|1. What is the heart of the mind?
The heart of the mind is the
love, or the flow of loving awareness, that is at our
core, and which allows us to have the experience of God.
We are able to experience that love when we learn to
quiet our mental chatter of thoughts, and rest our minds
in present stillness. The purpose of experiencing the
heart of the mind is not about self-improvement; it is
about self-realization, or transformation. Improvement is
always nice, but it undervalues what is available.
What does the heart of the mind have to do with organized
Religions were inspired
by such mystics as Jesus, Abraham, Buddha, and Muhammad,
all of whom had a transcendent experience of being
overcome with limitless love. Many religions describe the
experience as a revelation of God. However, this
experience does not require that one belong to any
organized religion, do any specific ritual, or believe
What is the difference between the experience of God and
belief in God?
often celebrate a path to God, rather than the experience
of God, which is consciousness transforming. It is easier
to recite prayers and sing songs, than it is to stop
thinking and doing, and surrender to the silence,
allowing your awareness to rest in its source. Worship
services often engage peoples attention with
prayers, recitations and inspiring messages, contributing
to the endless distractions available that ensure that we
never have to have an intimate moment with our own still
Experiencing God, the
loving consciousness at our core, transforms fear and
anger, and promotes peace in the world, rather than holy
What do you mean by evolution of consciousness?
Repeated encounters of
union with God, or unity consciousness, allows the
out-flowing love -- the pure unbounded consciousness
which is at our core -- to transform our perceptions.
Attending to the heart of the mind is deeply relaxing,
while it expands our capacity for awareness itself.
Experiencing your own still minds unbounded
awareness promotes energy and health of the body; it
unveils the psychic abilities that are naturally
available to quiet receptive minds; and reveals our
enduring connection to all conscious beings. Wisdom
teachers throughout the world have said these changes in
our consciousness are purposeful and evolutionary.
How can a person experience God in their lives if they
dont believe in God?
Seeking an experience of
God is a testable experiment, requiring only ones
willingness to do nothing, remain silent, cease thinking,
and direct ones attention within. Stabilizing your
attention by "resting your mind in God" yields
an experience of dynamic energy, light, and loving
connection to all consciousness. This love is neither
sexual nor sentimental, and it has no object or agenda
except the expression of itself. Experiencing God is an
experience of being a channel or conduit for unlimited
love, and it is available to all, regardless of your
What do you mean by the phrase, "We are hardwired
for God?" Does it mean we are all mystics?
After more than 25 years
as a stress-reduction researcher and physician, Dr.
Herbert Benson of Harvard Medical School concluded that
belief in a limitless power is innate to all humanity. He
found that people all over the world are physiologically
geared to seek transpersonal experiences of prayer or
meditation, though they may not use those terms. Benson
coined the phrase "Wired for God" to describe
the natural impulse that compels people from all cultures
to direct their attention to this great power or energy
source which feels near, and which promotes healing of
the body and the mind. We all have the innate capacity to
experience, and carry in our lives an awareness of the
loving consciousness that is at our core, which seeks to
extend itself through us.
Why couldnt Carl Sagan find God?
In Sagans last
book, The Demon Haunted World (1996), he examined
flying saucers, crop circles, alien abductions, and God,
and found them all incomprehensible. In order to
experience God you have to have a still receptive mind.
Sagan was so brilliant, he was inundated with his own
thoughts. Although he obviously was looking for God, he
failed in that quest, because God is revealed in a quiet
mind, and is inaccessible by thought.
What do you mean by "separation is an
The awareness which
animates and informs our being is not limited to our
brains or bodies. We are all connected to one another and
all of life through our nonlocal consciousness.
Nonlocality is a modern physics term relating to the idea
that we live in a holographic universe where all the
parts are inter-connected. Although the idea of
separation as an illusion was first described by Buddha
and other Indian philosophers over twenty-five hundred
years ago, the concept has new currency as the
quantum-interconnectedness described by physicist David
Bohm, and demonstrated in many recent physics
experiments. Christians might say that we are all one in
God, while a physicist says that there is no separation,
because thats the way the universe is built.
