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Transcending The Gates of DEATH

Robin Pan

Since the Industrial Revolution, society has rapidly adopted a materialistic perspective. This has also led to gross misunderstanding of spirituality and religion. For example, many people think that Christianity promises heaven after death for those who believe in God. Some people do not even consider the importance of doing virtuous deeds while alive. This is a big mistake.

Dr. Rudolf Steiner has written several books and spoken many times on the commonality among different religions. He holds the view that all religions are similar in terms of their practices and objectives; however, because of differences in time, location, and audience, the practices promulgated have been difference. Dr. Steiner believes that the desire to surpass oneself is a good start-subsequent continuation with spiritual practice will allow one to experience and see the spiritual world. After that? This may surprise you, but Dr. Steiner also discusses the method of “overcoming life and death”, which has the objective of enabling people to serve and sacrifice for all others, just as Jesus did.

In the book “Knowledge of the higher world and its attainment”, Dr. Steiner points out humans has the natural ability to see the spiritual world. According to ancient mystics, what they document about the spiritual world are as real as what we see in this physical world with our eyes. Training based on the method proposed by these high-ability mystics is called occult training, and the method is called occult teaching or spiritual science.

Some people may think that if occult teaching is so important, it should not be made a secret. In actual fact, it is like learning to write. Those who have not learned how to write do not know how. However, with the correct method, they can learn how to do so. In fact, those who have learned the method can even be teachers. Furthermore, you do not need to specially look for a teacher. As the Taoists say, it is not the disciple who seeks the teacher; rather, it is the teacher who seeks the disciple. Spiritual initiates agree on three principles: (a) not to withhold the teachings to those who deserve to be taught, (b) not to teach those who do not deserve to be taught, and (c) not to control the will of others.Dr. Steiner says that it was easy to engage in spiritual training in the past because the spiritual temples or abodes were observable to the naked eye. However, these are not observable these days as the modern society is less spiritual. However, these spiritual temples are everywhere, and those who are willing to find them can do so.



The first prerequisite prior to training is that you must have a special trait embedded deep in your soul or true nature. If you don’t, you will need to put in the effort to develop it. This special trait is the respectful mind, that is, the mind that respects and seeks the true method. It is a blessing to have this trait and is particularly rare among children. If we do not have the attitude that “there are beings or things that are superior to us and deserve our respect”, we will not have the strength to elevate ourselves to higher levels of spiritual practice. Hence, we can say that “to climb the spiritual stairway, we need to go through the door of humility”. Only through respect will you get the true teaching.

Dr. Steiner points out that the respectful mind is particularly important in the modern era because modern culture is characterized by criticism and blame of others, not respect for and service to others. Every criticism you levy against others weakens your spirituality; in contrast, a respectful attitude enhances your spirituality. Spiritual practice was easier in the past when life was simpler because ordinary things in life would engender the positive energies of praise and respect. These positive energies have been substituted by negative energies in the highly materialistic world, and spiritual practice is now made more difficult; hence, we need to practice harder to improve ourselves. This positive attitude does not come from research and listening, but from actual practice in our daily lives, from continuous internal reflection, and from generation of an aspiration to serve others. If I keep criticizing others, I am weakening my practice; if I praise his virtues, I am accumulating energies for my practice. Only spiritual practitioners will know the great importance of avoiding evil and promoting the virtuous.

Besides externally observing this “precept” of not criticizing others, it is important to thoroughly transform our internal mindset to serve and not criticize others. This will open our spiritual eyes, and we will find that the people, events, and things that we encounter are no longer the same, and that our experiences have a new meaning. We may look the same, but our minds have changed. Just as sunlight will bring life to living things, respect and the calling to serve others can lead us to have a new lease of life in terms of how we view others.

In the beginning, it may be hard to believe how these attitudes have anything to do with the power of our spiritual sensitivity. This disbelief stems from our thinking that spiritual sensitivity and our souls have nothing in common. Note that the soul needs feelings just like the body needs food. The feelings of respect and serving others are food for our souls, particularly our spiritual sensitivity. In contrast, disrespect, loathe, and underrating others are feelings that hurt our spiritual sensitivity. People who have opened their spiritual eyes can sense all these from a person’s aura. Respect can also awaken one’s compassion within the soul and attract positive energies around us. Thus, respect is very important.

At this time, we can engage in another practice to enhance the strength that arises from respect. This practice involves not being distracted by stray thoughts and events around us and requires that we turn our focus inwards to discover the spiritual life-force within us. The outside world may be filled with pristine brightness, but we have to experience the spiritual holiness within us before we discover the holiness outside.

