the print shop. My inner voice said, "Park here; it's not that far to walk." So I parked there, and started walking to the print shop. On the way, I noticed something interesting in a shop window, so I looked at the shop. It was a record shop, a very tiny one I didn't know about and one I'd never been in. My inner voice said, "Go in. The newsletters will wait." So I went in. It was a very small record shop, but there was a section that said "ON SALE." My inner voice said, "Go over there and look in the "G's." I replied mentally, "Oh come on! I hunted in every record store in Minnesota for Barry Goudreau's album; this tiny store won't have it, and they wouldn't have it on sale!" But I thought, "Oh what the heck, it doesn't hurt to look." Sure enough, I had been very carefully guided to find Barry Goudreau's album, and it only cost me $2.19! I told the shop owner that I'd been hunting high and low for that album, and had been to almost every record store in the Twin Cities, and couldn't find it anywhere. He said, "Really? That's interesting. And now you found it on sale."

Then I made the copies of the newsletter. I came out of the print shop and I remembered that I never fed my parking meter. My inner voice said, "Don't worry about it. Go over to JRCA and buy some tapes to record the album." I argued back, "But my parking meter is expired, and JRCA's tapes are not as cheap as Best Buy. I could go to my car, save myself a ticket and get tapes at Best Buy for $2.00 each, whereas JRCA tapes are usually $2.50 each." But my inner voice insisted that I go to JRCA. Despite always arguing with my inner voice, it always knows what is best for me. I went to JRCA, and asked "How much are your Maxell UDXL-II's?" The man went and grabbed four tapes (I wanted to buy four tapes, but I didn't tell him that!) He told me the tapes were $1.99 each! I only had $9.00 left, so I had just enough money to buy four tapes! I got back to my car. No ticket!

My inner voice has been responsible for much of the "psychic" information I have received. In many ways, it seems like "cheating" because I don't have to work for this information; it's there for the asking.

I also found out my inner voice had a sense of humor. One morning I wrote down an out-of-body experience and I lost track of the time. When I realized I was running behind, I left in a hurry. I bolted out the door when my inner voice suddenly interrupted, "Hey, Bob, you forgot to lock the door!" I ran back, locked the door and thanked my inner voice. My inner voice jokingly replied, "You'd forget your body if it wasn't attached!"

I've also been helped by my inner voice during my out-of-body experiences. For example:

07/25/82 Sun - OBE #80

...I used the same swaying method to get out of my body again....I was stuck to my body. I thought about it some more. I figured that the only way I could move was to close my eyes and trust my feelings. So I closed my eyes but immediately thought, "No! If I close my eyes, I might fall asleep!" If I have been reading for an hour, and I close my eyes, I will usually fall asleep. I can tell how likely this is to happen to me. So although I had started to move, I decided to open my eyes, and I saw that I was again in the same place. I thought of another way: if I could change my vision to purely astral vision I should be okay, I thought. So I lifted my arms out in front of me, and I tried to see clairvoyantly. I heard my inner voice clearly say, "Practicing clairvoyant vision here will greatly help your Earthly clairvoyant vision." I looked at my arms, not astrally, but clairvoyantly, as if trying to see a spirit from the physical world. My arms were transparent when I looked at them that way. They looked like transparent, dark black, filmy shadows. I studied them for a while, then blacked out.

Here is another example of my inner voice helping me during an OBE:

10-31-82 Sun - OBE #83

...Another thing happened last night. It was like a lesson from my inner voice. It wanted to teach me the difference between clairvoyant vision and out-of-body vision. So first it showed me a place clairvoyantly, and it said, "this is clairvoyant vision." Then it showed me the same scene with out-of-body vision. I remember some of the differences. First, although both pictures were clear and vivid, the out-of-body picture had more of a sense of depth. I could tell my spatial location, because I had normal depth perception. In the clairvoyant vision, I saw the same things, and I could tell it was three-dimensional, but it was more like a photograph, where some particulars stood out more than others. In short, the clairvoyance was like looking at a regular photograph, only some objects in the room seemed somehow emphasized. The out-of-body vision was different in that I was in the picture.

My inner voice has been one of the most beneficial forces in my life. Amazing things can happen if you begin using this tool. Your inner voice has always been there; all you have to do is listen inside.

What exactly is an inner voice? Some people may believe it to be a spirit guide. Perhaps some of today's "trance channels" are merely talking to their inner voice, then doing the same sort of verbal translation. Personally, I believe the inner voice is a communications link to your oversoul, or higher self.

My inner voice is notoriously honest and blunt. Once I asked my inner voice, "Why didn't you communicate with me before that cold winter day?" It replied, "Why didn't you listen to me before?" I asked, "Why don't you talk to me more often now?" It replied, "Why don't you listen to me more often now?" Then it struck me: Why don't we all?


Astral Doorway

This is a variation of the OBE technique found in many books, such as Astral Doorways, by J.H.Brennan.

Get into a comfortable position and close your eyes. Relax as completely as you can, and start a visualization. Pretend that your consciousness shrinks into an infinitesimal pinpoint of light. Then visualize that you are standing in front of a locked door. Visualize the doorway any way you want, with fancy engravings and door knobs or whatever--personalize the doorway.

Next, visualize yourself taking a fancy key out of your pocket (or from a chain around your neck, etc.) and unlocking the door. Open the door and step through the doorway. Close the door behind you, and lock the door again. The symbolic act of locking the door is for protection: Lock it every time you use it.

Put the key back where you found it, and start walking forward. Imagine there is a tunnel in front of you with a bright light at the end. Imagine that you walk to the end of the tunnel, step outside and find yourself outside your body, standing next to it.

Next, visualize a complete out-of-body experience, in all the detail you can imagine. Imagine walking away from your body to a destination. Try to imagine and remember as much detail as possible. When you are done, imagine walking back to your body. Imagine finding yourself back in the tunnel, walking back to the door. Again, unlock the door, step through, and lock it again from the other side. Guide yourself back to full consciousness and open your eyes.

Many authors say that this exercise in visualization can induce genuine OBEs as well as impressing the idea on your subconscious.

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