Concerning Transformational Imagination

By George A. Boyd ©2023

Q: Isn’t spiritual work just imagination and none of this is real?

A: Genuine spiritual work is the activity of transformational imagination. To understand what this is, it is important to look at the spectrum of imagination:

Sensory imagination – This is the ability to manipulate three-dimensional objects in space through visualization. Architects visualize a building; scientists imagine what a dinosaur looked like; designers mock up a finished product; game designers picture a virtual reality scenario.

Desire-laden imagination – This experiences the native language of the unconscious mind, which is called fantasy. These are elements of the unconscious that are not allowed expression in human life; they have not been integrated, so they operate in the background of normal awareness. The unconscious includes emotionally charged elements such as fear, anger, shame, guilt, hated, envy, jealousy, grief, lust, greed, addictive craving, attachment, and narcissism—these are called the passions.

Psychotherapy works with people to uncover and integrate intrapsychic elements of this type of imagination through a variety of evocative techniques.

Recovery groups also have people work on elements that arise from this level of the mind that are relevant to their addiction.

Goal-oriented imagination – This is the ability to visualize the outcome of goals. These visions of the future powerfully motivate behavior and substand the drive to succeed at the level of the personality. Goal-oriented imagination is also referred to as a personal dream of what someone wants to achieve.

Metaphysical imagination – This is the ability to imagine what a spiritual state of being may be like. This type of imagines what heaven would be like, how they might be when they reach a certain state of consciousness, and what it would be like to have certain spiritual powers.

This type of imagination is highly speculative, and overvalues and distorts the objects of its speculation. This type is also called glamour. It is commonly associated with the Psychic Realm.

Religious imagination – This type of imagination attempts to interpret scriptures and religious ideas without gaining insight into the actual meaning of what these sources communicate. In Christianity, for example, it generates elaborate fantasies about the Second Coming of the Savior, the Rapture, the Last Judgment, visions of the future (eschatology), and the subjugation of society to its religious dominion and demand for global adoption of its values and beliefs.

Without the development of discernment, this type of imagination can readily degenerate into distorted and paranoid beliefs that give rise to conspiracy theories.

This type is commonly associated with groups that identify with the Moon Soul nucleus of identity in the First Exoteric Planetary Initiation.

Creative imagination – This is the expression of the gifts of the Soul through the personality. This is usually associated with artistic media, literature, and invention, but it can express in other areas like cooking, interior design, gardening, and comedy. The ability to share the gifts of the Soul has been called talent, genius, or giftedness.

Transformational imagination – This type of imagination is based on the ability of the attentional principle to visualize and use intention to engage in inner work to generate transformation of the ensouling entity, to travel in full consciousness on the inner Planes, to make attunements for healing and guiding, and to perform spiritual ministry and initiation.

Because this type of imagination cannot be empirically verified, it is often portrayed as fantasy or self-delusion. In actuality, it is the foundation of genuine spiritual development. Students of Integral meditation are trained to activate and utilize this type of imagination, which enables them to fully actualize their spiritual potentials.

We suggest that developing sensory imagination, goal-oriented imagination, creative imagination, and transformational imagination will help you actualize your personal and spiritual potentials. Moreover, it will be valuable for you to have tools to work with the issues arising from desire-laden imagination, and to develop your wisdom and discernment so you are not entrapped in the illusions and delusions of metaphysical and religious imagination.

Those who wish to learn how to use the methods of transformational imagination that activate your attentional principle can start this process in our intermediate courses, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation or the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program.

The Seven Tracks through the Lower Astral Plane

By George A. Boyd ©2022

In the spiritual evolutionary journey through the Subtle Realm, each Soul Spark must face the challenges of the Lower Astral Plane, which is located just beyond the top of the Middle Subtle Bands of the Continuum. Each one is tested with the great temptations; some are able to escape from this dark realm; some become entrapped; and some some become involved with the Occult Adepts who rule this realm. This article was written in response to a question about what happens to the individuals who must cross this Plane.

Q: Does everyone in the Lower Astral have to enter the Occult Mystery Schools?

A: Once the Soul Spark has reached the Hermit stage in the Lower Astral Plane—after having overcome the temptations of the Chemical Snare, the Sexual Snare, the Criminal Snare, the Political Powers and Corruption Snare, and the Spiritual Slavery Snare bands of this dark realm—the Soul Spark may enter one of seven tracks:

Track one – The Soul Spark ascends through the Occult Mystery School on its Ray. This track leads individuals to become high occult initiates or even an Occult Adept.