We need to set aside some quiet time every day to be with ourselves and re-experience what has gone by during the day. Over time, we will discover that it is almost like experiencing a brand-new external world. We will feel joy, but do not be fixated on it; just realize the message in these experiences. Otherwise, we will increase our attachments and violate the objectives we set out to achieve. Understand that our practice is not for ourselves. The transmission of occult teaching has a basic principle – “For all practices, if the purpose is for one’s own benefit, then one has strayed from the correct path.” If the purpose of the practice is for the universe and to purify human nature, then one has progressed.



In terms of formal practice, seek to achieve calmness and quiet internally. Quieten down, and while in this state of quietude, contemplate on what is non-moving and essential (termed the “owner”), and what is constantly moving and non-essential (termed “temporary defilements”).

You must be sincere and strict in carrying out this practice. Set aside some time every day to reflect on the joy and sorrow encountered during the day. Contemplate on what you cared about, experienced, did, and felt-re-assess everything again from a third person’s perspective. For example, something very unfortunate happened to me today. If it happened to my neighbor, how would I feel? Would I be uncaring, or would I rejoice in his misfortune? In other words, we should be objective, face our true nature (free of any pretenses), and assess ourselves. If we attained a real quietude, the “owner” and “temporary defilements” will be separated! Before we reach this stage, we have to sincerely preserve on this practice. Those who preserve to the end will open their spiritual eyes and see a brand-new world.

Those who practice this method will discover that the power of concentration enables them to be stronger, and not to be perturbed and influenced by things around them. They are no longer angry at things that would have angered them in the past. Nor are they frightened by things they had feared in the past. They gradually develop the ability to determine the impact that external things have on themselves. For example, while they would have been hurt in the past when scolded by others, they can be immune from it due to their power of concentration. In the past, they would have been very impatient in a long queue; now, they take their time to observe their minds. The space within which we grow comes from the quiet in our minds. Understand that we will not grow if we are influenced by external events-under such circumstances, we are not the owners of our reactions as we are controlled by external events. If external events determine whether I am angry, I have not found my true “owner”,

After reflecting on ourselves, we need to surpass ourselves and put our aspirations on advanced spiritual attainment. In this way, we will gradually have internal realizations and understand that we belong to an advanced spiritual world. We will then shift our lives’ focus to this internal true nature. The spiritual practitioners can hear their own inner voices while they are in concentration. They can now transcend what goes on in their daily lives – everything has quietened down, the external world is quiet, and they enter into a world of pure thoughts.

At this time, learn how to experience this world of thoughts. Be blissful at this focus on the spiritual nature. Experience how this world of pure thoughts is even more real than the external world. The thoughts being observed are more real than the material things around us. During this stage, we will discover that our thoughts seem to have images and sounds. In the past, our ears are the only organs that hear. Now, the sounds float into our spiritual worlds, and we discover a new internal language. Students who experience this stage will have a great sense of joy. As a result, a radiance coming from within will shine forth on the external world, and a brand new life begins within each of them.

This new life is termed meditation and is the tool that allows one to surpass our sense organs and mundane knowledge. At this point in time, confused students who are attached to this sense of joy will be unable to realize the true spiritual knowledge. The student has to maintain a sense of clarity to move on. If problems are encountered at this stage, read existing literature related to meditation, or consult an experienced meditation master. Be observant of all that happens at this time; the point is not to lose connection with the practical world. In fact, the student will realize that everything that he does has its meaning and involves a lesson to be learned. The student now understands that the purpose of all his sufferings and exhaustion in the past is so that he can learn, and that they have a bigger meaning associated with the universe and spiritual nature. Hence, meditation allows him to be strong and not be festered by feelings of suffering and exhaustion. Meditation also allows his indestructible true nature (that is unrestricted by death) to surface.

Hence, meditation is the only key to spiritual knowledge. However, further practice is necessary. Spiritual science teaches the following three methods:

  • Preparation: Opening the spiritual senses,
  • Enlightenment: Igniting the spiritual light, and
  • Initiation: Connecting with the higher spiritual world.

Recomposing The Melody of Life – Fasting and Realization

Robin Pan

Most people associate fasting with hunger, drinking only water and being weak. As a result, they are not interested. Then 55 ½-year-old Dennis Paulsen, with his 30 years of experience in teaching the art of fasting as a way to keep fit; may be able to change this perception. Dennis has clients all over the world.

According to Dennis, fasting has the following advantages:

  1. Slimming

Fasting naturally has the effect of depleting the body of excessive fat.

