The story of Adam and Eve has always fascinated me. I’ve always been left with the sense that there is something of substance, something important within it - something I could never quite grasp. Jungian psychologists suggest that archetypes appearing in such stories, across mythology, and in dreams offer tremendous insight as expressions of our collective unconscious. Our distant ancestors may well have passed profound wisdom down to us. I like to imagine those who lived close to nature at the dawn of history, free of cultural programming, sharing unbroken oral histories; stories rooted in fresh ancestral memories and experiences in states of consciousness we rarely experience in the modern world.
The wisdom the story holds, my intuitive fascination with it, and it’s relevance to our modern predicament only became clear to me thanks to recent advancements in our understanding of consciousness and human performance. Really, it’s the idea of heaven on earth that draws me to the story, and the feeling that we all hold within us the potential to create heaven on earth. A utopian, Eden like future once seemed not only possible to me, but inevitably close. The rapid advances in science and technology I witnessed throughout my youth, advances that continue to this day, held the promise an abundant, safe, healthy and luxurious future.
The world I find myself in now is however far from utopian. Depression and chronic disease are epidemics. Beloved natural wonders are disappearing and real wages for most working people have fallen. Many of us enjoy modern conveniences, but climate change, war and industrialization have turned immense swaths of our planet, and many people’s lives, into hell on earth. As industrial capitalism continues to march us towards ecological armageddon, it might seem like a good time to get spiritual, or at least conduct some soul searching and consider if some of our faith in progress has been misplaced.
The Christian bible story of Adam and Eve is widely known, but variations appear across many traditions and elements of the story can be found in the earliest known works of literature. God created heaven and earth, and humans as stewards to watch over an idyllic garden paradise. Presumably, life flowed beautifully as the garden was filled with “trees pleasing to the eye and good for food.” All our needs were met. We did not know shame, guilt or evil, that is until we ate the forbidden fruit. The fruit imparted the knowledge of good and evil to Adam and Eve. We became ashamed of our nakedness, gained the ability to conjure negative and evil concepts, and were banished from paradise.
The realization that we can all return to heaven on earth, at least temporarily, began to cement itself into my being when I began meditating. Neuroscientists now understand that our brains produce signature brainwave patterns in meditative states, known as alpha, and anyone can learn to produce alpha. You don’t have be meditating to produce alpha, and, in fact, most of us experience alpha while we’re fully engaged doing something we love, or when spend quality time with people we love.
In alpha, time dilates, we begin to lose our sense of self, our worries fade away. Everything seems right in the world. Alpha has been described as “the peace that passeth all understanding”, a sort of personal heaven on earth. Creativity and learning skyrocket in alpha. Solutions to emotional and life problems spring to mind. We connect and communicate with ease. In fact, groups of people learning to enter alpha together through neurofeedback training regularly share mental experiences, in other words, become telepathic, according to leading researcher and Biocybernaut Institute founder Dr. James Hardt.
Alpha is a gateway toward a better world, improving our performance in almost any endeavor and enabling us to make better, more creative and inclusive decisions. Beyond Alpha, our brainwaves slow even further to dip into the theta spectrum. Our brains produce theta during light sleep and while we’re dreaming. Although it’s an elusive and rare state of consciousness, we can all learn to consciously slip into theta, and sometimes do so by chance, which is where things get really interesting.
It turns out that elite athletes at their best produce signature brain waves in the alpha-theta region. As Steven Kotler describes in The Rise of Superman, athletes who know and use what they call the Zone or flow, credit the state for the exponential strides achieved in human performance over the last few decades. They also credit their ability to consistently make perfect creative decisions that instantaneously link thought with action in live or die situations to flow.
Michael Jordan once supposedly told someone “this zone you speak of, I put it on like a coat.” Free solo climbers utilize the state to make hundreds, even thousands of perfect creative decisions over the course of a climb. Without ropes or climbing buddies, their lives literally depend on their ability to flawlessly implement perfect decision after perfect decision. In the business world, flow is becoming widely recognized as the key to productivity, innovation and success.