Track two – The Soul Spark elects to renounce the Lower Astral. On this track, the Soul Spark moves beyond Satan in the Occult Hierarchy and continues to develop in the highest levels of the Lower Astral Plane to the Light of Renunciation at the threshold of the Subtle Illumined Mind.

Track three – The Soul Spark is translated directly into the Subtle Illumined Mind, and its karma is moved upstream into the Planetary. [The Multiplane Masters of Mudrashram® use this track for Mudrashram® students, who reach the doorway to the Lower Astral Plane.]

Track four – The Soul Spark elects to remain at the station of the Hermit and renounce further progress. It acts as a spiritual counselor or a therapist to assist others makes it through the bands of the Lower Astral snares.

Track five – The Soul Spark does not advance into either the Occult Mystery Schools or the track of Liberation, but rather, it remains where it is. It acts as an emissary of an Occult Adept to assist carry out the project on which the occult initiate is working.

Track six – The Soul Spark feels led to engage in a religious service that worships Satan. They do not advance on either the Mystery School or Liberation track, but they work with established Lower Astral religious organizations to set up formal religious services and to carry out occult or magical rituals.

Track seven – The Soul Spark disseminates occult information through videos, radio shows, podcasts, public talks, articles, and books. In this posture, the Soul Spark does not advance into either the Occult Mystery Schools or the track of Liberation, but remains where it is to act as mouthpiece for Occult and Magical teachings. There have been some popular writers, philosophers, and media personalities who operate on this track.

For the Soul Spark to enter the Occult Mystery Schools: it must have a powerful desire to do so—and it must choose and affirm that it chooses to do so. The Soul Spark then undergoes a series of tests; if it passes these challenges, it is admitted to the Occult Mystery School on its Ray.

How prevalent are these alternate tracks?

  • Perhaps no more than one out of fifteen—about seven percent—of those who reach the Hermit stage of development, opt to enter the Mystery Schools.
  • In contrast, about eighty four percent choose the Liberation track.
  • The remaining nine percent are about evenly divided between the occult counselor, the occult emissary, the occult apostle, and the occult communicator.

We discuss these Subplanes of the Lower Astral in the Mudrashram® Correspondence Course. We encourage those who are sojourning through the Middle Subtle Realm familiarize themselves about the major landmarks of this dark realm.

We also suggest that those who have advanced into the Planetary also become familiar with this realm, to assist those who may be trapped there, and show them how they can escape from this realm’s hypnotic spell.

Have You Become a Buddha Yet?

By George A. Boyd ©2022

The Buddhist scriptures describe the characteristic of an enlightened Buddha as one who has overcome the following ten fetters [via Wikipedia]:

  1. belief in a self
  2. doubt or uncertainty, especially about the Buddha’s awakeness and nine supermundane consciousnesses
  3. attachment to rites and rituals
  4. sensual desire
  5. ill will
  6. lust for material existence, lust for material rebirth
  7. lust for immaterial existence, lust for rebirth in a formless realm
  8. conceit — some writers translate this as arrogance
  9. restlessness
  10. ignorance
  11. Now, let’s have you evaluate how far you have progressed towards full Buddhahood. Rate yourself 0 to 10—where 0 indicates you have made no progress with this fetter and 10 indicates you have overcome it completely:

    __ belief in a self (Self illusion)

    __ doubt or uncertainty

    __ attachment to rites and rituals

    __ sensual desire

    __ ill will

    __ lust for material existence, lust for material rebirth

    __ lust for immaterial existence, lust for rebirth in a formless realm

    __ conceit or arrogance

    __ restlessness

    __ ignorance


    From our vantage point in Mudrashram® on the Bridge Path, we view the Buddhist Path as a track that leads through the Supracosmic Sphere. From our perspective, we view these ten characteristics as follows:

    In Mudrashram®, we point to the Self as the nucleus of the personality at the core of the Metaconscious mind. Apparently, this reference to self-illusion appears in systems where identification is transferred to a Supracosmic seed atom. This essence detaches from identification with ego, Self, Soul, Monad, and Astral Soul as it moves along its track, and any sense of self is dissolved when this Supracosmic seed atom becomes merged in its origin.