  1. Detoxification (as a form of therapy)

Fasting is the most effective detoxifying method. Other methods such as acupuncture, acupressure and the use of herbs, are not able to remove toxins that are deeply buried in the organs and fat cells; only fasting can achieve this. The body is restored to its healthy state once more.

  1. To increase the energy level

Contrary to general belief that fasting weakens the body, fasting actually increases the body’s energy level.

  1. The mind is more alert

The body need not dispatch extra energy to digest solid food substances, and the conserved energy allows the mind to be more alert.

  1. Reinforcement of spiritual awareness

The most important and yet most surprising fact is the strengthening of spiritual awareness as a result of practicing fasting over a long period of time.

Fasting is effectively therapeutic. It is also the speediest and safest therapeutic method. Dennis pointed out two interesting examples.

  1. Prisoners of war were kept in concentration camps with little to eat during the Second World War. They were starved constantly but their initial sickness contracted before the imprisonment disappeared.
  2. Using rats and rabbits in dieting experiments, it was discovered that the lifespan of these creatures extended a few times longer when their food intake was reduced.

In explaining the point regarding the strengthening of spirituality; we could look back upon the history. We could see many great thinkers and philosophers practiced fasting. Dennis pointed out that the Lord Jesus fasted for 40 days in the desert when he was 30 years old; and thereafter attained a state of togetherness with God. Dennis further pointed out that lay people like you and I could also achieve this state. On the other hand, the 35-year-old Lord Buddha attained enlightenment after fasting and meditating under the Bodhi tree for 49 days. The Lord Buddha declared that there is no secret in the path to Enlightenment, one simply has to put effort to obtain ultimate wisdom.

For this reason, Dennis believes that the physical body is an entity comprising of the body,mind and spirit; and we inherit the basic right to have this entity in the best of health; which can be achieved by fasting and adequating well-balanced nutrients intake. We have to know that our potential is exactly identical to those of any historical great being in the past.

Why is fasting necessary to reach the state of perfect health? Ultimately, it does not only benefit oneself. When you have a healthy body, you would have the ability to help others lessen their unnecessary sufferings. When you have a longer life, you would be able to help more people. When you have a clear mind, you would be more confident and able to maximize the quality of every moment of existence.

Fasting has to be carried out on sound theoretical argument and practical feasibility simultaneously. If one only understands the theories of fasting without actually trying them out personally, one is not able to benefit from fasting. Dennis has several wealthy clients who are in this category, and they will never receive the goodness of fasting. On the contrary, many of his clients who put the theory of fasting to practice, have their lives changed.

According to Dennis, fasting sounds simple but to practice it skillfully is not something that everyone can easily achieve. Because many unexpected physical and mental symptoms would suddenly appear during fasting, and these require the guidance of an experienced teacher; and at time consultation with a medical doctor.


The following are some interesting events that may occur during fasting:

  1. After 3 or 4 days of fasting when all solid food have been discharged, you will not experience any more hunger pangs.
  2. When drugs, tobacco, alcohol, caffeine, refined sugar and other addictive substances have been eliminated from the body, symptoms such as headache and cold perspiration may happen. These substances hurt the body when they first enter and once again when they leave. However, after 7 to 10 days of fasting, the addiction will be completely overcome.
  3. As you experience the sufferings during the detoxification process, you would also gradually feel comfortable and energized. This is so because solid food deprives 10% of the body’s energy to digest it. Fasting means no or minimal solid food.
  4. After prolonged fasting, your mind would be crystal clear. You would no longer crave for unnecessary material needs. You would slow down to take stock and re-examine your purpose in life. Your confidence would be boosted. You’ll believe that you’ll succeed. Dennis further pointed out that according to his observation all over the world, 95% of the people are materialistic; being influenced by family and society which regard happiness as possessing beautiful houses, cars and clothes. Thus these people drift along busily to and from work aimlessly every day even though most of them do not like the work they are doing; if not for the pay which allow them to maintain their present standard of living, they would most probably not want to continue with their jobs. The other 5% of the people are very happy although they do not have big houses, cars or branded clothes. This is so because happiness cannot be derived from external material wealth, but it has to come from within you. Their work is what they really want to do, and it involves helping others to reduce sufferings.

Dennis also told a story about a person who followed her heart:

Many years ago, a 31-year-old Catholic nun arrived in India from Armenia. She found that the local people lived in extreme poverty and hardship. So she chose to remain in the most improvised place to help the people overcome their unnecessary sufferings there. Each morning, she would roam the streets seeking out and helped the sick and the poor, including the ‘untouchables’ who were social outcast of the lowest caste. She turned her home into a hospice. Her exemplary actions encouraged several women to volunteer their help and they formed a sister club to care for the underprivileged. The nun is now 86 years old** and is none other than the famous Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Mother Teresa.

