A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Psychics

Briefly, there is no question that visions occasionally do come to individuals, which are true and have significance. On the other hand, this comes to an individual through the grace of God, and not through the exercise of any of the human faculties. It is not a thing which a person should try to develop. When a person endeavors to develop faculties so that they might enjoy visions, dreams etc., actually what they are doing is weakening certain of their spiritual capacities; and thus under such circumstances, dreams and visions have no reality, and ultimately lead to the destruction of the character of the person.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 515)


He would advise you to consider the voice you heard a phenomenon which might be your subconscious mind, might be some psychic influence, but whatever it was you should not let it disturb you and certainly not place much importance on it. No one knows what the future holds for him, or to what degree he is spoiling it or creating it; therefore the thing to do is one’s daily best and let the future take care of itself. It would be very unwise for you to let this experience of a voice-the origin and purpose of which you have no way of knowing-influence you in any way or to set any store on its observations.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 515)


Outside of the Bounty of the Holy Spirit all that thou hearest concerning mesmerism or trumpet communications from the dead are sheer imagination.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Daily lessons Received at ‘Akká p. 85)


Regarding the materialization of spirits through mediums: A person finding himself in a state of trance, or unconsciousness, is like one who sleeps; whatever he feels and sees he imagines to be matter and of material things, but in reality they are wholly immaterial.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Daily lessons Received at ‘Akká p. 82)


Regarding your question: In His chapter on ‘Visions and Communications with Spirits’ in ‘Some Answered Questions’ the Master evidently desires to point out that there can be, under certain rare circumstances, such as those experienced by the Prophets, communion with some soul gone before into the invisible world, but that most of this type of experience which people often claim to have with departed souls is nothing but the product of their own imaginations-however real it may seem to them to be … Truly mystical experiences based on reality are very rare, and we can readily see how dangerous it is for people to go groping about in the darkness of their imagination after the true thing. That is why, as you point out, we are warned against all psychical practices by the Master. If we are going to have some deeply spiritual experience we can rest assured God will vouchsafe it to us without having to look for it.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 514)


The Guardian thinks that it is best to assume that generally speaking when people claim they are receiving messages or communications from the Master or Bahá’u’lláh, etc., it is a psychic experience or their imagination, and that they are not in real contact with them. These Holy Beings have the channels of the Cause through which to guide us. They do not need to go outside these and send individual revelations.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 515)


The House of Justice fully appreciates that in ... and ... there are many instances of individuals being affected adversely by the psychic arts of the other people. This is an observable phenomenon in many parts of the world and must, as you say, be taken into account by those who would teach the Faith. The important thing for Bahá’ís to understand is that the influence of such ‘arts’ is dependent on the conviction, even the sub-conscious conviction, of the person affected and, similarly, the power of the ‘priests’ to overcome the influence is likewise an outcome of the sufferer’s conviction that it is from the ‘priest’ that he or she will be able to obtain help. The Manifestation of God describes the reality which is conducive to the happiness, health and development of mankind. His Teachings serve as a compass to help us find our way in the new world. They outline not only what is good for mankind but also the steps to be taken to secure individual freedom and well-being. Within this framework it is important to understand the statements in the Writing about evil spirits and psychic phenomena.
(Universal House of Justice, Lights of Guidance, p. 519)


There is no ambiguity about the Master’s attitude towards psychic forces. He very strongly warned the believers against using them.
(Shoghi Effendi, Spiritualism, Reincarnation and Related Subjects, p. 2)


Truly mystical experiences, based on reality, are very rare, and we can readily see how
dangerous it is for people to go groping about in the darkness of their imagination after the true thing. That is why, as you point out, we are warned against all psychical practices by the Master.
(From a letter dated 25 October 1942 written on behalf of the Guardian to
an individual believer)


What ‘Abdu’l-Bahá always pointed out in this matter is that these psychic powers were not to be used in this world, and that, indeed, it was dangerous to cultivate them here. They should be left dormant, and not exploited, even when we do so with the sincere belief we are helping others. We do not understand their nature and have no way of being sure of what is true and what is false in such matters. If children are inclined to be psychic they should not be blamed for it too harshly; they should not be encouraged to strengthen their powers in this direction.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 513)


With reference to psychic phenomena referred to in your letter; in most cases are an indication of deep psychological disturbance. The friends should avoid as much as possible giving undue consideration to such matters.
(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 513)


With respect to your feelings of direct communication with God, and receiving messages
from Bahá’u’lláh, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and the Guardian, Shoghi Effendi has advised in his letters to the friends who asked him about psychic powers that we do not understand the nature of such phenomena, that we have no way of being sure of what is true and what is false, that very little is known about the mind and its workings, and that we should endeavour to avoid giving undue consideration to such matters. God undoubtedly has many and various methods of awakening mankind to the significance of this Day, but Bahá’ís should rely on the Bahá’í Writings to attract the souls athirst for the life-giving Message of Bahá’u’lláh.
‘Abdu’l-Bahá has also pointed out that psychic powers should not be used in this world,
and that, indeed, it is dangerous to cultivate them here. They should be left dormant, and not exploited, even when we do so with the sincere belief that we are helping others.
(From a letter dated 2 October 2000 written on behalf of the Universal House
of Justice to an individual believer)