Zen meditators, yogis, psychics and mediums also produce signature brain waves in the alpha-theta spectrum during meditation and while obtaining information at a distance. According to Dr. Hardt, anyone can learn to enter this brain state with neurofeedback training. Those he as trained to do so have mystical experiences, and gain access what he calls the Akashic records: information about everything and anything past, present and future. Perfect decision making is only possible if one has instantaneous access to perfect information, including information about the future. It seems, in theta, we do. The feeling of union or oneness that occurs in flow is more than just a subjective feeling, it’s a real connection and exchange of information.
Pioneering psychologists William James, Abraham Maslow and Mihály Csíkszentmihályi all studied what they respectively referred to as mystical experience, peak experience and flow: experiences that we now understand occur in the alpha-theta spectrum of brain wave activity. Collectively, they credit peak performance, creativity and every breakthrough in human achievement, science, technology, the arts, religious practice, as well as happiness and the meaning of life to this brainwave state. Flow is what much of all of human endeavor, over all of history has sought.
Csíkszentmihályi coined the term flow, probably the best known term for alpha-theta spectrum states of consciousness because the word was continually used to describe the state regardless nationality, age, social status and education. With the help of functional MRI’s, scientists have now shown that the disappearance of the ego, the sense of self and time, is also more than just a subjective feeling. In flow states, our pre-frontal cortex, the part of our brain thought to generate higher cognitive abilities, our sense of self, impulse control, logical problem solving, analysis and judgement shuts down.
Scores of extreme athletes risk life and limb in the pursuit of flow, and countless religious seekers over millennia have dedicated their lives to finding flow, because within it, we find heaven on earth. Deep within flow states, we find “psychic union with the universe”, oneness with mountains, rivers, whatever environment we find ourselves in, God, or whatever we choose focus on. When the analyzing, judging part of our brain that imparts us with the knowledge of good and evil shuts down, we return to a feeling of heaven on earth. Our distant ancestors were onto something.
When we really acknowledge what happens in this magical state of consciousness though, the wisdom of story of Eden, and our path to creating a true and lasting state of heaven on earth becomes clear. Deep within flow, towards the theta spectrum, we fully lose our sense of self and judgment - knowledge of good and evil from our ego’s perspective. We perceive everything in our awareness as it is, without emotion or judgment, in perfect clarity. We also tap into the creative power of the universe, a sort of quantum computing power.
We step away from our identities as separate beings competing for survival, status and resources. Our consciousness flows beyond our brains and bodies. We gain instantaneous access at a distance to slices of information about one another, our environment, and the actual state of the entire universe, past, present and future. We also gain the ability to instantly generate infinite possible futures with this information, then pull a single desired outcome into existence.
Extreme athletes, inventors and luminaires through the ages have shown us what is possible when we tap into the far side of flow. Many have been judged crazy, even persecuted and killed for doing so, but they have accomplished countless astounding, world changing successes. Their accumulated achievements are undeniable, along with the key importance of flow. Modern physicists and quantum biologists are beginning to scientifically explain how and why perfect creative action and decision making is possible in flow: information is the fundamental building block of the universe, and everything, including our brains, is connected to an invisible field of information that permeates and interconnects all space and time. Our collective understanding of flow is rapidly increasing, as well as our competence in it. A silent revolution is taking place on earth as more and more of us acknowledge and use the power of flow.
My question is: what happens as more of us begin respecting and accessing the far side of flow? What does the world look like when we begin making perfect and inclusive creative decisions from a state of consciousness where we have instantaneous access to perfect information, a state in which we are all connected to one another and nature herself? Perhaps our fall from Eden was only temporary. When we stop gorging ourselves on the forbidden fruit of so called higher thinking, we return to heaven on earth. On the far side of flow, hidden underneath our ego based knowledge of good and evil, we find immensely wise creative powers, and the path towards resuming our God given birthrights as the stewards of Eden.
Angie Aristone and Roderick Alan
Angie is a Conscious Living Coach, Psychic-Medium, Animal Telepath and Speaker. Angie and her partner Rod are co-authors of the book “Consciousness Becomes You”, an intimate exploration of consciousness and extra-ordinary abilities.