    It also appears that overcoming doubt or uncertainty first appears as faith in the Buddha; at the culmination of the journey, it is faith and conviction that one has reached the same state of consciousness as the Buddha at the end of the journey.

    Attachment to rites and rituals, historically marks the emergence of Buddhism as a separate and distinct religion apart from Hinduism. Hinduism, in the time of the historical Buddha, was known for its elaborate rituals for invocation of the gods and goddesses and in worship ceremonies. Buddhism, in contrast, relied upon meditation without rituals to draw close to the Source.

    The pure monk, after completing his or her sadhana, roots out sensual desire, or lust for sexual enjoyment.

    Ill will is overcome through the cultivation of compassion and loving-kindness.

    Lust for birth in form and rebirth in a heavenly realm appear to be transcended when one reaches the Supreme Abode where Buddhas dwell at the highest stage of a Supracosmic Path.

    Conceit or arrogance appears to be the surfacing of what we call spiritual egotism. Ostensibly, this also is overcome when the seed atom merges with the Light from which it originated.

    Restlessness appears to be related to the existence of desire at the level of the body and the impressions that exist within the layers of the mind. Desire is the motivating force, which at the level of the human Self, drives achievement and progress towards identified objectives or goals. It is unclear whether the full overcoming of restlessness would lead to a complete cessation of motivation for any material activity.

    Ignorance is overcome with the activation and full development of the Buddhi or Illumined mind. This development of the Buddhi exhibits the following characteristics: discernment, prudence, wisdom, equanimity, clear seeing of the elements of the mind and consciousness, identification of stages of the Path, and Gnosis of the spiritual essence in which it is anchored. In a Buddhist system, this spiritual essence for which Gnosis is achieved would likely be the Supracosmic Soul, for those individuals whose Supracosmic Soul dwells on a Buddhist Path; for those that don’t have the Supracosmic Soul present, it would be achieved when one merges the Supracosmic seed atom into its origin and one experiences the primordial Void that exists beyond the origin of the Supracosmic seed atom.

    It appears that one would need to become identified with a Supracosmic seed atom on a Buddhist Path to experience the overcoming of several of these fetters. In systems like Mudrashram®, that do not destroy the sense of the ego and the Self, would have difficulty with overcoming the Self-illusion. We also would have a problem with the cessation of restlessness, as we recognize the importance of desire at the personal level as fueling goal achievement and motivation for personal growth; and spiritual aspiration for growth and development at the transpersonal level.

    Rooting out issues such sensual desire, ill will, and arrogance appear to depend on the ability to remove these impressions entirely from the inmost mind (nijmanas) and the causal body through whatever transformational modality one utilizes in their tradition. We note that for many aspirants and disciples, when these elements are embedded in the personal unconscious—also called the Shadow or physical etheric matrix in our writings—would have much difficulty rooting out these patterns.

    The achievement of Samadhi through the opening of the Buddhic capsule appears to counter ignorance; attaining this state is possible, but requires much initial effort to awaken this multidimensional stage of illumination. We would suggest that this does not spontaneously occur when one reaches some designated completion marker on the Path—such as Brahman in the First Cosmic Initiation, completion of a Supracosmic Path, or realization of Satchitananda after liberation of an ensouling entity—but appears to require genuine activation of the Illumined mind.

    The attainment of Param Moksha Desh, which we have analogized to Buddhahood in the Mudrashram® system, does not appear to be identical to the characteristics described in Buddhist philosophy. In Mudrashram®, Buddhahood is seen as a stage in spiritual development that marks the dissolution of all karma in the Superconscious mind throughout the Subtle, Planetary, Transplanetary, and Cosmic Bands of the Continuum; on one’s native Supracosmic Path; and all eight Transcendental Paths—this results in the liberation of the spirit and ensouling entity in each of these realms, and the dropping of vehicles of consciousness not directly related to one’s ministry and service.

    Buddhist philosophy appears to describe Buddhahood as a state achieved when one completes a particular Buddhist Path; this does not require the dissolution of karma in Subtle, Planetary, Transplanetary, Cosmic, native Supracosmic, or Transcendental levels, as we cultivate in Mudrashram®.

    This would suggest that those who follow the Mudrashram® Way might not score highly on the Buddha scale, but we achieve something different in the completion of our journey than is espoused in Buddhism.