**NB: Late Mother Teresa passed away in 1999, this passage was first published in 1997.

Thus no one will pat you on your back to announce your destiny or tell you “Hey! You’ll be the next Mother Teresa!”. Your future depends on whether you choose to follow your heart to be one of the 5% who lead a truly rewarding life; or follow the tide of the 95% who pursues a materialistic life without really being happy at all.



  1. Those who are not supposed to fast: growing children (below 18 years of age), expectant mothers, nursing mothers (toxin discharge during this period may be harmful to the nursing baby), diabetics who are using insulin and persons who are undernourished.
  2. Water fasting is not recommended; fasting is best done under professional guidance to ensure safety.
  3. It is necessary to reduce the amount of food taken gradually before reaching the fasting state. In the same way, gradually increase the food intake to normal level after the fasting period.
  4. During fasting, continue to consume fruit juice, vegetable soup and herbal brew to maintain the minimum nutrient requirement for the body. These include 60 kinds of minerals, 60 kinds of vitamins, 12 kinds of amino acids and 3 kinds of fatty acids. Your brain needs four basic elements namely, calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium; to sustain normal functions.
  5. During fasting, large amounts of toxin is discharged into the large intestine. Daily colonic irrigation (a process of cleansing the large intestine) is recommended in order to avoid toxin being reabsorbed into the system and being discharged through other organs. Please note that one should not be dependent on colonic irrigation at other times so as not to allow the colon to lose its normal functionality. (Details on Colonic Irrigation could be obtained from the Lapis Lazuli Light office by mail request. Please attached a prepaid return envelope)
  6. How long should you fast in order to eliminate all toxins from the body? The answer is your age plus 17 days. For instance, if you are 35 years old, then it will be 35 + 17 = 52 days; and broken into sections according to your physical health.
  7. It is normal to lose weight during fasting. In general, it takes about 2 months to gain back your normal weight afterwards.



Be true and sincere to thyself. Maintain a good lifestyle, eat a healthy vegetarian diet limiting to 2 meals a day of organically grown food, and exercise.


Dennis serves as a fasting consultant to the international community through e-mail and the Internet. You may wish to visit his website at http://www.fasting.com for more information and reference material.

Infinite Self Healing

An interview with Meir Schneider

Meir Schneider had congenital cataract and glaucoma, Shortly after being born, he was diagnosed with other eye problems such asnystagmus. He had had 5 operations before the age of 7 to remove a large part of his cataract. However, these operations left many thick scars on his cornea —his vision was severely impaired, and doctors declared him legally blind. He attended Braille school, but never gave up hope of seeing clearly again. At the age of 16, he met a ‘saviour’ and began his self-healing exercises. After 10 years of hard work and perseverance, he regained much of his vision and was even able to take his driving test in California without any visual aid.

Now a famous, world renowned medical healer, educator, as well as founder of a self-healing center and school (located in San Francisco), he is also the specialist column writer for a massage magazine. His own work includes Self Healing: My Life and Vision (Penguin, 1987); and The Handbook for Self-healing: Your Personal Program for Better Health and Increased Vitality with Maureen Larkin and Dror Schneider (Penguin, 1994).

When did you first experience the latent force of self-healing?

I first performed eye exercises at the age of 16 in the hope of improving my vision.  It did, gradually.  I began to understand that all ailments could be self healed; it is only that these self-healing power are latent and need to be awakened.  Subsequently, I designed some routine exercises for others and myself.  I felt my physical body awakening, and my self-healing power strengthening.

For over 20 years, I have shared my experience of awakening body self-healing power with thousands of people.  These people include sportsmen/women, musicians and stroke patients who, as a result of these exercises, improved their deteriorating physical conditions. Encouraged by what I’ve seen, I want to share the benefits with people all over the world with these publications.  While healing my eyesight, I found that every part of our body is closely connected.  During the time when my eyesight was gradually restored, I began to help those who were seriously ill.  From these experiences, I discovered that the self-healing power in us is much stronger than we think.  In the exercise routines that I’ve designed, I integrate refined movement exercises, encourage kinesthetic awareness exercises, as well as massage (self and for others), breathing  exercises, and visualization.  All these exercises complement and enhance one another.

My method is to motivate and provide guidance for patients, so that they know how to observe their bodily conditions very well, and are therefore able to proactively work with their physiotherapists to design suitable home exercises.  When the patients actively participate in designing their own therapy courses, they experience a great moral boost, which can help them overcome some of their fears and depressions associated with their ailments.