What do mind-to-mind connections, ESP, and psychic spying
have to do with spirituality?
Throughout twenty years
of research in the 1970s and 80s at Stanford
Research Institute, we found that most people have the
mental ability to describe and experience activities at
distant places which are blocked from ordinary
perception. We called this clairvoyant or psychic ability
"remote viewing," although this expanded
awareness is not limited to vision. ESP and remote
perception are possible because of our connection in
consciousness to each other, as well as to the source of
awareness itself, which is God.
Our studies of ESP and
expanded awareness at SRI were financed by the CIA and
other US defense intelligence agencies, for the purpose
of spying on the Russians during the Cold War.
Why would a scientist pray?
Many scientists would
rather suffer a total crisis of pain and lack of meaning,
than be caught believing something silly. If God is
perceived as being an experience, or an activity in ones
consciousness, rather than as some person or thing to
believe in, prayer may be less of a threat. For a
scientist, silliness is a fate worse than death. Prayer is a
state in which we are receptive to Truth without
As a scientist, do you really believe there is life after
evidence is now very strong that some aspect of our
personality or memory survives. Psychiatrist Ian
Stevenson at the University of Virginia has collected
hundreds of case reports showing that some young children
have verifiable memories of past lives, including the
ability to identify wives, sweethearts, and even
murderers from a previous life. At this time, a
reasonable person could hold the opinion that some part
of our mind-stuff does endure after the death of the
body, but, nonetheless, we wouldnt recommend
putting off any present plans to be accomplished in your
What makes you think that spiritual healing is actually
evidence for distant healing is now quite strong. It
appears that a spiritual healer can focus her attention
on the well-being of a distant person, and send that
person loving prayers or a healing message, with the
expectation that the person will experience improved
health. Papers have been published in medical journals
attesting to the success of distant healers in helping
both cardiac and AIDS patients in formal, double-blind,
hospital-based experiments. Distant healing provides more
evidence for our mind-to-mind connections.
How do our dreams suggest that the future affects the
From Biblical times to
the present, people have been aware that dreams can
sometimes foretell events in the future. Formal
experiments at Stanford Research Institute and Princeton
have shown convincingly that people in the laboratory can
describe pictures and places that they will see at a
later time, even before these precognitive targets have
been chosen by a random number generator. This shows that
our consciousness is not limited by space or time.
We are most open to all
psychic connections in our dreams. The elephant that you
see in a parade today, may be the cause of your dream
about an elephant last night.
Why are addictions called spiritual illnesses?
An addiction to sex,
drugs, alcohol, or anything else indicates a search for
an external solution to an internal pain. Mind-altering
substances can definitely stop the internal chatter
temporarily, but addictions are often a response to a
persons failure to contact the love that is at his
or her own core. Addictions often stem from our innate
yearning for transcendence, for connection to something
greater than our separate selves, and for freedom from
depressing thoughts of meaninglessness and isolation; and
thats why they are called spiritual illnesses.
Is it possible to find peace of mind in Silicon Valley?
You can be in peace; you
cant have peace. Peace and happiness ensue from
peaceful moments in the present, rather than
accomplishments. In Silicon Valley people are obsessed
with accomplishments, because it is so easy in that
stimulating environment. After you have all the money you
need, then you can devote the rest of your life to
remodeling. One goal of our book is to help people move
their attention from all the busy doing, which leads to
desperation and fear, to being in stillness, gratitude
and peace. It is possible to be in peace in Silicon
Valley, but you do have to give up the remodeling.
Does your book tell us how to find the meaning of life?
Through the ages,
mystics of every religious persuasion have felt that the
most meaningful thing a person could devote his or her
life to, is learning to direct ones attention within, to
make a conscious connection with some transforming
spiritual experience we could say, "to learn
to know God" and then to help other people to
do the same. The Heart of the Mind is about our
human opportunity to take control of our attention, and
realize the power of consciousness.