The Gentle Meandering Away from Truth

By George A. Boyd ©2023

In conspiracy theories, there is a detachment from consensual reality and absorption in deeper strata of belief and perception. These deeper levels of mental processing are subject to distortion and delusional belief.

The challenge for those attempting to navigate the illusions of the collective mind to determine reality and truth encounter seven major mental postures. These are:

  1. Recognition of objects in the environment and correctly labeling them, measuring them, and verifying their existence; this establishes facts and consensual reality.
  2. Speculation about causation and motivation using deduction and inference; researchers, journalists, investigators, and psychologists tap this level.
  3. Believing in things other people have told you or communicated to you without verifying the information you have received is correct; this is the first level subject to the distortion of conspiracy theories and others lying to you and exploiting you.
  4. Believing revelations and interpretations you receive from your own contemplation or that you receive from psychic readers or religious clergy; this level is subject to the distortion that comes from you overvaluing ideas or misinterpretation of the content you uncover or that is communicated to you; those who disseminate conspiracy theories often draw from these sources.
  5. Believing in signs, omens, and coincidences for guidance; the issue here is that you are not certain which of these presentations are genuinely guidance from your Soul and which are simply random signals; those that present distorted information from levels three and four with conviction and enthusiasm can readily persuade those who operate in this frame of inner guidance to adopt their beliefs.
  6. Receiving guidance from a spiritual entity other than your own Soul through channeling or automatic writing; the quality of this guidance you receive depends on whom you are channeling—you can receive very valuable and reliable information from this source, or you can obtain spurious and useless information. Some look for Gurus at this level to provide answers and show them how to realize their true nature.
  7. Gaining union with your Soul and having it reveal its true nature; this is union with your inner source of wisdom and discernment; this is the touchstone of inner truth and realization.

Not all of these postures of mental processing lead you down rabbit holes:

Postures one and seven form the bedrock of reality and truth. You can verify consensual reality through your senses and reason; you can gain conscious union with your Soul and tap into its direct intuitive stream.

Posture two, if performed with careful safeguards in place against bias can be a valuable tool to arrive at valid conclusions and correct inferences—without validation, however, these can lead astray well-meaning detectives, researchers, and clinicians.

The zone that generates delusion and the strange beliefs of conspiracy theories spans postures three to six.

Posture three is the most common entry point for those who embrace conspiracy theories: because they cannot or do not verify the information they receive, they unwittingly adopt false beliefs.

Posture four is often the source of many of the distorted beliefs that underpin conspiracy theories: someone has had a revelation… someone has attempted to read meaning into a cryptic scriptural passage or an arcane, symbolic manuscript… someone has interpreted an event in an ominous or apocalyptic way. Those that operate at this level still think, although their thinking process may be corrupted.

Posture five begins to operate when someone has set aside thinking and analysis, and instead embraces intuition as their source of truth. This is a highly experiential, serendipitous frame of mind that seeks to discover truth. Divinatory arts like tarot, angel cards, and I Ching tap into this intuitive matrix. This posture leads to a mindset that views the unitive nature of the universe, the connections between all things, and a sense that there is a deeper reality behind the observable physical universe. At this level, one “creates” through intention and visualization; events occur synchronistically.

Posture six typically dawns when someone seeks guidance from a wise and highly evolved spiritual being: this often takes the form of a search for a spiritual mentor or Guru. If someone selects an ethical, genuinely realized teacher for this stage of their aspirant journey, they can receive teachings that help them advance both in their personal life and their spiritual development.

Choosing wrongly can lead to involvement with spiritual cults and enslavement and abuse at the hands of authoritarian and paranoid spiritual leaders. Some alternately draw their information and inspiration from guides they encounter in the inner Planes; like flesh and blood Gurus, these sources can be legitimately helpful or they can lead people into greater delusion.

It is possible to avoid slipping into the traps of postures three to six:

In Mudrashram®, in our intermediate classes—the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program—we teach our students how to tune into posture seven to directly know and commune with their essential nature and skip over the pitfalls of postures three to six.

You can have greater success with posture two, if you learn critical thinking and obtain an education that emphasizes careful intellectual inquiry and analysis.

We encourage you to identify in what ways you operate in each of seven postures, and to progressively learn to uncover and eliminate the false beliefs you may have adopted in listening to the siren voices of the Astral and the misinformation coming from those who seek to exploit you and manipulate you for their own agendas.