In your opinion, is the occurrence of degenerative diseases more widespread now than 50 years ago?
These degenerative diseases are a result of our passive lifestyles. Everyday, we move very little within confined spaces (around our offices, in the living room, in airplanes), and then, we lie down to sleep. After long hours of constrained movements, the person becomes too lethargic to move, and movement becomes unnatural. Gradually, our joints, muscles, vision, and all the other parts of the body begin to deteriorate. Of course, you could still be busy working to earn a living; however, you can also do deep breathing exercises while working. You can choose to work out attentively or inattentively in the gymnasium. It is your personal choice whether to move or not. You can also choose to sit in front of the computer monitor without using your lateral vision until your brain completely ignores its existence; or, you may choose to look at distant objects now and then to rejuvenate your eyes again. I have no intention of changing anybody’s lifestyle or work. But the way we work to earn a living is making us sluggish; we can be more active.

In your self-healing centre and school, you emphasis that students themselves shoulder the bulk of the responsibility to heal themselves. What is the basis of this philosophy?

This is so because the health of your body depends on what you think, and the choices you make. In the past, there have been erroneous thoughts that cause us great harm such as “as you grow older, your sight will deteriorate”, and “ it is normal to start having backaches at the age of 30, and arthritis at 45”. Most people take these to be general rules. As a self-healing teacher, I do not want my students to be restricted by these beliefs. I want them to break away from their old habits as they touch their own bodies and experience self-healing.

It takes time to change our old ways of looking after our bodies, and it involves more than just having enthusiastic positive thinking. You need to experience a different way of living. Thus, our job is to help people identify possible methods that can treat their conditions, and to gently train them to elicit their self-awareness and understanding of their own bodies

Can you please tell us which bodily condition is most easily rectified with your self-healing methods?
Amongst our students, there are professional sportsmen as well as very difficult cases that have been certified incurable by doctors. Up to the present moment, there are three nearly completed medical research that provides evidence that these self-healing methods can rejuvenate and strengthen slackened muscles, and allow them to be active once more. Amongst my patients, many are able to recover the functionality of muscles although their own doctors have written them off. In addition, we also have very encouraging results on degenerative cases. They include various hardening of tissues, spinal problems, respiratory disorders, circulation system disorders, digestive system disorders, diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis rheumatoid, vision problems, as well as problems arising from bad postures.

Our current problems lie in that patients are passive and doctors have a fixed way of thinking. Doctors are only willing to do what they deem to be right, and are unwilling to do what they think may be wrong. Thus, patients receive treatments that appear in textbooks and standard operating procedures. As a result, creativity in healing is impaired. I believe that creativity is something everyone is endowed with. My teaching methods are built upon the principle of stimulating students’ creativity—they are given sufficient knowledge and information, and are then left to demonstrate their potential.

At the seaside in Virginia, I met with an accident victim. She had no feelings from the chest down. I asked her if her arms were normal, and whether her doctor allowed her to use a walking frame. She said that she had started to use a walking stick to support herself only the day before, even though her injury was already one year old. She added that her doctor was afraid that she might fall and tried his best to keep her from further mishaps. She was spared the falls, but she had not been on her feet for the past year, resulting in weaknesses in her leg muscles and bones. When we try to avoid making mistakes, we may also not have be doing the right thing.

We need a new system of therapy. The present relationship comprising know-all doctors and passive patients is no longer suitable. It will only make the situation worse by creating more cases of degenerative diseases. Being responsible for one’s own recovery is very important.

In your opinion, why are so many people feeling helpless and hopeless over the present therapies for degenerative diseases?

This is because present therapies are based on the principle of treating acute ailments. This principle may almost be considered to be a branch of engineering! Currently, about twenty-five percent of patients suffer from high blood pressure. Modern medical treatments can identify blockages in our hearts and kidneys, and then remove these blockages. However, many patients suffer from high blood pressure as a result of their lifestyles, such as too much sodiumin their diet, shallow breathing, and stress. Hypnosis, meditation, yoga, vegetarian diet and other self-healing techniques can help treat many coronary artery problems. Unfortunately, modern medical science considers these to be inferior solutions, and downplays them. Note that in cases of physical wounds arising from accidents, surgery is indispensable in the healing process. Therefore, modern medical science has its role to play. However, it is our lifestyles that lead to the gradually worsening of arthritis, hardening of the arteries, and impaired insulin secretion. These latent problems are normally not discussed, and frequently glossed over through the prescription of pills and sheer ignorance. As health educators, we help others to rebuild their confidence both in their self-healing abilities, and their conviction that they can start new, healthy lives all over again.